Thursday, October 29, 2009

From Rod Dreher
  • Афганистан: мы были там, сделили это. Afghanistan: been there, done that or 1986 all over again. In English.
  • Pro-market not pro-business? I see the appeal and am not necessarily agreeing with it, just bringing it out for discussion. Some on my side would say it’s romantic nonsense (with the criticism that Dreher’s crunchiness is socially conservative SWPLness, which he’s smart and honest enough to acknowledge); the most efficient business (at serving you and me) may be bigger.
  • Moralistic therapeutic deism again. Not exactly deism (a God who isn’t active in the world any more) but demoting God to a sort of kindly spirit that does your bidding; you call the shots. What in practice has become America’s religion. They believe in a benevolent God unattached to a particular tradition who is there mostly to help with personal problems.
  • How the left are oppressive to normal human desires and interaction. While working at ABC Television in NYC I see a co-worker, an attractive late-20s female, dressed to the nines. Turns out she was going to a black-tie affair immediately after work... My comment? “You look great. That’s a beautiful dress.” Monday morning I get called into my boss’s office, and a woman from HR is there, along with our Union Rep, because I’m being charged with sexual harrassment. Fortunately, I left the company 2 months later. The result of this experience has been to create a bias for me against hiring women. Unfair? Absolutely. Pragmatic, realistic and better for my fiscal health? Absolutely. Also, “diversity” tends to reduce social solidarity and social capital. Robert Putnam writes that those in more diverse communities tend to “distrust their neighbors, regardless of the color of their skin, to withdraw even from close friends... to huddle unhappily in front of the television. People living in ethnically diverse settings appear to ‘hunker down’ — that is, to pull in like a turtle.” The SWPL do it too — witness places like Portland, Oregon, where they congregate: next to no blacks — but don’t admit it.
  • A localist future.
  • Is Pope Benedict taking the Benedict Option, getting Christians ready for a long night? One correction: his recent offer is in theory to all Anglicans but in practice not to Protestant Anglicans, who of course aren’t interested, but to Anglo-Catholics and specifically their English version, the Anglo-Papalists.

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