Thursday, February 24, 2011

Rummy makes the rounds, part the IVth: John Stewart

Once again, Rummy refuses to accept standard CW characterizations...

"Present" not "sell".

"Why do you say "at least" twice?"

Watch, and you'll understand.

In short: Rumsfeld is to Ali as Stewart is to Glass Joe. Rumsfeld is to Foghorn Leghorn as Stewart is to Henery Hawk

More from Plantinga the comedian. Be sure you are not drinking beverages anywhere near electronics..

"But isn't this just endorsing a wholly outmoded and discredited fundamentalism,
that condition than which, according to many academics, none lesser can be
conceived? I fully realize that the dreaded f-word will be trotted out to
stigmatize any model of this kind. Before responding, however, we must first
look into the use of this term 'fundamentalist'. On the most common contemporary
academic use of the term, it is a term of abuse or disapprobation, rather like
'son of a bitch', more exactly 'sonovabitch', or perhaps still more exactly (at
least according to those authorities who look to the Old West as normative on
matters of pronunciation) 'sumbitch.' When the term is used in this way, no
definition, no definition of it is ordinarily given. (If you called someone a
sumbitch, would you fell obligated first to define the term?) Still, there is a
bit more to the meaning of 'fundamentalist' (in this widely current use); it
isn't simply a term of abuse. In addition to its emotive force, it does have
some cognitive content, and ordinarily denotes relatively conservative
theological views. That makes it more like 'stupid sumbitch' (or maybe 'fascist
sumbitch'?) than 'sumbitch' simpliciter. It isn't exactly like that term either,
however, because its cognitive content can expand and contract on demand; its
content seems to depend on who is using it. In the mouths of certain liberal
theologians, for example, it tends to denote any who accept traditional
Christianity, including Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, and Barth; in the
mouths of devout secularists like Richard Dawkins or Daniel Dennett, it tends to
denote anyone who believes there is such a person as God. The explanation that
the term has a certain indexical element: its cognitive content is given by the
phrase 'considerably to the right, theologically speaking, of me and my
enlightened friends.' The full meaning of the term, therefore (in this use), can
be given by something like 'stupid sumbitch whose theological opinions are
considerably to the right of mine'"
(Warranted Christian Belief, pp. 244-245).

Sherrif Buford T. Justice would be proud.

Alvin Plantinga to retire

from the hallowed halls of the Indiana school with the Golden Dome.

It understates things to say of this Wayne State alum, that he is a very influential philosopher, not only in the field of philosophy of religion and Christian thought but in the hoary halls of metaphysics and modal logic. One suspects that every possible world (or at least the tolerably good ones) requires a "Big Al".

By all accounts he's a nice unassuming, warmly humorous man. Here's a taste:

Gotta love this bit from the story:

The program included a hilarious reading of Plantinga's famous "token-reflexive" definition of a "fundamentalist" as "a stupid (expletive deleted) whose theological beliefs are to the right of me and my enlightened friends." Plantinga's legendary resemblance to Abraham Lincoln was duly and wittily noted as well, and a song was written and performed for the occasion: "Hotel Possibilia," to the tune of "Hotel California," full of metaphysical in-jokes and allusions to Plantinga's emphasis on the importance of "possible worlds."

Brilliant. Let's hope YouTube videos are forthcoming.

If the account here is correct he's heading back to Michigan to teach at Calvin College.

Wait a minute...I thought he was retiring.

Are you now or have you ever been associated in any way, directly or tangentially with the Koch brothers?

Seems, ironically enough, that events in Badger country, home of Senator Eugene McCarthy are scaring up a witch hunt of sorts in various corners of the intertubes, vis the eeeeeeeevil and nefarious Koch Brothers.

Now, I've already tagged the U.S. and Israel with the monikers "Big and Little Enos Burdette", so I cannot take it back, and paste the label on these two sinister figures from the shadowy libertarian right, puppet masters behind every single move of every single conservative and/or Republican politician in the country at this time, but boy I wish I could.

As if the Left/Liberal/Democrat politicians do not have 'sugar daddies' galore, equally 'tentacled' menacing puppet masters... As if the unions both private and public are not monied interests with..heh heh. 'vested interests'. Please. Get over your vapors folks. The Kochs are wayyy down on that list at slot number 82, a list well populated with..wait for it...unions.
The Enos brothers (Damn. Can't help that.) have just as much a right to support politicians with which they agree than do your champions of progress. Oh...and Walmart, right? right? Center for American Progress"?

For an amusing deconstruction of the McCarthy-like vapors, and sloppy and misleading use of numbers in the New York times and CAP pieces, read these two posts at the always well informed and biting POWERLINE blog:

as they say down in the Burdette country,