On the Surface

Cool beans. I got a Surface with Windows RT (32 GB). Sad to say that after only about a week of usage I had it act up on me. The Windows key on the glass (and the Touch Cover keyboard) was sticking. I got a new Type Cover keyboard for it from the retail store to compensate me for the time waiting for a replacement Surface, but in the meantime, it looks like it is working (at least for now) with the new keyboard.



To be fair, it wasn’t a physical problem but a setting. I guess either me or one of the kids inadvertently enabled “sticky keys” from the Accessibility options.

The inconsistency of an evolution-based ethic

Was just thinking again of the confusion I have around some of the rhetoric and thinking from the “save the world” evolutionists. You know, the folks who ardently hold to naturalistic materialism but who nonetheless agitate for “social change” or global warming mitigation, or the homeless, etc. etc. I guess what I’m not following is how on the one hand, they believe the universe is a closed system come about by happenstance, but on the other, they are bothered by what goes on in the world. What we see is what is there and what is, is. But yet they are always trying to change what is. Huh.

If, for example, man is just another animal among thousands of species of animal on this planet, then in a high-level sense, there’s nothing really different about him vis-à-vis the rest of the “animal kingdom.” The Yellow-bellied Sapsucker does what it does, and you never see protesters complaining about its actions. The wolf will sometimes deplete an area of prey and while some might try to correct or offset that (why?) I never see anyone angry at the wolf or attempting to make it change its desires. But then, there’s man. “Oh,” the do-gooder evolutionist says, “But man is destroying the rain forest and all manner of rare or unknown flora and fauna are perishing because of it!” to which I scratch my head. After all, whatever man does is what man does because of what he is, and there’s no higher “ought to” to say otherwise. Man got here through the same process that the wolf does and has no higher “law” governing him that stands over the wolf, right? I mean, if the wolf just kills and kills, well, maybe man just destroys rain forests until they’re all gone. What’s wrong with that? Don’t evolutionists maintain it was just such a confluence of actions on the part of lower order creatures that gave rise to the present world? Why not let man just be man (rain forests be damned) and see what comes of it? Isn’t that “the process” that evolutionists believe in?

But by bewailing man’s actions and attempting to change them towards some desired “ought to,” aren’t evolutionists trying to apply exactly what they deny is inherent in the universe—design??

So on what basis should men change? If I shun the homeless person and let him die from exposure to the elements, what of it? Isn’t that precisely something man does? Let me continue on in that way;, surely the “process of evolution” will bring about something else. This is the destructive/creative evolutionary process modern science assures us is the regnant principle behind all that is, no?

Another Problem I Have With Liberalism…

Another problem that I have with Liberalism is simply that in order to realize its vision, YOU have to be burdened with doing something. That is, Liberalism stands at your door with some kind of demand or other that YOU do something or its aims won’t be achieved. I think that’s why so many Liberals that I meet are so angry at various groups all the time–those groups aren’t complying with Liberalism’s demands to get onboard with their vision.

That’s not to say other groups don’t have wants of other groups, but here is a crucial difference: Liberalism wants to effect its vision by force of government in most every case. You want homes for the homeless? So does the Conservative, but the Liberal insists we provide housing at the point of a gun. You MUST give more in taxes to effect their utopian vision and if you don’t, that just proves what a heartless, cruel, greedy, corporate-owned wretch you are.

Why the Democrats Oppose Cut, Cap, and Balance

From my comments on a PowerlineBlog.com post:

The Dems can’t go along with this. The main engine of their political power is PUBLIC MONIES. They keep their constituents happy by essentially paying them off through an endless series of entitlements. No money==no entitlements==lost power. They’d rather go down, taking the entire enterprise with them, than go along with this. To do otherwise would be to cede their power and go into minority status forever and I get the feeling they know it.
That’s why I honestly believe that the Democrats (the current crop, anyways) only thrive when the government operates outside of its constitutional obligations. It’s why they oppose strict constructionists on the the SCOTUS. A truly constitutionally limited federal government would more or less spell an end to the Democrat party as it exists today. They have enjoyed success while they’ve been able to (unconstitutionally and immorally) spend other people’s money, dispensing the largesse to their favored constituencies. The fight to kill Cut, Cap, and Balance, therefore, is literally a fight for the existence of the modern Democrat party.

Meditations on the implications of Arminianism

I went on a failed run today (in the rain, no less) and listened to James White in an attempt to fruitfully pass the time. He continued a “Radio Free Geneva” (when I was younger and heard “Radio Free” I always thought it meant “free of radios”—yes, I had issues), critiquing a sermon by an avowed “Wesleyan Arminian.” Riffing off the comments that the Arminian pastor (“Ron”) made, I had a series of thoughts that had never really occurred to me before respecting the implications of Arminianism. (The run was failed, by the way, because I think I injured my achilles and other connective tissue in both ankles previously and the run aggravated them to such an extent I thought it better to stop and walk.)

In particular, Pastor Ron asserted that when it comes to the salvation of any individual, God “does not make that decision all by himself,” meaning, that the individual must choose to believe or salvation will not happen. The way he said the phrase, it was clear that if God did make the decision all by himself that pastor Ron considered that a violation of some basic law of fair play.

Well, for one thing, at that point, God doesn’t really “decide” anything if his “decision” is completely subject to the consent of the person being saved. Exactly what is God “deciding” then? About the most you can say is that in general he decided to offer everyone the potential to be saved. But nothing “decisive” can happen on God’s end because in order to be decisive, it would take a completely unilateral decision from God.

Also, it seems that in order to be utterly, completely consistent (and “fair” by the Arminian standard) if God is not equitably able to make the decision to save a person “all by himself” then by the same reasoning, he shouldn’t be “allowed” to even create a person without that person’s consent. Seriously! I mean, think about it—it all amounts to the same thing: God shouldn’t be able to do anything determinative with a person without that person’s consent if to act unilaterally in decision affecting a person’s life is inherently unfair. And even if I consent, we’re not done yet. I should also have a say over who I am—my physical and psychological makeup. I mean, after all, if those things somehow effect my ability to respond to God’s overtures, so I should be able to decide what I think are the characteristics that I want, right? “Hey, why am I born in Tibet? What are my chances of even HEARING the Gospel there? That’s not FAIR! Birth me in Louisville, KY or on the campus of Liberty University!”

Speaking of that, I suppose the Wesleyan Arminian response is that that doesn’t matter, because God gives to every person a measure of prevenient grace. Ok, but that opens up a whole new can of worms that I’ll mention later.

The bottom line on this train of thought is that once I argue that God cannot be allowed to make the decision “all by himself” for my salvation because it is so deeply personal such that I ought to have a say in it, then NONE of the decisions God makes concerning me should be allowed to be made solely by him since, conceivably they all impact my likelihood or not of receiving the Gospel.

Off topic: Think politicians don’t want control of the Internet? Read this: | Uncommon Descent

I tend to think more like person and less like Hugh Hewitt when it comes to trust in the current political elite.

Off topic: Think politicians don’t want control of the Internet? Read this: | Uncommon Descent