Weltanschauung

Here is an article from Bob Jones University Press on the importance of protecting Real True Christian children from the dangers of secular textbooks:

When we compare “textbook to textbook,” leaving out all of the “bells and whistles” that the secular publishers use to package their products, I am convinced that the instructional design, strong biblical integration and proven student achievement results of BJU Press textbooks give Christian schools a “no-brainer” option — to go with a product that honors God and guides students to a biblical worldview.

They really like that word, “worldview,” there at BJU Press.

BJU’s creationist science textbook, “Physical Science Student Worktext,” is advertised as teaching students “that a Christian worldview permeates true science.” Here’s a lecture series from BJU on “Why is thinking about worldviews important?” and “Forming a Christian worldview.

Bob Jones University is not an evangelical Christian school. It is, rather, one of the flagship institutions of fundamentalism, and more particularly of a Southern gothic, belligerent fundamentalism. Most evangelicals are just as creeped out by Bob Jones University as everybody else is. Yet for a certain segment of American fundamentalist Christianity, Bob Jones University is a  city on a hill, an outpost of truth-telling boldy confronting a world of lies.

Bob Jones is enormously respected by the network of Christian authors, speakers and radio hosts who make up the Worldview Weekend movement, which organizes seminars and conferences across America urging RTCs to take up arms in what it calls “the Worldview War Between Christians and the Secular Left.” The group also has its own publishing imprint, selling titles such as Christian Worldview for Students and Christian Worldview for Children.

This again isn’t a mainstream evangelical group. The kids raised on Christian Worldview for Children are homeschooled, and they don’t go off to college to places like Wheaton, Messiah or Calvin College. Those types of schools are viewed by this crowd as suspiciously liberal and insufficiently committed to a comprehensive biblical worldview.

Are you getting a sense yet of the connotations of that word, “worldview,” and what its repeated use signals?

Other Christians may use the word too, occasionally, rarely, in a way that conforms more closely to its usual dictionary definition or to the way the German sociologists used it when they coined the term weltanschauung. But when you hear it used frequently, the way it’s employed by the BJU Press and the Worldview Weekend folks above, it is a signpost term. It helps to show where the user falls on the spectrum between typical Christianity Today/Wheaton College/Ned Flanders mainstream evangelicalism and the scary lunatic fringe of radical separatists, dominionists and third-generation homeschoolers. The more you hear someone talk about “Christian worldviews” or “biblical worldviews” the further to the extreme right of that spectrum you can expect them to be.

Use of the word in this sense tells you that the speaker is almost certainly a persecuted hegemon — someone who simultaneously believes that America is a “Christian nation,” founded on Christian principles and that Christians in America are a persecuted, um, majority. It suggests that the speaker distrusts public schools. That they’re inclined to oppose the separation of church and state. That they likely believe in young-earth creationism, probably even believing that Josh McDowell and/or Kirk Cameron has disproved evolution. They believe in moral absolutes — and have absolute confidence in their ability to know them absolutely. They believe that America’s troubles trace back to Engel v. Vitale and Roe v. Wade and believe that God will bless America once those rulings are overturned.

Need more examples? Here’s “The American Vision: Restoring America’s Biblical Foundation from Genesis to Revelation.” They publish Biblical Worldview magazine.

Or spend some time clicking around at Christianworldview.net, which says “The purpose of our Christian Apologetics ministry is to equip people to think and live with a consistent and cohesive biblical worldview.

Or check out WorldviewMatters or the Biblical Worldview Institute or Worldview Academy or AllAboutWorldview.org.

Surf around. Get a feel for the connotations of the word and what its use signals.

Got it?

OK. Now watch this:

 

"‘This Is Not of God’: When Anti-Trump Evangelicals Confront Their BrethrenBy Laurie GoodsteinMay 23, 2018https://www.nytimes.com/201..."

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  • Steve

    I watched the video Fred embedded in the post…but found this as one of the recommended videos afterward…this is good, check it out:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GaNPAgX_o-Q

  • Ryan Ferneau

    Support Palin – ‘won’t repeat mistakes she knows nothing about’
    Maybe home-schooling is just another method of preventing knowledge from gettin’ in. Like sex ed…to prevent teen pregnancy, as an example.

    It does seem like a core conservative philsophy now: “What you don’t know can’t hurt you, therefore ignorance is safety!”

  • Me!

    I’m very puzzled as to the connection between the article and the video. The only connection is the word “worldview”, which Palin says like once and her usage has really nothing to do with the article. It seems as if you’re somehow trying to combine a criticism of people who trumpet themselves as having a “Christian worldview” while simultaneously slamming Palin, but it just doesn’t come together right when the connection you offer is tenuous at best.
    I mean, there’s a lot more things to criticize her for from that interview, but attacking her usage of “worldview” when it’s not really being used in any connection to what you’re writing about seems dubious.
    Though I have to say the more I find out about Palin, the more I’m befuddled McCain picked her. I was honestly probably going to vote for McCain, but all my goodwill went out the window when he picked her as his VP (especially because he’s more likely to die in office than previous Presidents, making the VP pick even more important). If Obama doesn’t manage to convince me to vote for him I probably just won’t vote for President this election. Still, this honestly comes as a cheap shot at Palin.

  • Cowboy Diva: Tom Kuhn was a kinsman of mine and I’ve read rather more of his writing than just the book that he’s famous for. Did those discussions ever cover his actual views or just the “po-mo reality is subjective” mangling that everyone seems to parrot?

  • Cowboy Diva

    Rhoadan.
    Please bear with me, this was almost 20 years ago and my textbooks are long gone (or at least, in a box in the basement).
    His text on scientific revolutions (does that sound right?) was given to freshmen in an interdisciplinary science/religion course. The instructors and discussion leaders (sophomores who had the class the previous year) tried to expand the concept of paradigm shift out of just the history of science and into as many areas of culture and study as they could. The phrase would pop up in courses other than that mentioned above (especially in things like history-related stuff and other soft sciences), in an effort to talk about why things are not necessarily perceived the way they always have been. In any case, just dropping the phrase “paradigm shift” into a conversation would cause upperclassmen to roll their eyes in mock-disgust.
    For some of these incoming students (who were mostly missouri baptists then) however, the concept that worldviews (there’s that word again) could change over time with new information and ideas was just SHOCKING.
    I have no idea if the book is still used in course studies. As for “po-mo reality is subjective” possibly given my description above I guess so, but given that postmodernism was not actually discussed outside of art/lit courses, I have no idea. Remember, most of the students came from a tradition that at that time did not lend itself to thinking outside of the box. Kuhn gave them the words to use to do so.

  • Amaryllis

    [Kuhn’s] text on scientific revolutions (does that sound right?) was given to freshmen in an interdisciplinary science/religion course.
    Ah yes, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions was given to me in my Theory of Anthropology class. *pulls copy from shelf of old textbooks* And when I say “given,” I mean that I apparently paid $2.25 for it. I wonder what its price in the college bookstore would be now?
    And I remember all those discussions of “paradigm shift” as not so much “reality is subjective.” More like, adaptations in theoretical perspective may allow more complete understanding of objective reality. But it’s been an even longer time for me since those sessions over a pitcher in the local dive.

    And for today’s Sarah Palin link, an interesting column in the N.Y. Times. Some lines which raised my hackles:
    When Ms. Palin had to cut her first state budget, she avoided the legion of frustrated legislators and mayors. Instead, she huddled with her budget director and her husband, Todd, an oil field worker who is not a state employee
    Anyone remember the Republican howls about Hillary Clinton’s prominent place in her husband’s administration? “Who elected her?!”
    Interviews show that Ms. Palin runs an administration that puts a premium on loyalty and secrecy.
    No, we <really don’t need another one of those.
    Many lawmakers contend that Ms. Palin is overly reliant on a small inner circle that leaves her isolated.
    Again: not again.
    Dan Fagan, a prominent conservative radio host and longtime friend of Ms. Palin, urged his listeners to vote for her in 2006. But when he took her to task for raising taxes on oil companies, he said, he found himself branded a “hater.” It is part of a pattern, Mr. Fagan said, in which Ms. Palin characterizes critics as “bad people who are anti-Alaska.”
    No please: not more of that.
    Of course, this is the New York Times I’m quoting here: aimed at arugula-eating Eastern liberals. But it’s troubling anyway.
    Repeat to self: Sarah Palin is a distraction. It’s John McCain who’s running– concentrate on defeating him. Better yet, concentrate on supporting your own candidate. Think positive!
    Husband is a Republican. His motto for this election: Vote for McCain and pray he doesn’t die.

  • Me

    For future reference Me =/= Me!
    I agree with Fred here, actually, Me!. Her word usage is very subtle, I’ll grant you, but she is using the evangelical dog whistles as naturally as Bush, which is probably the reason why McCain chose her – he couldn’t tap into that subculture as easily or as naturally as either Bush or Palin can.

  • Amaryllis

    For future reference Me =/= Me!
    Well then, pretty-please-with-sugar-on-top, could you both choose recognizable names that we could call you by?

  • VandanaShiva

    Fine, Me => VandanaShiva now. She’s my personal hero, so it only makes sense.

  • Amaryllis

    VandanaShiva: Thank you! Nice name!
    *blushes to admit ignorance of source; googles*
    Oh I see! Very interesting. Why have I never heard of Dr. Shiva before? Anyway, thanks for both the kind response and the new information.

  • some bastardized concept of what used to be a word with a real meaning, but then is turned into something so abstract that it can be sold to anyone without threat of actually making them live better lives.
    It’s a technique common in destructive cults to redefine words, so that when you have conversations with them you think you’re in agreement, when actually you aren’t. Scientology, for instance, uses “think for yourself” as a catchphrase, when actually thinking outside their bounds is forbidden. (Imagine my embarrassment when I showed up on Usenet with that as a .sig – it seemed a perfectly logical indicator of opposition to them!)
    “Mistakes were made”. Reminds me of…
    Yes, Minister’s list of standard excuses:
    1. There is a perfectly satisfactory explanation for everything but security prevents its disclosure (used in the Anthony Blunt case);
    2. It has only gone wrong because of heavy cuts in staff and budget which have stretched supervisory resources beyond the limit (the Comprehensive Schools excuse);
    3. It was a worthwhile experiment now abandoned, but not before it provided much valuable data and considerable employment (used for Concorde);
    4. It occurred before certain important facts were known and could not happen again (the Munich Agreement excuse with the important fact being that Hitler wanted to conquer Europe);
    5. It was an unfortunate lapse by an individual now being dealt with under internal disciplinary procedures (the Charge of the Light Brigade excuse).

  • bulbul

    Hawker,
    The fact that communism always seems to put sociopaths into positions of power is not mentioned…
    People like Stalin and Mao weren’t put in their positions by communism, they murdered and blackmailed their way in. Just like any other non-communist dictator (Pinochet, Peron, Franco, Trujillo, Salazar…).
    And speaking of communism, the rhetoric used by Republicans in this election cycle is eerily familiar. First there is Giuliani calling (albeit indirectly) Obama a cosmopolitan. That struck me as odd and I didn’t know why until happened to pick up a book on history of Czechoslovakia and was reminded of the show trials of 1950s where being “cosmopolitan” was one of the charges brought against the poor chaps (along with being a burgeois nationalist) and it was in fact a codeword for “Jewish”. And then there’s this “worldview” thing which featured in the waves of ‘vettings’ after 1948 and 1968 which were designed to weed out those ideologically confused and politically unreliable. The question was a simple one – “What is your worldview?”. The only acceptable answer: “Marxist.”
    Blackadder,
    He’s quite liberal for modern American tastes.
    Please, explain us how. And don’t start with that “the most liberal senator” BS.

  • Hawker Hurricane

    Indeed, bulbul. It seems that the 1st ruler (or perhaps the 2nd) of any communist state is a psychopath. While Stalin was the worst of the Russians, Lenin was no slouch at murdering his countrymen. Maybe it’s just the danger of successful revolutions, that in the choas the psychopaths have the advantage. Robespierre, Pinochet, Pol Pot… overthrow the existing order, and a new order will be imposed. By slaughter if need be.
    (No, not approving. Merely observing.)

  • Hawker Hurricane

    Oh, almost missed it… Republicans always claim that whoever the Democrats nominate for President is “The Most Liberal (blank)!” It’s never true.

  • It’s never true.
    And that’s a shame.

  • VandanaShiva

    Oh I see! Very interesting. Why have I never heard of Dr. Shiva before? Anyway, thanks for both the kind response and the new information.
    Well, knowing about her tends to entail knowing about Monsanto’s seemingly bottomless pit of evil, which the media seems relatively eager to hide.
    Still, I’m happy to spread the word. :D


  • Every time I hear the word “Worldview” it sends off warning signals to me. I never knew why. Thanks so much for this entry. It put into words my gut instinct.
    ~Jordi~

  • Y’know, there were three major Democratic candidates this season. I seriously thought about voting for the one candidate who would be the sure thing: a good looking white guy with a soothing Southern accent. Yes, I would be voting for him largely because of racism and sexism, but maybe I should be pragmatic instead of idealistic. At such a crucial time, should we really take the risk of voting for a woman or a black man?
    In the end I didn’t vote for Edwards. I decided that it was too hard to know whether one candidate was more electable than another. And I’d say I was proved right. Aren’t you glad that the safe, electable guy, the one who was a sure thing with nothing in his history to upset anyone, lost the nomination?

  • Consumer Unit 5012

    Sigh.
    In the words of Scott Adams: “When did ignorance become a point of view?”

  • In the words of Scott Adams: “When did ignorance become a point of view?”
    I think it’s always been one. It just wasn’t as obvious in the past, since there was no willful ignorance to contend with regular ol’ nobody knows nothin’ ignorance…

  • Blackadder

    It really needed to be a southern Democratic governor, not a senator. Senators are handicapped when it comes to getting elected President, which is why it has only happened twice before (Kennedy and Harding); obviously this will be a third such occasion no matter what happens. Why are senators weak presidential candidates? It probably has something to do with the kind of pragmatic political deals senators have to routinely make, which leaves them open to charges of “waffling” and “flip-flopping” (I’m still waiting for a “Doubletalk Express” ad about McCain). Governors, on the other hand, can often afford to thumb their nose at a hostile legislature and stick to their principles, such as they are. Also governors can make the “executive experience” argument which is being used to laughably inflate Palin’s resume. Whatever the actual reason, many Presidents have been former governors and very few have been senators.
    It doesn’t really matter if Obama really is left of center – what matters is whether he’s perceived that way. He is, and it does hurt him, the same way that being perceived as a centrist or moderate helped Bill Clinton. If Democrats succeed in hanging a (definitely appropriate) right of center label on Palin it will hurt McCain in turn. The question is whether there is enough time left to do that. I’m just concerned that Obama didn’t quite make the sale during the convention period, and I’m not sure if he can turn things around on the strength of the debates alone. I hope so. McCain is doddering and has sold out his principles, and Palin will be a national disgrace and international laughingstock if the Republican ticket is elected.

  • Palin will be a national disgrace and international laughingstock if the Republican ticket is elected.
    In what respect, Charlie?

  • hapax

    I seriously thought about voting for the one candidate who would be the sure thing: a good looking white guy with a soothing Southern accent.
    I *did* vote for him, because I liked what he said about health care and poverty and economic development and the generally positive tone of his campaign. I don’t *think* racism or sexism played a role, although not being The Shadow, I don’t know what Evil Lurks in the Heart of Me…
    But yeah, after this past couple of months, I’m very glad he lost. (I don’t regret my vote, because honestly, I had no clue — I don’t think anybody did — that he was going to self-destruct so spectacularly and publicly).
    I still wish that Obama (or Clinton) weren’t running so hard for the center.

  • Blackadder

    If you find nothing embarrassing about Palin, I’m sure I can’t enlighten you, Geds. Suffice it to say I would not be using that characterization if McCain had chosen Kay Hutchinson or Libby Dole as his running mate.

  • If you find nothing embarrassing about Palin, I’m sure I can’t enlighten you, Geds.
    Way to miss the joke there…
    Suffice it to say there’s a reason I referred to you as “Charlie…”

  • Tonio

    I seriously thought about voting for the one candidate who would be the sure thing: a good looking white guy with a soothing Southern accent. Yes, I would be voting for him largely because of racism and sexism, but maybe I should be pragmatic instead of idealistic.
    Pragmatic in the short term, but unhealthy for American politics in the long term. That strategy doesn’t challenge the prejudices that would make such candidates sure things. Those prejudices are much more than racism or sexism. I’m not sure what you would call those prejudices as a group. The old word provincialism doesn’t seem to fit.

  • bulbul

    Blackadder,
    It doesn’t really matter if Obama really is left of center – what matters is whether he’s perceived that way.
    So first, he WAS überliberal and now he’s only PERCEIVED to be überliberal? Way to say on the message there, sport.
    And again I must ask you, perceived by whom?
    If Democrats succeed in hanging a (definitely appropriate) right of center label on Palin it will hurt McCain in turn.
    Where have you been last 8 years? Palin IS right of center, so right, in fact, that the only thing I can do to find her is follow the cash / moose blood trail.
    The problem is not with the narrative, because everybody knows what she stands for. The problem is that it doesn’t matter and that in the eyes of some, she is the female equivalent of the guy I want to have a beer with.
    For a while there, Hellsau was the official thread winner. Then Geds came out of nowhere. Sorry, Hellsau, gotta call it for Geds.

  • Em

    @Caravelle: Oh, and what should really be scary is her insistence that YOU SHOULD NEVER BLINK.
    True – on top of everything else, a Veep who’s scared of statuary would not be the best choice.
    Reference for them’s that missed my weak attempt at humor in the maelstrom: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blink_(Doctor_Who)

  • Cowboy Diva

    As for senators as weak candidates, I think it important to consider that in the recent campaign finance reform gyrations, governors were no longer able to transfer their campaign war chests from the state level to the national level; if they had a slush fund from years of working for a particular state’s interests, well, tough. However, because senator is a federal office, senators may roll any existing campaign funds into a presidential campaign. This effectively shuts out any state governor as a potential candidate for president, because they cannot hope to compete on the money scale; witness Richardson, or Romney who fronted millions of his own money but nothing from his state warchest.
    One guess who wrote the current campaign finance laws (specifically referring to Sec. 110.3 (c4) and (d), pages 172-173).
    I found this interesting too, from before he proposed the current law.
    Of course, he still managed to blow all his money this year, and is now receiving public funds.

  • Blackadder

    That’s a good point, Cowboy Diva. The changes in campaign finance laws may encourage more presidential candidates from the Senate. Certainly that was true this year.

  • Tonio

    The changes in campaign finance laws may encourage more presidential candidates from the Senate. Certainly that was true this year.
    I didn’t realize that the law would have that kind of impact. Carter, Reagan, Clinton, and GWB were all governors. Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon were all senators.

  • Cowboy Diva

    Tonio,
    Johnson and Truman both ascended to the presidency by way of the vice-presidency.
    Kennedy ascended to the presidency by way of Chicago (/snark).

  • Blackadder

    True, but only Kennedy and Harding were elected President while serving in the Senate. Most former senators who were elected President were vice president first (this was true of Nixon, Truman, and Johnson for example).

  • Kennedy ascended to the presidency by way of Chicago (/snark).
    And we’re damn proud of it, too. Word has it we’re trying to make the magic happen again.

  • Jeff

    Fine, Me => VandanaShiva now. She’s my personal hero, so it only makes sense. [Link to Wiki added]
    A literal tree-hugger — who knew? She does sound pretty cool.

  • Tonio

    True, but only Kennedy and Harding were elected President while serving in the Senate. Most former senators who were elected President were vice president first (this was true of Nixon, Truman, and Johnson for example).
    Valid point. I wasn’t making that distinction because the senatorial experience was a factor in their selections as running mates. I was looking at the overall resume. How about the Presidents who had no gubernatorial or senatorial experience? Ford and Bush 41 served only in the House. Hoover, Taft, and Eisenhower had never held elected office.

  • Blackadder

    Just for the heck of it I compiled a list of what each President was doing politically when he was elected, or what his most important former office had been if he wasn’t doing anything in particular at the time of his election. Of course a lot of them were also local, state, and/or national legislators in addition to what I’ve listed:
    Vice president – J. Adams, Jefferson, Van Buren, Fillmore, A. Johnson, Arthur, Coolidge, Truman, L. Johnson, Nixon, Ford, G. H. Bush
    Cabinet secretary or ambassador – Madison, Monroe, J. Q. Adams, Buchanan, Taft, Hoover
    General – Washington, Jackson, Taylor, Grant, Eisenhower
    Governor – W.H. Harrison, Tyler, Polk, Hayes, Cleveland, McKinley, T. Roosevelt, Wilson, F. Roosevelt, Carter, Reagan, Clinton, G. W. Bush
    Former congressman – Pierce, Lincoln, B. Harrison
    Sitting congressman – Garfield, Harding, Kennedy
    I lumped Garfield, who was a member of the House, in with the two Senators for a total of three sitting congressmen elected President. Each died in office during his first term. (Coincidence? Probably.) Three former congressmen who held no other important offices have also been elected. By a wide margin VP’s and governors have been favored for the office of President. Interestingly all Presidents have held some previous elected or appointed position. I didn’t realize so many Presidents were former cabinet secretaries though!

  • Tonio

    Blackadder, good list. If one focused only on the Presidents who were VP, what would the list look like?

  • Blackadder

    Vice Presidents who Became President
    J. Adams – Washington’s VP, elected President in 1796, lost 1800 election to his own VP
    Jefferson – J. Adams’ VP, elected President in 1800 and 1804
    Van Buren – Jackson’s second VP, elected President in 1836, lost 1840 election
    Fillmore – Taylor’s VP, became President when Taylor died in office 1850, not nominated for 1852 election
    A. Johnson – Lincoln’s second VP, became President when Lincoln assassinated 1865, impeached but not convicted 1868, not nominated for 1868 election
    Arthur – Garfield’s VP, became President when Garfield assassinated 1881, not nominated for 1884 election
    Coolidge – Harding’s VP, became President when Harding died in office 1923, elected President in 1924
    Truman – FDR’s last VP, became President when FDR died in office 1945, elected President in 1948
    L. Johnson – JFK’s VP, became President when JFK died in office 1963, elected President in 1964, did not seek nomination in 1968 election
    Nixon – Eisenhower’s VP (1953-1961), elected President in 1968 and 1972, resigned office in 1974
    Ford – Appointed VP by Nixon in 1973 following Agnew resignation, became President when Nixon resigned in 1974, lost 1976 election
    G.H. Bush – Reagan’s VP, elected President in 1988, lost 1992 election
    So a total of 12 VP’s have become President. More than half (7) first became President when the former President died, and of these four were not re-elected as President. Ford was not elected to either office. Of those former VP’s who were elected President, only Jefferson served two full terms. Nixon was the only VP who failed to succeed the President but later won election. So being VP is a mixed blessing when it comes to getting elected and serving as President; no former VP from Van Buren to Nixon became President except when the former President died.

  • Tonio

    So being VP is a mixed blessing when it comes to getting elected and serving as President; no former VP from Van Buren to Nixon became President except when the former President died.
    Excellent post. I was curious about the group’s resumes, particularly how they compare with the others who ascended directly to the presidency.

  • J

    I love how the Fundamentalists’ “worldview” rhetoric turns into post-modernism when discussions shift to science.
    I have noticed the same thing. There’s a strange rotation in the wheel-of-Tao going on right now where religious people are getting more and more invocative (sic?) of ‘worldview’ and similar postmodern riffs when defending their way of seeing the world and secular folk are getting more comfortable arguing fact. I like this change a lot and I attribute it to the fact that conservatives have watched their supposedly hard-and-factual ‘worldview’ get run over like a frog under a humvee by reality. It’s increasingly pointless for them to muster logical arguments in favor of policies that demonstrably don’t work: Conservative foreign policy doesn’t work. Conservative economic policy doesn’t work. Conservative health policy doesn’t work. Conservative science doesn’t work. Conservative sex ed policy REALLY doesn’t work.
    None of this means they’ll be losing elections, mind you. Elections are not about issues and they never will be. I thought we’d learned that by now: Smiling, rich, religious people can and do win all the time, no matter how badly mugged by reality.

  • Ryan Ferneau

    Don’t forget: If a policy doesn’t work, you can argue that it has a very delayed effect and we just need to keep on doing it longer. That prosperity in the nineties? Merely lingering effects of Reaganomics. Facing a depression now? Clinton must have set that up.

  • Although it’s easy to say in retrospect that Bill Clinton was a sure thing, it certainly wasn’t so clear at the time. He was attacked by the GOP for being inexperienced and excessively liberal–basically the same cards that get played every four years, and are getting played now against Obama. And although it’s very risky for the Dems to go with two candidates from non-battleground states this year, picking a blue guy from a red state doesn’t always work. Al Gore came from the Deep South and was the sitting Vice-President, and he didn’t win.
    Or, okay, he did, but he didn’t get to be President, now, did he?

  • Brad

    Amaryllis: Repeat to self: Sarah Palin is a distraction. It’s John McCain who’s running– concentrate on defeating him.
    I agree with you in principle, but you have to admit McCain’s age and health lend more importance to his choice of V.P. It’s kind of a circular argument – we can’t talk about how awful Sarah McCain is, because it detracts from McCain, and we know how awful McCain is, because he picked Sarah Palin, and we know how awful Sarah Palin is, or we would if we could talk about her.
    But hey, wasn’t Tina Fey great? ;)

  • I love how the Fundamentalists’ “worldview” rhetoric turns into post-modernism when discussions shift to science.
    History, too. Pick up one of those Politically Incorrect Guides sometime and leaf through it. I looked through the one on western civilization over the weekend and couldn’t stand the blatant lies.

  • Amaryllis

    Brad: we can, and I’m sure we will, talk about Sarah Palin all we want. It is indeed horrifying to think of a possible Palin presidency. And no wonder McCain spends so much public time with his 96-year-old, apparently strong and healthy, mother– see, 72’s not so old! But I just wish the Democrats would spend more time getting their own message across a little better.
    Meanwhile, I was writing a report yesterday where I frequently needed to use the word “plain.” And every time I typed it, it came out “palin.” Very annoying.

  • J

    Pick up one of those Politically Incorrect Guides sometime and leaf through it. I looked through the one on western civilization over the weekend and couldn’t stand the blatant lies.
    I was at the bookstore on Sunday and saw three copies (!) of the “Politically Incorrect Guide to Intelligent Design” shelved in “Science”. I calmed pulled them off the shelf, walked across the store and placed them in “Christian Fiction”.

  • great read/accompanying video. thanks for posting this.

  • Tonio

    I love how the Fundamentalists’ “worldview” rhetoric turns into post-modernism when discussions shift to science.
    I must lack the philosophy gene – I looked up the Wikipedia definition of postmodernism and I didn’t understand it. It seemed to define the concept by what it isn’t.
    religious people are getting more and more invocative (sic?) of ‘worldview’ and similar postmodern riffs when defending their way of seeing the world and secular folk are getting more comfortable arguing fact.
    There may have been a time when religious people focused less on worldview and more on fact. Was this the case? As a matter of principle, fact should take precedence over worldview, since the latter amounts to a filter on reality.
    I calmed pulled them off the shelf, walked across the store and placed them in “Christian Fiction”.
    That wouldn’t have occurred to me – I would have placed them in the general Religion section. Most bookstores I’ve visited place such books in that section.

  • It seemed to define the concept by what it isn’t.
    Well…
    Considering the fact that po-mo is, as much as anything, a reaction to modernity, that does tend to be the way it gets defined.
    There may have been a time when religious people focused less on worldview and more on fact. Was this the case?
    Start with Thomas Aquinas and the Summa Theologica. There was a long period of time when the Christian idea of the cosmos was considered to be the central universal fact. The main problem we’re seeing now is that science has progressed to a point — both in terms of capability and acceptability — that it is able to compete with and beat Christianity on its own terms. So we see two reactions. One is the completely insane Intelligent Design/6000 year-old universe thing and the other is the separate worldview thing.
    The problem is, if done right, the separate worldview thing can work. It’s like I once heard a Rabbi say, (paraphrase) “The Bible is the only the final word on the Law. So the Bible said the universe is 6000 years old, then science came along and said it isn’t. We looked at that and said, ‘so now we know.'”
    Of course that sort of thing just begs for relativism and independent inquiry and rejection of authoritarian figures, so we can’t have that…