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Post 20

Monday, November 6 - 5:52amSanction this postReply
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I looked up taqiya in Wikipedia.  Apparently it is only permissible in response to persecution, "where there is overwhelming danger of loss of life or property and where no danger to religion would occur thereby".  Also it sometimes involves lying to other Muslims, as when one Muslim faction persecutes another. 



Post 21

Monday, November 6 - 4:52pmSanction this postReply
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Doug,

 

You mentioned a "general prejudice against the less developed world" - there is a progressive meme that arises out of cultural relativism that dismisses any judgements about more primitive cultures as wrong per se.  Cultural relativism attempts to make it politically incorrect to claim an objective moral standard. 
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I'm not a supporter of Christianity - neither orthodox Christianity nor any of the versions that push for collective salvation.  I'm opposed to any idea that a belief should be accepted as a product of faith or revelation.  I certainly agree that Christianity was (and still is) anti-Capitalism and anti-reason.  I agree that it has a horrible history.  And I think it would be awful again, if it acquired the political power.
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It isn't Capitalism that moderates societies in such a way as to have made Christianity become more benevolent.  And it isn't Capitalism that would somehow moderate Islam given enough time.  It is acceptance of reason and individualism that lead to Capitalism.  Capitalism is what we call what is left when you take away the option of initiating force.  Islam (in all of its strains) does NOT provide the needed philosophical base for a government that would create the conditions that Capitalism needs.
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"I looked up taqiya in Wikipedia.  Apparently it is only permissible in response to persecution, 'where there is overwhelming danger of loss of life or property and where no danger to religion would occur thereby'.   

 

Islam doesn't support individual rights, so one wonders what a danger to life or property would mean.  Are they saying that it is not okay to lie, except under those conditions, but it is okay to engage in honor killings, rape, etc?  Islam doesn't recognize individual rights.  Under Islam, the individual is not soveriegn.  Islam means submission.

 

I think taquiya is much like Saul Alinsky's insistence that the end justifies the means.  It is just a way to throw morality out the window while pretending to be moral.  When reason isn't at the base of a philosophical position, all bets are off when it comes to honesty.



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Post 22

Monday, November 6 - 5:20pmSanction this postReply
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I agree that quoting Bertrand Russell is problematic at best. He was apparently very good at mathematics and logic but obviously not able to apply them well to much else. Quoting Betrand Russell is like quoting William James, just because James happened to say something you agree with.

 

Contrary to Steve's misinterpretation of my intent, I was not demonizing all conservatives and Republicans, but pointing to the fallacious demand that "moderate" Muslims are morally obligated to denounced fundamentalists. It is weak rhetoric. Evidence of the fallacy is the lack of equal concern for equal evils. Ayn Rand herself was very good at including all evils under wide abstractions of "mysticism" and "collectivism." The reason that weak altruists do not condemn strong altruists is that they share the same premises. The reason that some weak altruists do condemn strong altruists is that the former have a mixed-premise philosophy and their good ideas and moral choices (even though in internal conflict) lead them to correctly identify the evils of those others who made consistently immoral choices. That all being so, it is not incumbant upon you to denounce everything done by everyone with whom you happen to share some beliefs out of context.  

 

Kyrel's open question, asking (without verbatim advocating) why all Muslims are not deported, executed, or imprisoned is at best a troll for comments. But having read his posts here over the years, I know that he is not just raising interesting debate questions. He is calling for the violation of the rights of innocent individuals.

 

(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 11/06, 5:24pm)



Post 23

Monday, November 6 - 5:38pmSanction this postReply
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Steve,

 

"how many are needed to make a problem?" 

 

If there is exactly one, that is enough to make a problem, but it is a problem with the individual, not the religion.

 

How many Muslims condone honor killings and rape?  How many of them are in the United States?  Are the honor killings and rape coming from Islam or from other cultural traditions?

 

As I understand it, Islam means submission to "God".  It does not mean human beings are supposed to submit to other human beings.

 

(Edited by Doug Morris on 11/06, 5:44pm)



Post 24

Monday, November 6 - 5:47pmSanction this postReply
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Steve,

 

If a bad government was executing people for admitting that they were Objectivists, would you think ill of me if I didn't admit to it?  Ayn Rand said "morality ends where a gun begins".



Post 25

Monday, November 6 - 5:58pmSanction this postReply
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Bertrand Russell's problem was not just with applying mathematics and logic.  It was also with providing a philosophical underpinning for them.



Post 26

Tuesday, November 7 - 12:30amSanction this postReply
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The key to understanding Islam is simply to study it. Be fearless and don't accept familiar bullshit. Read the Cur'an. Talk to Muslims. When chatting, be unfailingly respectful and friendly, but ask all of your questions. Don't be intimidated by "religion of peace", PC, and SJW standards and con men. Even when talking with the most English-speaking, assimilated, pro-American Muslim, an honest or perceptive person should be able to catch them lying in a major way in less than five minutes. Be uniformly sociable as you talk, but don't self-censor. Ask your questions while assuming and pretending that they are a civilized, decent, virtuous, pro-reason, pro-freedom, normal person. If you're truly seeking knowledge, that will quickly give you your answer as to the nature of Muslims and Islam, currently and historically.


To cut to the chase intellectually, there is non-stop news and discussion of Islam and Muslims here: https://www.jihadwatch.org.



Post 27

Tuesday, November 7 - 4:47amSanction this postReply
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Kyrel, can you give examples of such lies?



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Post 28

Tuesday, November 7 - 6:52pmSanction this postReply
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Doug,

 

You wrote, "...but it is a problem with the individual, not the religion."  Actions are always done by individuals - they make choices and act - on their beliefs.   Unless you don't believe that ideas have any effect then you must acknowedge that Islam contains the ideas behind the killing of thousands and thousands.  We are NOT hearing about Buddhist terrorism, are we?
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How many Muslims condone honor killings and rape?  How many of them are in the United States?  Are the honor killings and rape coming from Islam or from other cultural traditions?

 

Again... this is not about those that do not condone these barbaric act.  It is about a huge number of people who DO condone those ideas.  We aren't talking about Christian honor killings, or Jewish beliefs that it is okay to rape infidel women. 

 

Why is it critical that there are fewer people who follow the barbaric practices that are a part of Islam in America, compared to other countries? 

 

A culture is identified by its ideas so any attempt to discriminate between "cultural traditions" and the ideas that make them is a distinction without a serious difference.

 

Objectivists judge much more than just actions, but primarily ideas.
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Submission is enforced by people - people who behead other people.  So, what the Hell is the difference between "submit to God" and submit to those who claim to speak for God.  Islamist terrorists proclaim their allegiance during the very moment of killing others for failing to "submit."
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Steve,
 
If a bad government was executing people for admitting that they were Objectivists, would you think ill of me if I didn't admit to it?  Ayn Rand said "morality ends where a gun begins".

 

Doug, YOU are the one who has been arguing on the side of those making the threats with guns.  YOU are the one who wrote that jihad and sharia are not meant to include physical aggression. 

 

Yes, Ayn Rand said that morality ends where a gun begins.  She wrote it to explain that morality requires an environment where choice is possible - and she believed that those who threatened with a gun are the ones who take morality out of the equation.  And she said that there is no such thing as a right to violate a right.  So, the people threatening with a gun, have no right to do so.  It is true that you would not have admit to anything when under a gun.  But it is also true that you could shoot the person who threatened you with the gun.  They, in effect, gave up their rights when they violated the rights of another.



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Post 29

Wednesday, November 8 - 4:04amSanction this postReply
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I pointed to Cairo 1600. Doug suggested Baghdad 1100. I offer also Toledo 900.  In different times and places, different cultural context within the broad cutlure of Islam saw flourishings of learning and openness.  I point to this article "People of the Book" from www.myjewishlearning.com online. It is not surprising in any way, just well written and nuanced.  In particular, the author cites my example of Cairo and the Jewish genizah there. That invaluable store of otherwise lost records has provided scholars with a rich and detailed primary narrative encompassing centuries.  If you had to choose to be an "infidel" somewhere anytime from 500 to 1950, you were better off in Cairo or Baghdad or Istanbul than London, Paris, or Berlin.  

 

It is not that Islam is better, but that the substrate culture over which it was laid was already pluralistic. 

 

Conservatives decry multi-culturalism and I easily agree that abandoning all standards of value leaves us incapable of moral judgment. That said, I also point out that empirically, historically, those cultures that were broader and more accepting of others tended to be better places for individuals to live. The Renaissance and the Enlightenment were both examples of that.  The Renaissance was by definition the rediscovery and rebirth of ancient pagan ideas - Cicero, Plutarch...  But if any one point in history defines the moment, it was not Petrarch and Dante bringing home ancient scrolls, but the merchants of Genoa and Venice defying the law against Arabic numbers and thereby launching algebra contests in the public square.

 

(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 11/08, 4:09am)



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Post 30

Wednesday, November 8 - 5:40amSanction this postReply
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Steve,

 

The motivation for terrorism is not just ideas.  It also lies in political and economic conditions in the countries where it originates, which trace back to past and present bad government.  It also lies in other conflicts, such as the Arab-Israeli conflict.

 

Religion is not the only source of the ideas in a culture.  America and Britain are similar religiously, but America is significantly more violent than Britain, and has been since before significant numbers of Muslims started coming here.

 

Mark Twain said "Let me control the superstitions of a country and I care not who controls its churches or its schools."

 

We are not hearing about Buddhist terrorism, but we are hearing about Buddhist persecution (including rape) of Muslims in Myanmar.

 

Any good Muslim tries to submit to "God".  It does not follow that they submit to those who claim to speak for "God" or that they try to force submission on others.

 

Part of what I am arguing against is statements like Kyrel's "The vast majority of Muslims in America support the social ideals of jihad (i.e. war) and sharia (i.e. slavery)".

 

"It is true that you would not have admit to anything when under a gun."  Doesn't this apply to Muslims as well?  That is the essence of taqiya.

 

"But it is also true that you could shoot the person who threatened you with the gun."  Since you bring it up, doesn't this apply to Muslims as well?   

 

(Edited by Doug Morris on 11/08, 5:42am)



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Post 31

Wednesday, November 8 - 9:17amSanction this postReply
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Marotta wrote: "Conservatives decry multi-culturalism and I easily agree that abandoning all standards of value leaves us incapable of moral judgment." 

 

He is correct in saying that multi-culturalism leaves those who accept it without any standard of judgement.  But that isn't the way conservatives articulate it.  It is Objectivism that defines an objective standard of value (and classical liberalism before that... just not as clearly).  At least that is where I learned about universal, absolute values. 

 

The big push behind multi-culturalism (and it is a political correctness push) comes from the progressives and can be traced back to that Frankfurt School of Critical Theory brought to Columbia University in 1935 by Marxists.

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I just want to point out something strange.  When someone starts a thread on RoR that criticizes Islam (usually dealing with the ideas in today's context), what happens?  One or two people respond by talking about the wonderfulness of Islam in this or that small part of the world and many, many centuies ago - they point out that if you go back in history you can find Christians behaving like barbarians on part of their religion. 

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Islam, as written, is evil.  The world is truely fortunate that the vast majority of Muslims misinterpret it as a religion of peace.



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Post 32

Wednesday, November 8 - 10:41amSanction this postReply
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The motivation for terrorism is not just ideas.  It also lies in political and economic conditions in the countries where it originates, which trace back to past and present bad government.  It also lies in other conflicts, such as the Arab-Israeli conflict.

 

Doug, much of that statement coincides with the current progressive talking point and I don't buy it. 

 

The Saudis who took down the World Trade Center were educated and from wealthy families, and Bin Laden himself was very wealthy.  We have what are misnamed "Lone Wolves" here in the US and in France, Belgium, Germany, Spain, Italy, Sweden, etc.  But they aren't lone wolves, they are united by having declared allegiance to ISIS or at least to the Islamist cause.  Ideas!  Not political conditions, countries of origin, economic condition, bad governments, or the fact that Jews live in Israel and have an ongoing conflict with a number of Arab nations.

 

I would agree that it is not just ideas.  It is a set of ideas that match some kind of psychological state - a long-lasting, bitter, pathological hatred.  Not a rational hatred.  Not a justified hatred.  It is a pathological, irrational emotional state (anger, insecurity, fear, personal isolation, etc.) that pairs up with an ideology that serves as a rationale.  They become chicken and egg.  The hate is explained by the ideology and the ideology helps keep the hate alive, fierce and focused.  Want to think of it is very simple terms?  Sick people latch onto sick ideas and then engage in sick behaviors.
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Religion is not the only source of the ideas in a culture.  America and Britain are similar religiously, but America is significantly more violent than Britain, and has been since before significant numbers of Muslims started coming here.

 

Of course religion is not the only source of ideas in a culture.  But historically it has been the major source of moral codes.  And morality is a key motivator in taking action that involve force.

 

What are you referring to when you say "violent"?  Individual criminal violence unrelated to terrorism?  National wars using the military?  Are you accounting for population differences?  Have you tracked the increase in violence in all countries as their population of muslims increases? (Belgium, France, Germany, Sweden, etc.) 

 

People are running into crowds with knives, rented trucks, semi-automatic weapons... and they have sworn allegiance to ISIS and yell "Allah Akbar" - that is an unmistakable connection between religion and violence and increases with direct proportion to the increase of Muslims in a country.  Those are just simple facts.
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Part of what I am arguing against is statements like Kyrel's "The vast majority of Muslims in America support the social ideals of jihad (i.e. war) and sharia (i.e. slavery)".

 

If Kyrel's statment had said a "significant percentage" instead of "vast majority" would that have changed your view?  And isn't tens of thousands still a shocking number?  And Kyrel's statement is about "support the social ideals" of jihad and sharia.  It doesn't say they are active, or in agreement with all the Islamists methods.  It says that more than 50% of American Muslims support jihad and sharia as social goals. 

 

My questions are these: Why would you argue against that without some evidence that it isn't true, and doesn't that statement, if at all true, concern you?  Why not?
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Assuming you are here in America (with the internet one never knows), then do you consider yourself under the gun to support Islam? 

 

I'm here in America and I don't feel like I'm under the gun to be quiet - why should anyone else?  I've heard a few (very few) Muslims speak out strongly against Islamism.  They clearly aren't being stopped by some implied gun?  In otherwords, I'm not buying this concept of a world of good Muslims, numbering in the billions, all so frightened of being killed this alleged small number of alleged poor, mistreated young men who are supposedly just angry about Israel and/or not having a job. 

 

All of these good people, all over the world, are so constantly frightened that they can't speak out about the kidnapping of whole villages of children for sex slaves, for mass beheadings, for blowing up innocent men women and children, for setting people on fire and other acts of insanity.  I don't buy it.
--------------------------------

 

You mentioned the persecution of Muslims in Myanmar.  If you check you will find that the anger directed at the Muslims is not on behalf of Buddhism.  It was an attack on members of a minority group done, mostly, by the military.  The majority of the people in the country are Buddists - but that doesn't equate to acting on behalf of their religion, nor are they acting in ways that coincide with any Buddist writings or teachings.  (Myanmar is almost 90% Buddhists and mostly Theravada - they subscribe to the teaching of Buddha as written down in the Pali Cannon - it is like their Koran.  Try to find any verse in there that advocated using force on behalf of the religion - you can't do it.)

 

The progressives have created Fake News out events in Myanmar to make the Muslims appear to have been persecuted by "radical Buddhists" - what is needed is the other side of the issue which might have the title: "Negative Actions taken by Muslim Minority, on behalf of their religion, Against the People of Myanmar, lead to Military Action." Remember that the group of Muslims who are most often in trouble in Myanmar are those along the border of Bangladesh which was born of the violent conflict between Muslims and Hindu in India.

 

Bottom line: If you think that there are ideological problems with Buddhism that are leading to violence on behalf of that religion.  And if you see that as being as significant as the violence carried out on on behalf of Islam... well, I'd be surprised.  

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Political correctness, fake news, a very liberal educational system, and a very liberal news media have left far too many people believing the lie that Islam is a religion of peace and that conservatives claim otherwise because they are caught up in a kind of emotional militarism against Islam that isn't justified.



Post 33

Wednesday, November 8 - 4:37pmSanction this postReply
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Ultimately, it really does seem to be the case that most American Muslims financially support jihad and sharia. That means most personally back, and put into practice, the mass-murder and enslavement of the planet. Until recently, the biggest American Muslim charity group was The Holyland Foundation. You can read about it here: 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holy_Land_Foundation_for_Relief_and_Development

It's good that this criminal and jihadi/sharia organization was finally shut down, and a tiny number of its leaders jailed. But many, many others just like it seem to exist. So why aren't they forcibly closed down? Why aren't their leaders in jail? And -- most importantly -- why aren't all the hundreds of thousands of Muslim donors to these charities tracked down, and then tossed in the clink and/or kicked out of the country?  



Post 34

Wednesday, November 8 - 4:57pmSanction this postReply
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In Post #27, Doug asks: "Kyrel, can you give examples of such [Muslim] lies?"

Really, anything. And wild statements of evil too. Muslims routinely say: "Islam is/means peace." "Islam is the religion of peace." "Muslims favor peace with America/the world." "Most Muslims oppose terrorism." "A Jew killed Mohammad." "Jews did 9/11." "Israel is perpetrating a holocaust against Arabs." "Jihad mostly means self-defense. Or quiet self-improvement. Jihad means to struggle in the path of god." "Sharia mostly means justice. Or moral goodness. It doesn't really involve coercion or tyranny." "Americans mostly lie about Islam." "Americans are very misinformed about the past history and current practice of Islam." 

Ironically, that last statement is massively true. But not in the way they mean it! 



Post 35

Wednesday, November 8 - 8:22pmSanction this postReply
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Steve,

 

I mentioned the history of Islam in response to Kyrel's post implying that Islam did not develop further after Mohammed.

 

You can find evil things in the Christian Bible too, such as "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live".  At one point, the Old Testament says that if a man and a woman are caught fornicating in town, she must not have called for help or someone would have heard her.  So she is to be put to death.  The man has to pay a fine.

 

When I said America is more violent than Britain, I was referring to individual criminal violence unrelated to terrorism, and also to the love of guns.

 

Only a very small number of professed Muslims are committing the violence, but they get a lot of attention.

 

A "vast majority" would have to be a lot more than 50%.  I don't see any evidence that it is even close to a majority.  I shouldn't have to prove a negative.

 

I'm not claiming that anyone is under the gun.  I mentioned being under threat of death to clarify what taqiya is about.



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Post 36

Wednesday, November 8 - 8:31pmSanction this postReply
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So why aren't they forcibly closed down? Why aren't their leaders in jail? And -- most importantly -- why aren't all the hundreds of thousands of Muslim donors to these charities tracked down, and then tossed in the clink and/or kicked out of the country?  

 

This is how I'd summarize the answer to Kyrel's question.

 

1. Political correctness has damaged our culture's commonsense and sapped our will.


2. The level of corruption in Washington, DC is so high that it is only matched by congressional cowardice.  They won't do anything equivalent to a declaration of war.  Without that we can't do as Kyrel suggests while remaining a nation of laws. 

 

The link between a proper government and the defense against serious threats to our liberty consists of good laws defining, and criminalizing intitiated force in an objective fashion. 



Post 37

Wednesday, November 8 - 8:34pmSanction this postReply
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Kyrel,

 

The majority of statements you list as lies are statements whose truth or falsity we have been arguing here.

 

How many Muslims say a Jew killed Mohammed or Jews did 9/11?  

 

The Arab-Israeli conflict is messy and is very destructive for both sides.  People can have differences of opinion about it without being evil.  



Post 38

Wednesday, November 8 - 8:53pmSanction this postReply
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Steve,

 

Whether we should be concerned about Muslims supporting jihad and sharia depends on what they take jihad and sharia to mean, which is one of the things we have been debating here.

 

We need to be concerned about people committing violence in the name of Islam.  I'm not questioning that.  I'm questioning whether we should blame Islam.



Post 39

Thursday, November 9 - 1:26amSanction this postReply
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Doug, you wrote:

 

We need to be concerned about people committing violence in the name of Islam.  I'm not questioning that.  I'm questioning whether we should blame Islam.

 

There are four ingredients to every violation of an individuals rights.  The very first is an idea.  Without the idea, the person couldn't act.  That idea has to be in the head of the person just to be an idea.  The action is required to violate a right.  The link between the idea and the action is emotion.  It is to a human what gasoline is to the car we drive.

 

1. First comes the idea

2. It lives within a mind - the person.

3. The person imbues the idea with enough emotion to act.

4. Finally, the violation only takes place as an action.

 

Each component must stand judgment.  Should we damn communism as a collection of ideas that ended with tens of millions being slaughtered?  If not, then ideas have no importance.  It is the ideas that are most important here on ROR, just because that is our focus.  But that doesn't mean that ideas are the only entity to be considered.  

 

It is the person who accepts ideas, even evil ones.  And, that person has a psychology and in the case of bad actors, like terrorists, they choose bad ideas and their vile behaviors to suit their emotional needs.  And each person's psychology is itself the product of the choices they have made over the course of their lives.  Those emotions power them - like the hatred we see in terrorists.  And it those emotions exists because they chose to bad ideas for bad reasons and lied to themselves about what they were doing.  The violent actions were, for each and every person, their choice.

 

If one person said that Jesus told him to kill his wife, we wouldn't blame Christianity, but if a very high percentage of Christians were killing people and claiming the were told to by their religion, and if we read the foundational writings of that religion and found such rhetoric, and if we heard speeches and sermons of the leading holy figures in this religion calling for death to non-believers, then we should place blame on that religion.

 

There are over a billion peaceful Muslims.  And everyone of them is aware that a huge number of terrorist acts are perpetrated by other Muslims and in the name of Allah.  And that this isn't the case with other religions.  When this is the case, and it goes on year after year after year, a part of their mind has to reexamine their faith, or silently decide to ignore or even support the terrorism.  

 

Here is my question: what is it about Islam that you find to be of value?



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