Category Archives: Polemics

Tech Wars

On display today is a series of lies and deceptive statements coming from Ars Technica to maintain credibility with the (leftist) mob. Like many pop culture “magazines”, the content is a kind of distillation of trash and gossip. The end of this article is to describe why one Markus “Notch” Perssons (the creator of Minecraft) was unwelcome at party for the 10th anniversary of his game. Apparently, his comments on Twitter “do not reflect [the opinions] of Microsoft”. Or Ars Technica.

Even before the article begins, the author’s byline says everything we need to know: “Transphobia, homophobia, and racism aren’t Microsoft’s core values”. However, not a single example is provided of any of those things.

So what are Perssons’ comments? We will get to those. What’s fascinating is the author of the article, his legionary horde of commentators, and their response.

For example, Perssons apparently made the comment that people face jail time for “using the wrong pronouns”. The author of the article calls this “false”. Politifact stumbles around like a drunkard trying to explain things away, but even this far-left “fact” checking website admits that there are fines for the California version of this bill. However, Canada has a much more open-ended version of this type of legislation, which can certainly lead to jail time. And then in the UK, someone is facing jail time now for this very thing. The author is on the “right side” of this issue, and so can make bald-faced lies.

Perssons also used a slogan sometimes used by the alt-right: “It’s OK to be white”. If you read the comments, you’ll find a contradiction brewing, but no one seems to notice it. The same people who condemn the statement have a lot of bad things to say about white people, including several oikophobes who say that they are doing well because of their skin color. The comment section is full of nasty things to say about white people, who have the “white privilege” of being subject to the comments and being disbarred from responding, lest they be accused of racism.

The author of the article goes further however, and simply assumes that there are “systemic racial biases and imbalance within Western society” by saying that this isn’t something Perssons merely disagrees with, but that he fails to recognize it. The author is again on the “right side” of the issue. He can make these assumptions because the mob already makes the same ones.

Perssons seems to go too far with this tweet: “If you’re against the concept of a #HeterosexualPrideDay, you’re a complete f****** c*** and deserve to be shot.”, but a glimpse at Twitter of some of the horrific things said by the LGBT+++ crowd against Christians is far, far worse, including real death threats. Such context would not help the case that Perssons is simply an insane person who hates people, so it is not provided.

So where was the “transphobia”, “homophobia”, and “racism” that the author promised was so obvious that Microsoft couldn’t risk being associated with Perssons? The comment section has defenders of the terms claiming that “phobia” doesn’t mean or imply fear, but instead “hate” or “discrimination”. These are open-ended terms that allows anyone who even merely disagrees with the forced celebration of same-sex acts or transgenderism to be called “transphobic” or “homophobic”. These are not useful words to have in a reasoned discussion; they are insults that bullies use to shame people.

There’s a cold war in technology today between those who want the freedom to say what they believe and those who, as part of the fascistic mob, want to destroy the lives and careers of those who disagree with them using lies and deception if necessary. Notch seems to belong to the former, which is a surprise to me. Peter Bright, the latter.

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Discrimination In the Fight Against Discrimination

The BBC has published an article to apologize for hiring people based on their skill instead of their sexual organs.

We’re in excellent company. Both inside and outside of the BBC, more journalists and editors are realising that, while the media didn’t invent gender bias, it has a key role in perpetuating it. The BBC’s director-general has announced a target of 50:50 across all of the BBC’s programmes and sites by April 2019. The challenge is also being piloted by media organisations in the US and Europe.

The article is like an encyclopedia for feminists. Here’s a gem from The Atlantic they quote:

“Women in science face a gauntlet of well-documented systemic biases. They face long-standing stereotypes about their intelligence and scientific acumen. They need better college grades to get the same prestige as equally skilled men, they receive less mentoring, they’re rated as less competent and less employable than equally qualified men, they’re less likely to be invited to give talks, they earn less than their male peers, and they have to deal with significant levels of harassment and abuse.”

As I wrote yesterday, the feminist angle is to ignore any of the interesting causes that might lie behind the effects they are seeing, and to instead assign a cause, namely sexism.

The author is careful to avoid mentioning the female-only scholarships, the female-oriented primary schools, the female advocacy articles (like this one) for cushy jobs. No women are demanding equal representation to work on oil rigs or fishing ships.

The only way the BBC can have equal representation of both sexes is to systematically hire on the basis of sex. They have quotas. If ten qualified people apply to the BBC for open positions, the BBC will first look at the sex of each of those people to determine whether they can be hired. This isn’t sexism or discrimination, apparently, because only men can be sexist, and only women can be targets. This is the very definition of an unequal measure and of unjust discrimination, but that’s a point that’s been safely ignored for decades.

We started to make gender-even sourcing a requirement in all our commissions, something requested of our writers along with a deadline and word count.

The BBC is admitting that the quality of a source is less important than the sex of the source. This is beyond virtue signalling and into clear social Marxism.

The try to counter this with nonsense:

To make it clear, we will continue to interview, and reference, the most qualified people. That hasn’t changed, and nothing about seeking out female voices undermines that.

“Yes, my job is to serve readers by finding the best sources for my stories, but why assume that the best source isn’t a woman?”

Notice the false framing. No one suggested that we ought to presume men are the best sources. We just don’t want to presume that the best sources are equally men and women. There’s no warrant for that whatsoever. The BBC knows this, but can’t admit it, so they hide behind a defense against an obviously flimsy argument that no one has made.

What’s astonishing here, even for me, is how little self-awareness the author of this article or any of the quoted sources are. For all the moaning about unequal percentages of the sexes in every single metric that can be conceived, the authors refuse to acknowledge that men and women might be different. They hold two* contradictory notions at the same time:

  1. Men and women are exactly the same.
  2. Men are oppressors and women are oppressed.

They are forced to affirm (1) out of reverence to their false god, Egalité. They are forced to affirm (2) out of their commitment to the cult of Feminism.

They’d rather hold a contradiction at the center of their worldview than admit that the differences we see between men and women on various metrics is a result of innate differences between men and women and not from some evil spirit of sexism that haunts and guides the world.

That the BBC is so bold as to publish an article like this reveals just how far into the cesspool we’ve fallen.


*Granted, there are other contradictions held as well (e.g. women are better than men, women are naturally good and men are naturally evil, etc).

Privilege and Character

Someone on CNN accused a conservative of white privilege yesterday. She was soon stunned into silence as he revealed that he was black.

The concept of privilege offers a glimpse into the minds of progressives. In it, we can see that envy is a guiding principle in Leftist philosophy. That’s because privilege is simply a way of casting good character in a negative light.

There’s a grain of truth in the leftist lie, as there is in many lies. The truth is that some people are more likely to succeed than others because of their pasts. A middle-aged man who has worked hard for two decades is privileged over a man who has never held a job and his lived on government welfare since he dropped out of high school. A child who has a married mother and father is more likely to succeed in school, marriage, and a career than the child of a single mother.

Historically, those who had strong character were admired. It was a good thing to make good, tough decisions that required sacrifice. It was good to work hard to privilege one’s children instead of squandering their inheritance. It was good to emulate men of honor and character.

Progressives have a different commitment, though. When someone is successful, progressives look on them with envy and suspicion. A man who succeeds must have done something wrong and crooked to get where he is. He must have stolen from someone or cheated someone or hurt someone.

The Left has classified the world in postmodern oppressor/oppressed categories, such that the more “oppressor” categories a person finds themselves in, the more suspicious we should be about any of their success. Where historically the important question was “how can we succeed?”, the Leftist asks “how can we tear someone down because of their skin color, sex, and beliefs?” The Left doesn’t build on the work of the past, but makes sure to destroy everything to preserve a flat wasteland of mediocrity and failure.

This is more insidious than presuming a man must have had his success by virtue of being white when he is actually black. The Leftist model actually encourages people they deem “oppressed” into behaviors which keep them poor, dependent, broken, and flailing. Instead of urging people in these groups to strive for the kind of character which leads to success, the Left encourages envy and hate. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy where the Left encourages the very behaviors that lead to the very situations they claim to champion against.

It also reveals some inherent racism on the Left. When a white man succeeds, its his “privilege” that does it. He comes naturally equipped for success. When a white man fails, it’s in spite of his “privilege”. The opposite is true of black men. They succeed in spite of their disadvantage of being black. And failure isn’t a big deal; it’s expected. After all, they are black. This explains why progressives are far, far more likely to talk down to minorities, even to the point of treating them like children.

I see this attitude even among lefty “conservative” women on subtly different topics. For example, I’ve made the strongly evidenced claim that women should marry before having children and stay married if they want the best possible outcome for their children. “Conservative” women were very quick to tell me how mean-spirited and cruel my suggestion was. Even though this is extremely good advice for young women, we can’t have it spoken aloud, lest the women who have already made mistakes feel bad. I have another post in mind for the topic of sympathy-as-hatred, but this example also fits here.

Calls to good character are condemned – by the Left as privilege and by some “conservatives” because it might make people feel bad. The real victims, though, are the people who could live much better lives by being encouraged to make good decisions who are instead told that the consequences of their actions are someone else’s fault.

The American Propaganda Assocation

The American Psychological Association just published this, and it’s breathtaking.

APA issues first-ever guidelines for practice with men and boys

The article is full of political claims that might as well have been spoken by Democrat operatives. A full display of ignorance regarding the economy and incentives is only matched by the total failure to understand (or even recognize) the differences between men and women – something a PSYCHOLOGY organization ought to have mastered.

But lets be honest. The APA doesn’t really care about science. It’s just a bunch of ideologues who are bad at philosophy doing philosophy while pretending to be scientists.

This should have already been obvious since they’ve changed their categories for mental illness in response to threats from lobbyists.

Unlike real medicine where there are observable facts like “this leg is broken”, the APA gets to define “health” in any arbitrary way they want. They’ve settled on pure relativism: mental health is what ever you, the patient, want it to be. Imagine a surgeon asking you what you consider a “healthy heart” and then doing whatever you ask in the operating room.

Replace “surgeon” with “therapist” and “heart” with “mind”, and that’s exactly what the APA defines as mental health. That’s why they don’t say pedophilia is a mental illness, but -guilt- about pedophilia is. Because guilt is bad (you don’t want it), but unnatural desires are good (they are things you want).

The APA has outdone themselves with this far-left-feminist-ideology-as-science though. As someone who has studied and worked in hard science fields, my intelligence is under assault every time I read anything this organization publishes.

h/t Captain Capitalism

Presuppositional Apologetics as a Weak Point

This post will be brief, but I’ll still provide a disclaimer: Theologically conservative Reformed churches are Christian churches, and this topic is an internal one between fellow Christians. I myself am not a Calvinist (for what I believe are very good reasons), but I don’t deny that Calvinists have true Christian faith. With that out of the way…

Reformed theologian Cornelius Van Til developed the concept of presuppositional apologetics (PA from here on out in this post) as a result of his theological work. When you combine the central tenets of Calvinism and push them to their most extreme form, you end up with the view that nothing in the entire world can be properly understood without the “light of the main doctrines of Christianity”, in Van Til’s words. In his mind, there is no such thing as a neutral ground of reason where both Christian and non can debate ideas. Even offering evidences outside of Christianity thus grants non-Christians their own presuppositions, meaning an apologist fails before he starts*.

If PA is the naturally outworking of a fully formed Reformed theological system, though, we have a problem. The Bible has many accounts where evidence is offered to non-Christians. The context of these passages makes it clear that such evidence is offered to convince people of the truth of Christianity (Jesus does this, for example, with His miracles and His fulfillment of prophecy. Paul does it as well, “reasoning” with the Greeks).

That means Jesus Himself and the Apostles don’t seem to understand the importance of PA, which is unattested in Scripture. More likely, Jesus and the Apostles do not see the value in PA (if they did, they presumably would have used that tactic).

This isn’t just a problem for PA, though. If PA really is the logical outworking of a strong Calvinist theology, then to reject PA is to reject the theological framework which necessitates it. That makes PA a huge liability for extreme Calvinists:

  • Logical conclusion of reformed theology -> Presuppositional apologetics
  • Presuppositional apologetics are not Biblical (it is both not attested, and its inverse offering evidence is well attested)
  • Therefore the logical conclusion of reformed theology is not Biblical
  • (Modus Tollens: P -> Q. Not Q. Therefore not P)

 


*I once got into an argument on social media with (Calvinist) James White, only to have my faith impugned because I didn’t agree with PA. This view really is the logical outworking of Calvinism, so much so that it seems to hold its own against doctrines like the Divinity of Christ and His death by the cross when some Calvinists determine if people are genuine in their faith.

Double Standards – Round 2

A gossip forum picked up the defense of Lori Alexander’s article on what men prefer in marriage, and one of the commenters issued this thoughtful response:

“I married a good man. His father is a good man. And you know what? They wouldn’t be caught associating with a whiny bunch of man-children, who spend their days complaining about how unfair life is.”

If a man prefers sexual purity in his future wife, he goes against the Gospel, and women are permitted to complain about how unfair he is.

If a man says life is unfair or complains, he’s worthy only to be mocked. You can be sure this woman would advise against marrying him.

The double standards never cease.

The Gospel Coalition Guide to Undermining Christian Marriage

(h/t to bdash 77 over at Dalrock’s blog)

The Gospel Coalition has published a step-by-step guide on how to reject the Biblical rules for marriage and then, to throw off anyone orthodox enough to try and stop you, they demonstrate how to hide your tracks with bombast and exaggeration. There’s an epidemic of men locking their wives in closets! (pay no attention to the conspicuous lack of lawsuits)

“A Hidden Epidemic God Hates”, written by one Steve Hoppe on May 11th of this year, begins with what appears to be a horror movie still and this quote, which is also meant to scare you:

Tom micromanages his wife Sarah’s physical appearance to fit his personal tastes. He picks out her clothes, tells her how she can do her hair, and restricts her diet so she remains thin. When Sarah confronts him on his controlling behavior, he cites Ephesians 5:22: “Wives, submit to your husbands, as to the Lord.”

The word “submit” appears only once in this article, and it’s in this opening paragraph. Steve never addresses Ephesians 5:22. In fact, he never cites a single passage in the Bible regarding marriage to make his case.

Sarah, if she is a real person, doesn’t want to submit to her husband when it comes to her physical appearance or her diet. Whatever it is that constitutes her diet, it apparently keeps her healthy, though she is described as “thin” so we don’t accidentally misread this attempt at a horror story. Sarah obeys her husband, as she is commanded in Scripture. This obedience is framed as victimhood.

A real Sarah – Abraham’s wife – was praised by the Apostle Paul himself for her obedience. She planned to commit adultery at the request of her husband (it’s the only example of her obedience we have). Paul apparently doesn’t have the insights of The Gospel Coalition. Had he known what they know, he would have condemned Abraham for his spiritual abuse, rather than praise Sarah for her obedience. As we’ll soon see, Steve condemns husbands who ask for sex even for themselves, so this isn’t a stretch.

Miranda is an overprotective mother. She homeschools her 17-year-old daughter, Kate, to prevent her from being exposed to rebellious teenagers. She won’t allow her to play sports, attend dances, or get her driver’s license. She cites 1 Corinthians 15:33 as her justification for parenting this way: “Bad company corrupts good character.”

The only thing noteworthy in this story is the use of the term “overprotective mother”. I presume Steve had to include the term “overprotective”, else readers would scratch their heads wondering what was wrong here.

Bill forces his wife Angie to have sex against her will. He’s rough in bed and occasionally strikes her when they’re being intimate. He cites 1 Corinthians 7:4 as his allowance for doing so: “For the wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does.”

“Force” is an interesting term in a relationship in which sex is pledged at the start. Steve has decided, for whatever reason, not to use the clearest passage in Scripture regarding sexual duties, that being the next verse: “Do not deprive each other except perhaps by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.”

I suppose if he included the full context, then a wife who had to be forced against her will to have sex would clearly be a wife rebelling against her husband and God.

All three of these stories are attempts by the author to illustrate “spiritual abuse”. What are his specific examples of spiritual abuse? If nothing else, they are revealing. Here are some of the more interesting selections:


Physically harming you.

There’s no limits on this one. Spanking a child or slapping a face are both “spiritual abuse” here. Forget about the rod of Proverbs.

Pressuring you to engage in sexual activity.

A wife can apparently deny her husband sexual activity for the duration of their marriage, and not be guilty of spiritual abuse. After all, as Steve explicitly states, spiritual abuse can only occur when someone is in spiritual authority over someone else. That would always be husbands. Wives are not even capable of spiritual abuse. They can disobey every command regarding sex and remain innocent here, while their husbands can ask just one time too many and be condemned.

Insulting you or calling you names.

Insulting or calling names seems fair enough, until you consider that both are easy accusations for anything you don’t like to hear. “You called me fat!” is an insult and a name, and an obvious accusation to make when your husband suggests you go on a diet. Speaking of…

Forcing you to diet or exercise.

Heaven forbid. Steve has a particular problem with evil husbands demanding that their wives stay healthy.

Threatening you.

This makes most of Scripture a form of spiritual abuse. God threatens people all the time. God’s prophets make threats. Christ’s Apostles make threats. If you are forbidden from making threats, you cannot exercise spiritual authority. You can only passively wait for people to listen to you if they choose to, which puts the authority in those who are commanded to submit. This role-reversal is a common feminist Christian tactic.

Restricting your ability to access financial information.

I’ve known several marriages that have ended when the husband or the wife (almost always the wife) has spent money behind her husband’s back and bankrupted the family. Apparently, a husband who seeks real safeguards to this is abusive.

 

Preventing you from working.

Are you noticing a theme here? Any time a husband wants his wife to do something, any time a husband expects his wife to submit to him about something, it is a form of spiritual abuse. Steve doesn’t provide a single meaningful example of a husband who has spiritual authority over his wife acting in a practical way.

Telling you what you can and cannot say in small groups, church, or other social settings.

This is too all-encompassing. Are we really to presume that parents can’t tell their children what to say when they are around other adults?

Locking you in rooms, closets, or basements.

This one is meant to shock you. It’s meant to catch you off guard in case you’ve been questioning this list.

Taking away your access to transportation.

Grounding your child is a form of spiritual abuse.

Blocking your contact with counselors, mentors, or other spiritual figures.

Does this include Imams? How about psychologists who advise your wife to divorce you because she is unhappy?

Punishing you for your sins.

Remember the book of Proverbs? Every time it provides instructions for disciplining your children, it’s actually teaching you how to spiritually abuse them.


 

It became apparent to me, as I read through this article, that Steve wasn’t sure if he was writing against husbands who exercise their spiritual authority or for parents who exercise authority over their children. I suspect he came up with his definition and realized it applied to parents, so he tossed in a story about an overprotective mother and then forgot that near half of his examples of spiritual abuse are actually things that are commanded for parents when dealing with their children.

It goes further, though. Wives are commanded to submit to their husbands in the same way children are. A wife is not a child and isn’t to be treated as a child, but she is in the same position of spiritual submission. Many of these supposed forms of spiritual abuse, then, are simply real acts that a spiritual authority can use over those he oversees.

Steve hates these things, but Steve hating these things isn’t very profound. He needs to find a way to say that God hates these things. So what does he do?

In Titus 1, Paul rebukes Jewish Christians who were teaching heresy for selfish gain (sounds a lot like spiritual abuse, doesn’t it?):

For there are many who are insubordinate, empty talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision party. They must be silenced, since they are upsetting whole families by teaching for shameful gain what they ought not to teach. . . . They profess to know God, but they deny him by their works. They are detestable, disobedient, unfit for any good work. (Titus 1:10–11,16)

God detests spiritual abuse.

He finds a passage that has nothing to do with marriage or parenting and claims it applies to the home. Condemning heresy is framed as an equivalent to condemning patriarchal family structures and the acts which enforce that structure. This doesn’t work, though.

He should have chosen a different passage for another reason. Part of Paul’s condemnation of these heretics is that they are “insubordinate”. They refuse to submit. This passage is the condemnation of insubordination to real spiritual authorities, not of spiritual authority wielded for selfish gain.

Pastors and church leaders, it’s long past time we stand up against all forms of abuse. This includes spiritual abuse in the church and the home. Domestic spiritual abuse is far more common than you think. It hurts innocent sheep daily. It destroys the fabric of families and churches.

Steve ends his post against the role of husbands in marriage by calling pastors to help him bring down the patriarchy. Having established that spiritual abuse just is that set of acts which give teeth to spiritual authority, his condemnation of spiritual abuse and his call to arms is an inquisition into any real forms of spiritual hierarchy in the churches of his readers. Since only men can be spiritual abusers in marriage, only wives can be the victims of spiritual abuse. In this way, Steve has found the ultimate Christianesque form of a get-out-of-marriage-free card. Wives need only identify a single example of their husbands attempting to exercise spiritual authority and BAM, spiritual abuse.

Without even feigning respect for the passages of Scripture that describe how Christian husbands and wives are to live together, he condemns them all. After all, who cares about Paul when we have these millions of women locked up in cages?