Like a flock of birds we tend to follow whatever events the culture spews out at us. Somehow, various central powers of observation decide that an event is what we should be thinking about – it might be Pat Robertson this week for example – and when they have determined this, the entire food chain of media pivots and fixates on that event.
Newspapers write articles, bloggers on all sides chip in their take, talk radio rants about it, and TV covers it 24/7. The sources of information that actually follow the beat of their own drum and talk about something else (such as the writing of Borges for example) are few. Most websites and other media, down to Facebook user’s status updates are ALL ABOUT THE SAME STUFF. I tune it out and ignore it. If everyone is talking about Pat Robertson it makes me want to avoid the topic. Why is it like this? Who decided that everything that happens in Washington D.C. needs to be in the news on a daily basis? I could care less at this point. The implicit message of this focus on DC and Hollywood is that they are the places which matter to the exclusion of others. The similar lack of any meaningful coverage of church affairs, for example, implies that what happens in the church is of no import to the broader society, unless of course a Sodomite gets ordained.
Anyway, let’s talk about something other than what the tag cloud of the culture says is important.
It was a cool morning today as I voted down at the local fire station. Turnout was massively lower than last year. Last year people were coming out of the woodwork to vote for O or against him (in our district anyway). There were long lines and boisterous attitudes. Today there were two other voters.
The Democrats didn’t even bother to field a volunteer today handing out sample ballots! That surprised me, it was a first. The GOP was there with one guy, and he looked lonely. So all the enthusiasm is out of the season now that George Bush, the sacrificial victim has been driven out and we are back to the norm, which is dysfunction, debt and war with no one to blame. It isn’t yet the fault of the Chosen One, but it will be by 12. He’s looking more like LBJ and Carter by the minute.
I expect Deeds to lose in a blowout. Let’s hope this is a glimmer of good news for the unborn.
Malcolm Muggeridge wrote about British Prime Ministers and what he said applies entirely to our elected leaders:
We like to persuade ourselves that our leaders betray the trust imposed in them and distort the aspirations of those who elect them. Actually they represent us all too exactly…No one is miscast. Each leaves the country appreciably poorer and weaker, both spiritually and materially, than when he takes over, giving an extra impetus to the Gadarene rush already under way.
We seem to be viewing the events in Iran with the idea that Mr. Moussavi is the Gorbachev of Iran and will bring sweeping changes to Iran riding on the wave of the phony Obama “change” movement in the USA. As providence would have it, I went to a sweet used book store in Orange, VA this week and picked up a book called Revolutionary Iran, Challenge and Response in the Middle East by R.K. Ramazani. The book mentions Moussavi as he was Prime Minister in the early post-revolutionary years. His views may have changed between now and then, but look at what he was saying back in the day. During the days of Israel’s invasion of Lebanon, the following happened:
To stress the seriousness of their purpose in fighting against Israel in Lebanon, other Iranian leaders made many statements that fell just short of a formal declaration of war against Tel Aviv. Under the constitution, such a declaration was solely the prerogative of Khomeini. Prime Minister Musavi unfurled the banner of “victory to Al-Quds” (Jerusalem) in asking his cabinet to approve a budget for the war against Israel. He was also the first Iranian leader to say that Palestine was “a part of [the] Islamic homeland.”
Subsequently, the Iranian government also decided to make public its “plan for an Islamic front” worldwide, which, according to Mussavi, would be “followed up” by the Iranian ministry of foreign affairs, “because the fight against imperialism should take place all over the world.”
When Israel killed some Iranian Revolutionary Guards in Lebanon, Moussavi responded:
…he also predicted that Israel’s “desperate move against the Islamic Revolution” would have the effect of “the Islamization of the struggle against Zionism and imperialism in the region.” He believed that the Arab-Israeli conflict had been transformed into an Islamic-Israeli struggle involving “all Muslims against Israel.”
I also recall the Khatami years were nothing discernable changed in regard to western relations with Iran. Let’s not get too excited about this movement, as if values based on centuries of Christendom are suddenly going to take root in Iran.
A vocal segment of the so-called conservative movement are setting themselves up for a fall in a few areas. The reason for this is that they are arguing based on pragmatic results rather than first principles.
For example, many of the arguments against the stimulus plan and other economic moves made by the President come down to the fact that “it won’t work.” Never in history has something like this worked, says the Hannity’s and Limbaugh’s of the world. But what if it does work? We’re not looking at complete, Marxist central planning. The US economy has depth and resilience enough that it might self-heal and we could have GDP growth of 3-4% by 2010 or 11. What then?
It would be far better to oppose such policies because they squander money, increase state power and the threat of tyranny, and bankrupt our nation. God requires ten percent of our income, can the State require whatever it wants? Is there any point at which the State can steal, just like you and I can steal? But these are not the grounds on which I hear objections. I hear that it won’t “work.” Does killing your baby in the womb increase your ability to earn income? Can it be said to then “work”? These pragmatic arguments, divorced from God’s law and sound reasoning, have a high probability of failing.
Last week at a company lunch my highest local boss got up to make his usual announcements. He is a visionary who is well-respected within our company. So last week he chose to speak about what a great week it was, a week of hope for the entire world, a light at the end of a very long tunnel, and so forth.
I’m sure he violated all kinds of company rules about speech, but I’m not the litigious type who is going to run and report him for thought-crime. What bothers me is the appalling lack of etiquette and assumption that we all agree with him. Would I get to stand up and talk about how great a victory for the unborn it was had Senator McCain won? Of course not. And I wouldn’t anyway because in this society we’re not allowed to talk about abortion.
I wouldn’t have done it anyhow though. I feel strongly about politics, but I keep it to myself at work. I’m not going to run around boasting about victories for our side or rubbing it in the face of others. Yet, the leftist masses feel free to rage at Bush and flaunt Obama and assume that you will agree or kindly shut up with your stone-age mentality. It is really hard to escape the gloating left right now, and it presages bad things for our nation. I can see how civil wars start.