Why are so many Middle Eastern Islamic countries, which in the past was at the forefront of intellectual knowledge, now associated with backward states? It's the terror of the 10percent who are religious zealots who threaten any new ideas, and have been for a millennium...
update: BelmontClub's essay also asks the question that no one else is asking: why are we allowing the PC (and this includes Islam but it not limited to them, given the way the left is trying to stop free speech by Christians) to stop the freedom of speech of others?
Criticism of Islam was also forbidden by these conservatives, particularly by foreigners. In the past these conservatives have used persuasion and coercion to force the majority to resist change of any sort. Thus the early practice of Moslem scholars translating ancient Greek, Roman and other books into Arabic and then discussing all these new ideas was brought to a halt. The conservatives considered these foreign ideas and concepts poisonous and unIslamic. Thus after a few centuries of being a beacon of knowledge, the Islamic world began to fade. The Turks revived it for a while, by conquering most of the Middle East, but even the Turks eventually found themselves dragged down by corruption and opposition to new ideas. What used to be the wealthiest region in the world became one of the poorest. Were it not for the Western world developing an appetite for oil, which Arabia had a lot of the Middle East would be the poorest region in the world.
… Put it this way. Suppose the Necromonger cult invaded the earth. Could they claim to be a political party? Could they claim ‘religious freedom’. How do you deal with the Necromongers?
------------------------------------------Donald Thornton, writing in the Thy Black Man asks the same question. What happens when you put militant ideologies in civil society and protect them as you would the Kiwanis or the Rotary? What happens when the piranha swim with the goldfish? Well, the goldfish get et.
so why is China threatening all of her neighbors?
StrategyPage also reports on the background of China's threats against India, the Philippines, and Japan...
China is pushing the "evil Japanese" meme to stir up their people (so they ignore the corruption, the increase in unemployment, and now the possible collapse of their economy).
so why the Philippines? They need the oil/natural gas in the West Philippines sea, but it's part of expansion because they see America as weak...and promoting the idea that all those countries are out to get them, not just Japan, just fits into the meme of distracting folks from problems at home.
Is there a common goal between Islamicists who hate America and the peace loving radical Left? Discussion with links here.
I think they both believe the old lies of the KGB and Chomsky that America is at the heart of the evil of the world, and like the environmentalists who think living a nice dirty poor life free of chemicals is utopia, they posit a nice utopia that will never really exist.
I love conspiracy theories: The problem is when too many people start believing that nonsense.
But things might not be as bad as the headlines scream:
TMP Barnett points out that the Mariotts are planning to build a lot of hotels, not only in the North African area but in places like Rwanda...
Investors don't risk that kind of money out of charity, and I wonder if anyone notices that Mariott is run by an LDS family....Why do I bring it up? Because when I was in the National Guard in Idaho, we learned a lot of those ex LDS missionaries were often called up for emergencies, because of their experience overseas and their language skills.
One wonders if Romney has "on the ground" info via the church rumor mill in the same way I often know what is going on via the Catholic rumor mill, which doesn't always agree with the NYTimes...The Vatican for years has been a valuable source of information of what is going on because they have members all over the place who send reports to headquarters, and I always think of Salt Lake city as "Vatican lite".
One difference: Catholics tend to be the rich old money elite, and the poor. The Mormons, like the Evangelicals in South America and Asia, are part of the growing middle class in countries that in the past were poor. Both groups stress honesty and hard work and that our relationship to God is not just in prayer and rituals, but is shown in our everyday work.
These ideas have far reaching consequences: for example, they give the poor in the cities a new ethic to replace the "liberation theology" pushed by clueless Catholic missionaries in both South America and here in the Philippines. But they also give the entrepeneur class an ethic that says building a business (which hires people and results in prosperity for oneself, one's employees, and one's country) is also doing God's work. In other words, as Luther put it: A housewife can serve God as well as a nun, and by extention a businessman can serve God and help the poor more than one who merely donates a tithe to a local charity.
So in both places, they are at the forefront of freedom and prosperity.
This idea is the most revolutionary in the modern world, but rarely noted by the elites.