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10 Easy Steps To Save The World...by Samharris


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I used to enjoy reading Sam at one point....but lately his work is sounding much like the 'extremist' (meaning off his head) he believes is the enemy. That last paragraph sealed it for me.....WTF is he thinking? The 'dogma of multiculturalism".....What is the 'solution' - Nationism? and rabbit holeing groups of people in Gettos' or internment camps - make the world into a "Gautamano Bay"?

 

Why not ask the better question instead of simply blaming it all on 'religion'.....What is so shit hot about the "west" that is so 'civilised' ? & & Why do certain groups of peoples find it difficult to assimilate and feel part of the community.? ie. the "jews", "blacks", "muslims"...Derrr!

 

 

Head-in-the-Sand Liberals

Western civilization really is at risk from Muslim extremists.

By Sam Harris

 

SAM HARRIS is the author of The End of Faith: Religion, Terror and the Future of Reason. His next book, Letter to a Christian Nation, will be published this week by Knopf. (www.samharris.org)

 

 

September 18, 2006

 

TWO YEARS AGO I published a book highly critical of religion, "The End of Faith." In it, I argued that the world's major religions are genuinely incompatible, inevitably cause conflict and now prevent the emergence of a viable, global civilization. In response, I have received many thousands of letters and e-mails from priests, journalists, scientists, politicians, soldiers, rabbis, actors, aid workers, students — from people young and old who occupy every point on the spectrum of belief and nonbelief.

 

This has offered me a special opportunity to see how people of all creeds and political persuasions react when religion is criticized. I am here to report that liberals and conservatives respond very differently to the notion that religion can be a direct cause of human conflict.

 

This difference does not bode well for the future of liberalism.

 

Perhaps I should establish my liberal bone fides at the outset. I'd like to see taxes raised on the wealthy, drugs decriminalized and homosexuals free to marry. I also think that the Bush administration deserves most of the criticism it has received in the last six years — especially with respect to its waging of the war in Iraq, its scuttling of science and its fiscal irresponsibility.

 

But my correspondence with liberals has convinced me that liberalism has grown dangerously out of touch with the realities of our world — specifically with what devout Muslims actually believe about the West, about paradise and about the ultimate ascendance of their faith.

 

On questions of national security, I am now as wary of my fellow liberals as I am of the religious demagogues on the Christian right. This may seem like frank acquiescence to the charge that "liberals are soft on terrorism." It is, and they are.

 

A cult of death is forming in the Muslim world — for reasons that are perfectly explicable in terms of the Islamic doctrines of martyrdom and jihad. The truth is that we are not fighting a "war on terror." We are fighting a pestilential theology and a longing for paradise.

 

This is not to say that we are at war with all Muslims. But we are absolutely at war with those who believe that death in defense of the faith is the highest possible good, that cartoonists should be killed for caricaturing the prophet and that any Muslim who loses his faith should be butchered for apostasy.

 

Unfortunately, such religious extremism is not as fringe a phenomenon as we might hope. Numerous studies have found that the most radicalized Muslims tend to have better-than-average educations and economic opportunities.

 

Given the degree to which religious ideas are still sheltered from criticism in every society, it is actually possible for a person to have the economic and intellectual resources to build a nuclear bomb — and to believe that he will get 72 virgins in paradise. And yet, despite abundant evidence to the contrary, liberals continue to imagine that Muslim terrorism springs from economic despair, lack of education and American militarism.

 

At its most extreme, liberal denial has found expression in a growing subculture of conspiracy theorists who believe that the atrocities of 9/11 were orchestrated by our own government. A nationwide poll conducted by the Scripps Survey Research Center at Ohio University found that more than a third of Americans suspect that the federal government "assisted in the 9/11 terrorist attacks or took no action to stop them so the United States could go to war in the Middle East;" 16% believe that the twin towers collapsed not because fully-fueled passenger jets smashed into them but because agents of the Bush administration had secretly rigged them to explode.

 

Such an astonishing eruption of masochistic unreason could well mark the decline of liberalism, if not the decline of Western civilization. There are books, films and conferences organized around this phantasmagoria, and they offer an unusually clear view of the debilitating dogma that lurks at the heart of liberalism: Western power is utterly malevolent, while the powerless people of the Earth can be counted on to embrace reason and tolerance, if only given sufficient economic opportunities.

 

I don't know how many more engineers and architects need to blow themselves up, fly planes into buildings or saw the heads off of journalists before this fantasy will dissipate. The truth is that there is every reason to believe that a terrifying number of the world's Muslims now view all political and moral questions in terms of their affiliation with Islam. This leads them to rally to the cause of other Muslims no matter how sociopathic their behavior. This benighted religious solidarity may be the greatest problem facing civilization and yet it is regularly misconstrued, ignored or obfuscated by liberals.

 

Given the mendacity and shocking incompetence of the Bush administration — especially its mishandling of the war in Iraq — liberals can find much to lament in the conservative approach to fighting the war on terror. Unfortunately, liberals hate the current administration with such fury that they regularly fail to acknowledge just how dangerous and depraved our enemies in the Muslim world are.

 

Recent condemnations of the Bush administration's use of the phrase "Islamic fascism" are a case in point. There is no question that the phrase is imprecise — Islamists are not technically fascists, and the term ignores a variety of schisms that exist even among Islamists — but it is by no means an example of wartime propaganda, as has been repeatedly alleged by liberals.

 

In their analyses of U.S. and Israeli foreign policy, liberals can be relied on to overlook the most basic moral distinctions. For instance, they ignore the fact that Muslims intentionally murder noncombatants, while we and the Israelis (as a rule) seek to avoid doing so. Muslims routinely use human shields, and this accounts for much of the collateral damage we and the Israelis cause; the political discourse throughout much of the Muslim world, especially with respect to Jews, is explicitly and unabashedly genocidal.

 

Given these distinctions, there is no question that the Israelis now hold the moral high ground in their conflict with Hamas and Hezbollah. And yet liberals in the United States and Europe often speak as though the truth were otherwise.

 

We are entering an age of unchecked nuclear proliferation and, it seems likely, nuclear terrorism. There is, therefore, no future in which aspiring martyrs will make good neighbors for us. Unless liberals realize that there are tens of millions of people in the Muslim world who are far scarier than Dick Cheney, they will be unable to protect civilization from its genuine enemies.

 

Increasingly, Americans will come to believe that the only people hard-headed enough to fight the religious lunatics of the Muslim world are the religious lunatics of the West. Indeed, it is telling that the people who speak with the greatest moral clarity about the current wars in the Middle East are members of the Christian right, whose infatuation with biblical prophecy is nearly as troubling as the ideology of our enemies. Religious dogmatism is now playing both sides of the board in a very dangerous game.

 

While liberals should be the ones pointing the way beyond this Iron Age madness, they are rendering themselves increasingly irrelevant. Being generally reasonable and tolerant of diversity, liberals should be especially sensitive to the dangers of religious literalism. But they aren't.

 

The same failure of liberalism is evident in Western Europe, where the dogma of multiculturalism has left a secular Europe very slow to address the looming problem of religious extremism among its immigrants. The people who speak most sensibly about the threat that Islam poses to Europe are actually fascists. Wtf?

 

To say that this does not bode well for liberalism is an understatement: It does not bode well for the future of civilization.

 

 

 

Copyright 2006 Los Angeles Times

read here

 

this is dangerous stuff!

 

turn back the clock about 50 years and you have the same 'ideology' against the 'jews'.......

Multiculturism verses....what Nationalist ? (another extremist political religion to replace the churchy/temple type religion........that's crap! )

 

....er..remember who the 'fascists' were back then in Europe....and how a few too many idiots thought it was a great idea to 'eridicate' a certain group of people.

 

Fucking hell....people are bloodthristy morons! Need I spell it out -

.... the jew hater to the muslim hater of today?

what's the plan.....

( ....why don't you start setting up the ovens mate?)

 

better still.....hole up people in getto's and internment camps. But I guess that thing has also been revisited by the US in the Gautanamo experiment.

 

Yep....Sam wants to save the world. *ho hum*

 

...it is interesting to observe how people react when their 'beliefs" are critised....however 'liberal's aren't quite so 'liberal' then are they?

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I actually agree with him on the dangers of Islam. It doesn't matter a jot if the "majority" of Muslims are peaceful. It's that very noisy minority I care about. I sincerely believe that this struggle between the mostly secular west and the theocratic Muslim middle east has the potential to destroy us, just as the Cold War conflict between the US and the USSR did. The difference is that "MAD" was a concept both sides understood. The Muslims who danced in the street on 9/11 and who outraged by a bleeding CARTOON don't understand MAD; they embrace madness. And part of me thinks that if the gloves are off for them, then we should take the gloves off and attack their religion -- because it sometimes seems that we don't have time to wait for their support to be eroded by time. But in doing so, we may only fan the flames, so I don't know what to do about them. Intolerant religions must be done away with when they show themselves to be a threat to humanity. My digust at the brainwashing I received in the Christian church doesn't measure up to my disgust for radical Islam. Islam means submission, not peace. Islam is no religion of peace -- tell that to the Meccans that were killed when Islam's founder returned after being rejected.

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Except for "Israeli Moral High Ground," I agree with everything Sam says. It amazes me that some who've thrown their religious garbage in the sewer still uphold this invisible shield of respect toward religious beliefs, especially those that can be quite dangerous.

 

"Thou shalt not disrespect the faith of others, even when the acts of that faith may directly endanger your person, your family, or your right to exist and hold independent thoughts."

 

That's what it is - a refusal to believe that Islam has anything to do with it. Have you read the Koran? Sam spends a good deal of his book quoting the Koran, word for word, illustrating the absense of vagueries and metaphor that have allowed Judeo-Christianity to move away from their violent pasts. Oh, but I guess we should go with the flow, and compare Shia-Islam with Buddhism, because all religion is sweet and wonderful, and full of roses and honey-sweetened lemons.

 

For those that bothered to read End of Faith, Sam doesn't shy away from the violence of Judeo-Christianity's past - he shows how the West was able to mature past all of that before we had the ability to desimmate the land of didn't believe in Yahweh/Jesus with nukes. Iran, propretier of many terrorists acts around the world, is desperately seeking nuclear alternatives -- and if they're willing to fly 747 into American skyscrapers, what sense of reason and logic are you hoping for from them when they attain it?

 

I do believe that many fellow liberals want the bombs so they can finally be washed of their liberal guilt with the absoluting power of a splitting atom. Fine. Just go do it in the desert somewhere. Some of still happen to think that the West is a little better than places where they behead or hang homosexuals in public arenas during festivals or for sport.

 

I'm also amused by the "majority of muslims" comments heard in the public discourse. Sure, the majority of Muslims in MALAYASIA are peaceful, but the majority of the populace in places like Iran, Iraq, Syria, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt have bought into this revolutionary version of their faith -- as evidenced by the dancing on the streets after 9/11.

 

I used to buy into the whole "poor palestinians" crap up until I read Sam's book. My pseudo-sympathy always seemed to be lacking something, but it completely disappeared when Sam spelled it out with the accuracy of a mathematical equation. They hate us because of Israel. They hate us because of our troops in Arabia. They hate us because of our cultural dominance. They hate us because of our relative secularism. Please don't start with the US imperialism crap -- if that's what started it all, why weren't they joined by the Vietnamese -- the one country we chemically scraped clean before bending down to shit on it with carpet bombing? Why weren't they joined by legions from Central and South America who've bore the brunt of our big stick since the 1800's?

 

The old math doesn't work anymore. They hate us for the above reasons, and think that we should die because of it. If you think Americans should die because of a cartoon, because of Madonna, because of McDonalds, or because we all don't bow to Mecca (or "disrespect those who do"), . . . Well, I don't know what to say.

 

A lot of liberals are losing their credibility in an age when the secular left should be leading us out of the wilderness -- from Michael Moore to Cindy Sheehan on down the line. You can flush them both down the toilet as far as I'm concerned.

 

I remember when the cartoon incident happened . . . Bill Maher questioned the logic behind mocking Islamic beliefs. wtf? Western freedoms now have to adhere to a Muslim code of decency, or people must die? This is where the left gets looney, unfortunately.

 

Irrational beliefs create irrational actions . . . there is no magic wand that absolves murderous actions wrapped in the cloak of religiosity. This is what Sam's book says -- nothing more or less.

 

And now, I'll leave us with a picture of Iranian Islamic "tolerance."

 

iranqueersexecuted.jpg

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I most definitely believe that Queer Texan is a most reasonable and well spoken person. I hope that everyone reads what QT has to say. Please read the post above me.

 

Snookums I hope that you in particular take to heart what has been said here.

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Please don't start with the US imperialism crap -- if that's what started it all, why weren't they joined by the Vietnamese -- the one country we chemically scraped clean before bending down to shit on it with carpet bombing? Why weren't they joined by legions from Central and South America who've bore the brunt of our big stick since the 1800's?

 

This is a non sequitur I think. The reason those countries did not join in is because being used and abused by the US is not the type of common bond that raises rebels to action. Common religion on the other hand is a much more powerful motivator.

 

I'll agree with you that there are extremists and I agree with your thoughts in general on the religion. This does not excuse the US for its past and present actions any more than two wrongs don't make a right.

 

I'd be willing to bet that most Muslims don't practice their faith any more seriously than the average American practices Christianity. I would go further to argue that most would not act on the violent tenents of their faith, but that by our current actions we are making it much more of an attractive option for them to do so. I personally know a ton of Muslims and not one of them hated me or the US because of who we are or are not. I'm a little surprised at the binary position you are taking on this issue. It's out of the ordinary from your other posts.

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Well said, Queer Texan.

 

Unfortunately, here in the safety of our borders we get so caught up in the political rhetoric coming from the left and the right that we fail to recognize the true enemy. I use the word "enemy" to describe those who desire to kill us and/or take away our freedom.

 

The right goes on and on about how the left is in bed with the terrorists, don't really love America, want to institute socialism or (gasp!) communism, etc.

 

The left accuses the right of wanting to starve and kill old people, children and the poor, of being fascists, or wanting to institute a theocracy, etc.

 

The fact is, the two are much more like each other than "political expediency" permits them to admit. If they really believed their own rhetoric they spew at one another, James Carville and Mary Matalin couldn't crawl in bed together every night. Think about it....

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This is a non sequitur I think. The reason those countries did not join in is because being used and abused by the US is not the type of common bond that raises rebels to action. Common religion on the other hand is a much more powerful motivator.

 

Absolutely . . . religion can motivate Turks, Egyptians and Saudis (countries we've never occupied) into flying planes into American buildings . . . nothing else could do it.

 

I'll agree with you that there are extremists and I agree with your thoughts in general on the religion. This does not excuse the US for its past and present actions any more than two wrongs don't make a right.

 

Absolutely, and this is where I part company (as does Sam Harris) with the gung-ho "Iraq must die" bullshit from the Bushit administration. I am not one that believes in the "City on a Hill" crap for one minute. Our nation was built by white elitists who didn't want to pay a tea tax to the King -- and so they built on on land they stoled from Natives, and continued to bribe and steal from others until they had "sea to shining sea." I agree we have "sinned" against the world, but I'm not into the "expunge me" crowd of the extreme left. I think there is an element of the middle and left that want a more rational government, a more responsible government -- something that won't happen if we let the Falwell crowd to completely take over here, or if we allow extremists from abroad to commit their ultimate American apocylpse. Are we supposed to let it happen . . . because we deserve it?

 

I'd be willing to bet that most Muslims don't practice their faith any more seriously than the average American practices Christianity. I would go further to argue that most would not act on the violent tenents of their faith, but that by our current actions we are making it much more of an attractive option for them to do so. I personally know a ton of Muslims and not one of them hated me or the US because of who we are or are not. I'm a little surprised at the binary position you are taking on this issue. It's out of the ordinary from your other posts.

 

I work with a few, too. Interesting -- most that tend to make it over here are moderate, pro-Western, etc. I would imagine that there aren't too many "death-to-America" types that want to drive taxis in Manhattan. Having said that, we can't turn our ears off to what's happening overseas. Between the extremists Ayatollahs in the Middle East and our own President, there is a ground-swelling of a holy Jihad against us . . . they want to see us die, and they are more than willing to die themselves for it. You can't look at the suicide-bombers (who are highly revered - even among those who would never do it themselves) and say this is "moderate" behavior, or just a response to aggression. For me, the Palestinians lost any "innocence" they might have had when they engaged in killing other innocents.

 

I'm not for genocide or any other shit like that, personally, this is what I believe we should do. 1) Pull out of the Middle East (we can't do any worse, well, actually we could - maybe that's why we should leave yesterday) 2) Immediately end support of Israel - let them fight the battle they started, 3) and make a solemn oath to the Ayatollahs of the world: eye for an eye X 10. A bomb goes off in Manhattan or LA? We nuke Tehran, and every other Arab capital. Period. No negotiations, no talks. Action for action.

 

We aren't playing with people who've bought into reason. Extreme Islam is a CULT, and the words of their spiritual leaders are like the words of God to them. In several of these countries, it is NOT a minority, it's a growing majority -- they control the spirituality of Iran and a slight majority of Iraq as well. Perhaps it's because I know a little about cults -- I was raised in one, and there was a time . . . before I went to college . . . that I would have followed my pastor over a cliff if he had promised God was on the other side waiting.

 

As far as any direction I've taken . . . all I can go with is what I see on the news, what I hear people saying around the world, and the way people around the world interpret it. We see Middle Easterners struggle, and in Palestine, they've really gotten a raw deal from Israel. Israel should have never happened -- but, the reaction to that has gone overboard and has turned into rabid spiritual suicide. The entire "nation" of Palestine is willing to die for dirt, even if they can't live to see it -- and Iran is willing to pay for the bombs and vests to make it so. Two wrongs don't make a right? Absolutely -- it goes in this case as well.

 

If I'm a bit on tilt . . . it's because I'm scared to death. Bush has totally screwed any leadership ability we had with the Iraq "fight-my-daddy's-battles" thing, and now we've squandered our capital to mount an international containment of Islamic extremism. And so, what will happen will happen, and no one will be able to do a damn thing about it (or believe that it can happen) until it actually does. And -- if they nuke LA, Houston or NY . . . well, then, they will have won in more ways then we can fathom. Of course, we could economically survive and recover -- without question, but politically? Our nation is so divided that such an act could spark open riots in the streets -- something that would require martial law to contain. Where would it end? A few riots? Open revolution? A dissolution of the Constitution?

 

It's almost as certain as algebra.

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Queer Texan about sums it up for me also. I do not find much to disagree with in Sam's article. Since QT is a much better writer than me, I'll just say "What he said..."...

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I'm not the best speller/writer on the planet but that doesn't mean my opinions are of any less value than anyones.....I like what Vigile-del-foulco expresses re: that the bet is that most "muslims' are fairly easy going - average people .......just like you and me - they want the best for their kids and to be left alone to get on with life.

 

So....yeah. I'm easy going.....and don't want to get into a rabid debate about it all. I'm happy for other's to disagree with my stance on Sam's article etc. I don't feel the need to change anyone's mind so it would be great to avoid making this personal or a 'battle' to death - a 'political conversion"- or spittling to opposing camps. That's what I see is happening around the globe in regards to dialogue of this nature or topic - religion. I find that ironic don't you?

 

Does it really fucking :grin: matter - what matters is my blood pressure so relax. Big Deal! ....Apparenly I have a different perception of it all. ...or more to the point - a less popular view. That's cool too...

 

Here's a bit more of a rave....in note form, from where I sit....

 

Australia is another kettle of fish - a different country than the US...and I'm coming from the view that things are not so grim. Multiculturalism works ...............The fact is we are all migrants here. I've seen a shift over the years towards many types of 'migrant' ....luckily the "white australia policy" was abolished.

 

However when I read stuff like this....(from http://www.theocracywatch.org/satan2.htm)

 

If the Religious Right gains dominion over society, we will all have to deal with Satan because he plays such a dominant role in their belief system. Anyone who is not born-again is vulnerable to Satan, for they are lacking the protective shield of Christ. The world is clearly divided into "good" and "evil", "Christ" and "Satan." R.J. Rushdoony, the man who is considered the father of Reconstructionism called on his followers to "administer justice upon all disobedience in every area of life where we encounter it. To deny the cultural mandate is to deny Christ and to surrender the world to the devil." (The Institutes of Biblical Law, 1973)

 

Dr. Elaine Pagels, professor of History of Religion at Princeton University wrote a book titled The Origins of Satan. She explains in an interview with Ellen Kushner on WGBH, Boston Public Radio, what can happen when a society has a 'good vs. evil' world view:

 

"Every group and tribe has had ways of feeling superior to every other. I mean, every anthropologist knows that, but what's really different here is that you have a moral view - 'we are good, and you are evil.'

 

 

It reminds me of the state of mind of the Religous Right in the US and what is going on as part of the debate of multiculturalism. Its outrageous.! In short the 'us & them' bullshit- and wouldn't you say...extremist, cultish & any other terms you care to fling at it. (& god bless amerikka...yeah I'm tense about that as I am over any terror attack )

 

To me...the "MUSLIM" has been demonised and satanised by popular consensus in western society....& largely promoted by the USA.

 

I think the US....the Bush administration has handled the "Terror" situation very badly from the very start of 9/11 - calling it a 'war on terror'...rather than tackling the problems in a way that differenciates between a 'crime' which is what I believe the act was....and a full on military assault.

 

Bush imo...has used the 'war on terror'.....time and time again (as the Aust government has)....to shift focus from local and more pressing social issues. (commonly called fuckups ie.where to put all the homeless..not to mention Katrina) The 9/11 event although tragic...has reached mythical proportions in the minds of some....yep almost a religion. Has anyone noticed the same reverence towards other world shattering events that has claimed many more lives of humanbeings? Nope.! Imo...9/11 has been formed into a point of 'nationism' and it sickens me. I bet Bush would like to forget how his 'presidency' was struggling before 9/11.

 

My 'hate' of Bush or the 'Liberal' Govenment lead by John Howard (do American's know his name...btw)....is not distorting my view of the world. I see and hear all the lies. And I also have a better memory than I'm given credit for in any democracy'.... Remember the lie - and the reason why the 'war' in Iraq was deemed to be such a necessity.................all those weapons of mass destruction.? Phewwweee! stinky!

 

Is the world 'SAFER' since the "WAR ON TERROR'.......NO I don't think so. But that's another subject.

 

anyway.....Sam writes :-

 

Given the degree to which religious ideas are still sheltered from criticism in every society,

 

Yes I agree!!!!! But that's where it he comes undone.........why does he stop focusing on the home front (US) and the Christian 'taliban' and move off shore to the radical Islamists in Europe?. He more or less suggests that ALL MUSLIMS are at fault (even thou' he make a small effort to say not)- especially when he sites the 'european' multicultural situtation....to quote...".where the dogma of multiculturalism has left a secular Europe very slow to address the looming problem of religious extremism among its immigrants" That is a slap dash effort imo....It also suggests that religious issues are at the root & that's it. ? Very silly........what about the social /economic issues involved in immigration policy. Not all human relationships revolve around religion!

 

Also one point that disheartens me no end.........how long does it take for a group of people to become assimilated into a new country and how does it happen - what efforts and responsiblities are on both sides - the immigrant and their new country? I would criticize the article...and point out that the 'jews' who were targets of the fascists - were Hungarian, Poles, Germans, Romanians, etc....citizens of Europe & most of them did not 'practise' a religion. Its was a 'RACIST/political' - ISSUE'. & not a religious one!!!!............The same thing with American's when does a person loose their old cultural identity and call themselves an American? Why are the 'muslims' targets now? We have 'muslims' here in Oz who speak with an AUstralian accent.....generations of immigrants. Its not fair imo...to label people like that! Is 'immigrant' a dirty word? Does every historical political event require a 'scapegoat'?

 

We have a strange situation here in aust at the moment....(largely as a result of a Liberal majority) of razor wired migrant detention centres and the "market forces" (sarcasm) .& the importation of overseas 'worker's' to fill jobs that australian workers are loosing because its 'cheaper' to import workers. Now...that may sound old news to an American' but here its a relatively new concept. Btw...those detection centres.....are a profit making American Industry - profits go to the US as far as I know.

 

The other....point of interest to me in the Sam article....is that he plays along & 'shelters' some religous ideas and not others....ie. "there is no question that the Israelis now hold the moral high ground in their conflict with Hamas and Hezbollah. And yet liberals in the United States and Europe often speak as though the truth were otherwise. "

Anyone try and critise the 'jews' without copping a head full of conflict and bad feelings? but its okay to go for it....on the 'muslims'.? Huh, how does that work? Sam is not practising what he preaches...and yep I've read his other stuff but in all fairness I'm limiting my comments to this article.

 

To me...it sounds like he is merely critizing the 'liberals'...because he isnt' one (even thou' he says he is)....His article is chock full of 'absolutist' beliefs.

 

He has pinned his whole writting career on one idea only........that the world is in conflict because of religious conflict & to "End Faith" would solve all. That's a very poor theory. (what about the last couple of world wars....it was about poverty/land...............and it was only the American's who came into the war (in the last year or so) with a 'moral' issue and on a quest to spread democracy....& that's how the US have seen itself since - as the moral gate keepers?

 

To me...it seems as if its the American pysche that's at the root of some of the problem ....to change the world into something according to that ideal and comfort - isn't it about ensuring resources for itself..?. Come On...I'm not buying it!

 

I also read that he happily divides the world into 'west' and 'east'.......and what am I and other's to make of that? That the "west' is the more 'civilised'? yeah right...and what about the white anglo 'satan' of the west. ?

 

(maybe the liberals in the States need a kick up the bum! )....but not in the way Sam would like to encourge more 'extremism' and voilent response or reactions......................................I hope...)

 

Lastly.... I don't know but Sam also writes in another article that AMerican's would do well in following the example of countries - Europe, Aust & New Zealand where life is pretty darn secular.

 

:grin:

I didn't see your post Aismov - hope this answers your enquiry. Btw..although I enjoy much of Sams stuff...I'm am not a 'loyal' supporter or him or anyone really - these writer's provide a nice stepping stone to an individual forming their own thoughts/ideas etc.

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I'm not the best speller/writer on the planet but that doesn't mean my opinions are of any less value than anyones.....I like what Vigile-del-foulco expresses re: that the bet is that most "muslims' are fairly easy going - average people .......just like you and me - they want the best for their kids and to be left alone to get on with life.

 

We're certainly entitled to our own opinions and I certainly respect yours and your right to have them. My point is the criticism of Sam's opinion (and of the opinion I hold) and to suggest because we come to conclusions based on facts and reports from various news media (including those from overseas) that somehow we're fascist. For us to hear things from Osama (who has recently attained permission from spiritual elders to slaughter up to 10 million Americans - his "permission", apparently, was due to his Koranic command for us to convert to Islam on three different occasions) and to hear that he has the support of great percentages of Muslims on the streets of the Middle East . . . I can't for the life of me form a different opinion than that which the facts present.

 

Apparently, in our liberalized society, opinions are as valid as facts -- regardless of what the physical world delivers to our senses. I cannot and will not form opinions that require me to make a leap of faith away from factual evidence -- that is the world I abandoned, and I will not go back to it, regardless of what the official mood is for the moment.

 

I do appreciate your remarks, but I'm not going to go with my feelings on this one. I'm not going to paint Islamicist Arabs with American sensibilities and view them through a Hollywood lens. I'm going to watch what they do, hear what they say, and take them very seriously and at their word.

 

That's what we didn't do on 9/11 . . . and a good deal of people on both sides of the political aisle seem hell bent on allowing it to happen again. If Osama says he's about to strike again, I believe that it will happen . . . and he'll have more than enough volunteers to carry it out - people that's he's deluded with the politico-spiritual cults he's formed in that region. I'm amazed that while it's pretty much accepted that Christian fundamentalists own the GOP in the South and the Midwest, that it's "unfathomable" to think that such an unholy spiritual/political alliance can exist over there.

 

Australia is another kettle of fish - a different country than the US...and I'm coming from the view that things are not so grim. Multiculturalism works ...............The fact is we are all migrants here. I've seen a shift over the years towards many types of 'migrant' ....luckily the "white australia policy" was abolished.

 

This is what I'm talking about. Bush has made this thing so politicized that rational people on the left wouldn't believe the sky to be blue if Bush declared it so. Therefore, since I support a strong-arm defensive response to the war on terror (absent Iraq), I'm therefore anti-multicultural and anti-immigrant. For the record, I voted against Bush twice and would do so again in a heartbeat if our Constitution gave either of us the opportunity . . . if anything, he's making a pre-existing condition worse. But . . . oops, I've acknowledged a rift between Islamic extremists and Western Civilization, so - therefore - I'm a racist and a fascist. Someone please tell my African-American life partner/lover/spouse . . . he'd be surprised.

 

I'll address the rest of your post -- which has good points -- later this evening. I'm out for the night.

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Okay Tex .... if I may add a few short notes as a reply to your last post... :grin:

 

Permission.....plenty in the bible that any despot could use in the same way as Osama et al. have. Simply.....the Bush Admin have on numerous occasions said that they 'have god on their side'. I don't see the point.

 

Fascist..........I'm not aware of anything written etc...other than what's in Sam's article - where he writes...."The people who speak most sensibly about the threat that Islam poses to Europe are actually fascists." So with that in mind...its easy for me to assume that Sam is agreeing with the fascist way of dealing with opposition and social/political conflict. Who are the 'fascist's now?

 

Osama..........is a criminal & needs to be apprehended - but for some reason he escapes & now has turned into some kind of crazy role model for disenfranchised youth .......& not only of Arab descent. Why were his family allowed to leave the US....the whole thing was mis managed?

 

Leap of faith.....unfortunately the individual can't escape that - our governments or should I say the way 'democracy' is set up makes that a requirement. What is sealed from our eyes at the moment? & how much does it cost to gain access to some documents?

 

Feelings........are valid - however I'm also not going to paint the 'muslim' ALL with the same brush - Hollywood or with the Chrisitan/Jewish Religous one.

 

Protection...............Its sad - & bloody inconvient! but I think the way the admininstration (Including Oz to some degree) have responded by extending government powers & watching/spying on their own citizens has more or less achieved to aims of Osama et al. without him or his crazy followers lifting a finger.

 

Fear..................I loved the way people reponded in London - the next day they just on with it. DIfferent attitude I think.

 

Anti - immigration.......where do you come from? Immigration put you in America basically. I don't think its 'fair' to punish all Arabs or ALL immigrants perhaps because of the way they look. That kind of attitude imo...is why problems escalate. There is no safety or gain in excluding people from access to basically stuff that you and I enjoy & take for granted. Thats far from 'EQUALITY'....

 

Offended ...........just as you are offended if you were to be labeled a racist/fascist ...muslims are also outraged and upset by whats going on in their community - they get the 'terrorist' name calling. Its not good for 'average' people to be attacked like that!

 

Western civilization........well I know its crap - not perfect but 'rift' ?........I think the islamic extremists are in the same boat as the christian extremist/fundy who want to keep out 'progressive' philosophy etc....to me its not an East vs West but one primitive worldview fighting against extinction. *hehehe*

 

 

Yeah...i'm buggered - time to knock off for the day

 

:thanks:

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Queer Texan once again I applaud your no-nonsense eloquence and your courage to state your position unambiguously. Below I have quoted you where you have delineated some of the most substantive suggestions that I have encountered in these forums since I arrived. I will reserve agreement with them or personal judgement on them (my judgement is often impaired anyway) until I can fill in some more information about them. To that end, I wonder if you will permit me a few questions.

I'm not for genocide or any other shit like that, personally, this is what I believe we should do. 1) Pull out of the Middle East (we can't do any worse, well, actually we could - maybe that's why we should leave yesterday) 2) Immediately end support of Israel - let them fight the battle they started, 3) and make a solemn oath to the Ayatollahs of the world: eye for an eye X 10. A bomb goes off in Manhattan or LA? We nuke Tehran, and every other Arab capital. Period. No negotiations, no talks. Action for action.

On your first suggestion that we pull out of the Middle East, why should we? I'm not advocating any position I am merely curious as to why you think that we should pull out.

On your suggestion that we end support of Israel, again why and what would this entail? That is, why should we end support and what would ending our support entail. Would we stop giving them financial aid and selling them weapons?

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It reminds me of the state of mind of the Religous Right in the US and what is going on as part of the debate of multiculturalism. Its outrageous.! In short the 'us & them' bullshit- and wouldn't you say...extremist, cultish & any other terms you care to fling at it. (& god bless amerikka...yeah I'm tense about that as I am over any terror attack )

 

To me...the "MUSLIM" has been demonised and satanised by popular consensus in western society....& largely promoted by the USA.

 

Absolutely. I'm not trying to whitewash anything the Bush administration has been doing, and I've often feared (and still do) that if the terrorists manage to nuke one of our cities or if the economy freefalls (as some economists have worried about aloud) while the Righteous Right is still in power, then we might have ourselves a good old fashioned theocracy over here . . . one that would make Auswitz look like a night at Barnum & Bailey's.

 

I've been able to look back over the last five years and see some trends on both sides, though. Afterwards, both poles of the political spectrum went a bit berzerk . . . heck, those couple of days were pretty scarey around the country, and I live in Texas. The Super-Christians were blaming the gays, atheists, and feminists and the radical left (and by "radical" - I'm talking about the flower-power pacificists who believe the moral thing to do in the face of terror is die) where blaming all our past sins (as if anything France or Britain did in the past might pale in comparison) . . . yada yada. I fell victim to it, too -- and when Iraq happened, and we realized we had been lied to, I believed everything that came out of the mouths of anyone that happened to not be a Republican (that being the only criteria).

 

I think the reasonable people -- regardless of their political beliefs -- are starting to come to a reasonable middle ground: that we have to protect our territorial integrity, but that we can't charging off invading other countries without a real, palpable cause. Yeah, our country's done some shitty things in the past -- but Islamic terrorism isn't falling into that pattern. Hell, we helped fund Osama when he was fighting the commies in Afghanistan . . . obviously, this isn't a personal vendetta. It is about religion -- totally, and when our Hollywood, fornicating, adulterating, sodomizing, immodest dressing, cursing, drinking and blaspheming GI boots touched the Holy Saudi soil where Muhammad saw his visions . . . well, it became personal very quickly. We were infidels soiling his holy ground -- and it didn't matter that we were protecting a Kuwaiti King. Our continued refusal to allow their other holy city, Jerusalem, to return to Muslim hands -- another act of blasphemy against their one, true God (of whom Muhammad was the last prophet).

 

It sounds like nonsense, but this is why we must die. It isn't because Pat Buchanan said it, or Jerry Falwell, or George Bush, or Pat Robertson . . . it's because Osama Bin Ladin said it, to the thunderous applause of millions in the muslim east. If all the Islamic countries with shia majorities were to overthow their kings and dictators . . . there would be SEVERAL theocracies in that region, and Osama would be their George Washington.

 

What can easily be read or heard by reading or listening to their own words cannot be discounted just because some televangelist nut-wacker is preaching about the Armedgeddon. I think this is what Sam meant when he said that the only people who agree with him HAPPEN to actually be fascists (as fundamentalists Christians are by their very definition). Because they both agree that the sky is blue doesn't make Sam a fascist, or anyone else who believes that Islamic extremism is a real and present danger. We have to remember -- they successfully bombed three of our buildings with 747s. This wasn't a bad dream, and it wasn't an anomoly. It was cleverly plotted out -- and worked nearly perfectly. We're more alert -- but our own experts tell us that we're not out of danger as our port, airline, and mass transit systems are really underguarded.

 

Because some people are racists, because we have the wrong guy in the White House, because some of our population are salivating for big mushroom clouds in the Middle East so they can start looking upward for the Savior . . . it doesn't erase 9/11, or make the continued threat go away.

 

The whole thing about this being a miniscule operation by a handful of fanatics. Please explain to me how 9/11 could have been orchestrated (it was a multi-million dollar operation). Please explain how Hezbellah can promise the southern Lebanese billions of dollars in aid for rebuilding? Please tell me where these small operators got the money to buy sophisticated Chinese weaponry that we knew nothing about until the latest Israeli-Hezbollah conflict? This is an enormous undertaking by these countries involved. It isn't the invention of Fox news, and no one over there won the Powerball (okay, bad joke). All of this is happening because it has the mass support of governments, industries . . . and most importantly, the people of the Islamic east.

 

I think the US....the Bush administration has handled the "Terror" situation very badly from the very start of 9/11 - calling it a 'war on terror'...rather than tackling the problems in a way that differenciates between a 'crime' which is what I believe the act was....and a full on military assault.

 

Before 9/11, it could have been handled as a "crime." I'm sorry though - a full-scale bombing that might have included the White House or the Capital? We're not talking about armed robbery here -- we may have had no business in Iraq, but the Afghan operation was called for, and we might have actually caught the bad guy if we hadn't moved resources to Iraq.

 

How, exactly, do you round up the bad guys when your criminals are in another country? We asked Afghanistan to turn over Osama -- to extradite them, and they refused. They hid them, with full knowledge of what they were up to, and refused to surrender them. Even the Sudan (Osama's previous hideaway) wasn't that stupid -- which was why he had to leave Africa. Do you ask pretty please, or just say "darn, foiled again?"

 

What I would suggest - just so that you might have a better frame of reference - is to ask them to attack your Parliament building, or maybe nuke Sydney -- and then you could show us how to solve it all as a police matter. I'm not being sarcastic . . . I mean, really? It's just as if you were saying that 9/11 wasn't as important as it was, and that maybe . . . just maybe we're overreacting. I would agree if you're talking just about Iraq (which was all Bush's idea - he had to get on TV and promise us that Saddam was about ready to launch nukes at us) . . . but Afghanistan? Or pretending as if the Muslim extremists are promising death to America (which they are, btw . . .and they've kept their promises so far)?

 

Bush imo...has used the 'war on terror'.....time and time again (as the Aust government has)....to shift focus from local and more pressing social issues. (commonly called fuckups ie.where to put all the homeless..not to mention Katrina) The 9/11 event although tragic...has reached mythical proportions in the minds of some....yep almost a religion. Has anyone noticed the same reverence towards other world shattering events that has claimed many more lives of humanbeings? Nope.! Imo...9/11 has been formed into a point of 'nationism' and it sickens me. I bet Bush would like to forget how his 'presidency' was struggling before 9/11.

 

My 'hate' of Bush or the 'Liberal' Govenment lead by John Howard (do American's know his name...btw)....is not distorting my view of the world. I see and hear all the lies. And I also have a better memory than I'm given credit for in any democracy'.... Remember the lie - and the reason why the 'war' in Iraq was deemed to be such a necessity.................all those weapons of mass destruction.? Phewwweee! stinky!

 

Is the world 'SAFER' since the "WAR ON TERROR'.......NO I don't think so. But that's another subject.

 

My suggestion to you would be to ask yourself if you are lumping the Afghan action, Iraq, and the active measures we're taking to potentially protect ourselves from another strike by state-sponsored terrorists? Not all of these are the same thing, and if they are to you -- then I would suggest that you study the issue and not depend on the blogosphere for your opinions. To pretend that the threat doesn't exist doesn't equate with the reality that was 9/11. It's intellectual laziness . . . something I was guilty of for quite a while.

 

anyway.....Sam writes :-

 

Given the degree to which religious ideas are still sheltered from criticism in every society,

 

Yes I agree!!!!! But that's where it he comes undone.........why does he stop focusing on the home front (US) and the Christian 'taliban' and move off shore to the radical Islamists in Europe?. He more or less suggests that ALL MUSLIMS are at fault (even thou' he make a small effort to say not)- especially when he sites the 'european' multicultural situtation....to quote...".where the dogma of multiculturalism has left a secular Europe very slow to address the looming problem of religious extremism among its immigrants" That is a slap dash effort imo....It also suggests that religious issues are at the root & that's it. ? Very silly........what about the social /economic issues involved in immigration policy. Not all human relationships revolve around religion!

 

And this is the point where you simply stop thinking and go with the official leftist/anarchist/pacifist rhetoric. If you really wanted to know how Sam comes to his conclusions, all you have to do is read his book -- it takes him 237 pages to make his case (which he does meticulously), followed up by another 60 pages of notes and 30 pages of bibliography. This isn't left-wing Ann Coulter -- this was carefully researched and he backs up every claim he makes.

 

If you just want to think Sam Harris is just some Zionist who wants to score one against the Ishmaelites, well . . . you also have the right to do that. If you want to know Sam's thesis, I would suggest reading "End of Faith" . . . and not rely on one article that doesn't allow the same space as his book does. If you don't want to, that's fine, too -- but for those of us who did read it, we'll just know that you don't know what you're talking about.

 

Again, I'm not trying to be deliberately rude or sarcastic . . . but, I've read the book and you're just playing connect-the-dots.

 

Western civilization........well I know its crap - not perfect but 'rift' ?........I think the islamic extremists are in the same boat as the christian extremist/fundy who want to keep out 'progressive' philosophy etc....to me its not an East vs West but one primitive worldview fighting against extinction. *hehehe*

 

As a nurse, I experience something often called a "floating vein" (usually on elderly patients). When I'm trying to start an intravenous cathether, these "floaters" are often difficult to penetrate -- you can keep stabbing at them, but you can hardly ever catch them.

 

I'm not going to go round and round on things we've already covered, but I'll hit this last point. You're absolutely right about this being a battle of civilization, and we won't win this one by accomodating Shite extremists. It's economics? Then, how are they getting the funds to pay for Hezbollah? Why are rich Saudis involved? Why were some of the 9/11 hijackers college trained engineers? Why weren't they joined by the Vietnamese . . . or why wasn't the entire enterprise one from Africa, a place where "economy" would more than justify acts of envy and desperation?

 

The unifying factor is religion -- and for me, the fact that it's a "faith" doesn't provide it any sort of immunity. Read Sam's book. It'll only take a day.

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"where the dogma of multiculturalism has left a secular Europe very slow to address the looming problem of religious extremism among its immigrants" That is a slap dash effort imo....It also suggests that religious issues are at the root & that's it. ? Very silly........what about the social /economic issues involved in immigration policy. Not all human relationships revolve around religion!

 

Yes, true, but the social and economic issues have been beaten to death and religion has mostly been avoided. Direct criticism of religion, that is. For me, this makes his laser focus on religion refreshing.

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I'm inclined to agree that multiculturalism is beaten to death, especially here in Canada. I enjoy diversity, but I enjoy rational diversity better than just a conglomeration of people who believe, think and behave differently than another group of people. It's like inserting someone elses organ into your body...it's rejected.

 

I'm not saying that we all need to think the same way...but we should all apply a foundation of values that can easily apply objectively to everyone.

 

1. Value reason.

2. Value productivity.

3. Value oneself.

 

They are simple, concise, and not prescriptive in any way except to help guide you on your way to a more productive and loving individual. You can't love other people if you don't love yourself.

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On your first suggestion that we pull out of the Middle East, why should we? I'm not advocating any position I am merely curious as to why you think that we should pull out.

On your suggestion that we end support of Israel, again why and what would this entail? That is, why should we end support and what would ending our support entail. Would we stop giving them financial aid and selling them weapons?

 

We should pull out because I don't believe we can manage it. Managing it the way we really want to would require us to essentially set up Empire over there, and we just don't have the troops and would never get the international support (much less homeland support). If we set up to invade every country in the region, Russian and China would intervene, and the thing could get nuclear. Both Russia and China are interested in the Middle East -- not only because of arms sales -- but because of the antagonistic situation it creates with the US. The Middle East could bankrupt us -- essentially, destroying our political dominance in the world and leaving those two to jockey for leadership.

 

Essentially, what we want to happen can't because we can't afford it.

 

Israel is part of our Middle East strategy and as such is part of the problem. While there were good intentions, the creation of the Israeli state on hostile terrority was a mistake -- and all of this is essentially the result of that act in '48. Think about it. They essentially told the resident Arabs of the region "We don't care that your families have lived here for centuries -- the Brits gave it to us, and God gave it to us before that . . . so move along with your goats and sheep and only come back when you want to mow our lawns. By now, and good luck with life."

 

The creation of Israel was the creation of a religio-fascist state where the only "true" citizens could be Jews. And, what's funny, is that I've heard heavily credentialled liberals defending this. One that I know said, "Well, when you examine the birth rates of Palestinians and Jews, you'll see that even if they allowed a fraction of the Palestinians to remain as full citizens in a secular state, that it wouldn't be but a matter of a century before Jews were a minority in their own country."

 

Mind-boggling. So, as far as I'm concerned, the Arab-Israeli Wars were completely justified . . . from the Arab point of view. I don't give a rats ass what the Romans did two millenia ago -- Palestine was not Jewish terrority before 1948. However, when terrorism became the official response to the Israeli invasion -- the genocidal murder of innocent children, etc. -- the innocence was lost.

 

I've even heard some liberals say, "Oh, but one man's terrorist is another man's freedom-fighter," or "well, in 1776 - we called 'em patriots." Please, puh-lease find me the equivalent action of a suicide bomber walking into a crowded disco with anything Washington and his men did. Dear God.

 

So --- to get completely out, we have to get completely out. Not to "let them win" . . . but, to prevent them from doing so. Crap - we need to reign in the troops from the four corners of the globe -- if the world community is so concerned about all the "hot-spots" -- let them fill in the holes we leave. If North Korea invades the South -- fuck it. If China invades Taiwan . . . waaah. It's tiring -- and islamicism is a real threat to our security, and we have to be prepared to face whatever it brings our way -- something we can't do as long as we still "occupy" Germany, Japan, Italy, etc., etc., etc.

 

It isn't defeatism -- it's consolidation -- and then we can give our ultimatums to Osama and his state-sponsoring allies: "Hit us again, and we dissolve your cities into the atmosphere, one by one, eye for an eye."

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Are we supposed to let it happen . . . because we deserve it?

 

My position is more that the threat has been artificially bloated for political reasons, but that our current actions based on the political good will bloating the threat has given the admin, that we are in effect fanning the flames and making the threat more credible. So, no, I don't think we should let something happen because we deserve it. I just think we should knock off this war on terror crap and look for ways to heal the wounds instead. There are of course extremists who will not forgive, but the masses of Muslims will only care if we push and poke them.

 

 

If I'm a bit on tilt . . . it's because I'm scared to death.

 

I'm far more afraid of my own government than I am of threats of terror. If they haven't yet nuked downtown Tel Aviv, worrying about them nuking downtown LA feels a bit to me as if you are playing into the government's hands with their current propaganda agenda of raising fears in order to justify their actions. I read a statistic the other day (can't recall where. sorry) which stated that during the 20th century, far more were killed by their own governments than by invading enemies.

 

 

I'm not for genocide or any other shit like that, personally, this is what I believe we should do. 1) Pull out of the Middle East (we can't do any worse, well, actually we could - maybe that's why we should leave yesterday) 2) Immediately end support of Israel - let them fight the battle they started, 3) and make a solemn oath to the Ayatollahs of the world: eye for an eye X 10. A bomb goes off in Manhattan or LA? We nuke Tehran, and every other Arab capital. Period. No negotiations, no talks. Action for action.

 

I didn't catch this before responding to you. It seems we are probably more on the same page than I thought. However, I severely disagree with using a nuclear threat. The idea of retaliation, though it sticks in my craw, is I suppose necessary. Surely we have better alternatives to nuclear anihilation. I wish we could put that damn genie back in the bottle altogether. Sigh...

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My position is more that the threat has been artificially bloated for political reasons, but that our current actions based on the political good will bloating the threat has given the admin, that we are in effect fanning the flames and making the threat more credible. So, no, I don't think we should let something happen because we deserve it. I just think we should knock off this war on terror crap and look for ways to heal the wounds instead. There are of course extremists who will not forgive, but the masses of Muslims will only care if we push and poke them.

 

I agree that we're making things worse, but nothing in Sam's book suggests that we pay attention to Homeland Security color-coded warnings. Obviously, the administration is playing political games and Olbermann showed an interesting correlation between those alerts and lowering poll numbers. I doubt the phrase "homeland security" was in Sam's book -- he made his case by researching religious history, both Christian, Jewish, and Muslim, and based on what they've said they would do and what they've accomplished. I tend to believe that since they said they would do something (and did it), then if they continue to make the same threats, they have to be taken seriously.

 

The only thing that really irks me is when people make the suggestion that it's impossible for Islamic extremists to pose such a threat -- ignoring the fact that four planes were used for bombs five years and ten days ago.

 

As far as a "war on terror" - I think it exists, obviously, because we've been attacked, but I don't think it's anything we must or have to do pre-emptively or pro-actively. Iraq was a monumental mistake, and I don't think the American public has the appetite to do the same for even more legitimate targets. For me, fighting the war means beefing up security, pulling out of the Middle East, becoming energy independent, and promising hell if it happens again.

 

And there's nothing I could ever do to defend this president. I remember around the time of "Mission accomplished," he was thumping his chest about Cuba and Venezuala . . . calling them state sponsors of terrorism and child-prostitute traffickers. I don't even think Barbara believed him that time -- and that's why I can't stand Bush. We could be facing a real, deadly, threat -- and the world wouldn't believe it until they see mushroom clouds over Manhattan.

 

I'm far more afraid of my own government than I am of threats of terror. If they haven't yet nuked downtown Tel Aviv, worrying about them nuking downtown LA feels a bit to me as if you are playing into the government's hands with their current propaganda agenda of raising fears in order to justify their actions. I read a statistic the other day (can't recall where. sorry) which stated that during the 20th century, far more were killed by their own governments than by invading enemies.

 

I certainly don't trust our government, and have grave fears about the future, but I do have more fear of those who've made real threats and followed through than from a President who's just lied to me. So far, the only people he's killed are 2,000 GIs and 100,000 Iraqis . . . he hasn't aimed the guns inward. I read that statistic as well -- a statistic that couldn't be true without Hitler, Stalin, and Chairman Mao, and in those shadows, Bush really doesn't qualify (as evil as he is).

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Bush doesn't have to qualify. All he has to do is erode the protections and slowly heat the water in which the content frogs (representative of the masses) don't notice the danger. This opens the door to a future disaster if history is any guide; and I think it is.

 

Essentially where we differ on this issue is that I don't buy the official 911 story. At the very least, I believe that the government opened up a window and let the terrorists in. I'm sure that makes me an extremist. So be it.

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I think people are reading too much into what Sam is saying here. I don’t quite get what he means by the “dogma of multiculturalism” but I believe it probably has to do with the points he made in “The End of Faith.” Being overly accepting of all is only causing more of a problem than it is solving. When any culture comes to the point at which it is a threat to the rest of society, it can no longer be accepted. It has to be put down. I think that point is fast approaching if not already present with Islam.

 

The people who speak most sensibly about the threat that Islam poses to Europe are actually fascists. Wtf?

 

I sincerely doubt Sam has decided to promote fascism. I believe he’s saying that it’s fucking PATHETIC that the only ones who seem to be speaking sensibly about the threat ARE fascists.

 

So Snookums…what’s your answer? I don’t think anyone has actually proposed the things you sarcastically joked about (setting up the ovens) except maybe these radical Islamic fundamentalists that want to saw the head off your shoulders for not believing in Allah. Should we just let them do it? Where is the line finally drawn when action HAS to be taken against these people?

 

Except for "Israeli Moral High Ground," I agree with everything Sam says. It amazes me that some who've thrown their religious garbage in the sewer still uphold this invisible shield of respect toward religious beliefs, especially those that can be quite dangerous.

 

Again, I don’t believe Sam is respecting the religious beliefs of the Jews. He’s just saying that in this case, he believes their position is morally superior to that of the Hamas and Hezbollah. What’s the problem with that? I have to say that I agree and I most certainly hold no respect for Judaism.

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thanks tex for your lengthy rave *smiles* I'll probably repeat myself too.....

 

We basically disagree on a few points:

 

Money - Funding.

It doesn't seem logical or fair to NOT expect other nations and/or military organisations that happen to 'oppose' or differ from the dominate or in this case US ideology/political/self-interest to produce or gain funds for their causes. In my opinion Hezbollah is as entitled to do that as any other military/political organisation. The US do it very well, may I introduce the thought that the US World Debt is growing massively everyday. Where is that money coming from?

To me.....the idea that 'other's - meaning whole "nations' are NOT somehow entitled to fund is silly. The US funds all kinds of activities around the globe including providing money and resources to Israel.

 

Definition of what is a 'terrorist' group.

At this point I'm not convinced that Hezbollah are 'terrorists'. The term is getting to sound ridiculous............but try and use it against a group that are supposedly the 'good guys' then see the feathers fly.

 

Rounding up 'Bad guys"...

Well yeah...there are places that the US don't have power but must respect interntional laws - unless of course 'war' is declared. There some irony in that statement! Perhaps I need to spell it out...to declare war absolves that minor detail.

I also think it would be noteworthy for some in officialdom as well as average citizens to take note of the growing dislike/disrespect for the US generally. Chevas has just called Bush the devil - very funny to see.

 

Osamabinliner.

His threats and name calling are absolutely not unacceptable, however I personally don't feel threatened. That's just me. Of course its equally not fair for the arab or muslim individual to be blamed and made into targets because of the 'ravings' of a mad men. See what I mean...Pat & Jerry do the same shit. This is quite an emotional response to believe 'you are going to die' - its not logical to think that everyone will - there are other solutions. Killing is pretty much an 'absolute'.

 

9/11

I don't buy the popular or mainly media lead view of the whole thing. That's it.

 

"Afghan action, Iraq, and the active measures we're taking to potentially protect ourselves from another strike by state-sponsored terrorists?"

 

Interesting that you reflect the line feed to the public by the "administration'. I don't believe its in the interests of the planet to label every opposing 'nation' as 'terrorists' or harbouring them. No of course its not the same deal. However to me, its as lame and dishonest as starting a war on the pretense of searching out 'weapons of mass destruction'............Btw...its ironic to know which nations exactly have the most 'weaponery' - including 'chemical' and nuclear. - Yep the US.

So may I return the favour and suggest you reflect on that.

 

 

A better frame of reference.

I was waiting for it.................the statement that suggests 'what do I know, I'm not an American'.

Okay.... :grin:

 

 

Zionisim.

I don't know what Sam is - & I don't really care. Sams book is okay but I don't swallow the whole story - he is just one author - not a guru (just yet)...yep I'm being sarcastic but at his expense.

 

 

'You simply stop thinking and go with the official leftist/anarchist/pacifist rhetoric.'

I resemble that remark!........are saying to think means to be 'right'...?

geez.

 

"not an East vs West but one primitive worldview fighting against extinction. *hehehe*

 

You didn't catch my sarcasm in that comment. I was making a thow away comment about the US and how its seeming to loose its 'civility'. Its run by a president that looks like a religious dictor - who wants to rule the world, supported by a growing population of evengelicals and Religous nutcases who believe the world is 6,000 years old.

 

Bit like the pot calling the kettle black.

 

Then you ask a series of questions. - I don't know - Do you have all the answers? It would be 'scary' to know that the opposition is educated and rich but why not - the culture accomodates education and wealth. *shrugs*

 

Tex...you keep mentioning that individuals and causes are 'state sponsored' - Yes they are - but especially in democractic type countries. What's not to understand or find offense in that?

 

 

anyway...so...We don't agree on everything...I think the individuals who are responsible for representing the population - fucked up badly.!

 

but to end on a point that we both agree on......you say

"the fact that it's a "faith" doesn't provide it any sort of immunity"

 

I whole heartedly practise that - in fact to disagree with the more popular view is often a very uncomfortable place to be - to tend to get ostracised when in a group or shunned.

I also take the broader meaning of the term 'faith' to including "faith" in your govenment, your own worldview, where you find 'knowledge', all kinds of things that make up a person.

 

I also demonstrate my ....err...disrepect from any kind of 'immunity' towards all forms of religous faith .....not just as Sam does...the Muslims and christian..........while seemingly to give 'immunity' to others. Nope - that's not my style.

 

It must be obvious by now that to disagree with another's firmly held beliefs comes at some cost which I have been prepared to pay.

 

& To me civil liberties are negotiable.

 

(opps didn't entend on raving but what the heck)

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I think people are reading too much into what Sam is saying here. I don’t quite get what he means by the “dogma of multiculturalism” but I believe it probably has to do with the points he made in “The End of Faith.” Being overly accepting of all is only causing more of a problem than it is solving. When any culture comes to the point at which it is a threat to the rest of society, it can no longer be accepted. It has to be put down. I think that point is fast approaching if not already present with Islam.

 

The people who speak most sensibly about the threat that Islam poses to Europe are actually fascists. Wtf?

 

I sincerely doubt Sam has decided to promote fascism. I believe he’s saying that it’s fucking PATHETIC that the only ones who seem to be speaking sensibly about the threat ARE fascists.

 

So Snookums…what’s your answer? I don’t think anyone has actually proposed the things you sarcastically joked about (setting up the ovens) except maybe these radical Islamic fundamentalists that want to saw the head off your shoulders for not believing in Allah. Should we just let them do it? Where is the line finally drawn when action HAS to be taken against these people?

 

Except for "Israeli Moral High Ground," I agree with everything Sam says. It amazes me that some who've thrown their religious garbage in the sewer still uphold this invisible shield of respect toward religious beliefs, especially those that can be quite dangerous.

 

Again, I don’t believe Sam is respecting the religious beliefs of the Jews. He’s just saying that in this case, he believes their position is morally superior to that of the Hamas and Hezbollah. What’s the problem with that? I have to say that I agree and I most certainly hold no respect for Judaism.

 

My answer.....would be to fixed up the radical Christian Fundamentalists that the US has and exports across the globe...first & for most. Then you can start on the other extremist. The phsyical threat to the entire population of the US is not emminent. Especially if you believe the US's own 'intelligence'...surely that kind of panic needs to die down. Armaggettin sick of it! People don't think well in that emotional state. But perhaps that's a good reason to keep up the heat.?

 

I think sams comment 'the dogma of multiculturalism'.....smells of fasicism but I'm not sure etiher. At least it suggests returning to an old style of 'nationism'. Whatever...I don't like it.

 

You see ..I disgree with sam and other's.......I don't think the 'fascists' can ever be thought of as sensible! Clever, sneaky...but never sensible.

There are other solutions if people are prepared to look outside the box.

 

I also don't .....with the biggest leap of logic......blame the entire 'culture' of the arab world for the the problems caused by a few redneck islamists and for whatever reason. Islam only a part of the culture.

Reasons for the 'hate'? There is more to this story than that....it goes back a few decades......perhaps back to the british occupation of the middleeast...who really cares if people immediately decide on one cause....ie. multiculturalism...or their culture. Surely ....! I'm starting to harbour a dislike for the US..for goodness sake its not that hard.

 

I think it would be great to 'accept' the differences in all cultures....and stop trying to changing the world into one great big MacDonalds shopping MALL. I guess I get bored easily.

 

When you say...'it has to be put down'.......that to me...is the exactly 'primitive' response that Islam is being accused of. So yeah.....my dark sarcasm stands....you wanna be the one to set up the 'ovens'.? Because ya know how difficult it is to force people to change their beliefs ..their god. :grin:

 

There are better.....more civilised solutions than to exterminate an entire culture. I don't think that's fucking PATHETIC.....................how much guts would it take to push a button. Fuckall it seems.

Oh well ..to each their own.

 

I not entirely clear about what sam means when he says 'morally superior'....perhaps a better writer would have made their thoughts clearer...*shrugs* The article appears in an newspaper so go figure. Nevertheless it is a value jugdment.....putting one religous group on top of the other...as well as offering 'respect' to one groups and not the other.

No doubt in my mind about that. But that's his progative.

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"where the dogma of multiculturalism has left a secular Europe very slow to address the looming problem of religious extremism among its immigrants" That is a slap dash effort imo....It also suggests that religious issues are at the root & that's it. ? Very silly........what about the social /economic issues involved in immigration policy. Not all human relationships revolve around religion!

 

Yes, true, but the social and economic issues have been beaten to death and religion has mostly been avoided. Direct criticism of religion, that is. For me, this makes his laser focus on religion refreshing.

 

Yeah.....but it doesn't take much more than a spot of commonsense to realise that its okay to do that. (& to see that the 'religious' are getting richer and richer)

 

& it doesn't take a genious (especially one that can spell) to observe that the religiously minded - the 'true believer' has been forcing their views down peoples cake holes for generations. That's its entirely OKay to do that because it saying so the bibbble!! (what!!) Oh & to spread christianity all over the world as barge arse missionaries.!

 

Well.........I figured that I don't have any kind of reason or book to tell me that I can't do the same thing.....and question the beliefs of anyone expecially of the believer's to are dead on intending to sell me a bill of goods. SOmething that they say will change me life. I pretty much feel that I have a right to get involved in that.

 

The other thing....something I had to overcome is the stupid ettiquite I stupidily followed that it was somehow 'rude' to ask questions about a persons religious beliefs.

And then after I got the hang of that.....I moved onto the 'direct criticism'...............and why the fuck not.? :grin:

The christian is more that happy to jump down my throat and criticize my worldview and lifestyle ...in fact I'm also 'judged' at every turn and then sent directly to hell....and do not collect $200.

 

I don't agree that social & economic issue have been beaten to death.....may stolen and hijacked?

 

Quite frankly....I'm finding it increasingly more difficult to find any difference between religion and politics. But what's new Hey? :grin: The bibbble is one big political platform - even for the primitive culture it reflects.

 

 

I don't know...maybe part of the problem is that to separate issues into 'boxes' doesn't work. Peoples lives aren't like that. Perhaps a 'wholistic' approach is needed. The big picture ? I doubt 'ending' faith is a realistic approach or solution.

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My answer.....would be to fixed up the radical Christian Fundamentalists that the US has and exports across the globe...first & for most. Then you can start on the other extremist.

 

I assumed this must be the root of your mindset -- the US must die because of George Bush and Jerry Falwell, and then and only then can we see if there's actually an Islamic threat . . . because, most likely, NYC, London, and Madrid, and all the US African embassies (during the Clinton years) were inside jobs.

 

America die first, and then we'll see if there's a real problem.

 

Am I wrong?

 

This is pacificism and martyrdom. Believe the other guy first -- even if he wants to kill you.

 

Sam Harris on pacificism:

 

Pacificism is generally considered to be a morally unassailable position to take with respect to human violence. The worst that is said of it, generally, is that it is a difficult position to maintain in practice. It is almost never branded as flagrantly immoral, which I believe it is. While it can seem noble enough when the stakes are low, pacificm is ultimately nothing more than a willingness to die, and to let others die, at the pleasure of the world's thugs.
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