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Support Sntjohnny/Athanatos Ministries with your NON-tax-exempt Donation

Every June, we run a donor drive.  In getting this year’s ready, I noted that my typical proviso that ACM is not tax-exempt had more significance than in previous years.

Over the last few weeks we have been regaled with case after case of conservative, Christian, anti-Obama, anti-Obama agenda organizations that have been targeted by the IRS.  Quite coincidentally, this began before the 2012 election.  This suppression has been public knowledge for several years, but the mainstream media, quite coincidentally, didn’t think it worth reporting on.  Nonetheless, despite the fact that it was all completely unintentional, there probably was an impact on the 2012 presidential election.

Some would say, “Good!”  I say, “Perhaps it is not wise for Christians to accept tax advantages in exchange for being silent on extremely important issues.”  At least, that has been my approach since I founded Athanatos Christian Ministries in 2008.  I have since had a fair bit to say about the impact of taxes on personal and religious freedom, and if you will forgive me for saying so, I’m feeling a bit vindicated right about now.

Here is a 2009 article I wrote urging Christians to consider abandoning their tax exempt status, and in this article, I challenge Christians to work out a ‘theology of taxation.’  For more on the topic, use the blog’s search feature, or here are all my posts tagged with ‘taxation.’  And don’t get me started on how right I was in regards to the US government’s obscene overreach into our electronic lives.

So, ACM is poised for some big changes.   There is a good possibility that it will be moving to a physical location, as opposed to primarily a virtual location.  (We previously had an office;  this is more than that.) We’ll have some chances to expand our media and arts ministry to movies and film.  We will continued to speak unshackled, unfettered, unmuzzled, on so-called ‘political’ issues such as abortion on demand.

If you want ACM to continue to grow and thrive, I would encourage you to support ACM with your financial resources.  Don’t wait, thinking that someone else is supporting it.  In order for ACM to go to the next stage, it needs some of its many supporters to translate their support into cash.  As ACM more and more becomes something that actually supports the executive director’s family (ie, me), financial support takes on a more urgent role, and if the base of support is not wide enough to support this important task, then hard but necessary economic decisions would need to be made.

But know this:  whatever ACM does, you can be sure that it will do it with abandon, on principle, with clear-headed thinking, and unmuzzled.

Here is the link to ACM’s June donor drive page with a summary of our upcoming endeavors, if you just want to skip to the donation part, you can click here.


A Theology of Taxation? Horvath column published at Worldnetdaily.com

This is a column of mine that Worldnetdaily.com published several years back.  In light of recent events concerning the IRS targeting of tea party and conservative groups (and anyone else opposed to Obama’s policies), it seemed appropriate to highlight it again.

I am not a theologian or an economist and have never received formal instruction on the morality of taxation. That, though, is a bit of the point: Little effort is made to educate young Christians about matters of importance or otherwise equip them for the actual challenges they face when they come of age. It might seem odd to propose the development of a theology of taxation. Isn’t a theology on civil government enough?

No, it isn’t, especially when we the people (theoretically) constitute the government. Unfortunately, “taxation” is relegated off as mere “politics,” and in many minds most political issues are considered “spiritually neutral.” The feeling is that a Christian can in good conscience embrace any number of views and be within the revealed Word of God.

 Certainly, in ultimate terms Christians understand that the highest concern is the eternal fate of every human soul on the planet. Thus, temporal issues are of limited importance. True, but not of no importance. We must remind ourselves that God created the material world and our physical bodies and called it “good.” Though we will be resurrected with a “spiritual body” (1 Corinthians 15:42-44), it is still a body. Even Jesus in his resurrected body retained the physical marks of his crucifixion.

Taxation is a subset of a larger issue. As Christians, we know that we cannot be indifferent to the welfare of our fellow man. We know that we should attempt to end or curtail atrocities such as abortion on demand and the Holocaust. We know that we should not look the other way when we see whole nations terrorized by tyrants and tyrannical ideologies. We know that, insofar as it is within our power, we should increase freedom and oppose slavery whenever we can. Slavery has many forms but is marked essentially by the forceful repression of individual human will. Taxation, all taxation, is in some respect and to some degree just such a repression.

Every increase in taxation represents a proportional decrease in human freedom.

How can that be? The easiest way to see it is to look at one of the most extreme examples ever to be manifested in human history: communism. Indisputably, wherever communism went, tyranny and enslavement – and worse – went with it. The grand experiment in mass redistribution of wealth had horrific consequences. However, it may be surprising and unexpected that religious persecution, torment and torture accompanied communism on its long march.

Why is that the case? Simply put, those who tax feel that they have the right, justification and authority to do so. When people believe that there is no higher authority than man himself, then they do not believe they answer to anyone, except of course their fellow man, and these they might be able to control – for the “common good” of course. This describes the communists to a T.

Religion, and Christianity in particular, stands in the way of that attitude, and the communists understood that acutely. The only ones who don’t seem to understand it are Christians.

Can it really be said, though, that all taxation represents a reduction in freedom? The answer to this must be yes, even if we recognize that the effect on freedom might be slight in some cases. To illustrate, imagine a small income tax of a dollar. It might be an easy matter to get by without that dollar, but it is still one more dollar that you cannot spend according to your own priorities. Consider what the impact is if instead the tax is 25 percent of your income!

We also have to ask about those who are doing the taxing. They obviously believe they have the right to take your resources from you. They must believe that they can obtain some good that people would not have subsidized if left to their own devices. They must believe that they know how much they can fairly extract from you. They must believe that they have the right, if you protest, to incarcerate you and take your possessions by force if need be. In sum, they are almost indistinguishable from tyrants.

Christians should not support tyrants or adopt their methods and so become tyrants ourselves. If there is a cause we wish to support, we ought to do so from our own resources out of the free expression of our own hearts (2 Corinthians 8).

Where does theology come into the picture? After all, Jesus is on the record saying, “Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.” Clearly, we must pay our taxes. Note, however, that in this passage Jesus was speaking to the people being taxed. What would He have said if he were speaking to the ones doing the taxing? What would He have said to Caesar? In a country such as ours, which is theoretically ruled at the consent of the governed, are we not in some way Caesar?

In light of the foregoing, Christians should carefully test their attitudes about taxation (and governing) against the Scriptures, not merely as those who are taxed and governed but as those who tax and govern.

Remember what Samuel told the Israelites when they demanded a king: “This is what [he] will do: He will take your sons and make them serve with his chariots and horses … he will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive groves and give them to his attendances. He will take a tenth of your grain and of your vintage. … He will take a tenth of your flocks and you yourselves will become his slaves” (1 Samuel 8).

Note: Samuel does not think any of these things are good things. In America there is no king – so why do we still see all the things that Samuel warned the Israelites about?

True Christian theologians and economists should sit down and work out a “theology of taxation” and present it before the church. Then we should teach our children that what happens in the world matters and has eternal reverberations (e.g., 1 Timothy 5:24-25). If we don’t teach our children, their secularist humanistic professors will.


When the Children are in Charge All Hell Breaks Loose

While this has been going on for years, the recent spate of over-the-top reactions to ‘guns’ in the schools is beginning to illustrate the consequences of ‘political correctness’ that people have also been warning about for years.  In a word, we are seeing the emergence of a soft tyranny, a stripping away of liberties, a perverted loss of any sense of proportion and common sense, and a humorous and absurd–but dangerous–disappearance of courage among grown adults.

In short, many areas of our country are presently run by children:  or people with infantile minds, at least.

Check out these stories:

Cowboy-style cap gun gets 5-year-old suspended from school in Calvert County

A kindergartner who brought a cowboy-style cap gun onto his Calvert County school bus was suspended for 10 days after showing a friend the orange-tipped toy, which he had tucked inside his backpack on his way to school, according to his family and a lawyer.

The child was questioned for more than two hours before his mother was called, she said, adding that he uncharacteristically wet his pants during the episode.

The mother says that she “had no problem that he had a consequence to his behavior” but questioned the severity.  His ‘behavior’?  It is a five year old boy.  He did nothing wrong.  And where is the father in this?  If my child was driven to ‘uncharacteristically wet his pants’ there would have been hell to pay, I kid you not.

toy-gun-of-doomA 6-year-old boy in Massachusetts was accused of traumatizing his classmates after bringing a Lego-sized gun onto his school bus. The plastic toy was just slightly larger than a quarter.

 The boy was given after-school detention and told to write an apology letter to the bus driver after a fellow student supposedly shouted to the driver about the gun, causing the other students to panic.

You see there the size of the ‘gun’ that caused the other students to panic.

So, we have become a society where the mere presence of a tiny piece of plastic the size of a quarter can drive children into a panic;  I suppose some of them wet their pants, too.  In this case, after originally disciplining the boy, they decided that maybe it was not warranted (because the kids did not panic, because kids are not idiots).  The instinct was to punish.

Maryland boy suspended for gun-shaped pastry is now lifetime NRA member

An 8-year-old Maryland boy who was suspended from school for nibbling a pastry snack into the shape of a gun has been given a junior membership in the National Rifle Association. […]

“I was embarrassed that my county would do that to him,” said Nicholaus Kipke, leader of the Republican minority in the lower house of the Maryland legislature. He presented the gift to the second-grader Wednesday night.

The ‘pastry’ was a pop-tart.  I believe it less likely that a pop-tart would be seen as a threat than a tiny piece of plastic.  But then, in these cases, as in nearly all such cases, no one thinks there is actually a threat.  And this is the important part.  This is the part you have to pay attention to.

These teachers, administrators, bus drivers, etc, etc, etc, do not typically perceive a threat.  Thus the ‘zero tolerance’ concept cannot be truthfully understood as having anything to do with making anyone safer.  Obviously, if a child did want to hurt someone, he is not going to be dissuaded, just as law-breakers don’t tend to be dissuaded by laws:  by definition.  The bringing of an actual weapon by a child with typical childlike innocence is obviously a very serious matter and ought to be dealt with urgently, but even that is not encompassed by the ‘zero tolerance’ philosophy, as the three stories above illustrate.

So what does the ‘zero tolerance’ philosophy really speak to?  Quite clearly, the message being delivered to children is that violence is absolutely and always wrong, immoral, and unjust.   “Don’t you know that guns are bad?”  Says the people who want other men with guns to come save them when bad men are upon them.

On first appearances, condemning violence makes a world of sense.  And then we look at the world.  It becomes evident in short order that sometimes violence is an absolute necessity, required in order to keep our freedoms and liberties and evil men at bay.  The infantile mind stops at ‘violence is baaaaaaaaad.’  The mature mind, having seen the real world and attempted to think through life’s many complications, understands that a much more nuanced approach is needed.  The adult mind knows that the important life lesson is not ‘violence is bad!’ but rather ‘Here are the times when violence is justified;  here are the times it is not justified.’

We should be teaching young people the principles appropriate to solving complex real world difficulties, including when the proper response is to use violence.  But of course, for this, you actually need to believe there are principles, and that there is a right and a wrong.  Our ‘adults’ are too afraid to even say that there are principles and ‘right and wrong’ lest they get sued.  The reason why they throw themselves so heavily towards the ‘violence is always bad’ notion is because they perceive it is the only non-disputable area of morality left in society.  They figure that everyone thinks that school shootings are so bad that no one could possibly object to policies ostensibly oriented towards stopping them, so they throw themselves into the project with gusto.

In the minds of these infants, handing out suspensions and detentions is a positive contribution towards the problem of school violence;  they are grappling with the issue head on, you see.

What happens when a society is so castrated that it has no concept on when it is appropriate to use violence?  We see it every day.  We see it in the gun control debate, where people actually believe that criminals are going to go along with gun restrictions.  We see it in our inability to stand up to the wave of illegal immigrants–many of whom inflict violence on our citizens–because we think that if they like us (as they surely must, if they are coming to our country) all problems will go away.  We see it in our inability to recognize in Islam an existential threat;  Islamic doctrine calls for the subjugation of the world and the death of infidels… but they can’t really believe that, right? If only we could get them to like us!  If only we’d stop ‘creating terrorists’!

An inability to process when it is appropriate to use violence is only one more illustration of a society being tossed about on the waves, anchored to nothing, no moorings in sight.  Other examples include our inability to tell teenagers “It is wrong for you to have sex.  Don’t do it.”  Unwilling to take the moral position that this behavior is wrong and unacceptable, we come along with ‘solutions’ to compensate for the harm they inflict on themselves because the adults refused to be adults, like NYC telling girls where to find abortion clinics or LA giving students ‘tools’ for communicating their STD status.  Oh yea, that’s real mature.  Real benevolent of ya.

But condemning the behavior that leads to the consideration of the abortion (‘punished by a baby‘) and having to deal with incurable sexually transmitted diseases?  Can’t do that.  Nope, that would be intolerant.  But we do stand ready to try to fix your life, now that its all busted up because of our own insipid cowardice!

And on and on it goes.

I addressed this infantile hypocrisy three years ago in this post, “Violence is never the answer… except when it is.”  It has a link to another over-reaction by school administrators which speaks to my point that diminishing actual threats is not the real target of the ‘zero policy’ philosophy, so in parting, I’ll leave you with that to chew on.  In the meantime, is it too much to ask… could you please grow up?  And quick, please.  You’re going to get us all killed.

Rhode Island elementary school draws fire after banning patriotic hat

Elementary school officials at Tiogue Elementary School in Coventry, Rhode Island have drawn criticism after confiscating a patriotic baseball cap created by David Morales, an 8-year old boy.

The second-grader’s cap, made for a school project honoring the military, featured a small American flag and several plastic GI Joe’s. Morales’ teachers, though, claimed that the hat promoted the use of weapons in school zones.

And does anyone else notice that these are all boys?  Methinks there is something to that angle, too.  But that is another post.


The real reason there is an ammunition shortage in America?

Anyone paying attention at all knows that there has been a huge run on guns and ammo in America thanks to the efforts of the number one gun salesman in America–Barack Obama.   You would be mistaken if you thought that this ‘run’ was inspired only out of concern for stricter gun laws.  Many people have also been very concerned about the Obama administration’s inexplicable purchase of billions of rounds of ammunition… 1.5 billion last year, and evidently another 1.5 billion in the next year or so… and this is what we know about.

To give you some perspective on how odd and unnerving this is, consider that this amount could get our military through a 24 year long Iraq war!  Others think it a very reasonable amount and that it is necessary for all the new Homeland Security agents now roaming the country.   Some are not exactly comforted to know that we are presently witnessing the establishment of a national, Federal, police agency.  Still others remember what Obama said about needing to create a ‘civilian national security force’ and are not persuaded by the poo-pooing of a pseudo-non-partisan organization that there is no cause for alarm.

There are many ‘conspiracy theories’ out there, but of course this is only natural, since few people feel like they can actually believe government explanations any more, which means that nobody has any definitive answer beyond “The government said so, and they wouldn’t lie to us.”

Conspiracies theories regarding the ammunition are especially abundant, as I discovered when I recently tried to purchase some 22 rounds for plinking.  Did you know that the country is virtually out of this normally affordable and plentiful small caliber bullet?  Seems darn near the case;  the same box I bought for $15 two years ago I found online for $50.  The reason why the absence of this round is confusing is because the round is so small that it is not used by law enforcement.  Some speculate that the government is buying it up just to destroy it, preventing everyone else from having it.   Some think it is just market pressures (ie, all the brass is going to fulfill the aforementioned massive ammo purchases, instead of making 22 rounds).

We’ll never know, of course, because they lie.

Now, there are still others who believe that the government is getting ready to put down a massive revolution by Tea Party patriots.  I don’t think this is the case, because I think everyone knows that the unlike the radical left, the Tea Party is law-abiding and long-suffering.   By ‘everyone’ I include Obama.  And I think Obama and his ilk also know that there is a point he better not go past in pursuit of his agenda, for the same reasons why Japan chose not to consider invading the United States during World War 2:  the American people are heavily armed and not to be trifled with.

I therefore would like to throw my own conspiracy into the mix:

Obama is doing whatever he can to jack up the prices of guns and ammo so as to inflict a targeted tax on a group of people he disregards as ‘bitter clingers.’  And it has nothing to do with raising revenue, and everything to do with hurting the targeted group.  Let me explain.

Did you know that Obama has put a tax on people using tanning salons?  Ostensibly, this is to help finance the 1 trillion dollar Obamacare boondoggle.  However, it is only expected to generate a little over 2 billion over the next ten years.  “Why are they targeting me?” cries out a tanning bed patron.  Why, indeed.  Considering that the annual budget deficit is 2,000,000,000,000– or, 20,000,000,000,000 if allowed to persist 10 years, why bother with a measly 2,000,000,000?  Well, who uses tanning beds?  Who doesn’t use tanning beds?

Black people don’t.  White people do.

A tax on tanning bed use thus specifically targets a group of people 90-97% white.

Yes, actually I can imagine Barack Obama sitting across from unnamed staffers from undisclosed agencies saying, “Find me a way to target just the white people.  That’s what I want.”

I can imagine this not because I am a racist, but because Barack Obama is a racist.  And worse.  Obama takes the philosophy of his intellectual mentor,  Saul Alinksy, that the ends really do justify the means.  Thus, whatever he says, whatever he does, it cannot be taken at face value.  Think of it this way:  the Muslims have these two doctrines, one, in which infidels should be turned into slaves or slaughtered, and another, Taqiyya, which gives them latitude to lie to infidels however they please.  Whoever does not take precautions, having learned this, deserves exactly what they get.  Obama also believes you can lie (or do anything, really) so long as the cause is great enough.  And we know he believes that whites have enjoyed entirely too much privilege over the centuries.  No, he hasn’t said that explicitly.  He’s not an idiot.

I don’t believe gun ownership is a ‘race’ issue, per se.  But I do know he hates gun owners and believes that the only people who should have guns are those who work for him.  However, you can only mess with gun owners so much–by definition.  So, if you can’t confiscate their guns, you can at least inflict harm on gun owners.   (But if you could take their guns, that would be icing on the cake.)  By driving up the costs of ammunition, you drain gun owners of some of their surplus cash.  At the same time, more of their money goes into the government coffers.

For example, today I paid $20 for a box of 22 shells that two years ago I would have paid $10 for.  That’s $10 more out of my pocket, and a doubling in the amount of sales tax that goes to the state. More money is funneled to the state and Federal government via the ammunition manufacturers who, while making money hand over fist, also have to turn over 40-60% of their profit to the government in the form of taxes.  While some people may be making out like bandits by the shortage, more money than before is getting sucked out of the wallets of individual Americans and the greater amounts represents a larger tax windfall for the government, further down the chain.

People who don’t buy guns and ammunition won’t, by definition, be impacted by this shortage.  In other words, people that Obama likes won’t generally be targeted by the shortage.  Talk about a win-win!

Are you so sure they don’t think this way?  This is the administration of Cass Sunstein, where by ‘nudging’ and manipulation you get people to do what they normally would not do, often by small increments.  Combined with the hubris and Alinskyite elitism of those who populate the Obama administration, anything is possible.   And if what we do know is troubling, imagine the breadth of things we don’t know.

I do not assert this is true, but it would cover a goodly number of otherwise disparate facts and observations.  Such is the dismal fare of a conspiracy theorist, deprived of reliable information by this government, allegedly of the people, by the people, and for the people.


How to steal an election, Alinsky-Style

It is hard to believe that I trust the government any less than I already did, but the latest ‘big three’ are really doing a trick, and my perception is that I’m not the only one fuming.  Last week I made a case for making your default position on government statements and explanations “This is a lie.”  The reasoning was that they would only try to do such cover-ups if they already had good reason to think they worked.  In other words, as bad as Benghazi, the AP intrusion, and the IRS oppression scandals are, it’s the things we don’t know about, the things that did not trigger warning bells, that ought to really concern us.

My post was an appeal to liberals and Democrats, who ostensibly care about freedom and liberty, to have them observe that it is the erection of the many layers of agencies, committees, and bureaucracies–all there for our common good, we are told–that allows such things to happen.  No new oversight committee will do the trick.  A new supervising agency can be bought off just as the other ones were.  (This, incidentally, is a premise behind this short story I wrote).  The only solution that will work, given the reality of human nature, is a sweeping reduction of the government’s size and scope.

As this recent article illustrates, evidence is mounting that the IRS targeting of conservative groups was done in coordination and cooperation with Democrat politicians, and perhaps Obama himself.   Maybe it was only his blessing, but it is hard to believe assurances that none of this is true.  What do we expect them to say?

I was left scratching my head after the last election.  It seemed unfathomable to me that just two years earlier, ‘Tea Party’ principles overwhelmed the nation, spurred on by Obamacare and other government intrusions, and then retained the gains made, but did not topple Obama.   Obama received 4 million less votes, but Romney only picked up 1 million more than McCain had.*  Even taking into consideration the millions of anti-Obama voters that could not get past the bile in their throat in order to vote for Romney, this is difficult to believe.  Remember, Republicans held most of their other gains, and even in a ‘toss up’ state like Wisconsin, Scott Walker won a recall election and the GOP would retake the Senate, giving them back full control of all the branches of government in the state.  In Wisconsin.

If this is the case in Wisconsin, it is just hard to imagine how it could be otherwise, elsewhere.

I wasn’t the only one to wonder if the election had been stolen, but hard information was not easy to come by.  You can’t very well act without hard information, so the matter died.  But the IRS scandal illustrates that there are other ways to steal an election, and it doesn’t have to mean voting on behalf of dead guys or discovering previously unknown boxes of ballots.

You can flip a switch in the great bureaucratic machine and point it in a particular direction, and, under the cover of memos and through a blanket of soul-sucking required forms and questionnaires and delayed approvals, hamper your opposition from being able to act.

All this, with plausible deniability.

To what degree was this hampering effective?  We’ll never know, now, will we?  And you can bet this wasn’t the only strategy they employed.

Obama is a follower of the Saul Alinsky school, and if you have read Alinsky’s book, “Rules for Radicals”, you will understand the problem.  Alinsky advocated for using any and all means to achieve your goals.  He explicitly said that the ends do justify the means.  He warned against setting policy until you get power, and urged that you should get power, by hook or by crook:  everything else takes care of itself after that.  Lie, cheat, steal… its all on the table ‘for the cause.’

When I discovered this in 2008, I realized that Obama and his ilk were not playing by the rules that most Americans embrace.  America believes in playing by the rules without special advantages.  America has long rejected the notion that the ‘ends justify the means.’

The people who now run the government do not share these values.  However bad Romney was as a candidate–and he was bad–it does not seem likely that he belongs in the ‘by hook or by crook’ camp.  I swallowed my bile, and voted for him.

But how many people were not allowed to hear the best case for why Obama and his administration is packed with lying, manipulative weasels, because the Obama administration stymied efforts to make that case?

The 2012 election was stolen, Alinsky-style.  Who knows what other tactics they used that we haven’t even discovered yet.  We may even ask:  what is it they did that is so much worse than the IRS thing that they don’t want us to know about?  After all, they were the ones who spilled the beans on the IRS scandal.  We’ll never know, and that is the problem:  we can never know if the truth is the truth, when it comes from the government’s lips.

The only solution is to strip the government down to its bare essentials.  Unless we do that, it will continue to be fertile territory for people to promote their agenda via bureaucratic machinations.  Our only recourse is to remove the habitat the weasels live, thrive, and reproduce in.  It cannot be redeemed.  If you put it into Republican hands, it will be vulnerable to the same kinds of things (eg, see:  Nixon).  If you don’t want this kind of thing from happening, you can’t trust them not to abuse their power, you have to see to it that they don’t have the power to abuse in the first place.

I appeal to my Republican/conservative friends:  once we do have the power, let us not fall into the trap of thinking we can ‘make it better.’  We’ve got to get rid of it.  Axe the Department of Education, the IRS, the EPA, and so on.  Starve the beast, and give him no where to lay his head; lest he turn and devour the one who sought to tame him.


Top 10 Reasons Not to Trust the Government

If you have been watching the main stream news, you will have recently noticed an uptick in reports about a situation that many of us have known about for months and months.  I am speaking, of course, of Benghazi.

Watching liberal, Obama sympathizers come out with what looks like disgust with the Obama administration suggests we’ve finally arrived, after much excavating and stripping away of layers of ideological commitments, to something passing as common ground.  (See here for an example.)

Listening to reports over the last couple of weeks, I was struck with the thought that it is really quite astonishing that people would be so arrogant as to think they could really pull off this kind of a cover-up.   I quickly corrected myself;  it isn’t astonishing at all.  Ample evidence exists to suggest that this kind of thing goes on all the time.  Obviously, they thought they could pull it off because they’ve already pulled off similar cover-ups on multiple occasions.

With Benghazi, their hands got caught in the cookie jar, but there is no telling how many times they’ve already absconded with cookies.

People are right to look at this incident as one more reason to put less faith in the government–as in no faith.  There is no way for the average man on the street to know when the government is telling the truth or not, and thus the wisest course of action is to assume that it is lying, all of the time.

The admission that the IRS has been targeting conservative organizations supports this inference, as even that rascal liberal Joe Klein alludes to:

Yet again, we have an example of Democrats simply not managing the government properly and with discipline. This is just poisonous at a time of skepticism about the efficacy of government. And the President should know this: the absence of scandal is not the presence of competence. His unwillingness to concentrate — and I mean concentrate obsessively — on making sure that government is managed efficiently will be part of his legacy.

Managing the government ‘properly and with discipline’?  ‘Efficiently”?  Is this a question of competence?  Really?  I am practically counting on the government to not act competently and efficiently, when faced with developments such as:

I mean, what can possibly go wrong?

Our best bet is that all these people screw it up;  if they get it right, we’re not talking about the ‘efficacy of government’, we’re talking about tyranny and totalitarianism.

All of the above links come from just ONE DAY’s reporting on the Drudge Report!

(Also today:  the story about the woman teacher busted for having sex with a dog and the man doing something to his peacock.  I assume both cases were consensual, so I don’t know what the big deal is to our society chock full of secular humanists that make arguments left and right that ought to make such things perfectly acceptable.  But that is a different post.)

Now, I suppose that readers of this post will suspect a strong conservative/libertarian bent to it, and will be quick to point out that just as many examples can be produced from Republican presidents, such as that evil, evil, evil, man, George W. Bush.

Let us simply concede it;   but do you really mean to say, with a straight face, that more government is the solution?

There is a sentiment out there that says that we shouldn’t say such bad things about the government, because ‘we are the government.’  Trust me, Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and yes, even George Bush, do not agree with that sentiment.  They are the rulers, and we are the ones ruled.  A very small fraction of American society can pay the price of admission required to be an actual person of influence in the ‘government.’

I am speaking to the liberal progressive secular humanist that has not lost his mind, that has not lost his common decency and common humanity, that sees in Benghazi something that leaves a bad taste in his mouth and looks with concern at the tiny sampling of extremely concerning intrusions in the links above… whatever your good intentions might be, don’t you see that the only hope for America is not to give our government more power, but to strip away as much of it as possible as quickly as we can?  I’m practically begging you, here.

Chances are, you’re the kinda guy that says, “Well, there’s always bugs to work out” or “There will be bumps in the road.”  And if you are, I say you deserve exactly what you get.  You will not get sympathy from me.  You continue to give power to people who are not ‘we the people.’ What do you expect is going to happen?

Whatever it happens to be, you can be sure that what you actually hear about will just be the tip of the iceberg.  It’s time to wise up, while it still matters;  if, that is, it does in fact still matter.


kudos to anyone who can detect all 10 of the reasons not to trust the government, embedded in this post.



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Associated pages, if only by 2 or 3 degrees of separation.

Sntjohnny.com — Christian Apologetics Ministry Blog

nssm200.com — Kissinger Report

jaffememo.com — the Infamous memo detailing Planned Parenthood’s population control mentality

eugenics.us — primary sources related to the ideological roots of the Eugenics movement

wechoselife.com — pro-life book by Anthony Horvath

christianwritingcontest.com — Athanatos Ministry’s Novel and Non-Fiction Contests

christianartsfestival.us — Athanatos Ministry’s summer Christian arts festival

christianwritingworkshops.com — Christian Writing Workshops

academyofapologetics.com — Apologetics Academy focusing on modules and literary apologetics

antonyflew.us — Information about Antony Flew’s conversion and the Flew-Horvath correspondence

apologeticslibrary.com — library of classic, essential readings in the defense of Christianity (apologetics)

apologeticsvideos.net — apologetics video sharing

assaultbook.com — Assault on Saint Agnes by Award Winning Author Joseph Courtemanche

athanatosministries.org — Publishing, apologetics through the arts, apologetics ministry of Anthony Horvath, PhD

bardandbook.com — innovative publishing, author, and reader community



birthpangs.com — AR Horvath’s telling of ideological and armed conflict across a post-American landscape

butchgregory.com — Author Jamie Greening

christianartsfestival.us – athanatos arts and apologetics wisconsin festival



The post Domain Map appeared first on Athanatos Christian Ministries.


Earth Day is Evil because Earth Day is Not about the Environment

“The power of population is so superior to the power of the earth to produce subsistence for man, that premature death must in some shape or other visit the human race. The vices of mankind are active and able ministers of depopulation. They are the precursors in the great army of destruction, and often finish the dreadful work themselves. But should they fail in this war of extermination, sickly seasons, epidemics, pestilence, and plague advance in terrific array, and sweep off their thousands and tens of thousands. Should success be still incomplete, gigantic inevitable famine stalks in the rear, and with one mighty blow levels the population with the food of the world”.

All children born, beyond what would be required to keep up the population to a desired level, must necessarily perish, unless room is made for them by the deaths of grown persons. We should facilitate, instead of foolishly and vainly endeavoring to impede, the operations of nature in producing this mortality.”

Thomas Malthus, An essay on the principle of population, 1798.  (Two different quotes from the same piece)

If the doctrine is true, that the fittest only should live, then it follows as a rational corollary that, in a society of rational men, where the interests of a race capable of indefinite development are blended, that “the fittest only should be born.”  […]  Why should not the law adopt the sound maxim, that no person has the right to throw upon the charities of the world, his diseased, deformed and insane offspring?

R.Z. Mason, 1878, in a Wisconsin journal.

Indeed, it has been concluded that compulsory population-control laws, even including laws requiring compulsory abortion, could be sustained under the existing Constitution if the population crisis became sufficiently severe to endanger the society.

John Holdren (with Paul Ehrlich) in a 1977 textbook.  Holdren is presently the chief science officer in the Obama administration.

The biggest cause of climate change is climate changers: human beings. Deciding to stop at two children, or at least to have one child less, is the simplest, quickest and most significant thing any of us could do to leave a sustainable and habitable planet for our children and grandchildren.

John Guillebaud in OPT Press release quoted in The Guardian, 12 July, 2006

In extreme situations, where states or regions may be almost uninhabitable through environmental damage, one-child policies may become unavoidable. However, such policies should only be introduced as a last resort and after full and democratic consultation. Generally one-child policies are unnecessary, counter-productive and liable to discount human rights.

YouthQuake:  “Population, fertility and environment in the 21st century.”  (2009) [produced in Britain by the Optimum Population Trust.]



I selected these quotes, out of hundreds like them I have on file, to allow the reader to see 200 years at a glance evidence for the following claim:

Whether it is the 1800s or just a few years ago or even the present day… whether the problem is ‘war’ and ‘famine’ (Malthus), the ‘interests of the race’ (Mason), the ‘population crisis’ (Holdren), ‘climate change’ (Guillebaud), or ‘environmental damage’ (YouthQuake)… the solution to the problem is always the same:  get rid of people, and in particular, children–preferably before they are born.

Isn’t that interesting?

You know, one would almost think that what folks really want is the ability to dominate their fellow man in a very fundamental way, and the only thing that changes over the decades is the pretext for their domineering.

I was thinking about this because next Monday is Earth Day, and my ministry will be hosting an online conference that has Steven Mosher as our keynote.  Mosher was present in China when they enacted their one-child policy.  An atheist at the time, the barbarism of the policy pushed him towards Christianity and eventually becoming a Catholic, and since then exposing myths about ‘over population.’  He will be speaking on Earth Day on the topic, “Save the Earth; Get Rid of the People? The Inhumanity of Earth Day”

I don’t know what he is going to say, exactly, but it made me think about what I would say, and I think what I would say is… is it asking too much to ask that people top being so darn gullible?  I feel this point acutely when I observe that the goal is elimination of people and control of the ones who are left. .. You’d think people would notice!

On the face of it, there is nothing particularly offensive about the idea of protecting the environment.  People across the political and ideological spectrum can theoretically find common ground.  But let’s consider the list of things you can do to protect the environment… produce less trash, recycle, properly dispose of toxic waste, … compel women to get abortions.


Notice how the people who kick around the idea of making women get abortions are the very same that go on and on and on about a woman’s ‘right to choose.’   How hard is it to recognize the intrinsic contradiction in these sentiments?  If seeing such sentiments squeezed together by the same people and sometimes in the same document isn’t enough to create the reasonable suspicion that they are LYING about their real intentions, I wonder what it would take?  Do you need to actually be held down while the ‘Constitutionally’ protected public health officials suck the brains out of your unborn baby?*

Holdren and Erhlich would say, “Well, but that’s only ‘if the population crisis became sufficiently severe to endanger the society.’  We are not at that point.”

OPT would say, “Well, that’s the kind of thing we would only entertain ‘as a last resort and after full and democratic consultation.'”

Phew!  Boy, I feel better!  Don’t you?

And what about Earth Day?  Earth Day was founded and promoted by radicals such as Paul Ehrlich who advocated for compulsory sterilizations and putting sterilants in the water supply (among many other things) to ‘reduce the population’ and, oh yea, ‘save the earth.’  (See his The Population Bomb as one example.)  Are you so sure it is the environment they are concerned about?

I think one reason why Earth Day has wide appeal because ostensibly it calls attention to issues that people of all ideologies can support without bickering.   This also makes it a prime place to do propaganda.  It is only a matter of time before people discover that these ways to ‘save the earth’ actually will do little, and that the environmentalists all know that the ‘only’ effective thing to do is reduce the number of people.  I guess the hope is that people will decide on their own to limit their family size… so the government doesn’t have to come and do it for you.

But I have this sneaking suspicion that there are people who would very much like the government to have that power, and I don’t think they are motivated one lick by ‘environmental’ concerns.

This Earth Day, don’t be a dupe.  Study the history of the day and the persons involved, and find out what they really believed.  It begs the obvious question:  do they still believe these things?  Which begs the next obvious question:  are you actually falling in step with their agenda?

* There is sometimes an insistence to refer to the person as a ‘fetus’ at this point, but when the person is wanted, we dispense with that, and refer to the person as a baby.  I am taking it for granted that it would be the wanted ones that would be compulsory aborted, not the unwanted ones, which they were going to abort anyway.


Pro-Life Apologetics Conference: Defending the Faith is a Defense of Life

In just a little over a week, my ministry, Athanatos Christian Ministries, will be hosting our fourth annual online apologetics conference.

Each year, we pick a theme in which apologetics is integrated and applied.  Previous years saw apologetics incorporated into the arts, etc.  This year, the theme is life issues, and abortion in particular.

One’s views about God tends to impact one’s views on Man.  It is not a coincidence that people are more likely to describe themselves as pro-life if they are a Christian and pro-choice if they are an atheist.  On the former view, people have intrinsic value, and so there are boundaries to what you can do to them and for what reasons.  On the latter view, people are just ‘meat machines’, and how you treat them depends only on the consensus of society.

Ironically, despite these two views being essentially two sides of the same coin, the secular humanist regards the Christian view as merely religious–and therefore not permitted expression in public society–and their view as purely scientific, so they can do whatever in hell they want.

Of course, on their view, Christians are part of society as well, and since all values are determined by ‘might makes right’ at the level of society, there is no particular reason why Christians can’t impose their notions.  Similarly, one cannot object if some other society–say, the Nazis–think that ‘defectives’ should be eliminated.  But they do object…. but I will explore this incoherency in more detail in my presentation at the conference, ‘Christianity and Abortion.”

But I did not choose this theme with atheists in mind.  Instead, I had Christians in mind.  How many times have I chatted with fellow Christians (or had them send me angry emails) insisting that Christianity ought not be involved in ‘political’ affairs at all?  I’ve had pastors tell me that the mission of the Church was nothing more than the preaching of the Gospel and (rightly) administering of the Sacraments, or, more generally, Christians say that our business amounts to nothing more than evangelism.

The net effect of this approach is Christians taking a perspective perfectly in line with what secular humanists hope Christians take.  (And the secular humanists are doing their part to convince Christians to stay home and shut up, if you haven’t noticed.)

On the face of it, these Christians seem to be taking a high view of their faith, positing that it is above the fray of merely temporal affairs, but in reality, it implies that Christianity is not actually true.

The idea that ‘faith’ is some kind of ethereal disembodied set of notions that has no bearing and impact on how we live our actual lives is closer to docetism, or perhaps gnosticism.

It is a question of what is real and true about the universe:  are we all, in reality, creatures made by God and then redeemed on the cross–even before we were born?

Did God really come, in the flesh?

When God made everything, did he not in fact declare it ‘good’?  Isn’t it an implied aspect of the incarnation itself that ‘temporal’ affairs aren’t inconsequential?  He became ‘temporal’ for our sake.  Theoretically, he could have just simply stated that our sins were forgiven without entering into our affairs to suffer and die via the machinations of the Jewish and Roman legal systems.

Is, “he suffered under Pontius Pilate” an article of faith, or a fact of history?

To the degree you believe the latter, rather than the former, you will recognize that we cannot possibly regard ourselves or each other as disposable sacks of flesh.  My observation is that those who believe the latter is supported by objective, solid evidence, tend to put a high value on each human life, born and unborn, young or old, able or disabled.

Thus, it follows that if one were interested in advancing ‘pro-life’ causes, the most effective way to do this would be to create more Christians and equip them with solid reasons for believing that what they believe is actually true–objectively true.  The rest would practically take care of itself.

And that’s why this year’s conference theme links two topics that I do not believe have ever been so explicitly connected before:  Defending the faith IS a defense of life.

I will certainly grant that the above leaves unaddressed a number of important issues and topics.  I certainly don’t want anyone to think the solution is to create a theocracy.  I believe the framers of the Constitution struck the right balance on that score, and that at any rate, we are about as far away as a theocracy as one can get.  We are on the verge of an ‘atheocracy’, if anything.  There is a balance to be struck, because it is just as certain that this earth and all that is in it will pass away;  we should give priority to eternal things, not temporal things.

But perhaps that is my point:  the only thing that will last (on the Christian view, if Christianity is true) in this creation are the people.  If the Gospel is not for them, for all of them, by definition, then are we quite sure we are really preaching the Gospel of eternal life if we are not prepared to stand and defend life in the ‘here and now’?

The conference does not aim to answer that question, but I think it provokes it, and I hope it generates good and fruitful discussion.

The conference is April 21-23 and held entirely online.  Registration is $19.95 and you can attend the first day for free, although you will still need to register.  Learn more and register here:  http://onlineapologeticsconference.com/




Life Unworthy of Life by Derek Elkins

luol_small Derek Elkins’ Life Unworthy of Life came before my eyes, from his perspective, at the most opportune time. I was immersed in studying the philosophies and ideologies that had led to the Holocaust, and the T4 Project (which the book is about) was explicit foreshadowing of that later horror. I was instantly drawn into the manuscript. From my perspective, however, I could have chosen a better time to read it. Evidently, my plane had been moved to a different gate and they had been calling my name for the better part of twenty minutes… “Argher Heervreth blah blah blah…” … “Theeny Hurgle, [indecipherable]…”

 If it hadn’t been for the fact that I suddenly thought it very odd that they had not begun boarding at my gate with just 3 minutes before takeoff and coming to the conclusion that it was unlikely they would fly a plane with just a single passenger, I would not have hurriedly checked the board, and I would not have, in a panic, flung myself in the direction of the gate where my plane actually was waiting for me.

 “[indecipherable] Aneeny Gursheth?” the attendant said as I flew by her.

 It was the spring of 2012. I was in St. Louis for some pro-life stuff. It was my task to select the winners for my ministry’s annual Christian Novel Contest, and Derek’s book was one of the finalists. Now, does making the judge nearly miss his plane count for a book, or against it?

 The question remains unanswered; nevertheless, it ended up being the grand prize winner. Not long after that, I would extend an offer to publish the book. Derek would accept.

 And now we are just two weeks away from its official release, on April 23, 2013.

 My how time flies.

 Fly, indeed. Today, calling someone a ‘Nazi’ or a ‘fascist’ is about the worst thing that you can say about someone, but few people actually have any idea what the terms mean or meant. And that is to be expected, I suppose. Another term similarly deployed is ‘zealot,’ but who can possibly recall the actual attitudes of such people who lived 2,000 years ago? And that, of course, is when Hitler lived and fascism thrived. People today are only vaguely aware of what happened seventy years ago. They’re not going to know the true sentiments of people like the Nazis, who existed only in ancient history, millennia ago.

Finish Reading



I’ve changed my mind: Keep your religious views about abortion out of politics!

Or… I’ll keep mine out, if you’ll keep yours… or something like that… keep reading…

In our country, there is a general feeling that only positions backed by actual fact should drive public policy. ‘Religion’ is perceived to be the realm of personal opinion. Even Christians tend to accept the view that people are allowed to have their opinion, but they aren’t allowed to impose that opinion on others. The result is that many Christians refrain from acting ‘politically’ because they see their own beliefs as nothing more than ‘mere opinion.’

Secularists tend to be people who have dispensed with ‘religion’ altogether, and like to think that they are entirely ‘fact driven.’

When these ideas collide, we observe something very curious: secular humanists conclude that they can advocate for anything that they want in the public sphere, because nothing they believe is ‘religious, ‘ while distinctly Christian viewpoints are forbidden from entering the public domain, since those will be, by definition, ‘religious.’ And again, even Christians gravitate to that view.

This tends to lead to debates and discussions and policy proposals that take the ‘facts’ of the secularists as the starting points. We are expected to proceed on their terms. And why not? Surely without the ‘religious’ component, those ‘facts’ are as close to actually being real descriptions of the world as one could get, right?

But what if ‘religion’ and ‘fact’ are not opposites? Continue reading


Dorothy Sayers on Gay Marriage? The Other Six Deadly Sins

This post has Christians in mind who support traditional marriage.  Gay marriage proponents and non-Christians are not in view.  Read the following with this in mind.


Recent developments on the ‘gay marriage’ front, and developments over the last decade, reminded me of an essay written by that insightful Christian critic Dorothy Sayers way back in the 1940s.  Here is the relevant portion:

The Other Six Deadly Sins

Perhaps the bitterest commentary on the way in which Christian doctrine has been taught in the last few centuries is the fact that to the majority of people the word immorality has come to mean one thing and one thing only.  By a hideous irony, our shrinking reprobation of that sin has made us too delicate so much as to name it, so that we have come to use for it words that were made to cover the whole range of human corruption.  A man may be greedy and selfish; spiteful, cruel, jealous, and unjust; violent and brutal; grasping, unscrupulous, and a liar;  stubborn and arrogant; stupid, morose, and dead to every noble instinct–and still we are ready to say of him that he is not an immoral man.  I am reminded of a young man who once said to me in perfect simplicity:  “I did not know there were seven deadly sins;  please tell me the names of the other six.”

About the sin called luxuria or lust, I shall therefore say only three things.  First, that it is a sin, and that it ought be called plainly by its own name, and neither huddled away under a generic term such as immorality, nor confused with love.

Secondly, that up till now the Church, in hunting down this sin, has had the active alliance of Caesar, who has been concerned to maintain family solidarity and the orderly devolution of property in the interests of the state.  But now that contract and not status is held to be the basis of society, Caesar need no longer rely on the family to maintain social solidarity; and now that so much property is held anonymously by trusts and joint stock companies, the laws of inheritance lose a great deal of their importance.  Consequently, Caesar is now much less interested than he was in the sleeping arrangements of his citizens, and has in this manner cynically denounced his alliance with the Church.  This is a warning against putting one’s trust in any child of man–particularly in Caesar.  If the Church is to continue her campaign against lust, she must do so on her own–that is, on sacramental–grounds; and she will have to do it, if not in defiance of Caesar, at least without his assistance.

Quoted out of The Whimsical Christian.

I concur.

My friends, if this was the case in the 1940s, and I suppose it probably was, then I think we can safely say we are at this point today.    Regardless of what SCOTUS says this June, I suggest we consider making an orderly retreat, and then….


Gay Marriage One more Piece of the Progressive’s Social Engineered Rube Goldberg Machine

Do you know what a Rube Goldberg machine is?  Here are some pictures if you don’t.  It’s an elaborate machine composed of unnecessary parts that requires an extraordinary amount of tinkering to get working correctly.

Rube Goldberg machines are really fun to play with, but only on the principle that “It’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt.”

Progressives are a group of people who accept the premise that it is society’s right, nay, duty, to tinker-tinker-tinker with things in pursuit of the ‘common good.’  If someone gets hurt in the meantime, they’re ‘ok’ with that.  I hear this a lot when Democrats are asked about problems that surface as thousand page bills become laws, “Well, there will be bumps in the road” or “While there are kinks to be worked out, …”  You’ve got to break some eggs to make some omelets.

The result of such thinking is that in trying to fix one perceived problem, the ‘solutions’ erected invariably create new problems, and the solutions to these problems create yet new problems, and so on and so forth-literally, forever.  Back in 2010 I warned the soon to be victorious Tea Party to be careful about accepting the premise that we have the right and duty to tinker forever with the ‘machine’:

These people believe that leaving things be leads to social inequalities and only the machinations of the government can balance it all out.  Of course, when you tinker with part of the machine you will inevitably disturb a different part of the machine.  When your machine has a million parts which all are interconnected, if you perceive that your job is to personally make sure the machine runs with efficiency- as you perceive efficiency- then no doubt, a high level of intelligence is required, and not just by the president, but by the hundreds of other agencies established to monitor all the different parts of the machine.

I was thinking about this today when I read Juan William’s piece in the WSJ on race and guns.  I typically sigh and groan my way through whatever Juan is saying, but there was something in this one that caught my eye:

Almost 50 years ago, when the 1964 Civil Rights Act was passed, the national out-of-wedlock birthrate was 7%. Today it is over 40%. According to the CDC, the out-of-wedlock birthrate for white children was just 2% in the 1960s. Today it is 30%. Among black children, the out-of-wedlock birthrate has skyrocketed from 20% in the 1960s to a heartbreaking 72% today. The Hispanic out-of-wedlock rate, which has been measured for a much shorter period, was below 40% in 1990 and stands at more than 50% as of the 2010 census.

This is pretty interesting, don’t you think?  Interestingly, while Juan mentions this and highlights the importance, he doesn’t speak to what may be the cause of this significant shift.  And please note that while it has disproportionately affected blacks, Juan also points out that the national figures have also increased significantly, more than 4 times so (from 7% to 40%).  No-fault divorce is certainly one specific thing we can point to, but before there was no-fault divorce, there was this idea that we can tinker-tinker-tinker with society.

On the progressive point of view, moving to no-fault divorce was no big deal, because marriage is no more than a social construct, anyway.  There is just one teensy-weensy problem:  marriage is not just a social construct.

There are specific, non-arbitrary reasons why there is something we refer to as the institution of marriage.  When you disregard these non-arbitrary reasons, they don’t go away.  You know why?  Because they are not arbitrary.  Get it?

Consider this example:  if you put your hand into the blade of a running lawn mower, your hand is going to be ground into a bloody pulp.  Does this fact displease you?  Does it strike you as unfair?  Should you like to say, “Oh, but people should be allowed to stick their hands into the running blades of lawn mowers without their hands being reduced to pulp!  Let us correct this injustice with a law!”

Such a law would be pointless and worthless, because it doesn’t really matter what you think.  When you put your hand into the moving blade, it is going to be pulpified.  But the social engineer of the progressive sort is not to be deterred:  “We shall require that lawn mowers be so constructed so that…”  And the construction of the Rube Goldberg machine has begun.  The ‘experts’ will get to work trying to balance the ability of a blade to cut grass against people’s ‘right’ to stick their hands underneath the carriage without them being obliterated.  You can very well expect, on this view, that there will be a few ‘bumps in the road’ and ‘kinks to work out.’

Now, of course there is presently no movement for such a law, because people don’t need to be told that if you make a lawn mower such that it won’t blend your hand into a puree, it won’t effectively cut grass any more, and, well, blended hands are bad.  There is a de facto, default equilibrium that emerges–without anyone feeling a need to pass any kind of law at all, one way or the other–as people come to terms with objective reality.

Marriage is like that.  It is a word we use to reflect an objective reality that exists whether anyone likes it or not.  And, as in most cases where people defy objective reality, the consequences of messing with the ‘equilibrium’ results in getting people hurt.  No-fault divorce has hurt people on a broad scale;  I am one of the persons who has been hurt by it, so I can speak from personal experience.  Moreover, I have seen the consequences on adults and children all around me.  No-fault divorce was an attempt to circumvent the way that people really are, the way they are ‘built’, the way new people are made, and the best conditions for the way these new people grow up to be adults themselves.

The result of this tinkering has of course led to all sorts of government programs to try to counteract the consequences of this government ‘program.’  All of this tinkering assumes that ‘marriage’ was a mere social construct and wasn’t the way it was for a particular reason, but, in fact, that assumption is just not valid.  The components of ‘marriage’ surfaced ‘naturally’ because of certain, non-arbitrary realities that will not change, even if we change the definition.

Now, there will be someone who says, “This is just your religious viewpoint, and you should not impose your views on others!”

To this person I must say, “You sir, are an idiot.”

The following propositions are not ‘religious’ in the slightest:

  • Men have penises.
  • Women have vaginas.
  • Men have sperm.
  • Women have eggs.
  • Children are the direct result of sperm ‘interacting’ with eggs.
  • Children are not made any other way (yet).
  • Until recently, the way that sperm cells make their acquaintance with eggs is that that the men, who have penises, put their penises inside the woman’s vagina, and from there an ejaculation event takes place, sending the sperm into the vagina.
  • A vagina can only hold one penis at a time.
  • A penis can only be in one vagina at a time.
  • The word for this event/activity we call ‘sex.’
  • A newly generated child is always the result of just one man and just one woman participating in the sexual act.

I feel some embarrassment at having to be so direct about this, but despite the tremendous amounts of money given by the government to Planned Parenthood and our schools in pursuit of ‘sex education,’ there seems to be some ignorance about the above propositions.  Much to Planned Parenthood’s glee, our young people continue to engage in this activity, and they continue (to everyone’s great surprise!) to have children ‘out of wedlock.’  I say ‘glee,’ because of course Planned Parenthood would go out of business if this no longer happened.  But at any rate, we live in a society where men and women are having sex willy-nilly and remain shocked, positively shocked, when babies result.  (Granted, they are only babies if they are wanted… until then, they are only ‘fetuses’ and can be disposed of, like tumors.)

Now, from the above realities, other realities are derived.  When I mention these, some people will say that some of them are only my ‘religious’ viewpoint.

To these people, I must, regretfully, say:  “You are idiots.”

Please note, that I am not calling them ‘idiots’ because they disagree with my assertions, but rather that they wish to deride them as ‘religious’ and bigoted.

These realities are objective facts that emerge from people who ‘encounter’ the previous list of objective facts:

  • Sex, while being physical pleasure, also reflects and creates an emotional intimacy between the people who engage in it.  (No doubt, this is true even in ‘gay’ ‘sex’, too).
  • This intimacy has historically, and typically, distills into a desire to remain in a relationship with each other, exclusively, often for life;  this, we loosely call ‘marriage.’
  • The child that emerges from this process will thrive in an arrangement where the two partners in the sexual act continue to stay together, for life.
  • Where those two partners do not remain together, children experience various forms of pain–emotional, of course, but often materially, such as when a child is raised by a single parent.
  • While adoptive parents can be, and usually are, well regarded by their adopted children, adopted people tend to be very interested in their birth parents, and feel a connection to them regardless of how healthy and balanced their present situation is.
  • That is to say, people draw meaning and significance from where they came from, and the circumstances in which they were born.

Now, in defense of the people I have just named as ‘idiots,’ I admit that these propositions are not nearly as apparent, obvious, and self-evident as what happens if you stick your hand into a lawn mower.  (I can’t say as apparent, obvious, and self-evident as my first list of propositions, because, as I said, despite them being such, our society appears to have only some murky understanding of them).  Part of the problem, of course, has to do with the fact that people experience these dynamics differently, and they are difficult to quantify.  Another part of the problem is that they involve people, not things, and agents, not merely processes.  You can introduce a sperm to an egg in a test tube and measure the ‘results’, but it is not nearly so easy to raise children in numerous different kinds of family structures and then measure and monitor them to see how it goes.

Which leads to another important aspect of the problem, which is that the scope of time involved makes ‘self-evident’ assessments a little harder to make… the results of the ‘social experiment’ of no-fault divorce and other aspects of the ‘sexual revolution’ have taken decades to unfold, and the impacts have yet to be fully realized.  Not even one generation of results is enough to provide us with the ‘data’ we need to ‘properly tinker,’ because of course it is not only the children of the ‘no-fault generation’ we must look at, but the children that their children have.  Quite possibly, we will need to see many generations before the full impacts are apparent.

In the 1960s, when no-fault divorce was advocated and implemented, they (we may believe) sincerely thought that ‘marriage’ would actually improve, that the lives of children would be better, that society would ultimately benefit from the ‘openness’ and flexibility brought to bear on sexuality and relationships.  50 years later, I believe there is already evidence enough to see that this was WAAAAAAAY off base.

On the other hand, the argument that I am making in this post could have been made, and was made, in the 1960s.  Nothing has fundamentally changed about people, about sex, and about children, because these are not things that can be ‘tinkered’ with without predictable consequences.  It is just a fact that one man-one woman, life long monogamous relationships in which children are generated and allowed to grow to maturity is the ideal ‘construct’ for facilitating happiness for all involved–the man, the woman, and the children.  (I have no problem granting that this ideal is not easy to maintain, and often thwarted–but the ‘thwarting’ often is proof of the point, not a detraction).

Now, we may ask why the government should be involved in this process at all, if, generally speaking, it would naturally emerge anyway–as, historically it does and has.

There is only one rationale for ‘wider societal’ interjection into this process, and that centers around the children.

We do not have laws regulating friendship.  We do not have laws regulating affection.  This is because it is self-evidently the case that adults can make friends with whomever they please, and our affection for each other is thoroughly nobody else’s business, period.  If government ‘intrusion’ into ‘marriage’ is to be justified on this basis, then it cannot be justified at all.

When people cease to be ‘best friends forever’, the government doesn’t get involved, because it is generally accepted (still) that adults can fend for themselves on this score.  Children, however, are at the mercy of the adults’ decisions, and entirely vulnerable to their actions.  It is only insofar as these innocent agents can sometimes sorely use an advocate besides their own parents that the rest of us are concerned at all.

Now, gay marriage is another grand, social engineering experiment.  Like every other experiment of this sort, the impact and the consequences will take decades to unfold before there is sufficient ‘data’ to allow further progressive ‘tinkering.’  The ones at the center of this experiment will be the children, and it is only the children we have a societal obligation to.

If ‘gay marriage’ is widely adopted, it will be because society has moved to accept the view that the core element of ‘marriage’ is recognizing the ‘affection’ and ‘intimacy’ that two consenting adults have, ascribing legal status to it, and providing privileges to that ‘arrangement.’  If that is the prevailing determinant of what constitutes ‘marriage’, then the proper thing to do is to simply jettison ‘marriage’ as an issue for government to be involved in at all.

If the rationale for government involvement remains the protection of those that cannot protect themselves, then I highly doubt that we can justify constant and continued ‘tinkering’ with human relationships such as what we’ve seen for the last hundred years (beginning with the Bolsheviks), because it is precisely that kind of ‘tinkering’ that has inflicted various degrees and kinds of harm on this generation, now coping with previous tinkering.

But we seem to be beyond and past this.  We seem on track to continue adding ‘corrections’ to our social Rube Goldberg machine at the points where it ‘unexpectedly’ ends up hurting someone or many, many someones.  If ‘gay marriage’ is widely adopted, it will require more changes to the ‘machine.’

If ‘gay marriage’ is widely adopted, the government should simply completely disentangle itself from ‘marriage’ altogether, as it would cease to have a justified rationale for being involved, having discarded it in order to adopt ‘gay marriage’ (and no-fault divorce) in the first place.  Better to let the pieces fall where they may, and then, a hundred years from now, pick up the pieces again.

Personally, I wonder if at that point we’ll ever trust ‘society’ or the ‘government’ to tinker with human society in this manner again.  At any rate, whatever my views on homosexuality are, I have no interest–zero, zilch–in speaking to the physical pleasure and affection these folks wish to have, or passing any legislation about it one way or the other.  But I find it immoral to make children an object of experimentation; if these are not to be our rationale for ‘intruding’ in the affairs of others, then it would be better, on my view, for the government to walk away from the issue of ‘marriage’ altogether.

Then time will tell.



The odds of Life versus Picking Every Game Right in March Madness

I saw this article about picking every game correctly in the March Madness bracket state the following:

Confident about your NCAA Tournament bracket? You might want to think again. The odds of predicting a perfect bracket are one in 9.2 quintillion (or more precisely: 1 in 9,223,372,036,854,775,808). Best of luck with that.

That’s 1 in 263, or to convert that for what follows, 1 in 9.2 x 1018, or, if I’m doing the math right, I can probably just round it up slightly to 1 in 1019 or 1 in ten quintillion.

Now, I would like you to imagine that after the tournament was over, someone presented you with a perfect bracket, and insisted that they had filled it out before the tournament took place.  I don’t know if it would make a difference to you if they said that they had carefully selected the picks or if they had simply drawn them from out of a hat.  Personally, I would find it more plausible (but still not believe it, simply on their testimony) if they had carefully selected the picks, and they were experts in college basketball.  Others, however, apparently find blind chance more plausible, and these, we will call atheists.

I took note of this particular article because of the direction the comments on my last post took regarding abiogenesis.

It’s been awhile since I’ve played with this topic, so I went looking for some figures regarding the ‘odds of life forming.’  On a pro-evolutionist site, I found this discussion:

The calculation which supports the creationist argument begins with the probability of a 300-molecule-long protein forming by total random chance. This would be approximately 1 chance in 10390. This number is astoundingly huge. By comparison, the number of all the atoms in the observable universe is 1080. So, if a simple protein has that unlikely chance of forming, what hope does a complete bacterium have?

Ok.  So to recap:

  • Odds of generating a perfect NCAA bracket in advance:  1 in 1019
  • Probability of a 300 molecule long protein forming by random chance:  1 chance in 10390
  • Number of atoms in the observable universe:  1080



The author then goes on to deny that it needs to be all this bad… failing to take into account of course that life involves more than one protein and a whole variety of other considerations… so that, for example, we would be living in a state of self-delusion if we ignored the fact that there are millions of kinds of proteins that need to be concocted, and Nature only has a few billion years to work its magic.   Does someone want to calculate that probability?  1 in 10390 times 10???????.  I’ll leave it for someone else to work out.

Of course, this article doesn’t think it is all quite that bad, because, the author says, “if [abiogenesis] relied entirely on random chance, then yes, it would be impossible for life to form in this way. However, this is not the case.”

At this point, the author waves his magic wand and invokes Natural Selection, insisting that “Abiogenesis was a long process with many small incremental steps, all governed by the non-random forces of Natural Selection and chemistry.”

Evidently, this author assumes his readers will be complete idiots who aren’t aware of the fact that this statement is nothing more than a bald assertion based on the assumption that life emerged merely from natural processes.  It may perhaps be more plausible to imagine the process working itself out with many (10????????) steps over many (10?????????) years, but there is no evidence for that whatsoever except for ‘naturalismdidit’ combined with the stomach-turning conclusion “Holy crap, the honest conclusion is that there is NO way this happened!”

The author then attempts a more manageable proposal:

the simplest theorized self-replicating peptide is only 32 amino acids long. The probability of it forming randomly, in sequential trials, is approximately 1 in 1040, which is much more likely than the 1 in 10390 claim creationists often cite.

So, let’s recap:

  • Odds of generating a perfect NCAA bracket in advance:  1 in 1019
  • Probability of a 300 molecule long protein forming by random chance:  1 chance in 10390
  • Probability of a theorized simplest self-replicating peptide forming randomly:  1 in 1040
  • Number of atoms in the observable universe:  1080

We ask:  how many self-replicating peptides are there?  How many of them are “only 32 amino acids” long?  Isn’t this still highly improbable?  Would we be highly skeptical about someone’s their claim they had generated a perfect bracket at  1 in 1019 odds but be prepared to believe it is likely, plausible, or probable, that just one ‘simplest theorized’ peptide actually happened, with 1 in 1040 odds?  There are only 1080 atoms in the whole observable universe.  And how many atoms in a single peptide?

The author is aware of the silliness:

Though, to be fair, 1040 is still a very large number. It would still take an incredibly large number of sequential trials before the peptide would form.

To soften the problem, he has a solution:

But remember that in the prebiotic oceans of the early Earth, there would be billions of trials taking place simultaneously as the oceans, rich in amino acids, were continuously churned by the tidal forces of the moon and the harsh weather conditions of the Earth. [emphasis his]

Continue to bear in mind that the author is assuming readers who are all positively stupid, and have no idea that there is no evidence whatsoever for any ‘prebiotic oceans’, unless by ‘evidence’ you mean, “well, we’re here, and we got here somehow, and we can’t believe we got here via naturalistic processes unless we invoke some highly advantageous starting conditions.”  A primordial soup is not, by any means, the only theory about the earth’s initial conditions, either.  People get to just posit conditions based on the theory they are entertaining, which of course lets the cat out of the bag:  we don’t really know what the earth was like in this time.

We will pass over his other ad hoc assertions… that there would be billions of trials taking place, that they would be taking place simultaneously, that there were lots of amino acids roaming around (and where did these amino acids come from?), that the waters were being ‘churned’ by tidal forces, that the weather conditions were harsh, and so on and so forth.

All this sounds about as close to the worst version of ‘blind faith’ as any atheist could charge someone for having; ironic, but not surprising, that we find it being espoused by an atheist.

Bottom line:  With probabilities so ridiculously improbable as this, it is no wonder that people who sit down to investigate the issues find strict materialism so implausible to be almost laughable on its face.  They may not become Christians, but nor do they remain atheists.

Interesting side note:

In the conversation that spurred me to take notice of the original basketball article, the gent trotted out the typical talking point that abiogenesis is entirely separate and distinct from evolution.  When I was looking for pro-evolutionary articles talking about probabilities of life, I didn’t expect to find one that illustrated one of my other contentions, that when the tire meets the road, that distinction fades away completely.  In this article, the author brushes aside the ‘creationist’ assumption that these were merely ‘random processes’ that first formed life, and reminds us (as if it is a known, empirical fact) that:

Abiogenesis was a long process with many small incremental steps, all governed by the non-random forces of Natural Selection and chemistry.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t Natural Selection an evolutionary process?  So, is abiogenesis separate and distinct from evolution, or not?  Participants in this debate already know the answer:  it is separate and distinct when you are faced with the sad news that it is impossible for life to have emerged ‘by chance’, but when you want to improve your odds, it’s all one and the same, ‘governed by the the non-random forces of Natural Selection.”

You can believe these folks if you want, but you’ll never convince me that these people occupy the ‘high ground’ of ‘Reason.’  They seem to be the most steadfast advocates of ‘magic’ I come across.  But you should do your own research.  In the meantime, at the end of March Madness, I will show you my completed bracket.  Guess what… it will be the first perfect one in recorded history!