Recently Mike Vanderboegh posted on Marines singing the hymn “These are the days of Elijah.” It was meaningful for me, and I appreciate the post. Drop by and watch it. It’s worth the time.
But then something happened to detract from and destroy the main theme of Mike’s post. Commenters, one named anonymous (what mother would name her son such a name as that?) and Dan III posted comments as follows.
Anonymous – I don’t understand how anyone, especially someone who considers himself a Christian, could justify joining the US military today. The US military DOES NOT defend freedom or the Constitution. The military serves the domestic enemies of the Constitution, meaning the US government — a lying, murderous, tyrannical entity that destroys freedom around the world … No, there’s no Christianity there. The US government is the Father of Lies. That’s whom these soldiers are serving, whether they know it or not.
Dan III – I ask myself why conservatives continue to worship at the altar of Allen West. This is the former US Army colonel who took an oath to defend the Constitution, and turned right around and thumbed his nose at his oath and fellow Americans, when he voted for the Patriot Act renewal. Good ol’ Allen West, the guy who helped to continue the desecration of our 4th & 5th Amendment Rights. This is the problem with those who consider themselves Patriots, conservatives, keepers of the Constitution. You continue to support the very people who throw us under the proverbial bus. Myself, I wouldn’t urinate down West’s throat if his lungs were on fire.
This caused Mike to respond as follows.
I don’t worship at AW’s altar. There are many things I disagree with him on. I don’t endorse foreign wars, especially those fought for no purpose. My son has been labeled “a storm trooper in the U.S. Army” and I have been called “psychotic” for supporting his service. I would like to point out that there were many Founders who weren’t necessarily thrilled about participating in British imperialism’s war against the French. There were also many Irishmen who took advantage of service in the British Army in World War I to get access to military training and weapons that they later put to good use in the Irish war of independence. Did the Founders “endorse” the British Empire? Did Tom Barry “endorse” the British army he served in? I posted the video because I liked to see Marines singing Christian hymns with gusto. If you don’t like it, you’re more than welcome to ignore what I post.
I have also seen a number of ridiculous comments on other gun rights / prepper / patriot web sites (which will not be named here), and it’s time to address some of them. When I was a young man I too was consumed with ideological purity, worrying over minutia in theology when it comes to worship and church membership, as one example. I was part of a church which took the view of “us four and no more,” so to speak. But then I matured and grew up. You can take things like this to the point of silliness and isolation from everyone else, rendering yourself and your views completely ineffective and your family without friends or tribe and without commitment from relatively like minded folk.
To be sure, we must all settle on unassailable absolutes from which there is no retreat and over which we will not compromise, such as gun rights, no universal background checks, no national gun registry, limited government, and so on. But the purity reaches a point of diminishing returns, and it behooves wise men to find that point. These commenters are no wise men.
Now to the content of their comments, and content of some of the other comments I’ve seen on other sites. I realize that I am risking a sweeping judgment that goes too far and thus levels charges that may not be accurate towards some people. I apologize up front for that, but I don’t know any other way to do this. So with that said, let’s take an ugly trek through some of the more ridiculous notions that seem to be in favor in these circles.
The CIA didn’t blow up the WTC. If you are a registered professional engineer like I am, within days of the WTC collapse your in-box was full of e-mails with attachments from professors of engineering outlining what happened, with calculations to prove it. We know what the failures were. We know how the structure was designed. And within a few months I received a comprehensive study from the American Society of Civil Engineers with a complete failure analysis of the structure, with parts numbered and analyzed while sitting in their waste yard, forensic analysis, pictures and all.
When you traffic in ridiculous conspiracy theories, you embarrass yourself and your colleagues, even if you are too stupid to know it. Stop. No, really, I mean it. Stop. Just don’t do it any more.
Sandy Hook was perpetrated by an evil kid. ISIS isn’t the CIA, and the American government didn’t create ISIS for the purpose of helping to create “greater Israel.” Hell, Israel doesn’t even want “greater Israel” and wouldn’t abide their PM doing what’s necessary to bring such a thing into being.
The Jew bankers do plenty of evil things, but they didn’t cause the Ukraine to go to war against Russia. That conflict isn’t a CIA plot to do whatever you think they want to do. That conflict was caused by a homoerotic, shirtless megalomaniac named Putin who wants to recreate the Soviet Union. Got it?
The Jew bankers do plenty of evil things just like the U.S. government, but they don’t cause all wars. They don’t even control the world’s money like they think they do. The uncontrollable monster of Keynesian economics and fractional reserve banking will destroy itself with our without the bankers. When the bankers don’t have clean water, guns and ammunition, they will be no better off that anyone else who didn’t prepare.
As to Mike’s comments back to Dan III, some foreign wars are evil and to be avoided. Not all foreign wars are evil. Most republicans are in bed with the statists. Not all republicans are in bed with the statists. There are bad people in the U.S. military. There are good people in the U.S. military. The U.S. military has done many good things. The U.S. military has done some bad things. I have done some good things, and some bad things.
Folks, learn to read the signs of the times and to “rightly divide” words and ideas. If you don’t you will forever be wildly thrown around by the winds of opinion. Be able to form your own opinions, and don’t listen to every passerby who has another conspiracy theory. And don’t exaggerate or use hyperbole.
Look what has happened to anonymous. To him, the U.S. government has done nothing but destroy freedom around the world (a manifestly and demonstrably false assertion), and is the “father of lies.” He has supplanted the title of the devil, who God calls the father of lies, with the U.S. government. I cannot imagine a more ridiculous, outlandish, off the charts stupid assertion. When you are rewriting Scripture for God, your ego is writing checks that your body and mind can’t cash. You are also risking blasphemy. I advise extreme caution. God is not to be taken lightly.
As for Dan III, look what his “purity” has caused. He wouldn’t “urinate down West’s throat if his lungs were on fire.” And thus if I ever meet him I will have one hand on my weapon. I don’t trust him, he has no ability to overlook anything with which he disagrees, and is quite literally willing to watch others perish over things that aren’t primary.
Learn to distinguish between those issues that are primary, the ones which are secondary, and those which are tertiary. And learn to forgive. Perhaps West would advocate differently concerning the patriot act today, but in any case, I have never heard him advocate gun control and have never heard anything from him but advocacy for small government. I also know that he was willing to sacrifice his military career for the safety of his men. Although my son was a Marine, I would have been honored to have my son serve with him any day.
To close, this isn’t much different than what Mike would say.
Look, for all the “Sandy Hook Conspiracy Theory” excrement clogging up my email inbox and the comments here, I can’t get anything done. Enough. Sell it to Alex Jones, he’s the disinformation artist. I will not use Sipsey Street to propagate self-discrediting crap when real issues are pressing. All emails regarding the subject, and all comments, have been and will be deleted. You can continue to shriek in all caps and call me names to your heart’s content, but you’re not hijacking this blog, or my limited time on this rock. Okay? That settles that.
And just to add to it, his commenter said this.
Here are some hard facts that some folks can’t seem to come to grips with:
If you believe the Apollo missions to the moon were staged, you are an incurable f****** dumbass.
If you believe Israel and the US Government deliberately blew up the World Trade Center on 9/11, you are an incurable f****** dumbass.
Though the current leadership of our government is undeniably sleazy and corrupt, if you believe they would deliberately stage the murder of 20 elementary school children, you are an incurable f****** dumbass.
To all incurable dumbasses everywhere – your absurd bullshit theories have been heard by all. Now, please, shut the fuck up and let the adults who don’t hear voices in their head have a serious conversation.
Yea, pretty much. Folks, learn nuance. In general, learn to say “yes, no and maybe, and it depends upon a whole host of things, and this requires a long conversation, and I have to render caveats and qualifications to what I’m saying.” It wasn’t too long ago (around the time of the war between the states) that men were required to take courses in rhetoric and logic. Sit down with a textbook in logic and read it. Start with the schoolboy primer in logic written by Isaac Watts. Learn verbal oratory for your conversations with others, and learn the science and art of persuasion for your commenting. Don’t unzip your fly and whiz in people’s faces and try to piss them off. It will go better for you, and you will be more effective.
Contribute in the comments rather than detracting from the theme. Offer up thanks to the web site hosts for the work they do. Do you understand how hard it is and the long hours necessary to find good, quality information and offer up decent analysis of it in a world where the MSM doesn’t care any more? Do you understand how tiring and wearisome this is? Do you know how hard it is to avoid typographical errors when you post every day? Kurt Hofmann and I have had this conversation, and Kurt told me his worst was when he had an error right in the title. I didn’t tell Kurt that I had that too, on more than one occasion.
In short, grow up. Put your hand over your mouth (or keyboard), think, and for some, pray, and contemplate whether what you’re about to write is meaningful, helpful and a worthy contribution. Offer up a thank you every now and again. Don’t pollute the internet with crap, don’t exaggerate, don’t traffic in conspiracy theories, and don’t rewrite the Scriptures. Mike is nicer than I am, and he responded in a kind fashion to Dan III. I have long since ran Dan III off from my blog. I’m not as nice as Mike.