March 28th 2015

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Articles from this issue:

EDITORIAL Tony Abbott's last chance

CANBERRA OBSERVED Coalition government switches to survival mode

ECONOMIC AFFAIRS If Abbott can back Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank...

HUMAN RIGHTS Re-establishing the right to freedom of religion and conscience

NATIONAL AFFAIRS Intergenerational Report: a waste of time and money

ECONOMIC AFFAIRS Two problems the PM must tackle boldly

QUEENSLAND After Cyclone Marcia: balancing drought relief and flood mitigation

AUSTRALIA Builders of a nation: Henry Bolte and Charles Court

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS Putin admits military takeover of Crimea in 2014

CULTURE AND CIVILISATION The rediscovery of Christopher Dawson

CULTURE AND CIVILISATION Acknowledging the debt we owe Alfred the Great

SOCIETY The left's all-out war on truth


OBITUARY Fantasy author Terry Pratchett: an appreciation

BOOK REVIEW The very best of enemies

BOOK REVIEW Dutch warning on where euthanasia leads

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The left's all-out war on truth

by Eric Jackson

News Weekly, March 28, 2015

With the Supreme Court of the United States poised to sanction the incoherence known as gay “marriage”, the left has begun to wage what Steve Sailer calls World War T (Taki’s Magazine, January 22, 2014).

In light of that development, here is a cogent take on the latest absurdity, from philosopher Carlos D. Flores.

He writes: “Our mental faculties, like our physical ones, are ordered toward various ends. Among these ends is the attainment of truth. To this extent, it is perfective of our mental faculties to recognise how we truly are (and thus apprehend a truth).

“It is for this reason that we can make sense of mental disorders such as anorexia nervosa as disorders: they involve persons’ having persistent, false beliefs about their identity or how they really are. In the case of the anorexic, someone who is dangerously underweight believes falsely (but tenaciously) that he is really overweight.

“It would be a proper procedure of medicine, then, for a therapist to help an anorexic individual to do away with his anorexia, restoring the individual’s mental faculties to their properly functioning state” (The Public Discourse, Witherspoon Institute, February 6, 2015).

Well put. The entire premise of mental illness presupposes an objective good that exists outside of the patient’s subjective frame of reference.

If my uncle insists that he is King Henry VIII, that does not make him so. Nor would we be doing him any favours if we went along with the conceit. If he is otherwise a well-functioning member of society, we may not press the point too hard; but that would not mean we had granted the argument.

The analogy with anorexia is a helpful one because those who fight against us in World War T positively loathe the Henry VIII argument. To sane individuals, they are seen as analogous, but they only get so far as the comparison with one who is mentally ill before erupting into a paroxysm of rage.

No wonder they have such trouble thinking clearly. All those emotions are always getting in the way.

Carlos D. Flores continues: “But what are we to make of this ‘gender reassignment’ surgery? Insofar as such a surgical procedure involves the intentional damaging and mutilating of otherwise perfectly functioning bodily faculties by twisting them to an end toward which they are not ordered, such a thing cannot, in principle, possibly be considered a medical procedure.

“And because love compels us to seek the good for another, it is thus a grave evil to condone such surgical procedures.”

This is also well articulated, and dovetails nicely with what I have posted on this subject previously. As Chesterton once put it, “There are some desires that are not desirable.”

Read the rest of Public Discourse piece. It’s all quite good.

Anyway, this war for the transgendered is only going to accelerate. If these coherent arguments aren’t liable to be taken seriously in our degenerate times, it nonetheless profits us to be familiar with them, both for our own edification, and on the off-chance we meet someone who has yet to be taken in by what passes for the left’s system of thought.

Eric Jackson is a software developer and writer, who lives with his wife in St Paul, Minnesota. His personal web log it at:

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