Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Pluralism and Interfaith Consciousness? Or THE TRUTH!

In the comment thread section of my previous post, "Anonymous" came along and wrote the following:

Anonymous said...
Eboo Patel's placement is no accident. He has direct ties with the Tony Blair Faith Foundation and Rick Warren. Patel is founder and Executive Director of the Interfaith Youth Core, a Chicago-based institution building the GLOBAL interfaith youth movement.


Now check over
http://interfaith2010.naz.edu/
Notice again Obama's Eboo Patel who sits on his Advisory Council of the White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. Eboo is working to realize the President's priority of interfaith cooperation.(coming in through faith-based initiatives and youth community service) Listed speakers have all the connects. There is BeliefNet , owned by Rupert Murdoch. TED talks and-the (New Ager) Karen Armstrong, Bill Gates (population control), Amy Gutmann (transgender sex change funding college), etc. the whole futurist platform. Mentioned also is the Charter for Compassion and The Clinton Global Initiative...How fast can you list the UN's Millennium Goals?

Last April's conference covered:

4/11 - "The Art of Dialogue: Interfaith Dialogue Across the Generations"
4/11 - "The Divine Feminine: The Foundation of the Abrahamic World"
4/12 - "Acts of Faith: Interfaith Leadership in a Time of Global Religious Crisis"

Listen to the words of Patel himself speaking at the radically left Tides Foundation(which features a Buddhist-type altar and hosts other environmental, spiritual, educational, and governmental organizations sharing a common crusade of building a unified, earth-friendly GLOBAL civilization based on "new" universal beliefs and values. Listen carefully to his diversity speech on "democracy and pluralism" and "interfaith consciousness."

http://www.momentumconference.org/speaker-presentation/speaker/eboo-patel/presentation/religious-pluralism-in-a-democracy/index.html

As the world quickly moves towards the one world religion and interspirituality decide for whom you will serve. Our youth are being seduced away. Have you warned them to beware? How many are in God's word to discern truth and error? Who will stand fast for Jesus Christ, LORD and Savior?

Ephesians 5:6-11

July 27, 2010 12:38:00 PM PDT


If you visit those links, you will find out much more information about Eboo Patel and his involvement with the Obama Administration's Advisory Council of the White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

In response to Anonymous's post and links I wrote:

Christinewjc said...
Checked this one out: http://interfaith2010.naz.edu/
and the symbols of different religions in the avatar at the top of the page reminds me of the "coexist" symbols I have seen on cars. The word starts with the symbol of Islam (crescent and star) for the "c" in coexist, and ends with the "t" for the cross at the end of the word. Hmmm...kinda shows which one is valued more - doesn't it? The letters in between represent other religions.

I know. Non-Christians who often post here and hate my religious beliefs of Biblical Christianity will surmise that I'm intolerant - or worse. Well - Jesus was certainly intolerant and CLEAR when he said:

Jhn 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

People can be namby-pamby about religion all they want. But the truth is - not all religions can possibly be correct. That's the truth of the matter! The "can't we just all get along" ideology doesn't work when it comes to the decision on faith and salvation.

Jesus asks each of us, "Who do you say that I am?" Each of those other religions could only answer that he is a "good teacher," or "a great prophet," or "a good man" etc. In order to believe in an interfaith type of gobbledy-gook. Are you thinking what's so wrong with that? I will tell you. They will lead people astray! They would need to leave out what Peter (correctly) answered:

Mat 16:16 Simon Peter answered and said, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."

Why?

Because if they did include that answer - then all of the other religions would be proven false!

God is not a God of confusion! He gave us His Written Word - the Bible, and His Living Word - Jesus Christ and I believe that Jesus is who He says He is! The Holy Spirit of God brings back to our minds what God has told us in His Word - and leads us into all understanding of the Scriptures. Those who are born-again in Christ will not be fooled by those who preach a different gospel - a false gospel which only leads the hearer into spiritual oblivion.

We were warned that the closer we get to the end times, there will be:

Mat 24:24 "For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.

You will notice that "the elect" WON'T be deceived! And we aren't deceived by groups like the one at that link!

July 27, 2010 3:55:00 PM PDT

Apparently, Kevin didn't like my response and he wrote:

Kevin said...
Hi Christine,
You state: "Hmmm...kinda shows which one is valued more - doesn't it?"
Actually Christine, being the first C in the word Coexist does not mean that the religion is more important! It is a symbol of all the religious symbols and the hope that we can all get along without killing each other. There is no conspiracy theory here.
Wouldn't it be nice if all the various religious would just let people make up their own mind which religion they wanted to follow? Just think how many lives would be saved if we stopped fighting over that.

July 27, 2010 5:26:00 PM PDT


So I replied:

Christinewjc said...
Kevin,

The various religions do already [have the opportunity] to all get along here in the U.S. But when one religion chops off the heads of the "infidels" and straps bombs to their bodies and blows themselves up at a Jewish wedding, market, or school; and when that same religion hijacks planes and crashes them into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and one that was aimed for either the White House or Congressional building but landed in a field in Pennsylvania because some brave passengers charged the cockpit and wouldn't let the radical Muslims carry out their evil deed; then the "wouldn't it be nice" mantra that you obviously believe in doesn't recognize an evil religious belief when it is right before your very eyes!

People CAN make up their own minds which religion they want to follow in America. But just think how many lives would be saved if we stopped radical Islam from fighting their jihad and forcing their Sharia law and hard-core beliefs upon the world?

July 27, 2010 7:28:00 PM PDT

Kevin hasn't responded yet, but as I awoke this morning several verses came to my mind. I have expanded upon them here:


Isa 55:8 "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," says the LORD.

Isa 55:9 "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.

Although secular man values "pluralism" and "interfaith consciousness," the Lord God requires truth. Those two so-called values may sound nice to the ear, look pleasant to the eye, and satisfy the flesh, but they are worthless spiritually.

Earlier verses in Isaiah give those who have strayed from God through "pluralism" and "interfaith consciousness" the way of return:

Isa 55:6 Seek the LORD while He may be found, Call upon Him while He is near.


Isa 55:7 Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the LORD, And He will have mercy on him; And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon.

It is important to read all of Romans 1, however, for the purpose of this particular discussion, I have selected certain verses that can be applied here:

Rom 1:17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, "The just shall live by faith."


Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,


Rom 1:19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.


Rom 1:20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,


Rom 1:21 because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.


Rom 1:22 Professing to be wise, they became fools,


Rom 1:23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.

Rom 1:24 Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves,


Rom 1:25 who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.

The "pluralism" and "interfaith consciousness" is a form of "exchanging the truth of God for the lie." What the people who are doing this are actually accomplishing is "worship and serv[ing] the creature" [i.e. man, beast, idol (like the golden calf of the Old Testament), false prophets (Muhammad), false christs (eg. making Christ in their own image like the homosexual "bishop" Gene Robinson and other do)], etc.

In the following list of those who "God gave over to a debased mind" we see examples of those that could be applied to the ideas of religious pluralism and interfaith consciousness:

Rom 1:28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting;


Rom 1:29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, [fn] wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers,


Rom 1:30 backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,


Rom 1:31 undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, [fn] unmerciful;


Rom 1:32 who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.
[Note: Bold mine]

Oftentimes, people focus on the sins that aren't in bold. However, notice that according to the righteous judgment of God - those who practice any or all of those things are deserving of death. What's more, Paul mentions that "those who approve of those who practice them" are also deserving of death. This reiterates that all sin is punishable by death. That is why Jesus Christ's sacrifice on the cross at Calvary and subsequent resurrection from the dead is the ONLY way to be forgiven and reconciled back unto the Father.

These people can dance around their religious pluralism and interfaith consciousness, celebrating it in their own minds (just like the Israelites danced around the golden calf "god" of their own making while their leader out of captivity - Moses - was away receiving the Ten Commandments from God); but as the previous verses point out, "their thoughts are not God's thoughts."

Since every word of the Bible is for reproof and correction, those who would violate God's Word with their own humanistic wisdom are guilty of "exchanging the truth for the lie."

Notice that the word "the" is before the word "lie." What is the lie? Why, it's the same lie from old that Jesus warns us about time and time again in the Scriptures:

Jhn 8:44 "You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.

1Jo 2:4 He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

Hat Tip:

Blue Letter Bible

34 comments:

GMpilot said...

Is this a trick question, again?

Pluralistic beliefs don't have any better track record than monotheistic beliefs do. It just makes it a bit harder to rouse the masses into a kill-the-unbelievers frenzy. As for The TRUTH™...well, everybody claims they've got that.
Fact is, though, it's a very rare commodity, and anyone who boasts they've got it is probably lying.

Kevin said...

Hi Christine,
I was only commenting on the fact that the word Coexist starts with a C, and since the C is a symbol for a religion, that is why it is first. Maybe the word should be Toleration, and that way Christianity can be first (the T is the cross, and the symbol of Christianity)??? I imagine you wouldn't agree with that word...

It isn't that I didn't like your comment. I just thought that you were wrong, since I figured you misunderstood.
And who wouldn't want different religions to get along? Do you want that or not? There are radical factions in all religions. All you have to do is look at the mess that happened in Ireland not too long ago with the Catholics fighting the Protestants. The problem is that you have taken a radical agenda (and a very dangerous one, at that) and substituted that for an entire religion. It is like me stating that you believe and represent the very same violent Protestants in Ireland.

Kevin said...

Hi Christine,
You also state:
"However, notice that according to the righteous judgment of God - those who practice any or all of those things are deserving of death." How ironic that you would state this while complaining about a religion that wants death for those who do not follow certain precepts...Yes, I understand what this 'death' is, but here is a good example of your own religious belief that all people who do not believe are condemned. I don't see how this is any different from another religion which states that they are the only way (and have scriptures to prove it). That is the whole point of interfaith dialogue--to move away from violence between religions and to allow people to discuss these things without throwing around the words 'condemn' and 'death' to unbelievers. At least that is my own view of this.

Christinewjc said...

And I think you are wrong Kevin.

You claim to know what "death" I am describing. But then you ramble on - claiming I'm "complaining about a religion that wants death for those who do not follow certain precepts."

Whether you want to know it, or admit it - you have stated the obvious difference between Islam and Christianity. Islam wants death to the infidels (which includes both you and I). However, Christianity provides forgiveness and salvation through repentance - before natural death.

We all die physically. That is a fact of life. It is the result of sin entering into the world through man's inability to follow God's commandments.

Islam gets it's believers by force. Christianity offers believers redemption, mercy, grace and love through God's only provision - Jesus Christ - and His sacrifice on the cross for mankind's sins. Thus, Christ's shed blood and battered body took the punishment that we all deserved. He willingly went to the cross for our sakes - so that we can be reconciled unto God and live with Him when this brief life ends.

As far as your statement about "allow[ing] people to discuss these things without throwing around the words 'condemn' and 'death' to unbelievers" goes, I will share what the Bible has to say about that.

Jhn 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Kevin said...

Hi Christine,
As I said, interfaith dialogue exists so people don't have to run around condemning each other's beliefs. How is that all that different from Surah 8:14 "Thus (will it be said): "Taste ye then of the (punishment): for those who resist Allah, is the penalty of the Fire." Non-Christians are condemned in Christianity, and non-Muslims are condemned in Islam.

Sure, the Bible condemns people who don't believe, but which belief? Christianity is not a monolithic religion. Christians fight Christians. Christians fight other religions. I'll ask you again--are you a Protestant in the Irish-Protestant form? Or is is possible that there are some radical Christians in Christianity?

When one religion condemns the other, no good can come from it. And I expect any religion to get its followers to believe that other religions are wrong.

And are you certain Muslims want death to infidels? I've seen the quote you are referring to. Unfortunately when people spout that quote, they usually don't spout this quote (Surah
8:61) "But if the enemy incline towards peace, do thou (also) incline towards peace, and trust in Allah: for He is One that heareth and knoweth (all things)."

So there is proof, from the Islamic scriptures, that Islam can be peaceful. And I am peaceful towards those of the Islamic faith, so I expect them to be peaceful back.

And you are not totally understanding my posts. When I said you were wrong, it was about your original statement that Islam was more important in the Coexist symbol. The word Coexist starts with a C. A "C" is not a Christian symbol.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"So there is proof, from the Islamic scriptures, that Islam can be peaceful. And I am peaceful towards those of the Islamic faith, so I expect them to be peaceful back."

As usual, you misrepresent reality. To say that "Islam can be peaceful" is like saying "Socialism can provide a better world for everyone." If you stick to theory and leave human nature out of it, it could work. The problem is that it doesn't. Socialism in practice has always led to misery and poverty, same as Islam. Conversely, while Christians certainly have not attained perfection on Earth, and would indeed argue that it is impossible, they have achieved far more in promoting equality and prosperity than anything controlled by either Islamists or atheists.

"So there is proof, from the Islamic scriptures, that Islam can be peaceful. And I am peaceful towards those of the Islamic faith, so I expect them to be peaceful back."

Yes, you say this and you are incorrect. The best interfaith dialogue can provide is a measure of understanding. Whenever two mutually exclusive propositions collide, mutual condemnation is inevitable simply because at most only one is possible. That doesn't mean that violent conflict will inevitably result. Islamists simply prefer it that way. Your denial of the obvious is rather like Chamberlain insisting that Hitler wanted peace prior to WWII. He didn't. He wanted to get as much as he could without having to fight for it. Liberals like you were more than willing to give it to him.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

Now, to continue to demolish your illogical comparison of Islam to the conflict in Northern Ireland. While most of the time the media framed the conflict as Catholic vs. Protestant, it could have just as easily been framed as home rule or independence vs. British rule. While Catholics and protestants were killing each other, the issues that they were killing each other over were political, not religious. Unlike Muslim terrorists, neither side was moving to spread their vision of religion around the world. They weren't downing planes for "God's glory." They were blowing up strategic targets. While a condition of terror existed, it was to achieve political goals.

None of this makes the violence or tactics used in any way more acceptable. It simply clarifies that the cause was a political struggle with an incidental religious face. In Islam, the religion necessitates the conflict and perpetuates it. While Muslims are commanded to "kill, convert, or enslave", Christians are commanded to teach, to aid, to provide. Again, while not perfect, we manage this far better than Muslims, atheists, etc. To try to equate the Irish Conflict to the Islamist goals is rather like equating all atheists with Lenin and Stalin, willing to use all levels of violence to accomplish their tactics.

Kevin said...

Hi Gary,

You say: " If you stick to theory and leave human nature out of it, it could work." Tell me, then, which political theory works in the real world without human nature?

You say: "Yes, you say this and you are incorrect." Gary, did you read what I posted? Here, let me post some of it again: "(Surah
8:61) "But if the enemy incline towards peace, do thou (also) incline towards peace, and trust in Allah: for He is One that heareth and knoweth (all things)."

Just because you don't understand this doesn't make me incorrect. Sorry. Besides, here is a question you should ask yourself: what is the total population of Muslims in the world? And after answering that, now ask how many terrorist attacks have been carried out by Muslims? Now ask yourself how many Muslims took part in these terrorist attacks? When you figure out the answer, then ask yourself whether ALL Muslims are terrorists.

You say: "Your denial of the obvious is rather like Chamberlain insisting that Hitler wanted peace prior to WWII." No, it isn't obvious or correct. Some people want to fight when they don't know all the facts, and some people don't want to fight when they are ignorant of the facts. Chamberlain was ignorant of the facts, therefore he didn't fight. However, some don't know all the facts and state that all Muslims want to "kill, convert, or enslave" everyone. These people would rather fight than try to understand.

You don't understand why I brought up the Irish vs. the English, and I don't really feel like explaining it again. Read the post again.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"Chamberlain was ignorant of the facts, therefore he didn't fight."

No, he wasn't. The British, French, and American intelligence services had all of the facts necessary on Hitler and the
Nazi's to make an informed decision. He simply chose not to accept the obvious conclusion: Hitler was determined to conquer Europe and then beyond. Instead of facing that truth, he and his like-minded surrender-monkeys gave the Nazis Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Poland. France had a military advantage over Germany when they finally did decide to put up a defense, and still surrendered in six weeks because a generation of liberal types had told them that surrender and survival under dictatorship was worse than war, and that's the same rationale that liberals use with regards to Islam. Liberals like you defend it or equate it with Christianity even though they would gladly kill you as soon as look at you, but to admit the difference would mean that you would have make some kind of meaningful judgment.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"However, some don't know all the facts and state that all Muslims want to "kill, convert, or enslave" everyone. "

I don't know anyone who says that. I did point out, correctly, that is what their sacred texts demand.

"then ask yourself whether ALL Muslims are terrorists. "

Okay, I asked myself, and I answered "no."

Then I asked myself a more pertinent question: What percentage of terrorists acting for religious reasons are Muslims? The answer is an overwhelming majority. They also have a "moral code" which says it is perfectly fine for them to lie about their motives to promote Islam, meaning no given word of peace can be accepted.

"These people would rather fight than try to understand. "

Understanding is not an issue. Many people fully understand the goals and methods of radical Islam. Most liberals just deny the facts because if they accepted them they would be forced to either stand against the Muslims or confess their cowardice. Your choice is obvious. That you try to cloak your cowardice and dishonesty as a form of intellectualism is a shame, but hardly unique among liberals.

I understand your Irish vs. English fine. It's a miserable example that doesn't hold up under scrutiny. Of course you can't explain your way out of it, so you feign insult and withdraw as is typical of cowards. Why don't you just stick to lying to your class? I'm sure most of them would be afraid for their grade and not dare to contradict you. In an open forum of information and ideas, you are woefully underpowered.

Gary Baker said...

Christine,

It occurs to me that it's worthwhile to give a more elaborate rebuttal to Kevin's comments. They are so typical of the traits of liberal discourse these days, in that they rely so heavily on a mixture of dishonesty, ignorance, arrogance, and stupidity.

Take Kevin's comment "Chamberlain was ignorant of the facts, therefore he didn't fight."

The stupidity is obvious. The only real question is how much of this is ignorance and how much is dishonesty. Chamberlain was Prime Minister of England during much of the run up to the war. He had more access to information than anyone I can think of. In order to the argument that he didn't have adequate information, we have to accept that no one did. That's where the stupidity hits hard. Lots of other members of the government knew that war was brewing. Churchill was one of the most prominent later, but certainly not the only one. The heads of the labor party at the time knew all the data as well, and yet they kept pushing for pacifism while praising Stalin's "worker's paradise" from afar, even as he starved millions of Russians to quash dissent.

Remarkably, the same types of lies keep gaining acceptance. "Bush lied" for saying there were WMD's in Iraq, even though all of the Dem leaders said it as well, even though both Clinton's said it while Billy-Boy was president. All has disappeared down the liberal memory hole.

Thousands like Kevin claimed that Ronald Regan was going to push us into war because of his cowboy-like ways and failure to show sensitivity and understanding. Even after the Soviet union collapsed, they preferred to give credit to the Russian officials rather than admit that yes, Regan really did understand and that understanding brought the Soviets to their knees.

It is the eternal conceit of types like Kevin that any engagement with foreign powers that doesn't echo their ideas is no help at best and a tragic mistake at worst. They go on blithely ignoring that their stupidity on foreign policies does nothing but invite scorn and attack. The history is clear. They either deny it or ignore it, and steadfastly claim that they are the only ones that understand. How sad and pathetic.

Kevin said...

Gary,
You are so funny some times! Lying to my class??? Luckily my students are smarter than you, in that they can at least think on their own. They don't need someone to spoon feed them their answers.
I actively encourage my students to question me. See, you believe that corporal punishment and rote memorization is the way to education and this is exactly why you can't picture students questioning the teacher. I always get glowing reviews from my students--it is not because I scare them into not asking questions. It is because I am good and make sure that they are treated with respect and that I give them many opportunities to learn on their own.
And no, you STILL do not understand the Irish commment.

Nor do you understand what you say when you stated this: "Most liberals just deny the facts because if they accepted them they would be forced to either stand against the Muslims or confess their cowardice. Your choice is obvious." I fully understand how dangerous radical Islam is. I also fully understand how dangerous radical Christianity is as well. However, I am smart enough not to blame an entire religion for the idiocy of a few (even if the few are extremely dangerous).

For you, an 'open forum' is when everyone agrees with you. How boring. So much for an 'open forum'!

Christinewjc said...

GMPilot - The Bible is God's Word. It contains the truth without any mixture of error. The Bible reveals Jesus Christ as the true Messiah, Savior and Lord. Whether or not you (or anyone else - including me) chooses to believe it - is irrelevant to the fact. However, I do choose to believe it.

Gary, I understand your frustration. The liberal/progressive/agnostic/skeptic/pluralistic mind is incompatible with the conservative, biblically based Christian mind. It's just a fact of life. It seems to me that there it is very difficult for the liberal mind to recover from their chosen mindset.

There is one former liberal - that I know about - who posts over at the American Thinker blog. Her posts are quite eye opening, too!

The Bible is filled with verses that explain why the unbelievers minds are the way they are. It is described as an inability to discern truth from error - not because they aren't intelligent, but because they are spiritually discerned. It is described as the "reprobate mind." The main reason is that they live with unrepentance and in the realm of unconfessed sin.

I heard a great sermon on Turning Point today. It was about grace. At the beginning of the program, some actors did a skit about how they thought that calling oneself a "wretch like me" in the song "Amazing Grace" was too harsh. The illustration that was done was excellent! If you want to see it, go here and click on "Watch Now This Week's Broadcast."

The skit I mentioned starts at 11:40 into the video. I thought it was excellent! The entire sermon is terrific! I would encourage all to view it.

Anyway, didn't mean to get off topic. But I think that when non-believers think that Christians do not acknowledge their sins, it is because they do not understand the true gospel. They, (and even some nominal Christians) don't know how wretched we all are! They don't know what the terms "mercy," "grace," "atonement,"propitiation," really mean.

Kevin,

The reason why you don't understand why the man-made belief being presented by those who adhere to the term "coexist" is dangerous is because you obviously don't believe in the concept of absolute truth. I have shared explanations of this before, but I don't know if you have ever read them.

In the secular world, pluralism and collective salvation sound good to the ear. However, it is spiritually a deadly concept - expecially when we know that Jesus told us, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except by me."

As far as the comparison of Islam and Christianity is concerned, Muhammad is just a dead prophet. Jesus Christ is the Son of God, the risen Savior and Lord who is alive forevermore.

Who should we trust? A dead prophet or the Living Lord - Jesus Christ?

Kevin, I hope that you listen to the sermon at the link I posted. Would like your opinion on it.

Gary Baker said...

Hi Kevin,

"Luckily my students are smarter than you,"

Some probably are, but that does nothing to bolster support for the honesty of the instructor.

"they can at least think on their own."

I seem to recall a number of times giving you an "A to B" example of how your views on economics are wrong and asking you to do something similar. You never have shown the ability to do it. Who has been accepting spoon fed answers?

"I actively encourage my students to question me.

Which, of course, results in no improvement if they simply receive more lies, half-truths, and propaganda.

"See, you believe that corporal punishment and rote memorization is the way to education and this is exactly why you can't picture students questioning the teacher."

I can see you are as ignorant of an engineering education as you are of religion, politics, history, etc. I keep asking you questions in hope of receiving some type of intelligent response, or at least one that shows you have examined the issue. I hope in vain...

"I always get glowing reviews from my students--it is not because I scare them into not asking questions."

I've been reading Mr. Sowell's book on education in America recently. Apparently it's easy to get glowing reviews from your students. All you have to do is validate their feelings, no matter how ill-informed and undeserved.

"And no, you STILL do not understand the Irish commment."

Then by all means explain it in a way that makes sense. If you are such a great teacher, then surely you can explain something to a person who graduated Summa Cum Laude from engineering school.

"I also fully understand how dangerous radical Christianity is as well."

And yet you continue to equate a movement that kills thousands, sometimes many thousands, per year, puts out text books that call Christians and Jews "apes" and "pigs", sanctions stoning of women for the crime of being raped, with a few isolated churches that hold up signs that say "God Hates Homosexuals." I can see that, since both decry acceptance of sexual perversion, you would naturally see them both as the same.

Gary Baker said...

And no, Kevin, I don't expect everyone to agree on an open forum. You keep confusing me with a liberal. They are the ones conceited enough to believe that everyone will accept their view if you just sit down and talk about it. That must be because it worked so well for Chamberlain. And Obama. And when that doesn't work, then they begin planning things like "the fairness doctrine" and "community programming" and "reporting people who lie about health care" to stifle speech. Just like the good little fascists they all aspire to be.

Christinewjc said...

Gary,

I give you a lot of credit for continuing to try and get through to Kevin. Good luck with that!

BTW, which book were you recommending to me a while back? Was it Sowell's?

I am currently reading three books! Ahhh! But they are very different so it helps to pick up "The Road to Serfdom" (when I want to learn from history), or Dr. Jeremiah's book on "Heaven" (when I want to be encouraged), and Laura Ingraham's new book, "The Obama Diaries" (when I need a laugh) - but which also shares accurate information on how much Obama, his wife, and his cohorts hate America and are trying to destroy it by transforming it into a Marxist/Commie/progressive/Islamo-Fascist tyranny. Light reading...huh? LOL!

Kevin said...

Hi Gary,
Oh, I forgot to mention that I have been asked to teach six courses in the Fall. I know you desperately hope that I will be unemployed, but that won't be the case for me. It also has nothing to do with my evaluations--and has everything to do with being a good teacher.

You state: "And yet you continue to equate a movement that kills thousands, sometimes many thousands, per year...with a few isolated churches that hold up signs that say "God Hates Homosexuals."" What??? Do you even bother reading what I type? Apparently not. When have I mentioned churches that hold up signs like this? I don't have too many problems with idiots who hold up signs that say God Hates Fags or churches who pick and choose what they want to believe. All I know is that they are dangerous people because they believe they have the correct interpretation. You are so hung up on homosexuality that you can't seem to move beyond it in whatever topic you are discussing.


Again, you don't understand what I wrote regarding the Protestants and Catholics. But keep trying. In the end it may come to you. I don't spoon feed the answers to my students and I certainly won't try to explain it yet again, because whatever I say you automatically reject.

Yes, I am partially ignorant of an engineering degree, at least as ignorant as you are with understanding a history degree (or does Sowell give you information about that, as well???). However, I have a Bachelor's degree in Biology, so I did my time with math and physics and chemistry. And do you have a degree in history?

Hi Christine,
I will definitely listen to that sermon. As mentioned above, I will be teaching six courses and all of my time is spent teaching, working in my garden, working on my house, and preparing for the Fall.

Gary Baker said...

Hi Christine,

I have just started getting into non-fiction reading. I've always liked Thomas Sowell's comments (when I can find them), so I started on some of his. My first was "Intellectuals and Society," which is a wonderful recap of the destruction wrought by 200 years of liberal intellectuals giving advice on things as though they actually knew what worked. I'm now reading his "Economics Facts and Fallacies" and "Inside American Education." Aside from wonderful explanations of how things work in real life, Mr. Sowell also puts an incredible amount of time into research. His citations run into the hundreds, giving you lots of places to go for confirmation and additional research. It's also fact based, vice opinion based, and uses real world examples instead of theoretical predictions. Needless to say, liberals hate him with a passion.

I've heard about "The Road to Serfdom" and "The Obama Diaries." Both are on my short list of things to get to. I could accomplish so much if I didn't have to work and be a husband and father.

BTW - Our family is starting a new adventure this weekend. We are hosting a Japanese foreign exchange student for the school year. Keep us in your prayers. It should be a great experience.

Kevin said...

Gary--I've decided to read this book by Sowell. I just put a hold on it at the university and it should be in in a couple of days. Can you please give me the specific page number that refers to this in his book: "I've been reading Mr. Sowell's book on education in America recently. Apparently it's easy to get glowing reviews from your students. All you have to do is validate their feelings, no matter how ill-informed and undeserved." I've decided it is better to read this thing from the horse's mouth, rather than hearsay.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"I know you desperately hope that I will be unemployed, but that won't be the case for me."

Once again you have me confused with a liberal. They want people to be unemployed because that increases dependency on the government. I want everyone to be gainfully employed. I actually want everyone to succeed.

"and has everything to do with being a good teacher."

And that's one man's opinion...

"All I know is that they are dangerous people because they believe they have the correct interpretation."

Based on that, atheists are dangerous, and liberal Christians are dangerous, and Hindus are dangerous...

Everyone believes they have the correct interpretation, Kevin. If that was all that was required for danger, then none of us would survive. What makes Islam particularly dangerous is that the correct interpretation requires them to kill, convert or enslave all non-Muslims. I freely admit that not all or even a majority accept this interpretation, but that isn't required. A minority of Germans believed that violence was justified to promote Nazism. The rest stood by and let it happen. A survey was done in Britain several years ago. Approximately 15% of Muslims surveyed refused to rule out violence to advance Islam. There are approximately 1.3 billion Muslims. If that figure holds true, even in a moderate country like England, what's the potential?

"You are so hung up on homosexuality that you can't seem to move beyond it in whatever topic you are discussing."

No, Kevin. You are the one who defines yourself by homosexuality. You're quite clear on the matter.

"because whatever I say you automatically reject."

That's your default response whenever you can't defend a position. You may have noticed: I never "automatically reject" what you write. I thoughtfully and carefully point out how wrong it is when appropriate. Unfortunately, it is seldom not appropriate.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"And do you have a degree in history? "

No. I don't have a degree in English, but I can read every word in the English language. Because I was trained in phonics, how to analyze and break down the sounds, I can determine what the word is and use it to discover meaning if needed. That's why you fail constantly, Kevin. You don't analyze. You swallow everything your liberal icon crap professors told you about Christianity and Western Civ and never bother to consider how much was lie, how much was half-truth, and how much was distorted through lack of context. That's the reason that you are pushing for economic policies that have destroyed economies for generations and lowered the freedom and standard of living around the world.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

Happy to oblige someone trying to improve themselves (even though I still can't seem to get a straight answer from you on the Irish question).

See page 5 of "Inside American Education." If you get a different edition, you'll find the discussion titled "Psycho-Therapeutic 'Education'. Here's a synopsis (for those not getting the book):

A reporter spent months in a high school in LA. He asked some graduating seniors what they had learned. A boy described as "the smartest boy in the class" replied:

"I learned that in the Vietnam War, North and South Korea fought against each other, and then there was a truce at the 38th parallel, and that Eisenhower had something to do with it."

The reporter asked the boy if it would bother him to know that the things he learned were wrong. The boy replied:

"Not really. Because what we really learned from Miss Silver was that we were worth listening to, that we could express ourselves and an adult would listen, even if we were wrong. That's why Miss Silver will always be our favorite teacher. She made us feel like we mattered, like we were important."

The teacher is quoted on the same page as expressing that her major goal was to help them express themselves. No knowledge or learning required. He also goes into great detail about how your crap about modern students being better thinkers than those who had the older methods is just that - Crap. Modern educational techniques have managed to make students, and teachers as well, apparently, feel "good" about themselves far out of proportion to their training or abilities.

Has it ever occurred to you that using the methods you seem so contemptuous of, America was the pinnacle of invention, industry, and wealth for generations, and yet after approximately 40 years of liberal education theory the President has stated that the world can't count on us to do as much as before. We not only score worse on standardized tests that measure computation than many other industrialized nations, we also score worse, much worse, on problems involving reasoning and analysis. Meanwhile, liberal educators such as yourself are patting yourselves on the back on what a great job you are doing while fighting against anything to improve accountability, reward excellence, or remove incompetence.

Lead, follow, or get the heck out of the way.

Kevin said...

Hi Gary,
You said: "No, Kevin. You are the one who defines yourself by homosexuality. You're quite clear on the matter." Gary, when was the last time I brought up the fact that I am gay? You bring it up all the time (especially when you want to compare Iran to the U.S.). I never talk about it here because I know Christine's view of it. Look at all the times you have brought it up in our discussions over the past month, and then look at all the times I brought it up.

And I will look at page 5, but how is that related to your statement that "Apparently it's easy to get glowing reviews from your students. All you have to do is validate their feelings, no matter how ill-informed and undeserved." I expect to see Sowell discussing the review process that most professors go through. However, I will read that page, but I expect to see something of what you pointed out to me. And I don't teach high school, but teach college. There is a big difference. Students who get failing grades do not give glowing reviews of their professors (and yes, I fail quite a few).

You ask: "Has it ever occurred to you..." No, it hasn't because what you are talking about doesn't refer to me. Teachers who don't care about what they are teaching or don't care that their students are being taught incorrect material should be fired right away. If they don't care that the student can't write a research paper or discuss material in a logical way should be fired. So much for my 'liberal' teaching skills.

"liberal educators such as yourself are patting yourselves on the back on.." What, conservative educators don't pat themselves on the back? Or are they all totally correct? Now you have me totally interested in what Prof. Sowell has to say on this matter.

Speaking of patting yourself on the back: you have told me that you graduated Summa Cum Laude and have a degree in English and can understand every word or at least figure out what a word means. Glad to hear it! You would probably do fine in my courses.

"Lead, follow, or get the heck out of the way." Finally, something we can agree on.

Gary Baker said...

Hi Kevin,

"Gary, when was the last time I brought up the fact that I am gay?"

Most anytime you are complaining about how you are persecuted and when you can use it to paint those who oppose gay marriage as homophobes.

"There is a big difference."

Prove it. What are the quality controls? In my job, if I am not competent, I will be fired. No unions at my place, and I would not want one. But to be retained, my projects must come in on time and budget. The calculations have to be correct. The solutions provide a tangible benefit to the customer and that means she will send more business our way.

You stated last time that you were in demand because you were an excellent teacher. Prove it. Show me some objective standard that you meet for excellence. Your students liking you is nice, but it doesn't make you a good teacher. Likewise, a high pass rate doesn't mean anything. That means the students are passing, but so what? If your questions give credit for answers such as "Chamberlain was ignorant of the facts," a statement easily shown false, then why should I think your class is taught with any greater accuracy? Your class is probably required for some majors, but that doesn't mean that it is necessarily useful otherwise, or even accurate. So show me what makes you good.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"No, it hasn't because what you are talking about doesn't refer to me."

Really? Again, show me what makes you so good when so many of your liberal compatriots are embracing methods that are so often.

"Teachers who don't care about what they are teaching or don't care that their students are being taught incorrect material should be fired right away."

In this we agree. Unfortunately, thanks to the NEA, Democrats, and other liberal minds, that's pretty much impossible. In California and NY they keep teachers in rooms on full pay until retirement because it is too much trouble to buck the unions to fire them. In Washington DC, arguably the worst school system in the country, over 90% of the teachers were rated as highly proficient using the previous evaluations. The story was that the teachers were great. The kids just weren't learning. That's starting to change now as the new school superintendent is trying to fight for real reform. Naturally, the unions are challenging her.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"What, conservative educators don't pat themselves on the back? Or are they all totally correct?"

Actually, they are largely absent. Roughly 85% of professors at major universities self identify as liberal. They also control the schools of education and psychology, which is the reason that conservatives are often excluded from those professions. A conservative was threatened with expulsion from a school of education for writing a paper and stating the opinion that corporal punishment may (not should, mind you, but may have a place as part of discipline program). To hear the shock and outrage, you would never have thought that it was part and parcel of discipline throughout most of recorded history.

"you have told me that you graduated Summa Cum Laude and have a degree in English"

No, I wrote I do not have degree in English. I have been trained to analyze letter sounds, unlike the "whole language" crap that educators foisted on students.

I eagerly await to hear what you think of Sowell, but somehow I doubt that I will. You'll probably tell me what you feel, how much you dislike him and how wrong he is, and you won't be able to back it up with any data.

BTW - I was considering that statement you made about how I automatically disregard anything you say, and I remembered that when I first brought Sowell up your first response was something along the lines of how you didn't trust him because he worked at the Brookings Institute. No knowledge of his work, no evidence of any misdeed, just a quick attempt to discredit without any facts. Your projection is delicious irony. I got quite a chuckle.

Kevin said...

Hi Gary,

You say: "when you can use it to paint those who oppose gay marriage as homophobes." Ok, now I am totally convinced you have me confused with someone else--really. I don't talk about gay marriage here because I know how Christine feels about it (and I can already guess what she is going to write after Prop. 8 was declared unconstitutional). I don't think Christine is a 'homophobe.' In fact, I hate that word so I wouldn't use it. Maybe you are active in other blogs and argue with other people, because your description of 'me' is not me.


I gave my comment about Sowell, not because he worked at the Brookings Institute (I've heard of it, but don't know what exactly they do--does he do work there too???) but because he works at the Hoover Institute. I know of the Hoover Institute because I live just 5 miles from Stanford. The Hoover Institute only has conservatives (Cond. Rice is there as well). You state: "No knowledge of his work." Hardly, and shows you how much you really know about me. When you mentioned his book and his name, I did some research--how else would I know he is at the Hoover Institute? You won't find liberals being employed there. Pretty simple, but based on facts. I hope you are still chuckling, because now you have me chuckling. You, on the other hand, totally believe everything he has to say because he agrees with you and is a conservative. At least I am willing to read what he has to say. Christine has even gotten me to listen to Glenn Beck! Who knows, I may even agree with some things Sowell says. But I know for a fact he is conservative. And I know for a fact I am liberal, so I know we will differ on many things. But I bet I could call him up and have a coffee with him and we would agree more than we would disagree, and even if we disagreed, we could at least laugh about it. Hmm. I might just do that.

I don't need to provide you with any proof that I am a good teacher. Besides, your job description is nearly just like mine:
"In my job, if I am not competent, I will be fired." Same with me.

"No unions at my place, and I would not want one." There is a union, but I do not take part in it (although I am a member). However, I do like having one.

"But to be retained, my projects must come in on time and budget." Same with me. I have a certain amount of time and money to get things done. If a class if left unfinished, I get fired. Budgets are pretty important at universities these days. It is all everyone is talking about.

"The calculations have to be correct." Me too. But my calculations are not math, but history.

"The solutions provide a tangible benefit to the customer and that means she will send more business our way." Haven't you heard? The new education model is based on the business model--education is something that is bought. Universities sell knowledge. Students are the customers. If they like what is being sold, they come back for more and send their friends. Other than the union part, we are very much the same.

Gary Baker said...

Hi Kevin,

I apologize for mixing up my institutes. Apart from the rest of it, you still haven't mentioned any substantial reason why his information would be in error. I know that conservatives and liberals have differing opinions. No problem there. But you will find when you read him that he rigorously supports his opinions with documented evidence of a factual nature.

"I don't need to provide you with any proof that I am a good teacher. Besides, your job description is nearly just like mine:
"In my job, if I am not competent, I will be fired.""

Except that you can't prove it by any objective measure. The same way that the 90% percent of DC teachers who got the highest proficiency rating didn't have any objective standards to uphold. I'm convinced that one of the main reasons liberals gravitate toward education is that there are very few methods of demonstrating effectiveness. That, and with the government and unions backing them, they just coast along and the children, and eventually all of society, pays.

"There is a union, but I do not take part in it (although I am a member). However, I do like having one."

I imagine so. People who can get by on talent, hard work, and intelligence, generally resent having to pay bribe money to a union or other agency that doesn't necessarily speak to their interests. Fortunately for the union, that description applies to relatively few liberals.

"Same with me. I have a certain amount of time and money to get things done. If a class if left unfinished, I get fired. Budgets are pretty important at universities these days."

Oh wow - considering that most all of your costs are fixed, that must be quite a challenge. Try keeping a budget when doing something that hasn't been done before, will involve an uncertain amount of labor, capital expenditures, and travel. On the other hand, I imagine that keeping up with your lesson plan probably taxes your abilities pretty heavily.

"But my calculations are not math, but history."

Like your estimation of Chamberlain's knowledge?

"Universities sell knowledge. Students are the customers. If they like what is being sold, they come back for more and send their friends."

Except in most cases they have little or no information to evaluate the relative use or value of a history course. You've certainly proven that having a good grasp of cause and effect is not necessarily a result of your class. I agree with the "like" part, though. Colleges sold a lot of classes that students "liked" for degrees like Women's Studies, Minority studies, etc. More and more of them are getting ticked when they find out they've taken on a great deal of debt for a degree that makes them one of the better read servers at Starbucks.

Kevin said...

O.k. Gary, now I am going to call you out on your incessant babbling about Chamberlain. You PROVE to me that Chamberlain knew everything that Hitler was going to do--the invasion of Poland, the invasion of France and the takeover of Europe. You give me conclusive proof that Chamberlain knew everything that Hitler was going to do. I'll be waiting.

You state: " I'm convinced that one of the main reasons liberals gravitate toward education is that there are very few methods of demonstrating effectiveness." Liberals gravitate towards education because they are smart. And they have the desire to improve the next generation. So what now can be said about the lack of conservatives in education?

You state: "...considering that most all of your costs are fixed." Interesting! I guess you have no clue about what a budget at modern universities consist of. If the budgets were fixed, then the education system in California wouldn't be in such bad shape.

You state: "...Women's Studies, Minority studies, etc." You've said this before, but what business is it of yours if someone wants to study women's studies? Do you understand what this degree is about? Hint--it has something to do with the setup of Western civilization (and most of world civ. as well). I know you save the world and make sure that bridges and planes and trains don't fall apart. That certainly has its place in modern society. I, for one, am grateful when I fly that I don't worry about it crashing. However, there is more to the world than just hard science (um, like religion). Just because you choose to be an engineer doesn't mean that you are saving the world and everyone else should be your servant. Nor does it make you any better than someone who works at Starbucks.

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"You give me conclusive proof that Chamberlain knew everything that Hitler was going to do. I'll be waiting."

Read "Intellectuals and society." Refer to the annotated sources referring to discussions between Churchill and the government leader for the conservative party at the time. All of the heads of Europe knew what Hitler was doing. They were just stupid enough to believe if they disarmed, then Hitler would have no reason to make war, and along the way they gave away their allies. Read it and embrace your intellectual past.

"So what now can be said about the lack of conservatives in education?"

Read "Education in America." The system is set up to reward mediocrity, punish excellence, and discourage people of intellect. Check especially statistics and comparisons of people going into education vice other professional fields. Educators aren't at at the bottom of the barrel, they are the bottom of the barrel! Worst area on the campus. So much for your "liberals are smart and caring crap." There's no other position they could hold that payed so much, demanded so little, and made them virtually immune to competition or meaningful evaluation.

"So what now can be said about the lack of conservatives in education?"

For starters, people use my tax dollars in the forms of financial aid to study this crap that produces no return to society.

"Hint--it has something to do with the setup of Western civilization"

Yes, I know: The persistent desire to belittle and dismantle it by liberals.

"Nor does it make you any better than someone who works at Starbucks."

You misunderstand. I respect the people who work at Starbucks, or clean sewers, or pick up trash, much more than I respect liberal educators. They are producing a valuable service for society. The only thing courses like I mentioned are good for is supporting teachers of crap and getting people in debt for a product worth the smallest fraction of what is charged.

Kevin said...

So Gary, your book told you that Chamberlain knew that Hitler was going to take over Poland, France, Belgium, the Soviet Union and bomb England? Your book told you that Chamberlain knew that Hitler would take nearly all of Europe and parts of North Africa?
If it doesn't say that, then reread my original comment I made. If it does, then I can't wait to read that book.

Kevin said...

Gary,
When I said: "So much for your "liberals are smart and caring..." I was being sarcastic. Get a grip! I try not to see the world in such black and white terms.

And it seems you could do with a little education about women's history. Our Western civilization is patriarchal (thanks to our wonderful religious history). Women were held down and kept out of the education system (especially higher education). Armed with the knowledge of their past, women today can confront it and change it. Maybe you want the U.S. to be in the 'glorious 1950s' (by the way, that is sarcastic), but many women do not want to be barefoot and pregnant, unless it is their choice.

And don't you worry--I'll read Education in America. Or I will read it when you send me the name of the author. But should I really expect to learn anything that you don't spout here daily?

And don't you think it is ironic that the books you recommend are written by an intellectual and an educator? How does that mesh with your black and white view of educators?

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

"Women were held down and kept out of the education system (especially higher education). Armed with the knowledge of their past, women today can confront it and change it."

Which is bull. The changes you describe were made long before these crap-course offerings you are defending. Same for women and racial minorities. All these courses are good for is denigrating the past and instilling feelings of victimhood and entitlement. You're a first class example of what happens when that occurs. True social progress is retarded while everyone turns to lawsuits.

"Or I will read it when you send me the name of the author."

You know the name - Thomas Sowell.

"But should I really expect to learn anything that you don't spout here daily? "

Well, you haven't managed to learn anything yet, but I keep hoping...

"How does that mesh with your black and white view of educators?"

It fits in perfectly. Those who do actual research, understand cause and effect, stand by facts over ideology, and teach how to reach conclusions through analysis do this country and the world a great service. And then there are liberals...

Gary Baker said...

Kevin,

It does better than that: It describes how there was no way that he could not, and yet he and his crowd still kept pushing for the allied countries to disarm. Even though they knew that Germany had broken the treaty by reoccupying the Rhineland and rearming, even though he had already demand, and been given, Austria and Czechoslovakia, they didn't care. What a bunch of surrender-monkeys!

And despite that history, today's liberals seem determined to follow in the same pattern of failure.