Tuesday, August 28, 2007

It's all about stacking the deck

You can't hide from God. That's what they say in the Bible. If God exists then God sees everything and knows everything. We humans lack that perspective. It isn't possible for anyone of us to see everything and know everything. But that doesn't stop us from feeling certain that what we know is true. Indeed, if we didn't feel that way we would never commit ourselves to anything.

In order to engage in an argument I have to respect my opponent. I have to be willing to listen to their side in order to answer or question their claims. But by participating in an argument I am taking the risk that I could be shown to be wrong. It's only by risking being wrong that we can be open to discovering the truth. Unless each party to an argument is willing to be convinced by the other it's just people talking past each other or one person attempting to bully another.

Recent history is full of examples of people who believed that they, like God, couldn't possibly be wrong. When these people gained power they always destroy Open Society. Communism and fascism were political systems that imposed their perspective on everyone by force. The communists believed that they had a monopoly on truth and so they forbade political and moral dissent. They knew they were right and they refused to risk being wrong. Every professional and every “elected” representative had to be a member of the communist party. The representatives didn't debate the proposals of the communist leaders, they simply rubber stamped them. The legal system always ruled in favour of the communist state because it was always right.

Nowadays communism and fascism are spent forces that have lost all credibility so they are no longer such a danger to Open Society. People who now take the “God's eye” perspective are called Fundamentalists. And like the communists and fascists, they try to stack the deck in their favour whenever they gain power. I agree with George Soros that there are two kinds of modern fundamentalists. Religious fundamentalists and Market Fundamentalists. Most people believe that they themselves are right but what distinguishes Fundamentalists is their refusal to risk being wrong in a fair argument.

For instance, there is no evidence that would convince a Christian Fundamentalist of the truth of Darwin's Theory of Evolution. Fundamentalists pretend to engage in argument with evolutionary biologists but behind the scenes they try to stack the deck by taking over school boards, by getting states to ban the teaching of evolution and by intimidating publishers from including the subject of evolution in high school biology textbooks.

Market Fundamentalists believe that free markets are always more beneficial than government regulated markets. Like Christian Fundamentalists there is no evidence that would ever convince them that they are wrong. Not the rising income gap between the rich and poor, not the demise of the middle class, not the “dirty thirties”, not the recent sub-prime mortgage meltdown, and not the spectre of global warming. In fact, a good portion of U.S. Republicans still believe that global warming is a hoax.

The Republican party under the guidance of Karl Rove has gone farthest in bringing the two kinds of fundamentalists together as the "base" for their electoral campaigns. Rove's signature is the anonymous smearing of the opponents and critics of the Bush administration. The swift-boat ads that slandered John Kerry in 2004, the whisper campaign against John McCain in the 2000 Republican primaries, and the outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame in order to get back at her husband for publicly casting doubt on Bush's WMD justification for invading Iraq - these are all associated with Karl Rove.

Rove is widely suspected of orchestrating the systematic harassment and suppression of minority voters that helped decide the election and re-election of George W. Bush. Then there is the firing of six federal prosecutors who refused to aggressively pursue dubious cases of voter fraud during the 2004 campaign. And the recent suppression and distortion of scientific evidence of global warming by the Bush administration. They all lead back to Rove.

It is no coincidence that Karl Rove identifies the Republican party with the two kinds of fundamentalism: market and religious. He and his boss, George W. Bush believe that they, like God, are always right.That's why they refuse to accept the risk of being wrong - the risk of losing a fair argument or a fair election. Like the fascists and communists of yesterday, they are doing everything in their power to stack the deck in their favour.


  1. The stacked deck is precariously close to toppling over as our society continues to fall away from God's laws. In our school system the distribution of Bibles has largely been banned as has the teaching of Christian principles. However, discussion of buddism and other religions as well as gay rights is condoned but respect for teachers is at an all time low.
    A recent pole found that 86% of Americans say they believe in God and "In God we Trust". Yet it seems, based on the news, like most of our society is following the 14% who do not believe in God!

  2. Thanks for your comment David. Laws are human made and are therefore always subject to error. Yet there was no time in history when this was not so. There is no perfect law in existence that we could fall away from.

    The reason that Christianity ought not to have a monopoly in the school system is because we are a diverse society and people are members of diverse religions.

    If people refuse to take the risk of being shown wrong then it is impossible to carry on a dialogue with them. There are at least two sides to every issue. If you've already decided that you cannot possibly be wrong then instead of dialogue you get one group forcing its views on everyone else.

  3. You have read alot of the Bible and other Christian literature, Charles. You have written sermons based on the Bible. You have tremendous knowledge of a great variety of subjects.
    I pray that God will open your heart to follow Him because I want to see you in heaven my good friend.

  4. EJ, the promise is summed up in Matthew 24: except for the sake of the elect, all flesh would be wiped from the face of the earth, and for our sake the Eagles gather, and captains surrender. Skidegate Potlatch: Family, clan and Tribe; Kitksun, Kitanmaax, and Kgelatl'; there is a little boy living on Haida Gwaii, we call him ... 'doo'otz' and ... will enjoy what we knew at ...'s age, because of Potlatch. The deck is stacked against the City, as well it must be, and in favour of the Village, the Villagers, and the Victorious.

    Gerald Schroeder, the Science of God, [Prince Rupert Library has it] caps off your lucid essay on the merger of Religion and Science, while Peter Plicht, Explains how 'numbers' form the elements, and how the Solar system is designed to function as 24-hours and 360-degrees, producing Saint John's cross by connecting the prime numbers on the clock and extending them to Infinity, while terminating the ordinary numbers, of which 6, 6, and 6, are special because they form the directions of space around the center; numbers form reality and they define it. This is all good. Science and Religion deal with that which causes fear, and as ecology asserts the power pent up by the abuses of the Industrial age, we witness the Infinite beauty of justice. Potlatch conquers the Church, taking Global Sovereignty with the victory.

    We are in the eclipse of culture. Potlatch opens the Hearth of people's global lives and provides the Word needed to close the Church, for it has to close. The Ovoid triumphs again.



  5. CJ, sorry mispelled Plichta, his book is The Prime Number Cross, and Revelation 5 is describing the cross in the 24-Elders, the 4-beasts, and the throne in the center. 24-hours are days and each day ticks once, around the four directions, within Infinity. Infinity is a mathematical certainty proved by the uncertainty of Human Reality. Study it. No form, no boundary in the macro or the micro, yet divide zero by one or one by zero and you describe an analogy of the Infinite. It all comes to Mind, and our minds make it certain that Mind is Infinite, therefore I/We create ourselves in the one way that we would allow ourselves to create and be created.

    Check The Ubiquitous Ovoid, the same on the Totems, and how? The ovoid is the clearest phone call from ourselves to ourself, being a form that cannot be, without the concept of beauty.

    the final author I recommend is Ken Wilbur, Integral Religion, in Sex, Ecology and Spirituality.

    Write on ...