Friday, September 29, 2006

9-11 and the Parallel Looniverse

Dr. Sanity has made some very interesting observations based upon a typically cryptic (or craptic, depending on your point of view) comment casually tossed aside by Petey, to the effect that 9-11 did not just alter the future, but the past. Every psychotherapist knows that present insight can transform the past, but does it also work on a macro level?

Hmm. As with all of Petey’s wiggets of gnosdom, this one is worthy of the application of some sustained higher bewilderment. For, if it is true that the present alters the past, then before getting into specific cases such as 9-11, we should ask the question: “by virtue of what principle?” In fact, this question is at the heart of metaphysics, which looks beyond surface appearances to inquire into the principles by virtue of which various appearances are possible.

Vincent Vega: Example?

Jules: For example, by virtue of what principle are human beings capable of knowing truth? Answer that one, and you will be able to cut through the thicket of about 99% of philosophistry. By virtue of what principle was the big bang so precisely ordered mathematically? By virtue of what principle may a cosmos be so arranged that it contains living entities capable of knowing (and therefore containing) itself? By virtue of what principle do animals leave the closed system of their own neurology and enter history? By virtue of what principle may human beings know the absolute? Answer these questions and you may skip my book.

The great theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar wrote that “All our destinies are interwoven,” and that “until the last of us has lived, the significance of the first cannot finally be clear.“ For some reason, I was pondering this quite literally the other day. Think about it. No matter how you slice it, the world and the cosmos are going to end. Like everything else deployed in time, they had a beginning and they have an expiration date.

Even before genetic Homo sapiens entered the realm of the truly human a mere 40,000 years ago, the adventure of biology was already two thirds over. That is, biological life manifested on earth just under four billion years ago, but according to my watch, in another two billion years the sun will incinerate the earth, putting a final end to the struggle. Even in the exceedingly unlikely event that we could somehow populate distant planets with billions of people, that will only postpone the inevitable.

Someone is going to be the Last Man Standing. Only he will finally be in a position to take one last look at the orange colored sky, scratch his size 14 Omega Man head, and ask the question, “What was that all about, then? What was history? What did it all mean?” Certainly he will be able to tell us how that ancient war on Islamo-fascism turned out. Only he will finally be able to put everything in its place, see where things ultimately led, see beyond the appearances, and know What Really Happened.

Is that true? Not to repeat myself, but by virtue of what principle? Because human beings have three sources of information about history: 1) facts and reason, 2) pure intellection, and 3) revelation. So even this last man is going to have a very different take on things if he is a secular man, a religious man, or a gnostic man.

But for the religious/gnostic man, we don’t necessarily have to wait until the end of history to discern its ultimate meaning. This is because revelation--whether you agree or disagree with it--purports to disclose the end of both history and creation itself. This is the study of eschatology, that branch of theology concerned with the end: of mankind, of history, and of the world.

If--and only if--you can know this actual eschatological end, can you discern ultimate purposes within history. Let’s take an example I cited a few weeks ago. The great historian Christopher Dawson made the provocative and yet axiomatic assertion that being an eye witness to history is of no consequence whatsoever to historical insight. Obviously, most of us lived through the Clinton years, so we think we know what happened. We were there. But were we really, at least historically?

Dawson uses the example of the Battle of Hastings, which every British schoolchild evidently knows: “A visitor from another planet who witnessed the Battle of Hastings would possess far greater knowledge of the facts than any modern historian, yet this knowledge would not be historical knowledge for lack of any tradition to which it could be related; whereas the child who says ‘William the Conqueror 1066’ has already made his atom of knowledge a historical fact by relating it to a national tradition and placing it in the time-series of Christian culture.”

Similarly, an eye witness to the crucifixion of Jesus would have undoubtedly taken as much notice of the two criminals who were crucified beside him. Only in hindsight was the centrality of Jesus’ death recognized. It is fair to say that no one who witnessed it thought to themselves, “Hmm, interesting. This is the center and still point of history. Yesterday was BC. Tomorrow will be AD.”

As Dawson writes, “Behind the rational sequence of political and economic cause and effect, hidden spiritual forces are at work which confer on events a wholly new significance. The real meaning of history is something entirely different from that which the human actors in the historical drama themselves intend or believe.” A contemporary observer cannot have imagined that “the execution of an obscure Jewish religious leader in the first century of the Roman Empire would affect the lives and thoughts of millions who never heard the names of the great statesmen and generals of the age.”

Thus, there is an unavoidably eschatological aspect of history. Events cannot be fully understood without reference to their finality, that is, what they point toward and reveal only in the fullness of time. As Dawson says, “The pure fact is not as such historical. It only becomes historical when it can be brought in relation with a tradition so that it can be part of an organic whole.”

Therefore, in order to be a proper historian, you had better have your story right. And what is the story? Ah, that’s the question, isn’t it? For it is fair to say that left and right are operating under the umbrella of vastly different stories--politically, culturally, economically, psychologically, theologically, and in just about every other -ally way. Somebody's hiding under the historical dumbrella.

As Dr. Sanity notes, 9-11 was not so much an event as a fork in the historical road creating two parallel universes--a universe and a twin looniverse, not so much parallel as truly perpeculiar. It is as if we veered in one direction, whereas the left veered into what is called a cosmic wormhole, another branch of time altogether. Being that they are trapped in the safety of their own delusional punyverse, they continue to interpret contemporary events by the dim light of 1996, just as, I suppose, there were some people who never stopped interpreting events after 12-7-41 in terms of 12-6.

In the end, this is what the Clinton phallap is all about: trying to stop history and freeze it as it appeared at some point in the 1990’s, prior to the stock market crash and 9-11 (just as it's eternally 1955 for the race hustlers sniveling rights activists). But it will never work. Only by knowing where history went can we know what history meant. All the facts in the world do not speak for themselves, not even the “facts” in Richard Clarke’s autofellatiography. History does not and cannot speak for itself. Depending on its deeperending, you will see completely different facts and regard them very differently.

So there is history and mythtory. But with the right eschatall tale, you can know the end of the story and place contemporary events in their proper context. You may--dare I say--know the signs of the times, and discern them from the designs of the Times.

28 Comments:

Blogger Lisa said...

Don't sell yourself short, doc. Even if one can answer those questions, everyone should read your book! It's enlightening and fun, not to mention an easy read that flows.

9/29/2006 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger a psychiatrist who learned from veterans said...

You are tempting me to read Ulysses. Wasn't Stephen Daedulus (?sp) involved in parallel looniverses?

9/29/2006 09:26:00 AM  
Anonymous jwm said...

AHHH- a trip through Ulysses. More fun than any reasonable person needs to have.
;)

JWM

9/29/2006 09:32:00 AM  
Anonymous Jacob C. said...

Speaking of designs of the times:

The Arizona 9/11 memorial, which was 90% proposed, designed, funded and built by non-Republican voters and politicians, seems to me (a long-time Arizonan) an attempt to set their agenda, their version of reality, literally in stone.

It's a blight on our state's physical and spiritual landscape, but it's not like we'll ever get rid of it - we have far too many L.A.-botomized Californians moving out here, and by the next Presidential election I guarantee this state will be turning bluer than B.B. King.

9/29/2006 09:42:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

A Psychiatrist--

Yes, but Ulysses is also about how our individual history resonates at all times with a deeper sort of mythological time that constantly shines through phenomena and is made "present" through them.

Not to mention Finnegans Wake, which regards all of human history in the same tiptopsiturvical manner.

9/29/2006 09:43:00 AM  
Blogger Alan said...

Almost everyone I know has never been exposed to the ideas that deciding what they believe about mankind's anthropoteleoescathology does and should effect how they live their lives. Even more importantly, by following someone else's scatalogy they are implicitly making statements about their worldview that would shock them if made conscious - and I have demonstrated this with many friends recently thanks to my studies in Bobology.

I know I was fed a load of poop in my education and I shiver at the thought of how much is still being shoveled today.

So what do we do to fix this?

9/29/2006 10:31:00 AM  
Blogger grant said...

This is a fascinating post, Bob.

Question: Who is this Petey that inspires you? Is he a fragment of your own personality or a seperate person?

On the subject of the "end" of humankind and the world:

Early Indian thinkers held that the whole pageant of life and history is "Lila" (the Lords' Play). The word play works two ways here--it is not only God at play, but a kind of dramatic theatrical production, an actual play if you will.
In this play people are actors. A few people may come to realize that they are in a play, but most never grasp that they are living "up on stage" (like in that movie "The Truman Show.")
In a nutshell, the conclusion of the Rishis was that the cosmos is the entertainment of God, the Lord being alone and in need of diversion.
Anyone got a better idea?

9/29/2006 11:14:00 AM  
Anonymous Bluestate Blogophile said...

Alan:

Please clarify what you mean by "poop" conveyed in your education. What the heck did they tell you?

9/29/2006 11:19:00 AM  
Anonymous Molly's Bottom said...

In Ulysses, Leopold Bloom is the man to watch. Emulate his attitudes and you will be a friend of God and man.

9/29/2006 11:24:00 AM  
Blogger Alan said...

Bluestate:

I grew up in Canada where the social studies curriculum was almost more important than math and English - examples: Government good/business not discussed, white man bad/everyone else victims, all cultures equal/except western culture which is bad, being a good Catholic meant being for government running our lives, etc. This is not to say that there isn't a lot to love about Canada and Canadians because there is. Overall, there was no coherent, logical worldview/foundation to what we were taught other than what was based, as is clear to me now, on a fuzzy, irrational set of ideas coming from the left of the political/religious spectrum.

It's only been due to a combination of things (moving to the US, 9/11, arrival of the blogosphere) that I started to realize the problems in my thinking and started educating myself.

I see much in common with education in the US and Canada unfortunately - judging by the product.

Perhaps my perceptions are wrong and colored by being in a blue state (US state, that is, not emotional state!)

9/29/2006 12:14:00 PM  
Blogger R. Sherman said...

Re: Eschatology.

Why is it the world never ends in time for me to avoid a jury trial?

There's a question with cosmological implications, Bob.

Cheers.

9/29/2006 12:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Will said...

I think that the "meaning" of history, the way we understand history, is primarily influenced by artists who then influence the official historians and everybody else.

Shakespeare's limning of human characteristic really changed the way we understand ourselves - no longer were the gods in control of human affairs, our destiny was in our own hands. Shakespeare then, gave us a new way of understanding our own history.

Kafka, too - before Kafka, certain things, events, etc., might have been, in a sense, "Kafka-esque", but we didn't comprehend them as being such. Post-Kafka, however, we have a different perspective of ourselves and our history, for better or worse.

J Joyce and perhaps even more so, the artistry of the tech age, cinema, computer graphic, etc., are giving us yet another frame of historical consciousness - that of the dream, the understanding of illusion and chimera, myth, and hidden forces that drive what we think of as history.

Modern science itself is its own "artistry" with its own implications for historical perspective - think of how probability theory, or the "Butterfly Effect" might be changing the way we view history.

9/29/2006 12:29:00 PM  
Anonymous Will said...

>> . . . the Lord being alone and in need of diversion.
Anyone got a better idea?<<

Well, Grant, if I were alone, I want more than just a "diversion".

I want a fully autonomous partner, a co-creator, someone who I could unconditionally love and in whom I could see myself mirrored so that I could realize myself.

9/29/2006 12:37:00 PM  
Anonymous dilys said...

A couple of trivial comments and one I hope less so:

Grant, I find it a useful exercise to listen to Yo-Yo Ma play movie scores while I drive. It makes me conscious I am at a certain mental level a movie, that could use editing for narrative snap and generous poetic beauty.

Alan, there may be help from left field. Several blogs have noted that U.S. schoolchildren can now be tutored by literate Indians -- outsourced homework help -- who still work intellectually from the pre-Londinistan British base of education.

And, will, that was wonderful: "a fully autonomous partner, a co-creator, someone who I could unconditionally love and in whom I could see myself mirrored so that I could realize myself."

Regarding even mundane companions and encounters that way would certainly approach Friendship to God and Man.

9/29/2006 01:10:00 PM  
Anonymous will said...

Dilys, thanks -

Yes, for us to allow people to be their full creative, independent selves, without demand, without any kind of self -serving "projection" on our part, and to love them utterly for it while always aiding them to reach their fullest creative potential - a spiritual challenge, to say the least, not only in the parent/child relationship, but, as you point out, in all relationships.

Yet, this is how our Creator stands in relation to us, who are His children, as well as His friends and partners.

9/29/2006 05:39:00 PM  
Anonymous Steve said...

Bob,

I don’t disagree that there is definitely a split between reality, and those that inhabit the loony world on the left, but are you sure about where you place the point that this happened? It seems to me that this split happened well before 9/11. Moonbats didn’t originate on 9/12. True, 9/11 did create a great many more of them, much like our presence in Iraq is creating more terrorists, but they were definitely evident before 9/11. As I recall, the real lunacy of the left - the absurdly self-contradictory statements, the projection, the paranoia, and all the rest of it - seemed to me to start in November of 2000, about two seconds after Dan Rather had to go on the air and announce that CBS got the call wrong in Florida. Literally within hours there were charges of election fraud, and from there things only got worse.

Imagine if you will an alternate course of events in September of 2001. (Purely hypothetical.) Suppose there was an enterprising young FBI agent in the Boston field office who managed to “connect the dots” and figured out the 9/11 plot? He swears out a warrant for the arrest of the plotters, and incident to the arrests, he finds “smoking gun” evidence about the plot, and literally thousands of innocent people’s lives are saved. USA! – USA! – USA! Woohoo! Is President Bush a hero to the American people? Maybe.

However in the MSM, and among the already delusional left I can easily imagine everyone from Billary to Kerry to Olberman saying things like:


“Are you kidding me!?! Do you really expect us to believe that a group of 14 peace-loving Muslim men were going to board airplanes, attempt to hijack them armed only with harmless box-cutters, and then fly them into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon? How stupid does this illegitimate, election-stealing President think we are? This only proves that he is a racist Nazi, hell-bent on depriving all women and people of color their civil liberties. Well we’re not going to stand for it. This is America damnit!”

“Well pardon me Mr. Loony, but the videotaped suicide messages of the suspects lay out the whole plot, and make exactly clear what their intentions were.” (This is my made up smoking gun, for the purposes of this example.)

“That doesn’t mean anything. You must be a racist Nazi, just like W. People make joke videos all the time. You’re saying you want to throw everyone in jail who makes a video; at least all the women and people of color. I hope you’re eaten alive by starving rabid rats, you racist homophobe bigot!”

“Ummm, I’m black.”

“Sell-out your own people much, Uncle Tom? Why don’t you go f*** Condi Rice and die!”


(I have to admit, just in writing that example, there was something fun about taking on that air of righteous indignation and just unloading on (an imiginary) someone. Very primitive, but still kinda fun. I think its a power thing, but I will leave that for someone with proper training in psychology.)

My point is that the vast majority of the left was already delusional and believing things that could not possibly be true well before 9/11. I said above that it started on election night in 2000, but upon reflection it may even have been as early as the loss of control of the House in ’94 for the Democratic elite, if not the rank and file.

9/11 may have changed the past as well as the future, but it appears to me that the left’s split from reality happened well before that. I think 9/11 had the effect of exposing that split to a great many people (and waking them up) who had been lulled into passive acceptance of liberal values by the subtle indoctrination of the MSM and popular culture that surrounds us. (Dennis Miller jumps to mind.)

I am not smart enough to figure out, in the time it has taken me to write this, whether the timing of the split would effect your argument regarding the functioning of history (I tend to think not), but I think the fact 9/11 happened does not define the “turning point” as much as does our reaction to it. If Bill Clinton had been in office on 9/11, I doubt seriously whether it would have been an historical turning point - a tragedy felt deeply by the President, and requiring a great deal of “healing,” yes; an historical turning point, no - just as the first WTC attack was not in 1993. Conversely, the attack in 1993 might just as easily have been the point where we took the exact same turn we took after 9/11, if George H.W. Bush had been re-elected.

9/29/2006 06:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Steve said...

Ya know, if we just apply a little "left logic" to what I said above, we could easily blame all the people who voted for Bill Clinton in 1992 for the attacks on 9/11. Its no more outlandish than President Bush putting explosives in the WTC. Nahhhh. We couldn't do that. ;)

9/29/2006 06:53:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Steve-

You'll have to check with my Minister of Doctrinal Enforcment, but I believe that the split into a parallel universe actually occurred long, long ago, in deep mythological time, with a calamity in a certain garden. But the split is recreated on a moment by moment basis. So yes, the 9-11 event was not the cause of the split, but just another occasion for us to vividly see its fruits.

9/29/2006 06:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Steve said...

I focused too much on the politics and not enough on the spritual. Be patient with me. I'm learning. I'll get your book as soon as I finsh with all of your archived posts. And I have a pretty impressive reading list from the kind suggestions of the other day. I'll get there, don't worry.

9/29/2006 07:06:00 PM  
Anonymous will said...

Steve - I think you make a real good point about 9/11 "exposing the split" the way that it has.

You're right, the Big Exposure seemingly could have come before 9/11. And Little Exposures have definitely occurred prior to 9/11.

Still, it did happen on 9/11/01 which sometimes makes me think that an Event was destined to happen on or around that date, one which would set up a kind of dividing line that would, as you point out, make clear what side one was on.

So my question to you is: What are the implications of such a dividing line? Given that spiritual lessons, indeed, spiritual growth, can come out of tragedies, does it serve an ultimate spiritual purpose?

9/30/2006 12:52:00 AM  
Blogger Dan Spomer said...

I have the luxury of NOT living in a vast poop pile of liberalism. So when I DO get to encounter Those From The Other Side, it is quite a remarkable experience for me.

Recently I was "trapped" for half the day with a couple graduates of our local Poop Farm, Evergreen State College. Honestly, the experience was as if a completely different language was being spoken. Even small talk was uncomfortable.

When our eyes met, it was as if they (or I) were not really there. When a polite joke was shared, it barely registered. And during the entire time, politics was NOT discussed.

Eventually, they retreated into their little world, I escaped back into mine and the time passed more quickly.It was like spending the day with someone else's reflection in a mirror.

Very, very strange.

9/30/2006 04:58:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Steve said..."It seems to me that this split happened well before 9/11. Moonbats didn’t originate on 9/12. "

Gagdad said …”You'll have to check with my Minister of Doctrinal Enforcment, but I believe that the split into a parallel universe actually occurred long, long ago”

Quite right, I've a series on my sight that traces this sordid affair out, beginning with part 4 through 7,
http://blogodidact.blogspot.com/2006/08/trees-that-bare-barren-fruit-pt-4.html
But the short answer is it began in the modern era with Descartes, widened with Rousseau, and began the full blown split with Kant, Hegel & Marx.

The initial cause was Descartes reintroducing the Cogito Ergo Sum - "I think, therefore I am" as the foundation for philosophy, meaning that your interior mental monologue is the starting point and ultimate proof for all intellectualizing and philosophical thought - not reality. With that as the root, Descartes went on to formulate an entire theory of physics based not on observation and experimentation, but on how he thought it would make sense for the universe to work. Newton’s theories which were based in fact, of course exposed the opposing "Physics" as patently foolish, but Descartes theories were still defended for years to come by the likes of Kant & Goethe.

Rousseau latched onto Descartes & promoted the "Me" based philosophy of emotional feelings being more 'authentic' than Reason, and then Kant constructed and enormously complex and convoluted (it's been their strategy ever since) philosophy, which he explicitly admitted was done because “I have found it necessary to deny knowledge, in order to make room for faith.” which codified such 'thoughts' into stone in the respectable academic world. Ironically Hegel followed him up by wiping religion off the map, and Marx all of them to new inverse heights which the West has wandering about punch drunk from ever since.

Essentially the split is that in the Moonbats minds (leftist primarily, but some righties too), what they want to Be, they believe IS, because it makes sense to THEM – because they want it too, and NO amount of grubby reality is going to change their minds!

I'm off to a football game, Go Spartans!

9/30/2006 07:49:00 AM  
Blogger Surafel said...

Being the stupid moderate/liberal that I am, I'll admit that I didn't quite get steve's extremely intellectual posted comment (I'm pretty sure that the nonsensical example of the "delusional left" probably played a role in my confusion).

But I hardly think that the left is delusional, or split from reality, especially given the current quagmire we find ourselves in (I'm talkin' about Iraq).

A split from reality is ignoring that Iraq is on the verge of civil war (if it isn't in one already). Shiites targeting Sunnis and vice versa isn't the opposition to the American occupation (or whatever you'd like to call it). It's a struggle for power, for the oil, it's retaliation after years of persecution at the hands of the minority group.

A split from reality is ignoring the horrible contracts given out to several corporations that have not even come close to accomplishing their goals.

Of course, I could just be imagining all of this. There have got to be plenty of hospitals in Iraq right? It's probably easy rebuilding what turned out to be a third world country (that's why we didn't really need well experienced people handling a post-war Iraq). And I think security is vastly improved. And I'm sure freedom of speech and all that good stuff is going over real well. In the end, all of the American and Iraqi lives lost will be a simple comma in the history books.


Let's be real. Clinton didn't get bin Laden. He failed. Bush still hasn't gotten bin Laden (unless we get a lovely October surprise). He has failed. Clinton didn't break down the walls between intelligence agencies. Bad. But then again, how much did bureaucratic competition play into our intel failures? Bush was not prepared come 9/11-- we were caught with our pants down. You can't deny any of this. Try me.

What I'm confused about is how much people actually thought Clinton (or even Bush) could do to stop 9/11. Do you really think that after the embassy bombings in 1998 Clinton could've launched a full scale military response? 12 Americans died that day. It probably would've been a little hard to get support from the American people. This was no Pearl Harbor or 9/11. There was nothing symbolic to gather support around. And I'm sure partisan bickering would've gotten in the way too.

I'm not exactly sure when military action could've come into play-- in '93? When no one really knew al Qaeda existed or what they could really do? They caught all but one of the conspirators involved in that plot... I think a military action might have been slight overreaction.

And lets not forget about the Cole bombing in 2000. Remember that Rice said that she did not think a military strike would have been effective (i.e. the concept of tit-for-tat). So unless you criticize the Bush administration for it's failure to respond to the attacks on the Cole, it's a moot point.

In all honesty, the intelligence failed us the most. This idea gets lost in all the partisan bickering. I think you all are split from reality if you think that 9/11 is solely Clinton's fault, or if you don't criticize Bush for screwing up before 9/11, and in the post-war planning in Iraq (and to some extent Afghanistan). If what I just said doesn't apply to you, then welcome back to reality.

But what do I know? I'm just delusional.

9/30/2006 01:55:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

9/30/2006 09:50:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

surafel said..."In all honesty, the intelligence failed us the most."

No, not “the intelligence failed", We failed to use our Intelligence by discarding the principles of our Founders ideals, convictions and conduct decades ago.

The real split from reality began when your progressive forbears’ began to push for dropping the principle of property rights in the early 1900's, then got bolder in the '30's, and by the time the 1950's rolled around, Eisenhower didn't see any real problem when the puffed up sheiks of the middle east nationalized the property of Western Oil companies. They might have been backwards, but they could spot a pack of fools from across the globe, and they knew a good mark when they saw one.

With Carter's hostage fiasco, and Reagan yielding to the cowardly congress after the first Marine barracks truck bombing, the terrorist sympathizers couldn't believe their run of Luck. When Bush the 1st did nothing after the Ayatollah threatened American Booksellers with death on our soil if they dared to sell "The Satanic Verses" our fate was sealed. The only thing Clinton’s dalliances did was to enable 9/11 to happen a year or two sooner than it might have otherwise.

What level of respect is any tinpot dictator going to have for a nation whose 'Intellectual leaders' chant in the streets "No blood for Oil!" or other such similar suicidal nonsense? If you didn't understand, rest assured that they did understand that there is no significant difference between that and "No blood for Boston!", they just need time to pack a larger lunch before coming to collect.

If you don't have property rights, if you don't enforce and Fight for your property rights, you can have no basis for Individual Rights at all.

Case in point:

"Do you really think that after the embassy bombings in 1998 Clinton could've launched a full scale military response? 12 Americans died that day. It probably would've been a little hard to get support from the American people. "

After all, it's just 12 Americans, what of it? No need to bother defending that, "No blood for People!"

"Being the stupid moderate/liberal that I am" glad you're aware of it , "I'll admit that I didn't quite get steve's extremely intellectual posted comment" Problem getting your verb tenses to agree? What was your problem, you did or didn't pay attention in school? (Aren’t snidely superior remarks just the mostest?!)

You don't have a grip on the most fundamental requirements of civilized life, but you want to put down people who are trying to better understand the world and their place in it. You're not a Liberal, you don't rise to that level, you're a leftist, and whether moderate or hardcore is irrelevant - pathetic sophistry is embarrassing to behold in any degree.

9/30/2006 09:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Joseph said...

Question Van:
If the State of Indiana seizes my property for creation of a road or a utility of some kind, do I have the right to get the help of my friends to overthrow State government? And if I do, what principle of the Founding Fathers should I invoke?

10/01/2006 06:21:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Joseph said...
Question Van:
If the State of Indiana seizes my property for creation of a road or a utility of some kind, do I have the right to get the help of my friends to overthrow State government? And if I do, what principle of the Founding Fathers should I invoke?

Joseph? You've struck me as better informed than that (Thanks for the Shakespeare book recommendation)... the last clause in the Fifth Amendment "; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation. " is there for just that situation. (By the way, here’s an excellent link to Center for Constitutional Studies key documents in the evolution of freedom from 1100a.d. through our founding documents. The parent site National Humanities Institute has numerous essays concerning the humanities as influenced by Irving Babbitt whose idea of Humanities endorsed a broad knowledge of various religious traditions – Gagdad may be aware that he had a big influence on Richard Weaver’s thought)

But beyond that, how did you manage to extend my comments about the importance of Property Rights, to overthrowing the State Government? Personally, I would have preferred that the Gov't didn't have the right of eminent domain, but I recognize the difficulty of the question. However, what with the events of the last hundred years, and the erosion of the concept of Individual Rights, which not surprisingly began with property rights in the form of money, we now have situations where local Gov't's are trying to extend eminent domain from the Founders idea of necessary public use, to the preferences and whims of public officials, as was recently sparked by the Kelo decision of the Supreme Court. And that we do need to fight tooth and nail - metaphorically speaking, as is being done in courts and legislatures across the land.

For the record, as long as we have the Right of free speech (keep an eye on campaign finance law...), then there is still the potential of scraping the accreted crud of the last hundred years from the Constitution, and nothing would justify even the discussion of overthrowing our Gov't. at any level.

10/01/2006 07:47:00 AM  
Anonymous Joseph said...

I only ask because you seem to imagine that Great Britain had the right, with the help of the CIA, to overthrow the government of Iran because its property was seized. And I agree that it was an injustice that the property was seized, but I am in disagreement that the proper response is overthrow. I agree, of course, that property rights are of paramount importance. On the other hand they are not unconditional. If someone steals from me, I do not have the right to kill them.

10/01/2006 01:36:00 PM  

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