The Post Truth World of Educated College Kids

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There is one aspect of the American elections that completely fascinates me. It is the view that has been widely put around in virtually all of our media that the people who voted for Donald Trump were “non college educated”. Largely it is the uneducated white working class who for various reasons, including racism and fascism, but primarily stupidity, voted in Mr. Trump. Thankfully there are those on the Left who are beginning to realise that this is not quite the whole truth.

My issue is with the assumption that college educated means intelligent. It appears as though both in the United States and the United Kingdom, College /University education is more likely to mean indoctrinated rather than educated. At a recent debate in the University of Abertay, Dundee, I was informed by one of the students that the university was “entirely liberal” and did not really permit alternative points of view. To a large degree universities seem to have become places where people are taught what to think, rather than how to think. They have become places where exams are passed and students are prepared for life in liberal society by an unhealthy dose of illiberal indoctrination.

The infantilisation of our students that occurs through this indoctrination is seen in several ways.   Safe spaces, hurt rooms, the priority of emotion over reason, intolerance in the name of tolerance, and riots in the name of love, are all symptoms of a deeply immature culture.

This was seen the day after the election when Professors at many universities in the United States cancelled their Wednesday classes in order to help students cope with the apparent trauma of the election results. Students were offered therapy dogs, safe spaces, and even in several instances a cry room complete with colouring books and crayons!  In some ways I don’t blame the students – they have been treated like children and then fed a diet of fear, ignorance and post-truth self-righteousness.  Little wonder that they crack up when their carefully constructed artificial world falls apart!

 

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Brendan O’Neill critique of this is spot on:

Stanford University is straight-up offering its students psychological counselling to deal with Trump’s victory. You know what’s worse for America than Trump? This. This cultivation of a new coddled, cushioned, infantilised generation trained to think that every slight and disappointment will scar them for life. Snowflakes are far more likely than Rust Belt Trumpites to bring about the downfall of the American Republic and its Blessings of Liberty.

 Some on the left are beginning to understand what is going on. The following two articles are well worth reading.

 This fascinating and superb article from the Washington Post – https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2016/11/09/trump-won-because-college-educated-americans-are-out-of-touch/?utm_term=.cf21c4d46db0

Religion in most secular institutions, for instance, is at best thought of as an important sociological phenomenon to understand — but is very often criticized as an inherently violent, backward force in our culture, akin to belief in fairies and dragons. Professors are less religious than the population as a whole. Most campus cultures have strictly (if not formally) enforced dogmatic views about the nature of gender, sexual orientation, a woman’s right to choose abortion, guns and the role of the state as primary agent of social change. If anyone disagrees with these dogmatic positions they risk being marginalized as ignorant, bigoted, fanatical or some other dismissive label.

 Another key article is here from the New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/08/opinion/sunday/a-confession-of-liberal-intolerance.html

Yancey, the black sociologist, who now teaches at the University of North Texas, conducted a survey in which up to 30 percent of academics said that they would be less likely to support a job seeker if they knew that the person was a Republican.

The discrimination becomes worse if the applicant is an evangelical Christian. According to Yancey’s study, 59 percent of anthropologists and 53 percent of English professors would be less likely to hire someone they found out was an evangelical.

 The fact is that in American universities, and I suspect in many British universities, there is a groupthink and an exclusivity that is narrowing the capacity to think, and widening the division between those who perceive themselves as the elites, and the rest of us. Universities, as educational corporations,  have become the seedbed of a new anti-democracy that basically believes that anyone who does not think as they do, does not really deserve the vote, or at least any vote that really matters.

This Case of a professor forced to resign because of his pro_Trump views is indicative of they hysteria in US academia.

I think one of the most incisive things I read about this was Brendan O’Neill’s opinion piece in the Spectator – http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2016/11/sneering-response-trumps-victory-reveals-exactly-won/

This nasty, reactionary turn against democracy by so many of the well-educated both explains the victory of Trump, which neatly doubles up as a slap in the face of the establishment, and confirms why democracy is more important today than it has ever been. Because it really would be folly, madness in fact, to let an elite that so little understands ordinary people, and in fact loathes them, to run society unilaterally. Now that would be dangerous, more dangerous than Trump.

There is another side to this. This belief in their own self-righteousness and knowledge, combined with the lack of ability to rationally think or seek to understand anyone else’s point of view, and the reliance on emotion actually leads to the very thing they claim to be decrying – Hate.   It is almost beyond parody that a tremendous fuss was created by the press about whether Donald Trump and his supporters would actually accept the result of the election, but when Hillary supporters riot, the silence is deafening.

It is a sad indictment of our own press in this country that newspapers like the Sunday Herald can carry articles commenting on the horrific hate crimes against ethnic minorities in the United States, as extreme right-wing groups seek to take advantage of the heightened tension caused by the election and to be quite frank, Trump’s own intemperate language; whilst at the same time failing to report or comment on those on the opposite side who engage in the same hate. In particular this threat against Milania Trump would I suspect have been on the front page of the Guardian and the main news item on the BBC if it had been made against Hillary Clinton or Michelle Obama.

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And imagine what would have happened if a Fox News journalist had suggested on the election of a president Hillary Clinton that “it’s about time for a presidential assassination”! The hate police would have been out in full force and my Twitter feed would have been full of liberals condemning the hatred and equating it with the killing of Jo Cox. This is an actual quote. But it was about the election of Donald Trump as president and it came from the Guardian journalist Monisha Rajesh.

 

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The notion that to vote in the wrong way is a hate crime is an indication of the kind of Orwellian society to which the new college educated class are taking us. They are a cosseted generation, who, in the age of social media, are unable to deal with criticism or any negation of their obviously correct views. Their instinct is to ban, silence or to throw a tantrum. This is in effect what is happening on the streets of the US just now.

This is how Paul Joseph Watson sums it up –  (I post this on here because it has some very interesting information and footage but please be aware that it contains some offensive language – so don’t watch it if you are offended by expletives – I am not condoning his language – its ugly but sadly his points are correct and some of the reactions are even worse).

There is an enormous danger here. Especially to our democracy. Just as after the Brexit election there were those in our elites who said that ordinary people should not have a vote, because they were too stupid to see the lies, so after the American presidential election there have been those who are saying the same thing. I found it very worrying that a narrative of the past couple of days is trying to say that Google were to blame for the election result because they allowed the spread of ‘false stories’.   We are only a couple of steps away from the demand that a free press/internet be muzzled, or that only the right stories can get out. This will of course be done in the name of truth. Freedom of religion and a free press are the foundation of any democracy. It is little wonder those who hate real democracy want to see them taken away. In a post-truth world those who want only their own truth to prevail will tell lies and suppress in order to preserve ‘the truth’.

And again it is a fascinating thing that a world in which academia has been dominated by the meta-narrative that there are no meta-narratives, is now suddenly crying truth! The Oxford dictionary word of the year has just been announced as “post-truth”. Because you see people only voted for Brexit because of lies. And they only voted for Donald Trump because of lies. If only they had The truth or the college education to understand that truth, then everything in the liberal paradise would be fine. And so our liberal elites will now look for ways that they can indoctrinate and suppress not only the college educated, but also the rest of the populous.  And as a result they will play into the hands of the extremist Right.  Both feed of each other.  A plague on both your houses!

Even as I write this the following advert has appeared in my email:

You can Help Trump Extremism – Lies, Paranoia, Fears, Distrust. With populism sweeping away elites and institutions, and fake news driving out truth, the world needs access to its greatest minds more than ever. Only informed, trustworthy, independent, and above all fact-based analysis can enable the world to understand – and confront – the mounting forces of global disorder.

 This from a publication sponsored by, amongst others, t the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation. One suspects that this fact-based analysis will include only the facts that suit the predetermined liberal narrative!

 From a Christian perspective none of this is new. The devil is the father of lies. Lies which he claims are true. The world is a mess of confusion and has always been since the Fall, post truth!   But there is one who came who is The Truth. In these dark and confusing days, I am delighted that there is light and clarity in Christ!

Trump is on the Throne? Revelation ch.4

 


19 thoughts on “The Post Truth World of Educated College Kids

  1. A University educated Trump voter here. I held my nose when I did it, but the very reaction of liberals that is sweeping America right now, is why I voted Trump. I didn’t want to, but I couldn’t see any better way to change the political dialogue in my country. Believe it or not, the intolerance of the “tolerant” is being revealed and the so-called “intolerant” continue to be silently tolerant.

  2. Yup and there you have it with the prince of the world being the father of all lies. Lies which the political, academic, celebrity and media benefit from with power.

    It’s like Ponochio being tempted into the pleasure fair where over time boys are turned into donkeys and live a life of servility.

    With the Scottish referendum, Brexit and the American election people have been better informed than ever before. At no time in history has the establishment had to serve the people as much as now lest they lose their position of power.

    And that is a good thing.

  3. I don’t know how others feel after reading a write up like this. I simply thank the Lord that it puts more fuel in fire to declare and proclaim with power, courage, strength and boldness the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ to the ignorant liberal academic mindset who have the exact same problem I have. SIN.

  4. I have to admit I have been avoiding social media since this result because of the gloating of one side and the blame game on the other. Also I am very gutted by the result. In many ways it, along with Brexit, signals a potential death of my world view and how I see other people.

    I think you are a little harsh about the Stanford students even if you, in some ways, don’t blame them. You yourself have wept at the result of a democratic vote. A vote that challenged want you thought of that institution. A vote that separated you from that institution. A vote that represented a battle that was lost by your side. You recovered through prayer and Bible readings. Others have therapy dogs and colouring books. Each to their own I suppose.

    I wonder about your “artificial world” line. I suppose that indeed it is an artificial one but it was one that many hoped would become real in time. And you also have to ask, why are they constructing an artificial world anyway. The currently constructed real world is a harsh place and many attempts to reduce this harshness have failed or are taking too long for some. The problem is that resistance to change comes from the ruling elite as opposed to your fantasy liberal elite. In the US that is the right wing, socially conservative people who run the Senate, Congress and soon the White House. They do not care for the poor and only care for making the rich richer. They are the ones who deny that Black Lives Matter is important. They are the ones who rely on illegal immigrant labour in their business and on their land but denounce immigration reform and roads to legality. They are the ones who reach into the lives of women and control them and their reproductive rights (not just abortion but birth control as well). They are the ones that say climate change is a conspiracy against the USA and do not care about the future state of the planet. I dont think its a bad thing that some people feel upset at being unable to change this. That said, the rioting is wrong.

    I do find US universities fascinating. The best religious scholars, academics and thinkers are in the best religious universities. And at those institutions people who do not share the views of the students and the institutional leadership are also labelled. Look what happened to Larycia Hawkins, Tom Oord and a number of staff at Shorter University. Both sides are living in their own bubbles and protecting those bubbles from outsiders and other points of view. If liberal universities need to change, so do the religious ones. Academia is the worse for this but I do not know who will change first. Of course, one of the main problems on both sides of the Atlantic is the cost of tuition. Universities are indeed corporate places and students are now customers. Customers choose brands that they most identify with so will defend themselves and the brands they pay for. The liberals want their worldview and the religious want theirs and they are drifting further and further apart.

    Brendans quote is interesting because a slim majority of white well-educated voters chose Trump. Yet there is no comment on that little race loaded fact.

    The hardest thing to do, for many including myself and about both Brexit and Trump, is to “seek to understand anyone else’s point of view” without acknowledging there are errors in peoples knowledge. How can you acknowledge someone elses point of view when that point of view diminishes you as a person and seeks to limit you and your rights. As a liberal white person I can point out how wrong it is to welcome the endorsement of the KKK and how damaging that is. But I am a white person. How can a black person sit with someone and understand their point of view when they know that the person happily takes endorsements from people who want black people subjugated by white people? Can you imagine that conversation “I, as a black person, acknowledge your hate of me and was wondering what I can do to mitigate that?”. And now we have a white supremacist and anti-semite as the incoming Chief Strategist of the Trump White House. Who should be reaching out to understand who at this tragedy?

    Whilst I dont think a vote for someone is a hate crime it does reveal the difference between someone thinking they are not racist/homophobic/misogynist/anti-semitic and someone who is anti those things. Change the word racist to rapist. Its just as easy for someone to say they are not a rapist. They are not doing it. But rapes still happen. Being a non-rapist does nothing to stop rape. Being anti-rape, seeking to minimise and end rapes, to change culture that makes rape acceptable, to be an activist against rape and not supporting rapists is being anti-rape. Being a non-racist etc but enabling others through votes is just as bad. It is not being anti-racist (saw this concept from Marlon James a while ago). This is why the election result is such a crushing blow to so many people who, regardless of their education, are vulnerable to abuse, hate and violence. For example, where did those school children get the idea to chant “build the wall” at latino kids in their school. It wasn’t from the liberal university students and professors.

    Google and Facebook are platforms that already make editorial decisions. Google Ads have controls and we have seen how bad Facebook is at picture censorship. I dont think its unreasonable to expect links that purport to convey news to contain accurate facts. This isnt the same as opinions or views. I disagree with pretty much every article on National Review and Patheos Evangelical but they are on Facebook with wide audiences.

    You are just as post truth as someone like me. I have shown you peoples opinions on things like immigration, the Brexit £350m and other Brexit topics and you reject it because it does not chime with your truth. The OED definition of “circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than emotional appeals” covers your responses to people’s reasons for voting Brexit just as much as it does mine.

    But this post truth thing has been around for a while. The perception of crime and the desired punishment to it is at odds with the facts of actual crime numbers and the efficiency of prisons. Even my most recent employment in the disability sector faces this problem. The public think that £24 (mostly disability, then jobseekers when working cash-in-hand) of every £100 of benefits is fraudulently claimed. Official estimates are that just 70 pence in every £100 is fraudulent.

    You do not accept other peoples views as valid and seek to change them. You were against homosexuals being married and acted against that. You view paganism as one of the greatest threats facing us. You write, speak and publish on your opinions and aspirations for the country you live in. Why do you think its bad for other people to do the same?

    1. So many things wrong with this Douglas! and some right! Let me focus on where we disagree…

      Weeping at the result of a democratic vote is one thing – adults needing cry rooms and therapy dogs whilst proclaiming that those who disagree with them are idiots is another.

      The notion that these college students are those who care for the poor – given that they are at elitist universities – is laughable.

      You continue the narrative of attempting to paint everyone who voted for Trump as a racist. Your inability to allow shades of grey or differences of points of view is an example of the kind of new authoritarianism which the liberal elites are promoting in universities such as this. you can justify anything by your name-calling.

      the idea that abuse hate and violence are solely associated with one particular camp, and not another is just blind!

      and no I don’t reject articles that you show me. I sometimes don’t have time to read all that you send – but I accept what I know is true, question what I’m not sure of and reject what I know is false. As a Christian I have the advantage here! Because I don’t believe that I have all the truth, and my identity is not tied in with any particular version of politics. I just follow Christ – who is the truth.

      it is beyond delicious that academics who have for years been telling us that there is no such thing as absolute truth now start talking about post truth – just because they have not got their particular way.

      And I do accept other people’s views as valid. I have no problem with their views been published. That is the very point of my article. The new liberals are so scared of being challenged at any point that they seek to silence and ban those who disagree with them.

      1. “Weeping at the result of a democratic vote is one thing – adults needing cry rooms and therapy dogs whilst proclaiming that those who disagree with them are idiots is another.”

        On the therapeutic side I disagree but then I have run events with spaces set aside for emotional space and I like dogs. I even once ran an event with a prayer space which to me is an exercise in futility but was important to others. I am not arrogant enough to decide how others regain their emotional equilibrium. Calling people idiots lacks a certain finesse I suppose from the perspective of someone who prefers using one word to express their disdain for a democratic decision. Ichabod.

        “The notion that these college students are those who care for the poor – given that they are at elitist universities – is laughable.”

        Well, ignoring the fact that I covered more than just the poor which you have just glossed over lets look at your logic. It must now be laughable that you care for and worry about Christians in places that kill them for their belief. You are safe and sound and protected in Dundee. You have no real threat to your life because of your faith. You are as protected, privileged, safe and secure as the college students you dismiss. If liberal students are not allowed to care for the poor (and with the epic bursary system in the US there will be poor liberal students) why are you allowed to care for those who are not exactly like you?

        “You continue the narrative of attempting to paint everyone who voted for Trump as a racist. Your inability to allow shades of grey or differences of points of view is an example of the kind of new authoritarianism….”

        Yeah, calling out racism is authoritarian…….
        And people can have different points of view to me. The issue then comes down to whose points of views inform and direct public policy, legislation and other areas of decision making. And in a democracy these views are contested. But there is a difference. I do not like or approve of, lets say, white people who are racist. It is their opinion that is wrong and needs to be rejected, challenged and changed. But I do not want to subjugate them or see them as less than me as a human being. The issue is an idea. A racist however is not just daintily arguing against the ideas of a black person. They are arguing against that person being treated as an equal. The issue is treating human beings as human beings. Where are the shades of grey in white supremacy David? Really?

        “the idea that abuse hate and violence are solely associated with one particular camp, and not another is just blind!”

        You do it for one side and I do it for the other I suppose. At least in my reply to your post I noted that the rioting was wrong. You cant even do that for the Latino school kids who suffered the Trump inspired racism in their school. Like with Brexit you cannot seem to accept that there are people who are nasty towards other people and see these results as a vindication of their views and celebrate with public expressions of hate.

        “and no I don’t reject articles that you show me. I sometimes don’t have time to read all that you send – but I accept what I know is true, question what I’m not sure of and reject what I know is false.”

        On my Facebook wall you have questioned qualitative research where people have been asked their opinion and given narrative answers.

        “And I do accept other people’s views as valid. I have no problem with their views been published. That is the very point of my article. The new liberals are so scared of being challenged at any point that they seek to silence and ban those who disagree with them.”

        Silence and ban? Really? Addressing a category error is really not the same as silencing or banning. You need a bigger tin-foil hat.

    2. Douglas,

      Then you and I have polar opposites in how we feel. I was delighted with the result.

      The Scottish referendum, Berxit and the US presidential election are reprsentative of a movement. A movement sending a message out to political, media, celebrity and academic eilites that they will have to serve and not dictate if they are to maintain positions of power.

      That can only be a good thing.

      A death in your worldview and how you perceive people potentially? Well, in order for fruit to grow a seed must die.

      It’s the same for all of us when we let go of and grieve the loss of something which may have been a comfort to us at one point but is holding us back as freedom calls.

      1. Adam

        “The Scottish referendum, Berxit and the US presidential election are reprsentative of a movement. A movement sending a message out to political, media, celebrity and academic eilites that they will have to serve and not dictate if they are to maintain positions of power.”

        I wouldnt have put the Scottish referendum in with the other two as it was more of a movement rather than an elite who supported it. My main problem with Brexit and the US election is that it is, as your say, a cry to serve. But serve what and who and why? What is the real critique of the current way the countries were governed? What does Brexit achieve? What policies will change? Who will be better served now as opposed to when we were in the EU? Who has been dictating what to whom? Who is forcing people to believe and do what? There are problems with our economic system but Brexit does nothing to change that. We have people in power who will delight in a neo-liberal playground where no rules apply.

        The US election is worse as, like with Brexit, there is no real plan to address the concerns that people have. No real policies to do anything really other than make the 1% richer. Again, what was dictated to the American people that means Trump is the solution. The US has been run by right wing elites for years and will be for the foreseeable future. What is the “movement” as you put it wanting from Trump? Healthcare, all of it, will be privatised. Peversely, pork barrel politics will return (Republicans not wanting to spend anything on an Obama measure will back all Trump expenditure). The Rust Belt will continue to rust becuase if US firms bring manufacturing home it will to use robots rather than labour. If Trump goes with trariffs then Walmark is where the price rises will be felt the most.

        “Well, in order for fruit to grow a seed must die.”

        But so many people, not part of your movement but who are vulnerable, need help and support have found equality laws to help them. Protect them. Brexit and the US election have cast them among the thorns and they will be choked.

        Minorities and people who are different from what your movement considers to be normal or ideal have been blamed for way things are at the moment. Soon, when things do not get any better, they will be blamed for that as well. Which is not going to be pretty and its only going to be the political, media, celebrity and academic “elites” that say this is wrong. And because they have been demonised, no-one will listen. And the vulnerable will continue to suffer.

        I am all for freedom but when it is at the expense of another human being then it means nothing to me. I’d rather be trapped with minorities, the vulnerable and those who do not meet society’s “norms” than the freedom that Brexit and Trump offer.

      2. Douglas,

        “A cry to serve. But serve what and who and why?”

        A vaild question. And with uncertainty comes fear and your questions that follow require facing fear which takes courage.

        So you agree about this being a movement of the people, a cry to be served as you put it. Interesting that you call it my movement. You mention people “who are vulnerable, need help and support.” OK such as blacks, Hispanics and Asians in the US all of which had between a 7% and 11% gain in the vote for Trump over Romney. and those on the lowest incomes which had 16% or so gain towards Trump?

        Equality may be able to provide some solutions but according to the vote of the black, Hispanic and Asian American people that gave Trump the victory, change and uncertainty in the president elect and his administration is preferable to the present establishment. So equality on its as the cultural narrative is not working in the eyes of the people it claims to serve.

        Those rioting crying and protesting against democracy that gave them the right to free speech and to protest are hardly interested in equality. At lest not any “equality” that is not equality on their terms. and that is a problem you have with equality. When you introduce equality it is equality as the political, academic, celebrity, and media, the cultural elites determine equality to be. What you don’t get is equality for everyone what you get is an Orwellian 1984 servility to big brother. The most convincing way to be trapped into oppression is for you to be made to think you are free when you are not.

        It’s impossible to know how things are going to pan out but the movement we talk about is giving power back to people and requiring those in positions of privilege to be serving the people if they are going to continue to hold their positions of power. Again, that can only be a good thing.

        As for the fear you have shown with uncertainty, the only thing I can say about this, and you won’t like it, is tat perfect love casts out all fear and only God loves perfectly. As Marx put it religion is the sigh of the oppressed.

        “Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions” Karl Marx

      3. “It’s impossible to know how things are going to pan out but the movement we talk about is giving power back to people and requiring those in positions of privilege to be serving the people if they are going to continue to hold their positions of power.”

        Which people? The current people benefitting are the ones at the top of Trump tower in New York. That will not change. Some of the recent appointments to the Trump administration have a long track record of acting against the people. Its not a stretch to see Mike Pompeo authorising waterboarding and rectal feeding on US citizens in the name of fighting radical Islamic terrorism.

        “What you don’t get is equality for everyone what you get is an Orwellian 1984 servility to big brother.”

        Really? Where is the destruction of the individual in what I have written. Have we not agreed that I disagree with Davids views yet will not stand in his way of having them? People can believe what they want but is it the destruction of Davids individual self that is the result of same sex marriage? Is it the negation of who he is and what he believes if we allow people to have an operation to change their sex?

        But if we look at 1984 we can see so interesting comparisons to religions. Religion is, basically, a type of thought control. Get it right and you are rewarded with access to heaven. Religious leaders and theologians set the rules and act as the thought police. Think differently and they will bar your access. What about Anti-sex and the cultivation of irrational hatred? Sex in 1984 has rules to control people and thats the same as religion. Sex and marriage is only for the creating more party members rather than love and pleasure. That sounds familiar. Winstons second thought crime was to keep a piece of glass with coral in it. In 1984 people should only have what they need for existence rather than luxury or aesthetic reasons. There are religions today that still follow that format. I think the two minutes of hate and comparing it to worship may be too much but religious leaders have stood in front of crowds and whipped them into frenzies of hate and violence. A more modern comparison could be the megachurches and the two minutes of demanding donations for airplanes. Religions have and continue to kill people for believing the wrong thing. Not sure who has been killed merely because the dont believe in equality.

      4. So many presuppositions. So little attempt to understand the views of those who disagree with you! Religion is not basically a form of thought control (at least not all religion) – As for being killed because they don’t believe in ‘equality’…here’s a challenge for you – take some time and try to work out what is wrong with that statement!

      5. Douglas,

        I am sorry I can’t take your last comment seriously.

        David is right about presuppositions, little attempt at understanding a different view to the one you hold to or working things out. Put another way – little evidence of critical engagement.

        So just a couple of things I would point out.

        “Religion is, basically, a type of thought control.”

        Thanks for saying that – a perfect example ironically of Orwellian controlled thinking. What you have with the kind of equality you advocate is a mixture of equality and Marxism where one is indistinguishable from the other. In this worldview the bourgeoisie are the “religious” with a presumed privilege. However this “privilege” is a conspiracy theory to try to make out that those who are non-religious are somehow oppressed, when they are not. So yes Orwellian 1984 with the establishment dictating the cultural narrative, Trump as a hate figure and it being “though crime” to be attached in thinking to religion.

        “I am all for freedom but when it is at the expense of another human being then it means nothing to me.”

        In 1984 “freedom is slavery” is one mantra of the government of Oceania. That sounds kinda similar to what you claim about religion being a form of thought control and freedom at the expense of another. Religion brings comfort to many in this life in the difficulties faced with being human. It also offers hope when facing the possibility of oblivion. Remove religion for people who have these benefits of it and what you don’t do is remove control. What you do is remove comfort and hope. And that is cruel. It’s what happened when Marxism went to Leninism and Stalinism and Russia became to all intents and purposes atheist. Of course there are healthy examples of when freedom comes at the expense of another human being. When for example someone, anyone, breaks free from oppression it comes at the expense of the oppressor’s power being taken away to oppress.

        Care to give it another go?

  5. I was very impressed by a soldier who was interviewed by the BBC on Remembrance Sunday; a Scots lad who had been badly injured. His father came to see him in Hospital in Solihull and said simply, “You’ve no legs! Move on.” And he did.

  6. Thanks for this David. I remember when I first heard the phrase ‘post-truth’ used and I thought, “now here’s a buzz-word I can finally agree with! This exactly describes the problem with the cynical campaigning pushing for same-sex marriage, and that which fought against Brexit etc, and which regular people saw right through!”. However, it seems that when the liberal elite use it, they intend to indict those movements which set themselves against the establishment. As you say, post truth is not a new phenomenon, and even post truth can be used in a post truthful way!

  7. Post-truth.
    Evidently the term has been around for some time but brought to the fore this year, primarily through Brexit.

    According to the President of OEDictionaries it is due to a distrust of facts offered up by the Establishment.

    It is defined, as David points out, as, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.”

    Since objective truth has been conflated to subjective truth, that truth is what it means to me, through a post modern establishment chronic assault on objectivity, in politics, education and culture, it is beyond irony that those same people now bleat that we now live post-truth , especially when what passes for truth is little more than a statement of opinion or speculation with no or little correspondence with what is, to reality.

    The correspondence aspect of truth has been assaulted, shredded, from Nietzsche to Foucault and numerous others, encapsulated in the Manic Street Preachers “This is my truth, tell me yours.” Yes , shaped and defined as OED, “emotion and personal belief.”

    So from post modern- there is no truth but what you make it and that is the absolute, objective, truth, to post post-modern bleatings that the absolute truth that there is no truth is now so post truth. Yes indeed, an opinion is merely a statement of belief that something is true, which may or may not be supported by objective facts, or correspond to reality. We are fed so much opinion masquerading as fact that our minds are flatulent with fallacies.

    “You will not certainly die…” is the Genesis (3:4) of post truth.

  8. Religion as thought control.
    That is a complete misunderstanding of Christianity.
    I understand far more as a Christian than I ever did, nor could, for 47 years as a secular humanist in the legal profession.
    But last Saturday I heard a quote I heard from J. John in 2007 at a Christmas evangelistic out reach. When he was converted his mother said he’d been been brainwashed. He replied, Mother if you knew what was in my brain, you’d be pleased it has been washed. He is a great communicator but his message was so uncomfortable and uncompromising that we thought that my wife’s unbelieving childhood friend would never speak to her again.
    Winsome, it was not.
    Within a year the friend had made a death bed confession of faith.
    J.John was also instrumental in the conversion of a local renowned gangland leader.
    May all those partaking in evangelism be encouraged. Results may not be known in this life. Keep sowing the promised seed, that is Christ Jesus, the LORD.

  9. Excuse me if I missed any comments that have already answered my thought/question (I watch my 3 grandchildren and that gives little time to process everything.) : The left wants only the “elite thinkers” to vote; then why are they angry that Trump won the electoral vote (which was wisely put into effect by the founding fathers to balance out the vote of the mob) and claim that Hillary won the mob vote which is the only “good” vote. That alone reveals the double standard lie. But we have become a nation too lazy to form our own opinions by careful study of the facts presented on both sides.

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