Of course, no one is suggesting that X!

"Progressives" usually advance their agenda with assurances that there are perfectly reasonable limits on what they will agitate for: "Of course, no one is proposing that we set up a racial quota system, or ban speech we find offensive!" This assurance is given just a few years before a racial quota system is set up, or offensive speech is banned.

I recall assurances from a few years ago that "Of course, no one is suggesting that we force churches to marry gay couples!"

And once again...

17 comments:

  1. "I recall assurances from a few years ago that "Of course, no one is suggesting that we force churches to marry gay couples!"

    Just wondering, were these assurances made by Danish people?

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    1. By advocates of gay marriage.

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  2. I hope that you'll also acknowledge that there are people on the other side who spend time arguing against against policy X, not because they actually think that policy Y will lead to policy X, but because they don't want to admit that they would oppose policy Y even if it didn't lead to policy X.

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  3. Gene,

    I think that the problem is that the liberal idea of tolerance is self defeating; you have to have a sound moral base in order to be tolerant. This is not only impossible in conception, but also in practice, as we are finding out the real results of "Progressive tolerance"; its just a Progressive agenda.

    What liberals really mean when they say tolerance is "what liberals think should be tolerated." The idea that tolerance can be divorced from moral judgment is absurd. Catholic philosopher J. Budziszewski refutes this in his classic essay, "The Illusion of Moral Neutrality":

    http://www.firstthings.com/article/1993/08/003-the-illusion-of-moral-neutrality

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  4. It seems that libertarians, progressives, and movement conservatives form the political trifecta against which you have the most problems with politically.

    Concerning Denmark, I've always seen them and the other Scandinavian countries as belonging to a strange category of their own. Extravagant welfare apparatuses, mildly repressive paternalism, high taxes, happy populations, and funky sounding words. A policy like that one would never be able to gain any traction here in the states, I think, because freedom of religion is so firmly entrenched in American culture and case law.

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    1. "A policy like that one would never be able to gain any traction here in the states..."

      Ha! And Catholic organizations would never, ever be forced to pay for their employees birth control either, right?

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    2. Touché. If a similar law were to be passed here in America, however, it in all likelihood be at the state-level. Now, it used to be that the Bill of Rights until the Supreme Court began to develop the incorporation doctrine. I'd place all my bets on SCOTUS striking down such a state law as a violation of the First Amendment due to the strong record of it in case law. (For the record, I am not a progressive nor do I approve of the contraception mandate.)

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    3. "It seems that libertarians, progressives, and movement conservatives form the political trifecta against which you have the most problems with politically."

      Ideologues, Samson.

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    4. You have to understand that a progressive can't stop pushing for MORE CHANGE. The movement is premised on human perfectibility, and since we are not perfect yet: MORE CHANGE!

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    5. You have to understand that a progressive can't stop pushing for MORE CHANGE. The movement is premised on human perfectibility, and since we are not perfect yet: MORE CHANGE!

      Aye. That kind of attitude never ends well. You've said before that progressivism inherited its reformist nature from classical liberalism, but would you consider it (either old progressivism or its modern incarnation) to be a variety of liberalism?

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  5. Literally, "no one" would almost never be true, so it is best to interpret it as "no one of us" where us is some small group or a large majority of a large group. Most categorical statements are of this order, "no one", "ever". No one would ever say such a thing.

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    1. In this context, what was meant was "There is absolutely no danger that X will actually come to pass."

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  6. Gene,

    Although this might surprise you, I was once a member of the left; I was a libertarian, and as such, I was pretty blind to things. I grew out of it as I continued to read and study history.

    I'm at a loss for a really good book that demonstrates a good historical - and even philosophical - argument against liberalism, however. What I have are bits and pieces from various places that together form a strong argument, but it would be nice to have it all "in one place", or at least in various places.

    Do you have any suggestions?

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    1. Not a book, but five: Eric Voegelin's Order and History.

      Now you are in for the ride of your life.

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    2. Hmm. I'll buy them, then. I have heard of this Voegelin; some say he is profound.

      I'm a little nervous, though... big rides can be fun, but also scary.

      *sigh* here goes...

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    3. Just start with The New Science of Politics. Then you can get more if you like it.

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    4. Gene,

      I'll get them all. I'll buy The New Science of Politics as well. I am always reading and thinking.

      I'm just hoping that this gentleman isn't a little over my head, that is is all. So far, the recommendations that I have gotten on this blog have proven profound, even life changing. It was an argument on here that, in fact, made me question the liberalism that I was stuck in; libertarian anarchism (yes, I was one of those folks.) In this time that I rejected libertarianism, I also came to reject the atheism that weighed down on me like a giant anchor. I've changed a lot over the past few years; I'm ready to change some more.

      Thanks for all of the suggestions. You helped save on fool from himself. Academia - at least, where I am studying it - would not have done so.

      So! Here goes nothing.

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