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28.2.12

In America you can go to jail for protecting yourself. The case of Jay Rodney Lewis.

in America you can go to jail for protecting yourself
The result of liberal agenda. The liberal stance on crime is part of a broader view that the way to protect the rights of all is to protect the rights of the obnoxious. After all, if you protect the free speech rights Islamic terrorists surely you've built a wall big and strong enough to protect the free speech rights of all.

The only problem is, what happens when the activities of the sociopath degrade the rights of others? Protecting the rights of the obnoxious protects only the rights of the obnoxious.

Read this: Lewis, a Kansas native, moved to West Des Moines in fall 2010 to take a job in an Internal Revenue Service call center.

A former security guard and law enforcement officer, Lewis also is a hunter and gun collector and came to Iowa with a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

Police reports and court records say Lewis’ troubles began shortly before midnight on Oct. 29. Lewis was headed home in his blue Ford Mustang, south on 11th Street toward Regency Woods Apartments in West Des Moines, when he came upon a Ford Taurus driven by James Scott Ludwick, 35.

Ludwick, a former soldier and convicted felon, was driving four people home from a Halloween party. Documents say Ludwick slowed; Lewis passed him. Ludwick sped up, and the cars raced down 11th Street until they came to Regency Woods. They collided when Lewis, in front and on the right, started to turn left.

Lewis said Ludwick and a passenger, Justin Lossner, got out of the Taurus and began punching the Mustang’s windows.

They backed off when Lewis pulled out his .380-caliber pistol. But they came back.

Lewis said he was outside his car, evaluating its damage, when he caught Ludwick and Lossner trying to sneak up on him from two different directions.

The recording of a 911 call made by Lewis begins with Lewis yelling at the two to “just stay where you are. Get back! Get back! I’m going to start shooting!”

There are exchanges of profanities while Lewis explains the situation to a police dispatcher. Then, “Get away from me. Get away from me!” And a bang.

911 call: Jay Rodney Lewis reports assault, shooting attacker

Ludwick was shot, Lewis said, when Ludwick turned away as if to retreat, then spun back and charged. Records say the bullet hit Ludwick in his chest above the right pectoral muscle, then tore through his right bicep.

Jurors found Lewis’ actions entirely appropriate.

“He gave them fair warning,” jury forewoman Nancy Alberts said. “Normally, anybody that would pull a gun on someone, you would think that they would stop. ... That wasn’t the case here. You could clearly hear on the 911 call where he warned Mr. Ludwick.”

Appendix:
He was in jail for four months and was found innocent by a jury.
But he lost his job and is now homeless.  All for protecting himself.





common sense

Common sense is a large topic. I tend to agree with Ann Rand on this topic that a trend in philosophy trickles down to everything else. . (E.g. With Rousseau's Anti-Reason Anti-Enlightenment ) Here also the general trend of Western philosophy was to look at anything that was common sense as being by definition not possible.
In American and English thought only the counter intuitive is considered true.

This is a sad development in philosophy starting from David Hume and continuing in the Anglo British school. I would welcome a return to common sense in the world.
Hume starts out with a simple mistake that has plagued philosophy since his time. He asks for a idea that is not based on the senses. He says if one could find such an idea it would disprove him. Then he finds this idea. Then he says it is meaningless instead of admitting his mistake.
That is not his only mistake.There is also his completely arbitrary claim that reason does nothing but perceive  contradictions. Where he gets this from is simple. He saw Euclid and was impressed so he decided philosophy had to follow the same path. In any case his claim is stupid and arbitrary.It is true that Euclid builds his system by means of simple axioms and then uses reason to perceive contradictions --but also he uses reason to build up claims and ideas that are ot based on simply perceiving contradictions. So Hume did not even understand Euclid.

On a separate topic here is an essay about another issue that Hume got confused in; http://www.uwgb.edu/DutchS/PSEUDOSC/Hume.htm

22.2.12

The problem the Baal Teshuva movement.

The problem with Kiruv and the Baal Teshuva movement.
It had a great idea in the beginning of teaching people to learn and keep Torah. And this is I admit a great thing.

The problem with Kiruv note 1 and the Baal Teshuva movement. The movement the movement to convert Reform and Conservative young college students into  by inviting them to Sabbath meals and show them an idealized picture of what Torah is about. The words "Baal Teshuva" means newly religious.] had its glorious honeymoon when old and young, comfortable and desperate, homeless and tenured all found that what they had in common was so compelling the differences hardly seemed to matter.

Until they did.

Revolutions are always like this: at first all men are brothers, and anything is possible, and then, if you're lucky, the romance of that heady moment ripens into a relationship, instead of a breakup, an abusive marriage, or a murder-suicide. The Baal Teshuva movement had its golden age.

Part of what all Baali Teshuva  had in common was they against: the current "System," (the whole thing evolved out of the 1960's mentality) and the principle of insatiable greed that made it run, as well as the emotional and economic problems that accompanied it.

The "System" that damages people, and its devastation was on display as never before in the early 1960's.
And then came people -- the psychologically fragile, the marginal, the greedy and cruel -- some of them endlessly needy and with a huge capacity for disruption. Others who had wanted to experience a Jewish society on a grand scale found themselves trying to solve parnasa ( money) problems by using the Torah and by fraud pretending to be teaching the ancient wisdom of the Talmud (which is great).
The fraud  is what I think destroyed the beauty of it all--but it might be the very system itself that is particularly open for abuse--very much like communism


And then there was the violence. The main modus operandi can best be described by Odysseus: "We went into villages and killed all the men and took the women and children". This is done not by violence, but rather stealth and cunning. Kiruv depended on the naivety of women, and teachers play the part of righteous sages. Then the woman comes to ask advice from the teacher about her husband. the answer for was to find out the level of observance of the husband. If it is more than the accepted amount, then they tell the woman the husband is a lunatic "meshuga." If the level of observance is less, then the husband is a heretic (apikorus). This way the woman and and her children become part of the community and the husband is discarded like trash. This was almost never do this with malicious intent but just by instinct.

Next is Aish and the different Kiruv  groups. In essence, debating today has become a rhetorical tool used to control questions through obfuscation. This is why debating, is very much a root cause of propelling our anti secular knowledge forward to the next level of insipidity. This was not the case in previous epochs. Not long ago people actually presented evidence supplied by history, data, facts, and used demonstrable proofs to demonstrate the validity of arguments. There seems little use in debating in groups like Aish that do not retain respect for truth. Ironically, debating the virtue and merits of truth, moral goodness or the nature of the good life is rarely something that those who sincerely practice such things feel compelled to do.
 Rav Shach wrote what he thought about Kiruv-- and it was harsh.
There is no board of review or  a process to decide integrity. And since there is no overseeing or checking for integrity, there is no integrity.

This is the problem with empowering people that have no sense of justice. It is the reason Reb Israel Salanter started the Musar movement. Without a sense of justice, what is the point? Just the opposite. Teaching people Torah when they are unjust just gives ammunition to bad people. Thus the teachers of think they are righteous because they suppose they are bringing people to Torah, but they themselves are unjust. The whole thing has become an Animal Farm with all the Orwellian nightmares associated with it.



(note 3) bringing them into orthodoxy enforces what every  schizoid tendencies.







14.2.12

I like Spinoza very much. If he had proved his point about pantheism I would probably not be knocking the different groups of chasidim that preach pantheism

I like Spinoza very much. If he had proved his point about pantheism I would probably not be knocking the different groups of chasidim that preach pantheism and also say that what they are teaching is authentic Judaism. But personally to me it does not seem that Spinoza proved his point. Several of the things that he writes right at the beginning are of interest. He uses Descartes' idea of a clear idea as being evidence that it is true. (I only wish this were so. I have a clear idea that I have a million dollars!)(Of course Descartes was mathematician, so in that context this idea makes sense but as a general rule it does not). Next Spinoza puts a restraint on substance that also is not intuitive and to me makes no sense; i.e. that no substance can effect another substance in any way. Next most of the proofs do not prove what he is saying and he uses many terms that he does not define. While I admit his work is admirable and an amazing attempt to create a rigorous philosophy as for me I think I will stick with the Rambam. I also appreciate that he does not claim to be teaching authentic Judaism as opposed to chasidut which also teaches pantheism (or panetheism)and yet teaches that it is authentic Judaism. In any case, pantheism is not the faith of the Torah.

This is the philosophy part. Also, Arizal does not agree with pantheism. To the Arial (and the Zohar), only Azilut is godliness, not the lower worlds. Also the Zimzum has nothing to do with pantheism. To use the issue of the Zimzum was a smoke screen made up by chasidim to try to show why the Gra put Chasidim (or rather "the disciples of the Magid from Metzritch") in cherem. but the Gra does not mention the zimum. Also it is not relevant. Hashem might have condensed his light or Himself and still everything might not be godliness; i.e. it could be he condensed his light or himself. Then he sent down his light into the empty space and made the lower worlds. That still does not mean that the lower world are Divine. It is simply irrelevant. And in fact, anyway it says in many places in the beginning of the Eitz Chayim that Hashem condensed Himself.
To sum this up simply the faith of the Torah is monotheism. This goes for the Rambam and Saadia Geon and the Arizal. The principle of creation something from nothing is the basis for Torah as the Rambam also holds. Something from nothing does not mean something from ain sof (infinity). So for chasidim to present pantheism as kabalah or as Judaism is not right.

4.2.12

Monotheism was a revolution. It was different from what came before it in that God is transcendent, and that he is not subject to a meta divine realm. Nature is not God. He is totally "other."


It is common in pagan religions for there to be  a fluid boundary between the divine, the human, and the natural worlds. They blur into one another. The distinction between them is soft.  So there's no real distinction between the worship of gods and the worship or people . Also because humans also emerge ultimately from this primordial realm there's a confusion of the boundary between the divine and the human that's common in pagan religion. These are all characteristics of Hasidim.