Saturday, December 7, 2019

Bunny Berigan - Russian Lullaby

A Strange Loneliness

Gail Reese, vocal

I Can't Get Started With You

Jimmy Dorsey - Clarinet Polka - And a Question Answered

Jimmy Dorsey was Charlie Parker's favorite sax player.

I heard a different version on the Polka Party this morning while I was doing my Saturday morning house cleaning and it's been going through my head all day.

And, the answer is yes.

Such A Simple Point But He Can't Master It

What a stupid ass. I am a gay man, I would only have been drafted if I had lied about being gay and I have never lied about being gay, even when I was eighteen as the Vietnam war was going on.   I never faced the possibility of being drafted.   I opposed the war even though I was not in danger of being drafted.  I never criticized people for evading the Vietnam draft EXCEPT FOR THOSE WHO FAVORED THE WAR AS THEY EVADED THE DRAFT.   You know, like Trump and Cheney and George W. Bush and William Barr.     

My comment was about those who opposed the war only on the basis of them being drafted AND WHO STOPPED OPPOSING IT WHEN THAT DANGER ENDED.  It's not a particularly complicated point, though for the stupid even a simple distinction is too much of a stretch.  

I think the ass must have spent too much of the 60s stoned or drunk or stupid, he doesn't seem to remember it.  Or maybe he's just senile as I have long suspected.  Senescence, for some it starts very young and that was a long time ago, now.   

Saturday Night Radio Drama - Katie Hims - Cops and Robbers

A dry cleaner's assistant falls for a customer but as he crosses the road outside the shop he is knocked down by a car. As she gets to know him it transpires that perhaps this was not an accident. 


Inspector - Philip Jackson 
Marion - Amanda Root 
Jonny - Nicholas Boulton 

Directed by Peter Kavanagh

I posted this one before but the link to it is dead.  It was long enough ago that I decided to post it again with a live link.  I've known so many people who made fools of themselves like this, only she learns better, in the end. 

Saturday after Advent 1

God of all mercy give us the capacity to situate ourselves in your goodness,  that we may resist every temptation to trade your goodness for other ways of security and well-being.  In his name, Amen.

Psalm 20 

Amos 5:18-27 

Jude 17-25

Matthew 22:15-22

The detractors from the distorters of faith are everywhere in these readings:

-  In the Amos text, they are those too comfortable in Zion,  with their eagerness for the coming day of reckoning when they think they will be affirmed. 

 - In the Gospel reading,  they are the Pharisees and Herodians who have no interest in serious interpretations of the tradition but only want to trick and trap Jesus.

-  In the epistle, they are "scoffers" who are propelled by interests and passions alien to faith.  They are indicted on three counts:  (1) They set up divisions, causing splits in the community.  (2) They are worldly, reasoning in pragmatic ways without allowing for the gracious slippage of grace that makes forgiveness and reconciliation possible.  (3) They are devoid of the spirit, unwilling and unable to be led beyond their own settled opinion. 

The epistle is eager that the "beloved," those seriously embedded in the gospel, should distinguish themselves from these troublemakers and practice disciplines tat will sustain their distinctiveness.  Four disciplines are commended;

-  "Build yourselves up" in a holy faith.  This includes attentiveness to apostolic teachings.

- "Pray in the Holy Spirit,"  a habit of yielding and a readiness to be led.

-  "Keep yourselves in the love of God,"  not seduced by quarrel or calculation.

-  Wait for "the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ,"  a bid for uncommon patience.

These disciplines will sustain with enough authority to convince and save others. 

Walter Brueggemann: Gift and Task

Why I Smiled When I Heard "OK Boomer"

The Altamont concert was such an irresponsible botch disorganized by some of the biggest names in rock who, after their stupidly, irresponsibly botched disorganization had the entirely predictable effect of devolving into a violent, deadly debacle, all tried to put the blame for it everywhere except on themselves.  I would like a listing of the people involved in bringing it about who took personal responsibility for it, I've never seen one, I've only seen ass-covering and putting the blame everywhere else.  

It's certain that the members of the Rolling Stones, Jefferson Airplane and The Grateful Dead and their management were in on coming up with the idea and, decidedly, not on carefully organizing it to avoid problems.  It would seem that the Jefferson Airplane and Grateful Dead might have had the absolutely and grotesquely irresponsible idea of getting the Hells Angels for security - they'd reportedly done it before - and paying them in beer.   That would be because we all know how $500 worth of beer, in 1969 dollars and prices would tend to calm a raucous situation full of drugged up, drunks, especially if the $500 worth of beer was inside the guys who were supposed to be keeping order.  I've read that they might have taken their cue from that other massive asshole of the time, Ken Kesey through his absurd romanticization of the Angels.   You know, the more I find out about the counter-culture celebrities of the 60s, the more I find out they were largely a bunch of massive assholes. 

I am rather enjoying the outraged reaction to the "OK, boomer" thing because if there is one thing my age cohort was, it was full of shit about itself.  The as seen on TV, in the media and pop-music "counter-culture" of the 60s was bull shit, the real counter culture was the Civil Rights movement and the part of the anti-war movement that wasn't just the "I don't want to get drafted" movement which is what it was for a lot of them.   Nixon's ending of the draft so he could continue the war was as brilliant as it was cynical.  I think he knew, in his foul heart, that a lot of the counter-culture types had more in common with him than they'd ever have wanted to believe.  Certainly Mick Jagger does, one of the reported reasons for the "free concert" was the criticism Mick and his then not so old Stones got for price gouging on their American tour.  As people were getting killed and stabbed, right in front of them, he and the stones did "Street Fighting Man".  He's been rakin' in the cash ever since. 

The 60s "counter culture" had several different faces, the hippy-psychedelic-flower-child one was self-indulgent and bound to go nowhere as the dolts were too drugged up and self-involved and style-based to do anything.  It was, essentially, a marketing thing.   The Marxist one was self-discrediting, as I've noted, they're the equivalent of neo-Nazis, they just liked their dictator-gangsters to be of a different sort with a somewhat different cover-story of what they were going to do with the money.  The one that would soon find its annoying and idiotic explanation in that most useless of long-on-the-friggin'-best-sellers-list Greening of America was as full of shit and maybe was even more full of itself.  

There was, as I said, a real counter-culture that was not based in any of those and was not so full of itself but that mostly consisted of hard work and wasn't associated with products and pop-culture bull shit.  It persists but it won't be featured much on TV or get concert movies made of it. 

As I mentioned, the mutual ass-covering scenarios that have been invented to explain how it happened are several and varied.  The Airplane centered scenario of how the disaster started has a couple of its members,   Kaukonen and one of the others, I can't remember off hand, saying they wanted the Stones to have their Woodstock kind of moment - which is bull shit, what they wanted was to hitch their wagon to a bigger act, 

If there is one thing that I wish had happend at Altamont it would be that Jefferson Airplane had sung that rock anthem of self-righteous idiocy,  Paul Kantner's Crown of Creation.  The clueless, egotistical, self-centered self-righteousness might have gotten it right, that the establishment was bad but what they were bad for the same reasons the commercial counter-culture was, it was vainglorious and materialistic.   There were no bigger materialists than the big name rockers.  Mick Jagger was a big fan of Maggie Thatcher just a few short years later.  

I do have a word of warning to the young people who are enjoying the "OK boomer" thing.   You want to watch out that you're not doing what the boomers did as you're making fun of us.  I might never have bought into the worst of 60s youth self-righteousness but I could have learned something from people I should have taken more seriously.  Just not the ones TV and pop-culture was telling me to listen to.   Pop culture is commercial shit about 98% of the time.  That goes for the "counter culture" stuff as sold, too. 

Update:  I probably could, if I spent a couple of days going through my boxes of long unused books, find the early second-wave feminist essays about how the 60s counter-culture was not a feminism friendly thing.  One of the essays I remember was about how when feminism came to the back-to-the-land, agriculture intending commune that the boys and not a few of the gals didn't like it one bit.  As I recall one of them quoted one of their communauts as saying "I don't want some pussy driving MY tractor." 

Second-wave feminism, especially the parts of it that avoided Marxist sidelining and involvement with other bull shit is an excellent example of non-pop-culture counter culture.  It was largely pop culture of what the flower-child marketing ploy turned into that became its most formidable foe.  And I have mentioned the ever worsening violence promoting misogyny of the central act at Altamont, The Stones in their "Black and Blue" album of a few years later.  I read Robin Morgan and Catherine Mackinnon now and, if you can wade through some of Morgan's more regrettable writing, it is as freshly radical today as so much of the 60s counter-culture stuff is as rotted as Miss Havisham's wedding cake. 

I will note that there is far less of the gay liberation stuff from the same period that has aged as well.  I think the best content in that is yet to come.  It will not be selfish and self-indulgent and it will be informed by accurate and non-ideological history. 

Friday, December 6, 2019

Pete Buttigieg Isn't Ready For The Big Time And He Looks More And More Like He Won't Ever Be

I am asked as a gay man what I think about Pete Buttigieg's non-disclosure agreement with his former employer, McKinsey & Co a shady and, it's increasingly becoming apparent, sleazy consulting firm.  Well, I think if a candidate for public office won't be totally open about his work history, he has no business asking for the public trust.  

There should be a law that anyone asking for election to federal office cannot use private non-disclosure agreements to hide parts of their past.  Private businesses are not entitled to have their private business overtake The Peoples' right to know who they're voting for. 

I haven't been a huge fan of Buttigieg's candidacy, saying from the start of it that he's far too young and inexperienced to be president and that I think he's running because in Indiana there is no path to higher office for him.  I had thought of going through a very good critique of him at the National Catholic ReporterMayor Pete brings his youth and old, tired ideas to the Democratic race, but other things came about. It's interesting to look back on it because Michael Sean Winters raised that issue in it before I saw it anywhere else. 

The fact that he is gay has given the mayor a veneer of progressivism. It is only a veneer. When will an interviewer ask him to explain what led him to work at the McKinsey & Company consulting firm, which is as deep into the establishment as one might go? What lessons did he draw from his time there? His verbiage strikes me as precisely the kind of consultant-driven p

ablum that consultants produce. But, more importantly, what about the economy and society did he learn while there? Inquiring minds want to know.

And if time working at McKinsey doesn't also make you a member of the establishment, pray tell, what does? Oh yes, a Rhodes scholarship.

The weirdest part of his candidacy, however, is that while he trumpets his youth, and traffics in the Kennedyesque idea that it is time for a new generation of Americans to take up the torch of leadership, his ideas are very old-fashioned. On his campaign website, the first item on his list for combatting poverty is expanding the earned income tax credit. The EITC has definitely been a great boon in the fight against poverty, but it was first enacted in 1975. His section on climate change lacks anything particularly innovative. And he suggests that because he served in the military, that counts as a foreign policy credential. My uncle Frank fought in the Battle of the Bulge but I would not have wanted him to be secretary of state.

I had already had grave doubts about Buttigieg over his comments in New Hampshire criticizing Democrats for not being concerned about the budget deficits, the last thing I'm going to support is a Democrat who dishonestly adopts Republican talking points which are a lie. I suspect someone told him that such talk would go over big with a New Hampshire crowd but apparently someone didn't bother to tell him that New Hampshire Democrats are not New Hampshire Republicans.  

Winters also talks about the emptiness of the "bringing America together" rhetoric:

It is also time for Americans on the left to get over the myth that some politician is going to come along and miraculously unite the country. Obama promised to do it, and didn't. Bill Clinton promised to do it, and didn't. Jimmy Carter promised to do it, and didn't. It may be what voters tell pollsters they want, but it only sets us all up for disappointment and, ultimately, disaffection from politics itself, which is why it is dangerous.

If there is one thing I don't want it's another Obama or Bill Clinton making nice with Republicans and disappointing the Democratic base.  I would certainly like to get all of those running on record on a number of loyalty issues LOYALTY TO THE DEMOCRATIC VOTERS WHOSE NOMINATION VOTES THEY ARE ASKING FOR.  If Pete Buttigieg doesn't understand that Republicans are never going to work with a Democratic President, he has disqualified himself from being the nominee of the party.  

Oddly, though I think he's clearly much smarter than Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg is reminding me of him more and more the longer this goes on.  I figured out a long time ago that Biden wasn't made of presidential timber, during his plagarism scandal.  I doubt the Mayor would do that stupid thing but he's doing a lot of the rest of why I don't want Biden to be the nominee.  Even odder, the oldest guy in the race - who I also think has no business running, Bernie Sanders, has fresher ideas than the youngest.  

Sean Michael Winters gives more reasons that this guy shouldn't get the Democratic nomination.  This is just a quick piece.  

Someone Tells Me That The Altamont Debacle Was 50 Years Ago Today

All I can say is what a bunch of monumentally stupid and irresponsible assholes everyone involved in bringing that about were.  The Stones, Jefferson Airplane, The Grateful Dead, etc.  


Rock sucks.  

It's Clear From The Reaction To What I'm Doing, Esperanto Is A Thought Crime

But the more they pressed them
Sed ju pli oni premis ilin,
sed yoo plee ON-ee PRE-mees EEL-een

the more they multiplied and florished
des pli ili multiĝis kaj kreskis;
des plee EEL-ee  mool-TEE-jees keye KRES-kees

and the Children of Israel were made fearful (to them).
kaj la Izraelidoj fariĝis teruraĵo.
keye la eez-ra-el-EED-oy fa-REE-gees ter-oor-AZJ-yo

And the Egyptians worked the Children of Israel cruelly.
Kaj la Egiptoj laborigis la Izraelidojn kruele.
keye la eg-EEP-toy la-bor-EEG-is la iz-ra-el-EED-oyn kroo-EL-e

And they embittered for them life,
Kaj ili maldolĉigis al ili la vivon
keye EEL-ee mal-dol-CHEE-gees al EEL-i la VEEV-on

with hard labor over clay and bricks,
per malfacila laboro super argilo kaj brikoj,
per mal-fats-EEL-a la-BOR-o SOO-per ar-GEE-lo keye BREEK-oy

and through all kinds of work on the field,
kaj per ĉia laboro sur la kampo,
keye per CHEE-a la-BOR-o sur la KAM-po

through all kinds of jobs,
per ĉiaj laboroj,
per CHEE-ay la-BOR-oy

that they cruelly put on them
kiujn ili kruele metis sur ilin.
KEE-oon EE-le kroo-EL-e ME-tees sur EEL-een.

A few grammar points,  there is no indefinite article in Esperanto, no word for "a" or "an" or "some" (as an indefinite article) it just does without it.

Nouns in their plain singular form all end in -o, plurals are formed by adding a "j", -oj pronounced "oy" as in "toy".

Adjectives end in "a" plurals formed in "aj" in agreement with the nouns or pronouns they modify.

The direct object of a verb adds an "n" to the noun ending, -on, ojn.

But it's not my intention to give you grammar, you can get that from the Zabreb Method lessons.

Though I have become extremely skeptical of the traditional grammar-based learning of languages for "natural" languages, having become convinced that language acquisition methods work entirely better than the way I was brought up,  the regularity of Esperanto might make it the exception to that.  With that in mind, here is the venerable The Esperanto Teacher by Helen Fryer both text and librevox (I haven't listened to all of them so I can't vouch for their quality).

The hardest part of this is typing out the pronunciation. If any Esperantists are out there, let me know when I make a mistake in that.

The Idiocy Of The College Credentialed Has Stunned So Often I'm Not Stunned By It Anymore

The college-credentialed idiots who are still gassing on about what I said don't seem to realize that to find out what I said they should read what I said.   I wouldn't be saying this except that that fact is rather hilarious.

And that they're a "brain trust" (they really do call themselves one).  

I'm not surprised, it seems to be ubiquitous among the college-credentialed of the United States - perhaps the English Speaking Peoples - that it is an unknown idea that to find out what Darwin said that ties him to the Nazi genocides you had to read what Darwin said about the salubrious and melioristic consequences of genocide.   Which he did when he wrote about the meaning of his theory of natural selection in the context of the human species, endorsing, completely what Haeckel and Galton and Greg had said in The Descent of Man.  But you'd have to read him and his citations to know that, a novel concept in late 20th and early 21st century English language untellectualism.   TV actually has done what Darwin was afraid that letting those he considered inferior living and having children would do, it has made the world mentally deficient.  



Here's the first thing that came up in my google search on that topic, a whole bunch of citations in different concordances, citing its meaning and its religious significance for Jews, both in its derivation (I believe in the Greek of the Jewish scholars of the Septuaguint) and its scriptural context. 

Which is the reason that a number of Jewish people reject the use of that term, a term for the highest form of sacrifice which was to be consumed by fire in total as an offering acceptable to God, for what the Nazis did in their genocides.  

It strikes me as a good point and the use of that term for the mass murder of Jews is decidedly bad.  It was an act of Darwinian mass murder of the kind that natural selection promises will confer heightened "fitness" to the murderers, eliminating from the human population and the future those they considered inferior and competitors for the ownership of the world,  from the disabled to the Jews, to the Poles, the Roma, etc.  That was the explicit intent of the Nazis, it had nothing to do with God.   It is a negation of everything to do with God. 

Gift and Task Friday after Advent 1 " the community of God is no free lunch or cheap ride"

Lord of justice, give the courage to face the costs that belong to faith;  give the readiness to be "properly dressed" for your great festival.  In his name,  Amen.

Psalm 16

Amos 5:1-17 

Jude 1-16

Matthew 22:1-14 

The parable of Jesus is rightly familiar to us:   A feast is offered by the king to specifically qualified guests.  When they decline the invitation, others are invited at random from the streets,  those who are less clearly "qualified" for such an invitation.   The parable (also told, somewhat differently, in Luke 14:15-24) suggests inclusiveness in the company of God, even for those who are not qualified.  Matthew, more stringently, adds a surprising conclusion to the story.   When the king comes to look at the more recently invited guests,  he is appalled that some are not appropriately dressed for the occasion;  they are roughly eliminated from the party.  Even those "unqualified" who  are belatedly invited are held to certain standards in order to join the feast.  

This twist in the parable voiced by Matthew prepares us for heavy words of judgment in all these readings.  Amos grieves over failed Israel;  but then he issues a series of imperatives commending altered conduct;  "Seek me, see the LORD, seek good, hate evil, love good establish justice."   The sequence of commands culminates with the specificity of "establish justice,"  that is, economic equity and compassion,  a practice skewed in the Israel of this time.   The words of judgment are even more severe in the Epistle of Jude concerning those who distorted faith and skewed the community in its practice. 

All these readings together attest that entry into the community of God is no free lunch or cheap ride.  Advent is a time for coming to terms with the uncompromising requirements of gospel faith that are too often treated as though they do not matter for the coming celebration.  

It's Going To Take A Lot More Than Just Telling The Truth To Save Us

Note, I have made a small edit to one sentence in what I wrote yesterday afternoon because Duncan's hind is doing what his kind of liar does, removing part of what was said from its context.   

The sentence now ends: 


the meaning of the sentence in context doesn't change, but, alas, it only means he'll just have to find another way to lie through decontextualization.   He will.  You can't protect yourself against people who have no morals among his cohort that doesn't' care about the truth.  As I pointed out, yesterday, my little problem is that he's provided a venue through which to lie with impunity.  


Much as I am on the outs with The Nation, these days, the excellent Elie Mystal had a masterful piece there about that in the context of the scumbag Jonathan Turley,   His first two sentences points out exactly the problem we face in refuting lies:

The House Judiciary Committee held something like a national teach-in on impeachment yesterday. Democrats still believe they can counter the Republican strategy of lying to their base with the somber recitation of facts.

That's the problem, Democrats have been somberly reciting facts to counter the florid, fecund lies of Republicans ever since the fucking Warren Court gave the media protection to lie with impunity in 1964, we have had fifty-five years of seeing what happens when lies are allowed free reign.   My little problem with lies allowed is nothing compared to what the free-speech-free-press absolutism of the ACLU and the Warren Court - ever expanded by the subsequent Republican-fascist courts knowing its utility to their facism - has brought us to.  Turley is the stinking dick shaped fungus that grows out of the rot that has resulted.  

It is the greatness of Elie Mystal that he sees the rot in its fullest context of educational and media and political-judicial elites and their mutual back scratching.

Turley is a paid legal analyst for CBS News. He writes a column for The Hill. And he’s still a tenured professor at George Washington Law. That he was summoned to give such plainly conflicting testimony, and that he was willing to give it even as it directly contradicted his thoughts and writings about prior impeachments, perfectly exemplifies how legal elites and legacy media have failed to meet the challenge of the Donald Trump presidency.

It’s the same failure we saw during the Brett Kavanaugh nomination, where elite legal scholars lined up to defend the “character” of a man who lied repeatedly during prior congressional testimony, finally piping down—and only at that—once the attempted rape allegation came out. It’s the same failure we see every night on television when a news organization brings on a legal pundit to surface misinformation and faulty logic in the name of presenting both sides. We see it every time a career attorney at the Department of Justice stands up in open court and argues that kidnapped children being held in cages by Trump’s government don’t need toothbrushes.

There is simply no professional or societal downside for people like Turley to make these bad, intellectually dishonest arguments. Turley himself was a random environmental law wonk before he made himself famous during the Clinton impeachment years. He made the media rounds then, calling himself a “Democrat” who was willing to speak truth to power about the “serious” nature of Clinton’s misbehavior. Back then, Turley was lauded by people like Rush Limbaugh for demanding that Clinton’s own Secret Service agents be subpoenaed to testify about what they know.

The real left, the traditional American left founded in egalitarian democracy has to open its eyes to the consequences of allowing lies flowing out of the choice to abandon morality on the basis of the ill considered words of the First Congress where they took up the Bill of Rights pretty much because Madison had been forced into promising he'd take that up in order to get Virginia to adopt his Constitution.   They didn't put much of an effort into it and wanted something so vague and general that they could manipulate to their own ends.  As we are seeing now, it has the power to destroy democracy with "freedom".   Economic elites are to be expected as a venue of corruption, that is a story as old as Genesis and Exodus, as Billie Holiday said,  "So the Bible says, and it still is news."

I'd love to go into the thinking of David Bentley Hart about our fallacious ways of thinking of freedom.  In the post-war context it turned into free to be entirely self indulgent instead of free to find out what was the right thing to do.  But that will have to wait.  In contemporary, post-war thinking, popularlized by Hollywood and hack writers, libertarian notions of freedom swamped any idea of moral obigation, especially an obligation to protect the truth,  that is the "freedom" that you'll get from the Republicans, the neo-Nazis, the Jordan Peterson Incel boys raging at women, white supremacists,  that "freedom" leads to fascism.  We really should start noticing, especially, the danger of freedom to lie and the magnified danger of lies enabled and so empowered,  Hart notes that such freedom could lead to hell. 

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Notes On The Esperanto Posts

What Montague Butler said in the introduction of his very fine Esperanto-English dictionary is true and valid,  "I attach special importance to examples from La Biblio, as Zamenhof's greatest translation and the world's best known literature."  I think that's especially true of the Eliro, the Exodus narrative of the enslavement of people and their liberation from slavery.    When Americans held in slavery asserted their right to liberation, they didn't cite the slave holders Jefferson and Madison, they didn't cite the slave-holding Hamilton, they cited the Exodus narrative and the Mosaic book.  For slaves and wage slaves the radicalism of their political economy puts the assertions of our Social Democrats and, certainly, Marxists and, infinitely more so, free market wage slavery ideologues behind.  The only thing I know of that extends that radicalism is The Gospel and the Apostolic books which are based on them.  There is nothing more radical and nothing more fitting for an American liberal political blogger posting language lessons to use for the purpose.   Several books have recently been published that note the importance of Moses to American egalitarian democracy, one notes that there are probably more citation of him in that regard than anyone else.  So I don't have the slightest hesitation to keep using it.  

I have enormous respect for the achievement of L. L. Zamenhof and his generosity in refusing to retain control of his masterpiece or, though very far from rich and always struggling to make a living, to take bribes to assert control over it in order to change it to the liking of those offering the bribes.  I can hardly think of someone who created something so significant who relinquished control of it during his lifetime. He really was a very admirable man.  Marjorie Boulton's Zamenhof: Creator of Esperanto. is probably the best biography of him. 

The one by the journalist Edmond Privat is more of a personal account of a man he knew and dearly loved.  Here's a  recording of a personal account he gave to a meeting of Esperantists in 1954.  It's extremely clear and well written but pretty advanced.   Privat's book,  Karlo was probably the most read elementary reader before Claude Piron's books took that position. It is a little old fashioned but has its charms and was quite well written.

I should mention that there is an Esperanto version of wikipedia which seems to have been a lot less ratfucked than the English one.   As well the Plena Ilustrita Vortaro, "PIV". the most complete dictionary of the language, is available online.  Though without the illustrations the print edition has. 
You'd have to read what I was reacting to to understand it.  This will be the absolute last thing I said on the subject, like all others which I've answered over and over again only to have the same lies I've answered repeated,  my blanket response will be "LOOK AT WHAT I SAID ABOUT IT IN MY ARCHIVE."  I'm not spending another post on answering the lies told about me at Duncan Black's blog.   Eschaton is a venue for lies and libel.  Duncan Black is the kind of guy who doesn't mind posting lies.  

Whiny Assed Whiner Putting The Blame Exactly In The Wrong Place

It's not my fault that that lying asshole is still libeling me at Duncan's and harshing your clique's mellow.  Duncan Black could stop it as I've been encouraging him to for seven years by banning the ass or removing his slanders.  If I were never mentioned there again and hadn't been since 2012 it would have been AOK with me and I'd never have mentioned Duncan or Baby Blue again.  You know, I was a good guest at his place, I don't think I ever used his real name until his regulars started lying about me and Duncan didn't do anything about it. I figured if he wanted to style himself "Atrios" I'd honor that.   I haven't posted anything your blog buddy tried to post here through all of 2019.  It's Duncan who posts his comments, not me.   So whine to Duncan when it happens.  He could do it if he weren't such a lazy slacker. 

Since it is insisted that I answer . . .  LOOK AT MY GODDAMNED ARCHIVE!  I've repeatedly answered all of the idiocy in the repertoire of lies that the idiots who troll me repeat no matter how many times I prove they are lies.  None more so than that one.  I don't owe Duncan Black and his regulars anything except that it was the place I really learned that when you don't believe in sin, you don't believe it's wrong to lie and when you're confronted with someone like that, as the nation and world is with Trump, Putin, the Mercers, etc. refutation isn't going to stop them from just telling the same lies over and over again.  I had a sense of that from Republican-fascists, I just never really needed to articulate it fully until I met up with it at Duncan Black's blog.   They've got far more in common with the Trumpian vulgar materialists than they would ever want anyone to notice.  The differences between that and their snooty, conceited high-end materialism is more one of style than real substance. 

That voluntary retard doesn't know the meaning of the word "centrality," believing it means possessing exclusive significance, he really doesn't believe anyone else being murdered matters, he can't pretend they appertain to him in the way he wants people to fall for.   He also doesn't understand the word "Holocaust"* being a typical, stupid TV trained American college-credentialed idiot of my age cohort.  It's a typical boomer thing, TV ruined the education of our generation as it still does. 


If his formation hadn't been in the idiocy of the 1950s-60s, when such things were dominated by ideology instead of scholarship, maybe he'd have learned that but I doubt it.  He's as big an idiot as he is a liar.  If he had paid attention as institutions such as the Holocaust Museum had been being formed, he would know that such institutions are not so stupidly and vulgarly parochial and cover all of the groups targeted for death by the Nazis.  I never denied anything about the Nazis murdering 6 Million Jews I've written about THAT FACT probably thousands of times here, in comments, many of them at Duncan's when I wasted way too much time there.  What he hates even more is that I  refuse to deny they both murdered other groups and targeted others for genocide.  He especially resents it when I point out that Hitler specifically intended to kill all the Poles as well, something which he absolutely gave orders to Nazi officers to do as they invaded Poland in 1939.  As is typical of his clique, he seems to especially hate Poles.  He had a fit when I pointed out that of all nations in the Righteous Among the Nations at Yad Vashem, Poles accounted for the largest number of such honorees. 

Duncan Black doesn't care about any of that, preferring to complain about parking in Philly and his shopping trips.  He can't possibly have fulfilled the hopes of his mentor at Media Whores Online who, I suspect seeing what comment treads could come to, decided to close her famous blog down.  Unlike him, she provided much excellent content, he lets his stable of idiots and liars provide his content along with a few non-liars who slum there.  If it were possible to sue him for libel, I would. 

*  I agree with those Jews who use the word "Shoah".  "Holocaust" is a bad word to use for what the Nazis did because a. it has religious significance for the very people the Nazis murdered, b. it implies some kind of religious sacrifice when the Nazis were carrying out a pseudo-scientific, anti-religious campaign of Darwinian slaughter in order to remove those they considered a biological danger to their made-up definitions of "Aryans" just as their genocide against the Poles was Darwinist in nature, their intention being to kill all Poles so they could steal the land they lived on.   


Holocaust, Hebrew Shoʾah (“Catastrophe”), Yiddish and Hebrew Ḥurban (“Destruction”), the systematic state-sponsored killing of six million Jewish men, women, and children and millions of others by Nazi Germany and its collaborators during World War II. 

I didn't give the word that meaning when used in that context, I just know that that's what the word means.  In order for some group to have "centrality" other groups would have to be included which aren't "central" to it.  I also know what that word means.   If the Scheisskopfs of Baby Blue don't know that, it's not my fault.   Maybe the one who inspired your whining hasn't read about it as much as others have.  I believe he's only ever skimmed one book that touches on the topic and it is certainly not central to Berlin Diary, it not having begun in earnest at the time that hardly relevant book was written. 

No, I'm Not Going To Stop With The Esperanto "Bull Shit" You Know, You're Only Encouraging Me

OK, I cut off the portion of Exodus yesterday with Pharaoh getting paranoid about the Jews - perhaps the first recorded instance in history of the kind of antisemitism so recently on full display when the Republican-fascists used the exact same "othering" and "alien" and "dual-loyalty" paranoia against Lt. Col Alexander Vindman.  As Walter Breuggemann would say, they didn't know they were quoting Pharaoh.  I'll start where I left off with the rest of that very long sentence 

so they not multiply (sounds like a Darwinist)
. . . por ke ĝi ne multiĝu, 
por ke jee ne mul-TEE-ju

for, if there happens to be a war
ĉar se okazos milito, 
char se ok-AZ-os mee-LEE-to

then also, this people will give-allegiance to our enemies
tiam ankaŭ tiu popolo aliĝos al niaj malamikoj 
TEE-am AN-kow TEE-oo po-PO-lo al-EEJ-os al NEE-aj mal-am-EEK-oy

and war against us and leave the land 
kaj militos kontraŭ ni kaj foriros el la lando. for-EER-os el la LAN-do
keye mee-LEE-tos KON-trau nee keye 

I'll break in here and say that the author of Exodus was very astute in noting that the Egyptian establishment not only wanted to use paranoia against what would be called "aliens" in Pharonic America they also wanted to keep using their labor to enrich themselves.   Makes you think of Lou Dobbs and Donald Trump using undocumented workers at their places, Trump voters would, I'd guess, have a higher rate of making money off of low-paid undocumented workers than those who support things like DACA.   The parallels don't stop there. 

And they set over them work-bosses (slave drivers, "human resources", monitor bots, etc.)
Kaj oni metis super ilin laborestrojn, 
keye O-nee MET-ees SOO-per EEL-een la-bor-EST-royn.

to press them with hard labor
por premi ilin per malfacilaj laboroj.  
por PRE-mee EEL-een per mal-fats-EEL-eye la-BOR-oj. 

and they constructed for Pharaoh storage cities Pitom and Rameses. 
Kaj ili konstruis por Faraono provizejajn urbojn Pitom kaj Rameses. 
keye EEL-ee kon-STROO-ees por fa-ra-ON-o pro-viz-AY-eyen 00R-boyn PEET-om keye ra-MEHS-es.  

Translated into contemporary American, that means "Mexico will build the wall."  

Pronunciation for English speaking Americans

Zagreb quick course for mastering the basics

Gerda Malaperis structured into an easy course with exercises and a dictionary of the vocabulary (vortaro).   I think the Esperanto on the page is fairly transparent, if you have trouble with it, let me know. 

To the snarky trolling, you know, someone trolled me over Darwinism and eugenics at a science blog once and it led to me writing scores and scores of posts documenting that.  Bullying might work to scare you off but it only encourages me.  

P.S. And I didn't even know at the time that Jeffrey Epstein and his procuress-girlfriend Ghislane Maxwell were the money and moving force behind that venue of atheist-scientistic-materialist propaganda, the "Science Blogs" at the time.  Just thought I'd throw that in your face, again.  I'd still like to compile a list of all the a-hole-a-list celebrity scientistic-atheists who were hanging with Epstein and taking a ride on his infamous jet. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Thursday after Advent 1

Great, good Lord, that we may receive you in your hidden majestic power that runs beyond our imaging.  Forgive us that we domesticate you in order to accommodate the worlds we prefer.  Give to us your new world of well-being.  In his name,  Amen. 

Psalm 18:1-20 

Amos 4:6-13 

2 Peter 3:11-18

Matthew 21:33-46 

These readings invite us to be at the pivot point in the life of the world,  poised between what is old and passing and what is new and emerging.  The hard words of prophetic speech concern the undoing and dismantling of a world that is failed.  Thus Amos can chronicle the undoing by environmental crises that leave us as desolate as Sodom and Gomorrah.   In his parable Jesus imagines that status as God's people with blessings of chosenness will be taken away,  forfeited in disobedience.  

This same moment, however, is one of radical newness.   The newness consists in new heaven and new earth, a cosmic emergence of well-being that the creator has always intended.   That new world of well-being will not be according to common expectations.  The "stone rejected" judged inadequate by conventional norms, will be Jesus,  the Messiah, who fits none of our expectations.

To stand in that vortex of divine resolve requires some intentional preparation.  The epistle urges specific disciplines of "holiness and godliness,"  being "without spot or blemish."  This means to be focused in a way very different from our careless society that does not think anything will be undone and does not anticipate any deep newness.   It is the peculiar invitation of the gospel that we may be witnesses and recipients of a turn of the ages.  Only the disciplined can perceive and receive.  Homework is required.  
Jonathan Turley, Profstitute of Law 

A Tale Told For An Idiot By A TV Lawyer Who Supports Idiots For President -What Did I Tell You Turley Is A Friggin' Jerk

Turley, the as-seen-on-TV Constitutional expert, promoter of the idiotic pseudo-scientific bull shit "neuro-law" says nothing, mis-citing history and to clinch his argument, depending, not on real history but on costume drama, A Man for All Seasons.  He quoted the made up Thomas More from a make-believe confrontation, the kind of set-up job that hagiographic bull-shit costume dramas always turn to.  I am so tired of hearing people quote that fictitious speech.  When the movie of the play was done, Pauline Kael pretty much got the measure of the movie, not More, who in reality was a far, far more complex, far far more variable person who was hardly uniformly admirable.  He had no problem serving Henry VIII who by the time of their confrontation was already a pretty blood-thirsty tyrant who got steadily worse as Trump certainly will if he is not removed from office. 

Bolt’s presentation of More’s martyrdom is so totally one-sided that we don’t even get to understand that side—as we might if it were challenged and engaged in conflict. Though the principle for which he is beheaded (his belief that the Pope represents divine law so that he is saving his soul in taking the Catholic position against Henry VIII’s marriage to Anne Boleyn) seems doubtful at best, it is given as beyond question in this film that a man should follow the dictates of his conscience. (The Afrikaners willing to die for apartheid—and they find their justifications in divine law also—could probably make as good a case.) This More is simply right and he’s smart and good and just about omniscient (he even knows his Judas); his great opponent, Henry VIII, is vain and childish, and everyone else is weak, stupid, cowardly, or corrupt. More is the only man of honor in the movie, and he’s got all the good lines.

"Vain and childish and everyone else us weak, stupid, cowardly or corrupt."

Kael couldn't have come up with a better description of the Republicans in the Executive and the Congress (who called Turley as their witness), perhaps on the Supreme Court,  rendering the as-seen-on-TV Turley's use of that threadbare speech grotesquely ironic. 

The reason that that particular part of the screen-play is reached for was also identified by the often keen-sighted Kael. 

Bolt’s More is the kind of hero we used to read about in the biographies of great men written for twelve-year-olds: the one against the many. Perhaps people think A Man for All Seasons is so great because unlike the usual movie which is aimed at 12-year-olds, it’s aimed at 12-year-old intellectuals and idealists. And if they’ve grown into compromising and unprincipled people, they can hail A Man for all Seasons as a masterpiece: heroism so remote, so totally the property of a supra-human figure, absolves them of human weakness. It becomes romantic.

Turley will, I predict, for the rest of his time on camera - I would guess that he, as "little Dersh" is greatly motivated by getting his puss on TV - play to that kind of 12-year-old mindset.   His cynicism is identical to that of Dershowitz or Giuliani and the rest of Trump's TV lawyers.  

Impeachment is not merely a legal thing, it is in service, in this case to protecting our political system.  How bad is Turley's political judgement?  He might not have supported Trump in 2016 but he did support the lunatic libertarian Gary Johnson.  Johnson might not have committed crimes but he would have been a different kind of disaster. 

Hate Mail

"Watching him (Richard Dawkins) doing philosophy is like watching a dolphin tap dance." 

David Bentley Hart quoting an agnostic friend on how incompetent The God Delusion is.

Funny, you don't hear much on the play-lefty blogs and mags and websites holding up Dawkins as a great genius and expert these days - I remember a bunch of the gals at Baby Blue swoooning over how dreamy he was as the guys drooled over Lala -  though I think that's because he exposed himself to be a massive bigot and misogynist a-hole - something I could have guessed he was from his biological determinism and Darwinian fundamentalism (Stephen J. Gould's spot-on term for it, not mine).  Those guys always end up supporting biological determinism and its most racist, sexist and economic class-based features - things built into natural selection from the start BECAUSE IT WAS IN THE ECONOMIC, ETHNIC AND FINANCIAL INTEREST OF THE SCIENTISTS WHO PUT THOSE THERE.   Natural selection is based on pseudo-science, Malthusian economics, and a wild inversion of it, as Karl Marx correctly and astutely observed, they imposed the form of the British class system on all of nature.   It has had to be constantly modified, constantly patched up for its entire history, as some from those eminent biologists who shocked their colleagues by declaring the neo-Darwinian synthesis over (the major patch-up job done in the 1930s, the biological orthodoxy we were all educated in and which is still taught, though it doesn't work) to the philosopher Thomas Nagel who stunned the already stunned by declaring in the title of a book:  Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature is Almost Certainly False.
In my long review of the literature of Darwinism - depending mostly on what the Darwinists, themselves claimed but, also, reading their scientific and philosophical critics seriously,  I'm kind of shocked that something so badly founded in evidence, to start with, and so obviously an imposed framing instead of a properly evidenced scientific law based in evidence ever became the required and viciously enforced orthodoxy of what is, in many other aspects, a well founded science.  

The paleological evidence of evolution is quite solid, as long as they don't get carried away with claims for their discoveries, so is much of the genetic support of cladistics, both among living species and those which are extinct for which there is evidence.  Natural selection is unnecessary to someone who accepts that evolution is as close to a proven fact as can be had about something so large and known from such a tiny percentage of the phenomenon of the history of life on Earth.  I think its going to remain as the enforced orthodox language of evolution but I think it's probably an illusion and one which has a history, from the start of generating political and economic theories that oppress people and has gotten millions murdered.   

Nazism was one of the largest and most significant products of Darwin's theory of natural selection, its explicit use by neo-Nazis is explict, its unadmitted use by American-fascists is evidenced though not explicitly admitted, Republican economic theory is exactly in line with the worst parts of The Descent of Man and the political activities that sprang from natural selection as soon as Thomas Huxley's repulsive essay Emancipation in Black and White (1865) in which he gleefully endorses the idea that Black People, now that they don't have economic utility to those who enslaved them would be obliterated by White People in a fight of "brains and not bites" and his colleague Francis Galton told the good news that Darwinism was for the economic elite who he awarded the prize of the most fit as he invented eugenics, a scientific endeavor which was a direct cause of The Final Solution and the other intended genocides of the Nazis.  I have documented that rather exhaustively here over the past seven or so years.  

George Darwin, Charles' son, with his endorsement, based on his father's and Galton's work derived from it,  started campaigning for laws involuntarily annulling marriages for those diagnosed by Victorian medicine as mentally ill,  Leonard Darwin campaigned for a riding in Parliament on an anti-vaxxer platform ( but only against the poor) because, as his father complained in The Descent of Man vaccination was keeping too many poor people alive,* etc. etc. etc.  Luckily, the voters thought he was a putz and didn't elect him.  Another low light was the eminent student of Galton, Karl Pearson who,in the 1925 produced "evidence" that Polish and Russian Jews were biologically inferior and should be excluded from emigrating to Britain - no doubt good news for the Nazis.  Pearson also railed against such things as the use of Cesarean section to save the lives of infants and mothers who would have died without it, he theorized that the genetics of such people would become more common and drive down the "fitness" of the general human population. 

These people are monsters who talk nice, some of them might hide it for a while, some permanently, but you can't hold with natural selection and not share in that because it's built into the theory from its Malthusian roots.   Malthus called for the poor to be left to die without help because they were excess population, which was directly what inspired this well-known seasonal passage. 

“Under the impression that they scarcely furnish Christian cheer of mind or body to the multitude,” returned the gentleman, “a few of us are endeavouring to raise a fund to buy the Poor some meat and drink, and means of warmth. We choose this time, because it is a time, of all others, when Want is keenly felt, and Abundance rejoices. What shall I put you down for?”
“Nothing!” Scrooge replied.
“You wish to be anonymous?”
“I wish to be left alone,” said Scrooge. “Since you ask me what I wish, gentlemen, that is my answer. I don’t make merry myself at Christmas and I can’t afford to make idle people merry. I help to support the establishments I have mentioned—they cost enough; and those who are badly off must go there.”
“Many can’t go there; and many would rather die.”
“If they would rather die,” said Scrooge, “they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.

Dickens got that in 1843, sixteen years before On the Origin of Species was published, twenty-nine before The Descent of Man endorsed such thinking as scientific fact.   Of course, Dickens' book was a fantasy and even if it wasn't, these guys don't believe in ghosts, never mind learning a life changing lesson from them.  I think that's got more than a little to do with their determination to uphold the most monstrous of materialistic explanations as science, so they don't have to think about God and those pesky commandments to give to the poor, the widow, the orphan and to treat the stranger among them as they would themselves.   The Golden Rule cannot be true if Darwinism is.  Darwinism is the direct negation of it as the Parson Malthus's delusion was. 

*  I should mention that during my research, based on Darwin's whining about vaccination keeping too many of those he deemed to be unfit alive, to see if Charles Darwin or, indeed, his descendants took advantage of the kind of weeding out by smallpox  for the Darwin family and have to conclude they were probably all vaccinated against it.  Why he and his eugenicist sons and grandchildren didn't benefit their own families by the weeding out they called for in the poor, is a rather obviously solved puzzle.  They never intended natural selection to apply to the likes of them.  I can review what I said about that as long as nine years ago if you insist. 

Wednesday after Advent 1

Lord of eons and immediacy,  we wait with some impatience for Christmas celebrated while our commercial world is already at its fake celebration.  Grant us patience to be geared to your time that is both slow and sure.  In his name,  Amen.  

Psalm 119:1-14

Amos 3:12

Amos 4:5 

2 Peter 3:1-10

Matthew 21:23-32 

These readings seek to find a proper place for trust amid two temptations.   On the one hand, there is the seduction of phony piety.   Jesus warns against an eager ostensive obedience without follow-through.  The prophet Amos ups the rhetoric to mock the busy routine of piety that his contemporaries  love to enact.  He sees, moreover, that such exhibitionist piety is readily linked to economic exploitation.  The Epistle reading, on the other hand, identifies an alternative temptation,  namely skepticism.   The writer points to "scoffers" who mock faith by pointing out that the promises of God are never kept and that things go on and on as if they were without interruption or change. 

Both of these temptations have to be faced with Christmas coming.   Among us, phony piety may take the form of excessive  generosity,,  of giving gifts without any real passion,  both gifts to those who need no gifts (whom we may not love too much)  and gifts to the needy that are less than serious engagement.  It is likely, however, that the temptation to skepticism about a real coming of newness is more poignant among us. The results may be just going through the motions of tired celebration.  

The Gospel reading uses the term "believe" three times, describing an act of trust that leads to repentance.  Christmas is properly not about phony piety or about skepticism; it is about change of heart and change of life that are rooted in trust in the promises of God that are sure as they are slow.

Walter Brueggemann:  Gift and Task

More Esperanto - Exodus

(There)appeared in Egypt a new king
Aperis en Egiptujo nova reĝo,
ap-PER-ees en eg-eep-OO-yo NO-va REJ-o

who didn't know Joseph
kiu ne konis Jozefon.
KEE-oo ne KON-ees yo-ZEF-on

and he said to his people
Kaj li diris al sia popolo:
keye lee DEE-rees al SI-a po-POL-o

behold(see) the people of the children-of-Israel are more numerous
Jen la popolo de la Izraelidoj estas pli multenombra
yen la po-POL-o de la eez-ra-el-EED-oy EST-as pli mul-te-NOM-bra

and more strong than us;
kaj pli forta ol ni;
keye plee FORT-a ol nee.

we must use, then, shrewdness against it,
ni uzu do ruzon kontraŭ ĝi,
no OOZ-u ROOZ-on KON-trau ji

so that it not multiply
por ke ĝi ne multiĝu,
por ke jee ne mool-TEE-ju

I decided to go to Exodus because it's more topical in the racist, anti-immigrant Trump era and the story of the Hebrews enslavement and liberation is the heart of the entire Jewish-Christian-Islamic monotheistic tradition.  I suspect the vocabulary is also more generally useful.  Here is a link to the entire Bible in Esperanto, the First Testament is all translated by L.L. Zamenhof, so the Esperanto can be taken as authoritative, the Second Testament was translated by a group of Scholars in London in the 1920s and has been evaluated as accurate.

I'll keep posting the link to the Zabreb Method material, to Gerda Malaperis and Lasu Min Paroli Plu with associated material.   Claude Piron wrote a follow up book for those two,  Ili Kaptis Elzan! which is available for free.  Piron was one of the most significant figures in Esperanto because he championed the full use of one of the most ingenious features of the language which makes learning and using it so much easier than a "natural" language, you are allowed to make words by putting together word roots and grammatical affixes, the rule being that it has to make sense, you can make a word root a noun, a verb, an adjective or adverb as needed.  It really works very well and when someone comes up with a really clever one it makes you smile instead of cringe.   That word-building feature makes it possible to enormously expand a very tiny vocabulary, something which anyone who has ever tried to learn a second language will realize is an enormous time saving.  It is something which Zamenhof noted he built into the language with that intention.  Piron has written a large number of texts, from beginner to a series of entertaining crime novels* to scholarly works using a small vocabulary used to its full. 

And there is a movie of Gerda, the pronunciation is excellent in the way that it wasn't in Incubus - though I'll say, I think the young William Shatner made a very good effort.

*  Including one with a rather pornographic title and content which I won't give just now.  Most of those are available for free at the late Claude Piron's website.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

How Much Of A Disingenuous Jerk Is Jonathan Turley? The Republican Witness In Tomorrow's Hearing?

I have known General Barr for many years in my work as both an academic and a litigator, including my representation of Barr with other former Attorneys General during the litigation leading up to the Clinton impeachment. As I have stated publicly, I can think of no person better suited to lead the Justice  department at this critical period in history. Bill Barr is a brilliant and honorable lawyer who can ensure stability and integrity in these turbulent times. While we seem to be living in an age of rage, the Barr nomination should be an opportunity for both sides to find a common ground in our commitment to the rule of law and equal justice. Those are the values that define Bill Barr and I have no doubt that those are the values that he would.

Written Statement
Professor Jonathan Turley
J.B. & Maurice C. Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law
Confirmation Hearing For Attorney General Nominee
The Honorable William Pelham Barr
United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary
United States Senate

January 16, 2019

"Common ground in our commitment to the rule of law and equal justice,"  It might not be the biggest heap of bull shit piled before a Senate Committee this year, but it's one of the most odoriferous.   

Update:  I wasn't a Turley fan years ago, I wrote about his "neuro-law" bullshit about a decade ago.   From now on I think he's going to be "Little Dersh" to me. 

The Mathematics of Evolutionary Biology - Professor Sarah Coakley

Damned electricity is wonky, again so I'll post a Gifford Lecture given by Sarah Coakley on the ongoing collapse of the basis of recent Darwinist orthodoxy, Hamiltonian "altruism," what Dawkins, Pinker, Dennett (to some extent) and, as she says, about 130 current big names in Darwinism wailed and moaned about in protest when one of the most eminent of them all,  E. O. Wilson, the founder of Sociobiology, defected from it citing its mathematical incoherency.   That collapse is one of the most interesting things in recent evolutionary biological circles, something which I am maybe a bit too proud to say, I never fell for.  I'd been under the influence of the dissident camp surrounding Science For The People, the side of Richard Lewontin and Stephen J. Gould because they made more sense and were not an obvious reversion to neo-eugenics.  I have, of course, become a total skeptic of natural selection as being more than a crude creation myth thought up by British aristocrats out of one of their more recent myths, the anti-Christianity of a state-supported Anglican devine, Malthusian economics.  It being the hegemonic ideology of biology and me being just what I am, I'm free to say that whereas it would end the career and respectability of someone respectable.  I love the freedom that comes with having no respectability to worry over. 

There have been enough of these cathedrals of materialist orthodoxy constructed, especially in biology and, especially, when they mix the science of biology with the pseudo-science of behavioral science, that rise high, are populated with clergy but which inevitably collapse as the corners that were cut in its foundation give way, that this looks very familiar with me.  Of course, in the college-credentialed idiocracy that populate the media and other fields requiring those credentials, the collapse isn't noticed until considerably after they happen.  It took well over a decade for the collapse of behaviorism and the death of B. F. Skinner to kill off that one. 

I don't know how you'll take Sarah Coakley's delivery, I will warn you that her very fine British literary style prose, the kind that is far more rapidly read and so not seeming to be as ponderous as it can in the out-loud reading of it, takes a while to get to the heart of things.   She's a very good writer and there is too much intro.   Aas Randy Rainbow said in that video I posted,  "Can you kick it up, honey.  This is TV." 

I don't hold it against her but I also have a deep prejudice against the received British style of English - but I don't hold her native tongue against her.   Here she is and very worth listening to with care,  Sarah Coakley

Christians Need A Globe Spotlight Kind Of Thing To Expose Hallelujah Hucksters Like Sekulow

The Gospel passage that Walter Brueggemann commented on for this Tuesday of Advent talks about the Temple as a center of privilege and certitude.  I couldn't help but think that Trump's as seen on FOX TV-sleazebag lawyer,  Jay Sekulow, certainly a total dirt bag most recently in the news for suborning perjury, ordering his fellow sleazebag lawyer, Michael Cohen to cover up Trump's Moscow ambitions, I couldn't help but think that after his show conversion to "evangelical christianity" Sekulow used that well known venue for hucksters and frauds to enrich himself and his family . . . 

More than 15,000 Americans were losing their jobs each day in June 2009, as the US struggled to climb out of a painful recession following its worst financial crisis in decades.

But Jay Sekulow, who is now an attorney to Donald Trump, had a private jet to finance. His law firm was expecting a $3m payday. And six-figure contracts for members of his family needed to be taken care of.

Documents obtained by the Guardian show Sekulow that month approved plans to push poor and jobless people to donate money to his Christian nonprofit, which since 2000 has steered more than $60m to Sekulow, his family and their businesses.

Telemarketers for the nonprofit, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism (Case), were instructed in contracts signed by Sekulow to urge people who pleaded poverty or said they were out of work to dig deep for a “sacrificial gift”.

“I can certainly understand how that would make it difficult for you to share a gift like that right now,” they told retirees who said they were on fixed incomes and had “no extra money” – before asking if they could spare “even $20 within the next three weeks”.

In addition to using tens of millions of dollars in donations to pay Sekulow, his wife, his sons, his brother, his sister-in-law, his niece and nephew and their firms, Case has also been used to provide a series of unusual loans and property deals to the Sekulow family.

and our voluntarily mentally retarded Constitutional-legal system allows that to be called "Christianity".  

I know, as we all do, that anyone with a vestigial brain would know that Sekulow's "christianity" is a business opportunity for a scam artist, not anything to do with the teachings of Jesus, the Law, the Prophets, the rest of the New Testament.   Yet the Constitution with it's idiotically truncated language allows Sekulow and his like to dirty the identity of Christianity with this kind of thing.

Of course, that's nothing new, that kind of thing has been going on, off and on, for as long as "christianity" has been adopted by emperors, kings, prime-ministers, presidents, etc. and used as a venue to do exactly what Jesus said not to do.  

The American Constitution will almost certainly not be changed to make it impossible for this kind of scam to not prosper, the kind of pseudo-christian scams by the likes of Jay Sekulow, Paula White, William Barr, etc. anymore than it will be changed to make the bald and blatant treason of Donald Trump and his crew officially, legally treasonous. 

The "enlightenment" secular legal order doesn't mind that kind of obvious, lying use of Christianity but Christians should not, out of some liking for nice, quiet, co-existence with it, fail to call it out in the strongest terms. Secularism, the "enlightenment" are based in materialism.  Christians shouldn't adopt their amorality, they need something like an investigative journalistic entity that can do for these kinds of things what the Globe Spotlight team did in its famous investigation of Catholic priests who molested children and the Bishops and Cardinals that covered up for them.  There is no reason to be nice about this kind of thing, Jesus wasn't nice about it, he drove the money changers out of the Temple with a whip.