Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Liberalism is killing the Western world, whimper by whimper

Melanie Philips makes a point:

"Liberalism is thus a utopian project. But, like all utopias, it is impossible to achieve. And so, having now realised this, the west is simply giving up on liberalism, resorting instead to deeply illiberal, pessimistic doctrines which are hostile to freedom, progress and humanity itself.

Doctrines such as environmentalism, which holds that the planet would be hunky-dory if it wasn’t for scientific progress and the human race itself; moral and cultural relativism, which elevates the self-centred individual into an unchallengeable authority and to hell with everyone else; child-centred education, which confirms children in their own ignorance and traps them in permanent disadvantage by insisting that adults take a back seat while children learn merely what is ‘relevant’ to their own lives.
And drug abuse, too, falls squarely into this category. The Peter Hitchens view, that drug abuse is an absolute evil which must be eradicated, is scorned in favour of ‘harm reduction’ which accepts that harm from drugs will always be done. But here’s the thing. The former view, vilified as reactionary and bonkers, is actually based on the progressive belief that the world can be made a better place. It is the latter view, the orthodoxy amongst ‘liberals’, which is in fact deeply reactionary because it institutionalises harm to the most vulnerable.
The supposedly ‘progressive’ view on drug abuse is thus nothing less than a repudiation of liberalism. And since liberalism is based on reason, that is why so-called ‘liberals’ have substituted vilification for rational argument, not just on drug abuse but on a host of other issues where ideology and wishful thinking now trump evidence.
In other words, the west has quite simply lost its own rational and progressive plot. Which is why, from beyond its shores, the world of true obscurantism is now so terrifyingly moving in for the kill."

Her whole post is here.

Part of ADU's crusade is to ask Western Anglicans whether we can afford our dalliance with the Western liberal project. If that project is destroying the world we know, the church cannot escape the consequences for its own future.

ACTUALLY HERE is the original vid exchange


Kurt said...

Yes, Ms. Philips has a point; if she were to wear a hat, it wouldn't show so much.

Kurt Hill
Brooklyn, NY

Father Ron Smith said...

A quote from today's 'Daily Word"-

"Living in the past is like having a boat stuck in a swamp while its destiny is to sail the open seas. I may have been stuck in stagnant waters as part of my human experience, but now I am ready to let go of my struggle and create a joyful life.

As I let go of old habits, I open myself to new possibilities. I understand that I don't have to personally control everything for life to work out. I release old ways of trying to force outcomes as I surrender the helm to my Higher Consciousness.

As I set sail with the Divine, I welcome new insights and surrender to the good that awaits me. I trust the process of life, daring to leave behind the safe harbour of old ways. With Divine Power at my back, I guide my ship to the open sea of my new life!"

I submit that this is not a bad outlook - especially for a well-known evangelical source of Bible-centred wisdom. Totally positive, as compared with Melanie Philips' (and others')endemic despair.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not upon your own understanding!" - not bad, eh?

Chris Nimmo said...

Hmm? Is the former view necessarily considered "reactionary and bonkers" because of ideology, or because it appears to have been colossally ineffective at eradicating drug abuse and colossally effective at "institutionali[sing] harm to the most vulnerable" (by, you know, putting them in prison, that kind of thing). Meanwhile, most "harm reduction" strategies have an overall aim, of, you know, eradicating drug* abuse**.

* drug being a contentious term in itself
** abuse a opposed to use being another contentious term

I can sympathise with the point in general terms, but not necessarily on this specific issue.

Anonymous said...

There is a radical difference, ignored by Ron, between trusting in God, and trusting in the world.

There is also a radical difference between trusting in God, and ignoring evil. Pretending that evil political and social policies do not exist, and are not corrupting the world and our society, is not trusting in God, it's burying ones head in the sand.

Let's take an obvious but instructive example. For several years prior to WW2 and the Holocaust, a number of voices, including Churchill, were trying to warn the world about the rise of Nazism and what it might lead to. Those voices were often described as "alarmist" and "scaremongering".

But what if the world had listened? Might the Holocaust have been avoided if more people had been prepared to listen, to name evil, and to oppose it?

Let's take another example, the Prophets. According to Ron's apparent definition, the Prophets were alarmists who did not trust in God because they were always warning Israel about the dangers of national decline, false and foreign gods and idolatry, and they used horrific imagery to describe where that would lead.

True Biblical trust in God does not ignore evil, stick it's head in the sand, and claim that everything is just fine.

Nor does it use "trust in God" to cover up and hide the evils of Liberalism, or any other dangerous notion.

We need more Prophets like Melanie Phillips, and less people using trust in God as a cover for importing into our society and the Church, foreign and dangerous political idols.

Anonymous said...

What we can learn from The Hobbit about true leadership.

""Meanwhile those Guardians of Middle Earth, modeled on Plato's philosopher kings, have their eyes focused on the future. A RadTrad can't help but gush. This is what our rulers should be. Damn the liberal democratic world! The events surrounding Erebor, the dwarves, and the dragon are one thing; a current event, possibly even a distraction. But the Guardians are on the hunt for occult forces growing in the shadows. They know this is their role. And they know how to sniff out trouble before orcs are playing the knockout game on the streets of Osgiliath." --- John Maelstrom

Andrei said...

Lol Fr Ron when you set sail for the open seas you do so with a compass to guide you on your way

Liberalism has thrown the compass away, or at best re-calibrates it to suit the prevailing winds of fickle fashion.

The writing is on the wall for the West and has been for some time

Anonymous said...

Speaking of false idols, the above quote from Ron comes from Unity, a New Age organization that teaches pantheism and reincarnation. Nothing Biblical about it.

Anonymous said...

Are these examples of negativity, endemic despair, or failing to trust in God?

Now admittedly they are not quotes from quite so respectable a source as the New Age cult called Unity, but call me old fashioned.

"His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor, gathering his wheat into the barn and burning up the chaff with unquenchable fire." - John the Baptist.

"If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell." - Jesus

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it." - Jesus

"be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell." - Jesus

"And if a town refuses to welcome you, shake its dust from your feet as you leave to show that you have abandoned those people to their fate." - Jesus

"And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately. Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this is only the first of the birth pains, with more to come. Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers. And many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other. And many false prophets will appear and will deceive many people. Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold." - Jesus

Wow, Jesus really wasn't trusting in "Divine Higher Consciousness" in that last one! Perhaps he needed a few lessons in positive thinking from Oprah.

carl jacobs said...


Ms Philips has a point; if she were to wear a hat, it wouldn't show so much.

Just curious. Did you intend to be ironic or did you just not realize you were confirming her major point?


Anonymous said...

Peter Hitchens was on vintage form again, while the actor guy looked spaced out. I did begin to wonder whether his years of alcoholism and drug taking had affected his brain. It was good to have the link as well to the psychiatrist Theodore Dalrymple's dose of cold realism, where he mocks the idea that alcoholism or the powerful desire for other forms of intoxication are an organic disease like pleurisy. What a strange morphing thing the concept of 'disease' is...

Martin (a doctor, but not one who can help you :) )

Kurt said...

“Just curious. Did you intend to be ironic or did you just not realize you were confirming her major point?”—carl

I take it that folks Down Under have never heard of the term “pinhead”? I thought you folks were up on all Americanisms…

Kurt Hill
Brooklyn, NY

Anonymous said...

Oh Kurt, and there was me thinking you were calling Melanie Phillips a pointy-head (i.e. intellectual), though not a pointy head liberal.
Well, I'm sure she would accept your kind if unintended compliment. She is at any rate a pundit, having written a number of books of social commentary on nursing and education, and has moved from being a left-liberal agnostic Guardianista Jew to (gasp!) a conservative Zionist commentator with at least an understanding of and sympathy for Christianity.
Hell hath no fury like a liberal spurned.

Father Ron Smith said...

"The writing is on the wall for the West and has been for some time"

Well, Andrei, I believe R. Branson is taking bookings for his very first space-flight. Would you like to get yours and 'Flee the wrath to come'. I can't see you sticking around for the Western Armageddon.

MichaelA said...

"I take it that folks Down Under have never heard of the term “pinhead”? I thought you folks were up on all Americanisms…"

Hi Kurt, I believe the person to whom you are responding is as American as you are. You might want to re-think this... :)

MichaelA said...

"Part of ADU's crusade is to ask Western Anglicans whether we can afford our dalliance with the Western liberal project."

Does it matter? Western Anglicans are only a small fraction of Anglicans worldwide. And many of them consciously reject liberalism anyway. So its only a quite small group that have any such dalliance.

I suppose in one sense the answer to my first question is, "Of course it matters - to western Anglicans", which is true enough. But on another level, if all western Anglicans disappeared overnight, the rest of the Anglican world would continue on, and probably not notice all that much.

Anonymous said...

When some "Christian" Liberals have no rational, moral or theological response, they always resort to personal abuse and name calling. I guess some of them think Christ's command to treat other as you want to be treated does not apply to them. "I'll treat others with love and respect only if they agree with my liberalism" is to reject love and respect totally, and to cease having a claim to be a disciple of Jesus.

Or perhaps the Golden Rule is just one of those mythical parts of Scripture?

Andrei said...

I can't see you sticking around for the Western Armageddon.

I'm mortal Fr Ron, how far the West will further degenerate before I face my judgment is in hands other than mine.

But I do note that while Richard Branson may indeed be taking bookings for sub orbital space flights at some indeterminate time in the future back on planet Earth in 2013 Western Astronauts who venture into space begin their journey with an Aeroflot flight to Kazakhstan where they hitch a ride on a Russian Rocket, blessed, you may be interested to learn by a Russian Orthodox priest before launch - as are the astronauts themselves if they so desire as I'm told they often do

Anonymous said...

Andrei, the would-be travellers shouldn't wait till Kazakhstan - the blessing (shriving/last rites/Kaddish) should be given before boarding Aeroflop.

Martin Menshevik

Andrei said...

Perhaps so Martin, perhaps so

Though to be fair Aeroflot hasn't lost an American Astronaut yet and the heady days when the USA's finest set off for the Moon from Southern Florida have long since gone - there's no way to get yourself into orbit in these days of malaise without transiting the Baikonur Cosmodrome departure lounge

Anonymous said...

You're right, Andrei, though I think the Chinese are working on developing their other great contribution to world civilisation (besides dim sum), the skyrocket.
I can't see America under Obama - already deeply in hock to the Chinese - mounting a challenge to this.

The Chinese Navy: coming to an ocean near you soon.


Peter Carrell said...

Hi Ron
Please do not use the word 'bigot' in a comment. The following is accordingly moderated:

"This video - of people discussing drug addiction just goes to show Peter Hitchens as a dangerously opinionated [person] - against anything that he see as 'sinful' rather than either a 'natural' situation, or a situation that occurs as a health problem.

As his opposition to alcoholism is based on his lack of understanding of the facts of addiction - ably demonstrated in this video; so is his opposition to homosexuality based on prejudice rather than objective science.

[] ."