Thursday, May 24, 2012

Theodore Roosevelt on the incompatibility of Islam and Western values

It is utterly impossible to appreciate social values at all or to discriminate between what is socially good and socially bad unless we appreciate the utterly different social values of different wars. The Greeks who triumphed at Marathon and Salamis did a work without which the world would have been deprived of the social value of Plato and Aristotle, of Aeschylus, Herodotus, and Thucydides. The civilization of Europe, America, and Australia exists today at all only because of the victories of civilized man over the enemies of civilization, because of victories stretching through the centuries from the days of Miltiades and Themistocles to those of Charles Martel in the eighth century and those of John Sobieski in the seventeenth century. During the thousand years that included the careers of the Frankish soldier and the Polish king the Christians of Asia and Africa proved unable to wage successful war with the Moslem conquerors; and in consequence Christianity practically vanished from the two continents; and today nobody can find in them any " social values" whatever, in the sense in which we use the words, so far as the sphere of Mohammedan influence and the decaying native Christian churches are concerned. There are such "social values" today in Europe, America, and Australia only because during those thousand years the Christians of Europe possessed the warlike power to do what the Christians of Asia and Africa had failed to do, that is, to beat back the Moslem invader. It is of course worth while for sociologists to discuss the effect of this European militarism on "social values," but only if they first clearly realize and formulate the fact that if the European militarism had not been able to defend itself against and to overcome the militarism of Asia and Africa, there would have been no "social values" of any kind in our world today, and no sociologists to discuss them.
-- Theodore Roosevelt, "Social Values and National Existence", Papers and Proceedings of the American Sociological Society, vols 9-10, 1916

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

"If I wanted America to fail"

Life of Julia ad campaign

It's so insipid that The New Yorker likens it to paper dolls, Chutes and Ladders, and gasp inspired by the aesthetics of USA Today. The New Yorker is by no stretch conservative, but they've always had a superior sense of style, and Life Of Julia's style rubs them the wrong way.

Friday, May 04, 2012

Friday ADHD links

Introducing a feature carried over from my Protein Wisdom guest-blogging days, hope you like some of these...

Further disproof of the notion that education deters terrorism: A Maryland honor student pleaded guilty Friday to conspiring to help a Pennsylvania woman known as "Jihad Jane" plot to kill a Swedish cartoonist who had offended some Muslims.

Black hole observed eating sun-sized star in real-time. Took the astronomers a year to figure out what they were looking at, though. Amazing that we have the capability AND the interest to discover these things.

Zombie communism. The perfect is still the enemy of the good. It's appalling to think that there are still thinkers out there for whom a 100 million body count is not an automatic anathema for a political idea. It's like Richard John Neuhaus of First Things, now edited by J. Bottum, once said, "Socialism is the religion people get when the lose their religion."

Euthanasia without express consent was reported to be on the rise in Belgium last autumn. I just discovered this blog, of the director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition.

Middle East feminist Mona Eltahawy gives it to female hating Muslims hot and strong here. One of the debate squashers at LoonWatch weighs in with her cloud of squid ink response here.