An Open Letter to Amanda Marcotte -Towards rising above our own pettiness in the debate on Truth.


The ascent of the happy human [© 2015 Atani Studios]

The ascent of the happy human                                                                          [© 2015 Atani Studios]

 An old acquaintance of mine, a close friend in fact of one of my oldest friends, and someone I still have occasion to converse with in the digisphere, posted a preformatted piece of propaganda on the social media from fellow blogger Amanda Marcotte.

Atheists are routinely asked how people will know not to rape and murder without religion telling them not to do it … When you use this argument, you terrify atheists. We hear you saying that the only thing standing between you and Ted Bundy is a flimsy belief in a supernatural being made up by pre-literated people trying to figure out where the rain came from. This is not very reassuring if you’re trying to argue from a position of moral superiority.” ~ Amanda Marcotte

I’m not going to tell you what I think of Ms. Marcotte, lest you think I am resorting to an ad hominem attack on her but I will tell you what I think of what she wrote.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Giving and Volunteerism, Charity or an Expensive form of Entertainment? – Law of Reciprocity in action in the Blogosphere


Maimonides  -public domain

Maimonides                                                                                                   -public domain

One of the joys of blogging, a rare joy around here, is receiving the accolades of ‘likes’ and ‘follows’ from your readers, the problem comes when a ‘like’ or a ‘follow’ seems to come from someone who might be either a sincere and interested reader or someone phishing for recruits into a multi-level marketing scheme – hard to tell which sometimes – we seem to have had both types today.  In particular we had that situation come up this morning over at the other blog.

It is considered good blog etiquette to stop by and visit the blog of someone new who has decided to undertake the formality of voluntarily subscribing to be pestered electronically by your blog – the Law of Reciprocity in practice.  There’s a URL for that now, who knew?   I followed the follower’s profile back to the KarenEllisBlog to see who my visitor was, find out what they are up to and see if they have anything interesting to say.  When I got there I found a great deal of information hidden by hind menu tabs about:  how to “Explode your blog with income”, her business, and all about her.  Fine, but I’m not interested in signing up for any newsletters.  I also found her, then, most recent blog article: Tipping Servers $200, Wouldn’t that feel great to do?.  Sounds interesting.

Continue reading

The Rosenstrasse Protests-Towards a New Theory of German Resistance, and Why We Should Care


Rosenstraße Berlin

Rosenstraße Berlin today - source Wikimedia

The Rosentrasse Protests

I concluded my previous post The White Rose of Munich with:

For all the world’s peoples, not just the German people, the Nazi state, the Holocaust, represents an important lesson to be learned about being human and how we as peoples have to learn how to deal with events of such enormous terribleness as the Holocaust or other genocides.  The example of the White Rose of Munich help us all see how it is possible.

Well, this is the thesis I have been working on since 2006, the German people working through their collective guilt and collective shame as time passes, new scholarship emerges and new art is produced.  Why should we begrudge the German people a few generations to work through one of the darkest chapters in human history when in America, a hundred and fifty years after the fact, we are still trying to figure out what happened to us as a people with the issue of slavery and our own little Civil War.

Then I watched the movie Rosenstraße and I was sent back to the drawing board.

So far so good – I have developed the thesis that The White Rose as a resistance movement, and so poignantly symbolized by the martyrdom of Sophie Scholl, was fundamentally a failure in its own time, but gained its true significance only in the post-war years, initially in Germany and for the Germans, and more recently in the rest of the world, and with profound implications for the evolution of human society.

I will now attempt to extend my line of thinking, though I must point out this is merely a first pass with this new version of the thesis.  Again, this discussion is not meant to be a movie review, nor is it strictly a scholarly discussion of the history.  This discussion deals with the notion that the movie, which while inspirational to my thinking, isn’t the history, but is a mirror of the development of modern German attitudes about their history.

Continue reading