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Cave paintings, then and now.

On holiday in south of France where there are many ‘stone age’ cave paintings. Our ‘primitive’ ancestors left many like these behind. They show great skill and sensitivity, and excellent observational skills, despite very basic technology.

image

In a modern day cave, an underground car park at the site of a Roman ampitheatre in Cahors, I saw the following work of art.

imageBecause, you see, we are so much wiser and better than our primitive ancestors…as the evidence so clearly shows…or not, as the case may be. Apart from anything else, the artist here has the bulb of the penis twice the size of a testicle, the exact opposite of what we find in nature.

The great scholar and Christian apologist CS Lewis wrote about ‘chronological snobbery’, the conceit that we are better than our ancestors. Who can guess what our descendants, if any, will think of us?

Ken Livingstone, Socialism and Hitler

The highly intelligent, determined socialist revolutionary Ken Livingstone is in the news again for comment he made about Hitler and the Jews, basically ‘….Hitler was a zionist in favour of Jews going to their own homeland until he went mad and killed 6 million of them.’

He’s clever, and his views on ‘Palestine’ are mainstream left, so I don’t think this will be the end of his political career. Some version of ‘I misspoke/ was misunderstood’ will about cover it. But what interests me is his comment that Hitler ‘went mad’ at a point in time and that this explains his misdeeds.

First, in the materialist world view generally held by hard line socialists like Livingstone and his mate Corbyn, all is matter , our minds are the by products of cosmic accidents, so there is no free will and therefore no good or evil, or moral accountability. Livingstone’ assertion that Hitler ‘went mad’ should be understood in this context.

But Adolph Hitler WAS NOT insane. He acted on his convictions. He had a clear set of goals which derived from principles which he had arrived at by a process of thought. And he did not act alone-how could he have? One individual suffering mental illness ( say bipolar disease or cannabis psychosis) may grab a knife and kill a few before being stopped, but Hitler, like his fellow socialist Stalin, went a little further than that. He, and others, built a movement. Writing German National Socialism off as the work of a madman is a cop out. The reality is far more frightening.

Hitler cannot be written off as a madman. He was a National Socialist acting on a set of convictions. Amongst which was that humanity had evolved by a struggle for survival. He made certain choices and rejected others.

My study copy of Mein Kampf ‘ My Struggle’ is kept in the downstairs toilet library next to that other world changing book with the word ‘struggle’ in the title, Origin of Species: of the survival of favoured races in the struggle for life. Darwinism’s contribution to the National Socialist’s world view is a secret hiding in plain view.

Why the Crusades were right

Serious free thinking from an atheist

Listen to the end if you can. Stefan knew he would get a lot of disapproval for this, and he did. Pray for him if you can.

British Muslims to vote to remain in EU

Quelle surprise. For those outside the UK, the Guardian is widely regarded ads the in-house newsletter of the BBC.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/mar/29/british-muslims-europe-remain-brexit

For those who haven’t yet even noticed, let alone worked out, the supportive association between the ideological secularist Left (exemplified by The Guardian) and Islam (which embodies many of the values which the Left most hates about Christianity) Peter Hitchens’ books ‘The Cameron Delusion’ and ‘The Rage Against God’ are illuminating.

 

 

More common sense from an atheist

For a philosophical atheist, Stefan Molyneux talks an awful lot of good common sense.

 

This post-Brussels bombing video is  bit long at 45 minutes but worth listening right to the end. A number of telling points about the tax-theft funded European Welfare State (which as well as sucking in migrants from poorer countries is eugenically depressing average IQ by discouraging high achieving tax payers from having children while encouraging low achiever benefit claimants to have more and have them younger) the post-colonial white guilt that stops us calling a spade a spade, the fundamental incompatibility of Islam and European civilisation and how a mentally comatose and shockingly badly led Europe is running out of time to save herself.

What both encourages and saddens me about Stefan is the extent to which he fails to realise that it is the secularism he advocates which has done this. I think he half knows this but can’t quite admit it. He should read my Kindle novel ‘Darwin’s Adders: A Chronicle of Pagan England 2089’ which addresses a number of these issues. Still, respect.

The Night Manager and Brussels bombing-a dreadful juxtaposition

Like 8 million others, I have been watching The Night Manager on BBC . More on that later. The British establishment involved in Middle East arms dealing, feeding war and oppression. Very believable (look up UK/Saudi arms sales)

9964945-high-_595_Mini Logo TV white - Gallery

And now the disciples of Muhammad have done what they do yet again, in Brussels.

Brussels_Metro_dam_3598908b

Talking about it on the radio this morning, Michael Buerk asking about security versus liberty, asked ‘should we give up our values?’

We already did. That’s the problem. The one thing the BBC and the rest of the Establishment WILL NOT DO is examine the roots of violence in the Quran. The violent jihadists are the authentic followers of the teaching and example of Muhammed. And the leftists have welcomed them in their millions into Europe with open arms.

Read the Quran. Do not be deceived. A ‘radicalised’ Muslim is one who has read the Quran and taken it as his rule of life. There is absolutely no equivalence with the New Testament and Christianity, which was the basis of all that is good about Europe’s values, and which we have thrown away.

 

Our DNA is similar to bananas

We often hear claims that human and ape DNA is very similar, and that this supports evolution. In fact the claim is very deceptive on various levels. Estimates of similarity are based on protein coding genes and vary from around 85% to 98%, the non-protein coding DNA (no longer called ‘junk’ as it is nearly all transcribed and has complex purposes we don’t yet understand) is not claimed to be so similar, besides which the non-common DNA is still millions of base pairs different. And there is no theoretical let alone observable way to get from a chimp to a man by DNA mistakes (mutations). The actual scientific observations tell us that apes are apes and men are men, and as far as our observations and the fossil record go, this has always been so.

Anyway, this item about human and banana DNA caught my eye. Humans and bananas share about 50% of DNA in common.

http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/cancer-diagnosis_banana-skins-can-help-identify-the-stages-of-melanoma/41946482

>>>>>

Human skin and banana peels have something in common: they produce the same enzyme when attacked. By studying fruit, Swiss researchers have come up with an accurate method for diagnosing the stages of melanoma, a form of skin cancer. 

When bananas age they become covered in black spots caused by the enzyme tyrosinase. It is a natural browning process common among certain organisms, including food. This same enzyme also plays a role in the type of skin cancer known as melanoma. 

This cancer’s tell-tale spots are the result of a malfunction in the regulation of tyrosinase. The malfunction disrupts the pigmentation of the skin by melanin, the body’s natural protection against the sun.

<<<<<<<

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Interesting, although whether this discovery will be much use remains to be seen. As it happens, my other blog www.dermoscopy.wordpress.com is mainly about dermoscopy for skin cancer diagnosis, a well proven technique which is not being used as much as it ought to be.

It throws light on the fact that many very profound biological operating systems are common across most or all of the created order of living things because they are indispensable. A huge amount of the DNA sequences shared in common across the plant and animal kingdoms come under this heading, like the tyrosine mentioned in this item. So, we have a lot of basic biochemistry in common with bananas and other food plants.

This is exactly what creationism predicts.

 

 

 

 

Peter Tatchell right about something important

Having recent posted to agree with Giles Fraser (with whom I often disagree) I thought Peter Tatchell deserved the credit for saying something right. The following is copied verbatim from Peter Hitchens’ Mail on Sunday blog.

 

Peter Tatchell (again) is Right. The ‘Gay Cake’ case is about liberty, not discrimination

Not for the first time, I must praise Peter Tatchell, the militant campaigner for the rights of homosexuals, for his courage and honesty. Mr Tatchell was badly beaten some years ago in an attempt to protest against Robert Mugabe’s policies, an act which required considerable physical bravery. And he took part willingly in a Channel Four programme I made some years ago about increasing threats to freedom of speech, criticising police for heavy handed treatment of a couple who had expressed unfashionable views about homosexuality. Mr Tatchell loathed what the couple had said. yet he defended them. He understood the basic principle of liberty, that you can defend someone’s freedom to say something you don’t like.

So many campaigners for the fashionable causes of the Left simply don’t get this, but Mr Tatchell does, and his good example deserves our praise.

Now he has publicly changed his mind on the case of the ‘Gay Cake’ (this affair is explained at length below)

 

Mr Tatchell says:

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/feb/01/gay-cake-row-i-changed-my-mind-ashers-bakery-freedom-of-conscience-religion

His key words are: ‘… the court erred by ruling that Lee was discriminated against because of his sexual orientation and political opinions. His cake request was refused not because he was gay, but because of the message he asked for.’ (my emphasis-SH)

He also goes to the heart of the matter when he says : ‘This finding of political discrimination against Lee sets a worrying precedent. Northern Ireland’s laws against discrimination on the grounds of political opinion were framed in the context of decades of conflict. They were designed to heal the sectarian divide by preventing the denial of jobs, housing and services to people because of their politics. There was never an intention that this law should compel people to promote political ideas with which they disagreed.’

And he rightly issues this warning about the implications of the judgement: ‘The judge concluded that service providers are required to facilitate any “lawful” message, even if they have a conscientious objection. This raises the question: should Muslim printers be obliged to publish cartoons of Mohammed? Or Jewish ones publish the words of a Holocaust denier? Or gay bakers accept orders for cakes with homophobic slurs? If the Ashers verdict stands it could, for example, encourage far-right extremists to demand that bakeries and other service providers facilitate the promotion of anti-migrant and anti-Muslim opinions. It would leave businesses unable to refuse to decorate cakes or print posters with bigoted messages. In my view, it is an infringement of freedom to require businesses to aid the promotion of ideas to which they conscientiously object. Discrimination against people should be unlawful, but not against ideas.

I agree wholeheartedly, and made a similar point some time ago(see the end of this article).

Most of you will know that  a bakery in Northern Ireland, owned and run by Christians, was taken to court by Gareth Lee, with the assistance of the Northern Ireland ‘Equality Commission’ for refusing to bake a cake iced with (among other things) a contentious statement of opinion, namely  ‘Support Gay Marriage’ .

Here’s an approving summary of the judgement by Joshua Rozenberg (who I cannot resist mentioning here is married to Melanie Phillips, the commentator for ‘The Times’ and panellist on ‘The Moral Maze’ on BBC Radio 4, who many people think of as a conservative, but who is (or at least was) inclined to insist that she is really a liberal distressed by the views of her fellow-liberals).

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/may/20/gay-cake-ruling-equality-northern-ireland

I think Mr Rozenberg is too happy about this . The Judge’s view that ‘the correct comparison would have been with a heterosexual person ordering a cake that said “support heterosexual marriage”’is gravely mistaken. The comparison would be with an openly and actively sexual liberationist baker being asked to bake a cake which said ‘Gay marriage is wrong’ or ‘Gay sex is sinful’.  I would absolutely support such a baker’s freedom to refuse such an order. (my emphasis-SH)

I’ve always thought the court’s attitude was plain silly.  The bakers say they didn’t know (which can’t be proved)  or care (which could be proved easily by the same person asking them to bake a cake without any contentious message on it) about the sexuality of the person giving the order, and would have baked him a cake, as such, without hesitation.

https://www.courtsni.gov.uk/en-GB/Judicial%20Decisions/SummaryJudgments/Documents/Court%20Delivers%20Judgment%20in%20Ashers%20Bakery%20Case/j_j_Summary%20of%20judgment%20-%20Ashers%20Bakery.htm

The full judgement is here for those interested

http://www.courtsni.gov.uk/en-GB/Judicial%20Decisions/PublishedByYear/Documents/2015/[2015]%20NICty%202/j_j_2015NICty2Final.htm

There’s a curious passage in this (which I think Mr Rozenberg doesn‘t get quite right  when he says ‘Brownlie found that Ashers must have known that Lee was gay.’) . The official case report says: ‘ it must have been abundantly clear during those discussions that the plaintiff supported gay marriage and that in all the circumstances the 2nd defendant must either consciously or unconsciously have had the knowledge or perception that the plaintiff was gay and/or was associated with others who are gay.’

Well, yes, indeed, but it is quite possible to support the causes of homosexual equality without being homosexual. Next,  this does not give any reason to assume that, even if the person involved was himself homosexual, this fact influenced the bakers’ decision.  Our knowledge, especially our unconscious knowledge, must not be assumed to have led us into an act of unfairness unless this has been proved by other means.  I should have thought the only proof of this would have been a refusal by Ashers to bake a cake, without any message on it, ordered by someone whom they knew to be homosexual. If there is any evidence of Ashers having done this, I have not seen or heard of it.

That would surely need to be proven in other ways before anyone could assert it. In which event, the case revolves not around the fair treatment of homosexuals, which the law plainly requires – but about the freedom to decline to publish or endorse opinions with which we disagree, which is fundamental to freedom of speech and the press.

 

Imagine if ‘The Guardian’ could be forced by law to publish a column by me. If you think that ludicrous, then you must say the same of this judgement, with its wholly mistaken concentration on the sale of the cake, and its apparent inability to see the role of the bakers as publishers. How many cakes bearing contentious messages about controversial issues, I wonder, are ordered in UK bakers in any given year?

I strongly believe that the complainant could easily have found  other bakers willing to bake the required cake with the required declaration, so it is hard to cast Ashers (who as far as I know make their conservative Christian position publicly clear) in the role of censors.  This could only be the case if they held a total monopoly of cake-baking which they certainly do not.  The issue was about one person being forced to endorse in public an opinion which he did not support.

The proposed cake took the form of sponge topped with sugar, but it was for legal purposes a poster or placard in the form of a cake, which Ashers were being required to print and publish, albeit in the form of sugar.

If the law can compel any printer or publisher or indeed any person, to print and publish sentiments with which he or she does not agree, then an important liberty is at an end. (my emphasis-SH) For this purpose, Ashers were a publisher.

In some ways it is even more important than the freedom to say what you want. Authoritarian societies, which are bad, silence opposition. This is evil, but still leaves people able to maintain private independence without having to make public self-abasements. Totalitarian societies, which are worse, require their citizens to shout and speak and sing slogans supporting their rulers, and to display flags on their homes endorsing those rulers. I have seen this done. It makes the flesh creep. Such requirements eat at the soul. I have always remembered Christabel Bielenberg’s trick (recounted in her book about living as an Englishwoman married to a German in the Hitler state, ‘The Past is Myself’) for avoiding saying ‘Heil Hitler’.  She would say ‘Drei Liter!’ (‘Three Litres!’) so emphatically and with such feeling that nobody noticed. Those who read the account many years later may have smiled, but I always thought it a very serious matter. This is how you remain free inside.

As I wrote here in July 2014: ‘I don’t care about same-sex marriage. It doesn’t matter. It’s the collapse of heterosexual marriage that’s important. But it does matter when triumphalist sexual revolutionaries force their opponents to act against their consciences. So please note this bit of the row about the Belfast Christian bakers who declined to bake a gay-themed cake, whose icing would have proclaimed support for same-sex nuptials.  Another baker, by the way, happily complied with the order.

But that’s not enough. The Christian bakers may now be pursued through the courts. I cannot see how this can be called a free country if the law has any say in such matters. If you can be forced by law to publish a view you disagree with on a cake, then presumably you can be forced to do so in a book, a newspaper or a TV programme.’ (emphasis mine-SH)

Mr Tatchell is right. The judgement was mistaken<<<<<

post copied and pasted without alteration from Peter Hitchen’s blog.

 

Was the judgment ‘mistaken’? I would prefer to say that the judgment was profoundly unjust, discriminatory, prejudicial and tyrannical. I doubt it was mistaken in intent (even if mistaken in law), since there is a clear and persistent anti Christian agenda in this country, which is well served by this wicked judgment.

 

 

Giles Fraser gets something right

CAUTION. VERY DISTURBING IMAGE FURTHER DOWN. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO SEE IT

I have sometimes criticised the Reverend Giles Fraser harshly here, and I don’t intend to back pedal over that concerning specific issues. However, my attention was drawn to something he just wrote in the Guardian, and I read it. Fair’s fair, Fraser wrote something very good here and I applaud him for doing so.

He wrote about the senior Nazi Adolf Eichman, who was hanged for his role in organising the mass transport of Jews to be exterminated in Hitler’s ‘Final Solution’.

The item here is well worth reading in full, its not very long

 

eichmann

In prison awaiting execution for his crimes, begging for mercy, a mercy denied to his victims, he wrote to the Israeli Prime Minister in a letter that has just been released…..

“There is a need to draw a line between the leaders responsible and the people like me forced to serve as mere instruments in the hands of the leaders,” the presidency quoted Eichmann’s letter as saying.

“I was not a responsible leader, and as such do not feel myself guilty,” the German wrote.

“I am not able to recognise the court’s ruling as just, and I ask, Your Honour Mr President, to exercise your right to grant pardons, and order that the death penalty not be carried out.”

The letter was signed and dated: “Adolf Eichmann Jerusalem, May 29, 1962.”

He was denied clemency and hanged at about midnight on 31 May.

If Eichmann died without coming to God on his knees begging for mercy, as seems probable from the lack of insight and genuine repentance in this letter, and if Jesus was telling the truth, then he went to Hell where he will suffer for all eternity. One of his severest torments will be that of knowing that he was wrong and could have received forgiveness if only he had recognised this fact and acknowledged it. It was not the Israeli Prime Minister he should have been begging for mercy, it was his Creator.

Fraser references a commentary on Eichmann which coined the phrase ‘the banality of evil’. He makes the point that moral evil does not always come with the “central-casting Gothic intensity of a horror movie”  but could be bureaucratic and technical.

Giles Fraser concludes by writing “… the moral message of his story remains profoundly unsettling: if ordinary people were capable of such great evil, then, given the right circumstances, so are the rest of us.”

If Eichmann, who on one level was a boring ordinary little man like so many of the rest of us could be seduced, by a charismatic leader riding the spirit of the age into the kind of evil that leads to this sort of thing

holocaust-14

…then as Fraser suggests, so (in certain circumstances and unless we actively recognise and resist moral evil even if it becomes very costly to do so) could you or I.

Moral evil exists, ideas have consequences, we are responsible for our choices, and we shall all stand before the Judgment Seat of Christ. Something which the Nazis, like other secular tyrants, denied. Incorrectly, as they now know.

God have mercy on all us sinners.

 

 

 

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