What of our Christian heritage?

Beatrix writes:

An excerpt from Ted Cruz’s ‘talkathon’-
“What we have here is our core values as Americans and Christians slipping away into this facade where we should take care of our poor, sick, and disabled,” said Cruz in hour 19 of his filibuster. “It is disheartening to know that the nation our forefathers built is no longer of importance to our president and his Democratic counterparts. Not only that, we are falling away from core Christian values. I don’t know about you, but I believe in the Jesus who died to save himself, not enable lazy followers to be dependent on him. He didn’t walk around all willy nilly just passing out free healthcare to those who were sick, or food to those who were hungry, or clothes to those in need. No, he said get up, brush yourself off, go into town and get a job, and as he hung on the cross he said,”I died so that I may live in eternity with my Father. If you want to join us you can die for yourself and your own sins. What do I look like, your savior or something?” That’s the Jesus I want to see brought back into our core values as a nation. That’s why we need to repeal Obamacare.”

Eh, I don’t know if this qualifies as ‘Dominion theology’ or just outright asininity.
Jesus died to save himself?
Never heard that before. In fact, I would have thought most US Christians of all denominations to find Cruz’s dubious attributions to Jesus rather offensive.
Ted certainly seems to echo the sentiments of his dad given this statement.
Unfortunately on my last visit to the US last year I found this sort of thinking to be quite common – but then again I was in the Atlanta area for most of the time.

I’m not familiar with this chap and his political orientation but from what Beatrix has described he seems to be a symptom of a much larger problem: That North American Christianity has lost its spiritual bearing. I can see how Christianity and traditional libertarianism/capitalism meshed together.

The American tradition was an interesting blend of libertarianism (with its corollary the free market) with elements of classical conservatism. Lokean liberalism’s emphasis on the individual and his/her inalienable rights stemmed from Christianity and natural law. The worth of the individual was paramount and it was the state’s responsibility to safeguard it. This would also cause economic inequality but that would be taken care of as Christianity emphasized charity. Of course we realize today that some state intervention is necessary for mitigating the effects of a volatile economy.

Yet the American tradition also borrowed heavily from the philosophy of Edmund Burke; that the state must be Christian in spirit and not theocracy. That families, communities, and public morality must be regulated by Christianity and these social groups would serve as a buffer between the individual and the state. The founding fathers were also deeply concerned that democracy would entail mob rule, a common perception shared by American and British intellectuals (such as Lord Macaulay) at the time. The electoral college was the earliest safeguard against democracy and it has been rightly argued by some that today’s America is far more democratic than what the founding fathers intended. As Paleoconservatives we are partial to Edmund Burke’s conservatism (within reason) as we witness the cultural Marxist left raze and destroy Western culture by attacking the family and Church via feminism and communism.

In both cases as we can observe, Christianity played a role in shaping the spirit and morality of law and political philosophy, and not their literal content. We don’t believe in or endorse pastors writing laws on this website but we do support the Christian character of society. Today’s cultural Marxist left (like its intellectual predecessor) seeks to subvert society by promoting rebellion; Women rebelling against men and patriarchy (feminism), workers rebelling against the Bourgeoisie (communism), Gays rebelling against society (“gay rights”) minorities rebelling against the majority (multiculturalism) ect… We as Paleoconservatives hearken back the cry of Burke:”Evolution, not revolution!”

Today’s Christian right seems somewhat displaced in it’s scope where it seeks to impose theocracy, meddle in foreign policy, and thrust a noxious philo-semitic interpretation of scripture upon the rest of us. Cruz’s take on Jesus paints a dismal picture of a reality where Christianity has to aggressively compete with other common ideologies for public space and public consciousness. Cultural subversion has fashioned a society that worships material objects with greater fervor than a pagan worships his idol. Since society is no longer Christian in spirit, Christianity has been forced out of the spiritual domain and onto the mechanistic world where it must jostle with other ideologies for public space. Hence Jesus becomes a capitalist.

I’m eager to hear your thoughts on this issue and feel free to point out any flaws in my  reasoning.

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33 Responses to What of our Christian heritage?

  1. WmarkW says:

    We’ve discussed here before that culture trumps religion. Are you familiar wth Black Rednecks and White Liberals by Thomas Sowell? His thesis is that African-Americans learned their culture from the antebellum south. Among its features:

    Distrust of outsiders
    Emphasis on pride out of proportion to merit
    Lack of intellectual curiosity
    Acceptance of violence

    But the big one for purposes of this discussion is boisterous, non-introspective religion. Jerry Falwell and Jesse Jackson are at opposite poles politically, but come from the same religious background. And, in contrast to much of Christianity that puts an emphasis on humility, their sects are extremely arrogant about being right. Their belief in their own rightness transcends purely spiritual matters, into a belief that society is supposed to adapt to their views.

    The fact that white southerners and African-Americans have come to define the two ends of our political spectrum, is a big part of the reason for extreme political polarization today, despite the lack of any immediate issues of the scale of slavery, the Great Depression or nuclear annihilation. Our political spectrum is defined by two groups who think the country is morally depraved for not agreeing with their politics.

    • Bay Area Guy says:

      Sowell’s theory appears to be sound. For most of their history, black Americans resided in the South, so it’s not surprising that they imbibed white Southern values. I remember reading To Kill a Mockingbird for the first time, and initially thinking that Scout Finch was black, on account of her use of improper grammar (ie. “you was”). She sounded like some of the black kids I went to school with.

      That being said, I wouldn’t attribute that much influence to black Americans. They may form a significant portion of the Democratic party, but they have hardly come to “define” the political landscape.

      It’s Jews and liberal white gentiles who are most of the money behind the Democratic party, and in this country’s modern politics, money is key.

      • WmarkW says:

        BAG: “That being said, I wouldn’t attribute that much influence to black Americans. ”

        Blacks may not have much influence themselves, but the fact that they define the Left makes it averse to serious examination of group differences. When even a leading Democrat like Larry Summers tries to discuss an obvious difference between two demographic groups, he’s widely attacked from his own ideologues for hindering the diversity agenda without regard to whether his points are true or not.

    • Dota says:

      Culture does trump religion, and my post doesn’t negate that thesis. I mentioned that American materialism has displaced Christianity from its domain of spirituality/morality and caused it to fall into the realm of material reality below. If must politicize itself to survive on this plane and that is what we see in the Christian right. A society that is Christian in spirit does not need Christian right wingers.

      Historically, Christianity has always molded the spirit of western societies without dictating local laws. Despite the bad rep that medieval Catholicism gets, it was still far more conducive to sovereignty and political autonomy than Islam ever was. Christianity is superior to Islam in this regard as it lends itself to “Evolution and not revolution” as Edmund Burke clearly pointed out. And while Islam is an ethical religion at its core, it’s fatal flaw is that it tries to legislate morality whereas Christianity attempts to reform society by acting within the bounds of culture by emphasizing the moral integrity of the individual. Islam tries to create an ethical society by emphasizing a strong moral state, a top down approach that mirrors Confucianism, whereas Christianity aims to create a moral society by creating a better individual. I prefer the latter approach.

      • mixedraced says:

        Confucianism is nothing like Islam. Before the Yuan Dynasty Confucianism was an ideology of progress and meritocracy but because of paranoid foreign influences became more conservative and backward.

      • mixedraced says:

        The more recent strains of Confucianism are seen as disgraceful and humiliating by the modern Chinese.

      • coward says:

        Confucianism was never meant to be a religion. It was more of a philoshopical way of life and a set of concepts intended to bring meaning into a person’s life. Unfortunately like all religions intended for good purposes, it turned sour quickly, another example would be original Christianity vs Roman Catholicism.

  2. I dunno . . . MY bible has a passage in it about the Good Samaritan. MY bible reads “Love your neighbor as yourself.” MINE advises us “As you treat the least of these, my brothers, you have treated me.” So denying health care coverage to has become the mantra of the right-wing GOP, including Evangelists! What kind of family values is that?

    • WmarkW says:

      So far I don’t really like Obamacare, but…

      The GOP held both houses of Congress from 1995-2006, and in twelve years under two Presidents who would sign sensible legislation, they never came up with a plan of their own. I don’t really believe they have a “better way” up their sleeves.

      • ale says:

        I am not that negative with the West, is evident the West has much more material prosperity than most of the world, plus most of the happiest countries are Western, i think we shouldn’t be that negative, is important not to be conformist and try to improve, but too much negativity isn’t good either, one of the Western legacy is ANTI CENSORSHIP, we don’t live in China or Iran where the goverment censore things, how dull watching only opinions in favor of one’ side, Western people in United States, Sweden and Norway live economically better AND are happier than people in Brazil or Ukraine.


  3. mixedraced says:

    China was much more ahead of the world for most of its history. However, because of the mongol invasion which ended the Southern Song dynasty and then the Manchu invasion later which ended the Ming Dynasty, China became stagnant due to the paranoia of the ruling foreign dynasties. If you look at Chinese history you’ll see that the times non-Chinese governments ruled the state became stagnant and when they were ousted by a Chinese power the state progressed and moved forward. Look at east asia now: Japan is a world leader in Pharmaceuticals, entertainment, renewable and robotic technologies; South Korea has now caught up with the west and is now pursuing its own way instead of just copying; and now China is rapidly catching up and will probably become a great new innovative power like it was in the past. Anyway, they do more than just copy the west, they improve the technologies they copy rapidly. Surely an uncreative people couldn’t innovate in existing technologies to such a high level.

    • ale says:

      So what? the Chinese and Indians are pretty Emo people : ( , and the Japanese and South Korean are relatively Emo, the happiest people are Western ; ) from United States or Sweden. Look this list of happiest people.


      • coward says:

        He is right about that. The more you look at race and genes, the more it becomes clear that race does not really exist. I have been away awhile but during this time I did a lot of studying on population genetics and it becomes clear to me that there is not a genetic contstruction of race; the distance to establish race is merely too small. Like Dota and BAG are doing; it is culture which is the main kicker in making one person different. Culture and environment. White culture needs to be preserved, not White people.

      • Dota says:

        You used to be pretty big on HBD, but you’ve now adopted the exact opposite position on race. I still believe race exists and is more than an arbitrary label, but I maintain that culture and geography are far more important.

      • coward says:

        You know, if the East Asian parents were relatively leineint on their kids, I think that they would be a lot happier. Unfortunately the parents are very strict and demanding and hold exaagerated expectations of their kids so it becomes near impossible for a kid to have a normal life over there. It all really comes down to their conformist and overdemanding culture, and when this changes, so does Asian happiness index.

  4. mixedraced says:

    Ale, please respond

  5. mixedraced says:

    Also just to add, I’m not Ethiopian. This was just a lie to see reactions, but there was only a few.

    • coward says:

      Hey Axum this is Coward/Eren Jaegar. How is your East African studies going?

      • coward says:

        I have been doing a relatively lot of studying on African civilizations lately, particularly Great Zimbabwe and Benin.

      • Batterytrain says:

        I still don’t think Africans are going to go anywhere and I do believe the European look to be superior looking to other races on a aesthetic level:

        The thing with Africans is that they are literally sitting on a treasure chest of natural resources but still after recovering from colonialism, but can’t seemingly take advantage of those resources. Europe may have been far behind Africa at one point (esp Northern Europe etc) but than they had the biology/IQ/flexibility/creativity to push out all other races/cultures in the world eventually. It doesn’t matter where you start, if you have the ability to to push forward then you go forward.

      • coward says:

        Batterytrain, Black Africans prior to colonization had decent kingdoms. Benin, Mali, Songhai, and Ashanti are just a few examples, and many are still yet recovering, but it is mainly the civil turmoil and war that is pushing their country down.

      • mixedraced says:

        Good. I got an A for my first coursework piece. This is the second highest grade achieved in my entire year group (i didn’t make it to SOAS because of a last minute application by someone with better A-Level grades). My academic tutor has said that my second piece is already on A- level and it’s my first draft for that assignment.

      • coward says:

        Batterytrain; aesthetic beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. Asians who have never seen Whites during childhood may consider Mongoloid features to be more attractive, same for Blacks. Same for Whites who want to be Black; wiggers.

  6. Batterytrain says:

    But those Kingdoms were the result of Semitic/Outsider contact and influence, the Arabids/Semites and Islamics were the real colonizers and traders of Africans and they were doing it eons before Euro’s. They were the principles agents of exchange and enslavement in connection to the Europeans, as middle men; infact they were the ones that encouraged it in the first place.

    Caucasians had older and much more advanced societies than most of the African kingdoms at their peaks. I still think the Western phenotype and civilization needs to preserved ASAP and populate most major places of the planet and other planets.

  7. mixedraced says:

    A change of culture would work for East Asians but not Blacks. Many black people already live in modern developed environments but still fall behind in everything. Also, Chinese scientists in 2007 discovered vast genetic differences between the major races.

    • coward says:

      Actually, in 2007; a Chinese scientist said there was no genetic difference between races (Li, Fu Zhou 2007) in Abstract of Human Biodiversity. He said that there is no gene which is exclusive to a race. A change of environment would definetly put East Asians light years ahead of Whites. Imagine another Mongol Empire or another Qin or Han Dynasty. If Asians quit trying to be conformist and adaptative and become a race of individualistic innovators, then they would be on Mars in a few years.

      • Dota says:

        The question of the ages: What makes civilizations rise and fall? It’s a hard question to answer but Jacob Brownowski is essentially correct when he hints that fresh ideas sometimes provide an impetus for societies to progress forward. Isolated societies like China and India found themselves stagnating after periodic bursts of innovation. The west had been in contact with Islam for centuries and received a lot of fresh ideas from the Arabs. These ideas were then improved upon until the west came in contact with East Asia. Contact with other cultures had an energizing effect on the western mind. Consider Star trek and its theme of exploration/expanding horizons. Exploration seems to be peculiar to western culture. Mental exploration first begins with physical exploration. The need to redefine frontiers through progress is antithetical to India’s Hinduised culture whereas in China’s case, geography was a barrier to exploration.

  8. mixedraced says:

    No, the Chinese government banned exploration and ocean going ships. This prevented another Zheng He from emerging. Blame the Ming eunuchs and the Qing government.

  9. mixedraced says:

    Also, Blacks have higher estrogen levels than other races. This could explain why both males and females of that race have big butts and why black people tend to emphasise the clique gang culture of inner cities. This, and so many other examples.

  10. Manny says:

    “Yet the American tradition also borrowed heavily from the philosophy of Edmund Burke; that the state must be Christian in spirit and not theocracy. :”?

    Ha Ha HA!

    Edmund Burke also was against the French Revolution and the American Revolution. He felt America should be ruled by Kings ..because only Kings have the sanctity of Divinity!

    The great debate between Thomas Paine and Burke (freely available) in The Rights of Man, Edund Burke the christian was made a fool and Paine won. And his parts of Rights of Man became the Bill of Rights. Thomas Paine made the United States. Not Burke!

    Sheesh…this is what I call half baked half educated opinions!


    • Dota says:

      You do realize that it is possible to embrace a portion of an individual’s philosophy while rejecting other parts right? I mean, you Internet Hindus are famed for your nuance and your opposition to binary thinking am I right?

      The American tradition incorporates elements from various philosophies which include Lokean liberalism (Libertarianism), classical conservatism, and Utilitarian elitism (Lippmann,Wilson).

      You do also realize that people reinterpret ideologies every generation or so right? This is the progressive west after all and not even conservatism is opposed to cultural evolution. This isn’t Hindu India where people duplicate their backward beliefs every generation without introspection.

      And I’m glad you’ve taken the trouble to wiki the big names like Paine and Burke. The next step would be to get some books from the library and read a bit about these men in depth.

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