Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Defenders of Evil in the Dark

"Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil" Isaiah 5:20

Every conspiracy theory by Anti-War activists and 9/11 Truthers has one thing in common. It calls good, evil... and evil, good. Its overriding message is that America is the center of all the world's evil. We are the imperialists. We are the colonizers and the occupiers. When terrorists kill us, we're the ones responsible. Either because we angered them, or because secretly we were the ones who did it. When we die, it's because we're sheep who deserve what we get. When we fight back, it's because we're amoral monsters.

Their worldview is founded on that one single rock. The bedrock of their hate. The conspiracy theories they believe only feed that hate. They need to believe in them, for the same reason that murderers need to believe that their victims are plotting against them. Because it justifies the poisonous blackness that flows through their minds.

They cannot mourn the dead of the attacks of September 11, the way decent Americans can. Because that would force them to look upon those men and women as human beings. And to stop their demented attacks on their country for at least a single night. Instead they hijack commemorations, they mock the dead, they spread claims that the dead are really alive and that they were in on it all along. They bring their bumper stickers and their banners. They sneer gleefully at the pain they cause to others. "The Sheeple," as they call them.

What drives them is the same thing that drives the Westboro cult protesters. To justify their hate by completely dehumanizing their targets. And in the process, they themselves become less than human. Ghoulish creatures fed by hate, spreading their lies through every vector. Like most conspiracy theories, the lies themselves don't matter. The details are ornamentation to make the lie more believable. But the lie itself is superfluous. It's not really about the temperature at which steel melts. It is about the twisted minds of those who cannot accept a world in which America is the victim of a foreign attack-- rather than the enemy, the perpetrator, the Red, White and Blue devil that must be torn down and stamped into the dust.

Such conspiracy theories are not new. Every major attack on Americans in the 20th century, from the sinking of the Lusitania to Pearl Harbor to the Pueblo Incident all follow the same pattern. The enemy, whether it's the German military, Imperial Japan, North Korea or Al Qaeda are always in the right. And America is always in the wrong. We are always the bad guys. And the bad guys, are always the good guys.

America goes about its imperialistic ways, offending benevolent Nazis and Communists who never intended us any harm. And then when we push those noble mass murderers too far and they finally fight back against us, they're there to stand up for the poor downtrodden tyrants and expose all the lies that the government tells us. Someone had to stand up for Uncle Adolf and Uncle Joe, and Uncle Osama-- a late addition to the nuclear family. Someone who knows that the real enemy isn't Adolf, Joe or Osama-- but that unrepentant villain, Uncle Sam.

Anti-War activists helped set this pattern in WW1, boiling together a stewpot of conspiracy theories that attracted everyone from racists to anarchists and socialists. That stewpot converted Henry Ford into a raving lunatic obsessed with the Jews and international banks. The same thing was repeated again in WW2. In an outbreak of utter madness, British dockworkers during WW2 were told that American GI's weren't coming to fight the Nazis, but to suppress labor protests. For the next 50 years, the left went on repeating it to mobilize opposition to the US presence in Western Europe.

The Truthers are not a new phenomenon, but a very old one. Their ideological ancestors spread rumors that Washington's men had begun the Great Fire of New York. Today they claim that Bush's men blew up the World Trade Center. The basic narrative hasn't changed much across some two centuries. Only the location has moved across the river. There's more pretend science in the mix now, but all the cardboard models and temperature talk, it's not about the science. It's about the hate. Their hate for everything that America is. They may and do dress it up in talk of the Constitution or civil liberties. But the only people whose civil liberties they support, are those who tear down the country.

Like Hitler and Stalin shaking hands, follow a circle far enough at either end and you wind up with two reflections of the same thing. The Bush Administration was a time when the left and the far right realized that they had more in common than they thought. For all their disagreements, they had one vital point of consensus. They both agreed that America was evil. Abominable. A monstrous regime on the verge of turning into the next Hitler. And so they formed their own little Hitler-Stalin pact. Pat Buchanan joined the Anti-War movement. The same media which regularly opined that anyone to the right of Clinton was the devil, suddenly found a lot of good things to say about Ron Paul. The Anti-War movement had become bipartisan, in the sense that it consisted of two groups of people who wouldn't spit on an American soldier if he were on fire.

Most though never went all the way. It was one thing to claim that the terrorists had a point and that we had provoked them. To call for freeing the terrorists and sending them back home. Even to demonize the military was okay, so long as you did it carefully under the guise of concerns about civil liberties. All that could pass. But Truthers were a bridge too far. Because on that day, millions of Americans had watched 3,000 people being murdered in cold blood. And trifling with that was still dangerous. Like protesting at a soldier's funeral, it wasn't for everyone.

But for those like Alex Jones, it was a gold mine. Some did it for the money. And there was and is good money to be made in promoting this stuff. Books and DVD's to be sold. Conferences to be organized. For others, it was political. 9/11 Trutherism was the ultimate way to project their vision of America as an absolutely evil regime. If America could be blamed for 9/11. Then it could be blamed for anything. Anything at all. And that was the point.

9/11, like the Holocaust, represents an almost insurmountable historical obstacle to specific groups of people. Most choose to avoid confronting it head on. Or limit their criticism to sideline attacks, as Michael Moore did in Farenheit 9/11. But some choose to push straight through. Turning the attacks of September 11 from a crime against America-- into a crime by America, is the goal here. To erase Muslim terrorists from the picture, as a distraction from their overriding message. That America is evil. Irredeemably evil. So evil that it is the real enemy, not some people living in caves overseas.

The more mainstream left reacted by equating Bush and Republicans with the Taliban. One of the more famous such responses early on was a book cover which photoshopped Bush in Taliban garb. A more recent notorious example was Grayson's Taliban Dan ad. This line of attack has been fairly standard among left wing movements through the 20th century. Its underlying argument is that the same evils that exist abroad, also exist in America. And so there's no call to go fighting them overseas. There are American Taliban right there in the form of Christian conservatives, and we should be fighting them instead.

The left had followed this line with the Holocaust by turning the Jews into the "New Nazis". Americans accordingly were the new Taliban. Standard moral equivalence which shifts victims into perpetrators, and eventually turns perpetrators into victims.

But for the far left and the far right, it wasn't enough to merely equate the two. They had to show that there was no Muslim enemy. Just a phantom foe created by our real enemy. Bush and his various puppetmasters. Such a line of thinking makes Trutherism inevitable. It makes it positively mandatory. For their worldview to hold up, there can only be one great enemy. And that enemy is the United States of America.

9/11 Truthers followed the same line that Holocaust deniers had. They began with the "bridge". The bridge is the element of their argument that crosses the gap from a more mainstream radical critique to a denial position. On the Holocaust, the "bridge" has been the claim, popular among some on the left, that Jews were complicit in Nazism. Pushed a little further, this turns Nazis into agents of the Jews. Which then leads to the claim that the Holocaust never really happened and was the work of a Jewish conspiracy.

The 9/11 Truther bridge was the claim that America had backed the Taliban and armed Al Qaeda. This allowed them to position Muslim terrorists as agents of America. The next step over the bridge, was to move to arguing that America carried out the attacks of September 11. Not only were we the "New Taliban", but we were the Taliban all along. And Al Qaeda and Hamas and all of them rolled into one. Like a magic carpet, we become our own enemies. There are never any real enemies but the secret forces running the country. The secret forces who turn out to be much the same groups who showed up in WW1 conspiracy theories.

The denial mongerers have never had a single original idea since World War I. The various technological twists added on, conceal the rottenness of the superstructure which is still based around 19th century obsessions with secret elite organizations, Freemasonry, the Jews, the banks and the currency. Russia Today, which is funded by Putin's KGB regime, purveys virtually the same conspiracy theories as the Okhrana, the Czarist secret police, the originators of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, did and as the NKVD and KGB did before and after the Cold War. The difference is that they do it digitally.

Russia Today is a fairly clear example of enemy propaganda, which Americans participate in distributing. But it's only the more obvious of the examples, because it's so out in the open. Too obvious for the people who can fashion a global conspiracy out of a dropped microphone, but not look at who is actually funding the videos talking eagerly about the breakup of America or the imminent collapse of the dollar. But to them, our enemies are always in the right. And we are always in the wrong. And that is what it really comes down to. That belief.

It has never been about the facts, but about the fanatic zeal to conduct a campaign of hate against America. Whether it's the 9/11 Truthers, the Anti-War protests or the Westboro Baptist Church-- you can always see the hate. You can smell it. The curled lips. The bared teeth. The mocking grins. The defacing of American symbols. The predictions of doom. All those come out of a darkness in the soul. They have found their enemy. And we are it. That single destructive impulse characterizes their entire political worldview.

There is no reasoning with them. Because there is no reasoning with hate. Hate is by its very nature irrational. You can only banish it. Turn your back to it. And leave in the darkness of its own making. Because where others see light, they can only see their own darkness.


Paul said...

"Anti-War activists helped set this pattern in WW1, boiling together a stewpot of conspiracy theories that attracted everyone from racists to anarchists and socialists. That stewpot converted Henry Ford into a raving lunatic obsessed with the Jews and international banks."

It's really hard to believe that you imagine Ford was not antisemitic long before WWI. Next you'll be telling us Joeseph Kennedy suffered similar damage to turn him into the same beast. They were both raised that way for the same reasons.

There are some real passions out there making trouble for what's left of the free world. I think it is a little more complicated than just hate. False convictions based on derelict beliefs make people available for provocation in the face of more convincing realities. The mechanisms of these perverse reactions, the "truthers" and the rest, really are the result of a kind of provocation, but it's nobody's fault if reality is a source of rage and frustration for them. The innocence of the US as a country and as a people in the face of its aggressors is easily observed.

But a lot of things are easily observed. Slavery was wrong. We fought a civil war against it to correct our failure to purge it in the foundation of this country. We have plenty of real home grown terrorists. Anti-abortionists waged a campaign of terror that has only undergone a cease fire in the face of a stirred federal anti-terror posture. We did support Muslims in Afghanistan because they were seen as being morally superior to the communists they were fighting.

Probing the past and present for conspiracies is a good idea. It is important enough to excite false conclusions and for those possessing false convictions, posing conspiracies in others is an irrisistable temptation.

Mark W. said...

This was a brilliant post.

I have to be honest about something though. Even as a Canadian, I've harboured a fair amount of hate for terrorists - those who aid them - and the religious foundations on which they base their attacks.

By this I mean that I make no bones about recognizing the origin of the terrorists' hate: Islam. Not Islamism, but Islam. And I hate that religion - but I'd say for rational reasons.

Its founder, Mohammed, was involved in over 70-something armed conflicts, wherein he raped, pillaged, murdered and stole his way to prominence.
I recall that even the Muslim Hadith by Sahih al- Bukhari records an instance where Mohammed sanctioned the assassination of a poet who satirized him - and allowed the assassin to feign friendship to the target in order to get closer to him.

By my own research it has become increasingly clear that Islam is not a "hijacked" religion. Rather, terrorism and martyrdom were merely the logical outworking of a plain reading of the Koranic text, observation of the Sunnah, and understanding of the Hadith. I understood this fact at the age of 12, because I took the time to read.

*I understand you've obviously never described Islam as a 'hijacked' religion. I'm not arguing with anything you've said. I'm merely being honest in the fact that, "yes, I have some hatred for Islam and the terrorists it produces."

I wonder if my hatred, then, is irrational. Do tell; I welcome debate or constructive criticism.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...


Henry Ford himself attributed his anti-semitism to his time campaigning against WW1.


Nothing irrational about it. It's natural to feel that way about people who are trying to kill you and your loved ones, out of greed, power and their own hate.

HermitLion said...

The last picture really makes me want to inject some sense directly into this deranged female's brain. This is the face of 'the enlightened', and their burning, irrational hate.

Which is what Mark was trying to say, I believe: that some forms of hate are rational, and others aren't.
Perhaps it's just nitpicking about words, but you did say in the article that "hate is by its very nature irrational".
It seems rational to hate (or despise, loath, and abhor) those who wish death for your loved-ones, as long as they continue to do so.
On the other hand, it seems irrational to hate those who make days and nights risking their lives, so you could walk out in the street, wearing a cheap tank-top with overgrown sunglasses, and scream like the spoiled, entitled, warped-minded psychopath that you are!

JimP said...

Brilliant post. I like the syllogism you diagrammed with the "bridge" analogy. Never thought of it in those terms.

By the way found your blog through Larry Auster's View from the Right.

Terrific stuff here.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...


emotions are irrational, but they can have rational grounds. In the same way that religious faith is irrational, but can have rational grounds.

That is to say, you can rationally defend the basis for a particular emotional attitude, but emotion itself is not rational.

To hate someone who is trying to kill you is rational behavior, but the actual experience of that emotion is not rational, because it's an emotional experience.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...


Glad you came by. And thanks.

Anonymous said...

Interestingly enough, Russia Today is shown on PBS, which is partially funded by the U.S.Government.

Keli Ata said...

Slightly OT but I was reading a phamphlet on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and resilience factors:

1. Seeking out support from other people, such as friends and family.

2.Finding a support group after a traumatic event

3. Having a coping strategy, or way of getting through the bad event and learning from it.

The fourth is what we as Americans need to learn:


One of the treatment modalities is cognitive restructuring, to help people over come feelings of guilt and shame about what is not their fault.

I think that's how we can best respond to atrocities such as 9/11. Thankfully, there are more good people who know that it was not our fault and we have nothing to feel guilty about.

I agree with you. There's little we can do to influence the hate of these 9/11 conspiracy theorists or truthers.

They are just evil people and seem content to repeat the sins of the past. I'd lay bets that they're also anti-Semitic and Holocaust deniers, too. They just seem to wallow in filth and darkness.

HermitLion said...


Thanks for clarifying. So, the point is that the reasons for hate (rational or not) are irrelevant - once someone is at that state, there's no reasoning with him.
To which I wholeheartedly agree. The most you can get from people who hate X (let's say Jews) by acting in ways that break their stereotype, is something along the line of "to me, you're not a Jew" (and I had friends in the IDF who received that dubious compliment from Arabs).

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...


In many cases yes. These kinds of ideas appeal to people for a reason.


A Jew to them is a construct. But that's more the case with prejudice. Hatred is much more pervasive.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the recent articles. I live in Portland, OR and the pandering to the Muslim community since the thwarted bombing last week is absolutely sickening. The local Muslim community has actually gone on the offense. Not a word of apology to the intended victims, only outrage at the FBI and moaning and wailing about their safety and the lack of support for disaffected immigrant youth who are so easily radicalized by all the deprivations of their new homeland.

Paul said...

HermitLion, I think rationality is not necessarily a good measure of the justification of one's emotions, which I think is what you are looking for. Emotions, whether be hatred or love, are more oriented towards convictions rather than reasoning. Reasoning is also oriented around beliefs and this is why keeping track of people's beliefs are so important. Terrorists and their enablers are also capable of love, but the objects of their affections are bound to be as misplaced as the objects of their hatred.

It is beliefs that can be irrational, the rest follows from them.

Anonymous said...

SK this shouldn't surprise you. read this

Pakistan won't stop supporting terrorist groups because they use them against India. Therefore the solution given is reduce what little support the US gives to India a country that isn't involved in international terrorism. So basically may be the US dumps Pakistan's primary terror target, Pakistan will somehow be less involved in terrorism overall and involved in terrorism that hits the US. Appease, throw under the bus other countries who are victims of terrorism for decades before the US and maybe they'll stop killing us.

Anonymous said...

Also what is troubling is why is what Pakistan wants more important than what Afghanistan and India want? If Afghanistan wants a relationship with India and if India wants a relationship with Afghanistan (and historically they had a good relationship prior to Pakistan getting involved with Afghanistan against the Soviets) why shouldn't they be just because Pakistan doesn't want like it and will use terrorism against both Afghanistan and India to stop it. It is foolish for anyone in the US or elsewhere to think letting Pakistan dictate Afghan-India relationship via terrorism will somehow protect the US from the same terrorism. All it does is place a terrorist state Pakistan's priorities above the victims of Pakistani terrorism, India, and Afghanistan. Afghanistan can't have a relationship with India because Pakistan wants Afghanistan to remain under its rule.

HermitLion said...


As you must've noticed, I got a little confused from Sultan's closing line, since, like you said, we don't merely fight hate, but hate that stems from certain beliefs, and it is those beliefs we stand against - rationally, or irrationaly.

But truth be told, beliefs rarely can be changed through reasoning, especially when dealing with large groups that constantly reinforce their stand, so there is no way to 'take out the hate', and I couldn't care less if people who hate America are capable of loving the likes of Ahmadinejad and Castro.

Rationality is also a flexible term, because what makes sense to one person doesn't make sense to another. I think judging people by the way they place their emotions is just as valid as judging their perceived rationality. Sometimes the two are the same.

Paul said...

HermitLion, I agree.

Beliefs cannot be easily changed by reasoning alone, although this is the best place to do it before experience points out what reasoning should have done in advance. This is the practical job of reasoning and I think that even other animals besides humans are capable of some kind of reasoning. And so what else is a brain for? Of course experience should be the most influential force in the changing of beliefs. If people believed that the world was flat, then the experience of other people, reliably reported to the rest, should be sufficient to change those beliefs and, indeed, purge such beliefs from people everywhere. The world is not flat, it is most certainly round.

But, as you say, large groups can serve to eclipse experience from tempering or tearing down false beliefs and so even where individuals might be vulnerable to seeing beyond group-think where it enforces false belief, such individuals are easily suppressed and put down, even in supposedly free societies such as our own. A culture that is brutal enough, like Iran, is quite capable of suppressing even the undeniable observations of a child as in "The Emporer's New Clothes". No doubt even such a child would be executed.

HermitLion said...


Just to clarify, I wasn't saying reasoning always fails. Humanity as a whole had achieved great leaps through reasoning, research, and so forth, but consciousness needs to be ready for a change, in order for that change to take place. In your example, any man bringing proof of the world not being flat, in a society not willing to hear of such 'heresy', would be executed as an apostate.

And in an atmosphere of conflict, where at least one side is zealously righteous, reasoning does very little. Even those that consider themselves intellectuals and men of reason, reject evidence and facts brought by those they do not respect (and that lack of respect stems more from prejudice and emotion, than reason), so you can see how very few left-wingers - or right-wingers - ever change camps, even when shaken by a great event (like 9/11 for Americans, or the repeated Intifadas and terrorist attacks in Israel).
I'm not even mentioning muslims, who are so well entrenched in their own lies and conspiracy theories, as to turn any attempt at reasoning into a joke.

Ideally, among civilized men, I would've preferred to see reason and the pursuit of truth lead the way, but alas, in these times, other philosophies appear to reign supreme.

Paul said...

HermitLion, I have to disagree.

Reality does not sit around respecting people's beliefs. No matter how cultures try to isolate themselves from the natural world around them, it is unavoidable that their experience includes spontaneous events that effect members so that even the culture's most extreme enforcement is forced to buckle. Consider Galileo who observed that the earth rotated around the sun instead of the other way around. It was something anyone could observe and did. He was persecuted by the Catholic Church for sharing a truly universal truth, but in the end he was vindicated and the old earth centric beliefs were trodden underfoot.

The same thing happens when different cultures encounter each other. The beliefs of one call into question the beliefs of the other. The culture with the more legitimate beliefs endures, but only if one cannot dominate the other. This is why freedom of religion is so important in free societies. It allows the tempering or extinction of such beliefs according to their legitimacy. It is suprising where such legitimacy holds up. Consider the Amish versus the Muslims. The Amish recently sent a delegation, by air no less, to apologize in Israel to Jews for their former rejection of Jewish belief as illegitimate. At one time they even defended Adolph Hitler. No more.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

Galileo challenged the orthodoxy of the day. Eventually a new orthodoxy developed around his approach. Which was challenged in turn, and so on ad infinitum.

Contrary to the religion vs reason model, the scientific orthodoxy or consensus commonly persecutes those who think differently. We're seeing a snapshot of that now in the global warming debate, but it's gone on long after organized religion lost power.

Even when the challengers win, the result is not the triumph of reason, but the elevation of one ideological power structure over another.

The Amish delegation has been widely misreported. Its leader is not exactly mainstream among the Amish and has talked of being persecuted by Amish churches. Mennonite churches meanwhile continue to persecute Israel.

Paul said...

Science is not orthodoxy.

The experience of observing that the earth revolves around the sun instead of the other way around does not require a system of beliefs.

Confusing orthodoxy with science is itself a cult belief.

People share a common physical existence that rules over belief. No matter how passionately anyone possesses a belief, that common physical experience must always be the most compelling.

Science is not the triumph of reason. It is the triumph of experience.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

Scientific orthodoxy is the sum total of assumptions that define the science of a present day. It is science. Some of it accurately reflects reality. Some of it does not.

Observation is not pure, it is always subject to assumption and interpretation. Our practice of scientific methodology is an organized system of observing and interpreting that data in line with our assumptions, not a perfect window on reality.

HermitLion said...


I am not sure exactly on what do you disagree with me. You've said yourself that Galileo was persecuted by the church for challenging their believes.
It is not reality that disrespects beliefs, but the other way around. Reality can be denied easily - even when everything came crumbling down on the Nazi leadership, they still believed they would somehow triumph, and that a second Brandenburg miracle might save them.

So, I merely said reasoning sometimes works, but usually doesn't - between groups with conflicting beliefs. What part of that didn't sit well with you?

Paul said...

You are confusing the hand of Catholic authority in the practice of science with science itself.

Because of Catholic authority, the earth centric view of the universe was at one time considered "scientifically" true. The desperate arguments of the Catholic authorities against Galileo were "scientific" arguments, but they were nothing more than vain attempts to prop up the legitimacy of the tyranny of Catholic authority.

Galileo did not invent science, he merely made the observations that lay there waiting to be made and reported them to the public. Galileo did not invent the heliocentric version of the universe, he merely confirmed its validity by observation. His was the victory of scientific observation over the tyranny of scientific orthodoxy. Scientific orthodoxy, where it continues to exist, is a threat to scientific observation and, indeed, a threat to practical application of human intelligence to solve problems.

Daniel Greenfield @ the Sultan Knish blog said...

Catholic authority was not what I was discussing, scientific orthodoxy is. And it existed before and after Catholic authority.

Paul said...

HermitLion, we do not fundamentally disagree, I think.

"Even those that consider themselves intellectuals and men of reason, reject evidence and facts brought by those they do not respect (and that lack of respect stems more from prejudice and emotion, than reason), ..."

My point is that the rejection of evidence contradicting the beliefs of "men of reason" may or may not be a leisurely activity. Sometimes evidence is so utterly obvious that it cannot be ignored or refuted. Columbus's successful navigation to the West shattered many different beliefs about the nature of the world. There simply was no resistance possible to the direct experience of Columbus's team of explorers who came back and reported what they found. Columbus was a sailor, not a scientist, yet his discovery had scientific consequences and any othodoxy that existed about the structure of the world they stood on had no hope anywhere of resisting change. Orthodoxy is always weak and requires social reinforcement. Science is strong because it requires observation be confirmable by anyone, no matter what your beliefs are or who you are.

Daniel, this is not a true statement:

"Scientific orthodoxy is the sum total of assumptions that define the science of a present day. It is science. Some of it accurately reflects reality. Some of it does not."

Where you or anyone thinks that science does not accurately reflect reality, then there is where science must be challenged with new observations to replace or improve the observations where you or anyone thinks science has got it wrong. Just because scientific conclusions are challenged and defended does not mean they represent orthodoxy. Evolution, for example, is challenged by those that embrace the biblical explanation of Creation by God and they frequently cite debates among scientists about evolution where scientists disagree. And to convenience themselves and their beliefs, they ignore that these scientists, while debating fine points on the subject do not reject evolution as a fundamental force of biology, nor the compelling evidence that biological evolution represents the creation of life and not some supernatural act pulling all life as we know it out of thin air. Their debate is not the enforcement of orthodoxy. It is the soul of science, tempering the beliefs of scientists and struggling to see where to place new observations that either reinforce what we know or show us something new that strips away old conclusions. Experiencing new insights that dispose of old conclusions are part of the ecstacy of science.

And, therefore, this is a true statement:

"Observation is not pure, it is always subject to assumption and interpretation. Our practice of scientific methodology is an organized system of observing and interpreting that data in line with our assumptions, not a perfect window on reality."

HermitLion said...


I believe we simply covered different aspects of the same bigger picture. There was nothing you told me so far that made me feel any sense of disagreement with you.
Perhaps I made my statements too groping, but my 'men of reason' remark was directed at the self-involved leftists of today's academia, most of which tend to reject or reinterpret evidence that does not suit their own beliefs/ideas/theories. This approach is very dominant in mainstream Israeli academic institutions (at least when not dealing in hard science).

On a lighter note, I sure am glad Columbus wasn't jailed and stoned for his observations. That would've been a real shame :)

Paul said...

HermitLion, yes, of course. It isn't just science and the observations made there where people will ignore what is easy to observe in order to prop up their own beliefs. And certainly it isn't just the "left" that do that. Consider the numerous convictions expressed here that Nazi Germany was a leftist conspiracy and that Hitler was a leftist. This is simply not observable at all in history, nor is it easily observable among neo-Nazis now.

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