Towards A Good Samaritan World

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

RELIGION DERANGES PEOPLE

Hugh Hewitt has a good post on the left's failure to understand religion, and its compulsion to debate with straw-man versions of religion instead.

I've been thinking about this lately since reading a paper by Paul Krugman and Brad DeLong meant to attack Bush's Social Security plan. The paper was just spectactularly bad, which is strange because Paul Krugman at least was a truly brilliant economist in the past. How could he put his name to something like this? What is it about the Bush administration that he inspires economists to resort to intellectual hara-kiri to express their rage?

Is it, perhaps, I wondered, because the Bush administration is associated with religion? Are Krugman and DeLong two more of those people you sometimes meet who just get deranged with fury when religious challenges to the authority of the secular humanist worldview are permitted and respected? Do Krugman and DeLong get the whiff of religion from Bush, and are filled with such hatred that they gladly throw their rigorous training out the window to oppose him?

Just a thought.

3 Comments:

  • I too have noticed that George Bush and religion (particularly Christianity) tend to evoke irrational behavior on the part of many on the left. It reminds me of an observation made about the war on drugs: "There is something very special about illicit drugs. If they don’t always make the drug user behave irrationally, they certainly cause many non-users to behave that way." (Lester Grinspoon & James B. Bakalar. Marihuana, the Forbidden Medicine. 1997) Perhaps this is what was meant by the claim that religion is the opiate of the people.

    Mention drugs and a large group of otherwise reasonable people suddenly abandon logic, empirical evidence and intellectual honesty in order to save people like Peter McWilliams from the evils of marijuana. Mention George Bush or the Catholic Church and a different group of people react in exactly the same way to save society from the certain penury that awaits those who would invest a small portion of their retirement funds in stocks, bonds and commodities, or the mindless fanaticism that is the inevitable result of acting in accordance with one's professed beliefs that are associated with a religion.

    By Anonymous Strophyx, at 2:09 PM  

  • I'd have to agree. It seems no longer acceptable on either side to accept a moderate view of the opposition. They now *must* be characterized by their most extreme elements. I've been criticized by some of those who lean slightly left for not seeing Bush as monstrous (rather than simply wrong :-)), and I've been told that characterizing slightly left ideas as anything but a gateway to communism and moral destruction was "surrendering the field".

    By Anonymous Tom West, at 4:54 AM  

  • Personally, I have concluded that it is something in the water in large cities. I am now researching the effec of fluoride on the brain.

    I can't account for Krugman any other way.

    By Blogger MaxedOutMama, at 7:10 PM  

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