In the wake of Friday morning’s bloodbath at a Colorado movie theater, America struggles to figure out who or what to blame.
They’ve obviously ruled out the shooter.
James Holmes, 24, will be arraigned in a Colorado courtroom this morning and charged with a spree killing at a midnight debut screening of the new Batman film The Dark Knight Rises that at last count left 12 dead and 58 wounded. Based on the total number of victims, the event would constitute the largest lone-wolf mass shooting in American history. Although he reportedly surrendered to police outside the theater clad from head to toe in riot gear and told them he was the “Joker,” he has apparently not formally confessed and has yet to be convicted, so journalistic etiquette dictates that Holmes be called the alleged gunman.
But even if he hurled the tear-gas canisters and fired the rounds, no man is an island, correct? At best, we’re all tiny non-autonomous fiefdoms in a sprawling continent. We are mere cells in a giant organism, little pieces in a huge puzzle, and when one of the pieces doesn’t quite fit anymore, the rest of the puzzle must be blamed.
So obviously “society” is to blame. But not all of society, because that would include the countless members of society who are blaming society for this. So what part of society is to blame?
Of the various manifestations of the egalitarian cultural revolution that has transpired in the Western world over the past half century, none have been quite so enduring or become so deeply rooted in the culture of modern society as the so-called “sexual revolution.” Indeed, it might well be argued that even the supposed commitment of Western cultural elites in the early twenty-first century to the ethos of racial egalitarianism is not quite as profound as their commitment to the preservation and expansion of the victories of the sexual revolution. The sexual revolution itself brings with it many of its own manifestations. These include the now prevailing feminist ethos, the liberalization of both popular opinion and public legislation concerning sexual conduct, abortion and contraception, divorce, the normalization of homosexuality accompanied by the growth of powerful homosexual political interest groups, and the identification of an ever-growing list of “gender identity” or “sexual orientation” groups who are subsequently assigned their position in the Left’s pantheon of the oppressed.
Of course, the ongoing institutionalization of the values of the sexual revolution is not without its fierce critics. Predictably, the most strident criticism of sexual liberalism originates from the clerical and political representatives of the institutions of organized Christianity and from concerned Christian laypeople. Public battles over sexual issues are depicted in the establishment media as conflicts between progressive-minded, intelligent and educated liberals versus ignorant, bigoted, sex-phobic reactionaries. Dissident conservative media outlets portray conflicts of this type as pitting hedonistic, amoral sexual libertines against beleaguered upholders of the values of faith, family, and chastity. Yet this “culture war” between liberal libertines and Christian puritans is not what should be the greatest concern of those holding a radical traditionalist or conservative revolutionary outlook.
The hoarsely ululating throats of the “pro-life” and “pro-choice” movements screamed at each other outside a small abortion clinic in Jackson, Mississippi last week as a federal judge cock-blocked a state lawand allowed the clinic to stay open for now. The law would have effectively shut down the Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which is Mississippi’s last remaining abortion clinic.
Few political issues are as supercharged with moral hysteria as abortion. What’s moral, as always, is in the eye of the moralizer. Outside the clinic and in the comments section of every online news story about the case, there were the requisite dueling accusations of moral turpitude and hypocrisy, of which side values basic human dignity and which doesn’t. The pro-lifers spoke of a legal holocaust of unborn fetuses while the pro-choicers bemoaned state-sanctioned reproductive slavery.
One side warned of bloody coat hangers from back-alley abortions, while the other toted garish picket signs of legally aborted shredded embryos. And all of it was a relentlessly bloody power struggle for the moral upper hand: On one extreme you have those who believe one drop of spilled male semen is an abomination before the Lord, while on the other were the super-empowered mega-sluts who instead choose to sacralize their “sexuality” and blithely eject unwanted fetuses from their wombs with the regularity of old toasters disgorging the morning’s burnt toast.
Minimizing Marriage: Marriage, Morality, and the Law, by Elizabeth Brake, Oxford University Press, 240 pp., $24.95.
Opponents of same-sex marriage are quick to raise the specter of polygamy. If “everybody should have the right to marry,” Rick Santorum asked on the campaign trail earlier this year, then “what aboutthree men?” While Santorum clearly intended this quip as a reductio ad absurdum of calls for marriage equality, the Arizona State University philosopher Elizabeth Brake argues in Minimizing Marriage that recognizing polygamous and polyamorous unions is not only required by justice but doesn’t go far enough.
For Brake, marriage not only should not be restricted to opposite-sex couples, or indeed to couples at all. It constitutes unjust discrimination, she argues, to restrict marriage to romantic or sexual relationships. Instead, the social and legal status of marriage should be available to “caring relationships” of all kinds (though not to Santorum’s further bugaboos of “man on child” and “man on dog” unions, since parties to marriage contracts must be legally competent). Moreover, the terms of such marriages should be flexible, rather than fixed by a state-imposed one-size-fits-all model; one might, as in one of Brake’s examples, choose to cohabit with a lover but confer one’s spousal health care benefits on an impoverished relative, and authority for end-of-life decisions on a close friend. The result is what Brake calls “minimal marriage”: marriage with minimal requirements for recognition.
Any discussion concerning the natural rights of man in relation to state sovereignty, independence from tyranny, self-determination, and de-centralization, certainly wouldn’t be complete without bringing awareness and understanding towards today’s important cause of Southern Nationalism.
John P. George, a member of the League of the South who holds a B.A. degree in sociology and philosophy from the University of Georgia, an M.A. degree in historical sociology from the University of New Brunswick, and a Ph.D. from Mississippi State University, writes that, “Southern independence is based on the belief that there are basic and distinct differences in culture, religion, political ideology, and ethnicity that form a nation distinct from the North. Ethnically the white population of the South has been predominantly from Great Britain and Ireland and northern Europe and Protestant Christian in religion. Politically the South has long been more conservative than the North or West, and regardless of ethnic background (e.g., black, Cajun, or Cherokee) all Southerners share a common history and certain similarities in cuisine, language, and music.”
While filling my car with gasoline possibly derived from Middle Eastern oil, I spotted a billboard for a local clothing store called US ARABIA. Though the sign’s head-swaddled male and female models appear to be Caucasian, palefaces are scant in the area around this gas station, so I’ll presume the ad is targeted at an overwhelmingly black local population.
At the local Dunkin’ Donuts and Walgreens, I’ve noticed a surge of Georgia-born blacks in Muslim apparel. The festive Afro-nationalist dashikis so popular among American blacks twenty years ago have been replaced with what seems like a dress rehearsal for the global caliphate.
Although Islam and black nationalism share a flame-belching, sword-swinging hatred for Western Civ, it’s an odd pairing when you consider history. American blacks who dump Christianity and shack up with Islam seem to think they’re flipping the bird at the creed that enslaved their ancestors, but they’re only swapping it for a religion that has enslaved their ancestors for far longer.
The idea of collective historical guilt is often wielded as a psychological weapon, and civilizations that allow themselves to be inoculated with the Guilt Germ can be conquered without a shot being fired. Islamic apologists and Western oikophobes scoff and spit and snort that anyone would dare draw equivalencies between the transatlantic and the Arab slave trades, yet the historical record laughs in their faces.
“Bilderberg conspiracies have become a handicap for the Liberty Movement,” says conservative commentator Jack Hunter in a recent article. “Bilderberg conspiracy theorists have become a political handicap. The Birthers probably have a few interesting points to make, but this doesn’t change the fact that their argument is toxic. It doesn’t change the fact that their rhetoric damages conservatives’ reputations every time a Birther opens his mouth.”
Hunter is right, and we do appreciate that someone else is speaking out against conspiracy theorists, but at the Skeptical Libertarian, we oppose conspiracy theories not merely because they are bad press for libertarianism, but because they are not supported by the facts. If the libertarian movement gained influence as a result of its proclivity for paranoid conspiracies, we would still oppose them. First and foremost, our commitment is to reality—popular or not—and to a conversation based on reason and evidence. Intellectual honesty is our core value, and scientific skepticism is the surest way to preserve that integrity.
This analysis is consistent with my own. The combination of widening class divisions and demographic and cultural change means the Repugs are screwed.
National Republicans may have some serious thinking to do. Their presumptive nominee, Mitt Romney looks to be in serious trouble on multiple fronts today.
Governor Romney has lost ground to President Obama and is now trailing in all of the national polls with the exception of the Rasmussen Reports poll which has been the poll most favorable to Governor Romney. Governor Romney is now tied with President Obama in the latest Rasmussen poll, which is asteep decline in that poll for Governor Romney relative to President Obama since early June.
AFP Photo/Getty Images
Swinging sex parties are slowing finding a place among Saudi Arabia`s foreign residents and elite. One foreign couple gave a sneak peak into their private lives that could cost them their freedom or more in the conservative Islamic kingdom.
The couple, living in the capital Riyadh, says they organize so-called “wife-swapping” parties once a month with up to five couples participating.
“It is something we do and we are not ashamed of it,” said Tara, who asked that her full name not to be disclosed. Partner swapping is the best way “to find out more about ourselves sexually,” she argues.
From The Guardian.
Personally, I like this ruling.
by Kate Connolly
Jewish and Muslim leaders were united on Wednesday in their condemnation of a German court’s decision to in effect outlaw the circumcision of boys after a judge deemed that the religious practice amounted to bodily harm.
Representatives of the two religious communities called the ruling insensitive and discriminatory, saying it was an attack on centuries of religious tradition.
A judge at a Cologne court said that the circumcision of minors went against a child’s interests because it led to a physical alteration of the body, and because people other than the child were determining its religious affiliation.
Religious leaders said the court had stepped into a minefield with its decision, which undermined their religious authority and contravened Germany‘s constitution.
Ali Demir, chairman of the Religious Community of Islam in Germany, said: “I find the ruling adversarial to the cause of integration and discriminatory against all the parties concerned.”
Dieter Graumann, president of Germany’s Central Council of Jews, called it “an egregious and insensitive measure” which amounted to “an unprecedented and dramatic intervention in religious communities’ right of determination”.
The ruling followed a lengthy legal battle, sparked when a Muslim couple decided to have their son circumcised, specifically for religious reasons, by a Muslim doctor in Cologne. The doctor, identified only as Dr K, carried out the circumcision on the four-year old boy in November 2010, before giving the wound four stitches. The same evening, he visited the family at home to check up on the boy. When the boy began bleeding again two days later, his parents took him to the casualty department of Cologne’s University hospital. The hospital contacted the police, who then launched an investigation. The doctor was charged with bodily harm, and the case was taken to court.
While the court acquitted Dr. K on the grounds that he had not broken any law, it concluded that circumcision of minors for religious reasons should be outlawed, and that neither parental consent nor religious freedom justified the procedure. It ruled that in future doctors who carried out circumcisions should be punished.
The court weighed up three articles from the basic law: the rights of parents, the freedom of religious practice and the right of the child to physical integrity, before coming to the conclusion that the procedure was not in the interests of the child.
Well, here it is, folks: The Supreme Court’s ruling upholding the “individual mandate” provision in the Affordable Care Act, aka “ObamaCare.” As of 2014, all Americans will pay a portion of their taxes to an insurance company of their choice instead of to Uncle Sam (or Uncle will come calling).
Canned consternation from the usual critics on the right, of course — you know, the people who brought you HMOs, Medicare Part D, and RomneyCare, all in the name of “free enterprise.” Forcing you to buy “insurance,” whether for yourself or someone else, is only bad when Democrats or New York’s “Five Families” do it.
In reality, the right should be celebrating CannibalCare … er, ObamaCare. Not only did Republicans lay three decades of its groundwork, not only was the template for the law laid down by none other than GOP presidential Mitt Romney, not only was the deciding SCOTUS vote cast by a George W. Bush appointee, Chief Justice John Roberts, but it’s the ultimate triumph of “privatization.”
Huh? What? Yes, “privatization.”
When libertarians, paleocons, neocons, and Republicans are confronted with a shrieking liberal they usually shoo it away. That’s easy if you don’t live in New York City, Berkeley, LA, or Madison, but those of us mired here in the jungles of hysteria have to come up with other solutions.
It takes a certain type of masochist to live this Sisyphean lifestyle. We can’t bitch about Obama’s ridiculous spending because Bill Maher told them Obama has spent less than any other president. We can’t rail against Fast and Furious because Chris Hayes told them Obama is pro-gun. Whenever you criticize the president, their trained response is that you can’t handle his blackness—oy vey!
I’ve found the only way to calm this yelping beast is to speak to it in its own language.
A German court has ruled that parents can’t have their sons circumcised on religious grounds in a move which has angered Muslim and Jewish groups in the country.
The court in Cologne decided that a legal guardian’s authority over a child does not allow them to subject them to the procedure, which the court called minor bodily harm, reports The Financial Times Deutschland.
From The UK Libertarian.
Davy, the UK Libertarian, hoists moralistic tax-happy statists on their own petard. Logical, potent, and apt, if emotionally-oversaturated at times.
[WARNING: The following article contains images that some people may (and should) find disturbing. If you don’t want to see fairly graphic images then stop reading now or scroll down with a soft touch]
David Cameron has described Jimmy Carr as “Morally wrong” for allegedly paying as low as 1% on his income taxes thanks to a scheme known as K2, advised by his accountant as perfectly legal and used by celebrities on both the left and the right.
But he’s not not behaving unethically, in fact, morally, he’s in the right.
To explain why, I will be asking you to stick with me through a seemingly unrelated tangent but, if we’re lucky, it will tie up in the end.
The following earnings are made up for the sake of simplicity but the logic holds true whether you scale up or down:
To begin let’s suppose Jimmy Carr is a model tax-payer and let’s say he earns £1,000,000 gross profit in the 2012 tax year. Without any exemptions and filing purely as an individual he would expect to pay close to 50% directly to the Inland Revenue. At that rate he is handing over approximately £500,000 to David Cameron’s government.
Let’s take a look at some of the ways that £500,000 will be spent once the government has its (apparently righteous) hands on it:
At least £44,000 of this half a million will go towards “Defence”. The quandry for the informed and ethical man (but not the amoral/immoral) when pondering this contribution, however, is that “Defense” is really just a euphemism for Offense. Still etched in the memories of anybody who takes a passing interest in politics (regardless of which side of the fence they fall) is that spark of defiance in February of 2003 when almost a million people marched through London in protest against the proposal to wage war against Iraq. They chanted “No more war!” They screamed the justification was immoral. Some even cried for people they had never met, guessing before the fact just how horrific the consequences could be. They were right.
Not seeing how what he said was “offensive”. Any sensible totalitarian disarms their citizenry/”undesirables” to make it easier to oppress and prey on them.
Talk to the JPFO—they’ll fill you in!
Shame he felt the need to backpedal for being right.
By Paige Lavender
“All I said was gun control was implemented, and then governments proceeded to violate human rights,” Wurzelbacher said, according to the Toledo Blade. “Nowhere did I mention the Holocaust or was I even talking about it.”
Wurzelbacher sparked controversy when he posted a web video Monday featuring the following remarks:
“In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were exterminated. In 1939, Germany established gun control. From 1939 to 1945, six million Jews and seven million others unable to defend themselves were exterminated. I love America.”
Wurzelbacher was quickly criticized by the National Jewish Democratic Council, a pro-Democratic group, whose President and CEO David Harris said the congressional candidate’s comparison was “beyond the pale” and called on Wurzelbacher to “apologize and remove this offensive video immediately.”
While Wurzelbacher didn’t respond to that criticism, he did tell one Twitter user who hit Wurzelbacher’s “ignorance” that he was “obviously not watching my video.”
Swedish courts in sensible verdict shocker!
Read all about it at The Local.
i just received a letter yesterday from a fellow swede saying “…his ex tried to get him convicted for sexual abuse of their child so she would get full custody, but when that didn’t work out, she tried to convict him for having child pornography…” – an interesting detail not mentioned in any english report on the case i’ve read
Japanese manga comics depicting children in sexual poses are not child pornography, Sweden’s Supreme Court has ruled, overturning a high-profile conviction of a Swedish translator.
In a ruling issued on Friday, the court acquitted Simon Lundström, who had been found guilty of child pornography crimes by two lower courts before appealing his case to Sweden’s highest court.
“I’m obviously very relieved, in part because it makes life easier for me personally, but most of all I’m generally relieved for Sweden as a whole,” Lundström told the TT news agency in an email.
“It would have been very hard for me to relate to Sweden as a country if it turned out to be a place that prohibited certain expressions of the imagination.”
According to the Supreme Court’s ruling, the drawings are pornographic and they do portray children.
However, because the cartoons represent imaginary figures there is no way they could be mistaken for real children.
“The criminalization of possession of the drawings would otherwise exceed what is necessary with regard to the purpose which has led to the restriction on freedom of expression and freedom of information,” the court said in a statement.
Lundström, described by Swedish media as a top manga expert, was found guilty by two lower courts of having 39 drawings portraying figures in sexual poses stored on the hard drive of his computer.
In his initial trial, he explained that he had retrieved the pictures in order to stay up to date with the latest developments in the Japanese comic genre.
A district court fined him 25,000 kronor ($3,500) but an appeals court lowered the sum to 5,600 kronor.
During the Supreme Court trial, the images were shown on large screens in the courtroom. The pastel-coloured pictures showed children in different states of undress.