Toughen Up - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Toughen Up

Re: Andrew Cline’s Reality Awaits Obama:

Your analysis is absolutely on the mark, with one exception. If the US were to abandon Israel, there would be no material difference in the Muslim view of America. As is the case with all enemies of Islamism, the US would not be respected. By the tenets of its own world view or Qu’ran, only brute force is deserving of respect.
P.A. Melita
Charlottesville, Virginia

Bravo! This was a terrific essay! I have always observed that the problem with liberals and socialists (as if there were any real distinction) was the ignorance of human nature. Ignoring human nature is the mistake of liberal socialist “sheeple” to whom liberal socialist leaders owe their leadership. Liberals for some reason think their enlightened leaders are immune to the corruptibility of socialist leaders of the past. They think they must surely have evolved beyond greed and self interest because they articulate utopian visions of how much better the world will be if they give up their own free will and force the rest of us to also. We are headed towards a future that will test the gullibility of liberals and the civility of freedom-loving Americans. Let’s hope it doesn’t go too far, or there will be a disastrous end for liberals in the US.
Atlanta, Georgia

When a man of principle takes a stand, he does not need worry who will approve and who can be counted on as a friend. He takes his stand because it is right.  

In High Noon, Sheriff Will Cain (Gary Cooper) never asks to be popular or appreciated. He certainly makes no apology for making his stand: what is right is right. He lives his life by this principle and he is willing to die for it. Atticus Finch’s (To Kill a Mockingbird) popularity takes a nose dive when he defends Tom Robinson, a black man falsely accused of rape in a small Southern town during The Great Depression. Mr. Finch does what is right for the sake of doing right, knowing full well that he will pay a dear price for his principles. Some people come to appreciate these quality men, but this appreciation is never the motivation of such men. 

Mr. Obama, apologize for your own choices and character, but please feel free to refrain from apologizing for the actions of America’s history and military. We have always acted honorably under the command of our civilian and elected Commander in Chief. Our military has made mistakes, but we have always placed our honor above our lives. Mr. President, can you make the same statement?
I.M. Kessel

Re: Patrick O’Hannigan’s Pruning the Narrative of Murder:

Within Lutheranism, the faith of slain Dr. Tiller, a “saint” is different from what most folks assume — certainly unlike what Roman Catholicism and many other Christian denominations believe. Every Christian is a saint by God’s grace. This is one in the same as the Kingdom of God is now and is yet to come. What is not commonly understood is Lutherans describe the Christian as being at the same time both sinner and saint. This has nothing to do with a radical egalitarianism in which trophies are awarded to everyone. It is the Biblical recognition that even as God’s redeemed we still are unable to escape the bonds of original sin and the deceit of our own hearts. (See Paul’s dilemma of “new man” and “old man.” Romans 7:18-20)

Could Dr. Tiller have been a saint as Lutherans understand saints? Yes. Dr. Tiller, as profoundly misguided and evil in his actions as he was, could be covered by Christ in His own righteousness and made welcome in the kingdom of heaven. Christ’s mercy knows no bounds; but, as for Dr. Tiller, only He knows. It is forbidden to judge other men’s souls. We can, however, proclaim the Gospel and hope.

But this is not what Rev. Katherine Ragsdale, Rabbi Arthur Waskow, pundits and “fellow travelers” are about. Nor was it what the “supporters” who stood outside Reformation Lutheran Church this past Sunday handing out white flowers to one and all were about either. None were about taking the petitions of Lutheran Christianity seriously. They were more interested in cloaking the macabre barbarism of abortion. To this effect, they were constructing Dr. Tiller as a secular saint for the edification of all peoples. When they say “if men could get pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament” their conscience speaks against them. For them, abortion is one high sacrament to their ideal: the self-made/self-chosen individual unfettered by any duties he did not select for himself. Any suggestion that one and all have an inherited obligation to protect and nourish the unborn is the antithesis of the ideal.

In a few short months, Dr. Tiller will be forgotten. No one will hand out flowers in front of Reformation Lutheran Church and the foyer will be scrubbed clean. But the war between life and death among us will go on. Unfortunately, it is a war where even churches are not safe.
Mike Dooley

Re: Mark Tooley’s Florida’s Kissing Priest Ignites Catholic-Episcopal Row:

I’m sure my reaction to this “comic opera” is shared by many real Christians. Pox on both the Roman Catholic Church and the Episcopalian Church (if you can call this bunch of heretics a church). How in the world did this clown ever rise so far in the Roman Catholic hierarchy in the first place? Although I suppose one should be glad he prefers women to boys slightly past puberty. But as one reflects, it is not surprising at all that this poor substitute for the church of John Wesley and other great men would embrace this popinjay as it seems to have embraced every political and social fad and exhibitionist that comes down the pike. Lord help us all in this time of complete idiocy.
Jack Wheatley
Royal Oak, Michigan

Re: Betsy McCaughey’s Downgrading American Medical Care:

Rahm Emanuel, of the famous (or infamous) statement, “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste,” is not one to be intimidated by facts and figures. Health care is not in a crisis situation, but that does not mean he can’t create one at the behest of The One.  

Ms. McCaughey lays out point after point explaining why the health care system is nowhere near a crisis. She uses clear and precise data, but the moronic mainstream media will not carry this information. Fox, TAS and right wing radio will sound alarms, but the efforts are similar to a shepherd who only tends to the flock inside the gates; the wolves and other wild things are devour all others. The people who can make a true difference, our elected representatives from Republican Party, must stand up to the demagoguery of President Obama, or else they are uselessly siphoning money and power away from a party of true opposition. The Titan of the Teleprompter is making his case with soaring rhetoric, parlor tricks, Machiavellian maneuvers, smoke and mirrors, half-truths and outright lies. Giving the devil his due, the man is persuasive. Where are the leaders of the Right? Where is the voice of reason? Where is our deliverer?

The Party of Reagan is in disarray; they are lost in the sound and fury that is the expected aftermath of an election massacre, but these are not usual times and the republic has no time to lose. The Democrats have not had such a popular leader as Obama since John F. Kennedy. What is needed is now is a true leader for the people who do not want an overweening nanny state. Waiting for Jindal or Palin is waiting for Godot. Gingrich is a great idea man and would make a wonderful chief of staff, but America has found him to be a bitter pill to swallow. Somewhere in the hallowed halls of the houses of Congress must be at least one member of the Republican Party who can pick up Reagan’s torch and light our way out of this maelstrom. 

The health care system that this administration plans to install robs us of our independence and steals from our children; it will make them indentured servants to the state. This health care situation may not be the last crisis, but if a true leader does not soon emerge, the next (and real) crisis might well be the coup de grace.
I.M. Kessel

Re: Wlady Pleszczynski’s Fathers and Sons:

Of the many frustrations in the lives of great men, their frequent inability to pass the baton surely ranks near the top. Though knowledge can be exchanged, good character cannot be transferred from one man to another, only directions on where and how it may be developed, and the vision of one man is too often another man’s blindness. It is God’s way that we come to Him as He leads us, and not on our own terms. We so desperately could use another WFB right now, but it is not our call. Perhaps God is raising up for us another to lead us out of this wilderness. My prayer is that we find him, and soon.
Mike Showalter
Austin, Texas

Re: Mark Hyman’s Obama’s Enemies List Grows:

And we’re now expected to neither recognize nor point out the similarities to the same pattern of behavior by the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, and our own lovable tyrant, Hugo Chavez!

“Oh! [downcast eyes]. We’re not supposed to say that [embarrassed giggle]. Of course I didn’t mean it [self-consciousness chortle]. Of course there are no similarities between the jackboots of the Obama administration, of the Soviet Union, of Nazi Germany, and of Hugo Chavez [knowing chuckle, with knowing laughter from knowing audience].”

P.S. — Thanks to Judge Sotomayor for that technique. It’s a gem!
A. C. Santore

Re: Quin Hillyer’s Questions for Sotomayor:

Well, Quin, once again, you’ve hit the proverbial nail directly on the head. In my opinion, a lot of good it will do us. But, stranger things have happened. Maybe the staff of the Republican senators on the Judiciary Committee read TAS and take notes. Don’t hold your breath. Meanwhile, since we’ve all been absorbed with trying to master the wisdom of this Latino woman Socrates who is aspiring to secure a seat on the highest court in the land, there is a priceless photo on Drudge, of our daring First Lady, apparently giving the evilest of evil eyes to the charming wife of French President, Nicolas Sarkozy, Carla Bruni, who is looking skyward, perhaps for Divine rescue. Now what do you suppose this subdued little cat fight is all about? Maybe, our leader’s attempt to tilt us “frenchward” is a bit premature, despite the “with every breath” efforts of the once and future FOREX champion, Mr. George Soros. As we self-destruct under national socialism, France refuses to go down without a fight. Could it be that the honeymoon is finally over for The One in Europe? We can only hope for change!

Hey, Carla, you go girl!
Mike Showalter
Austin, Texas

Re: Roger Scruton’s Farewell to Judgment:

Roger Scruton’s “Farewell to Judgment” raises a question of vital importance for the future of human culture. I only wish he had defined the role of philosophy in the desired “restoration of judgment to its central place in the humanities.” As I see it, part of the debility of the humanities in present-day education is due to the fact that philosophy has lost its central place within the humanities, and that in turn has been due to the failure of philosophers to see philosophy as distinct from and in a sense opposed to science. Philosophy was supposed to seek objective knowledge. When it was seen that only empirical science can yield verifiable knowledge, philosophers imitated science and broke up philosophy into specialized disciplines that at best could only be pseudo-sciences. Philosophy, to play its proper and vital role in human culture, must give up the vain dream of yielding objective knowledge of the external world and go back to its true task of giving us insight into our inner reality by examining our ideals and values. This is a task that philosophy shares with poetry, drama, fiction, and art.
D. R. Khashaba

Re: Mark Tooley’s Here Come the Churches:

Thanks for giving the Presbyterian Church (USA) 2.9 million members. I wish it were so! But the official documents of the church list our membership at somewhere between 2.2 and 2.3 million members.

We are declining at the rate of approximately one 115-member church a day.
Donald D. Denton, Jr., D.Min., LPC, LMFT
Richmond, Virginia

Great piece. Unfortunately, you give my beloved Presbyterian Church (USA) too much credit. At last count (2007), our membership was no where near 2.9 million, but 2,209,546. Certainly even lower than that figure today.

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