Sunday, May 15, 2005

Roundup

If you haven't been reading "The American Conservative," you've been missing great pieces like this.

Stephen Baskerville argues that no-fault divorce has proven to be an attack on family viability that has largely criminalized private life by putting the power of the state in the corner of whichever parent, usually the mother, wants to dissolve a family. The surge in divorce and unmarried childbearing have political consequences and serve as an engine for the intervention of the state into private life, opening family life to unprecedented state control.

Here is a bizarre editorial from the NY Times defending the creation of chimeras, or animal-human hybrids for the purpose of "science." The Times says, "We are already partly down the path of mixing human and animal cells or organs. Although it once seemed odd and unsettling, no one worries much anymore about transplanting pig valves into human hearts or human fetal tissue into mice. The key reason may be that these manipulations don't visibly change the fundamental nature of either the human or the animal." I don't expect editorialists at the Times to give much thought to Imago Dei, but maybe these jokers could read "Frankenstein," or at least rent the movie. The editorial concludes on this note: "Research that some consider scary today may be required by regulators tomorrow." Sounds like Berlin, circa 1935.

Over at Chronicles, Tom Fleming discourses on the ideology of Western suicide:

In the United States, the President makes grandiose speeches about waging a “War on Terror,” but leading members of his own party have been subsidized by the Albanian terrorists in Kosovo, and one of the dominant conservative leaders in the Republican Party, Grover Norquist, has forged an alliance with Islamic groups that have transparent ties to terrorist organizations. Karl Rove says publicly that Norquist has done nothing wrong. Echoing Gertrude Stein, Rove dismisses the scandal with the quip, “There’s no there there.” This is like the child who hears a burglar and pulls the covers over his eyes. Until American Christians learn to deny their votes to any party or politician who collaborates with jihadists, they will have no one to blame but themselves.


Allegedly, the American economy is humming along, with 274,000 jobs created in April. Of those jobs, 256,000 were in the private sector. Paul Craig Roberts breaks down the figures: "58,000 in leisure and hospitality (primarily restaurants and bars), 47,000 in construction, 29,200 in wholesale and retail trade, 28,000 in health care and social assistance, 17,300 in administrative and support services (primarily temps), 11,700 in transportation and warehousing, 8,800 in real estate. A few scattered jobs in other service categories completes the picture." To make the figures even more dire, 60% of new service jobs are going to Hispanics. It is a recurring theme in Roberts' writings that the economic climate has changed dramatically due to the collapse of socialism and the rise of new technologies: "The collapse of world socialism and the rise of the high speed Internet forced Americans to compete head to head in the same global labor market with low wage foreign labor working with identical capital and technology. When US and European corporations move their manufacturing, research and development offshore or contract with offshore producers to supply the products and services that they market, the jobs and associated incomes are also transferred abroad." Caught up in the free-trade delusion, economists are unable to see that outsourcing is not just a manifestation of the Ricardian theory of comparative advantage, but will ultimately hollow out our economy: "The substitution of foreign labor for American labor allows executives to reduce costs and increase profits, thus producing large bonuses for themselves and capital gains for shareholders. The long run effect, however, is to destroy the US consumer market and to reduce US corporations to a brand name with a sales force selling foreign made products to Americans employed in third world jobs."

I've been interested for some time in thinking about how the state encourages licentiousness as a means of social control. I've been reading a book by theologian R. J. Rushdoony on the creeds and councils of the early church. In a chapter of forgiveness, Rushdoony says:

The gospel of the tyrant state becomes the assertion that liberty is license to sin, and slavery is the liberty of moral self-government. In every such state, the courts and schools decree and interpret liberty as freedom from morality. The people are deluded into believing they are more free people because they now possess a license to fornicate, to commit adultery, indulge in perversions freely, and read pornography. Meanwhile, as the people wallow in the “new freedom,” the state rapidly extends its powers over the people, over family life, economics, education, business, labor, and agriculture, over the churches, art, science, and all things else.


Rushdoony argues that political saviors want to perpetuate rather than eliminate sin, because sin is an instrument of political power. Additionally, a moralistic religion is necessary to perpetuate the regime so that men are racked by guilt and more easily manipulated. Without a means of alleviating guilt, i.e., forgiveness, men are in bondage to their conscience. Such men lack the moral courage to make a stand against injustice. Rushdoony says, "For a sinner to war against sin is comparable to warring against himself. As a result, a corrupt people will indulge in complaints against tyranny but will be impotent in combating it.” So the battle against statism must first be waged from our pulpits, where we must preach a Gospel that liberates rather then enslaves and live in the freedom that Christ died to give us.

Looks like the Washington Post is finally getting around to something I wrote about a week ago.

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