Monday, June 06, 2011

David Cameron confronts Sharia law to assert British values

This is going to be very interesting.

Following the Prime Minister’s Munich speech in February when he spoke of the failure of multiculturalism, the Government is now fleshing out the policy and explaining the practical implications. Having unequivocally and quite rightly declared war on Islamism (ie Islamic terrorism), it is widely reported (and here, here and here) that the Government now intends to tackle ‘radicalisation’ (ie the cause of Islamism) by cutting state funding ‘to any Islamic group that espoused extremist views’.

These ‘extremist views’ have yet to be codified, but they must of necessity include those precepts of sharia which are inimical to the values of a liberal democracy. David Cameron has already called for an end to the sharia agenda : he made it clear that any expansion of the Islamic code in the UK would indeed undermine society and alienate other communities. He was right to observe that two codes of law cannot work side-by-side: one must give way to the other. We cannot have different laws for different communities: all citizens must be equal before the law, under the ultimate jurisdiction of English or Scottish law.

And so it appears henceforth that Islamic groups will need to subscribe to ‘key British values’. Home Secretary Theresa May criticises in particular the Federation of Student Islamic Societies for being soft on extremism. “They need to be prepared to stand up and say that organisations that are extreme or support extremism or have extremist speakers should not be part of their grouping,” Mrs May said.

But here’s where it gets interesting.

The Government defines as extremist anyone who ‘does not subscribe to human rights, equality before the law, democracy and full participation in society’, including those who ‘promote or implicitly tolerate the killing of British soldiers’.

Those who actively and explicitly promote the killing of British soldiers are traitors to the state and (in His Grace’s opinion) ought to be dealt with in the traditional manner. But the ‘implicit toleration’ of such killing is treason of quite a different hue: it appears that the Muslim Council of Britain will no longer be able to maintain a dignified silence when the UK goes to war with some section of the Ummah, for silence will surely amount to implicit toleration. Does praise of bin Laden (his heirs and successors) amount to implicit toleration of the killing of British soldiers? Does the refusal of a British Muslim soldier (or reservists) to fight in Iraq or Afganistan constitute implicit toleration of the killing of their comrades?

And what of ‘human rights, equality before the law, democracy and full participation in society’? Is the European Convention on Human Rights now sacred writ? Is the creed of liberalism now so absolute that none may question it? Is government funding to be withdrawn from all who question the inviolability of ‘equality’? What is this ‘full participation in society’? What of (say) the Christadelphians, a community patterned after first century Christianity, who do not vote and will not join HM Armed Forces? Do they subscribe to an ‘extremist philosophy’? What of the Plymouth Brethren, who may be perceived to be more than a little antithetical to gender equality and a little narrow and imbalanced with their homeschooling curriculum?

By codifying a set of values to which Muslim groups will need to subscribe, the Government is effectively reintroducing a Test Act: only those who profess adherence to the orthodoxy (of the Established Church) will be eligible for public funding and government engagement. In addition to combating violent extremism, the Government will tackle ‘extremist philosophies’ by looking closely at ‘the values’ of the organisations themselves. Mrs May said: “There’s an ideology out there that we need to challenge and when we first came in as a government one of the things we were very clear about here at the Home Office was we needed to look at extremism, not just violent extremism.” The assertion is that violent extremism is incubated within the ideology of non-violent extremism.

This is quite possibly the most significant shift in the Conservative Party’s religio-political history since Catholic emancipation. As a Tory-Whig church party it gradually (and rightly) eschewed petty denominational concerns in order to become the Conservative ‘broad church’ (quite literally) consonant with two centuries of more ecumenical political philosophy.

While everyone knows that the target is Islam, the Home Secretary has moved swiftly to quell any whiff of inquisition: “We should not just look at one particular type of terrorism but look at violent extremism and terrorism more widely as well,” Mrs May said. This must mean the Government is not looking only at one particular philosophy but at ‘extremist philosophy’ more widely.

So Methodists, Baptists, Christadelphians and Plymouth Brethren beware.

In order to address the issue of ‘extremist philosophy’, one must tackle certain sharia schools and colleges (do NOT click here if you may be offended by images of sharia punishment). Michael Gove seems already to be on the case. He'll need a whole new Ofsted regime to deal with these issues, but the Department for Education has hitherto shown itself to be remarkably complacent.

And then the Government must closely examine the ‘values’ inculcated in schools by the distinct ethos now permitted under the free schools initiative: ‘creationism’ is the least of our problems.

But it is worth asking why this Test applies only to the receipt of government funding or the honour of government engagement.

Should not all those who hold ‘un-British views’ be dealt with appropriately? If it is right to tackle (say) the intolerance of equal rights for women, because ministers now believe there is a link between non-violent extremism and violent acts of terrorism, then a fortiori it must be right to confront any expression of dissent from state orthodoxy, even when that dissent is non-violent.

There are serious implications here for religious liberty which the Prime Minister (surrounded by ‘religiously illiterate, secularist advisers’) has not even begun to consider.

A Briton presently has the right to oppose or support British policy in Afghanistan, Iraq or Libya and may campaign to that effect, write, agitate and stand for election towards the chosen end. A corollary of such democratic engagement is that (s)he does not have the right to stone adulterers to death, bomb the underground or attempt to blow up aeroplanes. But there are many and diverse religious practices which conflict with traditional British liberties (ie ‘values’); they are a logical consequence of a pluralism and the development of a multi-faith society. While few would defend such abhorrent practices as forced marriages, ‘honour killings’, female genital mutilation or child abuse, there is a manifest tension between the assertion of individuality over the common good, and ‘human rights’ over community cohesion. Since there are no agreed criteria by which conflicting religious claims can be settled, religion is increasingly relegated to the private sphere: morality thereby becomes largely a matter of taste or opinion, and moral error ceases to exist.

The modern era is obsessed with three themes – autonomy, equality and rights. These are the values that allow each to be whatever he or she chooses. Left unfettered, the assertion of these leads to anarchy, so a British ‘values system’ has to be imposed for society to function at all. As society expands to encompass ever larger numbers of religious, ethnic and linguistic groups, rigid social structures are stretched to breaking point. The church requires either cultural homogeneity or an élite sufficiently powerful to enforce conformity. But this negates the limited degree of Christian religious pluralism which the passing of the 1689 Act of Toleration specifically permitted. Dissenting traditions have gained in number and influence and have weakened the grip of state religion. The costs of coercing religious conformity are no longer politically acceptable: the state is not willing to accept the price in social conflict and so adopts a position of ‘neutrality’ on the competing claims of various religious bodies and moral values.

The ultimate source of the state’s values system is the subject of much debate. In order to constrain religious expression in the public sphere, the Republic of France has legislated to prohibit the display of all religious symbols and articles of clothing from its public buildings. More recently, President Sarkozy stated that burqas are to be banned, which comes into effect next week. He asserts that the garment 'demeans and debases women’.

In the UK, customs to do with dress, food laws or daily prayers have long been considered inoffensive as long as there is no compulsion or imposition. But the advent of sharia courts, while considered ‘unavoidable’ by the Archbishop of Canterbury, are, according to former Bishop of Rochester Dr Michael Nazir-Ali, perceptibly inconsistent with what have become inalienable values such as equality between men and women in the sight of the law, inheritance rights, the education and employment of women, and the freedom of young people to chose themselves whom they will marry. There have been rabbinical courts (Beth Din) in the UK for three centuries, and the Protestant state has similarly granted to Roman Catholics the right to take account of their own religious sensitivities. But these judicial provisions have always been subject to Statute Law, and appeal has always been possible from their judgements. This settlement is now being challenged by sharia courts, some proponents of which insist that their dispensations are superior to parliamentary statute.

There is no doubt that some religious practices may coerce some, especially women through such conventions as child marriage or inequitable divorce settlements. But mindful of minority ethnic voting communities, politicians hitherto have been treading carefully along the via media between religious liberty and cultural prohibition. On this model of Britishness, there has been no demand for assimilation.

David Cameron is now demanding precisely that.

In consideration of what may constitute core British values, His Grace has already spoken.

The Christian moral social contract which existed (at least through the tinted lens of ‘Britishness’) has now been replaced by a new liberal moral uniformity. While the former was Anglican and benign, the latter is perceived to be increasingly intolerant of the dissident and unorthodox, seeking to impose itself in order to create social cohesion and control. Indeed, although the guiding principles of liberalism are respect for and tolerance of the ‘other’, it is itself increasingly being seen to be disrespectful and intolerant of the illiberal. This is antithetical to our ‘core values’. When we cease to tolerate benign dissent, we cease to act in accordance with the grand harmony of British history: indeed, we cease to be British.

To be British is to be free – to believe, to own, to contract and to associate. The state only has authority to the extent granted by Parliament, which is subject to the assent of the people. The foundations of those liberties – Magna Carta, Habeas Corpus, Bill of Rights, Act of Union – guard against state coercion. To abrogate them is to diminish our liberty and to deny our heritage. It is not British to be subject to foreign parliaments or alien courts – temporal or spiritual – especially where they seek to impose a doctrine or creed which is antithetical to that which we have evolved over the centuries. The sovereignty of the Crown in Parliament is inviolable.

To be British is sometimes to tolerate conflicting philosophies, mutually-exclusive theologies and illogical propositions.

But not at any cost.

86 Comments:

Blogger Tim said...

Is the European Convention on Human Rights now sacred writ?

It was the Conservative, Winston Churchill who suggested the ECHR due to the horrific human rights abuses of WW2 - a very good thing which we signed up to. The ECtHR therefore is THE authority on human rights.

6 June 2011 at 10:20  
Anonymous bluedog said...

Your Grace, the penny has dropped. The British state has permitted an internal threat to itself to emerge and now it doesn't like what it sees. The irony is clear, given that the external threat to the British state posed by the EU is blythely ignored.

Your communicant has previously opined that dealing with Islam can only be done by using the methods of Islam. Your commentary closes by saying, 'To be British is sometimes to tolerate conflicting philosophies, mutually-exclusive theologies and illogical propositions.

But not at any cost.'

Perhaps it is time to reconsider the policy of 'assissted passages' to distant lands.

6 June 2011 at 10:30  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cameron can lie as well as Blair and Brown. This is the pathetic creature that said "Not for the first time, I found myself thinking that it is mainstream Britain which needs to integrate more with the British Asian [moslem] way of life, not the other way around.”

Prior to the next election Lib-Lab-Con will once again be wooing their imported fast breeder islamic block vote to disenfranchise everyone else.

Meanwhile our rulers will continue to bless sharia courts, refuse to label meat from unstunned ritually slaughtered animals, house and protect terrorists at the tax payers’ expense, shower benefits on those with multiple wives and burgeoning families, hand out paltry £50 fines to those that abuse our returning troops, and turn a very big blind eye to the sexual grooming, murder and butchery of young girls such as Charlene Downes in Blackpool.

There’s only one party in Britain that would confront this evil.

6 June 2011 at 10:44  
Blogger JohnofEnfield said...

Slightly off topic...

"We cannot have different laws for different communities: all citizens must be equal before the law, under the ultimate jurisdiction of English or Scottish law."

Has anyone told Alex Salmond about this?

6 June 2011 at 10:59  
Blogger Maturecheese said...

YG, It is just really sad the state we find ourselves in. I find it impossible to believe that we are the same nation that twice last century sacrificed everything to defend ourselves against tyranny and conquest. How can such a robust people become so meek? Is it perhaps the case that the current threat is stealthy and therefore most of us fail to see it?

6 June 2011 at 11:26  
Anonymous malvoisin said...

Your blog states;

The Government defines as extremist anyone who ‘does not subscribe to human rights, equality before the law, democracy and full participation in society’, including those who ‘promote or implicitly tolerate the killing of British soldiers’.

I wonder will this apply to all the MPS who voted, bar 1 or 2 notable exceptions for 3 illegal wars that resulted in British servicemens deaths and who still keep our soldiers in harms way?

I wonder will this also apply to all those people who knew about the drugging, abuse and rape of all those underage British girls and hushed it up in the name of social harmony. including MPS,Police,Journalists? where was their Human rights, their equality before the law?

It would seem that anybody who tells the truth in this country is deemed an extremist. These (extremist) muslims are being honest in saying what the muslim agenda for this country is, and to be honest I have not seen the so-called moderate muslims protesting against this, have you?

6 June 2011 at 11:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why should 3 minority Christian groups "beware" your Grace?

The Church of England martyred those who dared translate the Bible into English, are you suggesting they may now embark on a new wave of heretic bashing?

They have form for this sort of thing you know!

6 June 2011 at 11:47  
Anonymous MrJ said...

"...Is the creed of liberalism now so absolute that none may question it? Is government funding to be withdrawn from all who question the inviolability of ‘equality’?..." "... although the guiding principles of liberalism are respect for and tolerance of the ‘other’, it is itself increasingly being seen to be disrespectful and intolerant of the illiberal...."

AGW is an extremist ideology which has achieved statutory status in the Climate Change Act 2008 passed by the House of Commons almost unanimously on a division with only 2 against and their 2 tellers. Needless to say, Mr Cameron (then leader of the Opposition) and Mr Clegg, other members of the present Cabinet and the party whips and were in the Yes lobby. Why is it thus privileged above, say creationistic or Darwinistic or socialistic ideologies (the latter certainly closely connected when not identical with Marxism in its many variants, disguises and dissemblings).

And there is the related question of latent or overt ideological denigration of the State of Israel's the defiance in the face of the genocidal menace from Arab States and Iran.

6 June 2011 at 11:55  
Anonymous tired and emotional said...

All that is being proposed is that views defined as extreme do not receive taxpayer money. These views are not banned or criminalised. The Labour Party are no longer in power, after all. what is being proposed is I think is perfectly sensible and long overdue.

6 June 2011 at 12:01  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Cranmer said

Since there are no agreed criteria by which conflicting religious claims can be settled, religion is increasingly relegated to the private sphere: morality thereby becomes largely a matter of taste or opinion, and moral error ceases to exist.

That statement exposes the absurdity of using any religious claims as the basis of morality. Fortunately in most contemporary societies there is a moral consensus (outside of any religious influence) that whilst fluctuating a little is fairly constant and it is more profound than simply a matter of taste.

The costs of coercing religious conformity are no longer politically acceptable: the state is not willing to accept the price in social conflict and so adopts a position of ‘neutrality’ on the competing claims of various religious bodies and moral values.

Of course!

What you want is for the “truth” of Christianity to once again be asserted by the State. Well that is not going to happen because for the majority of the UK population religion is simply irrelevant and we don’t want it shoved down their noses.

To be British is sometimes to tolerate conflicting philosophies, mutually-exclusive theologies and illogical propositions. But not at any cost.

That cost is freedom of speech. The State and its agents must assert the right for any of us to be able to criticise and ridicule Islam (or any other belief system) and protect those who do so and punish those who make threats in order to silence free speech. This is such a fundamental right in a democratic and free society that must be asserted again and again. This right must also be open to those (Muslims) who want to criticise our government’s policies and the actions of our armed forces. Only when there is a clear case of incitement to violence should this right be withheld. So comments like “Anglian soldiers go to hell” may be offensive to many but should be protected by the right to freedom of expression but “Behead those who insult Islam” is a clear incitement to murder and so the holder of that placard should have been arrested and charged.

6 June 2011 at 12:01  
Blogger prziloczek said...

As a practising Catholic I am worried by all this.
Very worried.
Is it now time (at last) to face up to persecution?

6 June 2011 at 12:10  
Anonymous Voyager said...

This is fatuous. How does Cameron expect to implement this policy ? West Yorkshire Police is responsible for a major airport with anti-suicide bomber balustrades; has a University or two defined by Theresa May as having Islamic terrorist cells; and easy access to another major international airport where security for incoming flights may be compromised by baksheesh.

Cameron has no idea what happens in Urdu/Bengali/Gujerati/Silet language groups and with a politico-religion based on cell-structures.

This may play well in Wittering but it is hilariously naive in Bradford, Bury, Oldham, Batley, Dewsbury, Keighley.....it is meaningless

6 June 2011 at 12:29  
Anonymous Judy K. Warner said...

The problem seems to arise because the government is afraid to name the enemy, just like our government in the United States. If Cameron were brave, he could have said something like this: "We are a nation and a society devoted to liberty, and we have muddled out a balance between individualism and the needs of preserving some social contract. Muslims who insist on certain practices and who advocate dismantling or overthrowing our current arrangement will not be permitted to continue. They can cease, or they can be deported."

That's off the top of my head and I'm sure very flawed, but you get the idea. Also, there isn't really a balance, as Your Grace points out, with the dominance of militant liberalism, but that's a fight within the society.

6 June 2011 at 13:03  
Blogger Owl said...

A very thought provoking article YG.

Cameron has always been strong on talking the talk. I am still waiting for him to actually walk the walk.

The absurdities of the so called equality laws is glaringly obvious to even the most dense.

It is long time to rediscover commonsense. If the people ever were allowed to have a say in the matter then the problem would never have arisen in the first place.

Commonsense would have stopped what every normal person, excepting our socialist/secular brothers and sisters, has seen as bloody obvious for a long time.

It is long past time to draw the line, I just wish that I could trust Cameron to actually do it.

6 June 2011 at 13:10  
Anonymous DanJ0 said...

I'm with Mr Davis on this, almost word for word. This is sticking plaster stuff to appease religionists of all flavours. We really need to be getting to a more formal footing regarding the State, core social values, and religion.

6 June 2011 at 13:21  
Anonymous DanJ0 said...

Judy: "We are a nation and a society devoted to liberty [...] [those] who advocate dismantling or overthrowing our current arrangement will not be permitted to continue. They can cease, or they can be deported."

We have complete freedom to only hold acceptable and conformist ideas, you mean. That's not devotion to liberty, it's the opposite.

6 June 2011 at 13:25  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Your Grace

It was inevitable!

Given that the national value system this country was built on, Judaeo-Christianity, has by law been degraded (through ‘human rights’) the next step is to replace it with human rights for the sake of social cohesion. From a secular point-of-view this seems eminently sensible. There is no functioning state where a values vacuum exists.

But that does not resolve the social cohesion issues: any who disagree with human rights (for example, votes for prisoners) are now classified in a ‘suspect category’.

On the one-hand people are not going to surrender their consciences and on the other the securing of social cohesion is required (the alternative being anarchy).

There are, it seems to me, two choices: either the state becomes totalitarian or our country’s intellectuals argue the case that, as history shows on both sides of the Atlantic, Judaeo-Christianity is a friend of liberty, security and freedom.

Which path will Britain go down?

In my opinion it will descend into totalitarianism. There are a range of factors that suggest this: the collapse of Judaeo-Christianity; its replacement by human rights and penetration by binding EU law.

6 June 2011 at 13:27  
Anonymous Voyager said...

In my opinion it will descend into totalitarianism

They have built a Corporatism around the Banks now grafted onto The State. They have used GM crops as another issue to bind Politics to Corporatism. They have used Acts like RIPA and Civil Contingencies Act and Passenger Data Lists to build Control Systems aided by entities like Facebook designed to render people transparent.

The building blocks of a Fascist State have long been in place; but, and it is a big but, there is no anchoring, no foundations and this superstructure is floating free and drifting which is why it is noticed.

Consequently it will probably be destroyed, but what comes after that ?

6 June 2011 at 13:57  
Anonymous Paul said...

Britain has a serious problem with militant Islam. Does it have the courage to confront Islamofascism ?

6 June 2011 at 14:45  
Blogger ENGLISHMAN said...

Surely you can not swallow this from a serial liar,all that needs to be done is to ask yourself how many "promises" has he kept during his short span of office,and he only make bold statements like this when he wants to divert attention from something really nasty that is being planned,something to think about while waiting for the immigration cap,the referendum on the eussr,the abolishion of the echr,the repatriation of soverign powers to a soverign parliament and people.Treeesa still has not dismantled the cameras where i live,though they have dissapeared in brum,apparently it is perfectly reasonable to spy on English people,but not muslims,so much for equality.

6 June 2011 at 15:00  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

D. Singh said...

Given that the national value system this country was built on, Judaeo-Christianity, has by law been degraded (through ‘human rights’) the next step is to replace it with human rights for the sake of social cohesion. From a secular point-of-view this seems eminently sensible. There is no functioning state where a values vacuum exists.

It is extraordinary the way human rights are denounced by many here as if they were “evil”. Although the PC agenda at home coupled with some incomprehensible edicts from Europe has undoubtedly tarnished it, surely no reasonable person (and so I exclude Mr Singh from this group) could object to the notion of universal human rights? The problem arises when those rights clash.

You misunderstand the “secular point of view” which is simply an environment in which alternative points of view can be moderated without the need of supernatural advice or religious discrimination. Take the example of prisoner voting; there is no reason to suppose that from a secular standpoint it is should be supported. The arguments for and against have been well aired and my view is that losing your right to vote is perfectly reasonable if your crime was sufficient for you to have lost your liberty.

Your claim that moral values have ceased to exist is nonsense. Most people behave in perfectly well without the need to resort to magic and the State has not collapsed.

6 June 2011 at 15:13  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Mr Davis

Reasonable people can and do object to the idea of universal human rights. Why wherever do people get them from?

They’re made up of course.

So why should people believe in made up rights? Do you believe in fairies?

Your view as to prisoners’ voting rights doesn’t count. You do not have the same status as the European Court of Human Rights.

I have not claimed moral rights have ceased to exist nor have I claimed that the state has collapsed.

A little more attention to the text and a little less hysteria on your part would do nicely.

6 June 2011 at 15:36  
Anonymous Judy K. Warner said...

DanJO, I understand your point. But Cameron should speak as if what I wrote were true. It is probably not possible to take on Muslims and multiculturalists at the same time. Muslims are more dangerous in the short run and taking them on would probably have more support because people are not as brainwashed about Islam as about multiculturalism. I realize the two things overlap considerably, but naming radical Muslims as the enemy is an easier proposition.

Furthermore, it would give Cameron practice at naming anything as the enemy.

6 June 2011 at 15:46  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Graham Davis said...

Your claim that moral values have ceased to exist is nonsense. Most people behave in perfectly well without the need to resort to magic and the State has not collapsed.

According to what standard have they behaved "perfectly well?" You write as if this standard has some sort of objective existence when in fact (according to your own worldview) it exists nowhere outside the synapses of your own mind. In the materialist world, actions do not have moral content. They simply are. Men ascribe moral content to these actions by whatever light they may choose to employ. Different men apply different lights and arrive at completely different standards.

This is the sense in which morality has ceased to exist. You say "I behave well according to my own standard." Well, what credit is due to you for that? Find some rational basis for a moral standard that binds the conscience of men against their will, and then you will have a standard of morality that means something. At present, you have nothing to say beyond "I'm really Really REALLY happy that the guy with the mustache somehow managed to lose the Second World War, or we would all be operating with a completely different moral standard right about now." And who would gainsay it? By what authority would you condemn it? The synapses in his brain are just as authoritative as the synapses in yours. And, well, he would have the guns.

carl

Remembering Normandy. On this day in 1944, my Father left Brooklyn for Liverpool. He walked onto Utah Beach towards the end of the month, and began his war at the breakout at St Lo.

6 June 2011 at 15:53  
Anonymous Stephen Gash said...

The EU is now in a union with Muslim countries, called the Mediterranean Union. Ultimately this will lead to free movement of people from Muslim countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea into the EU.

Not one of these Muslim countries has signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, instead signing their own Cairo Declaration that enshrines sharia law.

With Labour it has always been about expansionism under the guise of "human rights" with the Tories it is expansionism under the guise of "free trade".

Either way, Europeans and ultimately the West lose.

6 June 2011 at 15:58  
Anonymous not a machine said...

Law say so much about what one labels/understands as freedom .
He whose name must not be spoken , understood that there would be limits "rights or rites". I understand that this is aimed at university radicalisation , not that other areas are untouched .

Labour are on the cusp of illuminating there own national demise/treachery , let alone the ecnomic load that will in the future demand an explantion.

not at any cost , how terribly correct that will turn out to be .

6 June 2011 at 16:10  
Anonymous Oswin said...

DanJo @ 13:25 - it may disturb you to hear this, but I wholly agree with you! :O) (let's not delve deeper, but savour the moment...)

Mr.Singh & Voyager: your totalitarian nightmare of a fasces of unwilling, disparate 'sticks' rings frighteningly true.

I am 100% in favour of the de-Islamification of Europe, but I fear it will not be as urged by such as we. A decade or two of 'Long Knives' perhaps?

6 June 2011 at 16:13  
Blogger Gnostic said...

While we're about it let's see a move towards curbing political extremism to prevent situations where one person, or a small group of people, believes s/he/they have the right to make constitutional changes without any consultation or mandate whatsoever.

6 June 2011 at 16:15  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Oswin said...

A decade or two of 'Long Knives' perhaps?

Amazing! At times I can't help but expect that some commentators on this weblog will break out into a rousing rendition of the Horst-Wessel-Lied.

carl

6 June 2011 at 16:19  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

Carl Jacobs said...

Men ascribe moral content to these actions by whatever light they may choose to employ. Different men apply different lights and arrive at completely different standards.

Do you seriously believe that before the invention of Christianity (or whatever religion you favour) that there was no understanding of morality, what breathtaking arrogance.

Find some rational basis for a moral standard that binds the conscience of men against their will, and then you will have a standard of morality that means something.

“Binds men against their will” What a totalitarian notion.

The human values that predate all religions but which Christianity has attempted to usurp are biologically driven. We are hardwired to care for our offspring (otherwise you and I would not be here). We have evolved this way because it takes a long time for our young to reach maturity and independence. During that period our parents must devote much of their energy to our welfare, this is the crucible of human morality.

Religion invariably corrupts this natural process by introducing its own so called morals that are driven by superstition and often by prejudice. Like a drug dealer it maintains its grip by entrapping the young and promising everlasting life to its adherents. Look at it that way and perhaps you wont be so devoted to it.

6 June 2011 at 16:20  
Anonymous Dreadnaught said...

To be British is sometimes to tolerate conflicting philosophies, mutually-exclusive theologies and illogical propositions.

The key word is 'sometimes' but I would prefer the word to be 'never' - when the conflicting philosophies etc are simply incompatible with the laws, conventions, culture and will of the indigenous people of Britain.

British politicians and in particular the traitors that call themselves NuLabour have ruptured the very fabric of what has held the nation together for centuries.

Openness to give shelter to genuine refugees; resolve and ability to take up arms to defend against repression at home or abroad; a desire to see our children inherit a sense of pride and belief in their country. These are only a few of the attributes we once took for granted but now seem but parodies of the values many of our fellow citizens fought and died for in the 20th Century.

I'm glad my folks are no longer around to see how their sacrifices have been forgotten and their standards eroded.

I am ashamed of this tarnished Britain whose Establishment's spineless disregard for its native people has become the sick joke of the world.

6 June 2011 at 17:01  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

The pen is mightier than the sword YG.

Just give me the nod and I will stick him in the eye, with my nib.

It never fails, they don't come back for seconds.

I bought one of those pens that can penetrate a tin can, especialy for the occasion, built in camera too. As I know your communicants enjoy their youtube footage.

6 June 2011 at 17:01  
Anonymous Voyager said...

It is extraordinary the way human rights are denounced by many here as if they were “evil”.


Well perhaps you could do some reading on the difference between Positive Freedom and Negative Freedom and why people in this country used to feel they did not need Permission to have "Rights" but that the Authorities needed permission to circumscribe them
which is no longer the case if you read Statewatch or review RIPA or the Civil Contingencies Act

6 June 2011 at 17:01  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

I never used to be that bothered by the EU but I'm minded now to want to leave it in order to have control of our borders at least.

wv: pantory

6 June 2011 at 17:08  
Anonymous Dreadnaught said...

Has anyone else noticed that politicians are like bananas - they start off green, go bent then turn yellow.

http://www.patcondell.net/

6 June 2011 at 17:14  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Graham Davis said...

Do you seriously believe that before the invention of Christianity (or whatever religion you favour) that there was no understanding of morality, what breathtaking arrogance.
No, I seriously believe that morality proceeds from God, and that God exists prior to Creation. In the absence of God, there is no morality. There is only fang and tooth and claw.

What a totalitarian notion.
Are you seriously suggesting that men are subject only that which they have given assent? No, of course, you aren't. Otherwise, you would have to say that a man could commit murder in his own self-interest simply by refusing to recognize murder as an immoral act. You know this turns morality on its head. In fact, you know the moral standard must be independent of the moral actor, or each man may be justified by his own declaration. This in fact is why there can be no morality in the absence of God. It must originate in a source independent of man.

The human values that predate all religions but which Christianity has attempted to usurp are biologically driven.
I should love to see the controlled experiment that demonstrates morality as 'biologically driven.' Perhaps we could first produce a biological model of morality as it exists in the human mind so that we might examine it. What a fine example of a faith statement driven by materialist presuppositions. This is nothing but the dogma of materialist anthropology.

In the meantime, it might be noted that we don't seem to be 'wired' too consistently since we have learned to butcher our own children with such aplomb, and all in the name of self-interest. Tell me. If a man should decide to kill his fourth child (a daughter) in the interest of children 1 through 3, has he committed an immoral act? Perhaps he shouldn't kill her. Perhaps he should just sell her to a passing traveler for sex. Children 1 through 3 would benefit from the money. Did I mention that daughter four has Down's Syndrome? Does that matter? Did I mention that the culture in which he lives finds no fault with his action? Would that be a evil decision? If so, why? What standard holds that man accountable? What 'totalitarian notion' binds his will to prevent him from acting on the self-interest of killing or selling his daughter?

Religion invariably corrupts this natural process by introducing its own so called morals
One wonders what religion corrupted the Communists in Russia when they were so busy expunging it. Or perhaps that was a rational reaction to a corrupting influence?

I notice (once again, because I ask this question all the time, and never get an answer) that you did not identify the standard by which you determined that people are behaving 'pretty well.' I don't suppose you would give content to that standard and state its authority, would you? One day I really would appreciate an answer.

carl

6 June 2011 at 17:17  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Carl, I am an atheist. Yet I tend to behave in moral and often altruistic way. How do I manage this? More importantly, why do I do it?

6 June 2011 at 17:23  
Blogger Mr Dodo said...

Is it extremist views or extremist behaviour that needs to be tackled?

One or two people on this blog hold extreme views about Catholicism - seeing the Pope as anti-Christ and all adherents to the Church of Rome hell bound. Should they be able to express these views? I think so. Should they advocate violent action against Catholics then the law should intervene.

As a christian I believe God ordained a certain way of life for humanity and this is articulated in scripture. Monogomous, life long marriage between men and women, intended for companionship and the raising of children. No sex outside of marriage, no divorce, no abortion, no ethenasia, no homosexuality, no murder,etc.

These are 'extreme' views by today's standards. Am I entitled to express them and live by them? Of course. Am I entitled to impose them on others? No. Am I entitled to incite hatred towards others who disagree with my christian beliefs? No.

State intervention in the belief systems of people is a slippery slope. It is quite proper to criminalise incitement to hatred and acts of violence. But as we have seen, one man's freedom of expression is another man's incitement to hatred and violence.

6 June 2011 at 17:38  
Anonymous Voyager said...

The human values that predate all religions but which Christianity has attempted to usurp are biologically driven.

You are a prisoner of your culture. If you really believe that you have had limited contact with other cultures some of which do not value Individual Conscience over Group Rights......

I wonder if your values were shared by Mayans and Incas ?

6 June 2011 at 17:43  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

DanJ0 said...

Yet I tend to behave in moral and often altruistic way. How do I manage this? More importantly, why do I do it?

You must first answer this question. How do you identify "moral and altruistic actions?" Is Hypothetical Action A moral or not? You have no authority beyond yourself. Your decisions thus become arbitrary. One man says "It is wrong to kill Jews simply because they are Jews." Another man say "No, it is right to kill Jews simply because they are Jews." You cannot appeal to yourself to adjudicate the argument. Ultimately you have nothing but power at your disposal to assert your vision. This is the morality of fang and tooth and claw.

In the real world, you have plagiarized the moral precepts of the dominant religion (in this case, Christianity), shaped them to fit your own particular desires, and declared them the product of your own secular reason. You are like Gosplan in the old Soviet Union. It set prices in the Communist state by observing the functioning of the Capitalist economies. So also with the moral vision of the secularists. By yourself, you cannot derive even the basis of human equality. Rational evaluation will demonstrate the inequality of men by every available metric. The only basis for human equality is that men are morally equidistant from God. So you irrationally assert what reason cannot establish, and then act as if you have established it by reason.

This is why you do what you do.

carl

6 June 2011 at 17:45  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Carl-Jacobs @ 16:19

You misunderstand my point completely.

I meant that we here, will be the culled!

6 June 2011 at 17:54  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

"In the real world, you have plagiarized the moral precepts of the dominant religion (in this case, Christianity), shaped them to fit your own particular desires, and declared them the product of your own secular reason."

That's saying I've been socialised with them, right? The values have been codified in some way, perhaps from the Bible originally but now held in social institutions, and I have learned them? If I were to have children then I might pass them on too I suppose.

What about animals? The Bible is not that great with moral precepts concerning animals. Yet I have moral responses towards them. I actually have a visceral response, rather than a reasoned response. More socialising, right?

Does empathy ever play a part at all in your thinking? We're a self-aware species, right? We're gregarious too and live in societies. So, I am fully aware that I am one of a large number of people much like me, people who can feel just like me, who have welfare interests, and who fare better or worse according the behaviour of others.

Might there be something in there that one might use to derive a set of ethical principles irrespective of the currently or historically dominant religion? You know, I think I can. In fact, it would look a bit like the Golden Rule in both its forms.

6 June 2011 at 18:07  
Anonymous Dreadnaught said...

Carl said

'In the absence of God, there is no morality'

I can speak only for myself and I believe that the principle of morality is empathy; what differs are our approaches to that principle, and how we interpret our feelings of empathy in order to make a coherent system.

Human beings are empirically rooted as social 'animals'; we are essentially tribal, and it is this which forms the basis of human morality. It also forms the idea of justice; through our empathy for other humans, we seek to mete out punishment to wrongdoers on the same level of seriousness as the crimes they have committed.

If I have to be labelled an 'anything' I believe that I would have to accept that I am a Humanist. I beleive in the principle that the only 'saviour' if one is needed for humanity, is humanity itself and how it treats all species on and including the welfare of the planet its self. To this end, it relies on compassion and enlightened self-interest to foster a sense of altruism, community, and thereby constitutes morality.

6 June 2011 at 18:09  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

*snap*

:)

6 June 2011 at 18:19  
Anonymous martin sewell said...

Apparently the Hijab is "not religious" according to Iran.
Or perhaps not religious when it suits...http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2011/jun/06/iran-women-olympic-strip

6 June 2011 at 18:34  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Dreadnaught said...

I can speak only for myself...

My point exactly. This is the fatal flaw in your argument. You speak only for yourself and you have no intrinsic authority to establish anything. There are an infinite number of coherent systems. Why should one be preferred to another? Even in your response you are using words that carry assumed moral weight without defining the moral content of those words.

'Empathy'

'Enlightened'

'Altruism'

'Community'

Those words will not receive common definitions across various groups. A German in 1939 would not define those words according to your assumed usage, and yet he would have acted in accordance with each as he understood them. You are simply assuming content in accordance with your own understanding and asserting it as the norm of human understanding. In the end, you will collect with others who are like-minded and attempt to enforce your understandings by means of persuasion or power. You are tacitly asserting that 'Might makes Right' while quietly adding the caveat "Just so long as I and those like me are the Mightiest."

But what do you do when you find that you are not the mightiest? You speak only for yourself, and so your authority does not extend beyond yourself. Your preferences are just that - your preferences. What is that to any other man? If he disagrees and he has the power to enforce his will, by what authority will you condemn him? What authority do you possess that is not fundamentally rooted in your limited finite self?

The Good must remain the Good even when all men call it Evil. If it is subject to the whims and vagaries of man's desire then it is not The Good.

carl

6 June 2011 at 18:50  
Anonymous Dreadnaught said...

Indeed :-)

6 June 2011 at 18:51  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Carl Jacobs : no apology then?

6 June 2011 at 19:00  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

"You speak only for yourself and you have no intrinsic authority to establish anything."

Morals follow from our values. I don't own our values but I'm happy to argue for them and reach a consensus. As we have a similar interest in owning property, and not being victims of violence, and living in peace, reaching a consensus on justice ought to be fairly easy.

Really, is that so different from propagating a book through history and claiming its content has divine authority? The end result is the same: a set of principles, some examples showing how to apply them, and some concept of punishment to encourage people.

6 June 2011 at 19:09  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Oswin: "Carl Jacobs : no apology then?"

Careful, by recent observation I can say that asking for an apology when someone is wrong can lead to face-saving lies, and everything.

6 June 2011 at 19:11  
Anonymous Dreadnaught said...

Carl are you being obtuse or just plain pig headed.

Of course I can only speak for myself the same as you can only speak for yourself. The difference being - I do not assume your sense of superiority derived from your belief in a divine being: one of many divine beings I may add, that are worshipped in all sincerity by all sorts of societies through out the world.

It is my belief you all share one common theme - control of man by men through Superstition and Mythology. Your god is no different from any other - you just think it is. In my opinion, this is where your argument is in your word fatally flawed.

I just don't need your crutch dude.

6 June 2011 at 19:11  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Carl, I can recommend A Theory of Justice by John Rawls and the related critiques if you're interested in rationalising justice.

6 June 2011 at 19:25  
Anonymous Dreadnaught said...

Carl, at the risk of taking the topic completely off thread I crave HG's indulgence -

Consider this if you will as an example of the perversity of Christian morality from the 'golden age' of Victoria.

Charles Trevelyan, Assistant Secretary to the Treasury was placed in charge of the administration of Government relief to the victims of the Irish Famine in the 1840s. Trevelyan was born in Taunton, Somerset, the son of the Venerable George Trevelyan, Archdeacon of Taunton.

He saw the Famine as a "mechanism for reducing surplus population". He described the famine as "The judgement of God sent the calamity to teach the Irish a lesson, that calamity must not be too much mitigated. …The real evil with which we have to contend is not the physical evil of the Famine, but the moral evil of the selfish, perverse and turbulent character of the people"

http://multitext.ucc.ie/d/Charles_Edward_Trevelyan

Christian morality better or more consistent than mine? I don't think so.

6 June 2011 at 19:41  
Anonymous non mouse said...

Thank you, Your Grace: I'm still ruminating on this one; largely, I fear, because of CamCom's opacity. At best, he 'talks as he warms' - and while no one can second-guess him, he has yet to do anything to the advantage of our island people.

Mr. carl jacobs - appreciate your explanations... except for the glitch when you misread our excellent Oswin! I'm sure you'll remember, on reflection, that we developed superior iron and sword-making techniques in the early fourth century AD - but they were based sub-continental methods that had reached us via the Middle East (esp. Damascus).* Christian education moved on; ...

This is why I'm especially relieved about your recognition that: In the real world, you have plagiarized the moral precepts of the dominant religion (in this case, Christianity), shaped them to fit your own particular desires, and declared them the product of your own secular reason. --

The marxist/humanist brigade have stolen many ideas without crediting sources: even their dialectic echoes Hegel. Furthermore, they appropriated education and usurped the role Christianity has modelled: commies knew who brought the Search for Truth to Britain - and developed it. Their subsequent adaptation of learning institutions for purely secular agenda is supremely Anti-Christian! They admit that inversion: they're proud of it - and, presumably, of the deleterious effects.

Their western devotees are not only brainwashed, but naive. Their effect on mozzies has yet to be revealed...

*Maryon, Herbert. “Pattern-Welding and Damascening of Sword Blades: Part 1 Pattern-Welding.” (i)Studies in Conservation</i) 5.1 (1960): 25-37.

6 June 2011 at 19:42  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Morals follow from our values.

Tautology


Rawls is laborious and frankly not as interesting as Robert Nozick or John Locke. You are actually better off reading Kant or Popper

6 June 2011 at 19:43  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Oswin

No, I will take you at your word and apologize. I re-read your comment, and still see what I saw. But I will accept that the fault is mine.

carl

6 June 2011 at 19:56  
Anonymous non mouse said...

... Studies in Conservation

6 June 2011 at 19:56  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

"Tautology"

Nonsense.

6 June 2011 at 20:32  
Anonymous non mouse said...

THE CONUNDRUM OF THE WORKSHOPS

When the flush of a new-born sun fell first on Eden's green and gold,
Our father Adam sat under the Tree and scratched with a stick in the mould;
And the first rude sketch that the world had seen was joy to his mighty heart,
Till the Devil whispered behind the leaves, "It's pretty, but is it Art?"

Wherefore he called to his wife, and fled to fashion his work anew --
The first of his race who cared a fig for the first, most dread review;
And he left his lore to the use of his sons -- and that was a glorious gain
When the Devil chuckled "Is it Art?" in the ear of the branded Cain.

They fought and they talked in the North and the South,
they talked and they fought in the West,
Till the waters rose on the pitiful land, and the poor Red Clay had rest --
Had rest till that dank blank-canvas dawn when the dove was preened to start,
And the Devil bubbled below the keel: "It's human, but is it Art?"

They builded a tower to shiver the sky and wrench the stars apart,
Till the Devil grunted behind the bricks: "It's striking, but is it Art?"
The stone was dropped at the quarry-side and the idle derrick swung,
While each man talked of the aims of Art, and each in an alien tongue.

The tale is as old as the Eden Tree -- and new as the new-cut tooth --
For each man knows ere his lip-thatch grows he is master of Art and Truth;
And each man hears as the twilight nears, to the beat of his dying heart,
The Devil drum on the darkened pane: "You did it, but was it Art?"

We have learned to whittle the Eden Tree to the shape of a surplice-peg,
We have learned to bottle our parents twain in the yelk of an addled egg,
We know that the tail must wag the dog, for the horse is drawn by the cart;
But the Devil whoops, as he whooped of old: "It's clever, but is it Art?"

When the flicker of London sun falls faint on the Club-room's green and gold,
The sons of Adam sit them down and scratch with their pens in the mould --
They scratch with their pens in the mould of their graves,
and the ink and the anguish start,
For the Devil mutters behind the leaves: "It's pretty, but is it Art?"

Now, if we could win to the Eden Tree where the Four Great Rivers flow,
And the Wreath of Eve is red on the turf as she left it long ago,
And if we could come when the sentry slept and softly scurry through,
By the favour of God we might know as much -- as our father Adam knew!

(Rudyard Kipling)

6 June 2011 at 20:40  
Blogger DP111 said...

Its a good first step, and lets hope PM Cameron carries out the programme.

My main concern is that as Muslims see gathering opposition, they will go into full victim mode, or just keep their heads down.

Meanwhile the demographic jihad is ongoing, and in the fullness of time, Muslims will legislate for sharia, via a majority in parliament.

6 June 2011 at 20:43  
Anonymous Bede said...

"Human Rights" - I have recently seen several posters proclaiming 'Children have a right to play'. Well, it is a very good thing that children should be able to play (and probably should do so far more - especially in certain third world countries).

But I do wonder where all these proliferating 'rights' come from. Is there a factory somewhere producing them? Can anyone start proclaiming new ones? Without limit? The trouble is that all these various 'rights' start conflicting with each other, and common sense seems to have disappeared.

6 June 2011 at 21:07  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Singh said :

"There are, it seems to me, two choices: either the state becomes totalitarian or our country’s intellectuals argue the case that, as history shows on both sides of the Atlantic, Judaeo-Christianity is a friend of liberty, security and freedom.

Which path will Britain go down?"
___

In order that the desperately needed environment is re-created, so that, our country’s intellectuals argue the case, people need to refrain from denouncing other 'unknown' human beings with vile, rage inducing names.

It's prejudicial against the 'unknown' individual, and creates a highly tense atmosphere, which effectivelly frightens the 'orses, sir. The very intellectuals we want to see arguing.

I personally think the insult is on a parr with the n-word, if that word is not printable, here and now in any form, then The Accusation should be as illegal as any other race-crime....potential jail. Our citizens need protection from this job / social stigma thretening harressement.

If one group in our incluive society are duly shown resect on this subject, it's only right that the respect cuts both ways.

Anything less is biased, and that's catorgorically not the British concept I had compulsarilly drilled into me, the opposite in fact.

I can't see any real MSM debate happening until The Accusation is outlawed, the great silent debate for the last 20 years got us here, it needs fixing, urgently.

6 June 2011 at 21:28  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Dreadnaught said...

Carl are you being obtuse or just plain pig headed.

I am neither obtuse nor pig-headed. I am simply demonstrating that a bunch of people who collect themselves in common agreement do not thereby create a moral standard. They create the consensus of a bunch of people who have decided to gather themselves together. Have the courage of your convictions, Dreadnaught. Embrace the Will to Power.

In the meantime I find the accusation of a 'sense of superiority' mildly amusing since the whole of what passes for modern morality is founded upon the self-identification of the Enlightened Ones. How do I recognize 'Enlightened Thought?' I may simply observe that the 'Enlightened Ones' hold to it. And how do I recognize the 'Enlightened Ones?' Why, I simply have to observe their Enlightened Thought. Plus, they will tell me how 'Enlightened' they are. Loudly. If they are religious, they will tell me about 'a new work of the spirit.' If they are secular, they will tell me about their mighty god Reason. But never for a moment will they doubt the superiority of their Enlightened Thoughts.

carl

6 June 2011 at 21:31  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

DanJ0

What if a group of people gather themselves together and decide to justify something that is objectively Evil? Now, I admit I am stealing a base here. I am assuming the category of objective Evil. But I don't know what else to call it.

The Red Army dissolved into the Great Debauch of Rape and Pillage in 1945, and to this day no one has been punished for it. It was state policy; Stalin's reward to his Army for carrying the fight, and a deliberate punishment inflicted on his invaders (and anyone else in the way.) Officers who tried to stop it were arrested. The Soviets were immune from War Crimes Charges because they had the good fortune to win. So why was this wrong?

I don't know anyone who will not say "Rape is always and everywhere wrong." And yet here we have state policy that contradicts this assertion. The moral nature of rape is not dependent upon the observer, and yet that is the only conclusion your worldview allows. To say "I think rape is always and everywhere wrong" would be instantly answered with "And who the Hell are you? Bring your women to me for I earned the right to them at Stalingrad."

carl

6 June 2011 at 21:54  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Carl, would you be okay with your wife or daughter being raped? Is there anything about consent which might be relevant there. Violence too to achieve pleasure at another's expense? The reaching of a consensus is about creating normative rules in a society of people. It is the arguments used to reach consensus that are important.

You know, I have emotional responses to various things. For instance, I had tears running down my face recently watching a video clip His Grace posted about the Arab Spring. I'm not unusual there of course. What I felt was sympathy and outrage. Might there be something there which is common to almost all of us in varying degrees from which one might argue? Or did I just learn that response from the Bible via my parents etc?

6 June 2011 at 22:08  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

David Hume might help a bit here, by the way.

6 June 2011 at 22:13  
Blogger Owl said...

Carl,

Thank you for your insights.

I sometimes get the impression that two sides (Christianity and Islam) are being manouvered into a conflict situation by seemingly thoughtless immigration policies.

The more the conflict escalates, the more the third side (secularism) laughs.

The hollow scoffers will show that only "reason" can solve mankinds woes.

At this point the totalitarian state can be created with no opposition.

The Fabian society supplies the intellectual leadership in bringing about the secular state. Their stated aim is to marginalise religion (faith schools are a current target).

Their problem is that too many people know what's going on.

The wolf in sheep's clothing is no longer unseen. The shepherd is watching.

6 June 2011 at 22:50  
Anonymous not a machine said...

Thankyou non mouse for that.

Tonights "all overseen by machines of loving grace" was very challenging and despite the disturbing difficulties was errm wow .
The revealing of consequences is notable in itself ,the fact that one can play video games killing and battling , when in actual fact the minerals required to make the machines were really killing people is all too despairing .
Pryces conversion to a total christian concept and his lonely suicide is very troubling , as he seemed to be dealing with a guilt of complete knowledge.
The coldwar computer modelling and cybernetics has given rise to machines ,economic ones that incorporate us ,is an idea that at first seems mad but complete.
The ideas behind it are compelling because the computing power offers to fullfill it .
The ability to control populations is perhaps nothing new , there does appear to be this mass effect which is used by us. Yet even if the idea of genetic transfer computer seems correct , we are at different stages of life which we ousrselves have to reason/comprehend . That perhaps is true horror of inventing any autonamous/subliminal system above real life workings.
It was nice to see prof Dawkins intuiting the power of natural selection from the plieocene , I can grasp how he might see a humanist Darwinian ancient equation at work, but isnt it horrifying to consider that to create his new order so much of natural selection is being subverted just for a totalitarian idea.
machine in the monkey , monkey in the machine is troubling isn it .No need for god , as god was just an side equation before computers came along and showed us how it it really is ????.
My observation that the new abtsract way we communicate was having on people , made me question this ,if attention is replacing love then Dawkins and co may have missed somthing.

I know that god exists , it comes through as people and the natural world , and yet we are now living apart from it , pure philispohical ideas perhaps behave simialry.
I am sure those who love christ must not lose faith , this new order is by no means safe or complete , somthing is being traded and processed into somthing else.
does it not mention in revelation , that it will appear to have all the power of god but not refer/worship god .....

6 June 2011 at 22:57  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

DanJ0

Is there anything about consent which might be relevant there.

Evidently not. Consent was not obtained by the Soviet gov't nor even considered. The Soviet state declared the action moral and legal without any consideration of the attendant consequences. Do they not have the authority to make such a declaration even as you have the authority to condemn it?

It is the arguments used to reach consensus that are important.
Yes, I understand why you say this. You keep making abstract arguments about the behavior when I am asking you about authority. I know you can create systems to justify this action or that. I want to know the authority by which you would establish that system. You can't just blithely assume some abstract notion of consensus. Your arguments mean nothing when confronted by one man with a gun and the will to use it.

carl

6 June 2011 at 23:19  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Carl Jacobs : 19:56 - my post seemed up-front and obvious to me, but thank you anyway.

Oh, I've just noticed your post of 19:11 - I have no idea what you mean; it all seems pretty grudging...

6 June 2011 at 23:54  
Anonymous carl jacobs said...

Oswin

I didn't intend it to be grudging. I genuinely believe that I wronged you, and that's why I offered an apology. I have been thinking about how this happened. The proximate cause was the association of 'de-Islamification' with the phrase 'long knives.' That second phrase has one and only one context for me - June 30, 1934. In retrospect, I doubt you intended that connection. That is why I said the fault was mine. I created a connection that you did not intend.

I was wrong, and I apologize.

carl

7 June 2011 at 00:10  
Anonymous Atlas shrugged said...

I have a theory.

I wish people to imagine that there exists a power acting on the affairs of man that may be The One True God, the Creator of The Universe, or maybe something similar but quite subordinate to such a high and unknowable entity.

For example a vastly older and therefore technologically superior civilization either originating from this planet some time in the very distant past, from a quite distinct planet, solar system, or indeed galaxy. Which is also a creation of The One True God, but may not be exactly doing his will, whatever that may be.

In other words, The Unseen Hand, acting with an All Seeing Eye, which has been constantly watching and periodically interfering with this place for possibly as many as hundreds of millions of our years.

That it is these characters that have been responsible for the replenishing of The Earth maybe several times. The Sons of God.

All of what we see today as our more naturally created species, of plant and animal, as well us, the current human race, adding up to being the latest version of their what could be described as a long standing scientific experiment, or maybe even, No1 prime time soap-opera. Who knows?

Certainly there exists little or nothing which contradicts my theory in Holy scripture, indeed much that very much backs it up.

There is also nothing in modern scientific knowledge which contradicts it either, indeed an ever increasing amount that backs it up.

Perhaps many years ago these characters got more involved in the day to day things of this planet and actually sort to get involved in politics, for whatever reason, at the very highest level.

This partly achieved by influencing in some way, the thoughts and therefore actions of the great priest hoods, and therefore the Royal families, and politicians of this world, that these great thinkers, oligarchs, demigods or scientists, have always controlled. Francis Bacon, for example.

In other words the truly 'great people' of history that have in general more secretly piloted The Great Ship of Destiny, for as long as recorded civilization has existed.

Just a theory you understand. However far less stupid then Darwins Theory of Evolution, which has absolutely nothing backing it up, and never has had anything.

On the subject of Islam and all that may appear to be going with it.

Bare in mind at least some of the above, and you may just start to make sense of what is really going on. Or maybe your heads will just explode. Either way, it may be a help towards a solution.

7 June 2011 at 00:34  
Blogger len said...

I think one of the problems facing the West is for the West to come to an understanding of the 'Arab mindset'.
The West is trying to understand the Arab, and particularly the Islamic attitudes with a Western mindset and a Western approach to solving cultural differences, and disagreements.The West assumes that if one is reasonable to others they will respond in the same way. Not so.
At the risk of being accused of being 'Islamophobic'I would say the Islamic /Arab/ foremost priorities are Pride,Honour and Revenge.
I think our British attributes of tolerance and our love of personal freedoms are being used against us by people who want to impose their own morality and cultures on us.
Freedom has been bought by us with the blood of our ancestors and we should not throw that away and sacrifice that on the altar of Political Correctness.
There is an old saying 'use it or lose it'and this was never so true as to our freedoms, freedom of speech, freedom of religion,freedom to express and retain our own culture.

7 June 2011 at 01:34  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Carl: "Yes, I understand why you say this. You keep making abstract arguments about the behavior when I am asking you about authority. I know you can create systems to justify this action or that. I want to know the authority by which you would establish that system. You can't just blithely assume some abstract notion of consensus. Your arguments mean nothing when confronted by one man with a gun and the will to use it."

Your focus on authority is because you want to use your god hypothesis to head up your concept of an absolute morality. I understand that to a point. I realise that many religionists are bewildered, and possibly frightened, by the notion that we're on our own. Creating an abstract place holder for the authority you want and calling it god is merely a device to reach the situation you want. You still have to get people to buy into it through consensus, or at the point of a gun if you like. Afterall, your god doesn't seem to intervene even when the most awful things happen.

I'll try again with my Hume-type argument and see if I can explain it better. When stuff happens, people usually have an emotional response to it. We're not pure reasoning machines. We have language too. So, when I see (say) an injustice and I have an emotional response it empowers my moral reasoning. I have a moral sense, in other words. And I can share that. I can say to my fellow observers: "When you saw that, did you feel that the victim was treated badly? Was that because you thought his aggressor owed him a duty which he reneged on?" etc. This is coming from our shared humanity and our understanding of the human condition.

The emotion, the reasoning, the sharing, the creation of normative rules, the propagation of those rules, the deriving of new rules based on previous ones, the modifying of existing rules following new arguments ... this is how we can arrive at a ethical consensus even if the underlying morals are a bit abstract or diverse across the population.

So, the authority essentially derives from the people but it is grounded in our shared humanity. The people can create the means to enforce it too. I think you mistake authority for power in your examples. A totalitarian state which controls its people does not necessarily have the authority to do so even if it has guns. A similar sort of argument about authority is used to justify our democratic system.

7 June 2011 at 05:53  
Anonymous IanCad said...

A long one YG. And spot on!

7 June 2011 at 06:12  
Anonymous Voyager said...

David Hume might help a bit here, by the way.

He has some interesting ideas on gold and specie money, was an atheist, but has really the same limits of Empiricism as most of the island-dwellers.

So, the authority essentially derives from the people but it is grounded in our shared humanity.

I think you will find MOST people in Britain want to execute murderers and traitors but Politicians do not. Ergo Politicians are Immoral and should be regarded as treasonous

7 June 2011 at 06:47  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Mr Davis said 6 June 16.20

‘The human values that predate all religions… are biologically driven.’

If they are biologically driven (determinism) then all that happened in the holocaust was that six million biologically driven units were terminated.

To be determined means that you have no free-will and therefore cannot exercise moral choices.

Can you not see that your world-view shows, with repeated banality, that you are no better than the murderers?

7 June 2011 at 07:27  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Here we have, from DanJO, emotional determinism:

'So, when I see (say) an injustice and I have an emotional response it empowers my moral reasoning.'

The Nazis cleraly thought in the same way.

7 June 2011 at 07:37  
Anonymous Voyager said...

The Nazis cleraly thought in the same way.

and within the constraints of their system they behaved in accordance with agreed values which were disputed at Nuremberg by Americans and Britons who found their shared values with Stalin were at odds with those of the Nazis - so those of Stalin, Churchill and Truman were imposed instead on Germans in Germany.

How was it different from Judge Jefferys and his "Bloody Assizes" ? In fact was Nuremberg in any sense "moral" ?

7 June 2011 at 08:18  
Anonymous bluedog said...

Mr Atlas @ 00.34 said,'Perhaps many years ago these characters got more involved in the day to day things of this planet and actually sort to get involved in politics, for whatever reason, at the very highest level.'

Should we read this as Little Green Men?

Your Grace, your communicant is not laughing either. After all we have spent billions on space missions (Voyager) and telescopes (Hubble etc) looking for somebody to talk to. So far we may have been lucky not to get a reply, but you never know your luck in the Milky Way. Indeed, His Holiness the Pope has moved recently to accomodate the possibility of other forms of life in the universe, as has the UN. It only remains for the EU to accredit the Baroness Ashton as High Representative for Inter-Galactic Relations and the stage will be set for the scoop of the millenium.

But seriously, if Mr Atlas is referring to LGM, he may have just put his finger on the elephant in the room.

What if?

7 June 2011 at 08:59  
Anonymous DanJ0 said...

D Singh: "Here we have, from DanJO, emotional determinism"

No. You have lost the meaning along the way. But at least it gave you an opportunity to bring in the Nazis again so you succeed where it counts.

7 June 2011 at 09:25  
Anonymous DanJ0 said...

Voyager: "I think you will find MOST people in Britain want to execute murderers and traitors but Politicians do not. Ergo Politicians are Immoral and should be regarded as treasonous"

Well that's a new way to use 'ergo' there, presumably meaning the conclusion does not follow from the argument in this case.

7 June 2011 at 09:30  
Blogger len said...

Danjo, He who always wants the last word probably has a first word that carries very little weight or substance.

I await your response.

7 June 2011 at 13:40  
Blogger len said...

Danjo,
I am not going to respond......damn I did .

7 June 2011 at 16:18  
Anonymous Oswin said...

Atlas shrugged @ 0:34

May I recommend to you ''The Invisible Hand'' by Victor Dunstan; a tad out on his dates, but fascinating nevertheless.

Carl Jacobs 0:10

Thank you Sir.

7 June 2011 at 16:19  
OpenID ecks why said...

islam is dangerous no matter how it is packaged. muslims do not assimilate into western society because islam is a theocracy and demands supremacy.

the twin fogs of political correctness & ignorance must be dispersed before western society better understands this menace. even a brief review of islamic theology & history quickly exposes the deadly roots of this evil ideology.

see the links in the pdf version below for more accurate info about islam
==========

islam is a horrible ideology for human rights

5 key things about islam

1. mythical beliefs - all religions have these (faith) because its part of being a religion: having beliefs without proof until after the believer dies. the problem is people will believe almost anything.

2. totalitarianism - islam has no seperation of church and state: sharia law governs all. there is no free will in islam: only submission to the will of allah as conveniently determined by the imams who spew vapors to feather their own nests. there are no moderate muslims: they all support sharia law.

3. violence - islam leads the pack of all religions in violent tenets for their ideology & history: having eternal canonical imperatives for supremacy at all costs and calling for violence & intimidation as basic tools to achieve these goals.

4. dishonesty - only islam has dishonesty as a fundamental tenet: this stems from allah speaking to mohamhead & abrogation in the koran which is used to explain how mo's peaceful early life was superseded by his warlord role later.

5. misogyny - present day islam is still rooted in 8th century social ethics: treating females as property of men good only for children, severely limiting their activities, dressing them in shower curtains and worse.

conclusions ??

there really are NO redeeming qualities for this muddled pile of propaganda.

islam is just another fascist totalitarian ideology used by power hungry fanatics on yet another quest for worldwide domination and includes all the usual human rights abuses & suppression of freedoms.

graphics version
http://img829.imageshack.us/img829/5792/dangero.jpg

1 page pdf version - do file/download 6kb viewer doesn't show fonts well, has better fonts header footer links, great for emailing printing etc
http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&pid=explorer&chrome=true&srcid=0B_UyNP-72AVKYWNiNTFlYTEtMTA1ZC00YjhiLTljMDUtMDhhNDE0NDMzNmYz

10 June 2011 at 19:24  

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