Intelligent Design

Critical Theory is Certainly Correct

Spread the love

Indeed, it is more than merely true; it is an inexorable logical certainty if the premises of the theorists are true.  That is the question I will address in this post.

Before we go on, we need to understand what ‘critical theory’ is.  Wikipedia has a good summary

In sociology and political philosophy, the term Critical Theory describes the Western-Marxist philosophy of the Frankfurt School, which was developed in Germany in the 1930s and draws on the ideas of Karl Marx and Sigmund Freud. . . . Postmodern critical theory analyzes the fragmentation of cultural identities in order to challenge modernist-era constructs such as metanarratives, rationality, and universal truths, while politicizing social problems ‘by situating them in historical and cultural contexts, to implicate themselves in the process of collecting and analyzing data, and to relativize their findings.’

Allow me to boil this down.  Critical theory is applied metaphysical materialism.  Materialism posits that the physical is all there is.  Its central premise is this:  In the beginning there were particles, and the particles were in motion, and in the entire universe there is and never has been and never will be anything other than particles in motion.  This means that human beings are not special.  You and your family and your friends are also merely particles in motion, reducible to the chemicals that make up your bodies.  Humans are clever hairless apes with no more ultimate significance than rocks.  Yes, they have come up with this thing called “morality.”  But morality is an illusion foisted on us by material evolutionary forces because it gives us a reproductive advantage.  Morality in any objective transcendent sense of the word not only does not exist, it cannot exist.  There are no moral or immoral rocks.  And humans – in their essence – are in the same category as rocks.  Both rocks and humans are mere amalgamations of burnt out star dust. 

If this is true, it has profound implications for just about everything.  One of those implications is that there are no universal truths guiding our relations in society.  There is only power and those who have it and those who do not.  This is why progressives, who many times take their cue from critical theory, often assert mutually contradictory positions without a hint of irony.  For example, it was not that long ago that progressives were the great champions of freedom of expression.  Now those same progressives want to stifle all dissent.  For progressives, this is not a contradiction.  When it suited their purpose to gain power, they championed freedom.  Now that they have power, they crush their opponents.  Freedom of expression is not a universal principle to be upheld for its own sake.  It is a tool to be used in the power game, and when that tool has served its purpose it is put on the shelf like a wrench after the bolt is tightened.

Now let’s step back.  If materialism is true, its entailments – such as the non-existence of universal truths governing human relations – follow as a matter of logic.  The overwhelming majority of the intellectual elite in our county (and indeed the world) are thoroughgoing materialists.  To them it is obvious.  Whether it is true is no more up for debate than the heliocentric theory of the solar system.  Our universities, our legal institutions, the media, and just about every other institution in our country are now dominated by people who take materialism for granted.  For them, it is hardly even a philosophical theory; it is a settled fact known for certain by all intelligent people. 

This is why progressives have not lifted a finger to stop the political violence we have seen in recent weeks.  For them there is no such thing as a universal truth.  Murder, mayhem, riots, burning, and looting are not in any real sense evil.  They are just things that happen in an amoral universe.  And if the violence is useful in advancing their goals – by, for example, reducing the chances of the bad orange man getting reelected – they not only tolerate it, they encourage it.  For a materialist progressive the end (more power for materialist progressives) justifies everything (including murder). 

There is, of course, a competing view –  the view expressed in the Declaration of Independence:  “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights . . .”  The Declaration derives its logical force from the fundamentally Christian idea of the equality of all men as image bearers of God.  This is another one of those universal truths materialists reject.  In his international bestseller Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, materialist Yuval Noah Harari puts it this way:

[T]he American Founding Fathers . . . imagined a reality governed by universal and immutable principles of justice, such as equality or hierarchy.  Yet the only place where such universal principles exist is in the fertile imagination of Sapiens, and in the myths they invent and tell one another. These principles have no objective validity.

It is easy for us to accept that the division of people into ‘superiors’ and ‘commoners’ is a figment of the imagination.  Yet the idea that all humans are equal is also a myth.  In what sense do all humans equal one another?  Is there any objective reality, outside the human imagination, in which we are truly equal? . . . According to the science of biology, people were not ‘created’. They have evolved. And they certainly did not evolve to be ‘equal’.  The idea of equality is inextricably intertwined with the idea of creation.  The Americans got the idea of equality from Christianity, which argues that every person has a divinely created soul, and that all souls are equal before God.  However, if we do not believe in the Christian myths about God, creation and souls, what does it mean that all people are ‘equal’?  Evolution is based on difference, not on equality. Every person carries a somewhat different genetic code, and is exposed from birth to different environmental influences.  This leads to the development of different qualities that carry with them different chances of survival.  ‘Created equal’ should therefore be translated into ‘evolved differently’.

Just as people were never created, neither, according to the science of biology, is there a ‘Creator’ who ‘endows’ them with anything.  There is only a blind evolutionary process, devoid of any purpose, leading to the birth of individuals.

Harari’s analysis is remarkably candid.  He admits that under materialism, human dignity does not exist; universal principles of justice and equality do not exist; human rights do not exist; liberty does not exist.  All of these things are social constructs resulting from entirely contingent physical processes.

For a couple of centuries, we in the West have enjoyed a polity based on an attempt to infuse Christian doctrines like the equality of all men before God into our political practice.  While the result has been far from perfect, compared to the great mass of men over the long stretch of history, that effort has produced a civilization that has been, by far, the freest, most prosperous, and most democratic the world has ever known.  Is that civilization sustainable when its Christian foundations are crumbling under a relentless onslaught of metaphysical materialism?

Probably not.  And that is why it is incumbent upon all men of good will to fight materialism with all their might.  Fortunately, there is very good reason to believe that the metaphysical premises of Critical Theorists are not true.  Indeed, if materialism is true, it destroys the very concept of truth and is therefore not only not true but incoherent.  In a famous passage C.S. Lewis put it this way:

If the solar system was brought about by an accidental collision, then the appearance of organic life on this planet was also an accident, and the whole evolution of Man was an accident too. If so, then all our present thoughts are mere accidents—the accidental by-product of the movement of atoms. And this holds for the thoughts of the materialists and astronomers as well as for anyone else’s. But if their thoughts—i.e. of materialism and astronomy—are merely accidental by-products, why should we believe them to be true? I see no reason for believing that one accident should be able to give me a correct account of all the other accidents. It’s like expecting that the accidental shape taken by the splash when you upset a milkjug should give you a correct account of how the jug was made and why it was upset.

Go back to the summary of Critical Theory at the start of this post.  One of the things the theory rejects is “rationality.”  But isn’t Critical Theory itself the product of rationality?  And by rejecting rationality has it not sawn off the branch upon which it is sitting?

This is just one obvious line of reasoning that undermines materialism.  There are many others, including the fact that the universe had a beginning which points to Something that caused that beginning; the obvious fine-tuning of the universe for the existence of life; the digital code inside every living cell; the irreducible complexity of all living things; the self-evident existence of transcendent moral truth; the existence of mathematics as immaterial truth . . .  I could go on and on.

In sum, there is certainly no reason to take materialism for granted, and there are many reasons to believe it is a false – indeed a self-referentially incoherent – account of reality. 

I take hope in the fact that many millions of people in this country are not as foolish as the so-called elites.  There is still time to take our country back from them.  But the window is closing.  Soon, I fear, it will be too late.  And if we allow the materialist and their fellow travelers to gain full control of all of the levers of power, look out.  It will make the Chinese Cultural Revolution and the French Terror look like a walk in the park.  You think the blood that has been spilt in recent weeks is terrible?  You’re right.  It has been.  But as the graves of one hundred million victims of materialist systems in the twentieth century bear witness, there is hardly any limit to the violence materialists are willing – indeed eager – to inflict in their pursuit of power. 

51 Replies to “Critical Theory is Certainly Correct

  1. 1
    BobRyan says:

    No democracy has ever survived what the United States is going through. For over 10 years, the only ones buying American debt is the Federal Reserve. We are broke and spending has not slowed. Our educational system is nothing more than indoctrination centers that warp young minds to become future enemies of the United States. The government bureaucracies are strangling innovation, which is what bureaucracies always have done and will continue to do. Innovation is at war with a bureaucratic state and the state always wins. Logic and reason have been removed from every facet of government, which includes courts who do not make judgements based on the wording of the law. Judges legislate from the bench and the socialists call it settled law without any law every being written.

    Peaceful secession with the intent on restoration of the US Constitution is the least bloody path. There is nothing in the Constitution about any state leaving the union, which makes it a 10th Amendment issue. Anything not in the Constitution, a direct reference to the Supremacy Clause, is left to the states and the people. Before someone brings up the Civil War as evidence to the contrary, the Confederates never went through the courts to argue they had the right to leave the Union. They chose to start a bloody war by firing the first shots, which made them states in rebellion, rather than an independent nation.

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    First let me say that this is one of your best pieces that I have ever seen you write Mr. Arrington.

    Secondly, let me add to what you have already stated here.

    “if materialism is true, it destroys the very concept of truth and is therefore not only not true but incoherent.”

    In science, observational evidence is held to be the highest arbiter of truth. The more observational evidence that you can muster for a theory, the more certain you can be that that theory is a correct description of reality. i.e. That your theory is true. That is to say, the certainty that we can derive for any given theory rests on the primary assumption that our observations of reality are reliable and trustworthy.

    Scientific method
    Excerpt: The scientific method is an empirical method of acquiring knowledge that has characterized the development of science since at least the 17th century. It involves careful observation, applying rigorous skepticism about what is observed, given that cognitive assumptions can distort how one interprets the observation. It involves formulating hypotheses, via induction, based on such observations; experimental and measurement-based testing of deductions drawn from the hypotheses; and refinement (or elimination) of the hypotheses based on the experimental findings. These are principles of the scientific method, as distinguished from a definitive series of steps applicable to all scientific enterprises.[1][2][3]
    Though diverse models for the scientific method are available, there is in general a continuous process that includes observations about the natural world.,,
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method

    Please note that the primary assumption of the scientific method is NOT materialism and/or methodological naturalism, as atheists try to falsely claim, but is instead reliable ‘observation’.

    This is an important distinction to take note of since, materialism and/or methodological naturalism undermines this ‘observational’ cornerstone that the scientific method rests upon.

    In the following video and article, Donald Hoffman has, through numerous computer simulations of population genetics, proved that if Darwinian evolution were actually true then ALL of our perceptions and/or observations of reality would be illusory.

    Donald Hoffman: Do we see reality as it is? – Video – 9:59 minute mark
    Quote: “,,,evolution is a mathematically precise theory. We can use the equations of evolution to check this out. We can have various organisms in artificial worlds compete and see which survive and which thrive, which sensory systems or more fit. A key notion in those equations is fitness.,,, fitness does depend on reality as it is, yes.,,, Fitness is not the same thing as reality as it is, and it is fitness, and not reality as it is, that figures centrally in the equations of evolution. So, in my lab, we have run hundreds of thousands of evolutionary game simulations with lots of different randomly chosen worlds and organisms that compete for resources in those worlds. Some of the organisms see all of the reality. Others see just part of the reality. And some see none of the reality. Only fitness. Who wins? Well I hate to break it to you but perception of reality goes extinct. In almost every simulation, organisms that see none of reality, but are just tuned to fitness, drive to extinction that perceive reality as it is. So the bottom line is, evolution does not favor veridical, or accurate perceptions. Those (accurate) perceptions of reality go extinct. Now this is a bit stunning. How can it be that not seeing the world accurately gives us a survival advantage?”
    https://youtu.be/oYp5XuGYqqY?t=601

    The Evolutionary Argument Against Reality – April 2016
    The cognitive scientist Donald Hoffman uses evolutionary game theory to show that our perceptions of an independent reality must be illusions.
    Excerpt: “The classic argument is that those of our ancestors who saw more accurately had a competitive advantage over those who saw less accurately and thus were more likely to pass on their genes that coded for those more accurate perceptions, so after thousands of generations we can be quite confident that we’re the offspring of those who saw accurately, and so we see accurately. That sounds very plausible. But I think it is utterly false. It misunderstands the fundamental fact about evolution, which is that it’s about fitness functions — mathematical functions that describe how well a given strategy achieves the goals of survival and reproduction. The mathematical physicist Chetan Prakash proved a theorem that I devised that says: According to evolution by natural selection, an organism that sees reality as it is will never be more fit than an organism of equal complexity that sees none of reality but is just tuned to fitness. Never.”
    https://www.quantamagazine.org/20160421-the-evolutionary-argument-against-reality/

    The Interface Theory of Perception
    Donald D. Hoffman & Manish Singh & Chetan Prakash
    http://people.psych.cornell.ed.....erface.pdf
    http://ruccs.rutgers.edu/image.....15_PBR.pdf (follow-up discussion)

    Moreover, although Hoffman tried to limit his results to just our visual perceptions, as Plantinga had pointed out years before Hoffman came along, there is no reason why his results do not also extend to undermining our cognitive faculties as well:

    The Case Against Reality – May 13, 2016
    Excerpt: Hoffman seems to come to a conclusion similar to the one Alvin Plantinga argues in ch. 10 of Where the Conflict Really Lies: we should not expect — in the absence of further argument — that creatures formed by a naturalistic evolutionary process would have veridical perceptions.,,,
    First, even if Hoffman’s argument were restricted to visual perception, and not to our cognitive faculties more generally (e.g., memory, introspection, a priori rational insight, testimonial belief, inferential reasoning, etc.), the conclusion that our visual perceptions would be wholly unreliable given natural selection would be sufficient for Plantinga’s conclusion of self-defeat. After all, reliance upon the veridicality of our visual perceptions was and always will be crucial for any scientific argument for the truth of evolution. So if these perceptions cannot be trusted, we have little reason to think evolutionary theory is true.
    Second, it’s not clear that Hoffman’s application of evolutionary game theory is only specially applicable to visual perception, rather than being relevant for our cognitive faculties generally. If “we find that veridical perceptions can be driven to extinction by non-veridical strategies that are tuned to utility rather than objective reality” (2010, p. 504, my emphasis), then why wouldn’t veridical cognitive faculties (more generally) be driven to extinction by non-veridical strategies that are tuned to utility rather than objective reality? After all, evolutionary theory purports to be the true account of the formation of all of our cognitive faculties, not just our faculty of visual perception. If evolutionary game theory proves that “true perception generally goes extinct” when “animals that perceive the truth compete with others that sacrifice truth for speed and energy-efficiency” (2008), why wouldn’t there be a similar sacrifice with respect to other cognitive faculties? In fact, Hoffman regards the following theorem as now proven: “According to evolution by natural selection, an organism that sees reality as it is will never be more fit than an organism of equal complexity that sees none of reality but is just tuned to fitness” (Atlantic interview). But then wouldn’t it also be the case that an organism that cognizes reality as it is will never be more fit than an organism of equal complexity that cognizes none of reality but is just tuned to fitness? On the evolutionary story, every cognitive faculty we have was produced by a process that was tuned to fitness (rather than tuned to some other value, such as truth).
    http://www.gregwelty.com/2016/.....t-reality/

    In short, and in what should be needless to say, a worldview that undermines the scientific method itself by holding all our observations of reality, and cognitive faculties, are illusory is NOT a worldview that can firmly ground the scientific method!

    Moreover, completely contrary to what Hoffman found for Darwinian theory, it turns out that accurate perception, i.e. conscious observation, far from being unreliable and illusory, is experimentally found to be far more integral to reality, i.e. far more reliable of reality, than the mathematics of population genetics predicted. For instance, In the following extension of Wheeler’s delayed choice experiment, it was found that reality doesn’t exist without an observer.

    New Mind-blowing Experiment Confirms That Reality Doesn’t Exist If You Are Not Looking at It – June 3, 2015
    Excerpt: The results of the Australian scientists’ experiment, which were published in the journal Nature Physics, show that this choice is determined by the way the object is measured, which is in accordance with what quantum theory predicts.
    “It proves that measurement is everything. At the quantum level, reality does not exist if you are not looking at it,” said lead researcher Dr. Andrew Truscott in a press release.,,,
    “The atoms did not travel from A to B. It was only when they were measured at the end of the journey that their wave-like or particle-like behavior was brought into existence,” he said.
    Thus, this experiment adds to the validity of the quantum theory and provides new evidence to the idea that reality doesn’t exist without an observer.
    http://themindunleashed.org/20.....at-it.html

    There are many such experiments as the preceding experiment in quantum mechanics that have reached the same conclusion. Namely that out conscious observations of reality ore inextricably linked the existence of reality itself. As John Wheeler stated,

    “The universe does not exist “out there,” independent of us. We are inescapably involved in bringing about that which appears to be happening. We are not only observers. We are participators. In some strange sense, this is a participatory universe.”
    – John Wheeler
    Quoted in Denis Brian’s, ‘The Voice Of Genius: Conversations with Nobel Scientists and Other Luminaries’, 2000, pg. 127.

    That observation, or more specifically ‘conscious observation’, is experimentally found to be inextricably linked the existence of reality itself, should not be all that surprising for us to find out.

    After all, as the scientific method itself assumes, and as any description of reality that we may put forth assumes, “Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.”?

    “No, I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.”
    – Max Planck (1858–1947), one of the primary founders of quantum theory, The Observer, London, January 25, 1931

    Consciousness is simply the required prerequisite of all possible prerequisites for any coherent definition of reality we may put forth.

    As Eugene Wigner put the situation, “our knowledge of the external world is the content of our consciousness and that the consciousness, therefore, cannot be denied.”

    “The principal argument against materialism is not that illustrated in the last two sections: that it is incompatible with quantum theory. The principal argument is that thought processes and consciousness are the primary concepts, that our knowledge of the external world is the content of our consciousness and that the consciousness, therefore, cannot be denied. On the contrary, logically, the external world could be denied—though it is not very practical to do so. In the words of Niels Bohr, “The word consciousness, applied to ourselves as well as to others, is indispensable when dealing with the human situation.” In view of all this, one may well wonder how materialism, the doctrine that “life could be explained by sophisticated combinations of physical and chemical laws,” could so long be accepted by the majority of scientists.”
    – Eugene Wigner, Remarks on the Mind-Body Question, pp 167-177.

    In short and in conclusion, we can be absolutely certain that the Mind of God must be the ultimate foundation for reality since to deny the primacy of consciousness for reality, then any certainty that we can possibly have for anything in reality evaporates,,, And you can be absolutely ‘certain’ of that fact 🙂

    2 Corinthians 13:1
    This is the third time I am coming to you. Every matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.

  3. 3
    Barry Arrington says:

    Thank you BA77.

  4. 4
    kairosfocus says:

    BA, excellent, we need to connect dots, including on why despite compelling evidence ID remains locked out. And, we need to look at pointed issues on likely onward playout of the games afoot. KF

  5. 5
    Barry Arrington says:

    Thank you KF.

  6. 6

    And, here again, we see the evidence that we don’t actually live in world of matter and energy; we all actually live in mind. Or, call it the “mind of God,” if you will. An external physical world is an entirely unnecessary and unnecessarily problematic theory, if it even rises to the level of “theory.” It’s really just more of a hypothetical assumption, IMO. An actual external physical reality is not necessary to have the experience of what seems to be an external physical reality – dreams are evidence of this, no?

  7. 7
    polistra says:

    Well, it’s certainly correct from the view of the psychopaths who use it, but it’s not PRACTICAL for them.

    Start from the strictly materialist assumption that morality is the permanent record of behavior that survives. We have scriptures from all major religions, and the scriptures agree on most major points, because the scriptures were written by people who survived. The tribes that didn’t follow the rules died quickly and didn’t leave any records.

    The psychopaths who use ‘critical theory’ are killing the societies they depend on. In the current “virus” genocide, they are explicitly and intentionally destroying businesses and hospitals and human immunity. The act of destruction gives momentary pleasure to the psychopath, but when the destruction is done he won’t have anyone left to dominate and humiliate, and he won’t have any food or medical care to keep him alive.

    The basic rule still holds true. Morality is how we survive. When we break all the rules we won’t leave any records of our idiotic and evil culture for the proverbial Martian archeologists.

  8. 8
    bornagain77 says:

    WJM, I would hold that the best that we can currently say, as far as the experimental evidence itself will allow us to say, is that the external reality that we observe and experience is not material and that that external reality, whatever that external reality may be, is inextricably bound to conscious observation and/or how we choose to carry out our conscious observations. As Zeilinger stated, “We are not just passive observers.”

    “The Kochen-Speckter Theorem talks about properties of one system only. So we know that we cannot assume – to put it precisely, we know that it is wrong to assume that the features of a system, which we observe in a measurement exist prior to measurement. Not always. I mean in a certain cases. So in a sense, what we perceive as reality now depends on our earlier decision what to measure. Which is a very, very, deep message about the nature of reality and our part in the whole universe. We are not just passive observers.”
    – Anton Zeilinger – Quantum Physics Debunks Materialism – video 7:17 minute mark
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=4C5pq7W5yRM#t=437

    To say, as you do, that “An external physical world is an entirely unnecessary,,, theory” is simply to go way beyond what the evidence is actually telling us since we do in fact experience a ‘external physical world’ (whatever ‘physical’ may mean in that sense).

    It simply is not warranted nor practical to deny the reality of an ‘external world’ (whatever that world may ultimately be composed of). As Wigner stated in the quote I already referenced, “logically, the external world could be denied—though it is not very practical to do so.”

  9. 9
    David P says:

    Barry, what you say about materialists is true. What you say about a theist worldview is true, “We hold these truths..”.
    However, you equate progressives with materialists.
    There are theist progressives, therefore critical theory does not apply to progressives.

  10. 10
    Barry Arrington says:

    David P,
    There is without the slightest doubt a high degree of overlap between progressives and materialists. But, as you say, the fit is not one-to-one. Certainly the progressives who embrace critical theory are either materialists or deeply confused.

  11. 11
    Querius says:

    Great insights, all! It was a pleasure to read the post and the comments that followed.

    -Q

  12. 12

    BA77:
    Here’s the issue, as I see it, when anyone says “we experience an external world.” It is literally impossible to “experience an external world” because all experience – all of it, every bit – is necessarily internal. All experience is internal and only occurs in the mind, regardless of what causes that experience. Even if an external world causes our experience, the “experience of it” occurs entirely within the mind. Shut the mind off, no experience, period. Can the same be said of shutting off the so-called “external world?” Nope.

    What’s more efficient? The existence of an entire external world that has to be processed and matched up with physical sensory equipment, translations, and basically a holographic representation of that world in the mind, or just creating that world as experience in mind, since that’s the only place those experiences occur anyway? One theory requires an entire physical universe and billions of years of history, physical to mental translations and interactions, etc., that the other theory doesn’t even need.

    As far as going “well beyond what the evidence is actually telling us;” I don’t agree. I think, rather, that it is a rather obvious interpretation of the evidence (whether or not it is true). The implication is there and the inference, while perhaps difficult to accommodate, is clear – again, whether or not it is true. I think it is worth considering.

    Wigner himself agreed it was one logical extrapolation of the evidence at hand. The practicality of that model would depend on the fruit of the model. To dismiss it out-of-hand without considering it would be irresponsible, IMO, especially if it just so happens to be true and the model capable of bearing good fruit.

  13. 13
    kairosfocus says:

    DavidP:

    Would that this were true:

    you equate progressives with materialists.
    There are theist progressives, therefore critical theory does not apply to progressives.

    If worldviews and associated cultural/policy agendas were always coherent, that might be so. However, incoherence abounds and there are such things as accomodation to a dominant cultural programme. And in fact, critical theory is just as present in theology as anywhere else. Indeed, that is a major advantage, in programmatic terms, for the cultural form Marxism, as its narrative of oppression and claimed championing of liberation as well as deconstructionism lend themselves to veiling the worldview roots and nihilistic, will to power tendencies, so that progressives of all sorts of worldviews are caught up in the scheme. Including theological and other religious leaders.

    That does not mean that the inner dynamics and the driving force of evolutionary materialism are not present or exert no effective force. Just the contrary. (Nor is this new, I will not here use Lenin’s terminology for such fellow travellers, I just note that it showed his fundamental contempt.)

    KF

  14. 14
    Eugene says:

    This is a good read, which ultimately elaborates on Dostoevsky’s “If God does not exist, then everything is permitted.”

    P.S. Why UD does not have a “Like” button for comments?

  15. 15
    vividbleau says:

    Well done BA. What many are failing to appreciate is that Critical Theory and it’s alliance with post modernism will destroy science. According to Critical Race and Critical Social Justice theory the scientific method is just another form of power imposed by white people on society no more valid than knowledge let’s say by a shaman.. They are coming for the scientific community, the war on math is not an aberration. People need to wake up.

    Vivid

  16. 16
    bornagain77 says:

    WJM at 12,

    while I agree that the prevailing concept of a physical world independent of consciousness is unnecessary, I disagree with your claim, if I am reading you correctly, that the external world is, basically, ‘all in our heads’.

    As John von Neumann himself stated in regards to quantum mechanics, “we must always divide the world into two parts, the one being the observed system, the other the observer.”?

    John von Neumann – (1903-1957)
    Excerpt: “We wish to measure a temperature.,,,
    But in any case, no matter how far we calculate — to the mercury vessel, to the scale of the thermometer, to the retina, or into the brain, at some time we must say: and this is perceived by the observer. That is, we must always divide the world into two parts, the one being the observed system, the other the observer.”?
    John von Neumann – 1903-1957 – The Mathematical Foundations of Quantum Mechanics, pp.418-21 – 1955?

    After all WJM, we are not the ones responsible for collapsing the infinite dimensional wave function to its single bit state are we?

    That is to say, that although we have a free will choice in what type of reality gets presented to our inner subjective experience, i.e. “we are not just passive observers” (Zeilinger), we are still not the ones ultimately responsible for presenting that ‘external reality’ to our inner subjective experience.

    There is something that must be ‘outside of ourselves’ that must be responsible for collapsing the ‘infinite dimensional – infinite information’ wave function.

    As to the wave function being mathematically defined as being in a ‘infinite dimensional’ and ‘infinite information’ state prior to collapse, I hold that it is fairly obvious that only God has the causal adequacy within Himself to explain quantum wave collapse.

    That is to say, I hold that only omniscient God has the capacity within Himself to explain why we experience a external world that is separate from our own inner subjective experience.

    Moreover, a demarcation between ‘external world’ and ‘inner subjective experience’, is a fine line that must be maintained so that we do not fall into the trap of solipsism like Eugene Wigner fell into..

    And I believe some other quantum luminary even fell into the trap of panpsychism (I.e. reality is just an illusion of the mind), though his name escapes me right now.

    So yes, such a distinction between ‘inner world’ and ‘outer world’ does indeed appear to have the very practical purpose of preventing us from falling into those absurd philosophies.

  17. 17
    bornagain77 says:

    WJM at 12,

    while I agree with you that the prevailing concept of a physical world independent of consciousness is unnecessary, I disagree with your claim, if I am reading you correctly, that the external world is, basically, ‘all in our heads’.

    As John von Neumann himself, (a very big proponent of the consciousness model of quantum mechanics), stated in regards to quantum mechanics, “we must always divide the world into two parts, the one being the observed system, the other the observer.”

    John von Neumann – (1903-1957)
    Excerpt: “We wish to measure a temperature.,,,
    But in any case, no matter how far we calculate — to the mercury vessel, to the scale of the thermometer, to the retina, or into the brain, at some time we must say: and this is perceived by the observer. That is, we must always divide the world into two parts, the one being the observed system, the other the observer.”?-John von Neumann – 1903-1957 – The Mathematical Foundations of Quantum Mechanics, pp.418-21 – 1955?

    After all WJM, we are not the ones responsible for collapsing the infinite dimensional quantum wave function to its single bit state are we?

    That is to say, that although we have a free will choice in what type of reality ultimately gets presented to our inner subjective experience, (i.e. “we are not just passive observers” (Zeilinger)), we are still not the ones ultimately responsible for presenting that ‘external reality’ to our inner subjective experience.

    There is something that must be ‘outside of ourselves’ that must be responsible for collapsing the ‘infinite dimensional – infinite information’ wave function.

    I hold that only omniscient God has the capacity within Himself to explain ‘infinite dimensional’ wave function collapse and also explain why we, by all appearances, experience a external world that is separate from our own inner subjective experience of it.

    Moreover, a demarcation between the ‘external world’ and the ‘inner subjective experience’, is also a fine line that must be maintained in order that we do not fall into the trap of solipsism like Eugene Wigner fell into at one time.

    And I believe some other quantum luminary, who denied the reality of an ‘external world’, even fell into the trap of panpsychism (I.e. reality is just an illusion of the mind), though his name escapes me at the present moment.

    So yes, such a distinction between ‘inner world’ and ‘outer world’ does indeed appear to have the very practical purpose of preventing us from falling into those absurd philosophies.

    Don’t get me wrong. I completely agree with you that consciousness is primary in quantum mechanics, and that this fact needs to be more fully appreciated and accepted, it is just that I think you are pushing it way too far in, (again if I read you correctly), your complete denial of the reality of an external world apart from our conscious observation of it..

  18. 18
    David P says:

    Barry, I agree any progressive embracing critical theory is confused. I don’t about any overlap. One could say there is a high level of overlap between cults and Christianity, but that is a broad brush to paint with. Any overlap is superficial and irrelevant.
    You’re spot on about materialism would rationalize looting and rioting as not evil. However, progressives want to bring change through the government, not anarchy.
    “Murder, mayhem, riots, burning, and looting are not in any real sense evil”. Again, to materialist logic you’ve got a case, not to progressive logic. Progressives condemn rioting and looting, and of course, murder. Murder doesn’t help anyone. Progressives aren’t the end justifies the means type, they are the make it better type. They want to improve the government and rule of law, not destroy it.

  19. 19
    David P says:

    Kairosfocus, it seems to me critical theory has irreconcilable differences with theology. What do you mean by critical theory is present within theology?

  20. 20
    kairosfocus says:

    DavidP, if we were utterly coherent and perspicacious, such would not be, but look around, you will see that there are any number of trained and practising theologians and church leaders deeply influenced by or practicing critical theory themes. I suspect many who do that do so without full awareness of inconsistencies. Here is an expression of concern. KF

  21. 21
    David P says:

    Kairosfocus
    Fair enough, I see what you mean about how some of these themes have wormed their way in to theologians and church leaders.
    The lack of coherence and perspicacity would mean no one is exempt.
    It seems to me conservatives and republicans are employing the principles of critical theory too. Trump has done nothing but grab for power while oppressing other groups since he has been in office. Barr only exacerbates this problem. The current administration has done more to upset the checks and balance our government was founded on in the last 4 years than any progressives.
    It doesn’t make sense to prompt people to take back our country from elites… by voting for more elites?

  22. 22
    BobRyan says:

    David P

    I suggest you take a good look at what Wilson did. He was a progressive who locked up political prisoners, including members of the press who would not report what he wanted them to report. Wilson segregated the federal government and the US military. He spent his first term growing mistrust of Germans among Americans to ensure we came in on the side of the French. The propaganda used worked so well that the National Socialists stole it, as they did everything else.

    Franklin Roosevelt ordered Americans of Japanese decent to be locked up without due process. He continued the segregation that Wilson started and surrounded himself with anti-Semitic eugenicists, since that was what he and Wilson both were. Truman almost had the entire cabinet he inherited quit en mass if he recognized Israel as a new nation in the world.

    It was Eisenhower who undid what Wilson started.

  23. 23
    BobRyan says:

    David P

    I am not a fan of Trump. He has not brought law and order to the United States. 45 states violated the Supremacy Clause and not one action has been taken by the justice department. There are no exceptions to the Supremacy Clause.

  24. 24
    kairosfocus says:

    DavidP,

    I am not a Republican [far from it!], nor am I wedded to American “conservatism” which failed to conserve marriage or bathrooms etc., nor do I hold any particular brief for a certain Contractor in Chief. Though, I must acknowledge that he has done some good, and is in key part under siege politically . . . similar to a Movie actor in Chief 40 years ago . . . because he is rightly regarded as an obstacle to the radicals and their increasingly extreme agenda rapidly becoming an ever higher kinetic 4GW “colour revolution” attempt fronted by Red Guard infiltrated and dominated riots.

    But then, in politics and policy, perfection is never an option on the table; instead it is easily trotted out by dominant voices to try to discredit the inconvenient other. Which, is exactly a part of deconstructionism.

    I have little doubt that some American Conservatives are caught up in the temper of the times, including undue deference to or influence from:

    — the critical studies movement (thus Marx and his heirs including the Frankfurt School etc),
    — deconstructionism (which, note from BA’s summary clip from W/pedia, is embedded),
    — evolutionary materialistic scientism,
    — social darwinism & eugenics [this one is just underground],
    — nihilistic legal positivism.
    — might/manipulation makes ‘right’/ ‘truth’/ ‘knowledge’/ ‘rights’/ ‘justice’ etc
    — and more

    That is not the yardstick, it is pointing to the urgent need of sound reformation.

    In which regard, such Conservatives will as a rule be LESS influenced and MORE open to sound correction. Which counts, including with the case of a second Democrat- of- the- past and popular figure who has run for and won the US Presidency in 40 years as an “outsider”- to- the- uniparty- establishment, not- “controlled” [= compromised]- opposition Conservative (more or less) Republican. (The two Bushes seem to have been much closer to the establishment.)

    It is such wrecking ball outsiders who just might hear the people of the hinterlands, who might stop the force of destructive novelties (we need to ask why and how an Actor won the de facto, in the shadows and proxies WW3 when for 15 years the establishment had been steadily losing it at geostrategic level) and who may be able to help rebuild the stabilising buttresses required for sound democratic government.

    So, I take a very different perspective on the issues than you might be inclined to imagine.

    That should be fairly obvious from my presentation of a dynamical analysis of political possibilities and the linked role of the period 1450 – 1650 then 1688 to 1787, informed by self evident first principles and first duties of reason that manifest our built-in moral government rooted in the wellspring of reality itself. Which, in turn sets out a framework of rationally evident natural law tied to the implications of morally governed free, rational being . . . the “nature” in question . . . and pointing to the reality of the inherently good and utterly wise as Creator. These are key buttresses for stable democracy, as say the US founders rightly acknowledged in their July 4th 1776 Declaration of Independence.

    That is a big part of what our civilisation’s buttresses that enable stable constitutional, small-d democratic government with the opening up of liberty and room for rule of law with a culture of opportunity and enterprise that drives genuine progress. (FYI, wrecking individuality, identity and creation order of maleness, femaleness, marriage and linked moral government of sex is NOT genuine progress, it reflects the rot that Marx’s heirs have in key part contributed to.)

    In the midst of all of this, the USA — geostrategic centre of our civilisation- that- has- lost- its- way — is in 4G bleeding Kansas stage civil war initiated by radicals who intend to seize oligarchic, domineering power. Across this strange year of pandemic, the kinetic element has begun to rise, we are now hearing of IEDs in use at Portland. And if that Courthouse falls, many other institutions will be taken under siege (this is like Guadalcanal).

    The next 6 – 18 months will be decisive, and no, the election will not stop the conflict, it will only heighten it. The hinterland deplorables will not go down without a serious and bloody fight and the coastally and urban based Red Guards and their elite backers have declared outright war on civilisation. (What do you think defund/abolish the police implies? What utter folly!)

    In my view, the Red Guards and their backers will lose but are liable to do serious, FURTHER permanent damage to the USA, and so to our civilisation. That will have incalculable but predictably very bad global geostrategic consequences. Damage already done is doing much the same.

    Marches of folly have consequences.

    KF

  25. 25

    BA77 @17,
    I agree with you on many points.

    In order for personal experience to exist, there must exist an observer-observed relationship where the observer perceives itself as distinct and separate from what it is observing.. However, as we can directly experience in dreams, that perspective can be accomplished entirely “in our own heads.”

    As you say, and as KF has pointed out many times, the danger of this worldview is that it can lead to solipsism and other impractical perspectives. I agree that it can – but then, virtually any worldview can lead to dangerous and impractical perspectives if not properly adjudicated by reasoning to avoid those problems. We want to avoid existential absurdities at the very least. It also helps if a belief is also useful in terms of making predictions and decisions.

    The main problem I’ve noted in prior (and most current) attempts to develop a “mental reality” model of existence is that it is largely done from an “external reality” framework of ideas and subconscious habit. For example, the charge that a “mental reality” model of existence implies solipsism. Solipsism is a perspective completely rooted in the “external physical reality” model. IOW, it’s what “mental reality” looks like from an “external physical reality” perspective. It’s not what the mental reality model “looks like” from the mental reality model perspective. Virtually all objections to the mental reality model are levied from the opposing perspective as if those objections are “the same thing” within the theory. To properly criticize any model, one must either levy a substantive claim of error with the premise or, failing that, show where there is a problem with the internal logic of the theory.

    The premise – that we exist in a mental reality – cannot be reasonably challenged. That doesn’t make it true; it just means that as a premise in and of itself, it is logically impossible to challenge because it is a fact that all experience of reality – whatever it is – takes place in mind. The premise is actually more resilient than the theory of an external-to-mind reality because of that fact; there’s no logical means by which the “external-to-mind reality” premise can be substantiated. That latter theory can only ever be an assumption.

    But, again, that doesn’t make mental reality true, and it doesn’t mean the internal logic holds up in the face of reasoning. It also doesn’t necessarily make mental reality a more useful model.

    I don’t think what I’m proposing is “extreme” in any sense other than it challenges the deeply habitual and widespread way most people think about the nature of existence. In purely logical terms, the addition of an entire unnecessary category of existence that mind must in some way interact with, process and affect successfully is the more “extreme” and functionally problematic position. Mental reality is more efficient by far.

    It seems your main point of contention with mental reality theory is that it leads to absurd philosophies; my counter to that is yes, it can lead to those absurd philosophies when it is improperly examined from the inapplicable framework of an external-reality perspective. Of course what results from that improper process is absurd and/or self-contradictory. How could it not be?

  26. 26
    john_a_designer says:

    From the OP:

    Go back to the summary of Critical Theory at the start of this post. One of the things the theory rejects is “rationality.” But isn’t Critical Theory itself the product of rationality? And by rejecting rationality has it not sawn off the branch upon which it is sitting?

    Yet the progressive needs the pretence of rationality. That’s why ALL of our regular interlocutors know how to be argumentative. However, being argumentative is not the same as making a sound logical argument. Unfortunately too many people on our side (the ID’ist, theist or traditionalist side) don’t know the difference.

    For example, if there is no such thing as moral truth– that there are moral facts which are really right or wrong– what are we left with? Just moral beliefs or opinions. But how or why am I obligated to accept your moral beliefs or opinions? Are your moral beliefs and opinions morally binding on me? Logically no, but this where the pretence of moral obligation enters in which ends up with the argument, “you have to listen to me because I have THE RIGHT to demonstrate and protest because I feel oppressed but I don’t have to listen to you because if you don’t agree with me you are an oppressor.” How do you reason with that kind of thinking?

    Of course, if one rejects logic and reason itself as being the tool of the oppressor, as many on the secular progressive left appear to do is there a way out of the dilemma? As far as I can see the answer is no.

  27. 27

    JAD said: “Of course, if one rejects logic and reason itself as being the tool of the oppressor, as many on the secular progressive left appear to do is there a way out of the dilemma? As far as I can see the answer is no.”

    What’s the dilemma you’re trying to get out of? The desire to have a rational conversation with someone who disregards logic and reason, or is simply incapable of it? The solution is: change your desire and stop talking to them.

  28. 28

    If those who prefer logic, civility and reason limit themselves to those tools when faced with irrational incivility and conflict, they will lose every conflict and be satisfied, on their way to the gallows or the gulag, that their behavior in the conflict was noble, measured and reasonable.

  29. 29
    john_a_designer says:

    How can we have an intellectually or ethically honest discussion if there is no objective standard of moral truth, honesty or truthfulness? In other words, if there is no such standard how can I trust that you are being honest? If I can’t trust that you are being honest how can we have any kind of honest discussion or debate?

  30. 30
    kairosfocus says:

    JaD, WM, etc, now we see some of the critical cultural buttresses of a sustainable democratic polity. Now, ask yourself, what is being substituted, ans: power grabs and contentions over power. Nihilism in short, which is essentially absurd — but we deal with those who are not fazed by mere absurdity. I cannot believe some have suggested that rationality is racism, structural racism, and even Mathematics, much less Science. Beyond a certain point, freedom is lost and we will have a big bloody fight just to get back to lawful oligarchy . . . nowhere near what we had and are so busily destroying. And since we are dealing with people wrecking civilisation, we really need to deal with them. One step is to expose their incoherence and utter irrationality, towards building a critical mass to act to restore sound order. Beyond a certain point, power grabs like this become violent, so they need to see that there is an effective deterrent. The enabling media and civilisation-undermining academy similarly need to be exposed and frankly boycotted and thus defunded. Law and government need to be reformed on the principles in the US DoI, which is precisely why they are trying to discredit it; we need to turn that around and hold that as discrediting them. As the US is geostratiegic centre of gravity of our civilisation and is already in escalating 4th gen civil war (now at bleeding Kansas stage), we have 6 – 18 months. A lot of damage has already been done, and more will be done. We will pay a terrible price for our collective folly. KF

  31. 31
    ET says:

    kairosfocus- food for thought: Peaceful Science and Joshua Swamidass are misunderstanding and misrepresenting the EF: https://discourse.peacefulscience.org/t/the-explanatory-filter-and-cause-of-death/11263

    Methinks it is time for another UD OP on the EF correcting their many mistakes.

    Do you know how scientists could consider an unknown natural cause? Joshua seems to think that is a deal breaker. He doesn’t seem to understand that scientific inferences are tentative. This leaves the door open for potential falsification- as with all scientific inferences.

    It’s as if Peaceful Science doesn’t understand how to conduct an investigation.

  32. 32
    Seversky says:

    As Dr House is wont to say “everybody lies” and, assuming we all have free will, any objective moral standard would not change that. You could still choose to lie and how could I know that you are?

  33. 33
    john_a_designer says:

    To have any kind of rational discussion or debate you need to begin with some kind of common ground. With a logical argument common ground begins with a factually true premise or proposition. If you don’t begin there all you are doing is talking past or over the top of each other etc. In other words, you get nowhere, except very frustrated.

    Premises and propositions can usually be stated very succinctly. For example, earlier @ #26 I asked, “How or why am I obligated to accept your moral beliefs or opinions?” We can rephrase that question as a proposition:

    I am not obligated to accept your subjective moral beliefs or opinions if that is your only basis.

    For example, eating chicken is immoral because chickens according to PETA are “Quite simply… the most abused animals on the planet.” Of course, that same logic applies in some way to every other sentient animal species so that obligates you, me and everyone else to become vegetarians. Really?

    Obviously, then moral subjectivism and relativism by definition cannot provide the basis for moral obligation. Therefore, they are not the basis for any kind of system of moral obligations or values. Indeed, so-called moral subjectivism is not moral theory at all. It’s not only delusional but it’s pure nonsense.

  34. 34
    kairosfocus says:

    ET, they take out of context, set up and knock over a strawman. What happens with a death is we do look at circumstances and signs. Because we have huge background, we can readily infer death by self-inflicted or other-inflicted action. In the case of other phenomena, where there is controversy, we have to reckon with type I and II errors. Accordingly, because of epistemological balance of risks a generous double default is given to natural regularities and/or blind chance, willing to accept false negatives. High contingency of outcomes indicates mechanical necessity is not a good explanation of some relevant aspect. When high contingency (GT 500 – 1,000 bits) AND rare in configuration space functionally specific outcomes are found together, it is maximally implausible that such would occur by chance. Then, we find that this cluster, per both search challenge and observation is a highly reliable sign of design even when we are not able to access the remote time or place of origin. These objectors should know this. It seems, they are being selectively hyperskeptical. KF

  35. 35
    kairosfocus says:

    Sev, actually, imprecise. As universal deceit makes community impossible, we may comfortably infer that the vast majority of the time people tell truth, or trust and community disintegrate. People occasionally lie and some are habitually deceitful. Much more often, people are imprudent or in error, which are precisely why we need so much to heed first principles and duties of reason. KF

  36. 36
    john_a_designer says:

    A key question here is whether any naturalistic or materialistic worldview can provide any kind of basis for universal human rights? Keep in mind exactly what that means. A universal human right applies to all people living at all times. In other words, you naturally or intrinsically have rights because you are human and only human beings have those rights.

    I made the following comment some time ago on another thread. It is worth repeating here:

    Once again, without a transcendent standard for interpersonal moral obligations there is no basis for universal human rights. Nevertheless, the secular progressive left, which has no transcendent basis for morality, ethics or human rights because it is rooted in a mindless naturalistic metaphysic, has illegitimately co-opted the idea of human rights to push its perverted political agenda of so-called social justice. But how can someone’s (or anyone’s) subjective opinion of right and wrong become the basis of universal human rights?

    Many of our regular interlocutors, have tried to argue that moral values are in fact subjective. But again, subjective values do not carry any kind of interpersonal moral obligation. They are your values not mine. They are simply arbitrary personal preferences. Why should I be obligated to even respect your personal opinion? How can one have something like universal human rights based on arbitrary subjective personal preferences? And what good is any kind of moral system if moral obligations are not real and binding?

    The U.S. founding fathers appear to have understood that ideologically motivated groups or “factions” which existed in the 18th century, like todays social justice warrior left (with its so-called factions like Black Lives Matter, Antifa etc.) would try to subvert the political process. This is one reason why they made it difficult to amend the U.S. Constitution. For example, the first 10 amendments to the constitution, which were passed very quickly, (the so-called Bill of Rights) required a 2/3 vote in each house of congress as well as approval of ¾ of state legislatures. It appears the founders thought this would at least help prevent a small vocal faction from subverting the will of the people. However, apparently they didn’t notice the loophole in article III that allowed Supreme Court judges to appropriate more power than was constitutionally granted to them. That’s the loophole that the secular progressive left has been able to exploit and is why they have used the courts to push their agenda. You don’t need to convince an overwhelming majority of people you are right– you don’t even need to convince a majority. All you need is to convince are a few sympathetic judges who share your “enlightened” group think. The problem is that is not representative or small-r republican government. That’s an oligarchy. An oligarchy is one of the types of government that takes away rights.

  37. 37
    Seversky says:

    John_a_designer @ 33

    I am not obligated to accept your subjective moral beliefs or opinions if that is your only basis.

    Same here. I’m not obligated to accept your moral beliefs or those you claim are objective or those you claim were handed down by God. So where do we go from here?

  38. 38
    ET says:

    seversky:

    I’m not obligated to accept your moral beliefs or those you claim are objective or those you claim were handed down by God.

    And yet you follow them. Societies are built on them.

    Weird…

  39. 39
    ET says:

    Yes, kairosfocus. It makes one shake their head when Joshua boldly claims to understand ID and its arguments.

    Yes, you have a dead body. Next you find out why and what caused it. Can nature strangle someone and cause those marks? Maybe in a hurricane, tornado or other strong wind. So yes, as you said, context is important. Cause of death is determined to be asphyxiation, we move on to what caused that.

    They seem to think it is all done at once just because it is on the first step of the EF process. But each EF step contains multiple steps for fleshing out that decision box. They don’t seem to realize that.

  40. 40
    john_a_designer says:

    Sev,

    I’m not obligated to accept your moral beliefs or those you claim are objective or those you claim were handed down by God.

    Of course not. That follows from moral subjectivism. Under moral subjectivism there are no moral obligations and if there are no moral obligations there is no logical basis for any kind of morality or human rights. What’s your point?

  41. 41
    Seversky says:

    John_a_designer @ 40

    What’s your point?

    The point is quite simple. Who better to decide the moral codes that should apply to human societies or the rights that all members of those societies should enjoy than the human beings themselves? Human beings have demonstrated over thousands of years that they are capable of forming co-operative societies. It’s true that they have been far from perfect thus far but, if we look on the whole thing as a work-in-progress, there’s no reason not to keep trying.

  42. 42
    David P says:

    BobRyan
    The actions of those presidents were terrible. Seems to me the terrible deeds of the presidents you pointed out are in opposition to the progressive ideology, not the logical outflow of it.
    Christians that blow up abortion clinics are terrible too. But we would certainly make a distinction between them and the vast majority of Christians appalled by their actions.

    I’m glad you are no fan of Trump. I hope many more fellow Christians see how little Trump is aligned with them.

  43. 43
    David P says:

    Kairosfocus
    “So, I take a very different perspective on the issues than you might be inclined to imagine.”
    So you do. I will keep that in mind.

    “In which regard, such Conservatives will as a rule be LESS influenced and MORE open to sound correction.”
    I agree that has been true in the past but I would say the current administration is impervious to any correction. Impeachment only emboldened him. Seems to me the current administration is the one with an extreme agenda, upsetting checks and balance, grabbing for more power. I think reelecting them would do more harm than the radical protesters.

    In OP Barry said “There is only power and those who have it and those who do not. Steve Bannon (Trumps former White house Chief Strategist) said this in an interview a while back:
    “Darkness is good”, he said “Dick Cheney. Darth Vader. Satan. That’s power,”
    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-steve-bannon-dick-cheney-darth-vader-satan-a7425816.html

    I doubt Barry would include the current administration as taking their cue from critical theory, let alone consider them as part of the elites that need stopped.

  44. 44
    kairosfocus says:

    DavidP, I suggest, the general situation in hand is a 4th Gen civil war with now accelerating kinetic element. Notice the van in Seattle that seems to have been set up for nail bombs using fireworks plus nails etc. in that context, I find that the recent impeachment was a serious and unwarranted, unfounded abuse of a solemn power to indict politicians guilty of high crimes and misdemeanours, undermining future cases where that is warranted. In fact, it seems to be yet another attempt to destabilise a delicately balanced constitutional framework by injecting Westminster-style votes of no confidence. But, US Presidents are not members of the lower house with its majority support, they are separately elected with specific constitutional powers tracing to that base of legitimacy. Of course, ever since 2000, one US Party has challenged any fairly close Presidential election they did not win; Nixon in 1960 did better; quite an indictment. Mix in the hysteria being stirred by their publicists dressed in Journalistic robes, and it is not hard to see some of why I point to undermining key buttresses of democratic government. Indeed, that is part of why I keep pointing to 4GW in the geostrategic centre of our civilisation. The base charge was patently without merit, the impeachment was literally contemplated as soon as the salty mouthed Contractor in Chief was elected, and proceeded on a wave of manifestly ill-founded accusations, with the further taint of attempted protection of a political family of an opponent in the context of highly dubious business dealings. Not to mention, a pattern of resort to Star Chamber, part of what provoked Civil war in the 1640’s. It was definitely not a Watergate case. This is lawfare, not sound government. It is part of the downward spiral into chaos led by men of supremely injudicious temperament just shown by a shameless hearing in which an AG was abused and silenced under colours of questioning; in defiance of every canon of natural justice and parliamentary law. There will be Hell — literally — to pay for what is going on in the US and beyond. The folly of our civilisation’s current elites is manifest. KF

  45. 45
    kairosfocus says:

    JAD, it is worse:

    We can readily identify at least seven inescapable first duties of reason. Inescapable, as they are so antecedent to reasoning that even the objector implicitly appeals to them; i.e. they are self-evident. Duties, to truth, to right reason, to prudence, to sound conscience, to neighbour, so also to fairness and justice etc. Such built in law is not invented by parliaments or courts, nor can these principles and duties be abolished by such. (Cf. Cicero in De Legibus, c. 50 BC.) Indeed, it is on this framework that we can set out to soundly understand and duly balance rights, freedoms and duties; which is justice. The legitimate main task of government, then, is to uphold and defend the civil peace of justice through sound community order reflecting the built in, intelligible law of our nature. Where, as my right implies your duty a true right is a binding moral claim to be respected in life, liberty, honestly aquired property, innocent reputation etc. To so justly claim a right, one must therefore demonstrably be in the right. Thus, too, we may compose sound civil law informed by that built-in law of our responsibly, rationally free morally governed nature; from such, we may identify what is unsound or false thus to be reformed or replaced even though enacted under the colour and solemn ceremonies of law. These duties, also, are a framework for understanding and articulating the corpus of built-in law of our morally governed nature, antecedent to civil laws and manifesting our roots in the Supreme Law-giver, the inherently good, utterly wise and just creator-God.

    Without moral government, there is no reason.

    KF

  46. 46
    john_a_designer says:

    Sev @ 41,

    The point is quite simple. Who better to decide the moral codes that should apply to human societies or the rights that all members of those societies should enjoy than the human beings themselves? Human beings have demonstrated over thousands of years that they are capable of forming co-operative societies. It’s true that they have been far from perfect thus far but, if we look on the whole thing as a work-in-progress, there’s no reason not to keep trying.

    Most attempts at democracy have been an absolute disaster… How do you develop any kind of consensus with dishonest egotists want to subvert the system for their own subjective, greedy and selfish ends, if dishonesty, greed and egotism are not really morally wrong? How do you create a better society without a standard which tells us what kind of society is good, bad, better or best?

  47. 47
    asauber says:

    “Who better to decide the moral codes that should apply”

    Sev,

    This doesn’t explain why one code should be preferred over another.

    Andrew

  48. 48

    David P said: “I agree that has been true in the past but I would say the current administration is impervious to any correction. Impeachment only emboldened him. Seems to me the current administration is the one with an extreme agenda, upsetting checks and balance, grabbing for more power. I think reelecting them would do more harm than the radical protesters.”

    I would be interested in hearing your reasons for thinking this about the current administration.

  49. 49
    kairosfocus says:

    AS, moral government is built in as goverrning rationality itself, inescapably:

    We can readily identify at least seven inescapable first duties of reason. Inescapable, as they are so antecedent to reasoning that even the objector implicitly appeals to them; i.e. they are self-evident. Duties, to truth, to right reason, to prudence, to sound conscience, to neighbour, so also to fairness and justice etc. Such built in law is not invented by parliaments or courts, nor can these principles and duties be abolished by such. (Cf. Cicero in De Legibus, c. 50 BC.) Indeed, it is on this framework that we can set out to soundly understand and duly balance rights, freedoms and duties; which is justice. The legitimate main task of government, then, is to uphold and defend the civil peace of justice through sound community order reflecting the built in, intelligible law of our nature. Where, as my right implies your duty a true right is a binding moral claim to be respected in life, liberty, honestly aquired property, innocent reputation etc. To so justly claim a right, one must therefore demonstrably be in the right. Thus, too, we may compose sound civil law informed by that built-in law of our responsibly, rationally free morally governed nature; from such, we may identify what is unsound or false thus to be reformed or replaced even though enacted under the colour and solemn ceremonies of law. These duties, also, are a framework for understanding and articulating the corpus of built-in law of our morally governed nature, antecedent to civil laws and manifesting our roots in the Supreme Law-giver, the inherently good, utterly wise and just creator-God.

    That is part of what is being ducked.

    KF

  50. 50
    john_a_designer says:

    Human beings are somehow uniquely hardwired cognitively in three distinct ways:

    *1. We are hardwired to seek and discern the truth. For example, we have an intrinsic if not innate ability to accurately use logic and reason.

    *2. We are hardwired to seek purpose and meaning, including ultimate purpose and meaning.

    *3. We are hardwired as moral beings. Only human beings can discern good and bad, good or evil, ought and ought not.

    Is this all the result of some mindless, undirected and random evolutionary process? Or, is there something else? Another explanation? I think that there is evidence that there is and the evidence is human nature itself. What about human nature is the evidence? I’ve just listed it for you. See 1 through 3 above.

  51. 51
    Truthfreedom says:

    Keep up the good work, UD.
    We’re almost there.
    https://www.tfp.org/the-counter-revolution/

Leave a Reply