Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Man doesn't merely know: he knows that he knows. With his faculty for reflective consciousness, he can't help but contemplate the finitude of his own existence. Questions of ultimacy concern him. He is a religious animal—whether he believes his fate lies in worm meat or the world-to-come.

John Irving seems to think only Religionists of the Book—Christians, Muslims, Orthodox Jews—impose their reality tunnels on the rest of us. But history's bloodiest dictatorship was an atheistic state. Aggressive secularism is a reality tunnel, too.

With a vengeance did Josef Stalin practice his godless religion on others. Christians perished by the millions in his gulags—the "scientific" holocaust that dare not speak its name.

Religious freedom should work two ways: we should be free to practice the religion of our choice, but we must also be free from having someone else's religion practiced on us.

-John Irving, novelist (b. 1942)


Saturday, July 16, 2011

I have no use for Republicans, conservatives or supply-side economics. But if the economy grew in the wake of Reagan's tax increase, it grew in spite of the tax increase, not because of it. All things held equal (ceteris parabus, as the economists say), money in private hands is more likely to promote health, wealth, economic growth, lower golf scores and human happiness than money in the criminal government's hands.

How can it be otherwise? Do you believe the government wiser, more omniscient and ethical than the rest of us--the millions of semi-freely ("semi," thanks to the criminal government) acting players in the marketplace? Do you trust the IRS, the Pentagon, DEA, FDA, CIA, BATF, FBI, etc., more than Joe the Plumber next door?

Yeah, I know. We need the government to protect us from Goldman Sachs, General Motors and Northrop Grumman. Never mind that Goldman Sachs, General Motors and Northrop Grumman would have ceased to exist years ago without the government taxing Joe the Plumber to fund its corporate-welfare schemes. After all, that's why we have a government: to protect us from the greedy capitalists.


Saturday, July 02, 2011

How did Orwell put it? "If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face--forever." Now take a stroll through the cop-thuggery videos pockmarking YouTube. That future is now.

If that's my face on the receiving end, I don't want the boot removed in increments. I want the cop to pull back a bloody, footless stub!

Happy Independence Day, everybody!