Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Not Going Far Enough
Opinion © 2004, by Guy L. Evans

December 22, 2004

In identifying protesters of the war in Iraq as enemies of the United States, some people said that I had “gone too far”. The protesters, I was told, were simply exercising their right to free speech, and that they were simply harmless fuzzballs.

Harmless fuzzballs. Golly.

You can’t have it both ways. Either they are serious, in which case they are clearly trying to harm the United States, or they are not, in which case they can’t be taken seriously. In other words, either take them at their word and deal with them accordingly, or don’t take them at their word and ignore them. I guarantee you, the new Nazis of the Middle East take the protesters at their word. And this fact makes the protesters dangerous.

It seems to be a simple mental exercise to give away the safety and freedom of other people. So, let’s not. Imagine that you and your next-door neighbor are in a dispute over your property line. He says it’s here; you say it’s over there. You are not enemies. You are having a civil dispute. At what point do you become your neighbor’s enemy?

I think we can agree that you are clearly an enemy of your neighbor when you pick up a weapon and attack him. The question, however, is at what point do you become an enemy? Do you become an enemy when you pick up a weapon? Do you become an enemy when you decide to pick up a weapon? Do you become an enemy when you decide to attack your neighbor before you have decided what method to use? Or do you become an enemy of your neighbor at the moment you decide to do harm to your neighbor before you have even decided what harm you will commit or how you will commit it?

I argue that you become your neighbor’s enemy at the moment that you decide to do harm to your neighbor. Many of the people who protest the war in Iraq have already decided that they will do harm to the United States, they are just searching for a time and a method. The war in Iraq is merely an opportunity for them to continue their attacks. To them, protesting America’s war effort is a method of doing harm to the United States. Therefore, they are enemies of the United States.

In protesting the war while we are actively engaged in the war, they give encouragement to the enemy forces to continue to fight. As in America’s war in Viet Nam, public protests gave the Communists encouragement to hang on instead of negotiating for peace and ending the war. By protesting the war, the anti-war protesters virtually ensure that the war will continue.

If I were going to protest the war in a reasonable and responsible manner, I would write letters to my representatives in Congress and even to the President. I would not openly display my disapproval. Many people do write letters and discretely express their dissent. There is nothing wrong with protesting the war this way. It is the proper way to express your disapproval. It gets results.

Public protests offer encouragement to enemies of the United States to continue to fight. Most of the information I have on the subject confirms that the public protesters agree with the fascist and communist enemies of America. They want America to lose the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. They want Israel to be destroyed. They support Communist China, North Korea, and Communist Viet Nam.

Their actions and statements support my conclusion that these people are not merely protesters, but are in fact trying as hard as they can to harm the United States. In their own minds, they are enemies of the United States. Who am I to disagree with them?

In calling these people enemies of the United States, I think I am not going far enough. It’s time for the American people to stop treating these creatures as harmless peace-love-and-rock-and-roll hippies. They are not. The hippies grew up (most of them, anyway) and moved to the suburbs. They drive SUV’s and drink latte. The clowns who demonstrate in public, who offer encouragement to the new Nazis of the Middle East, are an actual danger to America’s “war on terror”. They are a threat to our freedom.

Encouraging America’s enemies to defeat America is not protected speech. There is nothing sacrosanct about public protests. Public demonstrations that promote or encourage violence against individual citizens are already outlawed. Public demonstrations that promote or encourage violence against the United States must also be outlawed.

If you think I’ve gone too far, it must be nice to live in your comfortable little world.

Guy L. Evans
Aurora, Colorado

Monday, December 20, 2004

How to Be a Loser
Lessons in losing © 2004, by Guy L. Evans

December 20, 2004

I have spent years observing chronic losers at close range. They are an interesting bunch--interesting in the sense that a fifty-car pile up is interesting. Chronic losers have certain characteristics in common. They do certain things that ensure that they will lose no matter what assistance is offered them.

1. Quit
It may be argued that quitting does not constitute losing. People who don’t participate don’t lose. They don’t win, either. In surrendering the field, chronic losers may not feel that they are losing. This is self-deception. Quitting during the conflict, or not participating at all, ensures that chronic losers cannot win. Winners persist. Losers quit.

2. Complain
Chronic losers are complainers, and complainers are chronic losers. Chronic losers use emotional dumping to make sure everyone knows how unhappy they are. They want as many people as possible are share their personal misery. Chronic losers often fuel their anger into boiling rage. They complain bitterly that they have been wronged, that the situation is unjust, and that they are entitled to some consolation. That’s “consolation”, not “compensation”.

3. Blame
In order to make complaining believable, chronic losers have to have someone or something to blame. There must be some evil force that has dedicated itself to making chronic losers chronically unhappy. Identifying who or what to blame means that chronic losers possess insight.

4. Appease
Similar to quitting is appeasing. Chronic losers often believe that assuming a subordinate posture during a conflict will save them some grief. They hope that their opponent will be chivalrous and take pity on them. What usually happens is that their opponent takes advantage of their weakness and beats them like a bongo. Assuming a position of weakness tends to ensure losing.

5. Excuse
Chronic losers are masters of making excuses for their failures. They excuse their failures by telling themselves that they followed all the rules and did all the things they were expected to do. It’s not their fault, they tell themselves, someone else cheated. Excusing themselves permits chronic losers to hand off responsibility for their own behavior to someone else, and to avoid the unpleasant business of having to learn new things.

6. Console
Sorrow is a normal part of losing. Chronic losers feel a lot of sorrow. Consoling themselves with indulgences helps ease the sorrow of losing. Imagining themselves to be wounded heroes also helps. Chronic losers seem to prefer consolation to compensation.

7. Sabotage
Chronic losers tend to be self-sabotaging. They lose their focus. They are given to emotional agitation. They have difficulty establishing an objective and then achieving it. They withhold the effort necessary to win. Attempting to win requires taking risks. Chronic losers seem to be more willing to cripple themselves than to take the risks necessary to win.

8. Envision
Chronic losers seem to habitually envision losing. They think that if one side wins, the other side must necessarily lose. They feel that if other people succeed, then they themselves have lost something. They take no consolation in other people’s successes. They feel deep resentment. Chronic losers think that it is only fair for winners to lose, also.

9. Evade
Chronic losers tend to evade taking responsibility for their own behavior. As mentioned above, chronic losers cannot afford to take responsibility for their own lives. The perception that they are good people who are victims of circumstances beyond their control is vital to their ability to excuse themselves of responsibility for their own condition. Chronic losers don’t have time to be responsible for their own behavior; they are too busy taking responsibility for things they cannot control, like world peace, for example.

The cost of winning appears to be too great for chronic losers. They seem to be very uncomfortable with the idea that someone might actually win. They seem to be incapable of thinking that both parties in a relationship can benefit. Chronic losers believe that one party in a relationship is always cheating or “taking advantage of” the other party.

Chronic losers are afraid of feeling vulnerable. Conflict makes them feel vulnerable. Evading, blaming, complaining, and so forth help chronic losers feel less vulnerable. These methods help chronic losers distract themselves from the reality of their situations.

Chronic losers are afraid of losing their indulgences. They seem to prefer consolation to compensation. It may be that winning threatens to bring too many changes in their lives, and chronic losers are afraid of change. Chronic losers seem to have trouble letting go of the past. The past is wonderful; the future is scary.

I hope this helps. It’s the best advice I can give on how to be a loser. Deciding to be a loser is a hard decision. There’s no point in being a loser if you don’t intend to be the best loser you can possibly be. Good luck.

Guy L. Evans
Aurora, Colorado

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Another Jesus Hater Demonstrates His Ignorance
Opinion © 2004, by Guy L. Evans

December 15, 2004

Hugh Hewitt was in a tizzy yesterday about an article published in this week’s Newsweek. On December 14, Hugh wrote:

What does Newsweek's story on Christmas tell us about MSM?

So, to participate it this symposium, read the Meacham piece and the Mohler-Roberts responses. Then write on the subject of what these articles tell us about the MSM's abilities and credibility on matters of faith and history, specifically, is the Newsweek article the religion reporting equivalent of Rathergate? What accounts for the appearance in a major news magazine of such a biased piece?
*Yawn* Sorry, Hugh. I have a life.

The short answer is that it’s just more the Jesus-hating, self-important snobs demonstrating their ignorance for all the world to see.

Hugh has gone nuclear over this matter. He stopped everything to respond to this one article in Newsweek. It seems odd to me. Something is going on here. Meacham got under his skin.

Hugh marshaled his allies to join his cause, and join they have. The intensity of the discussion during Hugh’s show yesterday was profound. Hugh was upset. His callers were upset. His guests were upset. Upset doesn’t mean out of control. But once again, the rational Christians were scurrying to respond to the inflammatory propaganda of a leftist blatherer. Once again, a verbal bomb thrower on the left managed, for better or for worse, to stir up the hornet’s nest of opposition.

This latest incident is similar to the deliberate provocations that Michael Moore hurled against President Bush earlier this year. There is no real content to Moore’s innuendoes, and there doesn’t seem to be any content to Meacham’s piece in Newsweek either. Like all propagandists, Jon Meacham interjects his own prejudices as facts. Referring to Jesus Christ and to the Christian religion, he writes:

A man with no human father, a king who died a criminal’s death, a God who assures us of everlasting life in a world to come while the world he made is consumed by war and strife: Christianity is a religion of perplexing contradictions.
Our world is “consumed by war and strife”? What?! Meacham makes it sound like God really has his head up his...

This is just Meacham’s opinion; however, he states his opinion as though it is fact. This is editorializing. For those who are not familiar with Christianity, Meacham’s editorializing here is a direct slap at all Christian faith. Leftists view religious faith as superstition and consider themselves clever and enlightened for being able to construe Christianity with sarcasm, denigrating the message of hope, love, and optimism into ridiculous prattle.

This is the type of silliness that drives adults to distraction when they try to talk to their teen-aged children. Meacham’s editorial-as-news piece is clearly the chattering of a person who knows too little about Christianity. His ignorance is obvious. Hugh has fallen into the trap again because it is impossible to win an argument with an ignorant person. (For example, it is impossible to win an argument about the error of applying the rules of a posteriori logic to a priori logic with someone who knows nothing about logic.)

By becoming upset about this article, Hugh Hewitt, his listeners, and his guests have given Jon Meacham’s ignorance of the subject undeserved standing. Hugh has already made the point that Meacham is utterly discredited, and perhaps he should leave it at that.

Meacham has substituted opinionated ignorance for knowledge, in other words, propaganda. Successful propaganda infects its audience with the desired emotional state. It is clear the Jon Meacham is critical of and hostile toward Christianity, and his audience--including Hugh Hewitt--has responded with criticism and hostility toward him.

Instead of answering Meacham with facts, Hugh should ask him why he is critical of and hostile toward Christianity. Just lay your cards on the table.

People who wish to defend their faith must address the fears that people may hold. Jon Meacham and Newsweek are trying to arouse people to fear Christianity and Christians. Hugh Hewitt, like George W. Bush, must make the case that their faith does not make them fearsome; instead, it makes them trustworthy.

Anti-Christian propaganda seeks to take understandable fears and assign them to their target. The term “perplexing contradictions” is designed to transfer people’s fears of perplexing and contradictory situations to Christianity in general. It also ignores--as propaganda does--the facts. For example, it ignores the fact that Christianity is also a religion of steadfast assertions such as the divinity of Christ and the Resurrection.

Is there a concise method for dealing with propagandists like Michael Moore and Jon Meacham? I think so. David Horowitz gives us the answer. Leftist propagandists are always on the attack. Their purpose is to engender distrust and contempt toward their targets, and trust and admiration toward themselves and their cause. When they attack, turn the questions back on them. Ask, “Why would you say a thing like that? What did you have in mind? What exactly did you mean by that?” Make them explain themselves.

Don’t spend too much time on your own defense. Your friends don’t need it, and your enemies won’t accept it. Instead, make your attacker explain why he attacked you. Make him show his prejudices to the world.

Guy L. Evans
Aurora, Colorado

Currency, Clocks, and Calendars
Opinion © 2004, by Guy L. Evans

December 14, 2004

Modern civilization cannot function without currency, clocks, and calendars. Currency gives us a measurement for cost, clocks give us a measurement for time of day, and calendars give us a measurement for weeks, months, and years. The key term is “measurement”.

However, the measurements of cost and time cannot accurately measure actual conditions, namely, value and state. Currency cannot measure relative value and clocks and calendars can only measure finite changes in state.

A bag of prepared salad will cost me $2.99. Every bag of prepared salad I choose to buy will cost me $2.99. However, the value of every bag of prepared salad is not the same. The first bag may have a relative value of $2.99, but the second and third bags may not. If I only want one bad of prepared salad, then all the subsequent bags of prepared salad have no value to me regardless of their cost. The value of the bag of prepared salad to me is determined by what I can do with it. If I have one bag of prepared salad, I can dispose of it by eating it. If I have fifty bags of prepared salad, I will probably have to dispose of most of them by throwing them away. They have no value to me.

A clock can give me a measure of the time it takes to change from one state to another, state being my condition or location. It may take me an hour to go from my house to work. That is a measure of the time it takes me to change from my location at home to my location at work. This is useful to me because it gives me information necessary to plan my activities and become optimally efficient. The time spent is determined by the rate of change. Rate of change is measured in time.

Calendars that measure linear time are necessary for planning events into the future, and useful for talking about events in the past. We can coordinate an event several years away, and as long as we all use the same calendar.

Currency, clocks, and calendars are all tools for measuring things. Difficulties arise, however, when people confuse measurements with actual events.

The physical fallacy in economics occurs when people confuse cost with value. In confusing cost with value, they conclude that profits are immoral, unethical, or unfair. In fact, in most economic exchanges, the buyer realizes greater benefit than the seller does. The seller realizes measurable profit while the buyer realizes immeasurable profit. Since the buyer’s profits cannot be measured in currency, people suppose that only the seller made a profit. From this misunderstanding, people have invented price controls, socialism, and communism, all of which are demonstrable failures.

Clocks do not tell time; people tell time. Clocks are simply machines that perform repetitive motions at accurate, recognizable intervals. Unlike Sundials, clocks permit people to synchronize their activities over vast distances. Clocks are strictly mechanical; they are machines. They are tools. They do exactly and only what they are designed to do. We use them to indicate when we will start or stop certain activities, or to measure the duration of an event.

Calendars permit people to synchronize activities over long periods of time. Calendars, however, pose a peculiar problem. Calendars measure time as both circular and linear. Circular time is easy to measure. Clocks measure circular time. When the period of measurement ends--seconds, minutes, and hours--a new one begins. Calendars measure months and years this way with one notable difference. Calendars increment the number of years. This gives the impression that time--past, present, and future combined--is infinite. This impression leads to speculation about the beginning and ending of time. This is ghastly.

The term “infinite time” is an oxymoron. It is impossible to make sense of it. Time is a measure of change of state. The state has a beginning and an end; the measurement of changes also has a beginning and an end. As a measurement, time is as finite as the changes we are measuring.

The problem that the calendar creates is the idea that time can be measured in years to infinity in either the past or the future. Measuring time to infinity is incomprehensible and a little distressing. To cope with the distress, people speculate on ideas like “the Big Bang”, the Apocalypse, and other ideas that try to bring the incomprehensible idea of infinite time under control.

The idea of time has no meaning when it is not a measurement of something. There is nothing that can be measured by infinite time. Anything that has no beginning and no ending cannot be measured.

The idea of linear time also gives rise to the idea of historicism, which says that what was true to people in one epoch is not necessarily true to people in a different epoch, and that progress is inevitable. Historicism rests on one obvious lie, namely, that all truth is malleable except historicism itself. According to historicism, historicism itself is a notion of a particular epoch and will not be true for people who live in other epochs, past or future. Communism and Nazism are both historicist doctrines.

The problem for people who believe that time is linear and the progress is inevitable is that some things are unaffected by time. Mathematics is an obvious example. The equation “2 + 2 = 4” is true regardless of any measure of time. It simply does not change.

Likewise with progress. The idea of progress is a matter of value. For example, some people consider the openness of homosexuality in modern society to be progress; others consider it regression to barbarity. The event is observable. How people understand the event depends on what they value.

Change is not necessarily progress. When a patient’s condition changes from poor to critical, that certainly is not progress. Progress is not inevitable. It takes considerable planning and effort to achieve. The Western Roman Empire took about one thousand years to build, and one year to tear apart. Nearly two thousand years of Chinese Imperial rule was ended in a single day.

Currency, clocks, and calendars are the necessary tools we use to measure our achievements. Those achievements must be maintained with great diligence. The cost of continuing any civilization is unending vigilance.

Guy L. Evans
Aurora, Colorado

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

The Rise and Fall of Capitalism
Opinion © 2004, by Guy L. Evans

December 8, 2004

Ever found a particular product that you really liked only to have it taken off the market, and there are no reasonable substitutes? Or had a product line changed so that you really don’t like it any more? That’s pretty aggravating, isn’t it? Why does this happen?

Recently, here in the Denver metro area, all but one of the Marie Callender’s restaurants were closed without notice. As it turns out, Marie Callender’s operations were bought out by ConAgra, a multi-national corporate monstrosity. Why did ConAgra close restaurants even when there was clearly a demand for the product? One word: Investors.

In order to understand why a corporation would deliberately deprive consumers of a product that is clearly in demand, you have to understand the interests of investors. Investors risk their capital by effectively loaning money to private enterprises with the intent of realizing profits from their investments. By investing, investors have an ownership interest in the corporation with little or no responsibilities of ownership. Their commitment to the company is minimal and fickle. They can get in and get out whenever they like.

In a small business, the owners have closer contact with consumers, and are often directly responsible to consumers. Owners also have a greater commitment to the business. This relationship is the most successful because owners know what consumers want and can adjust their production systems to meet changing demand.

In the corporate system, investor owners have little or no contact with consumers, and therefore are unable to make adjustments to meet consumer demand. In many cases, such as the ConAgra case, investors simply disregard consumer demands.

Investors place their capital with businesses that display the greatest potential. The key word is “display”. The display may be real, or it may be a deception. Investors can be deceived. Knowing that investors can be deceived, companies seeking investments turn their attention to deceptive practices and away from meeting the demands of consumers.

In the investment system, consumers’ interests are often subordinated to investors’ interests. In order to attract more investment, corporations drop less profitable operations regardless of consumer demand. The operations may be perfectly profitable in their own right but may not meet unrealistic expectations for return on investment. Keep in mind that investors are looking for return on their investment, not for consumer satisfaction.

It should be understood that investors really don’t give a rusty dam what individual consumers want. Investors are absorbed in their own interests, and out of touch and unconcerned with anyone else’s interests. For investors, it is a perfect system. They can inflict untold misery on other people and still remain oblivious to the harm they do. The real lives of real people are construed as numbers and symbols, the actual humanity being refined out of the data.

The problem for the entire system is that investors may acquire unrealistic expectations about the real world, and make their investment choices based on bizarre notions instead of verified facts. People make decisions based on knowledge, but they make purchases based on emotion. Investors’ feelings matter more than their knowledge; therefore, their actual purchases tend to be unrealistic.

In the investment system, operations that display the potential for the greatest return on investment tend to push out other perfectly good operations. You end up with a dictatorship of the consuming majority in goods and services, a dictatorship of pedestrian, mediocre consumer tastes. This is the case in all consumable goods and services including entertainment. If you flip through all five-hundred channels on your cable or dish only to give up because “there’s nothing on”, it’s because the interests of investors take precedence over your tastes as a consumer of television entertainment.

In the investment driven system, no one asks you what you want. The reason is that what you want doesn’t matter. What matters is the portfolios of investors. You are give a selection to choose from, but you are never allowed to add to or take away from that selection. The menu is the menu; take it or leave it.

If your tastes conform to the majority, then you will have more choices than you can use. If your tastes vary from the majority, you run the risk of being left with no choices.

The investment system distorts the relationship between suppliers and demanders because the suppliers stop listening the demanders and start listening to the investors. When consumers have direct input into the system of supply and demand, capitalism thrives and out-produces all other systems. When the consumer has little or no input into the system of supply and demand, then capitalism degenerates into socialism. If consumers cannot make themselves heard through direct contact with producers, then they will make themselves heard by electing socialist, intrusive, bullying governments.

In the early industrial age, owners stripped their companies of capital in order to build splendid estates for themselves. Their companies were unable to adapt to changing consumer demands, and they eventually failed. The investor system runs the risk of ending up the same way. Monstrosities like ConAgra will have difficulty meeting consumer demand because the people in the corporations who make the decisions that affect consumers have little or no contact with consumers. They don’t know what consumers want, and they don’t seem particularly interested, either. They decide what to offer. You can either take it or leave it.

If you have any ideas that writing letters of protest will make a difference, here is a word of caution. I have been through this exercise a few times myself. The response in every case has been a barely polite, “*bleep* you. You aren’t going to get what you want here, so stop bothering us.”

When consumers’ interests are ignored, capitalism isn’t capitalism.

Guy L. Evans
Aurora, Colorado

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Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Grief and Anger
Opinion © 2004, by Guy L. Evans

December 7, 2004

I am currently reading If You Had Controlling Parents* by Dr. Dan Neuharth. In his chapter on why parents over-control, he makes this observation:

When children become emotionally stuck, immense grief and anger get locked up inside them. Some controlling parents never move past that stage of dramatic, childlike feelings, never learning how to have perspective on their emotions. They only know how to act out their feelings as a young child would.
Children become emotionally stuck because of unresolved childhood trauma. It is reasonable to include children who have suffered unresolved trauma with controlling parents because most controlling parents are children who have suffered unresolved childhood trauma. Such people also feel a pervasive anxiety that the cause of the trauma will return or has never really gone away, a pervasive sense of being threatened.

Dr. Neuharth is saying that people who have suffered unresolved childhood trauma have to cope with immense grief and anger, and that they can get emotionally stuck in childhood. Grief and anger are powerful emotions. They can overwhelm all other feelings, such as feelings of safety and contentment. They can interfere with a person’s ability to learn, including intellectual education.

Emotional interference with learning due to immense grief and anger is a significant cause of learning problems in children and adults. Some people resist learning new things because new things are threatening to them. They have difficulty accepting change, and learning new things is change. They are not incapable of learning; they are afraid of learning.

Such children can be stubborn, distant, self-isolating, apparently apathetic or lazy, and given to destructive emotional outbursts. They prefer acting out their emotions instead of talking about them. They feel threatened, and take extraordinary measures to avoid feeling vulnerable.

According to Dr. Neuharth, they perpetually replay the traumatic events, making it difficult for them to have contact with their current, immediate circumstances. They tend to have rich fantasy lives, and they tend to project their anxieties onto other people and unrelated situations. This also hinders learning. They have difficulty understanding the hurt they inflict on others. This gives the impression that they are totally self-absorbed.

Dr. Neuharth points out that children who have suffered unresolved childhood trauma tend to become over-controlling parents. They tend to be over-controlling in general. They do to other people what they themselves fear most. They fear being dominated, so they try to dominate first. They fear being vulnerable, so they put other people on the defensive. They fear rejection, so they reject other people first. They fear being yelled at, so they yell at other people.

The bottled up, pervasive grief and anger that children who have suffered unresolved childhood trauma feel, along with their tendency to express their feelings in a dramatic and childlike manner, make such people volatile, stubborn, and draining. They are not fully in touch with their surroundings. They are playing out the trauma that they have not resolved.

Another term for children who have suffered unresolved childhood trauma is “narcissists”.

Dr. Neuharth’s book is very good for people who understand that they have a problem and that they want to change. For people who are afraid of change, afraid of learning anything new, even if it will help them, I’m not sure what can be done for them.

Pervasive grief and anger are symptoms of unresolved childhood trauma. If you have such feelings, please seek help. If you know someone who is this way, please encourage them to seek help. No on has to live that way.

Guy L. Evans
Aurora, Colorado

* If You Had Controlling Parents: How to Make Peace with Your Past and Take Your Place in the World, © 1998, by Quill (HarperCollins), available at Amazon.com for $14.00 or less.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

The Real Baby Killers
Opinion © 2004, by Guy L. Evans

December 1, 2004

Hugh Hewitt wonders why the blogosphere is silent on the issue of the practice of a Dutch hospital illegally killing babies.

Hugh writes:

This news from Holland is deeply horrifying, and the blogosphere is generally silent, which means, what, indifferent? Or embarrassed? Some of my favorite bloggers have said nothing. Nothing? Perhaps they are unaware of the story. But for all the reasons that Drs. David Allen White and Mark D. Roberts detailed today, indifference or indecision is not really an option. The advocacy of the establishment of committees charged with dealing out death --and the admission that such decisions have already been taken in the West-- is not an event about which one can really be neutral.
After reading the article, I have to admit I am sickened and frightened. The Dutch hospital says one thing, but means something entirely different. They couch the truth of killing people in the language of mercy. They wish to convince the audience that killing a person is an act of mercy.

Under what circumstances is killing a person an act of mercy? Under what circumstances does depriving a person of life actually benefit that person?

The “mercy killing” that the Dutch hospital engages in amounts to blaming the victim. You are suffering. We cannot help you. To end your suffering, we will kill you. We will kill you even though you have no means of protesting our decision.

The most terrifying aspect of this entire matter is that there are no consequences to the government, the “committee”, the parents, or the doctors for getting it wrong. There are no consequences for wrongfully depriving a person of his life. There would be no consequences to anyone if the parents decided to kill their newborn with the cooperation of a dishonest doctor who wrongly diagnosed the baby with an incurable, fatal illness.

Killing the babies is bad enough. Consider the elderly and the mentally retarded. Who will advocate for them? Who will advocate for you when you are crippled and unable to advocate for yourself, and you still want to live?

But, hey, why all the ruckus? What is Hugh Hewitt so upset about? After all, the Moslem terrorists who hack off the heads of their prisoners take the same position as the Dutch doctors: Killing is a merciful end to suffering.

Once the idea has gotten into people’s heads that killing is a merciful end to suffering, then dropping the atomic bomb on Hiroshima must be seen as an act of incalculable goodness. The absurdity is overwhelming.

It is critical to the survival of civilization that any act that deprives a person of his life without due process of law and not for the punishment of a crime must be treated as an offense against society, even if society thinks they somehow benefit from this practice. It is an improper and unacceptable use of force against the victim and therefore against society.

It is a bizarre twist that the anti-death penalty advocates agree with the Dutch doctors. No one should be killed as punishment for a crime; however, a person who is not able to advocate for himself whether he wishes to live or die should be killed to satisfy the needs of others, such as the parents.

For my two-cents worth, the babies who were killed by the Dutch doctors received no benefit. Nothing was done for them that could be seen as being in their interest. The beneficiaries of the killings were the parents, the doctors, and the hospital, presuming that they were paid for their “services”. The reasons for which any person may be justifiably killed must be severely restricted by law, otherwise, human life will have no value.

Paying people to kill other people, providing financial incentives to end the lives of people who cannot protest, is truly dangerous, as the number and profitability of abortion clinics should attest. The matter of incentives is purely practical. It should be. The doctors who killed the babies in Holland have already demonstrated that no moral incentives will stop them.

Guy L. Evans
Aurora, Colorado

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