James Crossley's blog Contact: jgcrossley10 - AT - yahoo - DOT - co - DOT - uk

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

No, no Joe

I try to avoid dealing with the following kinds of opinions as they tend to remind me of schoolkids looking for attention and one part of me really wants to think such people are just a great prank (I mean there can't really be such nutcases as those below?) but given that such views are echoing in biblical studies and as these right wing extremists could easily be feeding in to making certain extremist powers look positively moderate then I thought I might as well for what it is worth. This is also in the context of some of the inhumane (not to say utterly impractical) attitudes shown by bloggers (in the wider sense) on the deaths of innocent Lebanese civilians. I still to this day cannot quite believe the variety of political attitudes I have discovered since entering the weird world of biblical studies.

Anyway Joe Cathey provides a link to someone called Doc Russia, packed full of illogic. But Joe says:

Doc Russia has a very good post here – and to top it off he has a great quote from one of my all time favorite movies – Aliens. You may not agree with him – but you can’t beat his logic!

Here's a little commentary on Doc Russia:

Every terrorist they kill now...
...is one less we will have to face later.

That kind of sums up my feelings on the Israeli actions in Lebanon.

Yes, this won't lead to a reaction and couldn't possibly lead to extremist reactions. Any terrorist might even just give up now, as in Iraq. And on a side issue, there will be no one wanting to resort to extremist actions after the deaths of innocent Lebanese.

The simple fact of the matter is that muslims are out to destroy western civilization. I intentionally didn't say "extremist muslims are out to destroy western civilization" because that is a mythical group. Extremist muslims are like extremist Christians, only with reversed ratios. What I mean by that is that while there is the rare Jim Jones out there for the christians, the most of them are pretty decent, honest, and simple folk who abhor violence...you have the rare, tolerant muslim, but the most of them are extremists, and when the extremists become the norm, there are no more extremists.

I've lived in several places with a high Muslim population and lived in areas that are predominantly Muslim. I walked the streets, went to their shops, said hello to my neighbours. Little did I know they were only seconds away from rising up and destroying western civilisation. How come I never saw masses of extremists? Were they just too crafty for poor old me? Were they all lying when speaking to me? Without any social survey Doc Russia KNOWS this as fact so I stand corrected by a collective mind reader. But wait, more conventional proof:

Want proof? Well, despite what Mel gibson may say, the fact of the matter is that almost all of the religiously rooted violence in the world is taking place between muslims, and fill-in-th-blanks. Muslims and Christians fighting in Bosnia. Muslims and Jews fighting in and around Israel. Muslims and Hindus fighting in the Cashmere. There is also muslim-spawned violence going on in Africa, Malaysia, France, the Netherlands, and other areas. Additionally, I cannot think of a single area where Christians and Jews are fighting, Or Hindus and Christians are fighting, or Seikhs and Jews are fighting, or where anybody else is fighting for religious reasons that does not have muslims as part of the mix.

Ah, that old one. The history of human kind has of course had its acts violence and war. I mean I don't want to sound patronizing (make your own mind up if you believe me on that one) but haven't there been wars involving non-Muslims? And atheists? And God knows what. My history may be pretty patchy here, but wasn't there bloodshed before the rise of Islam? I can't remember so someone help me out here. I mean, if there were periods when Islam wasn't violent and Christianity (or any other religion) was, doesn't this mean that suddenly in the modern period Islam has become bad or something? Devil or magic or something? I don't know how else this could be the case but it must be, right?

Ok, enough of the sarcasm (for a moment). The blindingly obvious point is that there are a whole range of underlying reasons for religious violence. Strangely such people who blame Islam don't (conveniently) bother to see what the causes of this might be. No looking to, oh I don't know, the Palestinian situation, or Western support for this or that favourite Middle Eastern dictator.

...not to mention a complete ignorance of certain violent Christians running certain countries. No, best forget about that one, eh?

Furthermore the world at large has come to accept terrorism as a legitimate form of fighting. Nobody shrieks about the systematic deliberate targeting of civilians by terrorists all the time. No, we only hear about civilian casualties when they are due to shooting at bastards who target civilians, and some civilian gets caught in the blast radius...

That's either a) a lie or b) utter ignorance. My guess is that recent news on terrorism is near impossible to avoid so I go for a)

And wait for the 'I'm not racist but...' argument...

As such, I have absolutely zero sympathy for the Lebanese. Don't get me wrong, I have some Lebanese friends, but the Lebanese as a whole have simply either been unable or unwilling to get rid of such villians in their midst. As such, they have given tacit approval for the actions of Hezbollah. For an analogy; if your neighbor refuses to discipline his problem child for setting fire to your garden again and again, he has effectively condoned his childs activities, and has not even the right to act suprised, shocked, or insulted when you decide that enough is enough, and you bill him for damages. Since Hezbollah is part of the lebanon government, then Lebanon is responsible for everything they do or fail to do, including disarming. If the minutemen were to start conducting cross border raids into Mexico to get the Mexicans to secure their border (which they subsequently do), it would be entirely within Mexico's rights as a sovereign nation to attack the US military if the minutemen kept raiding Mexico, and the US government did nothing to stop the minutemen.

Well, there's an in-depth knowledge of Lebanese society! As if there was no objection to Hizbullah in Lebanon?! I wonder what this person thinks of the recent history of Lebanon too, how this fits in with the schoolkid model? I'm re-reading that logic too, and I'm sure I've heard it before ('terrorist' is one word coming to mind...)

So no one has ever gone on to Lebanese lands and provoked them, eh? Hang on, what are we saying here - if someone goes over your border you can retaliate? I wonder if there are any examples of that which spring to mind...?

Recently we all heard of a load of innocent children dying in Lebanon. But zero sympathy, zero sympathy...very good post, very good post...can't beat the logic, can't beat the logic...zero sympathy, zero sympathy...

In the end, the killing of civilians either by accident or design is viewed quite differently depending upon who is the actor. As such, we are not winnning the hearts and minds by sparing civilians. We are in the impossible situation of being expected to avoid civilian casualties while still being chastised as morally inferior to the terrorists because they are fighting for "root causes." There is no way that a society so terminally entrenched will ever change their mind. So, as CPL Keeney used to say, "since they won't let us win their hearts and minds, it's time to burn their fucking village down."

Very good post, Joe? Can't beat his logic, Joe?

But if you thought that was 'very good' and if you thought you couldn't beat that logic, then you'll love this:

So, my dear readers, I am advocating the implementation of what I call the 'Ripley Strategy.' The 'Ripley Strategy' is named for the "Ripley" character played by Sigourney Weaver in the movie 'Aliens.' Ripley is iinterrogated, given her prior experience with the Aliens, as to what she thinks the best course of action is. Her reponse is the most pure of American simplicity..

"Nuke it from orbit; it's the only way to be sure"

Not enough?


No UN security council, No mulit-bi-uni-lateral talks. No threats, no negotiating. Iran is the prime mover behind muslim terrorists, and muslim terrorists are the prime causes of violence on this planet in our day, so I say that , we Nuke Iran first, and then instead of our usual policy of asking permission, we instead ask for forgiveness for making Lake Tehran with it's radioactive glass shores.

Once that happens, we will have to just deal with gas prices going up. OTOH, Hezbollah will have had a lot of it's resources cut off, and that will bring them rascals under control quick, fast, and in a hurry. North Korea will also have to come to grips with the idea that if we were willing to nuke an oil-rich country, we will definitely nuke one that has none. We should cap it off by saying that any further missile tests will be viewed as an act of war, and let North korea figure another way out of it's mess. Syria will also suddenly go belly up for us. If not.... well, damascus steel was overrated, anyway.

We are past the time for half-measures.

Nuke 'em from orbit; it's the only way to be sure.

Well there's more but you get the picture. Firstly a minor point: Joe obviously sees this as something useful and worth reading and we've all read his posts on Islam. This makes me wonder how on earth he approaches history (he is a historian of ancient Israel) because all methodology goes out of the window when it comes to recent history. But much more seriously, is it not alarming that someone who studies religion thinks such posts are 'very good' and logical?

I don't know if the Doc is a Christian but am I alone in seeing the irony in "nukin'" masses of human beings while accusing others of being violent??? Joe has been quoting the famous British socialist author George Orwell and I reckon we're due of few more on the basis of this logic.

Like I said I try to avoid these types but being endorsed in biblical studies is disturbing.

Oh, and a metaphorical pat on the back for anyone who gets the musical reference in the title, 'No, no Joe'.


Blogger Jim said...

You are right. I can't add anything to what you've said. And I can't subtract anything from it either.

August 01, 2006

Blogger Rick Sumner said...

No, No Joe is a tune by Hank Williams, the lyrics of which are quite germane here.

*metaphorically pats himself on the back*

August 01, 2006

Blogger James Crossley said...

Good call Rick!

August 01, 2006

Blogger steph said...

Ah, Relief. I was stewing over his ridiculous posts today and his mate's. Mind you if either of them really has a doctorate, they found them not far from the weetbix packet. What about Orwell? ha ha. Making friends with the enemy...

August 01, 2006

Anonymous Anonymous said...

James, Thanks for your response. Doc Russia was an awful read.

August 01, 2006

Blogger Michael Westmoreland-White said...

It's bad enough when such drivel gets endorsed by TV preachers, but when this "logic" gets endorsed by a biblical scholar, it makes you want to rend your garments in grief and shame at the blasphemy!

I know Joe Cathey deals professionally with the Hebrew Scriptures, but does he stay in the Holy War passages and never find the nonviolence of Jeremiah or 2nd Isaiah? And surely he's at least READ the Sermon on the Mount? So, how can he approve this nihilism?
And, pretend for a second that some lives are worth more than others in God's sight (they aren't, but this is a thought experiment), doesn't it bother Joe Cathey AT ALL that Lebanon, especially SOUTH Lebanon is home to the largest % of Christians of any nation in the Middle East? (Oh, I was forgetting his nasty post smearing Dr. Martin Accad of the Arab Baptist Seminary in Beirut!)

The inherent evil of Muslims? The first nation to recognize the U.S. after we declared independence was MOROCCO. One of our earliest treaties as a young nation was the Treaty of Tripoli (which, by the way, assured the Muslims that they could trust the U.S. because we weren't a "Christian nation" that would only deal fairly with other Christians). Throughout the Middle Ages Jews found better treatment in Muslim-controlled lands than in "Christian" ones.

Muslims as inherently violent? This, reprinted on Cathey's blog when he CONSTANTLY advocates the NRA's position on guns???

I weep at the state of U.S. churches.

August 01, 2006

Blogger metalepsis said...

You could have used the American baseball allusion, “say it ain’t so Joe” for this post.

It is amazing this sort of stuff can come from educated people. The irony is that it seems that those in biblical studies who are of the secular mindset seem to be more concerned with how their rhetoric affects the wider world, where those of the more confessional ilk just don’t give a hoot. Many Israelis who are in the thick of this mess even have more clarity. Here: http://billmon.org/archives/002533.html

August 01, 2006

Blogger James Crossley said...

Some good points there Michael with which I can only agree.

Metalepsis (if I may call you that): I've never explicitly thought of the rhetorical stuff along the secular/non-secular lines. That might well work as a generalisation. I've often pushed my kinds of reasoning in debates over the implications and I have found that there is a lot of sympathy when it isn't them.

August 02, 2006


Post a Comment

<< Home