On the brink

I am having trouble relating to politics as usual, to our cultural problems as usual, to the Iraq crisis as usual, and even to the United States of America as usual, when in a few hours this country will be stepping over the brink into official rebellion against the divine and natural order of the universe. How ironic it is that, just as the events leading to the founding of the United States commenced in Massachusetts 229 years ago, the events leading to the end of the United States as we have known her are taking place in Massachusetts today.

And to think that our country is taking this monstrous course when we are in the midst of a war with religious fanatics who are seeking to destroy us, not in small part because they see us as immoral materialistic infidels. In past wars, America held days for prayer and atonement, to ask the favor of God. Can we hope that God’s protection will still cover us, after we have embarked on the moral atrocity of same-sex “marriage”? If this is not the desolating sacrilege, of which Jesus said that when it happened it was time to flee into the mountains, then nothing is. Yet that’s not necessarily the way things happen in the world that we know. Brimstone and fire are not going to fall from the sky tomorrow, the earth is not going to open and swallow us. Life will go on as we know it—at least for a while. And during that interval of unknown duration, this latest moral “reformation” of ours, like so many other moral and cultural perversions we have learned to accommodate ourselves to in recent times, may also come to be seen as “normal.” In a few years, the formal institutionalization of homosexual relationships may well be the “conservative” position, as compared with the institutionalization of incest, the institutionalization of sex with children, and the institutionalization of bestiality.

And perhaps that ongoing sense of the “normality” of this horror is the punishment that awaits us (I’m not speaking of the homosexual rights activists and their supporters, who have quite a different punishment in store for themselves, but all of us regular Americans who failed to stop this and will soon enough find ourselves adjusting to it), just as in the Divine Comedy the souls in hell forever repeat and affirm their sin, not even aware that they are being punished for it, and that this is their punishment.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at May 16, 2004 09:59 PM | Send


Unfortunately, incest, pedophilia and bestiality are not just happening in The Netherlands…

The huge news that has yet to be headlines at WND but is the headline at Drudge is…The U.S. and Britain are pulling out of Iraq ASAP…

Posted by: David Levin on May 16, 2004 10:55 PM

What is happening in Massachusetts tomorrow reminds me of Caligula naming his horse Incatatus a Roman Senator, getting married to his sister, and declairing himself a living God. The Massachusetts media is covering live, from Cambridge, of course, the first midnight weddings. I sit here tonight in a Nation I hardly understand, or feel comfortable in. There is little doubt America is in rapid decline, the only question left is if we can pull out of this decline.

Posted by: j.hagan on May 16, 2004 11:26 PM

Mr. Auster - I must say that you have a good point, and the future looks scary. But in regards to homosexual marriage, when one considers that hetrosexuals have greatly helped destroy the institution (i.e. rampant divorce), could we really expect anything less from the homosexual community? It is not as if gays getting married have to live up to a high standard when one considers the divorce rate is 50%.

Perhaps I’m too cynical about this, but I’m not sure there is much of an institution to defend. (Of course, I know the counter argument is that we still need to fight for it…and that is true, of course.)

Posted by: Mark on May 16, 2004 11:27 PM

Now the usual suspects are saying, “I am for Gay Marriage. Who does it hurt?” In a few years, these people will be campaigning for marriage between brothers and sisters. Anyone doubt this will happen?

Posted by: David on May 16, 2004 11:34 PM

I believe Mr. Auster may be “projecting” his attitude toward modern American culture onto Islamic terrorists when he says, “we are in the midst of a war with religious fanatics who are seeking to destroy us, not in small part because they see us as immoral materialistic infidels.” Would people like bin Ladin or Zarqawi hate us any less were we a Hindu society or an traditional moral Christian society? I don’t think it matters much to them if we are materialistic infidels or more theistic infidels; or if we are immoral infidels or moral infidels. This all-inclusive hatred of infidels or apostates is exemplified by the massacres of Shi’ites in southern Iraq by Zarqawi’s Sunni terrorist organization or the massacres of Shi’ites by Sunnis in Pakistan. We should seek to revive traditional Western, Christian culture because we think it was and is good, not because any hope that such a cultural change will cause enemies to hate us less.

Posted by: Joshua on May 16, 2004 11:35 PM

Just after reading these insightful comments, I happened to click over to Drudge…only to see that John Kerry’s daughter strolled into the Cannes film festival wearing a see-through dress…

God help us…

Posted by: Mark on May 16, 2004 11:41 PM

I disagree with Mark. The institution of marriage today, even though it has been afflicted with much degradation, is still worthy of defence. There is still a common understanding that, among other things, marriage is a union between a man and a woman, hopefully for a lifetime; that it is the optimal setting for the raising of children; that matrimony entials an obligation of sexual fidelity, that is, adultery is wrong or is at least to be disappoved of. It would be harmfull to lose these common understandings, even though they lack much of the authority they once had. Just because things are bad does not mean that they cannot become worse.

Posted by: Joshua on May 16, 2004 11:52 PM

And so it begins: at midnight, live on local TV, marriage licenses are now being giving out at Cambridge city hall. The press coverage is positive, with hundreds of cheering people in the streets. I see the same, stupid, blank liberal faces I know and remember so well from my years spent in that city. There are a few protesters, but not many.

Posted by: j.hagan on May 17, 2004 12:01 AM

When I posted by previous comment, I saw Mark’s comment on Kerry’s daughter’s appearence (double entandre, I know) at the film festival. I then clicked to the Drudge Report and saw the young Miss Alexandra Kerry. Goodness. And Jenna and Barbara Bush were mocked for underage drinking?!

Posted by: Joshua on May 17, 2004 12:03 AM

Of course Joshua is right. While I do happen to think that the Moslems would hate and fear us less if we were less disgusting and were not spreading our disgusting selves through the cosmos, that is not the primary reason, in the context of the war, that we must reform ourselves. The primary reason is that we do not have hope of winning this war for survival if we are ourselves so corrupt. But, my God, how do we go on using words like “corrupt” or “immoral” or “decadent”? We have entered some new sphere for which the old words are so inadequate. Let’s call it Sodom Plus.

And, as though announcing the new dispensation we are entering on this day, we see a photograph of the daughter of the Democratic candidate for president appearing in public in a see-through dress. Maybe at her father’s inaugural she’ll marry a horse.

Posted by: Lawrence Auster on May 17, 2004 12:23 AM

The press are now showing two protesters of gay marriage being spit upon, laughed at, pushed about, and being mocked in the streets of Cambridge. The streets of the city look like something out of the movie “the Night of the Living Dead”.

Posted by: j.hagan on May 17, 2004 12:37 AM

Are President Bush, his Republican supporters, and the neoconservatives going to keep on talking about how we are spreading our “values” to other countries?

Posted by: Lawrence Auster on May 17, 2004 12:48 AM

Bush and the gang will no doubt continue to spout their nonsense about American values. I’m willing to bet that in a short time our president will issue the pro-forma accusation of “homophobe” to anyone who questions total licentiousness as an American “value.” In Canada (Soviet Kanuckistan) the ruling elite has already made it illegal for any church to criticize homosexuality (though Muslims will undoubtedly be exempted form this rule). A similar law will be the next goal for the homosexualist lobby here in the US.

The suicide of the west seems to be accelerating at the very moment Islam is lunging for its throat. Nevertheless, no matter what happens, God will preserve a remnant of his own. He has never failed to do so throught history. We must continue to hold to the truth even if the rest of our nation chooses to believe a lie.

In one sense, the anti-war Paleos are right: we have no business projecting our power half way around the world when the forces of nihilism are allowed to wreak havoc here at home without even facing serious resistance. We are being attacked on two fronts, but Bush and Co. can’t even identify the enemies accurately on one front and are aiding and abetting the enemy on the second front, despite making an unpricipled exception to their true religion (liberalism) in getting rid of the Taliban and Saddam.

Posted by: Carl on May 17, 2004 1:23 AM

There is really very little left of the old-America some of us grew up in. Outside of the rural south and mid-west it is a vast wasteland. Pockets of civility and sanity remain, but those areas are being over-run with third-world immigrants and yuppies fleeing the chaos they created. We had a police chief come to this rural area of NH several years ago and the first thing he did was instituite a diversity study group, the area is 99% white. There was of course NO racial discord here, but his real lesson was clear, terrorize the population, shame them for being white, and straight. This was how he made his money, a sort of traveling racial arsonist in a police uniform. To the credit of the local people, after the shock wore off, he was driven out of town. The evil he did though lives on in the local press, who he was a God to. The press will often remind us of what a great and good man he was, and that certain elements in town, backward looking folks, drove him away because of guess what, bigotry ! It seems all rules, laws, norms, and behavior are up for grabs in this new America.

Posted by: j.hagan on May 17, 2004 1:29 AM

Joshua asks: “Would people like bin Ladin or Zarqawi hate us any less were we a traditional moral Christian society?”

Who cares what the wogs think? Let’s concentrate on our real enemies. As Tom Veal, a kind of literary Limbaugh, points out on his Stromata site: “a very big dog has not been barking. If Iraqi citizens were a tenth as exercised about Abu Ghraib, the Geneva Conventions and Seymour Hersh’s anonymous sources as are citizens of the Beltway, the country would be aflame at the moment. Instead, judging by the news accounts, it has grown quieter over the past couple of weeks.” http://stromata.tripod.com/index.htm

He’s saying this to push the war, but he misses his own mute mutt— “as are citizens of the Beltway”. Our own ruling class may hate us ten times as much as do the Mohammedans!

Posted by: Reg Csar on May 17, 2004 3:24 AM

Carl at 1:23 AM has a great one in his “Soviet Kanuckistan”. I would venture that OUR brave new country be called “Amerikistan”, but with gay marriage, pedophilia and bestiality already entrenched here, I am trying to come up with a name that also includes “Holland” or “Netherlands” in it.

On a serious note, I wonder if any conservatives are going to take to the streets on the gay marriage issue nationally, or are we doomed to having to accept it in MA and AZ? I assume CA is next…

Posted by: David Levin on May 17, 2004 3:31 AM

I remember something Steve Sailer once said (paraphrase):
The real reason why liberals aren’t concerned with polygamy coming from legalizing gay marriage is that polygamists in America are mostly white guys from traditionalist religions, and everyone knows civil rights don’t apply to them.
Of course, as Mr. Sailer pointed out, polygamy is closer as a civil right than many think, due to - immigration. It’s not going to be fringe elements of the Mormons who get the couts to recognize polygamy as legitimate, it is going to be groups like the Hmong who demand cultural sensitivity.

As for bin Laden and Zarqawi:
When people say: “They couldn’t possibly hate us any more,” they seem not to realize that in Laden and Zarqawi represent the far end of a spectrum of Muslim opinion. They may hate us no matter what, but there are plenty of Muslims out there who like us, are indifferent to us, or who hate us but don’t think that it is worth attacking us. Certainly the more that the Arab world sees us going in this direction of moral decay, the more that formerly indifferent Muslims will see us as a gathering threat to their morality. Particularly if we are intervening in Muslim lands. If Iraqis think that we are going to impose gay marriage on them, we might see a lot of formerly friendly ones deciding that maybe killing our troops ain’t such a bad idea after all.

Posted by: Michael Jose on May 17, 2004 7:26 AM

My experience in Pakistan was that while everyone was curious about Western morality (or lack thereof) and asked the same questions about it, only a few seemed genuinely upset by it and those were generally the people with too few problems of their own to worry about.

The questions I’d invariably be asked would include “Is it true that Americans get married without it being arranged by their parents?”, “Is it true that Americans live together and raise children without being married?” and “Is it true that it’s common for Americans to have relations with chickens/dogs/horses/etc?”

I think Mr. Jose is right that recognizing polygamy is the next logical step. I don’t see using immigrants as the poster children for that campaign though. My guess is it’ll be the swingers’ clubs — or “lifestyle organizations”, as they call themselves — that lead the charge to redefine marriage as any semi-permanent association of two or more consenting adults. The Muslims will be told, “Sit this out, don’t fight it and there’ll be something in it for you.”

Within the Canadian NDP, the parliamentary vote was declared a party-discipline vote rather than a freely-follow-your-conscience vote. In other words, NDP MPs were forced to vote for gay marriage whether they wanted to or not. One didn’t and locked herself in her office. At the same time, the NDP knew there was zero chance of imposing the same discipline on the Muslim rank and file. The message the Muslims got was, “Go do what you have to do. Lobby against gay marriage if you must. But if you come back to the fold when it’s over, we’ll make it worth your while.”

One thing nobody’s thought through about bringing Sharia arbitration into Canada is that it includes divorce. The Canadian compromise on divorce is hard-fought and workable and there’s no consensus for changing it. We allow “no-fault” divorce. You don’t need to prove violence or adultery or anything else. We don’t allow “fast-track” divorce. It’s not like Nevada where you can walk into court married and walk out single. You have to live separately for a year to get a no-fault divorce. Muslim divorce is about as fast-track as it gets. The marriage is over the minute the husband says it is. Multiculturalism says we have to give this to the Muslims. Non-discrimination says we can’t stop at giving it only to the Muslims. Like I said, no one has thought this through.

Posted by: Ken Hechtman on May 17, 2004 9:41 AM

Just to offer a contrarian note of optimism, I note that conservatism, in the “reactionary” sense we have discussed recently, must be roused by threats to civilization and its traditional foundations. The primary problem with marriage in America is that it is viewed as a means of achieving happiness for the spouses. Traditionally, marriage was a union for child bearing and rearing, as well as an economic union. It was a union to carry on the culture for another generation by providing the best environment for raising children.

When dating replaced courtship in the post-World War I era, and Freudian ideas about being personally happy and “well-adjusted” and so on replaced an emphasis on being personally virtuous, the stage was set for most of the ills of modern society. Modern divorce is only a symptom, and “gay marriage” is only a symptom.

Recent years have seen a revival of interest in courtship, and disenchantment with modern “dating”, among conservative Christians. Divorce problems have revived interest in premarital counseling among ministers, some of whom are now refusing to marry couples who refuse spiritual and premarital counseling. The next awakening will be the realization that, if marriage is just about Tommy and Susie being happy together, then why not have it also be about Tommy and Jimmy being happy together? At which point, the real purpose of marriage will be discovered anew.

It takes a crisis to produce reflection on traditions, which are otherwise left unspoken.

Posted by: Clark Coleman on May 17, 2004 9:51 AM

Good point by Mr. Hechtman about how Moslems will change Canada’s divorce laws.

Could he clarify the status of homosexual “marriage” in Canada. Does it exist in certain provinces, or only “civil unions”?

Posted by: Lawrence Auster on May 17, 2004 9:51 AM

Today is truly a sad for America, and all the posters here at VFR touch on that dramatically, as Mr. Auster does in his article.
As a college student who will probably see even more sadistic changes in this nation in my lifetime, I can only ask when will enough be enough?

Perhaps the often maligned Patrick J. Buchanan (on this site and in a recent frontpagemag.com article by Mr. Auster - extremely good by the way) said it best in his column today…

“Today, we meekly await the court’s judgment on whether we will have to legalize marriage between homosexuals. Were George III to return to life, he would roar with laughter at what a flock of sheep the descendants of the American rebels have become.”

A flock of sheep indeed.

Posted by: Michael J. Thompson on May 17, 2004 10:09 AM

“The press are now showing two protesters of gay marriage being spit upon, laughed at, pushed about, and being mocked in the streets of Cambridge.”

That can’t possibly be true, because “hate” is only practiced by the opponents of homosexual marriages. Supporters of that practice are loving and tolerant.

Seriously though: Remember how Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell were excoriated for daring to suggest that 9/11 might have been brought down on this country by our toleration, if not fostering, of such abominations as abortion and sodomy? I was really surprised that even Christians joined in the chorus, asserting that what Robertson and Falwell said was completely beyond the pale. I thought what they said was eminently reasonable. Given that wilful murder and the sin of Sodom are two of the four sins crying to Heaven for vengeance, why *wouldn’t* we expect such vengeance to fall on us? Not long after Robertson and Falwell were denounced, I was in church listening to the scripture in which the prophet Jeremiah was denounced in much the same way, for a similar offense of making “unpatriotic” comments about the sins of his people. Jeremiah, of course, was not really unpatriotic. He didn’t hate his country, nor did he think the Babylonians were justified in attacking and conquering the Kingdom of Judah. He did, however, think that Nebuchadnezzar was an instrument of God’s vengeance, and that his own people really couldn’t in justice expect any better. The next time some jihadists destroy a building, or even a city, in our country, we should remember that God didn’t spare His own chosen people when they offended Him, and that we have no right to expect to fare any better.

Posted by: Seamus on May 17, 2004 10:45 AM

Mr. Auster asked: “Does [gay marriage] exist in certain provinces, or only “civil unions”?”

Quebec, Ontario and British Columbia got city-hall marriages within the last year. As far as I know, none of the other provinces even have civil unions. It’s also worth pointing out that the change in all three provinces was judicial, not legislative.

At the federal level, there was an attempt to get it done with legislation last year. The bill got through first or second reading and then died on the order paper during the leadership transition in December 2003. We didn’t kick about that because the same procedural finagling also killed off a citizenship bill that we hated more than we liked gay marriage. This spring, instead of reintroducing it, the government has asked for a judicial review of the draft bill. We initially expected to get the Supreme Court opinion in April. Then the government added a fourth reference question and now the whole thing is going to be delayed until after the summer election.

One of the original three reference questions was about the rights of churches to refuse to perform gay marriages. So it’s not completely correct to say that the text of the bill compels them to do it. It does not. The government wants to know in advance if the Supreme Court plans to read that into it.

Posted by: Ken Hechtman on May 17, 2004 10:51 AM

Nothing to add to the comments about what this development says about the moral degradation of our society. I would only comment that the unwillingness or inability of President Bush and the Republican Party to offer harsh condemnation and effective opposition to legitimizing homosexual “marriage” offers another argument, along with the Bushrovicans’ immigration treason, for why true conservatives should hope, even work, for their defeat in November. Clear the false friends from the arena, so conservatives may realize that we need to create a genuinely conservative political alternative to the Left. Conservatives might find the sight of a see-through-clad first daughter revealing (pun intended) - if she is a Democrat’s daughter. If the daughters Bush skinny-dipped in the Reflecting Pool, I’m afraid most ordinary “conservatives” are so addled that they would find some way to excuse it. As things stand, their fear of Democrats makes them fall for the not-quite-Democrats of the GOP every time.

If this Washington Times story (http://www.washtimes.com/op-ed/20040516-102448-5881r.htm) is at all accurate, movement conservatives still don’t get it, though. Once again, I have to ask what it will take.

And this story (http://www.washtimes.com/metro/20040516-112705-3882r.htm) shows that our armed forces are militantly failing to learn the most important lesson of Abu Ghraib. Nuptials for sodomites, abuse of prisoners by U.S. soldiers and soldierettes who should know better, Marine and Army lieutenant-ettes forcing Brownies and Girl Scouts to do close-order drill: all are points on an American spectrum of cultural depravity. So is easy divorce. HRS

Posted by: Howard Sutherland on May 17, 2004 11:06 AM

As the American public gets the full taste of what it is like to live in a Kritarchy, the rule of government by judges, whith homosexual marriage approved today in Massachusetts by a 4-3 vote of its Supreme court, I too wonder what the likes of King George 111 would think. Courts not only levy taxes, and legislate from the bench, they invade almost every level of private and public life. Ask any divorced male with kids what it’s like dealing with the court system. Old Alexander Hamilton could not have been more wrong about his observation that the courts would be the least troubling of the branches of government.

Posted by: j.hagan on May 17, 2004 11:07 AM

Along the lines of what I wrote earlier is a column today at NRO: http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/campbell200405170730.asp

I would say that the time is now for speaking up for traditional marriage within our churches, teaching our own children that marriage is not all about their own short-term interests, pushing for serious premarital counseling in our churches, teaching the teenagers in our churches about the differences between modern “dating” and traditional courtship, etc. Excoriating the gay activists and judicial activists is great sport, but the complicity of “conservative” segments of America in all of this is a target closer to home.

As an example, a few years ago a Barna survey of divorce rates by religious affiliation showed that Southern Baptists had a higher divorce rate than atheists. This is leading to a renewal in premarital counseling among Baptist ministers, according to what I have read.

As I wrote in a recent thread at Jim Kalb’s blog, it is always tempting to blame all the big problems on some terrible elite and not on the mass of citizens.

Posted by: Clark Coleman on May 17, 2004 11:13 AM

As much as I wish I could take credit, the term “Soviet Kanuckistan” was coined by Pat Buchanan. No insult is intended to Canadians like our fellow poster Mr. Hechtman, who have to actually survive in the gulag created by the sandbox totalitarians running things there.

“Muslim divorce is about as fast-track as it gets. The marriage is over the minute the husband says it is. Multiculturalism says we have to give this to the Muslims. Non-discrimination says we cant stop at giving it only to the Muslims. Like I said, no one has thought this through.” — Ken Hechtman

I wouldn’t be surprised if the leftists who are promoting Muslim immigration into Canada will craft a means to allow Sharia divorce for Muslims (and other favored groups) only. Leftists only care about principles like “non-discrimination” or “freedom of religion” only to the extent they can be used to tear down the remnant of western societies. They obviously have no problem with the law authored by “Bend over Svend” Robinson defining any statement criticizing homosexual behavior - including scripture - as “hate speech.” There appears to be little effective conservative opposition in Canada. What remains will probably suffer the fate of Vlaams Blok in Belgium before long.

Posted by: Carl on May 17, 2004 11:21 AM

Carl wrote: “They obviously have no problem with the law authored by “Bend over Svend” Robinson defining any statement criticizing homosexual behavior - including scripture - as “hate speech.”

Svend’s bill has a religious exemption written into it.


2. Paragraph 319(3)(b) of the Act is replaced by the following:

(b) if, in good faith, the person expressed or attempted to establish by an argument an opinion on a religious subject or an opinion based on a belief in a religious text;

Technically, even Fred “God Hates Fags” Phelps could drive his way through that loophole.

Posted by: Ken Hechtman on May 17, 2004 11:55 AM

Carl also wrote: “There appears to be little effective conservative opposition in Canada. What remains will probably suffer the fate of Vlaams Blok in Belgium before long.”

I wouldn’t have described it that way. The center-right Conservative Party got taken over by the farther right Reform Party. After Jean Chretien retired, the Liberal Party moved right on a number of issues, from gay marriage to marijuana legalization to taxes to war in Iraq, while squeezing out prominent left-Liberals like Sheila Copps. Even the NDP has been trying to colonize some of the vacant space to its own right with pitches tailored to lonely and unloved left-Liberals and Red Tories.

Posted by: Ken Hechtman on May 17, 2004 12:14 PM

To David, who was trying to work “Holland” into our name: What could be more apropos than the “Low Countries”? Or the “Netherland”? It is embarassing to all of us, to say the least, that we have “allowed” our country to come to this pass. It seems incredible that we did not produce more effective conservative leadership than we did over the past 50 years. I am put in mind of Eric Voegelin’s discussion of Rome: by virtue of circumstances it survived as a power organization long after its “civilizational substance” had dissolved. Ours is dissolving before our eyes, though we are a stout power organization, relatively speaking, for now.

We have asked before here, why did Anglo-Saxon America fail? Did it commit national suicide back in the Civil War? Did it decide to become “a polyglot boading-house” for the sake of cheap labor?

Posted by: Bill on May 17, 2004 2:21 PM

“We have asked before here, why did Anglo-Saxon America fail?” There are numerous answers to something this complex, but I will throw out an oversimplification to think about.

It is the duty of the dominant religions within a culture to preserve what is good about that culture and defend against attacks upon what is good. Greece and Rome, among ancient empires, suffered from numerous and complex deficiencies that led to their downfall, but waning religious belief was certainly one of them. Rome weakened greatly during a period of a couple of centuries in which Christianity was not yet founded or was an infant, minority religion, and the old Roman civic religions, emperor worship, etc., were uninspired and waning. By the time Christianity became numerically significant, the society was already riven with class warfare, military overextension, etc., and was soon to fall.

The American culture was in need of defense against various intellectual viruses from before the founding up to the 20th century: modernism, Romanticism/Rousseauism, Marxism, socialism, Freudianism, utilitarianism, etc. Instead of being a bulwark of defense, the “mainline” Protestant churches were losing their faith in the scriptures and becoming “relevant” through the “social gospel” and a full embrace of most of these “isms”.

These currents go on for centuries, but it seems to me that the critical period was the 50-70 years prior to 1950. By the end of that era, the country was a modernist, New Deal, liberal, materialist society that was a perfect soil for the troubles that were soon to be planted.

Ideas have consequences. Most of the churches were embracing the very ideas that were threatening the culture, rather than fulfilling their role of defending against evil ideas.

Posted by: Clark Coleman on May 17, 2004 2:51 PM

Seems the gays want to wave the blood tests that the State of Massachusetts requires of married couples, so much for equal rights.

Posted by: j.hagan on May 17, 2004 3:07 PM

Mr Sutherland speculates, “If the daughters Bush skinny-dipped in the Reflecting Pool, Im afraid most ordinary ‘conservatives’ are so addled that they would find some way to excuse it.”

Two instances of “pachyepidermal exposure” come to mind. Patti Davis’s 1995 appearance in Mr Hefner’s publication is one, though that came mercifully long after the close of her father’s career, and indeed consciousness. (Would it be churlish of me to note that Miss Davis was in better shape— corporally— at 41 than Miss Kerry is at 30?)

Then there was the last-minute, and rather suspiciously-timed, revelation that Jon Grunseth, GOP gubernatorial challenger in Minnesota in 1990, had held skinny-dipping parties at his home, and had chased one of his teenaged daughter’s (presumably swimsuited) guests. (The young lady was by 1990 a student in Boston.) Grunseth panicked and blamed his opponent, DFL Gov. Rudy Perpich, who, like Grunseth, took a pro-life position. The “Independent-Republicans” (as the party was called in those days) replaced Grunseth a week before the election with the veteran, devious, liberal— and abortion advocate— Arne Carlson. (Imagine a Nelson Rockefeller clone, though unlike Rocky, Carlson was actually born and reared in New York.)

Of course, Gov. Perpich was Simon-pure of engineering his opponent’s downfall, but it’s not hard to imagine Carlson doing so. It certainly worked. It cost not only Gov. Rudy his job, but possibly Sen. Rudy (Boschwitz) his as well, as he went down to Paul Wellstone the same day, and no doubt many voters couldn’t keep the two Rudys straight, and decided to throw them out together.

Grunseth’s experience showed the impossibility, especially for Republicans, of being “cool” while holding “uncool” positions.

(BTW, neither the title of Hefner’s rag nor the name of the nuked atoll which gave its name to that swimsuit would show in “Preview”. Are certain words being screened?)

Posted by: Reg Csar on May 17, 2004 3:13 PM

Bill means me, David Levin, not “David”, another poster, and I thank him for the cogent comments.

I think Cole Porter’s lyrics in his famous tune “Anything Goes” summed it up. Of course, he was writing from the perspective of a man who was living a double life—married for years to the same woman (and traveling all over the world with her…and his gay friends), yet carrying on a life (behind the scenes) of sodomy, one of American/Western society’s greatest sins at that time.

The left has turned things completely upside down in the continued effort to “tear it all down, man”. While it certainly started long before the 60s, the 60s “made it all okay, Jay”. What I worry most about is not the act of sodomy itself (which we cannot halt if we wanted to—people will do what they will in the privacy of their own motel rooms and homes), but the “freedom of speech” issue like the one offered by Carl in his 11:21 AM post regarding “Bend Over Svend” Robinson in Canada. THAT is a scary thing, like “the thought police” conservatives here used to joke about as if it were some “futuristic impossibility” now finding fruition in Canada as law! I DON’T want such a thing coming here, and I can just imagine it coming to MASS, CA or some other “red” state that just made legal homosexual marriage. Will we be taking to the streets when it does come? Aren’t our “hate speech” laws are already very close to what Carl describes Canada as having? Heaven help us.

Posted by: David Levin on May 17, 2004 3:24 PM

Massachusetts waved the three day wait period for marriage licenses today for gays. Massachusetts officals are also ignoring a 1913 law that forbid out of state marriages unless the couple was going to live in the State. The left only likes SOME laws, and not others.

Posted by: j.hagan on May 17, 2004 3:26 PM

J. Hagan’s comments jolted me into thinking about something so many people apparently carefully AVOID thinking about: namely, the most obviously disastrous consequence of homosexuality, the spread of AIDS (and of other diseases, by no means only STDS.) Parents who are unhappy that their sons are homosexual are now commonly regarded as troglodytes, but entirely apart from the moral issues dealt with so well in this thread, they have good reason to worry that their offspring are just not going to survive their sexual quirks….
I thought Reg Caesar’s comment about Alexandra Kerry a little unfair, or at least ungallant! Come to think of it, I’d rather see her in the White House than her father!

Posted by: Alan Levine on May 17, 2004 4:59 PM

Mr. Hechtman points out the narrow pro-forma religious exemption in the Canadian hate-speech laws. Does Mr. Hechtman seriously believe that the same courts who penalized a small print shop for refusing to do business with a homosexualist organization is going to refrain from shutting down any tradtional churches - or censoring sermons? The exemption will only apply to Muslims. Leftists believe in concepts such as “freedom of religion” only to the extent that such freedoms coincide with the leftist agenda. If Phelps enters Canada, he will be arrested immediately and sent to prison. Even the mild warnings about the sinfulness of homosexual behavior from a manistream Christian ministry like Dobson’s Focus on the Family radio broadcasts are already heavily censored under Canada’s speech codes.

The ultimate agenda of the homosexual “marriage” movement is the same as that of all leftist movements - to destroy what’s left of the foundations of western civilzation. The pattern is a well-established one. Once such “marriages” are an everyday event, there will be a suit filed to force a traditional church to perform such a union in its sanctuary. Leftist judges will rule that any religious objection to this is simply an expression of “hate” and therefore not subject to protection under religious freedom. Catholc charites and other Christian ministries have already been ordered by courts to provide contraceptive coverage and even abortion services here in the United States.

What is your reading of the Canadian electorate, Mr. Hechtman? Are they as suicidally liberal as those of European countries? The perception from here in the US is that the leftist juggernaut is moving at an even faster pace in Canada than it is here. I have heard some talk of Alberta leaving the union, but it doesn’t strike me as a serious movement.

Posted by: Carl on May 17, 2004 5:51 PM

Mr Levin’s citing of Cole Porter is well-timed. Porter offers us a number of lessons.

First, he married Linda Lee Thomas, a divorce. And he was a homo. So there: who says homos aren’t allowed to marry? They’ve always been able to marry. They just haven’t been interested. That’s the problem. Their problem.

The Porters’ marriage was merely legal and formal, but that still carries a lot of weight. The Clintons’ similar arrangement gave them an advantage when having to face those notorious wife-dumpers Robert Dole and Newton Leroy Gingrich, n McPherson. And the Porters were sincerely devoted to one another at some level, if not the physical.

Finally, Porter’s saucy lyrics would not have worked in today’s “anything goes” culture. They needed a traditional establishment to tease. And he enjoyed high society too much to want to threaten it in any real way.

To Mr Levine: I don’t see AIDS as a disaster at all, at least in this country, precisely because it only hit the queer population. If every last one of them came down with it, what effect would it have on the general society? (I’m tempted to say “beneficial”, but I won’t…) Africa’s a different story, as it hits straight folks there, and hence children and the future. That’s why marriage is essential— for straight folks.

Yes, I probably owe an apology to Miss Kerry, but really, she did ask for it. I mean, during her father’s campaign?! How’s that for filial piety?

Posted by: Reg Csar on May 17, 2004 7:26 PM

Carl asked: “Does Mr. Hechtman seriously believe that the same courts who penalized a small print shop for refusing to do business with a homosexualist organization is going to refrain from shutting down any tradtional churches - or censoring sermons?”

We shall see. Bill C-250 (hate speech) is now the law of the land. The gay marriage bill will be reintroduced in the fall, at which time the traditional churches will campaign against it as they previously did, some more politely than others. We shall see who, if anyone, becomes the test case.

The question of forcing churches to perform gay marriages in in front of the Supreme Court now. We’ll know before the bill is reintroduced if they intend to read that into it.

The Canadian center of gravity is definitely to the left of the American one but I wouldn’t say it’s as far left as the European one. In Europe, declared socialists form national governments. In the US, they get 2% of the vote. In Canada, they form provincial governments but only elect 14 of 300 MPs at the federal level. The inside joke is that NDP (New Democratic Party) actually stands for Not Destined for Power.

The Western Separatists hit their high-water mark 25 years ago. The provinces have more powers now than then and Alberta has a far-right (by Canadian standards) provincial government, so it’s less of an issue now.

Posted by: Ken Hechtman on May 17, 2004 9:13 PM

I identify with the commentator who more or less says marriage was on the rocks before homosexual unions (aka homosexual marriage) came about. I am unsure it is wise to expect 95% of human beings to live under the same roof with the same spouse for 50 years. Perhaps there is an alternative: consensual legal separation coupled with abstinence. Abstinence is not the perversion that our popular culture would have us believe to justify giving in to our instincts. The enormous number of celibate Catholic priests is evidence in support. Indeed one might argue it is perverse or cruel to expect modern people to remain under one roof for 50 years without hating and killing one another. The separated are not adulterers, yet they are able to avoid the extreme unhappiness of married people who no longer love one another. There remains the possibility they will once again change and resume a relationship even if it is not the same as it was in the beginning. Of course annulment is always a possibility, but annulment can never be the predominant solution.

Posted by: P Murgos on May 17, 2004 9:56 PM

There is a common element that binds Bush voters that I speak with: “I don’t really like Bush, but I don’t like (insert Democrat here).”

Perhaps Conservatives should stop complaining about the Republican party, and do something constructive like abandon the party and create a new Conservative party. I know I am stating the obvious here, but I really believe that it isn’t just the far-right that dislikes Bush. Most Republicans think he’s too liberal. I think if Conservatives put there minds and money together, a powerful new political force could be created.

Do my fellow posters agree or disagree? Are we better off with the Republicans? Is it impossible to create a Conservative party? I’m not sure. I sense that the current among Conservatives is that the Republicans are the lesser of two evils today. It seems to me very sensible that the Republican party has a less of a hold on Conservatives today than it did in 1984 with Reagan in charge.

Posted by: Mark on May 17, 2004 10:00 PM

Joshua - I didn’t mean to imply that marriage wasn’t worth defending. I just suggest that the behavior of hetrosexuals has led to the homosexual marriage movement. Homosexuals are 3% of the population, and their political rights are at the mercy of the decadence of hetrosexuals.

Posted by: Mark on May 17, 2004 10:06 PM

In response to Mark, I think the best solution for the problem we conservatives face of de-facto political disenfranchisement might be to form a party within the party. As things stand, the Democratic party is completely in the hands of leftists. I see no point in even attempting to influence such an organization from within. The fact that Democrat stalwarts would nominate a Marxist like John Kerry to face a very weak George W. Bush tells us all we need to know about them.

The Country-Club and Neocon wing of the Republicans has been in de-facto control of the party for nearly a decade now, if not longer. As other posters have mentioned, the standard tactic is to gin up fear of Democrat/Leftist control so we’ll vote for the anemic liberals put forth by the party establishment. George W. Bush is a perfect example, but he is only one of many. John Kerry is such a horrible leftist that many conservatives will vote for Bush out of sheer desperation.

Our error has been in giving people like Bush and Frist our loyalty without extracting real concessions from them. If there were a sufficient core of real conservatives in congess who would play hard ball with the likes of Bush, conservatism could conceivably win some defensive victories against the leftist juggernaut.

A conservative caucus could occaisionally join with the Democrats to scrap corporate welfare, “free trade” deals, and environmental giveaways to show the Country Club crowd that it is serious about immigration, national sovereignty, abortion, and other issues. Whether the Country Club types running the party are real liberals or simply mindless fools who think only about what is best for their short-term gain, they need to understand that our support comes with definite strings attached.

Posted by: Carl on May 17, 2004 11:14 PM

Excellent suggestion by Carl - a Conservative Caucus.

Posted by: Allan Wall on May 17, 2004 11:53 PM

This is a test. I am extremely frustrated that I cannot add to this discussion

Posted by: P Murgos on May 18, 2004 1:14 AM

I love Reg Caesar’s May 17 7:26 PM shrewd reply to my comment about Cole Porter’s lyrics: “Porter’s lyrics would not have worked in today’s ‘anything goes’ culture. They needed a traditional establishment to tease.”

I’d like to use that in my next cabaret performance of Porter’s music! But I’m afraid that Mr. Hechtman’s Canadian (and our own) “thought police” might tape my mouth and carry me out kicking and screaming (muted). It’s funny, because I didn’t know that Porter was gay for probably the first ten years that I worked on his music. When I found out, I was of course “disappointed” that he wasn’t “the John Wayne” of show tune composers, but I continued to perform his music publicly. I concentrated (pardon the pun) on just THE MUSIC, then the lyrics (working with a vocalist) but I never got into talking about “the politics” or “persuasion” of the man. Most people know now that Porter was rich, lived in a suite in The Waldorf-Astoria and some knew that he was gay. But concentrating on the politics—or the constant reminder about a particular composer’s sexual persuasion—can destroy “the beauty” of the composer’s music—though I imagine that if Adolf Hitler had been a great writer of popular music, I would have avoided his songs regardless of their merit/quality. So, “who” or “what” a person is can make a difference. In Porter’s case, it hasn’t to me.

Posted by: David Levin on May 18, 2004 2:49 AM

In response to Mark’s “We should quit complaining about Bush…and form a new Conservative Party”, that was the reason my “exit” at freerepublic.com and my “entrance issue” at VFR months ago. Some VFR Messengers talked of joining The Constitution Party, while others like me were advised to “Wait until after the Election”, which was probably good advice. Or, “Wait until amnesty for illegals is the law.” That should get the blood boiling again! The CP is simply not strong enough against “the invasion” along our Southern Border beside which their nominee, Mr. Peroutka, sounds more like a preacher making a sermon than a politician. A third party—a true Conservative Party—is a real possibility, particularly if amnesty for illegals is pushed thru next year.

Wouldn’t “a Conservative Caucus” require there be MULTIPLE conservative Congressmen? I don’t believe thare are enough to HAVE a caucus—who, Tom Tancredo and Ron Paul? Tancredo is fighting to save his seat without GOP/Bush’s help in Colorado, and Paul is a Libertarian. Sen. Larry Craig used to be a Conservative, as did Sen. Lott. These people were “turned” into RINOs somehow, and I doubt they will be going back to being conservatives any time soon. They like the RINO/counctry club money and power too much. I think “the conservative wing”—what there was of it—was hurt by Sen. Helms’ departure and Sen. Thurmond’s death. You don’t replace people like that—it takes years.

Posted by: David Levin on May 18, 2004 3:10 AM

Mr. Levin (David) is quite right about the need for more than two members of Congress to form a conservative caucus. My complaint about third party movements is that they all too often squander their limited funds and energy in trying to elect a president. They really need to be focusing on state legislatures, the US House , and then the Senate before attempting to run a serious candidate for President.

If there are Republicans who support the majority of our positions, form an alliance with them instead of splitting the conservative vote. The reason Janet Napolitano, a notorious Clintonite carpetbagger, was elected Gov. of Arizona was that conservatives in that state split their votes between two candidates. In other cases, a different strategy would be needed. Pennsylvania’s leftist Republican, Arlen Specter, will do tremendous damage if re-elected with a Republican majority in the Senate. Conservatives in PA should vote third party. Even if the Dhimmicrat is sent to Washington as a result, as a junior Senator he would be less destructive than Specter heading the Judiciary committee.

Posted by: Carl on May 18, 2004 3:34 AM

Mr Levin, it is easier to forgive an artist’s vices than his politics, especially if he is prudent enough to keep them backstage. I always assume any Anglo-Saxon composer worth hearing is a) drunk, b) queer, or c) half-Irish (or half-something else). This prevents disappointment, is true as often as not, and makes for a pleasant surprise when not, e.g., Hoagy Carmichael. When it is, as with Porter, the acoustics are better in the closet.

One of our local auto dealers once rented a concert hall to put on his one-man tribute in which he portrayed Porter. This was not as bad as it sounds— he was a one-time Met Opera understudy who sang much better than his subject. The problem was his appearance— nothing like the fey Porter, but a ringer for the beefy, straight-laced Oscar Hammerstein.

Posted by: Reg Csar on May 18, 2004 3:37 AM

Mr. Caesar’s explanation of how to form a “coalition of conservatives” at the lower levels without putting needed resources towards a conservative presidential candidate who can’t possibly win is a good point—as are his points regarding PA and AZ. The difference between those two states of course in the Mexican border. A tough-on-illegal-immigration governor was needed, and the opposite happened. Thus, a Democrat governor of AZ stands to do a lot more damage to the country—and to her state—than a Demo governor of PA. But, the issue was a conservative caucus or small group within Congress. I wonder of Mr. Tancredo and Mr. Paul have attempted to form one. The problem I imagine is not just money. The RINOs took over the GOP, and they (and the president) determine who will be supported during re-election bids. Mr. Tancredo is going it alone, as I imagine is Mr. Paul. Mr. Tancredo is THE voice in Congress against illegal immigration and I think is safe to say that he is not a favorite of The White House. As always, the problem is the really staunch conservatives like Phyllis Schlafly are too old or have no interest in running for Congress. There is a huge vacuum there. AND there is a neo-liberal governor named Ahnold, with an “R” by his name who is looming in the West—a guy who has a lot of money behind him as well as some major (national) ambitions. The question IS…can the abysmal Sen. Hatch push through a Constitutional Amendment for Ahnold so he can run for president?

Also to Mr. Caesar, I don’t look anything like the car dealer, but what a novel concept! A car dealer playing Cole Porter in a one-man show…My vocal chords remain silent in our shows, allowing Regina Otto to take the reins.

As Mr. Caesar undoubtedly knows (being a Porter music fan), Porter probably wrote the most difficult music to sing—especially his verses (We call them “range chickens” for their demanding wide vocal range). What is perhaps an interesting aside is that neither Sinatra not Ella Fitzgerald—who both did very well singing Porter—sung his “original” lyrics, as many of them were not available (having been banned by the censors in the late 30s and 40s) until 1991, when the wonderful lyric only book “Cole” came out. As there are few soprano-cabaret female vocalists and even fewer male cabaret tenors, Porter’s music is thus very often “cheated” on—another “gift” from the last 40 years of “pop” music.

Posted by: David Levin on May 18, 2004 5:03 AM

Thanks, but those ideas were Carl’s, not mine. The concept “think continentally, act locally” is a good one. There are many ways to do this— Wallace-style Electoral College disruptors, sheriffs arresting illegals for violating state laws, etc.

Posted by: Reg Csar on May 18, 2004 5:17 AM

All of this talk about how Tom Tancredo is virtually the only good guy in the House is way off the mark. The Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus has more than 70 members, including a small handful of Democrats, and they regularly buck their parties’ leaderships on various votes. See: http://www.house.gov/tancredo/Immigration/members.html

They maintain an immigration vote scorecard where you can check the performance of your representative over at betterimmigration.com: http://www.betterimmigration.com/reportcardintro.html

We need to keep informed and not be so pessimistic. If your representative is one of the good guys, send an email of encouragement. They need to have some voter backing when they buck the party whips and the President and other associated traitors to their country. I recently sent an email of encouragement to my representative, Virgil Goode of Virginia, who is a member of the caucus, and he sent a letter of thanks that included the text of his recently proposed constitutional amendment to make English the official language of the United States, with all government business to be conducted in English.

Posted by: Clark Coleman on May 18, 2004 9:00 AM

My thanks to Clark Coleman for the links and info on the Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus. I will note its members and check their record of voting.

Posted by: David Levin on May 18, 2004 2:08 PM
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