Thinking About Those Who Give All

Maybe it’s just me, but I didn’t think that Trump’s comments to the widow – if they were accurately reported – were offensive. I can just imagine my father saying pretty much the same thing had I died during my Navy service. I’ve read some comments from some veterans claiming to be offended and I’m not going to call them wrong for viewing it that way, but for me and the veterans I know, it was just a thing to be said. When we signed up, we all knew it was possible. To be sure, we all thought, if it came to combat, “it’ll be you and you and you, but not me”, but we also knew that the reality could be very different.

And it all got me thinking that we’re taking the whole thing of death a bit the wrong way. We all, as Shakespeare said, owe God a death. We hope to have our line of credit extended indefinitely (as Manchester in his autobiography about his war experiences put it), but death does come for us all in the by and by. And I think that, these days, we get entirely too maudlin about death.

I’m not thinking we should get all Spartan about it – “come home with your shield, or on it”; was what Spartan mothers would say to their sons going off to war – but, perhaps, a bit more Roman?

Then out spake brave Horatius,
The Captain of the Gate:
“To every man upon this earth
Death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better
Than facing fearful odds,
For the ashes of his fathers,
And the temples of his Gods.”

Or another view, similar, which I’ve quoted here years before:

Now, God be thanked Who has matched us with His hour,
And caught our youth, and wakened us from sleeping,
With hand made sure, clear eye, and sharpened power,
To turn, as swimmers into cleanness leaping,
Glad from a world grown old and cold and weary,
Leave the sick hearts that honour could not move,
And half-men, and their dirty songs and dreary,
And all the little emptiness of love!

Oh! we, who have known shame, we have found release there,
Where there’s no ill, no grief, but sleep has mending,
Naught broken save this body, lost but breath;
Nothing to shake the laughing heart’s long peace there
But only agony, and that has ending;
And the worst friend and enemy is but Death.

That was Rupert Brooke, written as he went off to World War One. He got his death, and while very sorrowful for his many friends, it was still a glorious thing and he a man worthy of honor and remembrance. And I think that a lot of our people who seem ill at ease around death are those “sick hearts that honour could not move”. People who shrink from any real sacrifice – whether it is the sacrifice of merely having children and being decent parents; the sacrifice of keeping at a dreary job because one has responsibilities…or the sacrifice of one’s life in a cause.

I am getting old, now; not quite old, yet – but getting there. There is more time behind me than in front. I have done many things to be ashamed of, but there are a few things I’ve done which please me. I’ve kept my promise in some things, that is – and one of them was to be a Sailor in the United States Navy. Had I died as a young man in the Navy, I’d likely be nearly forgotten by now. Decades would have passed; my parents are now dead. My brothers and sisters would, at times, be reminded they once had a brother who is no longer there…but I wouldn’t be much more than a fleeting memory; a life cut short on this Earth. But, for all that, we are all doomed to be forgotten on this Earth. Whether one believes in the religious or the purely materialistic view of the world, eventually everything we do here becomes less than a memory here. We who have religion believe there is something much greater beyond this world, but even we believe that this world is doomed. You can take one of two courses of action in light of this: to either greedily grab on to every bit of life you can, or to merely try to do the right thing by others, even if it means you die and they go on. To those who greedily grab on to life, the fact that a life is cut short is the worst crime. To those who take the other view, it is the life that is poorly lived, long or short, which is the worst crime.

It is terribly sad for us – especially as we grow older – to see a young person die. Even for those of us with religious belief, there seems to be something very wrong in a young person, so full of promise, to be taken away from us. But there is something else to ponder about those who die young:

Right you guessed the rising morrow
And scorned to tread the mire you must:
Dust’s your wages, son of sorrow,
But men may come to worse than dust.

Souls undone, undoing others,-
Long time since the tale began.
You would not live to wrong your brothers:
Oh lad, you died as fits a man.

Now to your grave shall friend and stranger
With ruth and some with envy come:
Undishonoured, clear of danger,
Clean of guilt, pass hence and home.

Turn safe to rest, no dreams, no waking;
And here, man, here’s the wreath I’ve made:
‘Tis not a gift that’s worth the taking,
But wear it and it will not fade.

That is from A Shropeshire Lad – which is not exactly what I’m looking for, but it does address the issue of whether death is the worst thing which can happen. A man (or, these days, a woman) who goes to war is doing an act of sublime self-sacrifice. This is especially true in our modern age where we do not conscript people into war (and God grant we never do, again). That young man or woman who dons our nation’s uniform may have all sorts of bad in him or her. But by putting their lives on the line, they are balancing that bad – and if they do end up giving their life for their country, then they have carried out the greatest love of all, that a person should give his or her life for their friends. C. S. Lewis pointed out that had he, in his World War One service, shot a German in the same instant the German shot him, they’d both probably have wound up in heaven and had a good laugh about it. At such a moment, a person’s selfish desires are at their lowest ebb and their willingness to sacrifice to save others at the highest pitch. And as we must all die, why is this the worst way to die?

I would, of course, that all the young people today could live to a hundred and during their long lives have nothing but the blessings of peace, love and prosperity. But we all know that won’t happen. Even in the best of our lives, there is pain. And, at the end of it, death. We should avoid war because it is wrong to kill. But some times it becomes necessary to kill in order to defend what we hold most dear. And if we have to kill, it is certain that some of ours will be killed. To feel sorrow at their deaths is natural and beautiful – but to take their death and keep it separate from their courage is wrong. They, I think, would not want to be merely remembered as those who died, but as those who did something very special.

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Busy Week Open Thread

Governor Brown of California had a flash of sanity. Somewhere in the back of his mind he remembered that due process of law is rather a good thing.

Salon made up a list of Conservatives worth following on Twitter. You now have your list of who not to follow.

Harvey Weinstein has been demoted from Progressive Hero to Evil Defender of Patriarchy. Bill retains his position as Progressive Hero, however.

You’re a racist. No, really – Progressives say so. Again.

Trump and McConnell had a get together. I think the Trumpsters are doing wrong by McConnell. As I’ve said before, he’s probably one of the most reliable people trying to help Trump…if only because he knows that if Trump wins, the GOP wins; if Trump loses, the GOP loses.

Don Surber has some observations about the press and freedom. My view: a free press is only worthwhile if it isn’t all on one side. Biased journalism isn’t the problem – the press has always been biased. Used to be, however, that there was biased journalism in favor of all sides…and so, in the aggregate, the truth would come out. These days, 90% of the press (at least) is all on one side…and that they pretend to objectivity merely makes their bias more pronounced.

Jimmy Kimmel isn’t upset that Republicans no longer watch his show. I’ve never seen it, so I wouldn’t know.

O J Simpson is out searching for the real killers partying with women. The only thing I don’t understand: why any woman, even for pay, would want to be around him?

Our SJW friends have moved on from toppling Lee to going after statues of Lincoln. This is just how the left is – but I think that people tire, at long last, of it all. The proof will be in the electoral pudding, but I think that 2018 and 2020 will surprise a lot of people.

Yet another fake hate crime. These days, I always work on the assumption that hate crimes are all fake. There just aren’t enough real racists left in America to sustain a hate crime campaign. Tops, a few hundred thousand Americans subscribe to the absurdity that a person is inferior based on skin color. In order to keep race hatred alive, the race-baiters are forced to use fraud.

Open Thread

Yes, I did celebrate Columbus Day. He did absolutely nothing wrong and the long-term effects of his actions were splendid for the entire world. I think we should have Cortez Day, too…unless someone wants to argue we should have seen how a civilization which ripped out living human hearts and then ate the corpses would have developed.

Harvey Weinstein is just what happens when money becomes the most important thing in the world – he had control of bags of money, and so was allowed to get away with things poor people can’t. I know my fellow Conservatives will get angry with me over this, but the solution to this isn’t a host of new laws, but just one law: tax away excess wealth. Heck, don’t even call it “taxation”…call it what it would be, “confiscation”. Confiscate every cent over, say, $100 million – and then bundle it up in to $100,000.00 increments and give it out via a lottery system using SSN’s to random American citizen adults. This is Redistribution…a key element in a Distributist system. A hundred million dollar fortune is still quite a lot – we’d still have a host of rich people. But not so many people so rich that they can easily buy their way out of trouble…nor buy massive influence in government. And passing the cash around to regular folks would allow a host of new things to rise…things rich people can’t imagine, because they don’t care about. This is the way things work, by the way, people: freedom allows wealth to concentrate and then the concentrated wealth must be broken up to ensure the long-term health of the society. It was when the Romans stopped periodically breaking up the great concentrations of wealth that they started to die. When would the re-concentration begin? As soon as you finished redistribution…but the immense imbalance we have now would take a century to reproduce itself and, meanwhile, the redistribution would allow a lot of new blood to enter the ranks of the rich…new blood which, at least for a while, would not think of itself as special just because it has money.

Twitter banned an ad by GOP Senate Candidate Marsha Blackburn – the reason being that Blackburn made an anti-abortion statement that Twitter considers inflammatory. This, of course, is just Progressive fascism – and thing we’re used to. Twitter, being run by Progs, also didn’t have the wit to understand that the ban would just make everyone watch it on different platforms…Blackburn should send a thank you letter. I’ve seen the ad – Blackburn is no squish. We need her in the Senate, and having her as the replacement for Corker will just make it all that much better. I kinda imagine that this is what Amazona would say, if she ran for Senate.

Texans don’t seem to mind carrying guns around.

President Trump and Vice President Pence had laid out a strong plan for space exploration. Glenn Reynolds points out that it can help the national spirit when we take on such grand tasks. I agree – but I think we should advance things in the time line. Won’t really cost too much more money to, say, get us to Mars by 2027.

Starting to Catch a Cold Open Thread

UPDATE: We’re all safe here – all friends and family accounted for.

I had just finished watching Sink the Bismarck! – watching it because it is a cool movie and I’ve still got a bit of a thing for Dana Wynter. After it was over, I switched over to catch the local news for the weather before going to bed. They were reporting as I switched on that ever more police were heading towards the Mandalay Bay. That resort is about 10 miles as the crow flies and 13 as the car drives from me. The unfolding of the horror brought back memories of both 9/11 and, long way back, the Cleveland Elementary shootings in 1979.

I wound up very tired all through Monday because I didn’t get to sleep until about 1 am, and then promptly woke up with a nightmare…I can’t remember what it was, but it shocked me wide awake again for about an hour, I guess. It is just so very terrible…the Strip is a playground and it is for people 8 to 80. Yes, there is the seamy side of it, but also things for families and kids to do. It is also very, very safe – you never worry when you’re down there because police and casino security are ubiquitous and the whole place is constantly under electronic surveillance. And then this. And so very strange – the stories about the shooter just don’t fit anything we’ve experienced, at least so far. Of course, the authorities may be withholding key information as they continue their investigation. We’ll see. At all events, please say your prayers for the dead and wounded.

I had been mostly staring blankly at the novel – kinda stuck. Knew where I wanted the story to end, but couldn’t quite figure out how to get from where I was to there…then, last night, I just sat down and started plugging away. Only got down about 2,000 words, but I now know how to finish up this book and it’s going to be fantastic. Very fun, very unexpected ending. So, anyways, still having a grand time on the novel…hope to have it out by about May 1st.

Other than that, started feeling a bit light in the head Sunday morning…then a bit sinusy. Figured it was allergies until I talked to my wife after work – she’s plugged up and starting to cough. A Cold has Arrived! Sucks – but better to get it out of the way early in the season, I guess.

The NFL has mostly surrendered – a few jerks still out there kneeling, but the Powers That Be in the NFL clearly want this to go away. It might – but I don’t think it’ll ever be as it was, and if it ever is, at least not for a long while. The magic is gone – of course, we all saw it going for a while. This kneeling bit just ripped the blinders off. Did you know that the Chargers Quarterback, Phillip Rivers, will make $20,813,000.00 this year? Haven’t watched the last two weeks, but the Bolts are now 0-4. $20 million for one player and the team is utter garbage. Highest paid guy in the NFL this year is the Quarterback for the Lions: he’ll get $27,000,000.00. At least they are 3-1. But that seems a high price to pay for someone to toss a football around. And I’ve nothing against any of them making that money…but it does put them in a financial world that 99.9% of the fans will never approach. Where’s the connection? And then you get the guys who are making millions who are, well, rather creepy. Tattoos all over the place, freakish hair styles, lots of rumors (and some times not rumors) of nauseating behavior off the field. Just add to that disrespect for the flag of the nation which pours that kind of wealth on them, and you get turned off. Heck with them and heck with the sport – Baseball is still partially acceptable and my Cubs have a shot at the big dance. I’ll pay attention to that. And now that Vegas has a hockey team, maybe I’ll take the time to learn about the game and become a fan.

Any real military officer will tell you that logistics is everything – and the problem in Puerto Rico isn’t lack of attention and effort, but a simple problem of logistics. This, in turn, appears to be a huge problem because the government of Puerto Rico let infrastructure run down over the past few decades. A tropical island in the regular path of hurricanes should make hurricane survivability of infrastructure the highest priority. Puerto Rico didn’t.

Now, naturally, the MSM is trying to cook up a Katrina and blame it on Trump – and they are using the same template. Difference is that (a) Trump fights back and (b) his supporters also fight back. It has been a very vigorous pushback against the MSM Narrative about Puerto Rico. Our Fredcons are wringing their hands over it, as usual, but no one cares what they think.

Nicholas Kristof kept up the New York Times‘ century-long tradition of truckling to Communist tyranny this past week in North Korea.

Some are thinking that the Socialists are now the TEA Party of the left. A lot of jokes are being made about this, but in a certain sense, it is correct: the out-and-out Socialists are just taking the Democrats at their word and going to the logical conclusion. My hope is that the Democrats continue to drop the mask and start campaigning on what they really want. The Socialists might force them to it by 2020.

Open Thread

The Russian Collusion story seems to have wound up here:

Sources with knowledge of the ads tell CNN that they ranged from posts promoting gun rights and the Second Amendment to posts warning about what they said was the threat undocumented immigrants posed to American democracy.

Some ads promoted Black Lives Matter while others decried it, as the Washington Post reported Monday.

The apparent goal of the ads, the sources who spoke with CNN said, was to amplify political discord and fuel an atmosphere of incivility and chaos around the 2016 presidential campaign, not necessarily to promote one candidate or cause over another.

So, what we’ve got here is a foreign power seeking to sow division in the United States. Pardon me while I get my shocked face on. We all know that the whole Trump/Russia thing was bogus from start to finish – ginned up post-election likely to cover up the Obama Administration’s spying on Team Trump during the campaign.

The Democrats and the MSM (but I repeat myself) are still trying to gin up the hurricane damage in Puerto Rico as Trump’s Katrina – but, it won’t work. There is simply too much federal aid flowing to Puerto Rico.

Some reporting on the Equifax hack. My view: credit reports should be banned. To concentrate that much personal information in one place invites hacking. Using a person’s social security number as their main identifier is not just a security risk, it is a very stupid security risk. Ban them. Let banks actually get back to underwriting their loans. In 2017, just assume that everyone who wants your personal financial information has it – and just carefully monitor your credit activity for anything suspicious.

The Pen and Phone cuts both ways: Trump to issue executive order allowing insurance sales across State lines.

Steelers owner says he’s trying to stay out of politics. Too late. You had your chance when the first player knelt: you could have suspended or fired that guy and thus put the word out that politics has no place in Football. You tolerated it, and how it has blown up in your face. As an aside: I think our Progressives were expecting Trump to lose this fight because of a theory that we hick morons would choose Football over country. They really don’t understand us, at all.

We Must Fight These Culture Battles

The ostensible justification for kneeling during the anthem is because the United States is a racist nation and this is a way whereby the good and decent people can jar the conscience of us cave dwellers who don’t realize it. It is further asserted that we must allow such actions in the name of free speech. That such an assertions are utter nonsense is neither here nor there. That a player would be fined for merely overly celebrating in the End Zone, but can get away with this, shows what is really going on. Like all large, corporate entities, the NFL is entirely owned by the Progressive left – and thus there isn’t actual free speech (God help the player who kneels in memory of aborted children, for instance), but there are special protections for those who help the Progressive cause. And the Progressive cause is always and everywhere to tear down all things decent and all things that bind decent people into a Constitutional Republic.

This sort of thing goes back a long ways – I identify the defining moment as the debate over the P*** Christ work. Here was something disgusting and outrageous – something which insulted not just Christians, but all decent people. And yet the Progressives cheered it on – because it insulted. That was bad – but what was worse was that the Fredocons of the day also defended the actual thing; defended, that is, the right of someone to make such a vile display. As they are saying today about the kneeling players, so they were saying about the “art”: it must be allowed. It is free speech. We can’t in any way hinder it – even to condemn it in any meaningful way is wrong. The combination of Progressives and Fredocons worked to stifle any real push back against it – and so it went on with ever more outrageous things being done by Progressives under the cover of free speech until we are here today, where we are supposed to roll over for sports stars insulting the symbol of the nation which gave them their opportunity and great wealth.

When Trump inserted himself into the behavior of the players, it was the first time there was any meaningful pushback. I think a lot of people stood up and cheered. Finally, at long last, someone who mattered said what was on all normal minds: this is just wrong. It is a game; you’re supposed to be playing it; this isn’t time for you to be making political statements. Doubling the outrage is the fact that the players making the protest are reinforcing the vile lie that the United States is a racist nation. Trump pushed back – people cheered. And then, in a really beautiful thing to behold, the Progressives doubled and tripled down…to the point where, now, they are essentially saying that one must be an anti-patriot in order to be decent. It is a perfect set up: the issue is starkly set. All those who think the USA is evil will be on one side, all who think the USA good will be on the other. We’ll find out soon enough at the next elections which side is larger. I’m betting that “USA good” is the larger.

As that plays out, however, I think it important to take a moment to really think about those so-called Conservatives who refused the fight all those years…and who are more upset about Trump pushing back than they are about people insulting our flag and anthem. Just what is it they want to conserve? As far as I can tell, merely low corporate taxes and bombing stuff overseas from time to time. Every time the Progressives have done something disgusting to normal people (ie, things like “Bake the Cake” or making the Little Sister of the Poor pay fines), we’ve had plenty of Conservatives say that we can’t really fight back against this stuff. They might issue a mild dissent or rebuke over such things, but they aren’t out there at the barricades fighting back. They aren’t, that is, ever willing to risk their careers and their friendships with Progressives to actually do anything. When, for instance, the Little Sister of the Poor were to be fined for not knuckling under to Obama’s abortion mandate, we didn’t need a Fredocon lecture about separation of Church and State and then no action…we needed people to stand up and shout, “What the heck are you doing, you Progressive idiots!!!???”. We needed someone to get down and dirty with them – to call them out; to insult them; to ridicule the very idea that Little Sisters of the Poor should have this done to them. And we needed fight and fight and fight…we got, mild rebukes and well-wishes that the Little Sister might prevail after a long and expensive court battle.

At bottom, Trump is doing more actual Conservative work than the whole host of Conservatives have done since Reagan was in office – and more and more I realize that Reagan was nearly alone in his battles for Conservatism. Even a lot of his ostensible Conservative allies were forever trying to tone down or explain away Reagan’s vigorous, combative Conservatism. They are trying to do the same with Trump – but Trump is not only as much a fighter as Reagan, but he’s also a lot more rude. Politeness is better than rudeness, but when you’re dealing with people who deliberately look for ways to insult God, faith, family and country, perhaps politeness is played out? At all events, I’m going with Trump’s rudeness – at least it is a battle rather than a debacle.

And we must have a battle – and the crucial point right now is cultural. If we lose the culture battle, we’re eventually going to lose everything. It must be established that patriotism is good; that America is good; that the American people are good; that this nation is worthy of our love and devotion…and that faith and family are more important than the latest I-gadget or a growing GDP or our ability to drop a bomb. If we can once again get to a place where love of country; defense of faith; devotion to family are central to our national life, then we’ll win everything…we’ll eventually get all the rest that we want. Lose those things, and how in heck are you going to argue for lower taxes? And what would it matter if you happened to get Progressives to agree to lower taxes? The Progressives wish to destroy all that made America, America – and it starts with destroying our belief in those simple things which make decent life possible: family, faith, respect for law, charity towards one another, unity in times of crisis. A divided, dispirited, hate-filled and dependent population of slaves is the goal of the Progressives – a population, in short, which can be easily manipulated and controlled as the Progressives continually experiment on us. We Conservatives want a united, hopeful people who help each other in charity while working hard for their own improvement. We don’t get that by letting the cultural things slide while working on keeping the corporate tax rate low, folks.

The Great Turning Point

A bit from Mark Steyn:

The sexual-identity left and the Islamic imperialists have certain things in common: both dislike having to listen to opposing views, and so are ever more openly hostile to freedom of speech. Yet deep down both parties know these two surging forces of cultural evolution cannot co-exist – that the Lancashire Constabulary Transgender Unit marching behind the Forty-Four Ways to Slaughter the Infidel Study Group in the Lancashire Pride Parade is merely a passing phase: It’s as if the World and Opposite World were wedged into the same physical space like overlaid telephone area codes. One will shrink, the other will expand.

Which would you bet on? As I say here, diversity is an interim stage, and, as we already see in certain parts of London and Brussels and Malmö and Toulouse and Frankfurt and on and on, what comes after diversity is the grim uniformity of Islam. And, as I say here, in the end the brave, transgressive left will give up even their bedrock freedom – sexual identity – as they have abandoned all those older, quainter freedoms like free speech. In the face of growing Islamic hostility, men will cease to marry men, and men will cease to be women, and policemen will quietly mothball the bi-cruiser.

Some years back, my father handed me a copy of Hilaire Belloc’s The Great Heresies. Given Belloc’s vigorous Catholicism, I don’t think the book ever got a large amount of interest. A lot of people probably thought when it came out, “hey, its just a Catholic mouthing off about silly heresies” and took no great notice of it. But it is, to me, one of the most important books written in the past century. It very much repays reading and after reading it, you’ll have a vastly better understanding of where we came from and why we’re in our current position. Steyn’s article got me thinking of this passage from Belloc’s book:

Strange as it may seem, there are a certain number of highly educated men, European gentlemen, who have actually joined Islam, that is, who are personal converts to Mohammedanism. I myself have known and talked to some half-dozen of them in various parts of the world, and there are a very much larger number of similar men, well instructed Europeans, who, having lost their faith in Catholicism or in some form of Protestantism in which they were brought up, feel sympathy with the Mohammedan social scheme although they do not actually join it or profess belief in its religion. We constantly meet men of this kind today among those who have travelled in the East.

The other day I was listening to a show on Catholic radio and the host was discussing a conversation he had had with a German some while back. The gist of it was that the host explained to the German that his country fell for Nazism – and is now being swamped by Islamism – because it gave up it’s ancestral, Christian faith and thus could not stand against new faiths, of whatever sort. The host contrasted Germany with Poland and pointed out that Poland remained Catholic – strongly so – and so was able to endure a century of division and foreign rule and then, in turn, rejected and fought against Nazism and Communism…and today still stands firm against Muslim inroads.

The problem, you see, isn’t that Muslims are moving to Europe – nor that non-Americans are moving to the United States – but that the people of Europe (or, more accurately, their leaders) have lost their faith and thus do not convert the new arrivals. It wouldn’t matter in the least if the primary ethnic group of the United States in 2117 were Nigerian provided that said people had been fully converted to the American ideal. Just as it wouldn’t matter if in 2117 the primary ethnic group of Europe were Arab provided said people had been converted to the European ideal. The slight difference is that the American ideal is embodied in the Declaration of Independence while the European ideal is embodied in Christianity – most specifically Catholicism, but at least as long as it is Christian, it is European.

As Belloc noted – and the book was written more than 80 years ago – there were already highly educated, but faithless, Europeans who were already in line with Islam. Not so much in believing the whole run of Islamic belief, but in believing that it was superior to their ancestral beliefs and was better suited to the human condition. But the catch – and they didn’t see it then, or now – is that the way Europe is only happens because it is Christian. Had the Arian heresy triumphed in the 4th century, then Europe would not have become what it became. Arianism was very much like Islam in that it denied the ultimate divinity of Christ and thus, had it won, European civilization today would likely be very much like Muslim civilization is (my bet is that Islam never would have arisen, as such: Mohammed would have just become an Arian). But Europe in the 4th century remained Catholic Christian and so developed along the lines we know from history – but now Europe is no longer Catholic Christian (my guess is that, overall, no more than 20% of the European population is Christian) and so it has nothing to fight against Islam with…nothing to fight for, that is. And given a choice, I believe the European (and American) Ruling Class would much prefer a triumphant Islam to a revived Christianity.

Part of this is because Islam does have the appeal of simplicity. Remember, it’s primary disagreement with Christian dogma is the divinity of Christ. You’ll not find anyone write or speak with more respect and reverence for Christ (and his mother) than a Muslim…but he denies that Christ is God. Given that Christ isn’t God in the Muslim view, there’s no need for all those sacraments which, especially, the Catholic Church maintains. You don’t need a priest. You can pray anywhere (there are Mosques, of course, but as you can easily see just by looking, a Muslim can discharge his religious duties anywhere quite simply). Islam seems clean and easy – it is certainly much easier to understand than Christian dogmas such as a the Trinity. Additionally, most modern, Progressive ideologies firmly reject the idea of free will – and Islam is very much about all being God’s will while humans only do what they were ordained to do. If the Progressive West is to have a religion, Islam is more likely to be it than anything else.

There would be not much to it, you see? I can easily see our radical feminists adopting the burka in order to free themselves from the “male gaze”. Official Muslim condemnation of usury would be seen as a nice anti-Capitalist touch (it isn’t actually true that interest isn’t charged in Islam, by the way). Your basic Ruling Class person won’t have to give up much to convert to Islam. They’d still be rich and in charge. True, there would be no more topless women on European beaches and popular culture would be highly constrained, but that wouldn’t prevent a rich person from indulging in all sorts of oddities behind the walls of his secured palace; nor in setting aside special areas where sin is abundantly available, but only for the select few (the Ruling Class doesn’t really like the idea that the unwashed masses are currently able to get into swank areas, anyway). It would go badly for open homosexuality – but in the hierarchy of victim status, Muslim trumps gay anyways; and it’s not like you couldn’t still be gay, it would be just that the annual Pride parade would be cancelled.

If you wonder why our Ruling Class, especially in Europe, appears utterly blind to the threat, look no further than the fact that they have little to fear from it. It isn’t their way of life that will be radically altered, but yours. And they are quite ok with that. You might like your Christianity and your Constitution, but such things are entirely meaningless to the Ruling Class. They like power and wealth and are determined to keep it – and if that means importing a new set of voters and eventually joining them, they won’t bat an eye at it. This is why it is crucial that we concentrate on what is most important, and not allow ourselves to get side-tracked into blind alleys. It isn’t, ultimately, the Muslim refugee who is your worry, but a Ruling Class that doesn’t like you.

This makes the election last year stand out all the more starkly. Trump, warts and all, is an American patriot. He loves his country – as it is (or, more accurately, as it was a few decades back). He wants to make it that way, again – strong, dynamic, filled with reverence for what we’ve done and determination to outdo the past. I don’t know if Trump knows the ultimate wellsprings of his nation’s greatness, but he certainly understands that those who have been running the show largely reject whatever it is that made America great. He instinctively knows that if we give up what we are, we give up all we have. Something else will replace it – because a vacuum of any type will always eventually get filled. Getting after those who are in charge thus becomes the primary effort of everyone who cares to save the nation. And anyone, of whatever alleged political complexion, who doesn’t want to get after those in charge has effectively ranged himself on the other side.

The Great Turning Point is this: that we’ll either chase the Ruling Class from power, or they’ll hand us over, bound hand and foot, to a successor civilization. Back in the 20th century, they wanted to hand us over to Socialist totalitarians, now they’ll just as easily hand us over to Islam. In either case, they don’t care because they are certain they’ll still remain in charge. That they might well be wrong about this is immaterial – it is what they believe (and, come what may, after the end of our civilization most of them will still be on top…just as in the various turns in other civilizations a traitorous Ruling Class still managed to ingratiate itself with the new rulers…plenty of Byzantines converted to Islam and helped run the Ottoman Empire after 1453, after all; the Russian Imperial general Brusilov became a Bolshevik; the German officer corps sold itself to Hitler for as little as 100,000 marks a year…). Getting rid of these people in charge is Job One. It is really the only job we have – and if that means sticking by Trump and just generally fighting and pushing back all the time, that is what it will have to be. It’ll be worth it, if we win.