On The Hatred Of The Left

The left often accuses the social and political right – and particularly evangelical Christians – of being hateful and intolerant.  As a conservative blogger, believe me, I can give examples!

I’m often left astonished by such visceral anger.  If I were leaving a comment on Osama bin Laden’s blog, I doubt that I could muster up more hostility than I have often received from secular humanist/atheist liberals (and for what it’s worth, while I do a variety of reading in pursuit of supporting articles and illustrations, as a general rule I only leave comments on articles that I find well written and insightful).

I want to get at something that has occurred to me.

When I as a typical conservative and evangelical Christian meet a secular humanist, atheist homosexual (as a particularly extreme example), do I think he’s wrong?  Of course I think he’s wrong.  Do I think he’s evil?  You’re darned right I do (although I do make a distinction, for instance, between homosexuals who feel trapped by an addictive behavior they can’t control and don’t want and militant homosexual activists who are determined to advance their agenda on society).  And, of course, as I point out in my first paragraph, such a militant leftist most definitely thinks I’M wrong and I’M evil.

Are we at an impasse then, where we both think the other evil?

No.  We do not.  Let me explain briefly why the left’s hatred rises to an entirely different level, and has nothing to restrain or mitigate it.

As a Christian, I believe in the doctrine of original sin.  I believe that humans have a sin nature, that there’s something that has been corrupted in our souls since the Fall.  But the liberals with whom I am most at war do not believe any such thing.

Leftists – who reject the Bible – continue to believe in the Classical view that evil is a problem of lack of knowledge, rather than a moral problem of the will.

St. Paul wrote in Romans 7:19, “For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.”

Dinesh D’Souza, in his magnificent book, What’s So Great About Christianity, says:

Here Paul in a single phrase repudiates an entire tradition of classical philosophy founded in Plato.  For Plato, the problem of evil is a problem of knowledge.  People do wrong because they do not know what is right.  If they knew what was right, obviously they would do it.  But Paul denies that this is so.  His claim is that even though he knows something is wrong, he still does it.  Why?  Because the human will is corrupt.  The problem of evil is not a problem of knowledge but a problem of will (page 55-56).

Here’s the point: I believe that the leftist secular humanist who directly opposes the Judeo-Christian worldview is evil.  But I also believe that there is evil in me, too.  In fact, it’s BECAUSE of that evil that is in me that I need a Savior in the Person and work of Jesus Christ.

And I look at even the most bitter, hateful, downright mean secular humanist and can therefore say as a result of my worldview, “There but for the grace of God go I.”  I know that even though I have a new spiritual nature imbued by the Holy Spirit, I still have to continue to deal with my fallen will while I inhabit this earth.  And because of that, I can take pity on those who are themselves under the sway of evil.

But the leftist does not have that font to draw from.  Moreover, the very fact that I believe it further qualifies me as “evil” in their eyes.  They deny the depravity of the human will as an objective reality, and argue that the very thing that gives me the basis for my compassion is an evil thing.  They are only too willing to point out the evil that is in me, but they cannot or will not see the evil in themselves.

The thesis that evil is a problem of lack of knowledge held by many leftists also doesn’t hold up.  Take me as an example: I went to public school, and I have a university degree from a secular university.  I learned the same things they learned, and yet I think very differently than they.  On a grander scale, take Nazi Germany: Germany was the most educated and intellectual society on the face of the earth.  It was also the most scientifically advanced.  And yet they reduced themselves to the worst barbarism in human history, a barbarism armed with modern technology and intellectual sophistication.

I would argue that the leftist doesn’t really have ANY intellectual or moral tradition to draw from.  What is their “Bible”?  From which specific source do they draw upon for their worldview?  Based on what do that say, “This thing is right, and that thing wrong?”

To illustrate, let me quote Gleason Archer, from page 55-56 of his Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties:

But it should be pointed out that consistent atheism, which represents itself to be the most rational and logical of all approaches to reality, is in actuality completely self defeating and incapable of logical defense. That is to say, if indeed all matter has combined by mere chance, unguided by any Higher Power of Transcendental Intelligence, then it necessarily follows that the molecules of the human brain are also the product of mere chance. In other words, we think the way we do simply because the atoms and molecules of our brain tissue happen to have combined in the way they have, totally without transcendental guidance or control. So then even the philosophies of men, their system of logic and all their approaches to reality are the result of mere fortuity. There is no absolute validity to any argument advanced by the atheist against the position of theism.

On the basis of his won presuppositions, the atheist completely cancels himself out, for on his own premises his arguments are without any absolute validity. By his own confession he thinks the way he does simply because the atoms in his brain happen to combine the way they do. If this is so, he cannot honestly say that his view is any more valid than the contrary view of his opponent. His basic postulates are self contradictory and self defeating; for when he asserts that there are no absolutes, he thereby is asserting a very dogmatic absolute. Nor can he logically disprove the existence of God without resorting to a logic that depends on the existence of God for its validity. Apart from such a transcendent guarantor of the validity of logic, any attempts at logic or argumentation are simply manifestations of the behavior of the collocation of molecules that make up the thinker’s brain.

The point is that leftists – having no profound tradition to draw upon – are left to judge those with whom they disagree based far more on emotion than upon some foundation.  Evolution certainly doesn’t provide them with any legitimate foundation, for it disqualifies itself; our minds are just collections of random molecular interaction, and we think however we do purely because our brains happen to evolve as they have.  Therefore, my “Bible-based morality” is no less “valid” than theirs, based on their own view.  And they hate me only because they don’t happen to like what I say.

Let me say more about what I mean by arguing that leftists are “left to judge those with whom they disagree based far more on emotion than upon some foundation.”  The result is the tendency to think as follows:

“I am a good person.  Ergo sum what I think about moral and political issues is good.”

It’s not based on adhering to any moral foundation, but rather in adhering to their own notion of personal “goodness.”  I can’t be wrong about my moral intuition because I’m “good.”  Do you see what I mean?

Of course, on the Christian view, wrong and wrong again. First of all, they AREN’T “good.” Only God is truly good.  And only our Creator alone can ultimately understand what is good and what is evil.  We are all of us sinners with perverted wills and our moral intuitions are therefore fallible.  And second, GOD alone as revealed in His Scriptures is the source of legitimate moral foundations.  So it’s not about how “good” I am, but rather about how good GOD is.  Our moral foundation is therefore not based in our subjective preferences and desires, but rather on the objective goodness of our Creator God.

Since I recognize that God is the source of moral foundations, I don’t take it so “personally” to have those foundations questioned.  But for the liberal, it is ALL ABOUT their own “goodness” and “morality” when their moral or political views are being questioned.  Given that you as a liberal believe that gay marriage is “good” based on YOUR personal subjective intuitions, for example, for me to say that gay marriage is evil amounts to my saying that YOU are evil.  So you get angry and defensive and nasty.  Whereas for me, it comes down to my believing that God created the universe this way.  It’s not about “me” or “my goodness.”  So I DON’T get as angry.  I can remain more objective.

Having said that, there are most certainly Republicans, conservatives, and even Christians who either don’t rely on the Bible as their moral foundation (because either they reject the Bible or never get around to reading and understanding it).  So their moral views are ALSO the result of how they “feel” versus a legitimate foundation.  And thus there ARE people on “the right” who fall prey to the same anger I’m describing.  But, since conservatives are significantly more religious than liberals, it is far more a tendency of the left.

Leftists characterize evangelical Christians and conservatives as “intolerant” because we disagree with other points-of-view.  But they immediately invalidate their own position by being intolerant of the evangelical Christian/conservative point-of-view.  I remember having a discussion with a liberal who had said I was intolerant.  I asked, “Why do you say I’m intolerant?”  And he replied, “Because you think I’m wrong.”  When I responded, “But don’t you think I’m wrong, too?”  I could literally see the gears in his head working to continue to rationalize his view.

Anyway, the next time someone from the left astonishes you with a sheer, visceral hostility that you can’t even begin to understand, recognize that it is literally all they have.  And try to show pity on them.

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19 Responses to “On The Hatred Of The Left”

  1. taffy Says:

    I think your observations are accurate about secular liberals. I do happen to know some liberals who have spiritual/religious beliefs. Unfortunately, I also know them to be just as intolerant and visceral as secular liberals about things they don’t like or don’t agree with. In that light, I return to my “house of cards” theory. I believe that the intolerant and visceral behavior is fear-based. You can hear the anxiety/fear in their comments, which is why their comments can become visceral, whether spoken or written. They fear ANY idea or belief that does not fit their construct because if they were to look at that idea or belief objectively, then one piece of their construct is insupportable, and crashing down comes their house of cards. Their house of cards is so unstable that it only takes ONE piece/card that does not fit for the whole structure to collapse. So, they must preserve each and every one of their beliefs, no matter how flawed, because if they acknowledge one card is flawed, what does that say about all of their other cards? What if all their cards are flawed? What does that say about them and the kind of person they are? How could they be a good person and still admit that any piece is flawed? How can they ever admit that they were WRONG? What is one to do when one’s entire belief system crashes? Do you hear the fear/anxiety level rising here, Michael? Sound familiar?

    I agree with you that having a good spiritual/religous support system and a strong foundation of traditional beliefs about work ethic, treating others with respect no matter what and even in light of disagreements, and having genuine compassion for other beings will help one to behave from a place of enlightenment. But, unfortunately, it has been my experience that a person can have the ability to live these ways under certain conditions AND still have a personal belief system that is a house of cards, AND feel fear when their house of cards is threatened; and when they feel their house of cards is threatened, they will react from a position of fear every time.

    I believe you are observing the human condition in operation. I also believe the liberal belief system is more conducive to being a “house of cards” structure and/or the liberal belief system is generally preferred by people whose basic structure is a “house of cards” to begin with. Either way would explain why liberals are intolerant and become vicious more often than people with more conservative, traditional belief structures.

  2. 23five23 Says:

    Here’s where your entire reasoning falls apart.

    Atheists don’t believe in “Good” and “Evil” generally.

    I don’t think you’re evil. I just think you ideology is stupid and harmful to you, your children, and the world around you. I think your crazy, primitive belief in a “god” has kept the world in complete chaos since man stepped out of the cave, over 50,000 years ago.

    But you’re not evil. Just foolish.

  3. Michael Eden Says:

    You are right in that many atheists don’t believe in “good” or “evil.” But that alone makes the rest of your stuff kind of fall apart. What’s the difference in being “stupid or harmful to you, your children, and the world around you”? Doesn’t it amount to a moral difference between being harmful or not being harmful?

    As an atheist, explain to me how Joseph Stalin – who murdered over 50 million people to preserve his power in purges under a system of official atheism – was a “bad” atheist. If you offer me something like the Inquisition (which was nowhere near as murderous as atheism has been, btw), I can easily show you how they were “bad Christians” by turning to my Bible and in particular the teachings of Jesus who is the paradigmatic figure of Christianity.

    I can potentially be “good” as an atheist – although there is no reason whatsoever that I would prefer “good” over “evil” beyond purely subjective preference. But I can also be as evil and hateful and murderous as hell itself. How is “love” a more “evolved” emotion than “hate”? Aren’t BOTH equally part of “evolution”? Who are you to say that one is “better” than the other? How do you explain to me that evolution is prescriptive, and tells me how I OUGHT to behave?

    I would further submit that you re-read the quote from Gleason Archer and explain how – given that both your brain and mine “randomly evolved” on your own thinking – your idea of calling my thinking (which is merely just the fortuitous result of the atoms in my brain evolving as they did) is somehow less valid than your thinking which comes from the SAME PROCESS?

    This has always been interesting to me: why have humans always believed in God or the gods? I’M not the “freak”; YOU are. No civilization has EVER been based on atheism until the 20th century (and those regimes have been the most murderous and oppressive in human history, btw, with well over 100 million murders IN PEACETIME just due to ideological purges). Since early humans up until now have always been religious, doesn’t it follow that religion itself is “blessed” by evolution? And yet here you are, condemning evolution and telling me that evolution is “wrong.” The overwhelming majority of the world is religious, and studies show that the world population is becoming MORE religious. Evolution selected US RELIGIOUS PEOPLE, my friend. YOU’RE relegated to the “junk gene” category. And the fact of the matter is that evolution has ALWAYS selected atheism as the unfit gene. And all this is based on your own thinking. By condemning religion, you actually condemn the very evolution which is the basis of your whole thinking to begin with!!!

    I don’t know. It sure doesn’t seem to me that I’m the one who is “foolish.” If I had a nickel for every critical flaw with atheism, I would be a very rich man indeed.

    I would lastly submit that it’s not whether you believe evil is an objective category, but how you treat those who think like I do, that would put you in the “thinking I’m evil” category. If you become incredibly angry and try to repress me in my right to speak out, then you’re one of the people I’m talking about.

  4. Michael Eden Says:

    Taffy,
    I found your “house of cards” analogy insightful enough that I quoted you in an article I’ll probably publish tomorrow. I hope you approved of the context in which I placed your thoughts.

    I would add a little depth to the “house of cards” analogy by way of example. I have a sister in law – who is starting to “get” it, thank God – but who still deals with a tendency to think as follows:
    “I am a good person. Ergo sum what I think about moral/political issues is good.”
    It’s not based on adhering to a moral foundation, but rather in her own “goodness.” I can’t be wrong about my moral intuition because I’m “good.” Get it?

    Of course, on the Christian view, wrong and wrong again. First of all, you AREN’T “good.” Only God is. You are a sinner with a perverted will and you’re moral intuitions are as warped as every other fallen human soul. And second, GOD alone is the source of legitimate moral foundations.

    I might add that recognition to the article: as a Christian, since I recognize that God is the source of moral foundations, I don’t take it so “personally” to have those foundations questioned. But for the liberal, it is their OWN “goodness” and “morality” that is being questioned. Given that you as a liberal believe that gay marriage is “good” based on YOUR personal intuitions, for me to say that gay marriage is evil amounts to my saying that YOU are evil. So you get angry and nasty. Whereas for me, it comes down to my believing that God created the universe this way. It’s not about “me” or “my goodness.” So I DON’T get as angry.

    Having said that, there are most certainly Republicans, conservatives, and even Christians who either don’t rely on the Bible as their moral foundation (because either they reject the Bible or never get around to reading and understanding it). So their moral views are ALSO the result of how they “feel” versus a legitimate foundation. And thus there ARE people on “the right” who fall prey to the same anger I’m describing.

  5. 23five23 Says:

    Atheism has been responsible for more deaths than Christianity? What? You’ve got to be kidding.

    The difference between not believing in good or evil, is that I think people can change. I think good is subjective, as is bad. What’s good for you is obviously, not always good for me.

    Your basis for believing in God, that everyone has through man’s history, is somewhat incorrect but misguided more so. It was only in the last few decades that women were ever given equal rights to men. Your argument could be used against equality, too.

    As for your brain, well you choose to not think about what you read but feel it instead. Tell me, how many people have you stoned recently? The problem with Christianity and other religions is that they are based on some form of book which is supposedly written by god, through another person or angelic source. They are supposed to be completely infallible texts. Do you agree with everything your bible tells you? If not, how do you not question the rest. Best not think on that too much, which I’m sure you won’t because you’ve already closed those neural synapses and won’t allow yourself to think that THERE IS NO GOD. You’re on your own, and maybe that’s frightening for you. It’s not to me.

    I don’t hate you. I don’t even know you. But, I’m guessing that I would hate some of the things you’ve done. If you’ve voted against gay rights, women’s choice, civil rights, or any variety of the sort that most Christians fight vehemently against then I would hate your decision and your actions. But, I’d have to get to know you to really hate you. Or love you.

    I don’t think you’re evil though, because that would mean that you were doing those things solely to be cruel. I don’t think you make any of your decisions with that in mind. You’re probably a very caring, compassionate person, however misguided. You do bad things, some that no one will ever know about. But you also do good things.

  6. Michael Eden Says:

    Do you seriously not know that Stalin murdered 50 million Russians – under official atheist communism – after WWII? Do you seriously not know that Chairman Mao’s official atheist regime resulted in the murder of 60 million more? The several millions dead in North Korea? Pol Pot and Cambodia? Nazism – which murdered millions due to their Darwinist-based “fittest races” and “the fittest will survive”? Hello?

    Tell you what. Loan me a hundred thousand dollars so I can decide “honesty” is subjective and not pay you back. That would be very good for me, I suppose. And that’s why I wouldn’t trust an atheist to watch my dog for me.

    You are wrong again about women. Jesus gave women more rights and freedoms than had EVER been given. Get a Greek Bible and you’ll see that he uses the feminine form of “disciple” (mathetes). NO ONE had done that. And since no atheist civilization ever existed to GIVE women any rights, I don’t see why on earth you think you have any right to talk smack about it.

    You are being determined not to understand. If evolution is true, then our brains and our thinking and the content of what we think also evolved. And evolution selected religion, NOT atheism. You are literally a lousy atheist for rejecting the result of natural selection. You are the human equivalent of the dodo bird.

    “How many people have you stoned recently?” Are you writing from some kind of institution? And again, let me offer MY paradigm, who said, “Let the one among you who has never sinned cast the first stone” – with YOUR paradigm Stalin who MURDERED 50 MILLION PEOPLE AND PUT THEM IN GULAGS AND CRUSHED HUMAN DIGNITY.

    And now you’re talking about gay rights. What a lousy evolutionist you are! Do you seriously think natural selection is working to select our extinction as a species?

    I imagine you think I’m arrogant. But my morality doesn’t come from my own view of my own wonderful wonderfulness. It comes from the objective content of the Bible which became the force that changed Western Civilization and gave you all the rights and freedoms you like so much. It is YOU who are arrogant, because you reject objective morality and think I should believe just like you. Who died and made you God? I would challenge you to take your next vacation in North Korea and see how atheism violates and crushes everything that Christendom made possible for you.

    I notice that you didn’t explain how Stalin was a “bad atheist.” I’m still waiting.

  7. taffy Says:

    I will look forward to reading your application/take on my “house of cards” theory.

  8. 23five23 Says:

    your numbers are fantasy. stalin and mao are communists and dictators. there is no atheist dogma that controlled their actions nor any book that told them what to do.

    none of your reasoning even connects to reality. You know nothing about evolution, science, or reality. Stick to your little book, and your little mind.

  9. Michael Eden Says:

    Well, I’m through with you.

    The U.S.S.R., the People’s Republic of China, and the communist regimes of North Korea and Cambodia were/are officially atheist.

    “State atheism is the official promotion of atheism by a government, typically by active suppression of religious freedom and practice.[1] State atheism has been mostly implemented in communist countries, such as the former Soviet Union,[1] China, Communist Albania, Communist Afghanistan, North Korea, Communist Mongolia and Poland under communist rule also promoted state atheism and suppressed religion.2] In these nations, the governments viewed atheism as an intrinsic part of communist ideology.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_atheism

    And the numbers are certainly not fantasy. They are recorded facts of history:

    Communism has been the greatest social engineering experiment we have ever seen. It failed utterly and in doing so it killed over 100,000,000 men, women, and children, not to mention the near 30,000,000 of its subjects that died in its often aggressive wars and the rebellions it provoked. But there is a larger lesson to be learned from this horrendous sacrifice to one ideology. That is that no one can be trusted with power. The more power the center has to impose the beliefs of an ideological or religious elite or impose the whims of a dictator, the more likely human lives are to be sacrificed. This is but one reason, but perhaps the most important one, for fostering liberal democracy.”
    http://www.hawaii.edu/powerkills/COM.ART.HTM

    I wrote this in my Moyers piece:
    “Nazism, World War II, and the Holocaust did not begin in the mind of Adolf Hitler. Rather, it was the fruition of decades of intellectuals advancing their ideas. Profoundly anti-Semitic theological liberals undermined the validity of the Old Testament in order to depict Jews as frauds and purge “Jewishness” from Aryan Christianity. Doctors began presenting their views – based on Darwinism and the best “science” – of the superiority of the Aryan race and the corresponding need – in the name of Darwinian “survival of the fittest” – to eliminate inferior people in order to forge the master race. Other doctors – affirming the aforementioned theories – delved into eugenics and other measures to create and shape that master race. And all the while philosophers and other German intellectuals were developing the concept of Lebensunwertes Leben (”life unworthy to be lived”).

    Adolf Hitler – who was shaped and influenced by these intellectuals’ ideas – was merely one of the architects who put them all together. The view that the Jews were a subhuman race whose very existence posed a threat to the German people, and to the German Weltanschauung (for a more in depth understanding, click here).

    I here are the supporting links to back up what I said:
    http://www.csustan.edu/history/faculty/weikart/fromdarwintohitler.htm

    http://www.straight-talk.net/evolution/hit.htm

    http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=26092

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_unworthy_of_life

    You go ahead and think whatever you want. You go ahead and call me whatever you like. The The Bible, the history of Western Civilization, and even the obvious implications of evolutionary theory itself all call you a fool. I’ll go by that.

    Now please go away and bother someone else.

  10. Michael Eden Says:

    Taffy,
    I would have probably put it out today, but my niece needed my help and so I gave my free hours to her.

    But I DO have the American Sentinel link that you asked about:
    http://americansentinel.squarespace.com/

    I use it in a piece directed at the activist media, and its liberal worldview.

  11. Robert Says:

    Michael Eden,

    Unfortunately, you repeat many of the same falsehoods about atheism that no scholar of the communist experience I’m aware of supports. I deal with the question extensively in an article I wrote not long ago. Even Dinesh D’Souza could not adequately deal with it. You may rant all you wish, but unless you can provide some actual evidence for your claims, then you’re merely spouting hot air.

  12. Michael Eden Says:

    Oh, my God. You’re right. The USSR, the PRC, North Korea, Cambodia, et al were actually founded by evangelical Christians, and the whole Marx “religion is an opiate of the masses” is just a conspiracy fabricated by the right wing attack machine. And of course it was West Germany that built that Berlin wall to keep it’s citizens from escaping to the Soviet Union.

    I tell you what: I’ll take the testimony of Alexander Solzhenitsyn and the many other great Soviet Dissidents (Andrei Sakharov, Elena Bonner, Vladimir Bukovsky, Joseph Begum who survived the gulags and watched the massive atheist brutality with their own eyes over yours. Such men have more knowledge of communist atrocity in their pinky toe clippings that you will ever amass in your entire life. Solzhenitsyn said 40 million were killed in the purges, and 60 million were imprisoned in the gulags for their political ideals.

    I’ll take the word of Richard Wombrandt, who was tortured for his faith in a gulag. He wrote, “The cruelty of atheism is hard to believe when man has no faith in the reward of faith in the reward of good or the punishment of evil. There is no reason to be human. There is no restraint from the depths of evil which is in man. The communist torturers often said, ‘There is no God. There is no hereafter. No punishment for evil. We can do what we wish!’ I have even heard one torturer say, ‘I thank God in whom I don’t believe that I have lived to this hour when I can express all of the evil in my heart.’ He expressed it in unbelievable brutality and torture inflicted on prisoners.”

    “No scholar of the communist experience” my rear end. You know, Joseph Goebbels never had an unkind thing to say about Nazism either. I guess I should start denying the damn Holocaust.

    You are no different than the historical revisionists who try to argue that Abraham Lincoln never put “that this nation, under God” in his Gettysburg Address simply because their ideology doesn’t permit him having said it in spite of the fact that several journalists wired the words to their papers right after the speech and the few manuscripts themselves had the phrase. They don’t like those facts, so they invent their own.

    Read Rudolph Rummel’s Death By Government so you can add it to your claim that I have no evidence for my claims.

    Also read (more of my “non-evidence”):
    The Black Book of Communism Crimes, Terror, Repression by Stéphane Courtois et al (and see his article “The Crimes of Communism“)

    Refer to sites such as Digital Survivors with its “Communist Body Count

    Victims of Communism

    The Museum of Communism

  13. Robert Says:

    Michael Eden, you wrote,

    Oh, my God. You’re right. The USSR, the PRC, North Korea, Cambodia, et al were actually founded by evangelical Christians, and the whole Marx “religion is an opiate of the masses” is just a conspiracy fabricated by the right wing attack machine.

    You’re only proving my point, Michael. Trotting out that quote from Marx, which I’ve explained twice in the posts I linked is not what you, D’Souza or other Christian apologists make it out to be, demonstrates your ignorance of the subject.

    I tell you what: I’ll take the testimony of Alexander Solzhenitsyn and the many other great Soviet Dissidents…

    I would suggest reading your sources better. Solzhenitsyn’s famous anti-western and freedom-hating screed you cite mentions atheism exactly never. Did you mean to agree with him? As for the other dissidents, where do they support your claim?

    I’ll take the word of Richard Wombrandt…

    Who is “Richard Wombrandt”? Do you mean Richard Wurmbrand, the Romanian evangelical Christian minister? Yes, his views on the subject are completely objective.

    “No scholar of the communist experience” my rear end.

    Still waiting for you to cite one. You’re as likely to find one on your rear end as anywhere else I suppose. In the meantime, feel free to explain why scholars such as Hannah Arendt–you know, people who spent decades studying communism and nazism, and whose works are internationally recognized as classics on the subject–never once reduces those ideologies to atheism. You’ll search in vain for even an appearance of the word in her work The Origins of Totalitarianism.

    Who’s the revisionist?

    Read Rudolph Rummel’s Death By Government so you can add it to your claim that I have no evidence for my claims.

    Finally, a scholar! But what was I just saying about reading your sources? I’ve read Rummel’s work. His site was pointed out to me after I wrote my article. Here is what he has to say specifically on the subject:

    Q: Is atheism the principal factor in democide, such as that committed by the “Big Three,” Stalin, Mao, and Hitler?

    A: No. I find that religion or its lack — atheism — have hardly anything to do in general with wide-scale democide. The most important factor is totalitarian power. Whether a church, atheists, or agnostics have that power is incidental — it is having the power that is a condition of democide. Incidentally, some ideologies, such as communism, function psychologically and sociologically as though a religion. The only distinction is whether the subject is a god or a man, such as Marx, Lenin, Hirohito, Hitler, Mohammed, Kim Ill sung, Mao, etc.

    Refuted by your own cited expert, the proper thing for you to do now is to admit your error and revise your thinking. Unfortunately, changing one’s mind has proven exceedingly difficult for believers, so I expect you to continue in your canards.

    Also read (more of my “non-evidence”):

    I agree. Communism was the problem. As an ideology, it completely destroys institutions, like private property, that prevent bloodthirsty tyrants from running roughshod over their societies. It’s no coincidence that tyranny always accompanies nationalization. Where did the Marxists get their hatred of private property? From a 19th-century philosopher named Joseph Proudhon. And what was the key influence on his thinking?

    The Bible.

  14. Michael Eden Says:

    Don’t have time with many comments and an article to write at the length I would like.

    We have two competing ideologies. Christendom, represented by Western Civilization. And atheism, represented by the Communist/Marxist system. One established freedom and dignity; the other immediately degenerate into the most massive butchery and crushing of the human spirit of ANY system in human history.

    I cited Rummel’s Death By Government to refute your charge that Communism was not responsible for deaths on a scale never before seen in human history. I proved a fact of history, which you had denied. You are now using him for a different purpose, to show that the atheism – “an intrinsic part of communist ideology” – or that Marx’s religion as opiate of the masses and his goal of an atheistic society – have NOTHING WHATEVER TO DO WITH communism. I will simply point out the blatantly obvious fact that the civilization that was inextricably interwoven with Christianity is the freest in the history of the world, and the society that is based on official state atheism is the most brutal in the history of the world.

    Please, though. Go to North Korea and live it up.

    If you are ignorant enough of the Bible to believe that it justifies the communism of Karl Marx, what can I even say? To the extent that communism is a depraved heresy of the Bible doesn’t mean that the Bible is in any way responsible for it. Heretics are enemies of the doctrines they pervert, not friends.

    You still haven’t explained to me how Joseph Stalin was a bad atheist. And if you can’t demonstrate that he was a bad atheist, you most certainly can’t tell me that atheism has nothing to do with his loathsome murder of millions. I, on the other hand, can easily show you that he was a terrible and evil man by the standards of Jesus Christ and the apostles.

    Btw, you’re wrong about Solzhenitsyn.

    In his “A World Split Apart,” (link is in my comment above) his thesis is that only religious (Christian) values provide a framework for rights or freedoms.

    He says,
    “However, in early democracies, as in American democracy at the time of its birth, all individual human rights were granted because man is God’s creature. That is, freedom was given to the individual conditionally, in the assumption of his constant religious responsibility. Such was the heritage of the preceding thousand years.”

    The present peril of the West, its weakness and uncertainty, may therefore be traced to “the very basis of human thinking in the past centuries,” what Solzhenitsyn calls “rationalistic humanism or humanistic autonomy: the proclaimed and enforced autonomy of man from any higher force above him.” Modernity, to put it simply, has been a mistake, a grave intellectual error. “We are now experiencing the consequences of mistakes which had not been noticed at the beginning of the journey,” he observes. “On the way from the Renaissance to our days we have enriched our experience, but he have lost the concept of a Supreme Complete Entity which used to restrain our passions and our irresponsibility.” This loss — of the idea of God, or of nature, in the classical understanding — is the “real crisis” of our time, for “the split in the world is less terrible than the fact that the same disease plagues its two main sections.”

    Your argument is that Solzhenitsyn doesn’t attribute atheism to the terrors that overcame his Russia. But he clearly does. God is the only legitimate source of our human rights and freedoms, and the removal of God will ultimately remove the rights and freedoms, resulting in the Gulags. And he warns that the same crisis of godlessness that destroyed the USSR is overtaking the West as well.

    Would also argue that Solzhenitsyn’s “Gulag Archipelago” is a testimony to the result of atheism.
    One writer says,
    He speaks of Gulag not merely as the prison system of one modern country, but as the logical end of the whole of modern history once God has been removed from men’s lives. This is not merely a “Russian” experiment—it is the end of all peoples who remove God from the center of life. And Gulag is an essential part of atheist society—if you remove it, the Soviet system itself will crumble. Atheism is based on the evil in man’s nature, and Gulag is only the natural expression of this. Russia’s experience with Gulag is for the whole of humanity, and no one should presume to comment on the nature and meaning of modern history until he has read this book.

    Btw, a scholarly article by John Conway O’Brien entitled, “Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn and the Evils of Soviet Communism” is another excellent source.
    Here is an abstract:
    Solzhenitsyn, former Zek and Nobel Laureate, found the causes of the cruelty of which the Communists were capable to lie in the Marxist-Leninist ideology. The atheistic Communists had substituted their ideology for the values of Christianity which had stood the Russians in good stead and had perdured the test of time. The Communists were bent on stamping out religion. They arrested priests, nuns and those who practised their beliefs. Solzhenitsyn sees in religion the anodyne to Russiaprimes ills.

    The fact that someone like Robert is able to find atheists and communists (or post-Marxist, or whatever these fools are calling themselves these days) – whether “scholars” or not – to say that atheism and communism are actually good things not responsible for anything awful really amounts to a gigantic mountain of crap.

    If you were around Spain during and shortly after the worst of the Inquisition, you would find “Christian” scholars exactly like Robert, who profoundly lacked the intellectual or moral credibility to acknowledge something that was blatantly obvious. They justified THEIR evil, just like Rob is doing with his officially atheist communism. He’s no different than they. In fact, the only difference is that atheist communism murdered and crushed and imprisoned FAR more people than the Inquisitors ever even dreamed.

    And btw, I can show that the Inquisitors violated the teachings of Jesus and Christianity in a way that you cannot show that Joseph Stalin violated the teachings of atheism (whatever the hell – and I do mean ‘hell’ – they even are).

  15. Robert Says:

    Michael, unfortunately you offer nothing more than Christian propaganda, and in fact are simply ranting at this point. Refuted in your accusations by the evidence and actual scholars, you now resort – bizarrely – to claiming they are atheists themselves! The only people who agree with you are fundamentalist anti-atheist Christians, who hate any idea or thought contrary to their version of Christian theology.

    The entire basis of your case is summed up in your statement:

    God is the only legitimate source of our human rights and freedoms, and the removal of God will ultimately remove the rights and freedoms, resulting in the Gulags.

    One can only laugh at the ignorance. How many gulags are in countries like Japan, where 84-96% of the population does not believe in God?

    Frankly, your views are frightening. Taken to its logical conclusion, it would justify the forced conversion of non-believers to Christianity, or rule by Christian theocracy, at the least. It’s the same sort of thinking that justified the extermination of millions of so-called heretics and non-Christians during the Middle Ages.

  16. Michael Eden Says:

    Geez, Robert, you have already undermined and discredited yourself. Let me post what you said in an earlier comment:

    January 27
    “Unfortunately, you repeat many of the same falsehoods about atheism that no scholar of the communist experience I’m aware of supports. I deal with the question extensively in an article I wrote not long ago. Even Dinesh D’Souza could not adequately deal with it. You may rant all you wish, but unless you can provide some actual evidence for your claims, then you’re merely spouting hot air.”

    Now, you pass yourself off as some sort of “expert.” But you are either ignorant, or a liar, or an ignorant liar. You aren’t “aware” of anything that doesn’t agree with your pro-communist and pro-atheist agenda. And you tell me I’M doing propaganda.

    I found the following scholarly support of the mass executions under communism that you previously denied:
    – Chistyakovoy, V. (Neva, no.10): 20 million killed during the 1930s.-
    – Dyadkin, I.G. (Demograficheskaya statistika neyestestvennoy smertnosti v SSSR 1918-1956 ): 56 to 62 million “unnatural deaths” for the USSR overall, with 34 to 49 million under Stalin.
    – Gold, John.: 50-60 million
    – Davies, Norman (Europe A History, 1998): c. 50 million killed 1924-53, excluding WW2 war losses. This would divide (more or less) into 33M pre-war and 17M after 1939.
    – Rummel, 1990: 61,911,000 democides in the USSR 1917-87, of which 51,755,000 occurred during the Stalin years. This divides up into:
    + 1923-29: 2,200,000 (plus 1M non-democidal famine deaths)
    + 1929-39: 15,785,000 (plus 2M non-democidal famine)
    + 1939-45: 18,157,000
    + 1946-54: 15,613,000 (plus 333,000 non-democidal famine)
    + TOTAL: 51,755,000 democides and 3,333,000 non-demo (e.g. famine).
    – William Cockerham, Health and Social Change in Russia and Eastern Europe: 50 million +
    – Medvedev, Roy (Let History Judge): 40 million.
    – Solzhenitsyn, Aleksandr: 60 million.

    That’s a lot of scholars saying a whopping load of people died under Soviet Communism. Which (did I mention?) is officially atheist. And I note for at least the 3rd time that you STILL haven’t told me why Joseph Stalin – murderer of so many millions of people – was a “bad atheist” for his acts.

    You make a truly stupid point when you say, “The entire basis of your case is summed up in your statement.” I was in point of fact summing up Aleksander Solzhenitsyn’s argument. And I offered a couple of quotes – which are sourced – to show that in fact the statement you find so disturbing DOES accurately represent his view. And if I wanted to, I could have given FAR MORE from his “Gulag Archipelago,” in which he REALLY slams communist atheist atrocity. And again, Solzhenitsyn is a greater scholar than you and all the moral idiots you cite as “experts” times 1000. And he PERSONALLY suffered and PERSONALLY observed the hate and viciousness of communist atheism firsthand. Unlike you, he actually knew what he was talking about.

    Atheism has a 100% track record. In every single society in which a government was officially atheist – EVERY SINGLE ONE – unimaginable atrocity, totalitarian nightmare, and the crushing of human dignity followed. Russia. China. Cambodia. North Korea. Every single time. It is a simple statement of fact that EVERY single officially atheist regime has descended into total vicious inhuman depravity, wherever it has been tried. There is a one-to-one correlation. It didn’t occasionally happen; it HAS ALWAYS happened. And you, you fool, want to claim that atheism had NOTHING TO DO WITH IT.

    As to your irrelevant mention of Japan, do I actually need to remind you of the massive war crimes committed by Japan? Of the Rape of Nanking? The Bataan Death March? The Slavery for prostitution of tens of thousands of women for the sexual gratification of the troops? Of the Japanese Unit 731, which put Dr. Mengele to shame? The vivisections without anesthesia on screaming human beings didn’t bother you, did it? Are you so morally depraved that you actually hold up Japan as having been a moral society?

    Since you apparently too foolish and ignorant to understand history, let me briefly explain something. We defeated a genuinely evil Japanese society. And as a result of our victory, we IMPOSED our Judeo-Christian value system upon them. Many of the people may be atheist, but their system of government is not. Their society is a reflection of our superior moral values, in the same way that India’s democracy was the result of values imposed on them by the British. It was British Christian values that ended the practice of sati (wives having to throw themselves alive onto their husband’s blazing funeral pyres).

    And for someone who has repeatedly accused me of ranting, your last paragraph is nothing if not an unhinged rant from an ideological leftist loon.

    I’m through with you. I gave you more than enough room on my blog to be fair. And far more than you deserved. And I’ve wasted more than enough time dealing with your pseudo-intellectualized idiocy. Go deny reality on someone else’s site.

  17. Nicole Says:

    Dear Michael Eden,
    I am Christian. I was born in Africa and I live in Belgium. I also lived and worked in the U.S. between 1994 and 2000.
    I would like to thank you for your blog and all your well-informed and documented insights. Your English is also a delight. Unfortunately mine is not as good (although I teach basic English to French speakers).
    I also believe that without God there is no way out. I have read many things, met many people and studied quite a bit, but I have never read something as smart and as superior as the New Testament.

    Forget communism however, because its collapse is just too obvious; communism used atheism but atheism doesn’t necessarily result in communism. It relies more and more on Darwinism, which is the real threat today, especially in Europe and in Belgium where the Nazis have left many kids behind. As to Japan, it is just a big modern Gulag.

    I look forward to reading more from you, but don’t get so passionate about defeating atheists: they have to learn to trust the New testament, not us. Sometimes I think the old testament should not be recommanded to people whose faith is not mature enough. But God is in control, so there is nothing to fear from the fools as long as we keep loving them in Jesus.

    I have one question: the apostle Paul did not authorize women to teach biblical truths; how do evangelical christians live that advice today?
    Kind regards,
    Nicole

  18. Michael Eden Says:

    Nicole, a genuine delight to hear from you.

    Let me take your last point – your question – first. Let me start with Jesus and His disciples. Being a woman (and I have always loved the name ‘Nicole,’ by the way), I think you would be delighted to realize just how profoundly “counter-cultural” Jesus was regarding women. Do you know that Dorcas is specifically called a “disciple” (mathetria) in Acts 9:36? And Jesus treated women as disciples; He taught women, when the Jews of His day would have been outraged (Disciple means “learner,” and Jesus’ teaching women implies such status). And some speculate that the fact that Dorcas was specifically called a “disciple” implies that she was one of the 72 witnesses sent out by Jesus in Luke 10:1.

    Christianity has always been FAR ahead of other religions in giving women status. Contrast to Islam, and the practice of satee (the practice of wives throwing themselves alive onto their husband’s burning funeral pyres, which was ended by Christian British) in Hinduism, for examples.

    Here’s a study of women in the New Testament. And again, when women in Islam are forced to walk around in giant garments that conceal all but their eyes (hijabs), and Islamic teachers are STILL upset because they should have only ONE eye exposed – well, you see the difference!!!

    Paul worked intimately with women. He refers to Priscilla and Aquinas, placing the wife first. This is likely a recognition that Priscilla was the greater spiritual worker, and she is honored accordingly.

    Paul provides teaching that women should not exercise spiritual headship over men. And he grounds it in the creation order (Eve was deceived, whereas Adam sinned after his wife did understanding what he was doing). First of all, this does NOT preclude women from serving in pastoral ministry – providing she is not the SENIOR pastor in a church with men. Second, I would argue that women have many gifts that men lack – including greater empathy and compassion. And it is that empathy and compassion (I believe) that Paul is saying can be turned against women and lead them into deception. And today, for example, women are FAR more likely to embrace liberalism than men. Deception is a very real thing – and spiritual deception is incredibly dangerous.

    So I would say that Paul DOES allow women to teach biblical truths; he merely provides one ultimate limit upon them. Some women are powerful ministers to audiences of women; many women serve as assistant or associate pastors under a senior pastor. And certain others essentially ARE senior pastors over congregations with men, but argue that they are ultimately “under” their husbands – and thus fall under Paul’s teaching.

    Tragically, Paul’s teaching re: women and leadership has been terribly corrupted throughout history. Women being “kept down” as second citizens, or denied from serving in ministry was most DEFINITELY not what Paul had in mind. And a reading of how Paul treated his female “co-laborers” ought to demonstrate that.

  19. Michael Eden Says:

    As to the rest of your note, I agree that atheism doesn’t necessarily lead to communism. But communism IS officially atheist, and the horrors that result from communism can therefore legitimately be laid on communism to counter the charge that “religion” is responsible for so much political death. Nazism can be directly linked to Darwinism and Darwinian premises.

    Ultimately, I would argue that any atheist government will ultimately become totalitarian, as it cannot possibly provide a meaningful doctrine of human rights, human freedom, and human dignity. Whether communist, fascist, or what, it will be totalitarian.

    Interestingly, while communism has failed everywhere it’s been tried (save China, which has so modified its “communism” that it is no longer really “communist”), it continues to dominate in academia – especially American academia. So it continues to remain a grave threat, as the academics, bureaucrats who come from academia, and intellectual elites continue to embrace thoroughly failed principles.

    I can’t argue with you that I have a passion for defeating atheists, and I DO constantly try to “reign myself in” as to arguments. But I think – at the same time – that it is important that we don’t allow atheists to simply get away with outright lies regarding Christianity and religion. We are in a battle, and we have to fight. If we withdraw from the field, they win by default. Failing to answer their accusations and objections creates a vacuum in which lies become “the truth.” We have to respond.

    As for the New vs. Old Testament, they are both the sacred Word of God. And both are crucial for believers. As Jesus said, He came to fulfill the Old Testament. And He did so, perfectly, as the “Lamb of God.” The Old Testament explains why Jesus had to come to bear the sins of the world. The Old Testament foreshadows and provides types for Christ. God’s revelation was progressive to people through the centuries, until finally (Gal 4:4-5), “But in the fullness of time God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that they might receive adoption as sons (and daughters).”

    I would agree that the New Testament is a far better place to start with a new believer, but the Old Testament – properly understood – shines so much light on the meaning of the New.

    Very much appreciate your note and your thoughts, Nicole.

    Michael

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