It’s easy if you try

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“If you had to quickly flee both your home and country, what one possession would you make sure you take with you?”

“If you want an easy life, indulge yourself in despair.”

“It’s also a wildly presumptuous leap to project my own apathy onto God.”

“Be anything you like, be madmen, drunks, and bastards of every shape and form, but at all costs avoid one thing: success.”

“People mainly leave the church for one of two reasons: it’s either the assholes or the problem of suffering.”

Motivational Megafauna (click through for more encouragement from the extinct).

“The real question is, what does ‘Jesus’ symbolize?

“The universe appears to be slightly lopsided, and even rather cold in one part.”

Dinosaurs are changing so fast that the monstrous creatures we imagine in our youth become strangers as scientific discovery continues to tweak what we know about them.”

“The apparent apathy of the public and the enthusiasm of government has allowed sites like Facebook to get away with degrees of surveillance that are increasingly Orwellian.”

“Let’s get out of Afganistan, and stop making up wars to fight.”

“Imagine if Germany had a society in which Jewish citizens were imprisoned twice as frequently and then disproportionately executed.”

“You were on the wrong side of legality, morality and history, and lost. Get the f— over it, and be thankful you got representation in our government again so soon after violently rebelling against it.”

“I can’t really remember the last time I saw a public figure do something racist and say, ‘Yes. I am racist. I am sorry and I intend to do something about it.’”

I’m Your Basic, Small-Government, Obama-Is-the-Antichrist Conservative

“And don’t worry. You’ll get your turn in the center ring. You can count on that.” (via Jay Lake)

Things We Do Not Say in Outlook

Church Sign Epic Fails: ‘Old Testament Sex’”

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    It’s a tribal marker. Opposition to programs not found in the constitution makes him more clearly identifiable with the “constitutionalist” tribe.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    [citation needed].

  • EllieMurasaki

    By that logic, ‘all men are created equal’ refers only to straight cisgender white men, since that’s the only kind Thomas Jefferson was thinking of.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    The Declaration of Independence is a declaration of independence, not a law.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Mm-hm. “Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.”

    Also “The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States”.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    How does helping Africans “provide for the general Welfare of the United States”? Indeed, it can be argued that helping Africans hurts the “general Welfare of the United States” by potentially helping to further the destruction of American jobs.

  • EllieMurasaki

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam
  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Would you like to clarify your statement before we all taken it as a given that you just declared that helping Africans not catch AIDS is bad for America because job competition?

  • Lori

    For the record, I think the former is true, but for the sake of answering your question I’ll go with the idea that he is not a racist, he just presented himself as a racist in order to get money from racists.

    Setting aside that fact that such behavior makes him a liar, you honestly don’t see how a willingness to stoop that low for money might effect his behavior in office? You don’t think that a man who would metaphorically fellate racists for money would pander to other unscrupulous people when he has more power and therefore more people willing to throw cash at him for that pandering? We have enough problems with influence peddling with presidents who never stooped as low as Paul did. How does that translate to Paul being the last honest man once he moves into 1600 Pennsylvania Ave?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Thanks for the references. This doesn’t mean Paul was supportive of death camps or opposed to any action to save the Jews in WWII. As Bastiat said,

    As a result of this, every time we object to a thing being done by
    government, the socialists conclude that we object to its being done at
    all.

    Note: I am not calling you a socialist, though I am saying you are perpetuating a logical fallacy once used by socialists.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Because there’s only one world, and we are all connected and lines on maps only exist on maps.

    Helping others doesn’t “further the destruction of American jobs”, helping others doesn’t hurt us. Helping others is a kind of selfishness unless you’re a short-sighted moron. Every person in africa who benefits from US foreign aid is on the way to becoming a new customer for US-made products, whereas every country that suffers in poverty and privation for want of foreign aid becomes a hotbed for anti-american sentiment.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Yes. I do not view job loss as a bad thing in and of itself. Rather, I think each nation should specialize in its own areas of comparative advantage. Foreigners would not be hurting us if they gave us their goods for free, as real incomes would be raised. Rather, these hypothetical foreigners would force the U.S. economy to greatly re-adjust. However, though the absolute prosperity of Americans would be raised if other regions of the world accelerated economic development, America’s relative importance in the world would decline. As I have not done thorough research in this area, I cannot be sure whether America’s relative importance in the world is more important than its absolute prosperity, though I suspect the latter is more important.

    Also, helping fight AIDS in Africa may be helpful in reducing the spread of AIDS at home, as AIDS is a contagious disease that can be spread by African visitors or immigrants.

    In short, though “it can be argued that helping Africans hurts the “general Welfare of the United States” by potentially helping to further the destruction of American jobs”, I do not think “it can be argued” well.

    I deny that the General Welfare clause should be a justification of every act of Federal spending; rather, I think it should be interpreted in light of the list of Congressional powers in Section 8.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Right, so Ron Paul didn’t want Hitler to win the war, he just wanted private business to fight against fascism instead of the US.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Helping others doesn’t “further the destruction of American jobs”,

    Yeah, it does. Look at Detroit.

    helping others doesn’t hurt us.

    -Agreed.

    Every person in africa who benefits from US foreign aid is on the way to becoming a new customer for US-made products,

    -Not necessarily. I don’t see why that person would not be on the way to becoming a new customer for Japan-made products or China-made products or Nicaragua-made products, rather than American-made products.

    whereas every country that suffers in poverty and privation for want of foreign aid becomes a hotbed for anti-american sentiment.

    -Perhaps, but [citation needed], nevertheless.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Apparently.

  • Lori

    When the inevitable outcome of your preferred course of action is that Hitler wins the war there is no meaningful distinction between those preferences and wanting Hitler to win the war.

    Never mind that, our current contractor addiction aside, war is not supposed to be the job of the private sector. The entire idea is just mind-boggling.

  • P J Evans

    So poverty is good, as long as it’s foreigners who are poor?
    War is good, as long as we win and it’s fought somewhere out of sight, and the heck with the people who get in the way?

  • EllieMurasaki

    Debt: The First 5,000 Years argues that it’s NECESSARY to capitalism that most folk be poor.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    I’m sorry, which third-world country destroyed the US auto industry due to US foreign aid again?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    I’m sorry, where did I ever say that a third-world country destroyed the US auto industry due to US foreign aid again?

  • http://www.facebook.com/dpolicar David Policar

    I suspect Ross was responding to

    Helping others doesn’t “further the destruction of American jobs”,

    Yeah, it does. Look at Detroit.

    …and was understanding “helping others” in this context to refer to providing foreign aid to third-world countries, and “Detroit” to refer to the US auto industry.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    In fairness, this clinic actually is one of the few in the area which provides abortion services. It is small, discrete and at the end of a long driveway off the main street, with no signs advertising what kind of services it offers, people go there on referral when they consult a doctor.

    If they wanted to protest something more obvious, we have a fairly large and obvious Planned Parenthood clinic closer to the more densely populated areas of Seattle than this small facility here in a suburb.

  • The_L1985

    “no one who believes in them is taken seriously”

    Hi! Neo-Pagan schoolteacher. Thank you for ridding me of the delusion that I am taken seriously. ^_^

  • The_L1985

    What makes a person noteworthy, then? Surely I am noteworthy to my students (gods willing).

  • The_L1985

    ….I am a neo-Pagan mathematics teacher. Please explain how teaching a logical system such as mathematics fails to prevent me from being an “enemy of reason,” because I take umbrage to that particular comment.

  • The_L1985

    The guy who thought a fence across the entire U.S.-Mexico border was possible, let alone a good idea; made no attempt to stop racist material from being published in a newsletter with his name on it; and thinks that the gold standard is possible to return to at this point, has too much integrity?

    Is that really the word you want to use?

  • The_L1985

    Does the word “bribery” exist in your vocabulary?

  • The_L1985

    Not even mistaken–the “Brontosaurus” skull came from a site several miles away from the rest of the skeleton, and somehow it took 25 years for anyone to find that suspicious.

  • Magic_Cracker

    Yeah, as far as inspirational songs go, I much prefer, say, “Working Class Hero” to “Imagine.”

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Yes, though I don’t think it’s relevant in this context. Paul has not been known to have been bribed by anyone, as far as I know.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    1. Three/four words: Great Walls of China
    2. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivist/2013/04/12/its-easy-if-you-try/#comment-863642188
    3. Why not try to return to the gold standard?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Nice argument from authority there. [facepalm]. Take all the umbrage you wish, just don’t try to use a blatant logical fallacy on me.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    A person becomes noteworthy by being mentioned numerous times by national newspapers and by having his/her name spoken in at least a quarter of America’s households.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    That was an implied “taken seriously in the relevant matters by the general public”.

  • P J Evans

    The Great Walls didn’t prevent China being invaded, and going back to the gold standard isn’t possible.
    Have you ever considered using the space between your ears for something more useful than right-wing talking points?

  • P J Evans

    That’s YOUR standard. It isn’t the only one available.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dpolicar David Policar

    There are lots of beliefs people assert or adopt without evidence or in defiance of available evidence. I live in Boston and know many people who assert that the Red Sox are the best baseball team ever, for example, despite having no significant evidence for that claim.

    In principle, all such assertions mark one as an outsider to the rationalist tribe. That said, religious beliefs are a particular shibboleth (or, I suppose, sibbolet) for a particular subset of that tribe, which mark one as an outsider in a particularly salient way.

    It’s not hard for a particular kind of mind to go from “salient outsider to my tribe” to “enemy of my tribe” to “enemy of the universal principle through which my tribe defines itself.” Humans have been doing this for a long, long time.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dpolicar David Policar

    If you chose to interpret it as the articulation of salient evidence rather than an argument from authority, would you still consider this a rational reply?

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    The Great Walls didn’t prevent China being invaded

    -True, but they were built.

    and going back to the gold standard isn’t possible.

    -Elaborate, please.

    Have you ever considered using the space between your ears for something more useful than right-wing talking points?

    -Why yes, Mr. Evans, I have, if you haven’t noticed.
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivist/2013/03/25/michele-bachmann-rick-warren-telling-lies-for-jesus-that-hurt-poor-women/#comment-842006800
    http://chronicle.com/article/Egyptologist-Fuels/138457/
    -Also, see my blog.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Yes, but it was my comment, so it’s my standard that counts.

  • Carstonio

    And here I was thinking that such outrage was merely a gag from “WKRP in Cincinnati.” A Falwell-style preacher accuses the station of playing obscene music and he drags out “Imagine,” accusing the lyrics of being not only anti-Christian but also communist.

  • The_L1985

    Er…why does Wal-Mart need to keep expanding? It’s in damn-near every town in the US, it earns more than the GDP of several small countries every year, and it deliberately pays its average worker so little money that government assistance is necessary for these people to afford to eat.

    Wal-Mart accepts food stamps, though, so Wal-Mart workers can spend their food stamps at work, thus causing the US government to indirectly provide welfare to Wal-Mart. Even though Wal-Mart can easily afford to pay its employees a living wage without losing any business.

  • The_L1985

    1. And both the Great Wall of China and the later Berlin Wall failed miserably at their goal of preventing people from crossing the wall. It’s pretty clear by now that walls and fences of that size aren’t any good at keeping people in or out. Thus, it is a very bad idea to even suggest a wall across the US-Mexico border.

    2. OK, so what about the fact that Ron Paul defended those racist writings in the 90′s? Are we just going to forget that ever happened?

    3. Because US currency hasn’t been based on gold for far too long, and enough countries base their own currency on the US dollar that an attempt to return to the gold standard would result in global financial chaos.

  • The_L1985

    So, Kim Kardashian is more important than the prime minister of Germany, because she’s spoken about by more Americans. Gotcha.

  • The_L1985

    No, “brontosaurus” was actually “something Marsh tried to claim as a different species by putting the wrong head on an Apatosaurus.” Brontosaurus is a distinct species that never actually existed; no sauropod with that particular head had that particular body.

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/sideshow/brontosaurus-never-existed-tale-bone-wars-185524946.html (Gets it backwards, because it’s Yahoo, but the Cope/Marsh “bone wars” are pretty-well documented.)

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    an attempt to return to the gold standard would result in global financial chaos.

    -That may be a good reason.
    2. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/slacktivist/2013/04/12/its-easy-if-you-try/#comment-863520792

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    Notice what I said in my original comment: “‘Cause nobody of note worships these beings in civilized English-speaking countries.” (changed from “civilized English-speaking society”).
    Thus, “noteworthy” in my comment refers to being noteworthy in civilized English-speaking countries.

  • http://againstjebelallawz.wordpress.com/ Enopoletus Harding

    This is why I oppose the existence of food stamps.

  • EllieMurasaki

    How do you propose to ensure that everyone is fed in a world without food stamps?


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