Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Nuns Forced To Pay For Contraception

NUNS FORCED TO PAY FOR OBAMACARE CONTRACEPTION:

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit ruled today that the Little Sisters of the Poor must abide by Obamacare’s contraceptive mandate. You may recall that the Little Sisters took their religious liberty objection to the mandate all the way to the Supreme Court last summer–and won an injunction therefrom, pending disposition on the merits by the Tenth Circuit. But when considering the merits, the Tenth Circuit nonetheless ruled against them.
The First Amendment is nearly dead; Federal Courts are now freed from the US Constitution, as they make law themselves rather than compare law to constitutional restrictions on government powers to make such law, as they are directed to do.

Now that we understand that there are no constitutional restrictions, we also are free to behave as if there are no constitutional restrictions. Why should scofflaw apply only to the Left?

29 comments:

Hugo Pelland said...

As a follow-up to the comment I posted a couple of hours ago, I think here we have an example of how I see exaggeration on your part, Stan. I don't think it's a good thing that the Little Sisters are forced to do something, anything, by the federal government, but how can one jump from:

- It's not 'ok' to force the Health Insurance provided by the Little Sisters to include birth control

to:

- The First Amendment is nearly dead; Federal Courts are now freed from the US Constitution

As I understand it (but I could be wrong as I don't get all the details honestly) they are not even literally forced to provide birth control coverage themselves. The problem is that they did not want to apply for some extra exemption:
http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/247850-court-rules-nuns-group-must-comply-with-obamacare-birth-control-mandate

But in any case, the point is that even if one is horrified by the fact that they need to provide birth control through their health care coverage, how is that in any way preventing them from exercising their own faith, their own religious practice, their own freedom of speech, ideas, thoughts, etc? If none of the participant in the health care program care for birth control, then nothing even changes. Yet, this is supposed to be an example of how the First Amendment is nearly dead?

Stan said...

Hugo,
I cannot find anyway to communicate with you it appears. If you cannot see that a government based in "liberty for all" and "free exercise of religion" which forces someone to do things which violate their moral principles as a "new moral dictate from the government" is a fundamental moral wrong, then there is nothing to be said.

Hugo Pelland said...

No problem Stan, thanks for trying!

It's unfortunate that as soon as you hit a disagreement you jump to generalization regarding your interlocutor's beliefs and motives, and it seems to stem from a profound disdain for the current state of our society, a form of cynicism which I cannot help you with. And I can assure you that you are wrong to conclude that I am not in favor of a government based in "liberty for all" and "free exercise of religion", and I am also in favor of true Free Speech unlike what you concluded on the other thread. You refuse to discuss the limitations and exceptions that may apply, on a case by case basis, just like any other situations in life, simply because we disagree on some details. This kind of exaggeration leads nowhere and I am thus not going to try to pursue it. It's your choice to be so extreme, cynical and unhappy. I see beauty, happiness and progress all around, even if some cases are shocking sometimes, as you correctly point out. But this does not make the overall picture any worse, and I truly wish you could see the same or could at least discuss why it's not all bad.

Take care!

Stan said...

You are not here to help with any cynicism on my part. You are here to deny that anything I say has any truth value in your world. Your world sees an infinite spectrum of grey areas which it needs to judge and regulate, so long as it involves your moral concepts as you see fit to engage them. That world is not the world into which I was born and lived for many decades. That world is not related to the principles upon which the free USA was founded. It is, however, Marxist and a redefiniton of reality for creating a bubble of belief far outside of our constitutional guarantees.

And in order for you to see nothing but " beauty, happiness and progress all around" you have to believe that killing preborn humans and selling their organs is "progress"; that attacking the moral worldviews which aren't yours is "progress", that silencing opposition by firing and financial penury, followed with death wishes and imprisonment is "progress", and that all of that is "beauty and happiness". I don't believe you for a single minute. However, if that is your truth, then fine, go on and live in blissful ignorance of what is going on, keep on denying that any culture war exists, that there even are such things as SJWs, and enjoy your life on the beach or wherever it is that you escape all news of the day.

I do understand, to a degree, why you are happy; the Atheists and Leftists are winning. And if you cannot remember history, then utopia probably sounds like happiness and beauty.

I suggest that you read Solzhenitsyn, who observed Leftist utopia first hand. And read his warnings. Or just go back to the beach, whatever.

Hugo Pelland said...

Hi again Stan,

So there is nothing to be said, but you insist on writing yet another comment lying (not on purpose I hope) about my opinions and intentions. I hope you don't mind if I reply and try to correct some of the points, while expressing a few more opinions since, as I was complaining before, you keep inserting new topics after new topics... so there is always something more to talk about, but it creates long post with lots of distractions unfortunately.

"You are not here to help with any cynicism on my part."
It was an expression... was its usage that wrong? Anyway, of course I cannot literally help you with that; I am just expressing an opinion about how I don't see much good in being as cynical as you, regarding what you complain about on your blog.

" You are here to deny that anything I say has any truth value in your world."
I keep insisting that the exact opposite is true; I think 'most' of what you say has truth to it, even if we disagree on so many things. My interest is in understanding how we reach different conclusions on so many topics despite having similar core values: tolerance, equality, justice, freedom of speech, religion, assembly, thoughts, etc... The problem is that you refuse to acknowledge that 'we' share common values, and by 'we' I don't mean just me and you, as most of us 'all' would agree that these values matter. It's when they conflict with each other that problems surface.

"Your world sees an infinite spectrum of grey areas which it needs to judge and regulate, so long as it involves your moral concepts as you see fit to engage them."
Living in 'grey areas' is part of life. And yes, we do need to use our moral concepts, among many other things, to arrive at conclusions and decided if we go black or white, when we have to. You cannot pretend you don't do the same; your writings are a reflection of your own moral concepts applied to current affairs. You comment on things that shock you, that hurt your moral concepts.

"you have to believe that killing preborn humans and selling their organs is "progress""
So much to say about abortion, a disgusting but necessary procedure... Anyway, the term "Preborn humans" is an emotional appeal, used by anti-choice / pro-life people who are not able to discuss the topic of abortion using logic, reason and science facts. It's a sign of emotions winning of rationality. What's being aborted is not a human by any definition of the term. If it were a human, when the "abortion" is performed very late for instance, you know what we call it... a c-section, and the human baby actually live.

But of course, you disagree with that and would rather force a woman to relinquish her personal freedom, because 'that' is a good exception to personal freedom of course. Because the irony here is that even if we are to consider fetus to be humans, then the argument is that we should force a person to sustain another person using their own body, an even greater violation of their personal freedom.

Moreover, because these topics are never approached rationally by the anti-choice crowd, viral videos like the one you posted surface once in a while, with just the right words to make you feel a strong emotional reaction. Yet...
http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2015/07/14/lila_rose_and_live_action_have_another_planned_parenthood_sting_yet_again.html
http://gawker.com/no-planned-parenthood-is-not-selling-aborted-fetal-bod-1717823538

Hugo Pelland said...

"that attacking the moral worldviews which aren't yours is "progress""
Here I am trying my best to have meaningful discussions with someone who has a different worldview, but I am the one who is 'attacking' the moral worldviews which aren’t mine? You are the one with a blog whose main purpose is to discredit one of the aspects of my worldview, so how can you imply that 'attacking' is a bad thing when that's what you do every day by exposing what you consider to be the worst crap the AtheoLeft does?

"I don't believe you for a single minute. However, if that is your truth, then fine, go on and live in blissful ignorance of what is going on"
But do you even try to understand what I write? I don't know... again, you said you were done so you can just ignore all that and move on. I also should not spend that much time on these things anyway.

It's just that you are both interesting to talk to, because of the divergence of opinions, but also extremely difficult to talk to, as you just want to be negative as soon as you see something you disagree with, and never, ever, acknowledge that there is some common ground we agree on. You could start with that and try to explain why your position is better, based on some obvious things we agree on, but no, you don't want to do that. You want to 'ask' others to prove their positions, but yours is the good one by default, apparently... as I never see you explain what you actually think; you just point out to things you think are horrible!

And yes, I do see a lot of issues in the world. You are missing the point again. It's just that even if there are ugly things, there are also a lot of insanely beautiful things that far outweigh the bad, if you choose to focus on them. I don't see how we can continue to try improving the world we live in if we focus on what's horrible. Wouldn’t we forget what we are fighting for in the first place?

"I do understand, to a degree, why you are happy; the Atheists and Leftists are winning. And if you cannot remember history, then utopia probably sounds like happiness and beauty."
Yes, progress is winning. And yes, I get the sarcasam here since you think I rejoice in eveil things... However, even if humans don't always go forward, as we introduced a lot of problems along the way, in general things are getting better. But it's always more difficult, on average, for the older generations to swallow. It's just human nature; we are afraid of change and tend to become more conservative the older we get. In the end though, the long march of reason continues:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uk7gKixqVNU

"Or just go back to the beach, whatever."
I wish, but because I abide by this good principle of work/reward you mentioned recently, I have a lot of work to do, especially these days. And the water is too cold in the Bay of San Francisco anyway ;-)

Thanks again for your time and, sorry, that was again too long I think...

Stan said...

”I am just expressing an opinion about how I don't see much good in being as cynical as you, regarding what you complain about on your blog.”

You, on the other hand, consider yourself delighted with the world, which you think is wonderful. We obviously do not live in the same universe, with the same forcing functions, cause and effect. You are denying that such things even exist, and that is your basis for conversation.

Well, those things do exist, whether you deny it or not. Denialism is what happened in Germany in the 1930s as totalitarianism slowly boiled the frog in the pot.

And,
”The problem is that you refuse to acknowledge that 'we' share common values, and by 'we' I don't mean just me and you, as most of us 'all' would agree that these values matter. It's when they conflict with each other that problems surface.”

We do not share common values. The definitions of the terms you used have changed. Tolerance, for example, no longer means to tolerate, as I have pointed out at length. Apparently too much length. And specific examples have no effect on you – in fact, you think that grey areas exist which just might demand the opposite of tolerance, just as I have said.

Again. We do not share common values. And all you have done here is to deny that there is any problem in the wonderful universe which you inhabit, and that I should believe the exact same thing that you do: denial.

Here is an example of our diametrically opposite values:
”Living in 'grey areas' is part of life. And yes, we do need to use our moral concepts, among many other things, to arrive at conclusions and decided if we go black or white, when we have to. You cannot pretend you don't do the same; your writings are a reflection of your own moral concepts applied to current affairs. You comment on things that shock you, that hurt your moral concepts.”

You do even connect in the slightest manner with what I have said. Your moral concepts are self-derived. Thus they are inconsequential.

Perhaps being that short and blunt will help you understand how exactly polar opposite our worldviews are. And since you still complain about having too much to consider, I will stop here.

If I have time, I will post an article on the logic which is the foundation of Atheist self-derived morality. It is at the crux of our constitutional and cultural crisis.

If you actually wish me to deconstruct the remainder of your comment, then say so.

Hugo Pelland said...

Hello,

You said:
"You, on the other hand, consider yourself delighted with the world, which you think is wonderful. We obviously do not live in the same universe, with the same forcing functions, cause and effect. You are denying that such things even exist, and that is your basis for conversation. "

But I had said:
" And yes, I do see a lot of issues in the world. You are missing the point again. It's just that even if there are ugly things, there are also a lot of insanely beautiful things that far outweigh the bad, if you choose to focus on them. I don't see how we can continue to try improving the world we live in if we focus on what's horrible. Wouldn’t we forget what we are fighting for in the first place?"

So please, can you at least either correct what you meant, or explain why you think that what I write does not mean what we see at face value? I clearly indicated that there are 'such things' that exist, that bad things happen, that the world is not all pretty, but you wrote the exact opposite... you pretend I am denying everything... and you even say it's a basis for conversation? But I am trying to discuss specific issues, problematic issues, these things that you think are horrific, but you refuse to discuss them. All I see are gross generalization and attack on your enemies' character, lack of descent morality and ability to use reason and logic.

Regarding values in general, the same thing happens. There are actually no specific examples we ever got to discuss. You refuse to... So even if you did give long tirades on why you think SJWs are evil people, you simply refuse to discuss specific examples where there are competing values at play. You deny that, and prefer to claim that the definition changed so that you can maintain your moral high-ground where your definitions are right, your opinion is de facto the best, and everybody who disagrees with you on specific examples must have accepted a false definition. It's a wonderful virtuous circle where disagreement is met with charges of irrationality, since that's the only possible explanation when your views collide with others'.

For example, you simply refuse to acknowledge that right to Free Speech does not literally mean that it's 'ok' to say anything anytime; threatening to hurt someone, plotting a terrorist attack, publicly lying about someone, are all examples where one is allowed to speak freely, but may face legal consequences. But perhaps I am wrong, and you can explain that: do you literally believe that we should not try to prevent a terrorist attack solely based on what some people discussed among themselves because that's their right to free speech? Should we let them talk about it until it happens and only act when they are actually pointing guns at people or installing bombs?

I had written a lot more, but erased it, as I also decided that being shorter would be more productive. So if you do want to reply to the rest of my comment above, that might be interesting, but I did not want to take more of your time right away. You might think there is really no point in discussing specific examples and that would be fine too. Again, even if the tone might not sound particularly friendly during our exchanges, I do wish it remains civil and pleasant, but only if you are still interested, so let me know!

Cheers

Stan said...

Ok. I’ll go ahead and address these one by one, despite the length which you complain about.

” I don't see how we can continue to try improving the world we live in if we focus on what's horrible. Wouldn’t we forget what we are fighting for in the first place?"

This statement is both self-contradictory and yet non-sensical. We absolutely must focus on the horrible, as you put it, if we are not to be defeated by it. Ignoring it is just insane, like Obama ignoring the actual character of the Iranian Islamist government in his pursuit of a wonderful piece of paper for his Presidential Library. Then to claim that by fighting the horrible we forget what we are fighting for… another self-refuting statement.

I think that satisfies this request:
”explain why you think that what I write does not mean what we see at face value?”
If it does not, then I’ll try again, but just once.

”But I am trying to discuss specific issues, problematic issues, these things that you think are horrific, but you refuse to discuss them.”

Actually, what you have done is to deny that there is any concern, that there are any specific issues, that all you can see is progress, beauty and wonderfulness – or some such. Your condescending declarations by which you admit that bad things happen and are not pretty doesn’t mean that you think any of the concerns outlined by news items here are of any importance to you. You have placed my statements (with back-up news links and posts virtually daily) into the category of “cynicism”, which you cannot comprehend in light of your personal worldview which is, again, wonderful.

”All I see are gross generalization and attack on your enemies' character, lack of descent morality and ability to use reason and logic.”

Then you are not reading the blog, you are merely posting comments here. This comment is attached to a specific issue, government forcing the nuns to disobey their moral convictions. Your complaint has no merit, and is demonstrably false.

Stan said...

”Regarding values in general, the same thing happens. There are actually no specific examples we ever got to discuss. You refuse to...”

Actually, in the 8 years I’ve been doing this blog I have filled the side bar with specific values issues regarding Atheism and Atheists, as well as their relationship to Leftism now and historically. You obviously have not read that, and that is partially understandable because there are several thousand posts now. But there are specific categories for exactly your issue, AND I have written another article posted earlier today addressing the values problem with Atheism, Leftism and Free Thought. And I outlined in fair detail the values issues in my long reply to you. That was too long for you to read, apparently. So try the article today, I’m sure you’ll have comments on that.

”You deny that, and prefer to claim that the definition changed so that you can maintain your moral high-ground where your definitions are right, your opinion is de facto the best, and everybody who disagrees with you on specific examples must have accepted a false definition. It's a wonderful virtuous circle where disagreement is met with charges of irrationality, since that's the only possible explanation when your views collide with others'.”

And here is an example of trying to project your denialism onto me. I gave lengthy reasons and I have given examples including the daily news reports (only a few, not all of them) regarding the assaults of the Left on the nation. As I pointed out above, this very comment box is attached to a specific example. Apparently you do not accept the government’s assault on the nuns to be worthy of your concept of “specific examples”. Which, like much of what you say, leads me to conclude that you either don’t mean what you say, or you do mean to disconnect words from their meanings.

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Stan said...

”For example, you simply refuse to acknowledge that right to Free Speech does not literally mean that it's 'ok' to say anything anytime”

This is the standard Leftist excuse for taking over the meaning of the word “Free”, in Free Speech. Nothing the (specific example) flag vendor did was libel, not even slander, not even close to yelling “fire” in a theater, nor even close to “fighting words” in the strict legal sense. Free Speech is a negative right, which can be limited only under certain, very precise conditions. That is the content and the intent of the First Amendment. So yes, it actually IS ok to say anything at anytime, if it is not one of the above specific limitations. Your “grey areas” do not qualify.

”But perhaps I am wrong, and you can explain that: do you literally believe that we should not try to prevent a terrorist attack solely based on what some people discussed among themselves because that's their right to free speech?”

That’s right. Speech is protected. Which is why stings are held to provoke actions – sometimes irresponsibly provoked – and it is the action which is illegal. That is why cops don’t arrest (or didn’t used to) people who spout anger on street corners, except of course in China, Russia, Cuba, Venezuela, and other Leftist domains.

”Should we let them talk about it until it happens and only act when they are actually pointing guns at people or installing bombs?”

Trading freedom for safety is too cowardly to preserve any freedoms at all. Cubans are very safe, if they toe the line. The actual issue is the government's limited right to surveillance, not the right of Free Speech.

”You might think there is really no point in discussing specific examples and that would be fine too”

And yet again, I have given specific examples; you have dismissed them as irrelevant and instead attacked me as cynical. Your pose as being civil is actually annoying. But continue if you wish, and if you actually admit to examples which you are now denying even exist, yet to which this comment box is attached. I won’t fill the blog with every instance of Leftist assault, it would take all day every day, and the blog would choke anyone trying to read it.

Finally, you have given no reason for anyone to think that your views are correct, that ignoring the escalating assaults on freedom is the way to go, that the universe is getting better and more wonderful. Go ahead and do that, then.

In fact, you have made no case for your side at all that I can see; all you have done is to dismiss what I say and call me cynical for outlining the truth about what is happening. Not an auspicious approach to "civility", is it?

Xellos said...

Yes, let's all be happy at how the progress is winning!

Stan said...

Perfect link, thanks Xellos!

Robert Coble said...

PART I:

@Hugo Pelland:

I hope I can convey a note of humor without offending you. It is sometimes head-scratching to read a typo and then to immediately realize it IS a typo.

"All I see are gross generalization and attack on your enemies' character, lack of descent morality and ability to use reason and logic."

My first thought was, "Is this somehow related to evolution? But then the lack of descent would seem to be the opposite of evolution."

Then the override kicked in, and I realized the word intended was most likely "decent."

My second thought was, "What would INDECENT morality (lack of DECENT morality) be? What would be a illustration of INDECENT morality?"

I immediately came full circle back to the blog post subject (NUNS FORCED TO PAY FOR CONTRACEPTION) regarding the forcing (against their personal and organizational beliefs) of people and an organization devoted to assisting the poor (surely we can agree that assisting the poor is a form of DECENT morality, especially if done voluntarily?) to violate their beliefs in the service of some greater "morality" imposed by those who merely have the power to do so. The distinguishing difference in this case is powerlessness versus power regarding a question of conscience (DECENT morality, if you will).

Would you argue that "might makes right?" is the highest form of DECENT morality?

I quote Chairman Mao: "Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun." Perhaps Chairman Mao is a prime exhibit for the highest form of DECENT morality?!? Somehow, I think not, and (I hope) you will agree.

But if "might does NOT make right," then we are left with a conundrum: to what do we appeal when there is a conflict between two (or more) differing (OPPOSITE) viewpoints on what constitutes DECENT morality? Do we simply appeal to Chairman Mao's dictum as the final solution to conflicts in morality? If so, whence DECENT morality? Whence "tolerance," which is another (perhaps the highest) of the Politically Correct "moralities" for today? Is it "moral" or "tolerant" to force conformity to a specific viewpoint which is currently fashionable, but not held to be universally true?

DECENT morality is either ultimately sourced in some objective standard or it is subjective. If there is an objective standard, then all parties to any moral disagreement can appeal to that source for resolution of conflicts. If DECENT morality is subjective, then everyone can do as they please, with no one forcing others into conformity. In short, morally, my rights stop where your rights begin, and vice versa. After all, if subjective, then DECENT morality can include exact opposites. If you support abortion and I am adamantly opposed to abortion, then how do we resolve the LEGAL issue without resorting to raw power to force conformance of one viewpoint to the other? If DECENT morality is objectively sourced, then an appeal to democracy does not work. No matter how many may be wrong, they are still wrong. If subjective, then we are back to the "tyranny of the majority" that is inherent in democracy, and the use of force to insure conformity to the viewpoint of the currently prevailing majority.

[Continued in PART II)

Robert Coble said...

PART II:

The Little Sisters of the Poor are a charitable organization, credited with many good works assisting the poor. There is no disagreement on that, nor is there any disagreement that assisting the poor is a DECENT moral thing to do. After all, the Federal government has made assisting the poor such a desirable goal that it now has approximately 45 MILLION people (14.5% of the total population) it is currently supporting in poverty. Since its inception, over $20 TRILLION dollars has been poured into the so-called ant-poverty programs. (Curious aside: that's more than enough to eliminate the Federal deficit.) Not eliminating poverty, but perpetuating and expanding it by creating conditions in which those receiving Federal assistance have many incentives to remain in poverty, and very few incentives to escape from it.

Is that DECENT morality?

The question of contraception is interesting. I have never seen a declaration of the "right" to have unfettered sex, free from all consequences such as disease and pregnancy. Contraception is readily achieved through abstinence. It is cheaply available in every store. So, is it DECENT morality that I (as a taxpayer) am forced (against my personal belief in individual responsibility for sex and its potential and actual consequences) to pay higher health insurance premiums in order to pay (from the public treasury) for someone else's contraception or someone else's abortion (to which I am adamantly opposed)? The question of WHY I am opposed to abortion is a "red herring" with regard to the question of the DECENT morality of forcing me to not only accept it as legal (and to keep my mouth shut about it in the public square) but to subsidize it through the power of the Federal government to force me to pay for it for others. We seem to be back to Chairman Mao's dictum again.

Would you please examine the U. S. Constitution and its amendments, and point out the relevant section(s) that provides UNLIMITED AND UNRESTRICTED POWER to the Federal government to do ANYTHING that the prevailing Federal rulers (Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches) decree to be DECENT morality, overruling the states and the people?

I include Amendment X (10) for relevant reference purposes:

"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people."

Hugo Pelland said...

Hello,

"We absolutely must focus on the horrible, as you put it, if we are not to be defeated by it. Ignoring it is just insane"
Agreed; I simply meant that we should not 'only' focus on what's horrible. That key word made a difference in the meaning... my bad.
"I think that satisfies this request:
”explain why you think that what I write does not mean what we see at face value?”
If it does not, then I’ll try again, but just once. "

Yes, you actually spotted a valid error.

"like Obama ignoring the [...]"
Yet another new topic; sorry I'll have to ignore.

" You have placed my statements (with back-up news links and posts virtually daily) into the category of “cynicism”"
You have the Internet, where one can find anything about everything, every single day. It is up to you to curate the content and find statistics, instead of anecdotes, when trying to make a point.

"I have filled the side bar with specific values issues regarding Atheism and Atheists"
Yes, but quantity does not equal quantity and, sometimes you don't seem to understand the actual 'values' you talk about. People tell you 'Stan, you don't understand' and you take that as an empty insult, it means nothing to you. You said:
"Contrary to what any and probably every Atheist might claim, there is no such thing as a common set of “Atheist moral principles”"
which is a complete misunderstanding. Because we agree that there is no such thing as a common set of “Atheist moral principles”. Atheists insist that Atheism is not something that provides any moral principles. Of course Atheism has an influence sometimes, we cannot deny that, but it's not, and cannot even possibly be, a supplier of moral principles.
-- Old, but still relevant, regarding beliefs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w0zSCpsOSSw
-- More recent, on morality: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAQFYgyEACI

"And I outlined in fair detail the values issues in my long reply to you. That was too long for you to read, apparently. So try the article today, I’m sure you’ll have comments on that."
It was not too long to read; I did go through the entire long comment, thrice I think. And I just did the same with today's article: It's mostly, if not only, generalizations and attacks on the ability to reason, and intentions, of people you disagree with. Sorry but I see nothing interesting to address; I'll have to skip. Here however, on this thread, you raised some specific issues.

Hugo Pelland said...

"I gave lengthy reasons and I have given examples including the daily news reports (only a few, not all of them) regarding the assaults of the Left on the nation."
Anecdotes are not evidence; it's easy to find a few, on any topic, that support one's views. And the anecdotes you show are never assaults from the Left on the nation, as you put it, because there is no such thing. You can disagree with the opinions of the Left, but claiming they are assaulting the nation is simply cheap exaggeration. People on both the Left and the Right devote their lives to try making their nation better. Respecting enemies, especially your own co-residents, is not a bad thing, and that respect includes accepting that different opinions do not equal lesser motives.

" Apparently you do not accept the government’s assault on the nuns to be worthy of your concept of “specific examples”. "
Correct, no freedom is violated. As an employer, there is no reason for them to have the exemptions described here. Nothing is forcing them, as individuals, to do anything differently. Why would a company hold a right to freedom of religion? It's the individuals that do; and they can continue to practice their religion as is. They are not asked to provide birth control themselves, not asked to take any of course, and not even asked to provide direct coverage as I understand it; there are alternative ways to achieve the same results. They mostly did not want to file the paperwork... You can convince me that I am wrong if you can show me how the Nuns' practices have been affected, just 1.

So yes, that's actually a good example to discuss. I just did; will you? I will accept your conclusion if you can prove me wrong, either by what I suggested in the last line, or some other way you may think of. Why are the nuns under assault?

Hugo Pelland said...

Next specific example:
" Nothing the (specific example) flag vendor did was libel, not even slander, not even close to yelling “fire” in a theater, nor even close to “fighting words” in the strict legal sense. Free Speech is a negative right, which can be limited only under certain, very precise conditions. That is the content and the intent of the First Amendment. So yes, it actually IS ok to say anything at anytime, if it is not one of the above specific limitations. Your “grey areas” do not qualify."

Yes, I agree with that. There is no "grey area" there. The seller (1) is allowed to sell products even if they offend someone's sensibilities; this is never a good reason to prevent someone from selling something. Some examples are more obvious than others; books, flags, pieces of clothing, costumes, etc... which are used to express opinions, create stories or simply for collecting, are a direct form of speech, protected by the First Amendment here in the US, and just generally freedom of speech, by definition.

(1) Now flag vendor? I thought it was cheap Nazi symbols replica, but it does not matter, yet (2).

So the question now is whether or not that (specific example) seller story showed yet another case of assaults on the nation. Actually, what's interesting here is that I am not sure how you call it as you did not even say what was wrong in that last comment. You would think that when mentioning the example, you would use at least a few words to describe what was wrong with the (specific example) seller story. I need to go back to previous posts:

"There is SJW morality and that only, forced upon this story, which is a story of SJW hysterical ideological reaction to discomfort which MUST NOT BE ALLOWED. There is no thought of "I disagree, but will fight to the death for your right to disagree", a la Voltaire (dead white man in deep dark history). These same people would likely walk around a crowd of anti-capitalists burning the American flag, give them a thumbs up, and keep shopping.
[...]
Vomiting due to encountering an ideological difference, does make one mentally unstable, which mental instability is related to ideology. Demanding enforcement of personal moral proclivities by civil authorities is totalitarian."


That's where I think you exaggerate and create false drama, exactly like the shopper did actually. The shopper overreacted, but so did you by writing these claims regarding the people involved in the non-drama that ensued. Thankfully your comments have no impact so it's just interesting talking points; no harm done of course, unlike what 'could' have happened. Taking the cases 1 by 1, as you did:

"1. The morality of the shopper was presumed to be Law; the shopper demanded enforcement of the shopper's morality, calling not just the chief of police, but the mayor as well."
I don't think anyone presumed the shopper's morality to be Law. The problem is more that the shopper's reaction should have been promptly dismissed, but is it really that easy when someone call 911 and pretend there is something intense going on? It's only compassionate, but wrong I repeat, to attend to someone's needs.

And that's where I need to insert note (2) from above: it does matter, a lot, whether it was just some flags being sold or some cheap Nazi symbols replica; it mattered to the seller a lot because they have strong emotional ties to the message behind the symbol. For them, it represents a regime that literally killed millions of people and came very close to do so to their own grand-parent apparently. Can we really blame that person to be sensitive about the topic? No, but it still does not excuse their extreme behavior... it only explains 'why' they reacted like that. It's not completely random and very few items would cause such a stir.

Hugo Pelland said...

"2. Police Chief says that the merchandise "could be 'precluded'", indicating that the merchandise is actually evil in his eyes, even if not illegal."

He is wrong, and was proven wrong. Who said he could not understand why? Nothing from the story warrants concluding that he is an anti-American bully who would try to shut down any selling table he disapproves of.

Moreover, he said "the owner could preclude this merchandise", which is slightly different from your sentence under #2 here; that small difference makes it sound as if the Police could preclude the merchandise, when in reality they were implying that the seller could (should?) do it themselves if they wished to not offend others. The seller could then just tell them to go F*** themselves, and that would be his right...

" 3. NAACP says it's on private property so nothing can be done. Like everyone else, doesn't point out Free Speech. Just can't get at it, legally."

Here you contradicted yourself regarding Free Speech being mentioned or not; the NAACP did mention Free Speech, you even included that bit in your extract. Poor analysis on your part I am afraid... However, I agree with you regardless, there was no reason to say 'it's difficult' because it's not: it's totally legal and there is nothing to do. The only thing that's difficult is not being insensitive to the shopper's reaction, because of what was being sold (note 2...), but again, wrong way to approach it.

"4. The Mayor wanted to see if it was "actionable" - it wasn't."

The problem I see with the mayor is that he needed to check, which is quite stupid as it's obviously not actionable. Again, nothing shows that he is some crazy totalitarian mayor trying to shut down sale of specific items he does not like.

" 5. Anti-Defamation League claims it amounts to "hate symbols", because: cheap replicas.
6. Joshua Sayless says the right to sell this is "unfortunate" and that they should not, a moral statement. Also says that this Hate is a "South" characteristic (bigot, who hates)."


Same person for 5 and 6; with the worst comments in my opinion. The only part that makes sense is those cheap replicas are not collectibles, so it removes that reason from why someone might buy the items. But there are still tons of innocent reasons to buy these other than to display hate. Plus the comment on the "South" is just useless rhetoric.

But even after all these observations, the article does not tell us much about how Sayles express his ideas usually, or whether or not he realized that these were completely within Free Speech and not even necessarily to be used for hate display. He's right that it 'could' be for that but until he has evidence, judgment is too quick.

Finally, in the end, what we need to ask ourselves is this: what was the consequences of all of this non-drama? Nothing. Nothing at all. The people who made the comments were wrong, and I completely agree, but then if nothing happened, if the law was respected and followed, why label these people as totalitarian with hysterical ideological reaction who want to make any discomfort a cause for censorship? The 'discomfort' here was pretty unique, though exaggerated, and nothing warrants concluding that all these people, even Joshua Sayless, would not understand that selling stuff is not the same as encouraging hate. It's not remotely close to yelling 'FIRE' for no reason, as you pointed out. And I think that the average person can understand that. But when reading an article, we cannot talk to them directly, so it's wrong to infer any intentions.

Hugo Pelland said...

@ Robert
Ya, that was a funny typo :-)
Regarding what's 'decent' morality, or not, I am afraid I don't have much to say; I was pointing out that Stan insists that the Left, the SJW, the Atheists, etc... are people without 'decent' morality. He labels them, and I am including the lot, as such.
I personally think there is such a thing as objective moral judgement, relative to situations.

@Stan
Looks like only the first part of my last long comment showed up, but almost instantly, so I don't know if there is a delay with the 2-3 parts that are missing. Let me know if something went wrong and I can repost as I kept a copy on my side.

Cheers

Stan said...



Hugo P said,
"We absolutely must focus on the horrible, as you put it, if we are not to be defeated by it. Ignoring it is just insane"
Agreed; I simply meant that we should not 'only' focus on what's horrible. That key word made a difference in the meaning... my bad."


I accept the apology, but I don't accept the contention that you didn't really mean it when you wrote it, based on the context and the discontinuity that the negation places on that paragraph.

"like Obama ignoring the [...]"
Yet another new topic; sorry I'll have to ignore.”


It’s an analogy, not a new subject. But I see where this is headed.

" You have placed my statements (with back-up news links and posts virtually daily) into the category of “cynicism”"
You have the Internet, where one can find anything about everything, every single day. It is up to you to curate the content and find statistics, instead of anecdotes, when trying to make a point.


This statement, as I see the cumulative essence of your comments here, is the naked essence of Hugo. You won’t accept general statements and you demand specifics (which have been given in abundance); then you turn around and spit on the specifics as “anecdotes”.

You are unable (actually you don’t care to try) to defend the positions under attack here, so you slip slide around, first decrying “generalities”, then into a pose of mindless joy, now into demand for statistics which are the generalities you have previously despised. Your assertions make it obvious that you don’t want anything, actually, other than mere disruption.

You are here merely to make demands and never anything else. When one demand doesn’t work, then you change to still another demand even when it contradicts the first demand. You are wasting my time, and apparently are merely trolling, asserting contradiction and contradictions at every turn. There is no conversation to be had with such a being.

Still I will comment on your analysis of Atheist morals. Here you state unequivocally that I do not understand when I say that Atheism and Atheists do not have a common set of morals and that whatever morals they claim to have are homegrown. Then you say that you agree (!) that Atheism provides no morals:

”Atheists insist that Atheism is not something that provides any moral principles.”

This is yet another contradiction in your chain of internal contrapositions.

But that is not the complete story, the settled case, because many Atheists do exactly claim to have superior morals, morals which they think up by themselves, but which they advocate for everyone else. For example, consequentialism; utilitarianism; Nicomachean Ethics; Deontology (aka Virtue Ethics); Feminist Ethics; Relativism; nihilism/anarchy. This does not even mention the all New Lefist Inverted Meanings Ethics with which western culture is now afflicted. I have never said anything different from this, and I stand by what I have said. You have done nothing to prove otherwise.

It is one thing to say “You don’t understand.” It is another thing to say, “you don’t understand BECAUSE: [indisputable factoid]”. The first is merely an insult, ridicule in the vacuum of empty reasoning. That’s generally all that Atheists have.

Because of the constant inversions and the lack of anything but self-refuting demands, and because there is no value in continuing with this process, and keeping this short for you:

I am done with you.

Hugo Pelland said...

Hello,

"You won’t accept general statements and you demand specifics (which have been given in abundance); then you turn around and spit on the specifics as “anecdotes”. "

General statements on your opponents' character are useless, yes, and that's what I was talking about. And you keep making them, you insist that your opponents are all delusional crackpots that want to destroy the country. This is not productive.

You claim that you would fight Voltaire-style for the right of others to have diverging opinions, but if they show such opinions, you label them as SJW (your super harsh definition of SJW) and essentially imply that their place is in a mental hospital. You ignored the bits on 'respecting opponents' above.

Also yes, list of anecdotes are not a good way to support your view that everything is getting worse. Or just in general for that matter; you cannot just say that 'X' happened 10 times and conclude that 'zomg, X happens all the time!', this is just basic logic.

And, again regarding that 1 sentence above: most, if not all, of the anecdotes you present are not crazy people trying to destroy the country, and that's what I tried to address, 1 case at a time (as we cannot generalize) but for some reason you decided to reply to the 1st part of my long comment... it sucks because I almost removed it, precisely for that reason! I thought to myself, I am afraid Stan will get stuck on these few sentences, at the beginning; I hope I am wrong. And that is exactly what happened; unfortunately I was right... It's as if I did not discuss the 2 issues: the Nuns and the Nazi symbols seller.

"You are wasting my time, and apparently are merely trolling, asserting contradiction and contradictions at every turn. There is no conversation to be had with such a being."
You invite people to discuss only so that you can write long rants about their character, based on your own interpretation of who they are, or indirectly by attacking 'Atheism' ( as you see it), when you know I am an Atheist. You show no respect but demand respect. You went from 'please join the conversation Hugo; very interesting question Hugo' to ' There is no conversation to be had with such a being' within a few days.

Since you completely ignored the 2 issues I wanted to discuss, you are thus the one who is trolling me! I replied to your examples and I thought you might even be able to convince me that the Nuns are being oppressed, if you show how their practices had to change. Maybe I missed some details, I would have liked to know if that's the case... but no, you just ignored that because you got offended by the first few lines of text, or a tired of my civility, or whatever raison du jour you have.

Finally, the most important point you ignored is that your views that the world is getting worse correlates with 1 thing, and 1 thing alone: THE INTERNET. You even said it yourself, things seem to have been worst in the last 10 years. Come on Stan, what really changed in the last 10 years? Social media. The Web 2.0. The availability to anyone and everyone to become their own commentator. That's why everything seems worse to you; because you have access to more cases, to more blogs, on both sides. The crazies look crazier to you because you could not even imagine they existed before. The people on your side seem to bring up more examples because you could not communicate with them before. In reality, worldwide especially: http://www.vox.com/2014/11/24/7272929/charts-thankful
but of course, if you only care about gay people getting married... then childhood mortality, wars, violent crimes, education, etc... must be ignored, because who cares about that, right?

Sincere 'thank you' nonetheless; I know you tried. Take care!

Stan said...

Hugo,
I posted a status comment, as I usually do when taking leave of an intractable exchange, but I did so before reading your latest comments, which finally seem to take a position other than simple denialism and dissembly. So I deleted it, and I will try again. The problem is how to keep this short - one of your requirements - and to provide specifics which are not anecdotes - another of your requirements. I don't think that is possible, given that anecdotes are specifics, a position you reject.

So here we go. You say,
”General statements on your opponents' character are useless, yes, and that's what I was talking about. And you keep making them, you insist that your opponents are all delusional crackpots that want to destroy the country. This is not productive.”

Your desire to protect them is obvious here. I make statements regarding the behaviors of those people whose behaviors are designed to deprive others of their constitutional rights. Your terminology “delusional crackpots” is your terminology only; I did not say that. I have provided documentation on the Frankfort School of Intellectuals and how their programs are being found in many current “anecdotes” including governmental “anecdotes” which are placed upon previously protected behaviors, but are now punished severely, including financial destruction. You have responded that such talk is of “delusional crackpots” and is not productive.

How, exactly is that a conversation?

”You claim that you would fight Voltaire-style for the right of others to have diverging opinions, but if they show such opinions, you label them as SJW (your super harsh definition of SJW) and essentially imply that their place is in a mental hospital. You ignored the bits on 'respecting opponents' above.”

You have shown no reason to think otherwise, other than the above moralization. For example, “super harsh” is nothing but a moral judgment without any reasoning or evidence provided. And from an Atheist perspective, it is a personal opinion-type of moral judgment, to which you have agreed is the only type available to Atheists. So your statement has no meat, no actual content. It is your opinion, so back it up with some sort of facts.

”Also yes, list of anecdotes are not a good way to support your view that everything is getting worse. Or just in general for that matter; you cannot just say that 'X' happened 10 times and conclude that 'zomg, X happens all the time!', this is just basic logic.”

What is the official limit to be placed on the number of individual instances which must occur before one should take notice? It is not basic logic, there is no logic theorem which makes that claim. If you wish to assert statistics or probability theory, go ahead. And we could discuss the usage of Bayesian calculations to prove the abiogenesis of First Life from minerals (an Atheist necessity). Or not, as you wish.

Stan said...

”And, again regarding that 1 sentence above: most, if not all, of the anecdotes you present are not crazy people trying to destroy the country, and that's what I tried to address, 1 case at a time (as we cannot generalize) but for some reason you decided to reply to the 1st part of my long comment... it sucks because I almost removed it, precisely for that reason!”

I have to disagree with your characterization. Totalitarian behaviors are, in fact, irrational. They are related to narcissism (Popper; The Open Society and It’s Enemies, Part 2, Hegel and Marx; pg 252, he calls it “pseudo-rationalism”). It involves a delusion of the “immodest belief in one’s superior intellectual gifts, the claim to be initiated, to know with certainty, and with authority… According to Plato… this sort of ‘reason is shared only by the gods, and by very few men’ . This authoritarian intellectualism, this belief in the infallible instrument of discovery, or an infallible method… this pseudo-rationalism is often called ‘rationalism’, but it is diametrically opposed to what we call by this name”.

We can discuss this in greater detail, as you wish. For now, I stand by my opinion that totalitarian behaviors are not “rational”, thus they are irrational.

”You invite people to discuss only so that you can write long rants about their character, based on your own interpretation of who they are, or indirectly by attacking 'Atheism' ( as you see it), when you know I am an Atheist. You show no respect but demand respect.

First if you want false and automatic respect, you are in the wrong digital space. I will continue to say what I find to be true, and if that is what you find disrespectful, well, that’s too bad. When you disagree, it is up to you to provide more than mere denials of validity, and accusations of cynicism and ageism. Respect is now placed under the same inverted definition as is “tolerance”. Respect is not demanded , it is earned. Your charges of ignorance and ageism, for example, are rational defects which fall outside of logical rebuttal. That is what I attack; it’s not a demand for respect – I have never received respect from any Atheist, and that’s what I expect by experience. When an Atheist earns respect, he will get it. That requires valid use of logic and/or empirical, objective knowledge.

”Since you completely ignored the 2 issues I wanted to discuss, you are thus the one who is trolling me!”

This is an absurd claim. However, if the next comment is not too long (as this one likely is), I will discuss your claims on those two issues (or do you want just one for brevity?)

”Finally, the most important point you ignored is that your views that the world is getting worse correlates with 1 thing, and 1 thing alone: THE INTERNET.”

Roe v Wade was decades before the common usage of the internet, happening in 1973. The Leftist kill culture was the first step into the barbarization of our culture. Civil Rights in 1964 (Republican/conservative btw) did not guarantee what was thought to be a natural right, the Right To Life for all humans. That was inverted and usurped by the woman’s right to kill her progeny. It’s been constantly downhill ever since. You will likely object to the terminology I use here; don’t bother unless you can prove categorically that it is false. Go for it as you will.

”if you only care about gay people getting married... then childhood mortality, wars, violent crimes, education, etc... must be ignored, because who cares about that, right?”

This comment is without merit. The childhood mortality, in the womb especially, is a constant topic here. The Islamic wars on humanity, same. Violent crimes, statistics, perpetrators and victims, same. Education, maleducation, home-schooling, same. Your accusation is demonstrably false and ill advised.

Hugo Pelland said...

Hi, thank you for the recent comments, and you did not need to take down your 'status comment' but I appreciate the intention.

There is only 1 thing that I will get to clarify tonight. First, it does sound to me like your opponents are 'crackpots' and that you label them with 'super harsh' solely base on the definitions I quoted before. It's also what I mean by 'lack of respect':

"* A social justice warrior is defined by the following characteristics:

1. Iconoclastic regarding western culture.

2. Considers his opinion to be morally correct, therefore dissent is immoral. This produces the designation of the Oppressor Class, and the moral intolerance of dissent, which characterizes their designated Oppressor Class.

3. Utopian, in the sense that he "knows" that his own plan for society is the only, singularly correct plan.

4. Dogmatic. Moral superiority leads to self-delusion of being a "savior", i.e. a Messiah. This produces the designation of Victimhood Classes.

5. Runs in packs of like-thinking moral, utopian iconoclasts, who are also totalitarian to the point of Stalinist in their assault on the Oppressor Class."


It's a good thing that these characteristics are mostly regarding behaviors; and in general, you do show here and there some good examples of individuals who fit that profile. I just thought you generalize too much when you start to label people as SJW left and right, knowing that SJW means these 5 things, and more. But maybe it sounds worse than what you actually think of most of these people you label SJW; only a minority can be that bad...

And that will be it for me, for a while at least. Sorry to cut short after trying to discuss over a few days but I have personal reasons... I will gladly read what you think of the 2 issues though, as you just said you have some comments on that. Since I will not reply, the length does not matter at all, I will read it all for sure :)

If you are curious, it's something my wife told me that actually makes me stop, after I described some of what we discussed. It was not particularly nice, more or less for both of us, so I will avoid posting it not the stir the pot; but she had a very very good point. And the consequence of that point if that I should stop writing right away.

Thanks a lot for your time, and take care!

Stan said...

OK. I guess in light of that, that there is no real need for me to address those issues, either.

One of the things that happens here is that people fail to read the name of the blog. The purpose here is for Atheism and its handmaidens to be analyzed. The criteria for that analysis are Aristotelian principles of hpothetico-deductive logic, and the principles of Enlightenment-derived empirical, experimental generation of contingent objective knowledge of material existence. Thus it is not the purpose of this blog to proselytize or convict anyone to any conclusions which are outside logical boundaries of Aristotelian deductive principles, nor outside the contingent factiods which can be generated regarding material entities by the disciplined process of empirical, experimental science.

These limits are placed precisely because they are claimed by Atheists, who tend to claim sole possession of them. Thus their positions are analyzed using their own criteria. This does not mean that I subscribe to these criteria as being the sole rational criteria; it means that the analysis uses them.

This requires firm definitions for the properties of existence, First Principles, cognition and knowledge, as well as what can and cannot be known as objective knowledge, however contingent, and what truth claims have any degree of validity.

The properties of Atheist thought have been arrived at here by years of my own Atheism, decades of contact with Atheists and seculars, honed by the contact with Atheists through this blog and email contact, as well as over a decade of intense autodidactic study of Atheist philosophers and their critics, historical and current.

For decades, we Atheists and seculars were content to just reject theism quietly, and, also quietly, assign ourselves the property of intellectual elitism and presumed personal superiority. No attempt at destruction of cultural standards as attempted or seen as necessary.

No longer is that the case. Now Atheist organizations have undertaken to claim possession of all governments, from the US Federal (including military) down to the one-room school house. They do that by threatening destructive lawsuits, primarily against smaller prey who cannot afford it, like small school districts, small cities, small businesses, etc. In recent years the US Federal government has assisted in that pursuit, being controlled by Leftists, in virtually all agencies, notably the education, justice, IRS and DHS departments, but also EPA, and lesser departments as well. These are outside of democratic control; they are enforcement arms of the federal government.

Stan said...

The SJW movement is a very recent offshoot of that agglomerate of Atheist organizations cum government and education systems, and is growing exponentially, having the advantage of preying on children who have been indoctrinated into Leftist principles (inverted definitions again) in government schools. These young people are of the new lost generation, which enters college too ignorant to pass the basics of literacy, and require remedial education before they are inevitably exposed to more Leftist indoctrination. Many leave college as Leftist-utopian proto-activists and are virtually unemployable due to their exaggerated self-esteem and lack of useful skills. This is documented by many observers other than here.

I have recorded much of this on this blog. And it is intended as a cumulative analysis of the effect that basic rejectionist Atheism has in ultimately generating destructive cultural iconoclasm in a self-designated elite class.

I have also given other sources who have done similar analyses, in publications and books.

Because this site is intended as an analytical site (read the title) it does not serve well as a community conversation site. The expectation that Atheist positions would not be subjected to analysis via Aristotelian principles and/or empirical principles regarding any truth claims made here or elsewhere would be misguided.

Until incontrovertible objective knowledge is provided which definitively contradicts the analysis made here, and by other observers as well, I will stand firmly by these inductive observations and the deductions drawn from them.

I also stand by the tone used here, which is not intended to be particularly conversational, but which is intended to produce analysis of the Atheist and Leftist activities and motivations which afflict our culture.

If anyone finds me using irrational rhetoric (such as ridicule, which flaw I have sometimes descended to), they are welcome to point it out, I will change it. But charges without evidence will be rejected until evidence of violation of specific principles of logic or empiricism are presented.

Hugo, I don't know if you'll read this. If you do, perhaps it will clarify the environment here.

Hugo Pelland said...

Yep got it, and I would like to read your take on the 2 issues, well about what I wrote on them, if you do have time. I'll just not comment further on it. Thanks!

Stan said...

Hugo,
I will post my reply to your two issues as an article rather than a comment - it's just too long for a comment box.