Saturday, June 17, 2017

Utter Disaster



It's Texas and there's a "weather advisory" in place, warning people to be careful because of the extreme, searing heat. People are frying steak and eggs on sidewalks and the tailgates of their rigs, it's that hot. So it's a good thing we've got air conditioning, right?




No, wrong, because we don't. It's broken. The Russians got in and hacked the unit and now it doesn't work. Or maybe it wasn't the Russians, perhaps it was a roving crew of Climate Activists out of Austin, taking revenge on the team for not paying the Weather Tax. Who knows? But this much is certain.

No air conditioning at the Compound = total, unmitigated, utter disaster.

As you were,

LSP

28 comments:

LL said...

Retreat to Dallas and compound two. I can cut orders to that effect.

It's expensive to fix those units. The Russians hacked one of the two I have at my house last summer and it was a $6K replacement bill. Send the invoice to Putin...

Adrienne said...

Sorry about the AC, LSP.

Do those people cooking on the sidewalk have a class C food license? I sure hope so.

Jules said...

Call the AC repair man. He's bound to come.

LindaG said...

Probably a liberal snowflake attacking the white privilege air conditioner.

Anonymous said...

Get a Punkawallah?

Mrs. Merryweather said...

Boycott Steven Colbert! He was Disgusting and degrading to our President and now to our First Lady,and to everyone else in their family . Patriotic Americans are fed up with the low intelligence and morals our news media is providing. They have no awareness of the loyalty, morals and pride of Americans fighting to keep our country free. It's very sad! What a mountain of ill-mannered, despicable trash is being dumped on Americans everyday. Don't you all have enough intelligence to recognize you're being manipulated? Everyone disrespecting our country, in any way, should be held accountable. Freedom of speech is precious to us all. When someone is maliciously attacking our President and his family, it should be firmly addressed. Our freedoms are based on respect for one another another. When there is no dignity and pride, our freedoms are not respected and we begin to lose our freedom.

Infidel de Manahatta said...

LSP why do you want polar bears to drown?

Your climate sins have not gone unnoticed.

Expect a visit from Leonardo DiCaprio. (He's flying to Texas on his private jet.)

anonymous said...

Sir!,

We were missing an early week post, how does that go, Mondays w Melamania, or something?, when we realized you must be tending to that beast of an a/c. Well, as a proposed breath of fresh air we'll 'shoot' a comment your way, a calmer and breezier clime prevailing here in the Provinces.

Of late posts seem more incendiary than mere a/c trifles so what we address may reflect earlier LSP entries.

We'll sign off now, but not without saying that we hope that barracks of yours doesn't too much resemble a filthy, fiery furnace.

Yours, GI, et al

anonymous said...

Good-day LSP,

A little something a member of our team churned up addressing recent blog-posts. It goes a little long, but so be it. But it may, therefore, have to arrive in several parts.

Dogma is I’m God Spelled Backwards.

Sadiq Khan, DJT, and the Unravelling Sense of Our Own Good Judgement.

“You sons and daughters of bitches. If Christ came back to Earth today, you and I would surely crucify him.” -Fr J.P. Nelligan,
F.J. Brennan High School, Windsor, Ont. 1980.

“I know my fate. One day my name will be associated with the memory of something tremendous — a crisis without equal on earth, the most profound collision of conscience, a decision that was conjured up against everything that had been believed, demanded, hallowed so far.” -Friedrich Nietzsche, ​Ecce Homo.

Intro.
I recently spent one glorious season in retreat at my favorite seminary in southeastern Wisconsin. The weather was beautiful, late winter verging on spring, and I would regularly take leisurely walks around the many local lakes with our resident rebellious theologian/philosopher (there’s always one), a certain Brother Jonas Underwood. We found ourselves discussing the usual things that two active minds might ponder, but we also felt the affairs of the world were never very far away, and this distracted us tremendously. We became preoccupied with a concept.
I have my reasons, no need to go into them here, for the notion that most problems we face, especially those on a worldly or morally complex level, could better be served by a shift in temporal attitude, one which takes us from the more or less linear mind into one which is more abstract. In solving the riddles of the day it’s sometimes best to call on three often overlooked cornerstones of thought; Philosophy, Empathy and Imagination. Three things that, we decided, make us most Human. By its very nature, this shift in mindset promotes a calmer, more abstract way of thinking, thinking that can relieve us of the traumas that come from responding to complex problems armed only with reason and emotion. Above all, we divined, that mere reason, when coupled as it often is with provocative emotion, (whether that emotion is fear or anger, base prejudice or antagonism), inevitably leads to a disastrous result.
Overcoming base prejudice, is but one example of a problem that can be beneficially dealt with in this manner. Prejudice is an armor, of course, a defensive response very old to the human cortex, part and parcel to the instinctual responses that helped us navigate the tricky and dangerous byways of the past. Stemming from the logical notion that something foreign or threatening to our way life must be dealt with, often with immediacy, prejudice is an instinctual
response designed to help us conceptually calibrate something foreign to ourselves, while offering a subjective defense mechanism to safeguard our values.
I.
Before I was ever exposed to the notion that the world outside might pose a threat, I was taught, like most good Christians I know, that setting aside prejudice and showing respect for the other was a key component for living a good life. If external forces seem to pose a threat, how do we gauge if that threat is a real one or not, an ​existential ​one? This relates directly to what I often read in the colorful and sometimes fascinating blog hosted by The Lone Star Parson. The bulwark that LSP faces in his incendiary and provocative (and humorous-- that bit about Methodists has cracked me up for days) posts is twofold. First it is impractically oppositional. Second, it will never have the support, and more likely will only garner the deep opposition of, somewhat more reflective-minded progressive Christians such as myself. And this, regardless of our political leanings. People, ultimately, that LSP needs to have on his side. When outward threats appear to pose an existential concern to our lives and beliefs, composure becomes our better ally.

anonymous said...

cont.
In the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s, “The West” faced poignant crises aimed at questioning, if not wholly undermining, our points of view on social structure, political narrative, human comportment and the anticipations for our future. The Communist threat, so-called, had its share of violent elements (bitter wars leap to mind, not to mention the threat of nuclear annihilation) but nothing that struck quite as close to home as what we’ve seen in recent years and recent days. However, part of the reason for Communist ideology to secede to its sworn enemy, and I’m generalizing here, was purely for organic means; one system was simply better suited than another to serve modern needs, at least on practical terms. The transitions which pushed Communism aside were very natural​ ​ones for modern humanity; the alternative was simply too appealing and sensible.
The trouble we face today, the clash of Islamist ideology and Western secular values, may arise from the fact that what we currently offer in no way resembles a seemingly better code of existence. Our general lifestyle, exacerbated by the fact that it is casually lead and unswervingly and ceaselessly promoted, is one that we condone without any heed for consequence or foresight; the values of an often corrupt and insidious social structure, promoted tirelessly and always on a grand scale. Crumbling social systems shot through with crime and inequality, a near total failure of the family unit, religious vacancy, corporate and personal greed wantonly on display and pressed onto others, a slavish adherence to hedonistic materialism. All the symptoms of a society which at its core seems to have failed because of misguided, ingrained ideals. Ideals that undermine our otherwise relevant, plural and progressive society and its unique place in the world. For this, and for other reasons, I must point out that the things I read on the LSP web-log ought point not to a conflict of religions but, rather, to a conflict of ideals. LSP, I implore you to make this distinction.

anonymous said...

cont.
II.
The condemnation of an entire culture, society, or Faith is never a wise idea. Without going into the hand-wringing gyrations of liberal thinkers I know, we’re debating the merits of a religion, one that, although it is indeed foreign to us, is also one that is filled with its own calls to leading a good life, a wholesome life. I stand in near reverence listening to how my devout friends rise early, pray five times a day, and try to lead a good life. That reverence fades fast when I look around at our larger society, one that is led by a godless cretin who has never entered a church and never will.
I think your quarrel lies elsewhere, therefore. The mistakes you make lie in confusing the general Islamic Faith with the more pernicious elements of ​Shari’ah​. You, and we in turn, would be better served if you directed your veritable acumen and considerable fervor at that specific element, one that is mostly derived from the minds of men, a code which demands its own implementation at the expense of all other points of view. A code that is, I will say, dogma incarnate. “According to sharia theory, conversion of disbelievers and non-Muslims to Islam is encouraged as a ​religious duty​ for all Muslims.” (Italics mine). This, an essential mainstay of the conservative views of codified religious belief, is where our concerns should lie; the loathsome convert-or-destroy tactics of traditional Medievalism, of traditionalist dogma.
(The political Left also loves to blunder into this lack of distinction, by the way. They think that anyone questioning Sharia is making an indictment tantamount to a condemnation of Islam, which is rubbish. My leftie-liberal friends (oh, and I have many many of them) love to hurl the epithet “fascist!” at anyone bold enough to question the social incongruities of Sharia. They chafe at the notion that someone might find it “inconsistent with Western values”, when any adherent to the doctrine itself would be the first to tell you that, indeed, it stands in strident opposition to much of what people hold dear in the West. There is a hidden kernel of deepest irony here, then, close to the surface. The values so cherished and stridently defended with epistolic verve by my most liberal friends, values which far outrank basic Western concerns in their socially upright fervor, would be the first to crumble under the application of any strict religious dictate. The great irony here is the fact that, apart from white male patriarchy, these social justice warriors cut their teeth on condemnations of religious-based orthodoxy.)

anonymous said...

cont.
III.
A friend of mine remarked recently that a symptom of the ongoing bitter circumstances we face is the fact that “there will always be oppression.” Our standing armies, spread across the globe, are a symbol of this, certainly. Alas, no one can deny that they’re also merely in place to protect our energy reserves and political influence, the infrastructures that nourish our often apathetic lives and social lethargy, our impatient desire to have it all, and have it all now. A more pervasive influence, however, is the oppressive ​cultural​ oppression we spread far and wide, the dogma that is the imposition of our social will upon other people. To make matters worse, we
spread this influence secure in the notion that it’s done with the assertion of some sort of divine right. Convert, or face economic death. Rush to embrace secular materialism, or face the continued indignities of social and cultural apartheid. Follow us, or be cast out into the perpetual darkness of The Third World and its forgotten ways.
I don’t know about you LSP, but I’ve always hated shopping malls, and McDonalds’ food has always made me feel ill (although I do have a reluctant love of The Somerset Collection, and the glories of a well-made ​poutine ​cannot be denied)​.​ I’m not saying we can ever entirely retract the influences of something as pervasive, as insidious, as our cultural tyrannies, but we may be in a position to pay a penance for our sins. Can it be too much to ask that we lead the way as a progressive society, a society heralding decent behavior, as we continue to have others look to our example and follow our lead? This wouldn’t be easy, and it would take a re-working of our own social structures, norms and decisions. But I ask you, if the occupying forces of a foreign army colonized our shores, or attempted to do so with their ideals, would we not certainly take to the streets? Indeed, I would bring the fight right to them. Who then can question others for doing the same?
IV.
Asking someone to abandon their faith, or condemning them for it, is as impractical as it is immoral. It’s hard to make the distinction as to who I’m speaking of here, because you, and they, gleefully level the same indictments upon each other. Remember, to many people, the religion is the culture, ​shaping who they are and always have been or hope to be. It is Identity. As a Medievalist surely you understand this.
Many Muslims I know couldn’t care less about the better parts of our society functioning any differently than they do now, and are happy to celebrate that. There is greater peace and coexistence here than in Europe, say, precisely because we all are better integrated and quietly confident of our social union. This place has given friends I know comfort and opportunity, and, above all, a code of law which promises the freedom of religious choice we all deserve. They should never be asked to abandon their faith.

anonymous said...

cont.
Still others insist that they believe in nothing but Sharia. When pressed on this they respond to the senselessness of the question with incredulity the likes of which you might only see on the face of a nuclear physicist when asked whether the Earth is flat or round. Mostly older, and set in the ways of cultural stubbornness and dogmatic fervor, they will always be at odds with everything they see around them. They are the same antique-minded individuals who will rush to correct you that confusing the term “Allah” with “God” is something only a weak-minded Western liberal would do. Allah is Allah to them, something that stands wholly antithetical to anything but Itself. Here then is the trouble. Dogmatic belief, the thing that lends others the notion that the world they see outside their windows should be open to extremist repair.
I know you like to take exception with political leaders who, when confronted with these issues, retreat into the realms of political vacuum and vapid correctness when they should be addressing these difficult ideas directly. If Sadiq Khan then, a good individual and good politician struggling with great difficulties, needs to be corrected, it is merely that he needs to direct his criticisms at such dogma.​ Shari’ah​ and all that it promotes is fine for some cultures, but men and women like Sadiq Khan must be asked to point out that it is better left “over there,” where it perhaps belongs. At the heart of this entire problem then, is not a clash of religions, but the clash of stubborn dogmatic men and their dogmatic, petrified ideals.
As abiding Christians we too are not immune to dogmatic conviction, and I’ll address one of the most deep-seated dogmas of the day as an example. Nothing drains my liturgical fervor more than the notion that as everyday Catholics we need merely sit around and wait for The Christ to return among us and solve all our problems. (By way of stifling debate on this point, hardly central to what we’re discussing, I will just point out that perhaps Christ ​already has ​come again, as promised, in what is known to us as the original Pentecost. His visitation to the disciples in the upper chamber, and his imposition of the Holy Spirit.) Instead, let me give you this: ​Ecce Homo​, “here is man,” standing quite alone in the need to solve his own problems, and pressed to do so now more than ever. It doesn’t take deep philosophy, but some will help at any rate, in turning our minds to the notion that we may be the only force we can call upon in saving ourselves.
I may be far adrift from the truth here but who knows. It’s difficult to assess the minds and motivations of what unfolds these days, foreign concepts rooted in attitudes spawned across distant seas and distant centuries. It might not be too much to imagine that, although Sadiq Khan himself might not think so, he may be only a degree or two of separation from others of his faith. Others that might, in their heart of hearts, see the bloody dilemmas we face, although tragic indeed, as but a fact of life and death that was perhaps a thousand years in the making. Providence, of a sort, worthy of reluctant celebration. By the same token, my dismissal of gospel scripture may be shortsighted. But if so, I think even an all-loving Christ, weary of intervening in the affairs of men, would not be opposed to having us find our own way in this, having made the mess, this horrible mess, ourselves.
I hate to see my various heroes (Morrissey, John Lydon, LSP, etc.) sully their longstanding tradition as free-thinkers by making broad and sweeping generalizations about the difficult problems of the day. Perhaps some of this will help. Philosophy, then, to be sure, and empathy in an attempt to relate one to another. And finally, imagination. Allowing nothing more than a plea which demands that we ask the hardest questions, and question the limits of our disregard.

Yours in the Ways of Life, Reggie Featherstone.

LSP said...

That, Jules, is a VERY good point.

LSP said...

I was just about to do all of that, LL, when a prayer was answered. Thank God.

LSP said...

Adrienne, I have a sneaking feeling that they don't. I'll get onto Health and Safety asap.

LSP said...

I hadn't thought of that, Linda, but I should have. Soros funded snowflake justice warriors on a mission to sabotage the Compound. It all fits.

LSP said...

Anonymous, that would've been very welcome...

LSP said...

Merryweather, to quote one operator, "That looks like spam but I'll let it stand."

LSP said...

I stand warned, Infidel.

bonsai retreat said...

Didn't mean to go all "anon" with that comment re 'dogma'.

More from us later,

-Bonsai Retreat, and the gloriousinvestiture team

LSP said...

Thanks, RF, for the thoughtful essay and I'm glad you enjoyed the seminary.

For the record, I think your thoughts on Western secular materialism are on target; who wants to see the world turned into a vast, decaying strip mall? With that in mind, we shouldn't be surprised to see people looking for extreme spiritual solutions to fill the current vacuum. Radical, fervent, pure Islam is one route. But here's the problem.

Islam, since its inception, is a war religion and Jihad is written into the DNA of Mohammed's creation. We see this in the actions of the Prophet himself, who was, notoriously, a warlord. To put it another way, warfare, conquest and its spoils, such as slavery, aren't the result of erroneous prejudice and misguided dogma, they're part of Islam itself. They're substantial rather than accidental.

This means that Islam, not just Sharia, its legal code, is at war with the world until the world submits. History demonstrates this clearly as does the current Islamic revival.

I'd argue that this is a threat that has to be recognized for what it is and dealt with accordingly. Not allowing millions of military aged male Muslims into Europe might be a good first step and, from a religious perspective, revitalizing the Faith of the West wouldn't hurt either.

In the meanwhile, the vacuous platitudes of the left will only exacerbate the problem until it gets really serious and a lot of people die. An ideal situation for an NWO totalitarianism to impose control, come to think of it. But therein lies a different tale.

Stay tuned for more of the popular series, Melania Mondays! and be careful in that Motor City.

Cheers,

LSP

LSP said...

Bonsai, I totally understand. Dogmatically.

bonsai retreat said...

hello again.

It’s exciting to make sweeping and awesome critical accusations about doctrine, faith, or social structure, accusations that seem to undermine legitimacy in one fell swoop. It has the flavor of punitive criticism, and that’s exciting, especially when what we see unfolding here and there in the world is so in need of poignant excoriation, is so damnable. It doesn’t take much research to unearth the bloody histories of a faith and attach them to current trends, but often that may serve merely to relieve ourselves of blame in the matter by bandying about the indignities of other people's obvious bad behavior.
And yet, all the Muslims I know, and most in the larger faith, have no use for the one that you describe. It’s not a war religion to them, and once again, I think better use of terminology is in order. What has taken place in various quarters of the Middle East is “revolution,” not “revival,” and the only doctrine at hand has been pressed into service. Revolutions of the past (French, Bolshevik, Maoist) were directed internally. This one is directed at forces outside itself, intent on preserving certain values, values that have been compromised and supplanted.

I’ll explain.

As I’ve pointed out in our past conversations, the hallmark, indeed, the legacy of Modernism, since the Enlightenment, is the rise of the concept of the Individual, and nothing speaks to the concept of promoting individualism more than the notion of Identity​. ​What happened in Tehran in the 1970s is a great example of this. It was a “crisis” that predates everything we see unfolding at the moment: the overthrow of prevailing oppression, one sponsored by foreign entities, by an act of religious reaffirmation. A religious revolution to be sure, but also a cultural revolution, one with notions of Identity at its core. This was not a revival, but rather the recognition of cultural domination as an affront, one to be battled. Embracing the religion meant embracing Identity, identity that had been suppressed, and when it comes to opposition and rebellion, nothing can promote a revolution like the affirmation of Identity. Ironically, this was their Modernism.

In our historic need to act as colonial invaders, and in our later desperate need for a labor force willing to fulfill tasks we could or would not, we generated a collision of cultures, across Britain and Europe certainly, if not elsewhere. In much of northern Europe, it could be argued, the guilt feelings surrounding colonial history opened the floodgates of mid-twentieth-century migration. Not a wise motive upon which to base an ​en masse ​immigration policy, but so be it. Perhaps this is why France seems to suffer greater punitive retribution than anywhere else—the postcolonial hangover. France, intent upon merely living ​la belle vie,​ hardly needed to engage the forces of Second War tyranny. Perhaps it felt it could do the same today. Living the good life while submitting a modern-day immigrant underclass to the indignities of absolute apartheid.

It brings me back to the crux of everything I’ve based my weariest concerns upon. A century (don’t they call it “The American Century”?) of bad behavior, relentlessly pursued with the forthright conviction that anything we might want, or want to govern or direct with a specific set of greed-filled desires, should be ours for the taking. Our own epic war machine of absolute
economic force and cultural entitlement. No need to go into another diatribe about all that’s at work here. The rampant greed, the vast landscapes of social irresponsibility and trenchant lethargy, are well on display. And no need for some Christian fundamentalist insurgency to go overseas to inflict our will. The world's most finely trained military is always poised to do that.

bonsai retreat said...

cont.
This isn’t just a question, then, of strip malls cropping up around the corner, but rather, around the corner from Mecca. There may be as many shopping plazas within the walls of Mecca as there are in Manhattan or Georgetown, and a McD or two as well—doubtless serving h​ alal ​beef flown in from the Angus pastures of Scotland. The trouble is, to some, this can never be seen as incidental.​ This is the issue that you completely ignore in your fine rebuke: the idea that our cultural colonization has spread far and wide, is insidious, and threatens established points of view that are, and always will be, at odds with it. What’s good on the Ginza may be good for the cultural elite of any society. But it may not be good at all for the culturally inbred members, old or young, of ​Hezbollah ​and the Taliban. Problems arise when we make it it an absolute imposition upon other people.

Within thirty years of the Prophet of Islam’s death, three, or was it four, of his variously appointed successors, were put to death, the result of an internecine struggle of succession that was, indeed, warlike. Heads placed upon platters and presented to reigning caliphs, that sort of thing. This may resonate to some as a vicious genesis, hardly the good starting point for a world religion, as the only ones murdering Christians at the beginning were the authorities, worried about their grip on power. And yet, one wonders what atrocities the Christian Church was perpetrating in the 7th century. They’re well documented.

Peace and peaceful interpretation of religion comes, then, where we can find it, and where we can do our best to enshrine the elements of that peaceful point of view, the peaceful practice of our most cherished beliefs. This applies to both East and West.

We agree with much of what The LSP has to say, the sage advice and stern opinion, but we stand by our claims. Dogma will ruin us. It’s not the Middle Ages, it never will be, and no one with an ounce of sense or civility wants it to be again. Nothing is going to claim our place; at the end of the day, the West has too much to offer to be bowled over by concerns about some sort of caliphate or other. But be sure of this: When under threat, existential, ​cultural ​threat, religion will always prove itself to be a useful tool to those in need of a way of sanctimoniously countering a prevailing culture, the oppressive culture. We ask that The LSP be aware of these notions, at the risk of otherwise appearing paranoid or, at the very least, retrograde, dogmatic.

R. Featherstone.
Operations Manager, Political Action Wing and Food Criticism. Glorious Investiture.

LSP said...

Thanks, RF, for your thoughtful short essay, good stuff. But aren't Muslims supposed to emulate their founder, Mohammed? With that in mind, it's a very good thing that the Muslims you know don't. After all, he was a conquering, enslaving, raping warlord and this is at the foundation of their faith, as opposed to a creature of its 2nd generation, as you seem to suggest.

There were Christians who acted that way too in the 7th C and beyond but the difference lies in the fact that they were being untrue to their dogma while Mohammad wasn't. After all, he scripted the belief in question and acted accordingly. There's a conundrum in that for modern, tolerant, peaceful Muslims.

Do you think, out of interest, that dogma is wrong in itself or that some dogmas are wrong? "Dogma will ruin us" seems a little, ahem, dogmatic. Surely you're not being "operationally inconsistent." And, at the risk of being antagonistic, I'll stick with revival and I'll see your dogma with this.

Mohammed wasn't some kind of desert Gandhi, Medina wasn't a great big Woodstock in the sand and Islam's just like Buddhism, only way more peaceful.

Kizmet.







bonsai retreat said...

Thnx for your publishing and reading/responding patience in all this LSP, it's been fun.

I do hate inconsistencies in life, and "operational" ones no less than any others. All we can do is continue to try and scour the surface in attempts to find truths, both large and small.

In the meantime, and when I'm at my most prankish, I love to tell my more stubborn-minded Muslim friends that I've converted to Hinduism. They truly go apeshit when I say this, confused, as they already are, by my inane vegetarianism. But it always gives me a good chuckle.

What will my more Catholic friends say? Prob they won't care.

Namaste.

LSP said...

Thanks for the COMMENT(s), br. Fun. And I hope you enjoy being a Hindoo although I feel that being a Sikh would be better.

If you meet the Buddha on the road, shoot it.

Cheers.