Blog Philosophy: Truth, Virtue, and Creating Civil Discourse

In the philosophical distractions department, a good friend of the blog is reading A Manual for Creating Atheists by Portland State University professor Dr. Peter Boghossian. Creating atheists isn’t high on my secular humanist priority list, but my blog friend directs me toward Australian blogger Seb Pearce’s favorable review of/reaction to Boghossian’s book, where I find a couple of statements from which all blog readers, writers, and commenters can profit.

Peter Boghossian, Socrates, Marcus Aurelius
Peter Boghossian, Socrates, Marcus Aurelius

Pearce finds that Boghossian, far from a smug atheist interested in beating believers in debates, appears more interested in gently persuading others to ground their knowledge in critical thinking rather than faith. Pearce thus likens Boghossian’s effort to Socrates’s pursuit of truth and stoic philosopher-emperor Marcus Aurelius’s pursuit of virtue.

What does any of that high-falutin’ philosophizing have to do with blogging? First, apply some Socratic questioning:

A person who truly cares about truth doesn’t care if they win an argument. Their goal is to walk away from every discussion closer to the truth than they did when it began. This means that they begin by seeking to understand, not to explain. “If what you’re saying is true, then I sincerely want to know. Could you explain to me how you know that it’s true? If your method is reliable, I’ll get on board.” As Socrates is famous for, and as Anthony Magnabosco demonstrates through his application of Boghossian’s Street Epistemology techniques, an approach centred on seeking truth together often leads to the realisation that one doesn’t know as much as one thought, that one’s confidence was unwarranted [Seb Pearce, “Truth, Virtue, and Creating Atheists,” blog, 2015.12.06].

Add virtue:

A person who truly cares about virtue doesn’t care if they win an argument, either. Winning feels good, but it’s irrelevant to whether you are virtuous. Virtue involves treating your interlocutor with respect, goodwill and patience. There is no need for ad hominem attacks, questioning of motives, mockery, derision or blame. There is no need to take offence or indulge in righteous indignation, both of which are emotionally gratifying but useless in getting closer to virtue or truth. If your goal really is truth and not a desire to win, you must seriously consider the possibility that you’re wrong — and this openness entails a humility that can spread to your interlocutor [Pearce, 2015.12.06].

I sometimes give my teaching methods a philosophical gloss by saying I use Socratic questioning. I try to use questions in my classrooms whenever possible to lead students to build their own answers.

But I don’t always follow the Socratic ethos when I’m blogging and politicking. I like to engage you , dear readers, in conversations, and questions are the best way to open that door, but as you can see in almost every article I post, I forge ahead with faith in my conviction that certain things are right, certain things are wrong, and certain actions (votes, policies, etc.) are necessary to make South Dakota/America/the world better. I debate, I get righteously indignant, and I try to win.

Imagine if you and I followed the path of critical questioning Pearce describes. Imagine if we grounded our every word on this blog and in our other civic interactions in respect, goodwill, and patience (even when we’re talking about Mike Rounds and Kristi Noem?! Uff da—that’s asking a lot!).

Seek truth and virtue—what would that mean in the blog world?

288 Responses to Blog Philosophy: Truth, Virtue, and Creating Civil Discourse

  1. What a timely post. I wish that it would go viral, so
    I am putting it on Facebook.
    Much as I don’t cotton to stuff on my fridge.. that is a consideration!

    I am privileged to know this man as a neighbor. He expands the same concept into the corporate

  2. Daniel Buresh

    Interesting topic. While for some truly intellectual and open-minded people, this rings true. For a majority of bloggers and groups online, it is not. In fact, one could argue that the internet has actually made many people even more close minded. I try to avoid this by visiting up to 10 different blogs, many with varying opinions and what they hold as truths. When individuals can find small groups of people who align identically to what they believe, no matter how wrong it may be, they are only reinforcing their beliefs as being the “right” beliefs. This makes it so they never have to change or alter their ideology because they can just keep patting each other on the back because they all feel the same way, no matter how small their group may be. It actually removes civil discourse and creates the environment where they are always right and you are always wrong. I could name many people on this blog alone who perpetuate the condition. Just try pointing out something good a Republican has done and you will get the same 5 commenters telling you why they are the devil. Go to the other side of the spectrum and its the same thing. May not be relevant. May not even be pertinent, but the comment will be there.

  3. Porter Lansing

    Ad hominem attacks, questioning of motives, mockery, derision and blame can’t make you a winner or to even feel like a winner. However, they’re valid when extracting revenge.

  4. Nice. A philosophical discussion.
    I don’t claim to read 10 different blogs – who has the time? But I fully concur with the practice of broadening one’s horizons in the search for truth and virtue – it may even be virtuous.

  5. Porter, did you learn nothing from Return of the Jedi? Don’t give in to the Dark Side!

  6. mike from iowa

    Wasn’y yhe inyernet that closed my mind. It has been a steady decline in wingnut’s morals and family values ever since Nixon slimed his way into the White House. Those very same disgusting practices and such coalesce around every wingnut candidate for potus and in every state legislature run by wingnuts. Candidates practically beg for nut jobs to come out of the woodwork and cause fractious behaviors.

  7. Lauren, Curt, thanks! While even I don’t read ten blogs every day, I agree with Daniel’s sentiment that reading and interacting with multiple sources helps us better pursue truth. I don’t think there’s a magic number… could a responsible, curious citizen get by with two or three really thorough sources?

    Of course, we still have to work really hard to critically evaluate our sources. What if a person claims to get a balanced news diet by watching equal parts FOX and MSNBC? Is that an instructive mix of sources for informed discourse when 18% of FOX’s claims and 31% of MSNBC’s are honest? (Curious: would anyone care to guess my honesty rate?)

    One of the reasons Dakota War College frustrates me so is that it emphasizes war over college. It doesn’t really engage in issues except when they serve the party line, and it doesn’t invite open discussion in the comment section that would allow us to develop issues more fully.

    Multivocality makes the blogosphere tick. We need links to each other’s blogs. We need multiple voices all along the political spectrum communicating with each other, alternately rebutting and reinforcing each other. We need Republicans, Democrats, Independents, and other voices in this comment section so we don’t fall into the ideological echo chamber Daniel describes. Even when Daniel is completely full of crap (it happens), we must continue to make him welcome, because tomorrow he might be able to help us realize that we are full of crap (that happens, too!).

    If we all agree with each other, we don’t ask each other interesting questions, and we don’t really test each other’s virtue. We learn best amidst opposition.

  8. Porter Lansing

    Ha ha … revenge is a perfect tool for fighting bullies. And political blogs are like soil bank for harboring them. To win an argument with a conservative bully means only to even the score.

  9. Interesting dialogue that seems to entail these concepts going on at the Northern Valley Beacon between the Rev. Hickey and Dr. Newquist:

  10. Anne, thanks for directing our attention to that conversation. Donald Trump is the antithesis of the conscientious discussant we are looking for. Trump’s words suggest no curious quest for truth or virtue in civic conversation. Newquist’s comparison of Trump’s supporters and the Germans who elected Hitler also offers a scary study in the fear that Boghossian recognizes can supplant critical thinking and drive people to put their faith in false gods.

    The exchange between Hickey and Newquist so far is a fair example of vehement disagreement, with high stakes for truth, that does not resort to name calling (at least not yet!).

  11. Roger Elgersma

    I agree with what you say Cory. I suspect that one turns from philosophical thought to I want to win because politics is something that affects our lives soon and for sure and is there a God or not is not going to affect our life today. I also think that if there is a God it is more his job to prove that than it is mine. We all have our own experiences and that affects both our religion and our politics. The other side is not going to succumb easily so trying to win just builds walls and antagonism.
    I do like your blog because we not only get a variety of input but you do research to get a starting point based on facts that some of us would never find out any other way. On a subject that I know little of, I do not feel comfortable to start writing on but when you add some facts there is more to write on from an informed point of view. Thanks.

  12. Roger Cornelius

    In Trump’s daily grab for headlines, he has called for a complete ban of Jews, er Muslims, from entering the country.

    Hickey has been promoting this same dialogue on Facebook, he seems content to live in a fear of Hitler than to believe our country and our president can handle terrorism. Hickey has become one of those Germans that would rather believe lies that Trump promotes.
    Does anyone on this blog believe that there could be a Hitler that could take over this country without serious opposition? The closest thing we have to Hitler is Donald Trump.

  13. Mr. C is right. There would be some very serious opposition. That’s why we need to vote No on Trump.

  14. bearcreekbat

    Virtue does not fall anywhere within my understanding of either philosophy or faith. Rather virtue seems more a matter of how we interact with each other. “Political correctness” is a virtuous trait as it demonstrates respect for others. Those who denigrate “political correctness” are denigrating treating others with respect and advocate a more bully like persona.

    Truth is always the goal of philosophy. Philosophical analysis requires consideration of the implication of facts we know about ourselves and the world. Philosophy is closer to a scientific method that attempts to uncover the mysteries of the world and the nature of humanity by positing factual matters that can be tested through logic and reason.

    Faith, however, is just the opposite and seems better described through theology, as theology is premised on faith rather than fact. If one cannot objectively prove a posited fact, then one must either dismiss the matter as untrue, or rely on faith that the fact exists, even where this can not be tested.

    In looking at the dialogue between Dr. Newquist and Rev. Hickey, it seems pretty clear that Newquist is making a factual based comparison, while Hickey responds with an emotional reaction relying on someone as incredible as Howard Stern. But as Cory points out, their dialogue has remained virtuous so far.

  15. Lanny V Stricherz

    While I agree with much of what Daniel wrote, I must say that I dialogued with Governor Rounds early on regarding the Big Stone II coal burning power plant and did not have a disregard for him at that time. I also did not bear any animosity toward the then future Governor Daugaard. However after watching the shenanigans that both of them have pulled to further their own standing and to the detriment of others, such as teachers, farmers, small business people, the environment and particularly toward Native American children and because of underfunding education essentially all of our children, I have nothing but disrespect for both of them.

    I also don’t particularly care for any of the last 5 presidents, with the possible exception of GHW Bush. And with all due respect, Mike from Iowa, although I did not care for him when he was President, history has been much kinder to Richard Nixon, in my opinion than to any of the ones who succeeded him, because of his starting the EPA, opening the door to relations with China and although it took a long time, for ending the Viet Nam war. He also was in favor of National Health care:
    and a Department of Peace.

    When you consider that our health care consumes more than double in terms of GDP what it did when Nixon was president, one would have to think that, other than the constant wars that we seem to regale in, there has been no greater failure of those in our federal government than the fact that they were not able to come to terms with the fact that healthcare is a right not a privilege.

  16. Lanny he could have stopped the war a long time before his reelection.

  17. bearcreekbat

    Lanny, I too have to agree that Nixon did some positive things for the poor in our Nation. In particular, he was the President that signed into law the Legal Services Corporation Act, which provided legal help to the poor in civil matters. Reagan hated LSC because they challenged the inequitable and illegal treatment of immigrant workers in California. I loved LSC untilthe Clinton years because before Clinton, LSC could, and did successfully, challenge many governmental policies that hurt the poor. See e.g.,

    My one issue with Hillary, which I am not certain she could have done much to prevent, is the Republican castration of LSC during the Bill’s administration while Hillary was on the Board of LSC.

  18. Lanny V Stricherz

    Of course he could have, Moses, so could have Johnson when he realized how wrong he had been to expand it, but rather than admit he was wrong, he did not seek a second term. We have been a warring country all of my life and long before then, but with Viet Nam, it began to be about controlling other countries politics and natural resources, the same as we had done with the Native Americans here, in controlling the gold and other minerals.

  19. larry kurtz

    This is the silliest post at DFP so far: funny, Cory.

  20. There is no blog truth, and very little blog virtue.

  21. Roger Cornelius

    Why would anybody bother to read a blog if they consider it silly? Wouldn’t that be below their blog standards?

  22. Jeff Barth

    There are the things we know and then there are the things we know that aren’t so.

  23. mike from iowa

    Nixon got the exact same peace terms with the Commies in 73 that had been brokered in 1970. Nixon wouldn’t accept it in 70 and he widened the war illegally and facilitated many more casualties. Nixon and his bestest buddy Kissinger should have been tried and executed as war criminals.

  24. Steve Hickey

    Civil blog discussion among people who use their actual identities is a good. And I love to hear you speak of virtue. That is a matter I’ve been deep into this fall, ethics and virtue theory. Curious that virtue theorists today are concluding it all falls apart without some moral basis in God. But, that’s for another day.

    Since you are invoking my name in this string of comments perhaps Cory will tolerate a link to one of my websites where I’m addressing the accusations of fear and fear mongering people like Roger are tossing my way. And please yes, let’s talk about the virtue of prudence and how many confuse it today with fear. They are not the same. If you only have interest or time for a bit of what I’ve written at this link below then read the first and then the last couple paragraphs where I speak specifically about Islamaphobia and Hoplophobia.

  25. Lanny V Stricherz

    Reverend Hickey, I read your very interesting blog post, which you cited. On it you wrote, “Islamophobia doesn’t describe the people I know. But it is frightening what that Koran actually teaches. It is frightening to think of how Islam regards and treats women. It is frightening to hear the rhetoric coming from various Imams. But is that Islamophobia?”

    Is there anything in the bible that is frightening? Is it any different the way radical Islam treats women and the way they are treated in radical Christianity? The amazing part of how women are treated in the world of Islam, five of the countries where they are treated as equals and as having worth are the very ones that we have opposed and helped to overthrow their governments, i.e Iraq, Libya, Syria (not finished yet) Afghanistan and Iran, and we are trying to overthrow Iran’s government a second time. The one country that remains our closest ally other than Israel in the Middle East, is Saudi Arabia, which is the most radical Islamic state and also disrespects women more today than ever.

    My Dad’s parents were immigrants from Germany at the end of the 19th century. During WWI, when my father was 10 years old, he and his 9 siblings got to see the good Christians of South Dakota in all of their splendor, paint yellow streaks on their barn, because they were of German decent, even though they were good Americans.

  26. Travis Wicks

    Steve, I respectfully disagree with a lot of what you wrote in your post. One, in particular, stood out to me:

    “When I went to high school I had a shotgun in my pick up in the school parking lot. No big deal. We don’t have guns because we are afraid.

    I thought the caption from a meme says it well… ‘Seriously. Conservatives own 200+ million guns, 12 trillion rounds of ammo. If we were violent, you’d know it.'”

    I just saw a report on the news late last week that said gun shop owners see a significant increase in business immediately after a highly publicized mass shooting. Wouldn’t you infer that to mean that people are buying guns because they are afraid, because that’s the conclusion I logically arrive at.

    Another quote of yours:

    “Islamophobia doesn’t describe the people I know. But it is frightening what that Koran actually teaches. It is frightening to think of how Islam regards and treats women. It is frightening to hear the rhetoric coming from various Imams. But is that Islamophobia? Perhaps we could say there are two paths before us, wisdom and foolishness. It is a fair game discussion to be asking whether or not it is foolish to have wide open borders right now.”

    You could replace Islamophobia with Fundamentalist Christians, Koran with the Old Testament, Imams with Pastors, and Islam with Christianity and it would be just as true. In fact, let’s look at that with those replacements:

    “Fundamentalist Christian” doesn’t describe the people I know. But it is frightening what that “Old Testament” actually teaches. It is frightening to think of how “Christianity” regards and treats women. It is frightening to hear the rhetoric coming from various “Pastors”. But is that “Fundamentalist Christianity?” Perhaps we could say there are two paths before us, wisdom and foolishness. It is a fair game discussion to be asking whether or not it is foolish to have wide open borders right now.

    My point is that many people such as myself fear the radicalization of Christianity by the right wing of this country. They seem to prey on people’s fear, they judge anyone different from them, they foment xenophobia, and they talk in terms of absolutes. Is that what Jesus taught us?

    I am a Christian. I have been raised a Lutheran, I taught Sunday School (still do), worked as a Bible Camp Counselor, and I was a youth ministry director before I became a teacher. I do have a decent understanding of the principles of Christianity. What brings me despair is that most of the “Christian Leaders” that I read about or see on TV preach nothing of Jesus’ teachings; they teach us to hate, fear, and worship golden calves (Prosperity Gospel? My stomach roils at the words that come from the Osteens and the megachurches).

    The face of Jesus is in those refugees you think we need to be wary of. There’s a chance there may be a terrorist in there as well, but would you turn away Christ in order to protect yourself from the possibility of evil as well? That doesn’t sound like Faith to me.

    God Bless you, Steve, that’s just my 2 cents on the matter.

  27. Lanny V Stricherz

    Darn you beat me to it, Mr Wicks. One if my original thoughts was, what if Jesus is disguised as one of those Syrian refugees? How will he be treated? And in my previous post, I forgot to mention Christianity’s greatest travesty of all. The treatment of Native Americans in North, South and Central America for the last 5 1/4 centuries right up until the present day. For reference see the blog on the IHS from two days ago.

  28. Porter Lansing

    Hear, hear Messieurs Stricherz and Wicks. Well said in rebuttal of Hickey’s assertions.
    PS … It would be easy and appropriate for me to discuss Mr. Hickey’s ethics and what burden of guilt he carries for his false witness against Planned Parenthood last summer which (so far) has contributed to three dead and twelve wounded in Colorado. However, after our last debate on the issue Mr. Hickey begged me to “leave him alone” (with his accusations; still never apologized for or retracted).

  29. Lanny, Travis, and Porter…….. Thank you

  30. Steve Hickey

    The Christian Bible is very different and isn’t commanding believers to violence. In fact it’s the opposite. Women are liberated in the ministry of Jesus and in Christianity. So called Christian nations enjoy freedoms and nations ruled by Shari’ah law are very dark and miserable places to be. At some point as the Left opens wide the door to Shari’ah law, and they are, they will rue the day as they wake up to what that means for gays, women and free speech. No more art-in-the-name-of-free-speech pissing on the sacred.

    Porter – your heckling of me in various forms and times fall on deaf ears. I refuse to be lectured on gun control and violence in society from a guy who thinks it’s not a baby until birth and that it’s okay to kill them.

  31. Lanny V Stricherz

    Reverend Hickey, You write as if the Old Testament is not part of the Christian Bible. How is Sharia law and its treatment of women and gays, any different than the treatment of the same by fundamentalist Christians?

  32. Porter Lansing

    Cells reproduce before you are a life and cells reproduce after you’ve died. Your assertion that, left alone a zygote will become a human, so it’s rights begin before it’s birth would then reciprocate into this. A 90 year old man, if left alone will become a corpse so his rights can be denied before his death. Human rights don’t begin until you’re born and human rights don’t end until you die. You’re not a baby until you’re born and you’re not a corpse until you die.
    PS…if you call this heckling you’ve an over inflated sense of self importance, common among religious pundits.

  33. Steve Hickey

    The Old Testament is very much a part of the Bible. I don’t read it apart from the New Testament though. It’s like taking the first half of the story in God’s dealings with humanity and ignoring the latter half of the story. They are a unity. With the Koran however, the more recent texts are the more authoritative. And those are the despicable one calling for violence.

  34. Steve Hickey

    Please forgive Porter when he starts pontificating about what constitutes a living human being. It’s obvious he’s never had children himself. And, he refuses to leave 1973 – scientifically speaking. We know scientifically when human life begins, Porter. You, like a slaveholder, have the view that some humans are more human than others. You’d more easily grant “rights” to animals than to a biological human. I don’t know why I feed you.

  35. larry kurtz

    Steve Hickey has more integrity than this blog’s author and every contributor here save BCB.

    Hickey for Governor.

  36. Steve Hickey

    I’ve pissed off or alienated every group of people across the political spectrum that it would take to get to be governor. Maybe my campaign slogan should be I promise to disappoint your group at some point too. My story is that politics have made me a better person, more human, more willing to listen and try to understand. Politics make others worse people than they were before. The difference is this core of virtue within that Cory is highlighting in this post.

  37. bearcreekbat

    In an experiment some Dutch folks put a Koran cover over the Bible and had people read from it and comment on what they read. The opinions revealed deep prejudice against Islam and shock when they learned it was the Bible not the Koran that they had read from.

    Personally, when I studied the Bible from cover to cover I was amazed at the horrors and cruelty attributed to the God described by the Bible.

    For example, the annual Passover celebrates the murder of first born children.

    The story of Daniel and the Lion’s Den celebrates the lions slaughtering the wife and children of the guy who turned Daniel in for his illegal prayers.

    In the New Testament, Jesus discusses how he will torture Jezabel for having unapproved sex and says: “I will strike her children dead,” even though the kids apparently did nothing wrong. Revelations 2:23 (NIV).

    And Jesus teaches the following family values: “”If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters–yes, even their own life–such a person cannot be my disciple.” Luke 14:26 (NIV).

    Funny, however, how the Bible treats abortion. While there is no explicit condemnation of abortion, there are several references to the unborn as not being worthy of life. Here is a pretty direct statement about the value of an unborn child: “The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open.” Hosea 13:16.

    And people who worship this kind of Biblical teaching want to label worshipers of the Koran crazy?

  38. Lanny V Stricherz

    bcb, Thank you for some excellent points. There are also a few that I always wonder about, whenever the discussion about abortion comes about. I think about the killing of the “holy innocents” the boys under two years old when Herrod was trying to kill Jesus, the would be king whom he thought had come to take his place. I think of all the fetuses that are miscarried.

    And finally, I wonder how the same folks who can ridicule a woman for having an abortion, perhaps because she cannot see any way clear to provide for that child, refuse to provide healthcare and education for all of the children that are under the purvey of their governance.

  39. Bob Newland

    Yes, Steve Hickey, I noticed that you listened to, then ignored the evidence that cannabis provides benefits to many sick, disabled and dying people.

  40. Roger E, thank you. I’m glad you find the facts and discussion here useful. Of course, sharp debaters (a “sophist,” my philosophical friends might call them) could slap mocking quote marks around those “facts” and contend that I choose the supposedly “objective” evidence that I use as starting points for discussions by a very subjective process, driven by an agenda committed to “winning” over “seeking truth”… to which I could only respond that we have to start somewhere.

    Roger C, I do believe a Trump-Hitler type (and, my goodness, could he have made his fascist fearmongering any clearer than with his call to bar members of one specific religion from entering the USA?) could take over this country. I believe there would be fierce opposition—I would be part of that opposition—and I want to believe that opposition would win, but the fact that Donald Trump hasn’t been laughed and booed off the stage yet warns us that support for such a neo-Hitler could also be fierce. Beware brownshirts at the Iowa caucus.

  41. Steve, I need a moment to give your blog post the attention it deserves. It may warrant a separate blog post.

    But as to the topic of this post, does the duty to treat the people with whom we are speaking with “respect, goodwill, and patience” extend to how we treat the people about whom we are speaking, in this case, the followers of Islam?

  42. Steve Hickey

    The big picture is what is being missed entirely in the above comments regarding violence in the Bible.

    Simply put, the Old Testament among other things, reveals God as holy and tells the long tale of a series of attempts to relate to human beings who are not. Immediate judgment on sins and sinners demonstrated the fact that sin equals death and yet people keep choosing sin.

    God decides to break in (New Testament) and deal with the matters of how sinful people can relate to God. His judgment fell fully on Jesus for sin, and no longer falls in an immediate sense on the rest of the world. At some point, if he is truly just, the time will come when he right every wrong. At that time, those who claim the sacrifice of Jesus for themselves don’t have to pay the price for themselves. Does that help? Probably not.

    The narrative in Islam is anything but a god who wants to relate to people who have strayed.

  43. Steve Hickey

    Bob – it was Steve Hickey who went to the AG last year and tried to get together a bill for cannabis oils. My sympathies were noted by others, sorry you didn’t detect them.

  44. bearcreekbat

    I note that Hickey tells Porter that he is “like a slaveholder,” and has “the view that some humans are more human than others.”

    That seems to be exactly what our Jewish and Christian Bibles teach. For example, the lives of regular Egyptians (as well as all non-Hebrews and later all non-Christians) clearly had less value in the eyes of God than the lives of the Hebrews.

    And impugning Porter’s character by equating him to a slaveholder is hardly an example of virtuous dialogue. Porter might have different opinions than Hickey, but that doesn’t seem to justify demeaning him with obnoxious name calling or pejorative labels.

  45. Steve Hickey

    Absolutely Cory all this applies to Muslims. When I speak on these things I make clear the issue is with Islam, NOT Muslims. And I do appreciate it when people speak precisely about Christianity as opposed to Christians. They aren’t the same either. Just become some Christians are jerks doesn’t mean Jesus was. And just because Islam is frightening, doesn’t mean Muslims are. That’s my vantage point.

    I’m not sure how you separate the two in terms of policy. Trump lumps them all together. Not fair. Not America. Yet, how is that any different than the Left lumping Christians and a desire for theocracy in the same pile?

    From my understanding, unless a person is a lousy follower of Islam, wishing for Shari’ah law and a Caliphate control in America, is fundamentally anti-American. It’s theocracy, entirely. Help me understand how you can discern a faint whiff of theocracy when any Christian walks in the room but a mass of Muslims come in and you think they just want to be good neighbours?

  46. Steve Hickey

    An additional thought. My dad used to talk about the madness of war in Vietnam – he’d rush in on families and they’d say; no VC, no VC, no VC. Believing them could have been fatal. They kept their guard up. And so we have masses of Muslim humanity coming and we know sprinkled in their midst are invaders. Perhaps it is now impossible to tell who is who anymore but in these times its not unChristianly to try. Also maybe I’m not alone in thinking there are those (including Obama) who are using these humanitarian crises to divert our attention off what is really transpiring. We can continue to believe we aren’t at war with the Muslim world but their leaders have declared war on us. I’m not saying anything here new so I’ll leave it at that.

    It’d be interesting to have this open border conversation on the Rez. Open borders resulted in genocide. No?

  47. mike from iowa

    Dearth Dickwad Darth Cheney says we need to allow Syrians into America-apparently the NRA and gun makers need the extra business or Cheney is interested in waterboarding them for practice. Either way,it is a miracle on Cheney’s path towards salvation until one remembers he has someone else’s heart.

  48. Not sure whether I should be surprised (or just disappointed) that this philosophical discussion has been turned into a religious debate, with predictable detours down abortion ave and cannabis court. It has ceased to be ‘virtuous’ or a search for ‘truth’ … (imho).

  49. bearcreekbat

    I may have missed it, but I haven’t seen references to state or federal lawmakers introducing legislation to advance Islam.

    In contrast, the number of bills and proposals attempting to make Christian views the law in America seem ubiquitous. From using religious ideas to enact laws that restrict or deny women their settled Constitutional rights to legislation requiring school books to reflect Biblical teachings, such as creationism, the onslaught is like a broken down dam (thanks John Prine).

    Anyone who honestly compares the theocratic threat in America from Islam and Christianity can come to only one conclusion – if America is moving toward a theocracy, it is a Christian theocracy.

  50. Can we talk about Islam without talking about its followers… especially if we are talking about public policy? Does Islam have any force outside of the words and actions of its believers? Does Christianity have any force outside of the words and actions of its believers?

    Would Donald Trump’s philosophical assessment of Islam have any relevance to the Presidential race without his recommendations for dealing with Muslims? Does my philosophical assessment of Christianity affect my duty to treat Christians with respect, goodwill, and patience in discourse, not to mention fairness in public policy?

    Believe me, Steve, I smell al-Baghdadi’s theocracy. As a genuine infidel, with no claim to any god, I may stand to lose more in a theocracy than folks who can at least claim to share a belief in the God of Abraham. If al-Baghdadi’s people try taking over our city councils, school boards, and state legislature, I will join you in trying to crush them at the polls and, if necessary, in the courts.

    But the San Bernadino shooters aren’t theocrats, not directly. They’re killers. They pose(d) a different threat, one that pretty much everyone recognizes is a threat. If two psychos walk into a room with assault rifles, I don’t have to explain to everyone why we need to run, duck, or shoot back (but note what Hickey says about shooting back on the macro scale in his November 14 post—bloodshed feeds bloodlust). When Dale Bartscher walks into a town hall and says we shouldn’t separate church and state, I do have to work hard to persuade my neighbors that Dale is offering bad medicine.

    I also don’t think I’m obliged to engage in civil discourse with the San Bernadino shooters. Their threat lies beyond the parameters of seeking truth and virtue that we are discussing here.

  51. mike from iowa

    Okay,all you religious experts out there.if god created everything why wasn’t jeebus able to purchase an Uzi-Israeli made- and blast his way out of crucifiction?

    Is it because god didn’t create everything or it was godswill that biblical history maintain that jeebus was crucified for other people’s sins?

  52. Travis Wicks

    “From my understanding, unless a person is a lousy follower of Islam, wishing for Shari’ah law and a Caliphate control in America, is fundamentally anti-American. It’s theocracy, entirely. Help me understand how you can discern a faint whiff of theocracy when any Christian walks in the room but a mass of Muslims come in and you think they just want to be good neighbours?”

    Be specific, Steve, and give us some examples of when this actually has happened. If you are speaking in generalities, then you are propagandizing your agenda without substantial evidence on your side. I don’t have an agenda, myself, other than not wanting people to make decisions or come to conclusions based on fear/ignorance/prejudice and claim they align with Christian faith to do so. I try to generalize as little as possible, whether or not it’s about the virtues or evils of Christianity or Islam, even though I’m only human and make mistakes and unknowingly adhere to unconscious prejudices.

    “Also maybe I’m not alone in thinking there are those (including Obama) who are using these humanitarian crises to divert our attention off what is really transpiring.”

    On this, I am thoroughly confused. What is Obama trying to divert our attention from? This, to me, sounds a lot like right-wing conspiracy theories that Trump, Carson, and others like them have been trumpeting since 2008, demanding Obama’s birth certificate. Again, please be specific and type plainly what you are alluding or inferring to.

  53. bearcreekbat

    mfi – interesting search results! I forgot that the President is considered to be a Muslim by so many writers, hence requiring soldiers to obey the laws of the Country they are stationed in must be the equivalent of forcing Sharia law on all Americans.

    How about state and federal legislators – what sort of Muslim laws have they proposed or enacted here in South Dakota and throughout the USA?

  54. bearcreekbat

    Republicans have good news for atheists. According to her Salon article about Trump’s islamophobia rants, Digby tells us that: “Recent polling shows that Americans at large think Muslims are only slightly less reprehensible than atheists. Republicans think atheists are actually better.”

  55. Steve Hickey, you have every right to be a proud ammosexual Christian, just please be a responsible one.
    BCB, many bible quotes do seem to promote disgrace, hate, whatever you want to call it. Also, the ‘spare the rod spoil the child’ proverb, could be read as promoting severe child punishment.
    This anti-muslim movement reminds me of the Communism hysteria of the 1950s.

  56. Are republicans going through Alice in Wonderland’s looking glass? Here now, they are. They refuse to believe in climate change because they were conditioned to that group think and now their patrons want to put the brakes on, but they are to ignorant to take heed. They must be high.

  57. Cory, did you ban my friend, Lynn? Haven’t seen her on here for awhile.

  58. bearcreekbat

    Jenny, you are right. The book of Proverbs has repeated admonitions against sparing the rod:

    Proverbs 23:13 – Withhold not correction from the child: for [if] thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die.

    Proverbs 23:14 – Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and shalt deliver his soul from hell.

    Proverbs 22:15 – Foolishness [is] bound in the heart of a child; [but] the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.

    Proverbs 13:24 – He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.

    And here’s how those Biblical admonitions led to the death of a 7 year old in California:

  59. Daniel Buresh

    ammosexual….textbook example of a thinly-veiled attack. Suggesting a sexual perversion towards ammo and guns because your beliefs differ? How tolerant of you Jenny. Such liberal slurs will make for great civil discourse.

  60. Jenny,

    I’m here. Lack of interest and been busy offline with making calls.

    I will say that that every person that I’ve known who just happened to be Muslim and I could care less since I valued our friendship or interactions as just another human being were either peacemakers or just working stiffs just like the rest of us trying to get ahead in life. It is an extremely small minority in the greater scheme of things that harbor so much hatred and anger to the point they wish to harm others. We could say that about other non-Muslim groups in the world also.

  61. Jenny,

    You probably know just going to Lake Street in Minneapolis especially around the Midtown Exchange which is a really cool area. Very diverse with many who came from East Africa. I’ve never felt any sense of fear there but a sense of adventure of shopping, meeting new people and trying new things at the various markets and cafes.

  62. Good to hear from you, Lynn and totally agree about the Muslim population – very good people. I love the Sambusas that Somalis make.

    I was going to get after Cory if he had banned you1

  63. mike from iowa

    That was funny,bcb. OTOH,Hamtramck,Michigan is the first city to become Muslim majority. It is another suburb of Detroit I believe.

  64. Lighten, Dan, it’s just a kind-hearted joke.

  65. Lanny V Stricherz

    When I got to Minneapolis three weeks ago, to catch the Veterans For Peace to go to Ft Benning to protest the School of the Americas, my Daughter-in-law who is an assistant principal was hosting a reading night at the school from 5:00 to 7:00 PM. I went with her and my son who also is a teacher’s assistant there, and also with my three grandchildren. Over half the families in that school are Somali. There were not nearly as many traditional Americans at that reading night as there were Somali families. They showed an immense interest in what their children were doing in school, as do most parents of children who are not considered privileged. I was so thrilled to be able to read with children who were 5 to ten years old, and pleasantly surprised to see how well they did.

  66. Lanny V Stricherz

    Just got an email from, Faithful America, saying that last week Jerry Falwell gave a talk to students at his Liberty University, asking them to carry guns to kill Muslims.

  67. Jenny,

    Cool! I’ll check that out next time I’m there. Thank you! A good example is a pizza place close to 50th & France and a young couple in their mid to late 20s that were originally from Morocco and were ethnically Berbers. They lived in Spain and mostly in France going to school working in cafes before moving to the states.

    They worked 80 hours a week getting their business established and the fusion of ethnic foods on their menu taste, portions and price were incredible compared to the big chains. We would visit for hours about Morocco, their family farm, village and Islamic historical figures in between customers picking up their orders. They were very worldly, humble, nice and educated in a way and very popular with customers who wanted them to succeed. Guess what? They happened to be Muslim. So what!

    All these Syrian refugees that see this as the land of opportunity like my friends and they are suffering more being denied access to the US because of a very small group of anger consumed individuals.

  68. Daniel Buresh

    Joke?…Jenny, it only becomes a joke to you when you get called out for it. Your intentions are to belittle and to portray it as if you are speaking to someone with a disorder. Not buying into it.

    Anecdotal evidence shouldn’t even be considered. A Somalian refugee killed an entire family in ND not that long ago, and a teacher a month or so ago in MN was suspended for pointing out the problems with Somalian students not attending school or being committed to their education, but was reinstated after the public outcry and his email being released showing nothing harmful was written. What does that mean? Absolutely nothing.

  69. Roger Cornelius

    Steve Hickey is getting seriously schooled by David Newquest at Northern Valley Beacon blog.

  70. mike from iowa

    Ammosexuals depicts foaming-at-the-mouth wingnut gun crazies accurately. There aren’t that many on this site and they don’t chime in very often,but they are out there.

  71. Daniel Buresh

    We get it, you like using slurs and because you think you are right it makes it ok. It only destroys what little credibility you have, if you had any to begin with.

  72. Steve Sibson

    “We need multiple voices all along the political spectrum communicating with each other, alternately rebutting and reinforcing each other. We need Republicans, Democrats, Independents, and other voices in this comment section so we don’t fall into the ideological echo chamber Daniel describes.”

    So am I still banned?

  73. Travis Wicks

    I have to agree with Daniel, using slurs and name calling is the exact opposite of trying to be philosophically virtuous and open minded to truth, whether we agree with that truth or not.

    I may disagree with a few, some, or even many of you fellow commenters at different times, but those differences in opinion do not mean there is something wrong with either you or me.

    Debating these issues should either sharpen your perspective on the matter, or make you question your original beliefs. Too often, people take differences in beliefs personally as an affront to who they are, and then try to tear down anything that doesn’t conform to their subscribed vision of how things should be. That makes the person doing it as ignorant, close-minded, and petty as they think their dissenter is.

  74. larry kurtz

    Sibby, what’s Lynn’s last name?

  75. Welcome back Sibby! I voted yes for a new Mitchell indoor pool today.

  76. mike from iowa

    Ammosexual is not a slur. It is a perfectly accurate description of people who seem to have trouble with testosterone levels and believe waving and wagging their guns will make them appear to be brave.

  77. Oh come on you guys, just having a little fun with gun owners like this!

  78. mike from iowa

    ps I have made it abundantly clear that I am prolly the least educated poster on this site, I value everyone’s thoughts and musings. I just don’t have to believe them.

  79. Lanny V Stricherz

    Well mfi, you may be the least educated one on this or any blog, but I would never be able to tell. I can assure you, that I have always thought from your posts that you are one of the most well read persons on this blog.

  80. Sibster, welcome back dude!
    Don’t give Larry Lynn’s last name, Sib. I don’t trust him, probably wants to harass her everywhere online.

  81. larry kurtz

    Sibby doesn’t know because Lynn isn’t her/his real name.

  82. Jenny,

    It’s one of Larry’s paranoid fixations. He posted that he suspected that I was one of his 4 or more ex wives, Pat Powers, a SDGOP black ops operative sewing the seeds of destruction to who knows what else. The last stalker ended up in jail and with a felony so I know who to contact if it ever becomes an issue.

  83. bearcreekbat

    Roger, thanks for the heads up about the discussion between Newquest and Hickey. Hickey’s comments there have really opened my eyes about his thinking process.

    Hickey likes liars like Fiorina, apparently because lies are fine if they demonize Planned Parenthood. But then he says the “fact checkers” are all liberal liars who he doesn’t believe. Instead, Hickey cites to Ben Stein, the Howard Stern show and Breitbart since what they have said apparently fits his preconceived views on particular topics (Howard Stern of all exploiters – really Pastor Hickey?

    He dismisses climate scientists as frauds who are simply trying to get grants and asserts the scientific theory of evolution is a “fairytale.” He seems to think college and university professors are all liberal propaganda machines.

    While I really appreciate Hickey’s position on the death sentence, his other comments show a conspiracy like belief system that appears locked in – Hickey considers any factual discrepancy with his opinions to be part of some great liberal conspiracy to trick us all. Such views make it difficult to carry on a rational discussion.

  84. mike from iowa

    I appreciate your comments, Mr Stricherz.

  85. mike from iowa

    The feelings are mutual.

  86. On banning individuals from the comment section: I appreciate the principles Pearce lays out above for “virtuous” discourse. We should not turn arguments about issues into arguments about the people making the arguments. But we also should not let certain single-minded arguers turn every argument into a discussion about themselves (or the extensions of themselves that they see in their pet peeves and shibboleths).

    Ad hominem attacks are not virtuous or useful. Neither is narcissism.

  87. mfi, does Cheney remind you of sling blade? I am thinking spitting image, even sound alike

  88. bearcreekbat

    Lynn and Jenny, thanks for your comments about Muslims. While Lynn and I disagree on other matters I am glad to see we agree on the value of our friends and neighbors who share different religions.

    Your experiences in the various ethnic communities in Minneapolis is especially important. By sharing what you have experienced perhaps this will open some eyes (maybe even Hickeys, unless he decides you are liberal propaganda tools).

  89. mike from iowa

    Sorry Jerry,I have never seen sling blade. Have no idea what it is all about. Cheney would make a great Cheney. Don’t know if he has an equal unless it would be the devil.

  90. Liberal propaganda tool? I’m supposedly a Right Wing Nut here. lol :)

  91. bearcreekbat

    Lynn, isn’t it funny how people want to label each other just because they disagree on particular public policies.

  92. Ms. Lynn, for a liberal propaganda tool you are saner than most.

  93. larry kurtz

    grud’s unicorn addresses lynn’s passenger pigeon: priceless.

  94. Lanny V Stricherz

    Well one of the two of you had to be Grudz.

    Sorry, Grudz, the devil made me do it.

  95. Grudz, Thank you for the compliment! After seeing the craziness here on this blog and statewide in South Dakota I’d say I’m more of an Independent and more center oriented now.

  96. Yes, there are libbies and whack jobs on the ends of the scale who are definitely insaner than most. It is interesting and entertaining that Mr. H’s blog attracts them all.

    You probably would enjoy a hearty breakfast with the Conservatives with Common Sense, Ms. Lynn. We discuss many of these issues in a polite and common sense manner.

  97. Grudz,

    No worries about being hit over the head with a claw hammer or someone traveling to give another two black eyes if they disagree at this Conservatives with Common Sense breakfast?

  98. I, myself, often peer around and make sure there’s no one wearing a bowler hat waving a claw hammer over by the hostess station but I don’t think my good friend Bob has a working car anymore these days.

    Plus I think he is sour on breakfast these days.

  99. Roger Cornelius

    Lynn is a real person and a great woman, I know her. She maybe a figment of someone’s imagination, but she is real.

    I was struck by Hickey’s comments on Newquest’s blog, he doesn’t seem to say those say things here. He is still locked into the 2008 and 2012 presidential campaign tea party campaign rhetoric.
    Hickey still believes Breitbart was murdered, even Lee Stranahan, Breibbart reporter has dismissed his death as conspiracy theory.

  100. bearcreekbat

    Roger, I was pleased to find common ground with Lynn on the Muslim question and I highly respect your opinion of her, despite my policy issues with her on another topic. Your endorsement of her is a huge plus on her side.

    I was surprised to read Hickey’s comments and arguments on the Newquest blog. These comments really made me question the validity of Hickey’s positions on other issues. He seems deeply invested in conspiracy theories, which tends to expose the underlying thoughts behind the policies he supports.

  101. Roger,

    Thank you! I really appreciate it especially coming from you!

    Do you feel we need more diversity here in South Dakota? There seems to be this fear of the unknown being somewhat of a fortress America, bunker and apocalypse mentality. Fear of Syrian refugees to fear of some imaginary paramilitary LGBT commandos storming Pierre during the legislative session. I tried contacting this supposed organization quoted by Brock Greenfield and another organization by another legislator and I never got a response. Is this all made up to drive an agenda? I have no idea.

    People are just people with refreshingly boring lives just like everyone else.

  102. Lanny V Stricherz

    Lynn, Just think, two and three generations before me the worry was about the Native Americans. Look what we did and are doing to them. Are we destined to commit the same idiotic mistakes again? I think often of something my Father always used to say when a couple or more of us 7 kids would start wrangling. “Can’t we just get along?”

  103. Imagine the resistance Sen Jim Abdnor or Sen Jim Abourezk’s ancestors or they themselves and their family would face in today’s environment making a go of it if they had just recently arrived to the US.

  104. mike from iowa

    I wonder which side of the political spectrum would be hard on Abdnor and Abourezk today? Prolly the same ones who railed about a Muslim Democrat from Minnesota being elected to congress.

  105. Lanny V Stricherz

    Lynn, Senator Abourezk is a friend of mine, in fact I had lunch with him today. Not to be a name dropper, I am not for positive that he would say that I am a friend of his. I don’t know if you are aware, but his wife Sanaa, who has an excellent Mediterranean restaurant by the name Sanaa’s, is from Syria and still has family there. Although she is continually worried for them, she and her family and more than half of the Syrian population still support Assad. It still amazes me that of all the thugs who have their boot on the throat of their population around this planet, the only ones that we seem intent on toppling, are the ones who have the support of their own people.

  106. Roger Cornelius

    The federal government for generations tried to lock up Indians on reservations and kill them if they didn’t stay there, it didn’t work. FDR did it with the Japanese and it was wrong than just as it is wrong today. We paid a price for these illegal incarcerations that can still be felt today.
    Lynn, absolutely this state could use more diversity, the state’s minority population is almost insignificant and that has drastic political ramifications and is the cause of ongoing racial discrimination.
    Characters like Trump and his ilk believe that America is white and more specifically white male, no else matters in their tiny little world. Observe if you will the panic they go into when any social change is suggested or implemented. The heated debate over marriage equality this past year is a great example.
    Perhaps white males should be in a full panic mode, they are quickly becoming a minority themselves in part of national diversity.

  107. Lanny,

    Sanaa’s is a destination in Sioux Falls. She is incredible! That is great you had lunch with Senator Abourezk. War is horrid with all the suffering.

  108. Lanny V Stricherz

    So why are you dragging that rag on here, Larry? I won’t comment on the last one, but on the first two. While PP mentions the fact that Adelstein supported little known Mike Rounds in 2002, he doesn’t mention the fact that he took him on a six day tour of Israel to worship at the thrones of Netanyahu, Shimon Peres and the Kneset. Nor does he mention the fact that it was the first stop for MMR, after he announced that he was running for the US Senate. That trip of course lined him up with the Israeli lobby, of which PP makes little mention in his second post.

    The organ harvesting was the big deal that the Israeli lobby including, that Sioux Falls newspaper liked to make such a big deal about, but Alison Weir was here to shed light on the fact that our government is owned by Israel, through the Israeli lobby. At the time our congress was appropriating 9 million dollars a day to Israel. That amount has now grown to 10 million dollars a day and does not include the two missile shields that we gave Israel.

    The Israeli lobby, and PP like to defame Senator Abourezk by calling him anti semitic, but he like myself does not dislike Jews, only zionists. They control our congress and our last three Presidents. The last one to stand up to them, GHW Bush only got to serve one term and they were largely the reason. Stop to think. A US Senate that cannot agree on from which direction the sun comes up or sets, much less anything that is beneficial to the American people, will vote 100-0 time after time on propositions for Israel.

  109. larry kurtz

    looks like you answered your own question, lanny. hypocrisy and blog virtue are mutually exclusive.

  110. larry kurtz

    anyone else?

  111. larry kurtz

    you miserable bastards.

  112. Lanny V Stricherz

    Hey larry, is that better than being Inglorious Bastards, like the Jewish Nazi killer American soldiers in the Brad Pitt movie?

  113. Steve Hickey

    Tossing up the BS flag when stuff seems amiss in the official narrative is what happen on this blog every day. Whether it be the EB5 or Platte money and murders or Breitbart. Hillary has her vast right wing conspiracies and I have mine about her. Thinking people challenging the narrative we are fed is good. Government narratives are not believable these days, either party.

    Roger, no comments on my open borders question above? Didn’t they give us a genocide here? Of course my views there get me tossed out of the fellowship of the right side of the aisle.

  114. Civil discourse…When? How can we listen to Trump and the rest of the republican candidates lead us down the path to more war in the Middle East.

  115. Bill Fleming

    Hickey, your open borders question to Roger is stupid, not to mention disingenuous. It doesn’t surprise me in the least he would have no interest in dignifying it with an answer.

  116. Steve Sibson

    “But we also should not let certain single-minded arguers turn every argument into a discussion about themselves (or the extensions of themselves that they see in their pet peeves and shibboleths).

    Ad hominem attacks are not virtuous or useful. Neither is narcissism.”

    So each person establishing their own truth so that they can promote killing children before they see the light of day is virtuous?

  117. Roger Cornelius

    Steve H.
    Indeed the open borders allowed the genocide of thousands of Indians, there is no denying that.
    The primary reason that reservation had and have open borders is that the federal government wouldn’t allow it, they had the power and control. The reason being is that the government wanted access to all the natural resources on the reservations.
    I don’t know if a wall would have protected Indians from white invaders, walls exist only for people to scale them.

  118. Roger Cornelius

    I’m pretty certain I’m not a bastard!

  119. Mr. C, you are not a bastard in either sense of the word. Sleep tight on that, sir.
    I don’t expect Mr. Hickey is either.

  120. Of course Mr. Hickey doesn’t live in South Dakota any more so his input has to be salted with a grain.

  121. Steve Hickey

    Newquist gets the last word and closes comments. Obviously I was an irritation to him. His blog isn’t a place for the dialog proposed in Cory’s post here. I wasn’t getting schooled there. He dismissed the content of my views on academia today and refused to deal with it. Hopefully there is more freedom in his classroom and in student assignments for people like me who don’t just parrot back to him kudos and things he wants to hear. He comes across as a closed-minded opinionated elitist and to him I’m the whacko.

  122. I review the Newquist–Hickey dialogue and wonder how we bridge the gap between views that are kept separate by an infinite relativism and establish consensus on truth? No matter what sources Newquist brings forward to dismiss the lies of Trump and Fiorina, Hickey resorts to the tactic I mention to Roger E at 11:39, deeming all of his opponents’ sources subjective and biased. The conservative relativist can defend any position by saying to opponents, “That’s just your opinion.” The conservative relativist can dismiss any expert by saying, “He/she is part of the Leftist Establishment.” How can correct ignorance and error when the ignorant and erring can grease themselves with this relativism?

  123. Steve Hickey

    What you are saying of me, is precisely what Newquist was doing. Please note right out of the box he dismissed my point as unscholarly – he questioned my sources first as subjective and biased. Then I noted his were as well. He tossed out some insulting bait I didn’t take – reference to Bonhoeffer. I laughed. Everyone hi-jacks the Bonhoeffer legacy for their own purposes. Unsuccessfully I tried to point out his opinions of Fiorina seemed odd in light of Hillary getting a free pass on scores of lies.

    Bottom line, there was no interest on his part for a free exchange of ideas. I feel like I can learn something from Newquist and he has no interest to learn something from me.

  124. Steve,

    Your sources are not very good and I’ve pointed that out to you on another issue but it’s your sense of reality. An apocalyptic, bunker mentality that is filled with fear. What you accuse Dr, Newquist of you have done to others.

  125. Steve Hickey

    On sources. Sitting on the Health and Human Services Committee for five years it was so clear that every opinion has it’s acceptable sources. There were two groups of scientists paraded before us to tell us it is proven that BPA in plastic bottles was harmless and the other said it is proven to kill you. On vaccinations there are two opposing views each with scientific claims to back up their view. Big Pharm and Big Medicine were held entirely in suspect by some and reps from those groups in turn regarded any thinking outside their accepted script to be naturopathic quackery. There are two groups of scientists on Climate Change. There are two groups on GMO and Ag issues each with their data and findings ill regarded by the other. There are two groups of scientists on Intelligent Design and origin issues. There are two groups of scientists on gender issues. There are two groups of economic theorists. There are two groups of historians on US History, Nazi Germany and Native American history.

    It is curious to me that Cory’s analysis of the Newquist-Hickey exchange isolated me as the questioner of sources when Newquist was the one started and continued to the end to marginalise my sources.

    Absolutely I’ve done to others what Newquist has done to me. I’m doing it less often though. My vantage point these days is prudence not fear. I’m in no way being a separatist from the world and holing out in some bunker.

  126. barry freed

    Hemlock is poisonous?

    I know what is truth, I know what is beauty, I know not what is poisonous.

    Steve Martin as Socrates

  127. David Newquist

    There are basic standards used in every educational institution and news organization for assessing the credibility of sources of information. The Rev. Hickey’s sources would not be acceptable in any such institution that I know of. Here is the cheat sheet that outlines the criteria:

  128. Steve Hickey

    And your citation of Fact Check is good to go though. I know what sources fly in academia, Mr Newquist.

  129. David Newquist

    Yes, it meets the criteria of integrity: “ is a nonprofit[2] project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, and is funded primarily by the Annenberg Foundation.[4] has won four Webby Awards in the Politics category, in 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012.[5]”

    Not infallible, but always striving for soundness and accuracy.

  130. mike from iowa

    and there are two groups of humans-those who stand with Obama saying the sun is hot and those wingnuts who automatically declare Obama is lying.

  131. mike from iowa

    Fox Noise makes stuff up.

  132. Steve Hickey

    MSNBC is just as unreliable as FOXNEWS. One sits on the left and squeezes their stories into their narrative and one sits on the left and squeezes their stories into their narrative. I watch and reply on neither.

    FACT CHECK FACT: Wallis Annenberg, president and CEO of the Annenberg Foundation, contributed $25,000 to the Democratic National Committee.

    It’s disputable if the Annenberg Foundation is a recipient of funnelled George Soros money. It certainly isn’t support by the Koch brothers. It would not be considered a reliable source here at the University of Aberdeen.

  133. Then what sources are left, Steve? Suppose we accord respect and dignity to all interlocutors’ claims here of bias in various sources. No Breitbart, no FactCheck, no FOX, no MSNBC (and let me remind everyone that I don’t watch MSNBC)—what’s left? To what segment of the mediasphere can conscientious discussants turn?

  134. Steve Hickey

    Alternative media. I don’t know. Remember back a half a dozen years ago or more when we were battling on the abortion issue. You’d cite Guttmacher Institute (“formerly” an official arm planned parenthood) as authoritative and I’d cite docs like Priscilla Coleman and you’d discount everything about her. Everyone has sources to support what they want to believe. I guess we need to look at the data on both sides and decide. On Climate Change they were fudging the data. Years ago the Tobacco industry fed us their junk science. Obama tells us guns are the problem, vilifies the NRA, all the while he arms ISIS on the side.

  135. Rev. Hickey offers false equivalency. MSNBC is not as unreliable as FOX news. Democrats in Congress are not equally to blame as Republicans for our government being incapable of passing meaningful legislation in a timely manner. Donald Trump and his supporters are prima facie evidence of the fact that much of the Republican Party is utterly divorced from reality, and from facts.

  136. The NRA was for instant background checks before the NRA was against them. The NRA was for gun training for 10 year old deer hunters before it was against it.

  137. Steve Sibson

    “I review the Newquist–Hickey dialogue and wonder how we bridge the gap between views that are kept separate by an infinite relativism and establish consensus on truth?”

    By considering the option that both could be wrong.

  138. Steve Hickey

    All you state is entirely opinion, Rorschach. Entirely. Harry Reid stopped everything from passing the Senate and Pelosi did so in the House.

    Regarding your NRA comment I saw this earlier today:

    Obama says out of one side of his mouth: We must pass a ban on “assault” weapons because Federal background checks simply don’t work.

    Out of the other side of his mouth he says: Don’t worry about 100,000 Muslims refugees. They are all getting Federal background checks.

    BTW, I challenged the NRA on the House floor a couple years ago with their Rep sitting in the balcony.

  139. bearcreekbat

    Pastor Hickey, this is my plea to you. You value human lives and have shown that by supporting the repeal of the death penalty.

    Please stop repeating Fiorna’s lie about Planned Parenthood killing live babies and selling their baby parts. This type of hate mongering has already agitated Robert Dear to kill several innocent people and has incited other violent reactions, such as arson, by some of your fellow Christians. And repeating Fiorna’s lies cannot be justified by asserting Hillary or anyone else lies.

    Killing, arson and property destruction cannot help your cause, it only results in hurting or killing innocent people. Please stop inciting your followers with fabricated stories that have caused and will cause more violent reactions. Please. Just. Stop.

  140. Did you challenge the NRA to a duel? Stace & Betty could have provided the weapons right then and there. That would have been interesting. Your comments … not so much.

  141. mike from iowa

    Wallis donated to both parties. Walter was a longtime wingnut supporter.

  142. Steve Hickey

    But they aren’t lies . Gosnell was a monster and PP dismembers living human beings everyday and, at least until recently, there was a market for body parts.

  143. Lanny V Stricherz

    Well, Reverend Hickey, I guess we could go back to the days of my generation when all abortions were done back alley, by butchers or by the woman herself with a coat hanger and the fetus dumped in a garbage bin, with no further use of the body or tissue. But of course no one believes that happened that often prior to Roe vs Wade or Planned Parenthood, but I can assure you that it did.

    Be against abortion, just like all the rest of us, but at the same time, find it in your heart to see the side of a woman who is trapped in a situation that is untenable, and has no options. Just because you don’t, doesn’t mean that God doesn’t.

  144. Steve Sibson

    “This type of hate mongering has already agitated Robert Dear to kill several innocent people and has incited other violent reactions, such as arson, by some of your fellow Christians.”
    “Please. Just. Stop.”

    True Christians do not advocate killing sinners. True Islamists do. So stop repeating lies.

  145. bearcreekbat

    Hickey, you are deflecting when you refuse to address Fiorna’s specific lie – that she saw a video of a live baby already out of the womb and on a table that Planned Parenthood doctors cut apart to harvest and sell the living baby’s body parts. That is a bald faced lie and you know it, and by propagating such a lie, you risk causing others like Dear to engage in violence.

    Unless you are good with inciting folks like Robert Dear to kill other human beings, please stop.

  146. Lanny V Stricherz

    Steve Sibson, you defeat your own logic.

  147. Daniel Buresh

    Mr Hickey, as a pretty diehard republican who has a degree in comp science and math, with a pretty intensive background in physics…..I can assure you that climate change is real and the Republican party is completely wrong on this topic.

    In regards to guns, the left have been very detrimental in the past. They have refused to compromise by claiming that if they do, future regulation will be lost. The NRA, along with republicans, looked to open the background check system to anyone selling a gun and Harry Reid and liberals wouldn’t allow it. Republicans and the NRA tried to open up doors so mental health records would be taken into account when checks happen…..Harry Reid and liberals wouldn’t allow it.

    2 things that could have helped but were not allowed because liberals led by Harry Reid would not bend, even though this would make private sales much safer and would open the door for requiring the check prior to sale since there would be no monetary fee like we have to pay if we go to a FFL. And for the record, the system only returns a yes, no, or a phone number to call for further questions. No personal information is released so the decision algorithm could be completely private to shield personal info from being accessed. Not allowing the gov’t to take into account mental health records while deciding on a gun sale makes no sense when these same people want our entire health records in the hands of the gov’t. If there is one thing our gov’t sucks at it is intra-departmental communication and the failure to not work together to reduce redundancy.

  148. Steve Hickey

    Please don’t link me to people who shoot up anywhere. I promise not to say your support of Gosnell and the practices of others like him creates the likes of Dear. Have you renounced Gosnell? Who am I to say Fionina say a video or didn’t? It is very believable to me that she did. I’m friends with South Dakotas last abortion doctors. She tells me what they did. It’s horrible.

  149. bearcreekbat

    Hickey, compare Fiorna’s lies to the maker of the video reluctantly admitting that the baby in the video was not a Planned Parenthood abortion video, but was a stillborn from a miscarriage. He then tried to justify using this video he found on the web to “illustrate” what happens to an aborted fetus, admitting that it was not a real video of anything that Planned Parenthood had done, contrary to Fiorna’s lie. And I know you don’t trust sources, but this is a video of the actual maker of the lie admitting the truth out of his own mouth.

    Back to the topic at hand – there is nothing “virtuous” about spreading lies and inciting dupes into committing violent attacks on innocent people. In most philosophies and even in many religions, the “ends” never justify using evil “means”. Dishonesty is dishonesty, no matter how you try to twist and turn. And dishonesty that leads others to violence is not a “virtue.”

  150. bearcreekbat

    Hickey, give me a break. Gosnell was not a Planned Parenthood doctor, he was a criminal that exploited the difficulty women in his area had finding a safe clinic to care for their medical needs.

    No one supports Gosnell’s criminal conduct, and such criminality was not the result of some political figure spreading lies about abortion or anything else.

    While I hope that you do not support Dear’s actions, there is direct evidence from his own mouth that he killed for “no more baby parts.” Where did he get such a notion? Well Fiorna sure seems a likely source since that parroted the words out of her mouth heard on TV by millions of people in the Presidential primary debate preceding the killings.

    Words matter. Truth matters. Please stop spreading a lie that has already led to murder, violence and arson.

  151. mike from iowa

    Two clinics handle or did handle body parts-one in California and one in Washington state. Why shoot up a clinic where this stuff did not happen? PP has not violated any laws-every god damn investigation by every god damn red state could find no violations anywhere. Did that change any minds? Hell no!!! You fauxknee kristians still want to kill to stop abortion and abortionists and Hickey’s lies only make it worse.

  152. mike from iowa

    Abortion is safe and legal. Murder by religious nut jobs is neither.

  153. Porter Lansing

    ~ A person who truly cares about truth doesn’t care if they win an argument. Their goal is to walk away from every discussion closer to the truth than they did when it began. This means that they begin by seeking to understand, not to explain.
    ~ An approach centered on seeking truth together often leads to the realisation that one doesn’t know as much as one thought, that one’s confidence was unwarranted. – Seb Pearce ~ “Truth, Virtue, and Creating Atheists”

  154. Steve Sibson

    “Abortion is safe and legal.”

    It is not safe for the baby, who has been denied due process.

  155. Porter Lansing

    You’re not a baby until you’re born. You’re not a corpse until you die. Cells grow and divide before life begins and cells grow and divide while you’re in the funeral home being processed for burial.

  156. Steve Sibson

    Porter, based on your logic, dead people’s bodies should be disposed of the same way aborted babies are?

  157. David Newquist

    There are rhetorical fallacies stated of the type we try to get freshmen students to recognize and eliminate.

    “FACT CHECK FACT: Wallis Annenberg, president and CEO of the Annenberg Foundation, contributed $25,000 to the Democratic National Committee.”
    The implication here is that because Wallis Annenberg contributed $25,000 to the DNC (when? over what period of time?) that an endowed program funded in an Ivy League university by a foundation he heads cannot be considered an academic program that follows the procedural rules for examining facts and analyzing their veracity. That is a huge error of consequential reasoning.

    “It [] would not be considered a reliable source here at the University of Aberdeen.”
    As noted, this is a program established under the auspices of an institution that has earned an academic reputation of the highest order. Why and how would a sister institution designate it as unreliable. That is a question that would best be referred to the academic senate at the University of Aberdeen. The faculty and administration at the University of Pennsylvania, I am certain, would like to know of any factors that mar its reputation and standing with colleagues at the University of Aberdeen. This is a question that needs to be pursued and answered.

  158. mike from iowa

    Wingnuts eat their own. Abortion is safe for the mother-the actual living,viable human in the equation. Nothing you say,Sibson,will ever change reality. Try reality some time.

  159. Porter Lansing

    Mr. Sibson … I believe they call you Sibby? Pleasure to make your acquaintance, sir. As to your question. People of your “capacity to learn and change” are almost always better served by searching out answers to your own inquests.

  160. (The meta-discourse has ditched its meta.)

  161. mike from iowa

    Wallis A-donated $25000 to the Dem Cong. Campaign Com.-2007
    donated $10000 to the DNC-2011
    donated $6100 to HRC-99-05
    donated $16000 to Obama-2011
    donated $2000 to GWB-2003
    donated $3350 to Idaho Rep party-2012
    donated $15000 to John Boner-2011
    donated $3550 to Mass. Rep State Cong Com-2012
    donated $1500 to Michael Huffington-93-94
    donated $55000 to Romney-2012
    donated $30800 to RNC-2012
    donated $3550 to Vermont Rep FEC-2012

  162. mike from iowa

    You spelled meat wrong,Master.

  163. Hilarious, Mike! But no, really, I meant the meaty matter of meta-discourse, discussion about discussion. I guess can keep the dogs in the philosophy pen only so long.

  164. mike from iowa

    If Latterell doesn’t think states will behead people,just wait until Sharia law takes over. It is coming according to “in the know” nutters.

  165. Sibby,

    The voters decided Mitchell will now have a new indoor pool built which will be great for ALL of the community. We need to keep moving Mitchell forward.

    Has Tara been un-banned also?

  166. David Newquist

    Mike from where I hold two degrees: Your research into Wallis’ history of donations is much appreciated and highly revelatory to this discussion.

  167. Bill Fleming

    Cory, “back in the day” when I was co-hosting the Decorum Forum blog with Bob Newland and Mike Sanborn, we used to take a stab at doing philosophical discussions along the lines of your fine presentation here. In fact, I believe the blog was founded on just such a premise: i.e. respectful, intelligent discourse. Suffice it to say it was a rough row to hoe, and you’ve succeeded far more handsomely on your experiment here than the three of us were able to there. Congrats on that, my friend.

  168. Steve Hickey

    Yes Cory, time to close comments. This discussion has descended into a citation of scurrility.

  169. Steve Hickey

    Just read this latest dig from mr two degrees Newquist: “we try to get freshmen students to recognize…”

    If that’s not pompous I’m not sure what is.

    Here’s what the professor has taught me in the last twenty four hours: He is not open to freedom or diversity of thought. He rests above the rest of us as he has learned all there is to learn. (Except humility.)

  170. Grab the mirror Mr. Hickey, that last paragraph fits you like a glove

  171. mike from iowa

    Wallis A is a She. Walter was her Father. Annenberg gave mucho dinero to PBS over the years. Sponsored lots of good programming on PBS back in the day.

  172. Steve Hickey

    Did you miss the part about me being the one belittled, Jerry? Did you miss the part earlier where I said Newquist can teach me something? This started because he posted (and left the comments open implying he wanted discussion) and I commented in a friendly way with other ideas to think about. My bad. His comment box is for kudos only.

  173. David Newquist

    And here is what we have learned from Mr. Hickey:

    Stating the most fundamental premise of education–trying to get students to recognize and eliminate errors in thought and expression–is unbearably pompous.

    Refuting falsehoods and sources of information that make assertions with no basis in fact, and rejecting statements that cannot demonstrate any integrity of fact is being closed to freedom of thought and diversity.

    And when all else fails, resort to the hominem.

    And never, ever read a basic textbook on rhetoric.

  174. mike from iowa

    Reverend,I learn something from or about everyone who posts on here. Much of this stuff contributes to a broader understanding of why and how people can look so much alike and be worlds apart in their thinking and beliefs. Different is good-to a point.

  175. David Newquist

    ad hominem, should be.

  176. Steve Hickey

    David – you were ad hominem right out of the box – knowing where I am and what I’m doing you jumped outing the ring jabbing with “scholar”, “bonhoeffer”, “two degrees”, “freshman”, etc.. You were refuting my assertions and sources and I responded in kind. It’s actually an art to communicate in speaking and writing. I’ve been doing it for years. Maybe get away from the academy and figure out how to communicate with the little people again. Merry Christmas.

  177. bearcreekbat

    It seemed to me that Hickey’s avoidance of the truth by attempting to get around Fiorina’s lies and the damage that such lies have caused fall squarely into the idea of truth and virtue that is the topic of this blog.

    From a philosophical viewpoint, it seems a bit over the top to label anyone “scurrilous” because they challenge someone’s incendiary false statements. Indeed, in any effort to have a discussion about morality, it seems pretty clear that using language that incites others to commit heinous crimes falls squarely within that topic.

  178. Steve Sibson

    Lynn, yes it was interested to witness 1,440 registered voters make 7,857 registered voters, plus any unregistered taxpayer, plus any outsider who shops in Mitchell, plus any visitor staying in a Mitchell motel to pay $7 million on their $8 million competition pool.

    How does that play against the Mosaic law on coveting, since we are trying to discuss virtue?

  179. Steve Hickey,

    “Maybe get away from the academy and figure out how to communicate with the little people again.”

    Dr. Newquist is and was before retirement one of the most respected and popular faculty members on Northern’s campus. Great sense of humor also. The little people loved him!

  180. Bill Fleming

    Hickey just doesn’t like having his ass handed to him. I can relate. I don’t either. ;-)

  181. larry kurtz

    Hickey hasn’t had his ass handed to him by anyone; his skepticism is completely within reason.

  182. larry kurtz

    Anyone who believes the federal government doesn’t lie to us is delusional.

  183. larry kurtz

    Ken Blanchard has said he believes David Newquist is a crackpot, Fleming. Pick a lane, little dood.

  184. bearcreekbat

    larry, when you use the term “the federal government” are you referencing every single elected official, or every single appointed official, or every single employee of the federal government, or all of the folks who vote in federal elections, or some other discrete group of individuals, or our actual Constitutional system that we purport to follow ?

    It has bothered me as I grew older that using the term “government” or “federal government” to describe an evil entity seems a bit over-inclusive when describing potentially legitimate fears of folks in power abusing that power. But, I doubt that we can accuse everyone involved in our government of such a nefarious motive, so it might help to be a bit more precise about who you think is lying to us.

  185. David Newquist

    I think the accusation was that I ingested crack and pot. Which is more productive than engaging in blogs.

  186. Mr. Sibby, congratulations on getting a new swimming pool. You should get the season pass because it is much cheaper than paying the daily entrance fee.

  187. larry kurtz

    bat, all we are is ducks in the wind. Professor Newquist: you are among the last hopes for Democrats in South Dakota and i applaud what you do. Why can’t we all just get along except for the stupid people?

  188. bearcreekbat

    I was unaware of the feud between Ken Blanchard and Professor Newquist, so I googled it. I was fascinated by a 2005 post by Blanchard that made fun of the idea that Republicans needed some sort of fuehrer to lead the party.

    Today, we have Donald Trump, who, according to polls, leads the Republican party, making fuehrer-like proposals reminiscent of the anti-Jewish arguments of the Third Reich, such as registering all Muslims, policing everywhere where Muslims congregate, and prohibiting Muslims from coming to the USA. It is quite interesting how history unfolds!

  189. larry kurtz

    i just wanted to have the 200th comment. carry on.

  190. larry kurtz

    dammit, bat; you beat me to it. there was a picture of blanchard in one of the papers the other day. he looks like hell.

  191. bearcreekbat

    Right larry, and can you next identify what you mean when you reference “the federal government?” I guess my need is to identify the specific individuals or groups that are responsible for such lies attributed to our “federal government.”

    Otherwise, how can I assess the validity of such a proposition? The “federal government” net is so wide that the actual liars will be able to hide behind such a wide net and point out that everyone involved in the “federal government” is not a liar.

  192. bearcreekbat

    larry, you deserve credit for number 200, and if I accidentally jumped in, it was not intentional. Your comments and ideas are always interesting and IMHO worth full consideration. If Cory awards a prize for number 200, I will withdraw my comment that got in the way – please delete it Cory!

  193. Bill Fleming

    Larry gets his ass handed to him so often lately he’s started to enjoy it. :-)

  194. larry kurtz

    bat, i’ve lost faith in representative democracy as it stands today. if money is speech i’ve got nothing to say. everything we know is tainted by our fears and the threat of annihilation. we have pooped in our own wells and it’s time to fear the reaper.

  195. mike from iowa

    Anyone catch Scalia’s latest attempt to become Extra Superior Grand Wizard of the KKK,today?

  196. bearcreekbat

    larry, so if I understand your argument, our problem is with our attempt to create a representative democracy with out federal Constitution. Fair enough. What do you suggest as an alternative (recalling Cory’s philosophical basis for this thread)?

  197. bearcreekbat

    mfi, unfortunately Scalia has devolved from a Constitutional thinker to a right wing tool. It is a sad development as, for a time, Scalia seemed intellectually honest and advanced positions that protected all our our rights. Today, his opinions seem more politically motivated than faithful to our Constitution.

  198. larry kurtz

    The federal government is lying to Steve Hickey’s people in that Common Core requirements are institutionalizing evolution rather than adaptation, that the right to certain medical procedures offend some people and that the so-called War on Terror is a lie.

  199. Bob Newland

    Hickey is slipperier than a crab rangoon turd. He pretends to be a christian who pretends to listen to and mull over arguments. Then he acts in controversion to the evidence to which he has been witness. His remarks about the cannabis oils presentation earlier are illustrative. The stuff he wanted to legalize would have been of value to no one; justice denied in the name of justice rendered. His claim to being a minister of the lord’s word is the most despicable kind of hypocrisy and cynicism. Next to Steve Hickey, I am a saint.

  200. larry kurtz

    We the people should help Steve Hickey’s people to outlaw capital punishment, release Leonard Peltier as an act of compassion, stop the parasites like Chuck Brennan and celebrate America’s differences.

  201. larry kurtz

    I am in Rapid City and am reminded why sacrifice zones are essential to the American Dream.

  202. The new mexico blog about hate. Bring that one back.

    Bob, thanks for the card.

  203. Steve Sibson

    “Today, his opinions seem more politically motivated than faithful to our Constitution.”

    That has been the case with the SCOTUS since FDR.

  204. Bill Fleming

    Just because Hickey supports some worthy causes doesn’t mean he can or did prevail in an rational debate with Dr. Newquist. To use a Newlandism, the good professor whipped Hickey like a rented mule. Problem was, in true stubborn mule-like fashion, the good Rev. dug in his hooves and refused to move, prompting David to unhitch the wagon and retire for supper, leaving Hicky to bray away into the sunset. He’s still at it.

  205. larry kurtz

    Just because Professor Newquist supports some worthy causes doesn’t mean he can or did prevail in an rational debate with Reverend Hickey. Namaste, Fleming.

  206. Bob Newland

    Kurtz. Spend a few hours in Hot Springs if you wanna. Call me.

  207. We would need someone to remove Lar’s head from Hickey’s ass and clean him up before breakfast.

  208. Bill Fleming

    namaste larry. Nice job imitating Trump. ;-)

  209. I haven’t heard the word “covet” since sibbster was banned. can’t say i’m looking forward to a new diet of it with every thread.

    i’m with newquist and wonder how hickey can say:

    Just become some Christians are jerks doesn’t mean Jesus was. And just because Islam is frightening, doesn’t mean Muslims are. @11:59 on 12.08

  210. larry kurtz

    sorry, bob. spent monday night in hot springs and will be warping through there tomorrow morning about 4:30. maybe next trip.

  211. Cory, here is one for you from France 24, a very respected site. We do not hear about what is even happening in our own country, good that we have them pesky media types.

    Some folks here in the United States really think that the republican leader for the presidents office is out of touch and certainly out of line.

  212. Roger Cornelius

    I didn’t even notice that Larry’s blogs were missing, when did that happen?

    Cory is under no obligation to support other blogs except his own, if people want their blogs supported by Cory they should pay for it.

  213. From meta-discourse to discourse to griping about editorial policy—I was going to delete those distractions, but given Roger’s comment, I’ll simply note that I find some headlines too offensive and irresponsible for my sidebar. I don’t want certain muck fouling my search engine profile.

  214. Nobody noticed, Mr. C, at least not consciously. Although now that I think back my mind is more relaxed not having the muck in my peripheral vision.

  215. someone else trolls with questionable “public” statements that test civil discourse. Scalia, catholic, lawyer; some say “bright”. He once said to a lawyer/congressman: “don’t forget you are from a conquered race”. ahaha…so bright, so funny, so….

    Until the statement became public.

    a blog post summarized:

    The Cherokee Trail of Tears where the 5 Tribes were forcibly removed from their lands by the colonists, was legalized around 1830, and the Chief justice, John Marshall, personally financially benefitted from legalizing the forced removal, by utilizing the lands the Indigenous were forcibly removed from. Fast forward to the 2002 Dick Cheney Secret Energy Task Force Meeting when Scalia himself voted to keep it a secret, shortly after spending 3 days hunting with Cheney. Our judges and Supreme Court justices have the ability to have conflict of interest and collusion relationships with the individuals and corporations they make legal rulings on. The Gulf of Mexico oil spill legal rulings in favor of the oil corporations, were done by a federal judge with investments in the oil companies implicated in the oil spill. The Appeals Court reaffirming his rulings was done by federal judges with professional, personal and investment relationships with the same companies


    scalia likes to go out, rub elbows, and is indignant to suggestion that he may not maintain impartiality. he doesn’t learn. yesterday he trolled the nation suggesting blacks can’t keep up in science or at UT. texas: big wuff. go to “lesser institutions” he suggests others have said.

    scalia: bigger wuff.

  216. mike from iowa

    So,after I retired for the evening this did turn into a meaty discourse. Who knew?

  217. mike from iowa

    More like a celestial meatier shower.

  218. Cory,

    “I’ll simply note that I find some headlines too offensive and irresponsible for my sidebar. I don’t want certain muck fouling my search engine profile.”

    Larry From New Mexico’s other blog on your side bar is not?

    Postings such as another blogger has cancer?

    US Representative Kristi Noem having an affair leaked by our SoS?

    US Senator Mike Rounds resigning?

    Those mentioned above are obviously unsubstantiated and are the less bizarre and offensive postings compared to others by that blogger that are on your sidebar.

  219. barry freed

    So you finally acknowledge the possibility of a Mussolini or Hitler taking over any country, including America. Who is paranoid now? I’m having knobby tires installed on my bicycle to defend me and mine.

    As far as not engaging in a discussion with the shooter in San Bernardino, you need to do better research and not once again accept blindly, the Official Line. That shooting was the result of religion based bullying in the workplace. It was ignored, or encouraged through inaction, by the Office Administration. Once again, the complicit media are willing to embrace the crazed killer line, as with Columbine, ignore the facts, and cover butts for the Officials’ misconduct and failures. This lie is not missed by the Muslim Community, you can bet on that. Obama, who was privy to the workplace argument but chose to ignore it in his speech, must be hoping for deadly confrontations between racists and Muslims so he can get his bans.

    With this lie, the far right gets immigration restrictions and the far left gets a gun ban. It’s only for No Fliers, but any ban is good. It’s a Win, Win.

    Enter: Donald Mussolini and his far right Congress to install their version of Democracy. We’re all: Fired! (or some other eff word)

  220. Lynn, we all reach our breaking points at different times. You might do better not to even mention those false headlines, lest they show up in more Google searches.

  221. Cory just pointing out the inconsistencies with your statements/policies in regards to that particular blogger/commenter.

  222. Barry—”finally” acknowledge? Did I at some point say that a fascist movement could not make headway in America? Please refresh me as to the exchange that apparently rankles you so I can respond clearly.

    Knobby tires have provided me far more daily utility than any firearm.

    Not engaging in discourse with shooters—at the moment someone aims a loaded gun, I am comfortable abandoning whatever rules of virtuous discourse may come from this discussion.

    As for prior to the shooting, yes, civil discourse can help stave off violence. The link you provide on the disagreement the shooter had with an apparently fervently anti-Islam, pro-Israel co-worker two weeks before the killings is very interesting.

    Is it bullying to say to another person, “I think your religion is wrong” (misunderstands God, has a false creation myth, incites violence, oppresses women)? Can one make and discuss such a claim with “respect, goodwill, and patience”?

    To be clear, Barry, even if there is a connection between the comments Nicholas Thalasinos made at work about Islam and the fact that he was murdered along with 13 co-workers, there is no scenario in which such statements, made civilly or not, justify a response involving an assault rifle. Even if Thalasinos was a hate-filled bigot, Farook only reinforced that bigotry and committed a worse transgression. As Pastor Hickey himself says, “You don’t disarm a demonic spirit with more bloodshed. That feeds it. You dislodge a demonic spirit by moving in the opposite spirit.”

  223. (We both have bigger fish to fry, Lynn.)

  224. Cory, Ah yes! Always the avoidance regarding this subject matter right?. lol

  225. Sure. Not interested. Neither I nor anyone else gains by grinding your axe.

  226. So you endorse the very offensive and highly inappropriate attacks by that blogger on your blog feed on for example SD State Hwy Trooper Bader and his family when he was doing his duty, was attacked and could of been killed?

  227. larry kurtz

    Okay, Cory I was wrong. Maybe it wasn’t such a silly post after all.

  228. No, Lynn is taking it there now. Tiresome… but I’ll say it: the presence of Larry’s incorrect statements in my sidebar does not signal my endorsement any more than the presence of Lynn’s incorrect statements in the comment section signals my endorsement.

  229. Cory,

    Fascinating. Your response to my questions regarding this particular matter says a great deal. It’s your blog and sidekick. Thank you for your clarification. :)

  230. mike from iowa

    What was the original post about again? Ah,I remember. It was to see if Lynn or Kurtz could piss the farthest. How did I forget that?

  231. Steve Hickey

    Here’s toward a little peace and harmony among us agitators here in the blog community:

  232. And there Lynn goes again, believing what she wants rather than seeking actual truth. I’ll just say it: Larry is not my sidekick any more than Ken Santema is. If you seek truth and respectful discussion, you respect my sincerity and drop that axe. If not, then there’s not much point in my saying things to you, since you will disregard my statements at your whim to suit your inexplicable axe-grinding.

  233. Bill Fleming

    Criteria I try to follow before hitting the “Post comment” button:

    1. Is it truthful?
    2. Is it necessary?
    3. Is it kind?

    Of the three, I’m finding #2 kills more of my rough draft comments than either of the other two…
    I can usually find a little wiggle room and poetic license in those. :-)

  234. Bill Fleming

    LOL, Hickey, the video says “The uploader has not made the video available in your country.” That’s the Scotts for ya. ;-)

  235. Steve Hickey

    Really? I can’t get the state website or LRC from here because apparently SD doesn’t want anyone over the pond snooping around.

    It was a youtube link to Steve Martin’s SNL Christmas Wish.

  236. Bill Fleming

    You mean this one, Pastor Steve?

  237. Steve Hickey

    Bill your criteria is good. When I was blogging a lot at the voicescarry site I had three similar questions 1) is it true 2) is it fair/kind 3) will it help? does it contribute anything worth saying? And I had a retraction and public apology practice as well. I used it four times, I think. Once I slammed Walter Panzerer on a stem cell thing and later met him and learned it hurt him and his family and that it was entirely untrue. So I publicly retracted – and I started to change my tone. Probably still have a long way to go. Walter is a friend today. I’d add a fifth question today: Is it my battle to fight? I have opinions about lots of things but I’m trying to only engage on a limited number of topics. I learned in Pierre if you open your mouth on every issue people roll their eyes after a while and when you finally do have something important to say nobody has ears to hear it.

  238. Bill Fleming

    (LOL, probably won’t play in Scotland)

  239. Bill Fleming

    Yup, good stuff. Merry Christmas, Reverend. Be safe.

  240. larry kurtz

    I like the flaming bag of dog intestines approach to bloggery.

  241. Steve Hickey

    It plays for me here. Odd.

    Every year my wife asks what I want for Christmas and I launch into that Steve Martin routine about all the children of the world…

    Seeing us fight on here these last few days made me think of it.

  242. bearcreekbat

    Bill, your criteria #1 and #3 seem straightforward, but on #2, how do you decide that any comment is “necessary?”

  243. Bill Fleming

    BCB, exactly! Hickey’s notes at 14:21 help unpack it a little when he says, “will it help? does it contribute anything worth saying?” and later, “Is it my battle to fight?”

    Other times it’s more of a personal aesthetic thing like “will it be funny and entertain people” or “is it kind of creative and worth sharing?” In those cases, I suppose it’s a contribution to the general atmosphere/ambience of the blog environment.

    I think Cory wants people to feel comfortable here. I know I did, when I was helping with Decorum Forum hosting. So I try to demonstrate that it’s a safe place, even when it feels unsafe sometimes. I hear a lot of people saying they read here but are afraid to write because they don’t want to get put through the meat grinder.

    And with that I have once again brought myself to the edge where I have to decide if this long response to you is really necessary. Even so, I’ll post it this time strictly for demonstration purposes. :-)

  244. bearcreekbat

    Bill, using criteria like whether the comment adds to the discussion, or has value, or is entertaining, makes sense.

    A factor I consider is that, as you observed, there are many people who read Cory’s blog threads but seldom, if ever, comment. When someone posts a comment with a false statement or a statement that has the potential to harm others, I feel it important to correct the statement or at least point out the damage that might be caused by publishing the statement.

    The best result would be to open the eyes of the poster, but even if I am not able to change the mind of the person making the false or damaging statement, I can let know readers that there is another viewpoint that might be factually accurate and less harmful.

    As an example, that is the reason I called out Reverend Hickey on his support for Fiorina’s false baby parts claim. If someone with Robert Dear’s twisted mindset actually reads some evidence that Fiorina was lying, it is my hope that he would be less likely to be incited to violence by incendiary falsehoods.

  245. Bill Fleming

    Yes, BCB, you are especially diligent about that, I’ve noticed.

    It’s a practice recommended George Lakoff’s book, “Don’t Think of an Elephant” and in fact the reason I first started commenting on blogs at my friend Bill Harlan’s request back in the old “Mt. Blogmore*” days.

    There’s a lot of bad information going around, which, if left unchallenged, can and does do damage to the social fabric.

    Like you say, we can’t always persuade those who post the questionable material to see things differently, but we can sometimes provide alternative ways of framing the information for those readers who genuinely interested in learning more about the topic.

    I think blogs are better when that happens, instead of just becoming echo chambers of propagandistic talking points, and related mud-slinging/insult contest corollaries.

    *…of course, as you’ll recall, sometimes small subgroups will get sidetracked and take a given topic into realms none of us (including the Blogmasters) ever thought it would go.

    That one post on Stem Cells with over 600 comments came about pretty much for the sheer joy of some of us armchair philosophers finding one another and probing the ethical, moral and spiritual depths together. Ah, nostalgia. Too bad that thread is lost to history (boo on the RCJ). I’d like to try to read it through again someday. I think there were about 5 people heavily involved in that exchange, and it went on for weeks, if not months.

  246. bearcreekbat

    That was one of my favorite blog interactions. I recall little or no hostility. Instead we had a long and enjoyable philosophical and theological discussion about complex issues. I recall that we actually resolved virtually all issues, but the resolutions are now lost due to the deletion of the thread by the journal. Oh well, that means that future philosophers will have to rediscover our brilliant solutions. Namaste my friend!

  247. Bill Fleming

    Namaste, indeed, Bat.

  248. Don Coyote

    “Anyone catch Scalia’s latest attempt to become Extra Superior Grand Wizard of the KKK,today?”

    @mia: If you’re referring to Scalia’s questioning in the case of Fisher v Texas, you’re mischaracterizing Scalia’s position. I find it more than ironic that in a post by Cory discussing the Socratic Method (albeit rather dismally characterized by the response so far) that you obviously fail (as do many in the media) to see that that was exactly what the old law professor was doing.

    First some context. Referencing an amicus brief filed by UCLA law professor Richard Sander and his “mismatch theory” (which claims that students admitted to a school that they are not academically prepared for then they are being set up for failure), Scalia questions the U of T lawyer:

    “There are those (Taylor/Sanders) who contend that it does not benefit African-Americans to get them into the University of Texas where they do not do well, as opposed to having them go to a less-advanced school, a less — a slower-track school where they do well. One of the briefs (Taylor/Sanders) pointed out that most of the black scientists in this country don’t come from schools like the University of Texas.” Continuing Scalia asks “They come from lesser schools where they do not feel that they’re being pushed ahead in classes that are too fast for them. I’m just not impressed by the fact that the University of Texas may have fewer. Maybe it ought to have fewer. And maybe some — you know, when you take more, the number of blacks, really competent blacks, admitted to lesser schools, turns out to be less.”

    While there is no doubt that Scalia falls squarely within the camp disagreeing with affirmative action, his attempts to tease out a deeper argument from one of the sides hardly qualifies him as an “Extra Superior Grand Wizard of the KKK” or as a racist. But I will give you points for playing the race card. Here’s a good article at The Atlantic that explains the theory well.

  249. It took awhile, but I think the meta – and some meat – has returned.

  250. barry freed

    Yes you have, many time you have said the people who arm themselves in fear of a fascist takeover are paranoid.
    You find knobby tires more useful as you leach your safety from gun owners. Ride the bike path in Memorial Park after dark.

    The link is interesting? The racist rants were the cause.

    What the racist was say was much more than “I think your religion is wrong”.

    How did I know you would go for the cheap accusation that faulting the racist is condoning murder?
    I said nothing of the sort, and didn’t make that disclaimer on purpose. I think for civilized people (and polite people) that goes without saying.

  251. Ah, I see the source and direction of the comment!

    I leach no safety from gun owners. I do not sit here thinking, “Oh, if the brownshirts come marching down the street, my armed neighbors will keep me safe.” Far from it. I’m convinced the fascist takeover won’t look like that any more than it did in Germany. The fascist takeover would happen because we lose faith in our principles and vote in fear for tyrants like Trump who offer false promises of security and manliness. Bang-bangs in the closet won’t stop the corporate interests from simply hitting “Delete” on our credit reports and bank accounts.

    The threat is real; the armed response is misdirected fantasy. The fascists among us would like for everyone to get distracted and buy lots of guns instead of actively participating in the political system. Guns won’t save us. Committed participation in the democratic process and civil discourse will.

    “cheap accusation”? No, I make a logical statement based on a hypothetical. I don’t think there’s any level of rabid verbal bigotry that justifies an armed response. But lest I be accused of saying anything else that I didn’t say, Barry, tell me what the point is in pointing out Thalasinos’s bigotry. Are you trying to say there should be some speech code at work, some safe zone for people of different religious faiths?

  252. David Newquist

    bearcreekbat @ 2015-12-10 at 17:34,

    Fiorina and Chris Cuomo had this exchange this morning:

  253. Steve Hickey

    Based on that clip
    Carly Fionina 1
    Chris Cuomo 0

  254. Don Coyote

    Cuomo must still be torqued on being passed over at GMA for co-host duties. Chris comes perilously close to accusing Fiorina of inciting violence with his use of the word “influence”. Of Cuomo, who is a lawyer masquerading as a news anchor, once tried to claim that hate speech isn’t a protected form of speech under our Constitution. I’m glad to see Cuomo can still carry all that water for the liberal agenda.

  255. larry kurtz

    Carly Fiorina is a sleeper cell unto herself.

  256. Truthful, necessary, and kind—I can respect that set of criteria. However, in my practice, #1 and #2 together will usually overrule #3. How’s your calculus on those three, Steve and Bill?

  257. Note how much Don Coyote’s comments depend on attacking Cuomo’s personal characteristics rather than focusing on the questions of fact at hand. Don Coyote appears to have missed most of the original point of the post.

  258. Cory –
    Lots o’ luck keeping the commentary on point.

  259. bearcreekbat

    David, Thanks for the link. Fiorina’s rambling responses in which she tried to avoid dealing with the harm caused by her false statements suggests she took her public speaking training from Sarah Palin. Her unwillingness to deal directly with the harm her false statements caused reminded me of Hickey’s school-yard arguments that tried to continually change the subject, or justify lies because others lie, or justify improper comments because others make improper comments.

    It was particularly telling that Fiorina again bore false witness against PP by asserting that the videos had not been edited with the unrelated miscarriage video, even after the maker of the video admitted that it was edited with this unrelated video clip, as shown in the link I provided earlier. So much for Exodus 20:16.

  260. larry kurtz

    i can’t find the quote now but an editor at the New York Daily News said something like “be anything but boring.”

  261. Excellent post and particularly thought provoking. As a Christian I always feel that too many Christians and atheists are more interested in winning an argument. As a Christian my goal is always to plant a seed of doubt while also listening to the arguments. Faith is not logical and it defies “logic” that people have chosen to die horrific deaths rather than renounce their faith.

    When a person is comfortable in his or her position, you can be passionate about it and still walk away secure in your faith (or position). It is important and right to question things and Plato’s “Apology” displays the best use of questioning. If Socrates was arguing that he was not corrupting youth and taking a hard-line stance it would have been like many blog comments from our age. Instead he took a different approach. He used the idea that he did not know anything with certainty.

    The balance of the two—provoking debate and discussion, and moderating one’s position is critical for excellent discourse.

    Without reading the original source material mentioned, I think it is ironic that Socrates argued for death rather than banishment. He knew what banishment meant, but he did not know what death meant. He felt that he could be given the greatest gift through death.

    On a lighter note, in a quote from a movie that references Socrates—potentially his last words…”I drank what?!?”

  262. Ron, that’s an interesting observation about Socrates’ taking death rather than banishment because death constituted a “gift” of knowledge that he did not have and couldn’t not obtain any other way. And I certainly can sympathize with a guy who would recognize exile from his polis as a terrible, devastating punishment.

    But we all eventually get that “gift” eventually; why hasten it? Did choosing death serve a greater good?

  263. I think it showed his true character as a student of learning. He had to argue for death instead of banishment—but did it in a manner as a student of life. He contended that he did no wrong and that he should not receive any punishment—and death might not be punishment. He also noted that he could not “quietly mind his own business” as he was passionate about learning.

    He went on to say, “If on the other hand I tell you that to let no day pass without discussing goodness and all the other subjects about which you hear me talking and examining both myself and others is really the very best thing that a man can do, and that life without this sort of examination is not worth living, you will be even less inclined to believe me.”

  264. larry kurtz

    Cory, you would simply delete the hail of obscenities that Ron Sasso deserves from me and from other freedom-loving native South Dakotans. Jerry Wright for Mayor!

  265. larry kurtz

    Hey, Sasso: using your real name go over to DWC and lay that schtick on Pat who has slathered a decade of filth on South Dakota’s democratic process.

  266. Interesting thoughts, Ron. It seems to me you are confusing politics with my thoughts on what would Jesus do.

    How about sowing seeds of hope as we lead by example.

    Over here at the Free Press, not so much. Politics is a mix of sowing doubt and hope. Btw, the Free Press isn’t free to produce. How about we throw a little Christmas generosity Cory’s way.

  267. Larry and Les, I think you may have confused my thoughts about Socrates about something else…

  268. J Wright for what? Seriously?

  269. I don’t like it when I’m confused, Ron.

    Ron@” As a Christian my goal is always to plant a seed of doubt while also listening to the arguments. ” A christian sewing doubt, Ron or a Christian sewing hope? Belief/faith/hope?

    Your words not mine. In political debate, yes, mix it up.

  270. Les, Thank you for clearing that confusion up—sorry I missed it previously.

    I am a Christian sewing hope and faith, but also trying to plant seeds of doubt in the mind of an atheist. I listen to discourse but I feel confident in my faith. I don’t believe it serves much purpose for anyone to push their faith onto a nonbeliever, as that person is more likely to move further away from what I would see as hope and faith in God. I feel a gentle approach works better in that regard. Hopefully that makes some more sense. Thanks!

  271. Keep your sewing needles away, Ron. ;-)

    My garden is already well-sown with doubt—how do you think I got where I am?

    Ron touches on an issue that struck me hard early in my philosophical pursuits: not every dispute (not to mention every fallible disputer) is open to persuasion. Sasso says he’s not trying to engage in that persuasion directly. Compare Sasso to Boghossian (ah! the original topic again!), who tries to prepare ground for civil discourse by encouraging critical thinking.

  272. Cory, I get your “point”. :)

  273. larry kurtz

    GenXers will be the death of us all.