Everyone gets a medal in the motte

July 23, 2017 § 55 Comments

Any concept of political freedom capable of invalidating monarchical authority is rationally incoherent.

Any concept of equal rights capable of invalidating inherited privilege is rationally incoherent.

Any concept of sola scriptura capable of invalidating the distinctive claims of Roman Catholicism is rationally incoherent.

Any concept of mercy capable of invalidating the need to cease choosing objectively immoral behaviors is rationally incoherent.

The list can continue, but take note of the pattern. Modernity is all about selectively invalidating whatever parts of reality moderns happen to subjectively find inconvenient in the Current Year.

Now suppose you are someone who finds this critique of modernity in general, or one of the particular critiques, outrageous. You are convinced (say) that your non-nominalist concept of political freedom is perfectly coherent and unequivocal. You declare victory and plant your flag in triumph.

Have you noticed anything missing in your counter-argument?

§ 55 Responses to Everyone gets a medal in the motte

  • Zippy says:

    If it helps, each “any concept” can be replaced with “any nontrivial concept”. Though it is presumably clear that only nontrivial concepts of freedom, etc are capable of performing the work of invalidating their target realities.

  • John says:

    But isn’t authority something that can have a wide application and level of density though? Or rather, something that can be both ”libertarian” in a sense and ”authoritarian” in a sense, say, or have the application of the sovereign’s decisions be on a spectrum?

    For example, you could have, say, a king or monarch who rules with a light hand, gives his subjects a lot of autonomy and is a master at herding cats.

    And you could also have a king or monarch who rules with a moderate to heavy hand, rarely gives his subjects much autonomy and is more prone to ordering the state-of-affairs amongst the commoners than the other king

    You could have a king who decides to let everyone who fails to doff their cap off to him go with a warning, maybe even multiple times in fact, before deciding that the subject has to pay a fine.

    Whilst you could also have a king who decides that the subject pay a fine right after the first failure, and even make the fine bigger than the first king’s fine to get rid of such mistakes amongst the subjects.

  • TomD says:

    The question at the root is *can authority exist at all* – liberalism says NO – only voluntary cooperation exists.

  • LarryDickson says:

    Zippy and TomD, you are both wrong. It is rationally coherent to say that only DIVINE authority can unequivocally exist. Human authority is valid only insofar as it SUBMITS to divine authority. (The fact that it can so submit without realizing it is the foundation, explicitly stated, of Romans 13.)

    Monarchical authority and inherited privilege are both off topic when questioning submission to divine authority. Zippy gives no argument for his first two assertions. At least the early moderns TRIED to argue in favor of the divine right of kings.

    I know what you are getting at – the arrogance inherent in the liberal polity – as Tolkien said, “not universal smallness and humility but universal greatness and pride.” But changing the subject to primogeniture does not get us any forrader. Heck, even popes and Holy Roman Emperors were elective . . .

  • Zippy says:

    LarryDickson:

    Monarchical authority and inherited privilege are both off topic …

    How can the actual topic of the OP be off topic?

  • Wood says:

    LarryDickson,

    Monarchical authority and inherited privilege are both off topic when questioning submission to divine authority.

    Well, in a sense that is irrelevant to what Zippy actually wrote, sure. But how does your Little House on the Prairie wonderland escape that same criticism?

  • Zippy says:

    John:

    But isn’t authority something that can have a wide application and level of density though? Or rather, something that can be both ”libertarian” in a sense and ”authoritarian” in a sense…

    I addressed this in the previous post.

  • John says:

    @Zippy,

    I did indeed read that blog post of yours. But it seems to me that the point I am making is a different one than that authority can limit itself.

    When I say that authority could govern with a light-hand and/or a hard-hand, what I am in fact saying is that authority in both paths is legitimate.

    A sovereign has just as much authority to govern with an hard-hand as he has authority to govern with a light-hand.

    Authority,in a way, comes with a prepackaged right to influence and a vast array of ways it can be exercised. What this means is that a king can decide to govern with more restraint than another king, all the while both ”libertarian” governance and ”authoritarian” governance remain perfectly fine options under his authority.

    Or am I still misunderstanding this and my claim actually still amounts to the idea that authority can limit itself?

  • Zippy says:

    John:

    If I understand you correctly you are elaborating on that other post, where I said:

    Now there is a very banal sense in which we might say, very loosely speaking, that authority can limit itself. A good leader exercises deliberation and restraint, as some of the virtues of good leadership[2]. More accurately stated, persons who hold authority can choose different ways of governing, and of course some ways of governing are better than others given different circumstances.

  • Zippy says:

    A leader choosing to exercise restraint though – or even a bias in favor of restrained leadership – is not even the same kind of thing as libertarianism.

    Consider another word: tolerance. If I am tolerating something it means by definition that I am not being compelled, either morally or materially, to tolerate it. Mandatory tolerance isn’t really tolerance at all.

    Similarly, mandatory restraint on the part of the sovereign is not really restraint at all, by definition.

  • Step2 says:

    Zippy,
    First, since you’ve yet to concede political freedom is a coherent concept at all it is unknown how you think it could invalidate anything.

    Second, I’m not sure why equal rights should not be considered an inherited privilege. It is also important to keep in mind that the Ten Commandments were fairly egalitarian for that time and place, all their surrounding neighbors had separate laws for nobility.

    Regarding the Reformation, the abuse of indulgences was at least as corrupt as allowing money changers in the Temple, so appeal to Scripture was the obvious effective counter to the practice.

  • Zippy says:

    Step2:

    I’ve explained what you claim I haven’t explained – what follows from societies adopting incoherent doctrines of justification-of-authority in general, and ones where “freedom” is one of the constituent concepts involved in particular – lots of times. So many times in fact that most of my readers are probably sick of seeing it phrased and rephrased in so many different ways and from so many different angles.

    Suppose we consider an electronic device: a random noise generator. Then suppose I show how placing that random noise generator in various circuits produces various results.

    Then suppose a critic comes along and claims that my explanation of the circuits, including my contention that the circuit in question is a random noise generator, is nonsense. It isn’t actually a random noise generator by my critic’s lights: it can’t be a random noise generator, because random noise generators only produce random noise.

    Has my critic managed to grasp what I am saying correctly, or not?

    —-

    Autocorrect fun: my phone keeps trying to change “random noise generator” into “random noose generator”. Maybe AI is a real thing after all.

  • Step2 says:

    Zippy,
    I don’t understand your explanation. Are you saying a random noise generator producing a particular result would invalidate other types of instruments? That would seem to be the comparison to the assertion your post.

  • Zippy says:

    Step2:

    I don’t understand your explanation.

    Think of the logically explosive self contradiction of liberalism as a random noise generator in your mind. You are (say) a particular circuit in the analogy.

    Filtered through your own biases and unreflective assumptions, this produces your particular interpretation of what political freedom entails. It just happens to mean what you think it ought to mean (rejection of monarchy, say), since it has passed through your filters.

    Now expand your perspective to all liberals (people with liberal commitments). Sum them all together, and see what the spectrum analyzer shows you: a Communist lobe, a Nazi lobe, a libertarian singularity, a band of weak normie interpretations which hold up as long as the substrate society is fat-dumb-happy or out on the frontier, etc etc.

    In other words, you get a picture kind of like this:

    https://zippycatholic.wordpress.com/2016/09/03/antigravity-jack-boots/

  • Alex says:

    Step2, I think Zippy has just given an example when talking to John of political freedom as rationally incoherent. If “political freedom” simply means that the sovereign (or the state or whatever name you want to use) approaches its use of authority with moderation and as a policy tries to foster subsidiarity, that is not a rationally incoherent use of “political freedom” (although, even then, this use of political freedom might in some circumstances not be the best course of action).

    Whereas if liberty means trying to rearrange our society so that a system can take all or most (or even a small part) of the authority, then it is rationally incoherent. Zippy gave a very good example a while back of this where the punishment for a cop collecting evidence while not following correct procedure was having the evidence excluded from trials (apology is I misremember anything). This clearly shows how this view in incoherent because the only way this could be coherent is if the court of law is supposed to be primarily a competitive sport and not a way to do justice. And sure enough, this is done in the name of freedom. The problem isn’t all that complicated; incoherent political freedom wants to do away with authority, except you can’t really do that. When you have a conflict of interests, it is bound to get solved in some way. If the “government” refuses to take an action, then someone will. Maybe one side will strong arm the other into accepting its authority. Or maybe both sides will begin escalating a civil conflict. Hiding behind a written document doesn’t really help, because the written document can only have power because someone (or some people) with authority gave it power first. If a written document is upheld even is situations where it clearly shouldn’t be, you still haven’t done away with authority, you have just used it badly.

    About equal rights, what do you even mean by that? Every person does have, by natural law, quite a few rights (many of which can be renegade as a way of punishing the person or by certain circumstances). That would probably be the “trivial” definition of equal rights, that is, something that is not wrong in any way, but doesn’t add anything to the table that natural law didn’t already. Outside of that, however, some rights are clearly going to belong to some people but not to others. A very simple example would be police work. The police has several rights that civilians don’t have. They can incarcerate people (at least for a little while), they can carry weapons that you probably don’t want in the hands of civilians (they might not be allowed to carry these at any time and any place, but that still would be more than a normal person can), disrespecting their authority can actually be a crime, etc. Now, these rights can’t be given to everyone, otherwise you would end up with general chaos in the best case. And you can’t take them away from the police either, otherwise you have no police (which, funny enough, would probably end up similar to the opposite case). So you can’t have “equal rights” in general.

    As for your last point, I don’t really see where you want to get. You can appeal to scripture against many abuses. One could have also appealed to the life of Saint Francis who embraced poverty, among several other possible actions. But if what you do to try to correct the problems of the Church breaks away from the Church, with authority and with logic, then you are obviously wrong.

  • LarryDickson says:

    Zippy quoted me: “Monarchical authority and inherited privilege are both off topic …” and asked: How can the actual topic of the OP be off topic?

    Insofar as the topic can be gleaned from repeated patterns of Zippy’s original post, it has to be rational incoherence in notions of authority. He seems to be referring to the idea that authority can be self-limiting, which can be critiqued as a self-refuting notion, and hence rationally incoherent. (Clearly, if valid authority has to be based on divine authority, that eliminates this problem.) But changing the subject to monarchy and primogeniture is irrelevant to this topic. You can have an inherited monarchical authority, or you can have an elective monarchy, or you can have an Athenian democracy, or you can have Judges of Israel authority (changed to royal authority by wrongheaded plea of the elders of Israel: see 1 Samuel chapter 8), or even a sacred constitution. All have their place.

    A nice fictional example is in The Lord of the Rings. Tolkien was a fierce anti-modernist and his art always leads to wise reflections (if treated fairly, unlike the Acton Institute’s The Hobbit Party). Of the Ordering of the Shire refers to essential laws attributed to the long-gone king, “The Rules (as they said), both ancient and just.” Also there is the hereditary Thainship, “referring to the head of the family as The Took, and . . . adding to his name, if required, a number”; and the “real official” is “the Mayor of Michel Delving (or of the Shire), who was elected every seven years at the Free Fair . . .”

    Thus, a sacred constitution, a hereditary monarchy, and Athenian democracy, side by side. And which proved legitimate in the crisis? ALL OF THEM! Human authority is ad hoc.

  • Zippy says:

    LarryDickson:

    Did you have something to say about the OP?

  • Zippy says:

    I generally write my posts to address one or two specific, focused points at a time.

    Folks who want to write their own meandering rants are of course welcome to publish those rants on one of the countless numbers of free blogging platforms.

    Or even in the comboxes here, I suppose, within limits. I’m not exactly heavy-handed with comment moderation. At least I don’t think so, though I suppose others are in a better position to judge that objectively than I.

    But in any case, for me to read and respond to comments on specific posts it helps for those comments to at least have something to do with the specific points made in the blog post to which those comments are attached. Comments that read as though the commenter didn’t even bother to read the OP aren’t likely to elicit much consideration from me.

    The OP (like most of my posts, with the occasional exception of a sweeping rant) makes a very specific point. Perhaps attempting to paraphrase that specific point accurately before commenting would be a helpful exercise for some readers.

  • glosoli says:

    It’s funny how Jesus relied solely on the teachings and prophesies of the Old Testament, and criticised the Pharisees for their holier-than-thou attitude, whilst having turned away from God. Apart from the Old Testament, He had no *authority* as defined by Zippy.

    No doubt Catholics would react to Jesus in much the same way as the Pharisees, or tell Him He’s incoherent: No authority Jesus, we’re the church, look at our history and traditions, and our important priests.

    Moses too, Abraham, Israel. Without a church as authority, yet chosen by God.

    If it weren’t so serious, it’d be amusing. But it’s incoherent.

  • Silly Interloper says:

    It’s funny how Jesus relied solely on the teachings and prophesies of the Old Testament,

    Says who? Jesus was God with authority over and above the Old Testament, and although he referred to the Old Testament scriptures for teaching, he never said anything about it being a “sole authority.”

    Besides, I showed you the Bible verse in the previous thread where Jesus also recognized the authority of the Pharisees in the seat of Moses, even while he criticized them. You need that quote again?

    No doubt Catholics would react to Jesus in much the same way as the Pharisees,

    You’ve shown deep ignorance about the Catholic Church in previous posts–what makes you think you aren’t being ignorant here? I find it far more likely that Jesus would confront you, and you would reject him because he did not fit the current interpretation from which you get your jollies. The Church is what it is because of obedience to Christ.

    I would say “nice try,” but it isn’t even that.

  • Advenedizo says:

    @glosoli

    I do not know what Bible you are reading, but Jesus Christ was not relaying on the old testament, he was relaying on His own knowledge of God.

    Go back and read some more.

  • Advenedizo says:

    @glosoli

    If you think a little is kind of how the Catholic Church works. She knows what is correct, and then goes into the Bible for proof, not the other way around.

  • Zippy says:

    glosoli:

    Apart from the Old Testament, He had no *authority* as defined by Zippy.

    God had/has no capacity to issue morally binding commands?

  • Advenedizo says:

    Regarding the post, for us a little hard headed. What is missing in the counter argument?

  • Zippy says:

    Addressing the actual point made in the OP is something that critics might consider.

  • Zippy says:

    Advenedizo:

    What is missing in the counter argument?

    What is missing is establishing the capacity to actually accomplish what the principle supposedly accomplishes: what it is employed in rhetoric to accomplish.

    These modernist doctrines or principles are set up as oppositions: freedom vs rule by a monarch, equality versus aristocratic titles and privilege, sola scriptura vs distinctively Catholic doctrine and practice, etc.

    What is missing is a demonstration that the doctrine nontrivially and non-arbitrarily accomplishes what the rhetoric that builds upon it assumes that it accomplishes, without contradicting itself.

    The OP is another way of approaching these equivocal doctrines: “feminism is just the doctrine that women are people too” fails to accomplish the purpose for which the doctrine of feminism is asserted in the first place, that is, rejection of patriarchy and invalidation of distinctively male authority.

    So when that motte-conception of feminism (or any of these motte-conceptions of these doctrines of modernity) is asserted, I’m happy
    to pin a medal on the guy asserting it for accomplishing nothing real.

    Another example is “consent of the governed”. The motte conception – which is perfectly coherent – is that no sovereign rules without the support of enough of his subjects. But this is as true in non-liberal polities as it is in liberal polities. It fails to make the very distinction it is employed to justify in the first place.

    It is the mind trap which imprisons right liberals.

  • […] from bad, distinctively regressive societies.  The whole point of these modernist doctrines is to set up oppositions: freedom versus rule by a monarch, equality versus aristocratic titles and privilege, sola […]

  • Step2 says:

    Zippy
    In other words, you get a picture kind of like this:

    A diagram which does not address monarchy cannot invalidate monarchy. Unless your diagram assumes that the entirety of the political universe is the gravity well of liberalism, which is an assumption you explicitly claim is false. Moreover, granting for the sake of argument the particular limits and labels of your diagram I don’t consider a black hole to be rationally incoherent. It has a counter-intuitive structure and operation to it, but those are not incoherent.

    Alex,
    The problem isn’t all that complicated; incoherent political freedom wants to do away with authority, except you can’t really do that.

    There is a significant difference between authority based on an office, especially a temporary elected office, and inherited authority based on a bloodline.

    Now, these rights can’t be given to everyone, otherwise you would end up with general chaos in the best case. And you can’t take them away from the police either, otherwise you have no police (which, funny enough, would probably end up similar to the opposite case).

    Those rights given to officers of the law are supposed to be given on the basis of merit, and those rights can and should be immediately taken away from individual officers when they egregiously abuse them.

  • Zippy says:

    Step2:

    Moreover, granting for the sake of argument the particular limits and labels of your diagram I don’t consider a black hole to be rationally incoherent. It has a counter-intuitive structure and operation to it, but those are not incoherent.

    It might help your grasp of the analogy if you assigned the terms to their proper object. Liberalism is the singularity , not the black hole in its entirety.

    Also, monarchy is a structure not a political philosophy — another oft repeated distinction you have to grasp in order to understand my understanding.

  • TomD says:

    The Pope is a monarch; there are no bloodlines there.

    “immediately taken away from individual officers when they egregiously abuse them” – if this was Wikipedia, I’d be adding a “by whom?” to this.

  • Alex says:

    There is a significant difference between authority based on an office, especially a temporary elected office, and inherited authority based on a bloodline.

    I am not very sure what you are trying to argue. I am genuinely sorry, conversations on this site frequently simply go over my head and I don’t understand where people arguing are coming from until much farther down the conversation where I finally understand what someone meant by what they said.

    Are you trying to say that authority should never be assigned by birth or remain for life? If so, what does this have to do with the immediate issue (that is, whether any notion of political freedom is trivial or contradictory)? Are you agreeing with me but arguing that even if it is contradictory, political freedom brought about something positive? Are you trying to say that inherited authority is essentially different from elected authority that any discussion about authority needs to consider them separately? I am myself a monarchist, but in the above text I wasn’t even trying to consider the kind of authority, but just consider the issue of authority itself.

    Those rights given to officers of the law are supposed to be given on the basis of merit, and those rights can and should be immediately taken away from individual officers when they egregiously abuse them.

    I don’t see how any of this would invalidate what I said. Still, you will need people to have rights that others don’t. But I think it might be interesting to note that the very conditions you put up require even more unequal rights. If officers misusing their authority need to lose it, then you need someone with the authority to judge that. You need someone (whether a single person or a group of people) who has the authority to go over any cases where an officer might have misused his authority and determine if that really was the case, and what kind of punishment should be given to them.

  • glosoli says:

    My comment above was spot on.

    You’ve all ignored my salient points, all of them.
    To repeat: Jesus did not rely on the authority of the church as it existed at that time. He sought to start a new Church and bring us back to God. And they killed him for his attack on their schemes.

    Your position on Catholic authority is indefensible.
    Note I am not arguing for scripture as being the sole authority.

    Did the patriarchs have a grand authoritative church structure to refer to?
    No.
    Did the very apostles that built our Christian faith have the authority of the Pharisees and their church? No.

    They relied on Gods word, written and spoken, and built Christianity from that.

    You all ignore the facts of history.

    Hence, it demonstrates the incoherence of your loyalty to a failed Catholic structure, which was captured and perverted by Rome very early on, and has been heading the wrong way ever since.

    If you want to reply to my comments, please address my points above. Thanks.

  • Zippy says:

    glosoli:

    Note I am not arguing for scripture as being the sole authority.

    I wouldn’t characterize what you are doing as arguing at all, really.

  • glosoli says:

    Show me where I err then please brother, or accept that you err.

  • Zippy says:

    glosoli:

    If you can be convinced by an argument – even a good one – then you don’t have faith. The issue isn’t argument (which is not a concession that what you are doing rises to the level of argument). It is faith.

    And faith is a question of who you trust.

    If you trust only yourself then you end up trusting only your own interpretations of history and Scripture, no matter how tortured those are when measured against an objective reality about which you are grossly ignorant.

    If you trust in God Who Reveals, God who made the world and everything in it, then you’ll trust all that He has left you, however superficially counterintuitive and humanly messy those things may seem to you in your epistemic solipsism.

    Of course the truth and reason are consistent with trusting God (faith): they are, contrary to the contentions of Protestant rebels like “reason is a whore” Luther, in perfect harmony.

    Relevant:
    https://zippycatholic.wordpress.com/2005/05/11/salvation-by-what/

  • glosoli says:

    Undoubtedly you have faith.
    So do the Jews.
    So do the Moslems.

    None of you really know much about God though. You all want your earthly worries eased by *powers*, despite God telling us we only need Him, not Kings, not governments, not church authorities.

    I waste my time commenting here on this issue, and you make false claims about me above (I don’t only trust myself).

    S’funny how you and Barnhardt are so alike, the same blind spot. I am certain if God himself came down again to start a fresh church, you would deny Him, and stick with the perversion Rome built for you.

    Because you think you know better.

  • Silly Interloper says:

    My comment above was spot on.

    Glosoli, let me attempt to show you just how silly you look to us. Not to be mean, but—hopefully—to be instructive to you.

    You say:
    You’ve all ignored my salient points, all of them.

    You don’t exhibit the least big rigor for your own words, and you avoid responsibility for what you say, pretending that those who respond to it are avoiding you. But we are clearly not.

    Example #1—you say:
    To repeat: Jesus did not rely on the authority of the church as it existed at that time. He sought to start a new Church and bring us back to God. And they killed him for his attack on their schemes.

    With the words above, you have completely changed the emphasis of your words. Here’s what you wrote previously:
    It’s funny how Jesus relied solely on the teachings and prophesies of the Old Testament,

    You went from “Jesus relied solely on the teachings and prophesies of the Old Testament”, which we directly refuted, to “Jesus didn’t rely upon the church” in this latest post. Instead of facing the refutation, you pretend like we didn’t address your point and change it.

    This might be one of three things—1) you are intentionally misdirecting in a very dishonest way, 2) you simply don’t have the mental capacity to follow through on your own thoughts adequately, or 3) you are being excessively careless in your arrogance and zeal to outwit your betters.

    Example #2:
    In your previous post you continued, … and [Jesus] criticised the Pharisees for their holier-than-thou attitude, whilst having turned away from God.

    We addressed that directly, reminding you that in spite of Jesus’s criticism of the Pharisees, he commanded his followers to obey them because there authority was legitimate.

    Here’s the pertinent Bible verse again:
    Matthew 23 says: Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: “The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. So you must be careful to do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach.”

    But now you change the wording and say “Jesus did not rely upon the authority…” You say something entirely different, and complain because we don’t handle your “salient” points.

    Your argumentation—regardless of anything else—is proving to be incoherent, and it makes you look very dumb, very ignorant, and very unwise.

    (By the way, Glosoli, did you see the Bible verses about Mary I presented to you in the previous thread? Worth a look if you haven’t.)

    You wrote: Your position on Catholic authority is indefensible.

    We have proven this wrong with several defenses, but, let’s face it—if it was really indefensible, you shouldn’t have any trouble refuting it soundly. But—as we can all see—you haven’t. Not a scrap of real evidence.

    You wrote:
    Did the patriarchs have a grand authoritative church structure to refer to?
    No.

    What is your evidence of this? If by “patriarchs” you mean the Apostles—they didn’t “have” an authoritative church structure, they *were* that authoritative structures, given powers, authorities, and missions directly from Christ, and their authoritative acts throughout the Bible are indicative of it. The Catholic and Orthodox Churches are the direct result of the Apostles appointing offices within the Church that still exist today. That’s both biblical and historic. (In the Bible, they even had to choose a new apostle to replace Judas, remember?)

    You wrote:
    Did the very apostles that built our Christian faith have the authority of the Pharisees and their church? No.

    Again, we keep offering you evidence, and you have provided no evidence for the above statements. Not a scrap. You have a strange idea of what is defensible and what is not.

    You wrote:
    They relied on Gods word, written and spoken, and built Christianity from that.

    And who was in charge of safeguarding that spoken word? (Spoken word is one form of *tradition*, by the way.) We know for a fact that many—even in the first century—attempted to corrupt the word. What authority determined which words were spoken words of Christ and which were not? What authority determined which of the written words were authentic scripture?

    If there was no authority, than you have no grounds for rejecting any of the false gospels or anything anyone says is the “spoken word” of Christianity. Your rejection of authority is a recipe for chaos, confusion, and lies.

    Do you realize just how *indefensible* that is?

    Also—what evidence do you have that the spoken word did not include commands and mandates for forming church authority? One scrap of evidence, please.

    You all ignore the facts of history.

    LOL. Spoken from the man who makes things up and provides no historic evidence.

    Hence, it demonstrates the incoherence of your loyalty to a failed Catholic structure,

    I don’t think incoherence means what you think it does.

    …which was captured and perverted by Rome very early on, and has been heading the wrong way ever since.

    More gratuitous statements with no evidence.

    You wrote:
    If you want to reply to my comments, please address my points above. Thanks.

    Lol. Now—after reading the above, can you see how much of a jackass you come across as when you say that?

    If you want to know my impression of you, go to this video and start it at minute 1:44, then play until 1:53 or so. In case you aren’t sure—you are the short one in black.

  • Silly Interloper says:

    Because you think you know better.

    It seems to me that is the sole basis of your argument. You (an admitted novice) think you know better, and it angers you that anyone else would dare think otherwise. So, in your incoherent and lost little mind, you aggrandize yourself above everyone else and condemn everyone else without substance or evidence, in the meanwhile avoiding responsibility for your own words.

    Check your ego, dude. It does you no favors.

    It’s pretty pathetic, really.

  • Zippy says:

    glosoli:

    S’funny how you and Barnhardt are so alike …

    Now I am insulted. Ann Barnhardt is – and has been at least since she quit her Big Job in finance in ’08 or ’09 and became a viral Internet sensation among gullible and financially ignorant conservatives – a silly little ragepuffmuffin; and people who take her commentary on much of anything seriously don’t do themselves any credit.

  • Wood says:

    S’funny how you and Barnhardt are so alike

    How did I miss this comment?!? I just choked on my morning coffee laughing at this! glosoli, I get you think Catholics are all pagan and whatnot, but, friend, PLEASE read a little bit of the sources you’re referencing in order to understand how off base you are with some of your criticisms.

  • Terry Morris says:

    glosoli, an amusing anecdote for your edification (true story!):

    I was once in attendance at a wedding wherein a professional photographer from Tulsa, Ok was hired to do the photography. At one point prior to the bride’s grand entrance, the photographer came to me very excitedly saying “you gotta see this, man, it’s unbelievable!” He turned his camera around to show me the LCD screen, on which was a picture of yours truly with a perfect “halo” superimposed directly above my head. In the background was captured one of the (several) banners posted on the walls of the “sanctuary” which read, “Let’s Have Chhhuuurrrccchhh!!!” The halo, though, was of course what he wanted me to see.

    Upon studying the photo a bit I simply said to the guy, with the most serious demeanor and the straightest face you can imagine, “that [halo] is there because I’m the only righteous sumbitch in this ‘church’.” He got the joke, and laughed profusely. My wife got the joke, but didn’t think it quite as funny as he. 🙂

  • TomD says:

    “Let’s Have Chhhuuurrrccchhh!!!” sounds like the theme of the World Wrestling Church.

  • donnie says:

    “Let’s Have Chhhuuurrrccchhh!!!” sounds like the theme of the World Wrestling Church.

    Sounds like Terry went to this Church:

  • glosoli says:

    @silly interloper,

    I was in a rush when I typed that comment, so I accept my language was sloppy.

    Would you describe yourself as a hypocrite? Probably not.

    However, the NIV title of the chapter of Matthew 23 that you quoted is: ‘A warning against hypocrisy’. Here’s the full text (KJV version):

    ‘1Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples, 2Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat: 3All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not. 4For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. 5But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, 6And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, 7And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi. 8But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. 9And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. 10Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. 11But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. 12And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

    13But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in. 14Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.

    15Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

    16Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor! 17Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold? 18And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty. 19Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift? 20Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon. 21And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein. 22And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon.

    23Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. 24Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.

    25Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. 26Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.

    27Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. 28Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.

    29Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous, 30And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. 31Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets. 32Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers. 33Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?

    34Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city: 35That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar. 36Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.’

    Just for starters, we all can agree Catholics call their priests and the Pope ‘Father’. Woe to you, you are hypocrites. Selectively quoting scripture often reveals the quoter’s character, and very often bites them. That’s one reason why I love the bible, and hate liars.

    I could equate so many Catholic practices to the other warnings Christ gave to the Pharisees above. Like them, you would hypocritically deny them, saying ‘We do it according to the Law’, and ‘we have authority’. For now maybe.

    So, although Jesus did say to obey them, within a very short period He has succeeded in tearing their authority to shreds, and a new church was built from scratch by the Apostles. And where is their Temple? To this day, it is destroyed. That’ll be the Vatican one day, in the not too distant future.

    I repeat: if Jesus cam back today and told the Catholic church and its followers that they are making the same mistake, you would all, to a man, deny Him. You ignore the hundreds of examples over the millennia of how bad Popes have been, how bad some practices have been, and all of the other examples we Protestants raise. You just say ‘Oh, it’s not the church, it’s just some bad apples’. You ignore the flow of the tide, which is ongoing. You are hypocrites.

    @zippy, it may have been on another thread, but you likened me to an 8 year old in terms of knowledge and naivete. I accept that description. I am also like the 8 year old in that I have no pre-determined biases, and I speak and describe what I see. Much like the emperor having no clothes.

    Ann Barnhardt at least recognises that the Catholic church can now only be rescued by an act of God, the filth in control have no earthly opponents that will stop them. I agree with her, but do not expect the Catholic church to survive at all, rather God will find a way for a remnant to rebuild His church (assuming these are not end times). So, time is against you, despite your confidence and hypocrisy, events will destroy Catholicism eventually, and good riddance to it.

  • Zippy says:

    glosoli:

    I could equate so many Catholic practices to the other warnings Christ gave to the Pharisees above.

    At least you recognize that it is you doing the equating, not the text of Scripture doing the equating. That is the beginning of an understanding.

    Ann Barnhardt at least recognises that the Catholic church can now only be rescued by an act of God

    When has that ever not been the case?

    So, time is against you, despite your confidence and hypocrisy, events will destroy Catholicism eventually, and good riddance to it.

    People have been saying that kind of thing for a very, very long time. For so long, and under so many different circumstances that make it seem quite plausible, that one is tempted to conclude that the fact that Church exists at all can only be an act of Divine Providence.

  • glosoli says:

    The fact that the church exists is because (for the time being) the lord of lies has dominion and influence here on earth, and (most) men are so easily duped. The Reformation and the growth of alternatives to Catholicism shows that God is still able to find those who seek Him.

    It was the 8 year old boy laughing at the emperor, was he wrong to identify the truth and highlight it in public? I’m sure the statute books and the official palace news at the time were full of praise of the emperor’s fine attire. The text of scripture highlights the hypocrisy of your faith. You ignore (as usual) the fact you call priests and the pope ‘father’. That makes you look like an emperor with no clothes you know. Just for once, will anyone on this blog put their hands up and admit that fact? We shall see, I guess it’s hard for men to admit to perpetually LITERALLY DOING THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT CHRIST WARNED ABOUT WHILST STILL DOING IT. Give it a go, it might be a first step toward God.

    Events will show whether your precious Catholic church is saved by God, or whether it is destroyed. Hopefully, imminent destruction. More likely, satan will attempt to merge the ‘religions of the book’ and re-build the temple. I wonder if that aberration would be enough for you to see the light?

  • Zippy says:

    glosoli:

    You can use Google to look up all the usual arguments about the meanings of the passages you cite. When Paul calls himself the spiritual father of the Corinthians, is he disobeying Jesus’ command? If he is, then how much of the New Testament involves Paul making erroneous statements?

    In fact, I insist that if you are going to persist in arguing this here, your arguments need to demonstrate at least rudimentary familiarity with all of the usual apologetic point-counterpoint which has been going on for centuries. Do a little work and research before you start typing — it isn’t hard with Google, and these days there really isn’t any excuse for wading in without at least boning up on a subject a little first. Or start a blog of your own, it is free and not difficult, if you want to continue to talk about subjects and centuries-old disputations about which you obviously haven’t done the slightest due diligence.

  • glosoli says:

    [This comment failed in the criteria I set for further commenting privileges. To repeat, the comment must demonstrate an at least minimal level of comprehension of easily Googled counterpoints in order to be approved. –Z]

  • donnie says:

    glosoli,

    Maybe you’re not aware, but Heaven hasn’t exactly been silent on the question of the Catholic Faith’s veracity. Far from it.

    For starters, there have been an absolute deluge of new saints in recent years. Now, admittedly, much of this is due to Pope John Paul II’s alteration of the canonization process, a change that some Catholics (myself included) have criticized for various reasons. But regardless of the prudence or otherwise of that pope’s decision, the necessity of thoroughly vetted miracles still remains. This means, in case you’re not familiar with the process, that each would-be Saint or Blessed must have at least one thoroughly vetted and verified miracle attributed to their intercession after their death (the standard rule is one miracle for beatification as Blessed, two miracles for canonization as a Saint). That so many of these miraculous events have passed the Vatican’s rigorous muster in recent years is a sure sign of God’s continued Providence over His Church. Every single canonization and beatification is an extraordinary affirmation and approval direct from Heaven of that person’s life and faith, thanks to the required miracles.

    Nor has Christ’s mother, whom you insist on maligning, been silent either. Although there are plenty of alleged apparitions of the Virgin Mary that are, shall we say, dubious at best (e.g. Medjugorje) Church authorities have approved those of Ile Bouchard, France, Kibeho, Rwanda, Akita, Japan, San Nicolas, Argentina, and a number of others in recent years (I encourage you to Google each one of these). Of course, as I’ve already alluded to, there are any number of claimed Marian apparitions at any time, the Church approves of few and condemns many following rigorous investigation of each alleged event. But most of the recent approved apparitions include messages from the Virgin Mary that call back to her message to the shepherd children at Fatima, Portugal, exactly 100 years ago. That message, taken in its totality, contained warnings of what the world, including the Church, would suffer as a result of our many sins, the chastisements we would collectively suffer if we did not swiftly repent (many of these having already come to pass in the century since), and how, through all of this, we can each save our own souls and the souls of others.

    And before you attempt to write all of these off as delusions and fairy-tales, let me remind you: investigative technology is advancing further every day. And while it has proved useful in debunking many dubious claims it has actually proved just as useful in affirming many of the most astounding signs from Heaven. See here, to see what modern instruments have been able to glean from the miraculous tilma of St. Juan Diego. Or here, to learn that the Shroud of Turin and the Sudarium of Oviedo, allegedly the burial cloths of Our Lord, have been found to contain bloodstains of the same type – AB. This is especially interesting, as it is the same blood type found in the Eucharistic Miracle of Laciano. Now if that event, which involved the transformation of bread and wine into real, literal human blood and flesh (discovered later to be cardiac tissue) happened only once in the entire history of the Church, it would rank as one of the most awe-inspiring events of the last two millennia. But guess what! It’s reported to have happened again five times in the last 25 years!

    So what can we make of all of this? Well, they are, I think, one of God’s greatest gifts to His people in this day and age. Because it means that despite all of the unbelief, all of the hatred and apostasy from both outside the Church and within it’s very own ranks, Our Lord still confirms His work and teachings as once He did on the roads of Galilee and Judaea. And these signs all point to one very simple truth of the utmost importance: the Catholic Faith is literally and completely true.

    Of course, none of these miracles need to be authentic for the Catholic Faith to be true. If all of the alleged miracles were clever hoaxes, and if all of the heavenly apparitions were delusions and frauds, that would not affect the substance of the Faith one iota. No Catholic is required to believe in any of the above mentioned miracles if they do not find them personally convincing. A Catholic need only to do as the early Christians did: “persevere in the doctrine of the Apostles” (Acts 2:42) as handed down to us in Holy Scripture and in the teachings and traditions of the Apostle’s and their successors.

    But if any of these miracles are authentic, even just one of them, then every creed that is not Catholic comes crashing to the ground. If just one miracle at the intercession of a Saint in heaven actually occurs, then the Catholic Faith is confirmed. If just one of the many alleged apparitions of the Virgin Mary actually happened, then the Catholic Faith is true. If just one Eucharistic miracle ever actually occurred, then this debate is over. For God, in His infinite wisdom, has settled this disagreement for us.

  • Silly Interloper says:

    I was in a rush when I typed that comment, so I accept my language was sloppy.

    And, yet, your argumentation does not improve. First you go into a tizzy because you thought we didn’t address your points, but now that you have admitted it was your fault and that we did, in fact, address your points, you completely avoid the refutations and send up a smoke screen with this accusation of hypocrisy regarding fatherhood.

    If you can’t stay on point, you look like an idiot. In spite of everything else Christ said in Matthew 23, he *STILL* recognized the Pharisees’ authority and commanded his followers to obey them. WHY HAVE YOU NOT ADDRESSED THIS POINT? Nothing in the rest of the chapter changes it. You erroneously criticize us for not addressing your points, and now you completely avoid the primary point that refutes your position. Now—who is acting the hypocrite?

    You are playing fast and free with accusations to distract from the fact that every single thing you throw our way gets refuted, and that is very dishonest. Guess what? I’m not distracted. Answer the point, or admit that you can’t.

    Zippy skewered your attempt at bringing up the “father” canard when he wrote: “When Paul calls himself the spiritual father of the Corinthians, is he disobeying Jesus’ command? If he is, then how much of the New Testament involves Paul making erroneous statements?”

    Yeah—you’re toast. But what are you going to do now? Bring up another barrage of unsubstantiated crap while avoiding Paul’s words in scripture? Because that is what we are coming to expect from you. To put it another way—we’ve come to expect that you will use dishonest ploys to avoid points that are inconvenient to you and to avoid having to face the truth. By doing so, you are an ally of falsehood, and you are making a fool of yourself.

    (By the way, there are many things wrong with your point. In the same verse it also says not to call anyone teacher/rabbi. Does that mean we can’t ever call anyone a teacher? Of course not–which means the intended message was completely lost on you.)

    I repeat: if Jesus cam back today and told the Catholic church and its followers that they are making the same mistake, you would all, to a man, deny Him.

    You have no clue what any given individual would do, and it is laughable that you would pretend to have such insight. Besides which, you are just getting your jollies by fantasizing about Jesus coming to us and telling us we are “oh, so wrong” while Dark Helmet Glosoli is supreme and perfect in his knowledge of him. It is the fantasy of an arrogant child and has no bearing upon reality. It’s pathetic, really.

  • Zippy says:

    FYI, glosoli is now in moderation; and given the attempted posts so far it seems doubtful he is going to meet the bar I set for continued commenting privileges. However, this also means he is unlikely to be able to defend himself, so it is probably best/fairest to just let it drop.

  • itascriptaest says:

    The fact that the church exists is because (for the time being) the lord of lies has dominion and influence here on earth, and (most) men are so easily duped.

    Am I the only one that thinks narratives like this portray God as especially cruel? I mean if Sola Scriptura is true would it not have made more sense for Jesus to do what Muhammad or Joesph Smith did and actually dictate and then officially promulgate a written text? Then there is the question of why would God wait 1500 years to reatablish his church. Why is there a multiplicity of conflicting Protestant sects?
    I know the easy response to this is that God’s ways are not our own, but it seems like the reconstructionist narratives really cheapen the Incarnation as a central event.

  • […] as opposed to illiberal regimes which lack this moral grounding. Consent of the governed is what morally distinguishes liberal regimes from illiberal […]

  • […] joined together by walls of irony resting on a foundation of bones, walls built and maintained by slaves chanting the mantra of […]

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