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Which is the true face of Islam?

Recently, two self-proclaimed Muslims have been the subject of discussion around here at Wizbang. And the contrast between the two could not be more remarkable.

Earlier this week, I mentioned Samiyah Diaz, a Muslim law student from Massachusetts who is challenging a firmly-entrenched State Senator for her seat. Ms. Diaz is running as a Republican, of all things, and has a platform of personal responsibility and fiscal accountability.

The other is a commenter who uses the moniker "Muslim Unity." He's been kicking in his two Rupees or Rials (he's either Indian or Iranian; I'm not certain which) and runs his own blog.

Ms. Diaz is an accomplished woman. She speaks seven languages (six more than me, just for the record). She earned both a Bachelor's and a Master's from Tufts. And she did all this while also raising a child by herself.

"MU" (as I call him for short) doesn't publish his biography -- but to be fair, he isn't seeking public office. He often speaks of peace and acceptance and tolerance and love. These are usually interspersed with such trifling diversions as calling for the brutal execution of George W. Bush, praising the death bounties offered for Danish cartoonists, threatening to blow up our cell phone system, threatening to kill those he considers "racists," and pronouncing that all of the Middle East is Muslim holy land, and to hell with any other faiths' prior claims to the land.

And let's not forget that we should not fear Iran, which is truly a peaceful nation. And if we don't accept them and embrace them as peaceful, they'll kill us all.

MU isn't really fond of Ms. Diaz. He pronounces that she is should not be considered a "real Muslim." But other Muslims have a different opinion of her -- she was elected President of the Muslim Law Students Association, and is a member of the Association of Muslim Professionals.

On the other hand, MU sounds an awful lot like your typical Muslim. He says the sorts of things that we have become accustomed to hearing from Muslims -- angry, prideful, threatening, seasoned with the occasional empty words of "peace" and "tolerance."

I sincerely hope that Ms. Diaz is the future of Islam. I fear that MU and his ilk -- who do an admirable job of representing Islam's past and present -- will win out.


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Comments (52)

I always enjoy your essays,... (Below threshold)
lunacy:

I always enjoy your essays, JT.

But you graze on something here that has been bothering me lately, only because I'm afraid we'll never know the answer.

You say MU sounds like a "typical Muslim". But really, most of us get our view of Muslim from the news. And yet most of us don't trust the MSM. We know them to be the proverbial shit stirrers, exaggerators, and bald faced liars that they are.

Somedays I see Muslims freaking out about something, displaying horrific acts of violence and say to myself, "typical Muslims".

Another day I see a picture in the news where the camera crowds people into the frame to look as though their are mobs of people when I know that were only the 2 handfuls crowded into the frame.

Could the MSM be doing that to "typical Muslims"?
Just the other day the MSM was talking about protests in India on the skirts of Bush's visit. 1000 protested. Out of how many Indians?

Just saying, I wish I could be sure whether MU is "typical" or not. It would be easier to rationalize our dilemma with Islamists if everything were so black and white.

I'm just not sure the easy categorizing is the most effective mindset.

L

All Muslim faces are the tr... (Below threshold)
Nylda:

All Muslim faces are the true face. From Winston Churchill's assessment to Cat Stevens conversion, we have the worst and best interpretations of a belief system. Ms. Diaz to Mr. MU, seem to represent the poles of a polarizing and unencouraging spectrum.

Yeah, Muslim Unity got pret... (Below threshold)

Yeah, Muslim Unity got pretty angry with me when I said that his prophet should not have slept with a child. I feel pretty bad about that, but I just can't change my feelings about child molesters. I just don't like them.

heh- I don't know which is ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

heh- I don't know which is the real face of Islam, but I do know if MU is pinning his hopes for military dominanace on Iran, he's about a dumb as a brick.

"MU isn't really fond of... (Below threshold)
lakestate:

"MU isn't really fond of Ms. Diaz. He pronounces that she is should not be considered a "real Muslim." But other Muslims have a different opinion of her -- she was elected President of the Muslim Law Students Association, and is a member of the Association of Muslim Professionals."

This looks and sounds exactly like the African American and liberal bias towards conservative blacks. To the left, if they're conservative they're "Uncle Toms," "House Slaves" or worse. But if they're leftist radicals - they're "Main Stream." Typical double-standard once again.

While it's fun to trash tur... (Below threshold)
Jack Burton:

While it's fun to trash turds like MU, I do have a serious message for him and his posse. Just because our leaders and media are pussies when it comes to addressing your menace, don't think the average American will be nearly as accomodating. The day after you and those like you try to impose your barbaric beliefs on me and my kind will be the day you wake up on the wrong side of the grass. And judging by your beliefs and actions, there won't be 72 virgins waiting for you, only the fires of hell.

Americans can be funny people, we'll let you push us around for a while but once we push back, you'll regret the day you decided your gutter religion was going to dominate our society.

If muslims want to come here,obey our laws (all of them), live in our society as we define it and live in peace, that's fine. If you come for some other purpose, ultimately you're going to get the chance to find there really are no virgins for terrorists.

Ahmen Jack! Ahmen!... (Below threshold)
Bob Jones:

Ahmen Jack! Ahmen!

I wonder how "typical" a Mu... (Below threshold)

I wonder how "typical" a Muslim MU actually is. Are there Muslims who really abhor and are disgusted by terrorism but won't speak out because they're afraid of the crazies, or is the reason they don't speak out because even though they don't condone the actual acts of terrorism, many (most?) Muslims are in broad agreement with the terrorists' broader goals, i.e. worldwide sharia law, America dhimmified and Israel destroyed?

Hmmm.I'm sorry to ... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

I'm sorry to say that I think MU is representative of the vast majority of muslims.

This doesn't mean that there aren't exceptional muslims out there. BigPharaoh and the Iraqi bloggers are a prime example of this. But there's a level of casual violence that permeates Islam that is extremely self-destructive in this day and age.

The problem, repeating myself here, is that the Islamic world didn't really participate in WWII. They see this stuff in movies, but they don't really think about or understand the kind of will it takes to put 1,000 bombers into the air above Berlin and bomb it every single night for years. They don't consider what the ramifications are of a Total War imposed on them.

This is one of the reasons why muslims almost universally deride the Holocaust. Not just because of what happened to the jews. But because they simply do NOT believe that Total War actually exists. If we had actually gone through with "Shock & Awe" then they might have believed, but probably not.

There is a certain idiotic tendency in the Islamic world to believe that the kid gloves with which they've been treated will continue forever. That they can take any action without any serious reaction by the West. And the continued PC effort to gently treat their affronted sensibilities only makes this worse.

Because when that red red line gets crossed, it's death by the boatload.

It's like training a puppy. If you don't show the puppy what behaviors are wrong and let it get out of hand. Sooner or later you're going to put the dog down.

Same thing. And I don't think that being gentle with the Islamic world is the right thing. I think the President of the United States of America needs to go on international television and tell Iran to end the bomb making efforts or they're going to end up a radioactive glow. That any attack by terrorists that involves a WMD, regardless of who is responsible, will result in every single town or city in Iran being utterly destroyed.

This *might* awake the Islamic world to it's incipient peril. But probably not. They've lulled themselves into a sense of complacency that they are immune to retribution. That is very very wrong and it'll come as a deadly shock when it is proven false.

The only question then is the body count.

That's a good point Ed, but... (Below threshold)
Jack Burton:

That's a good point Ed, but I think we're to blame for much of it. Some asshole muslim calls for us to shut down a newspaper for publishing a cartoon, instead of falling all over ourselves apologizing we should say this country is founded on freedom of speech and if you don't like it perhaps you should move on. If CAIR doesn't like some radio personality says and tries to get them fired the parent station should once gain let them know this country is founded on free speech and if you don't like it you should move on. And if muslims don't like the comparisons to muslim and terrorists, they should take a long hard look at themselves and why every one of the major terrorist attacks on this country in the last ten years has beeen carried out by muslims.

Instead of drawing a line in the sand and letting them know that one religion isn't going to change the way we've lived for nearly 250 years we fall all over ourselves trying to appease these idiots, which only strengthens their resolve. In a religion based on violence, any sign of weakness by the US is perceived as a green light for them to push harder. It's time to push back.

There is a certain idiot... (Below threshold)
JohnAnnArbor:

There is a certain idiotic tendency in the Islamic world to believe that the kid gloves with which they've been treated will continue forever. That they can take any action without any serious reaction by the West. And the continued PC effort to gently treat their affronted sensibilities only makes this worse.

Reminds me of this edition of The Dilbert Newsletter, where Scott Adams said (in June '03):
For the Induhviduals, it must look as if Americans are really dumb to have the most awesome arsenal in the history of the world and still be unable to stop terror attacks. They don't realize that the way Americans look at it is that, so far, we're "really mad," but not yet "REALLY, REALLY mad." Oh, there's a difference. Americans understand that somewhere between "inconvenient air travel" and "complete breakdown of Western civilization," the "REALLY, REALLY mad" part kicks in. I won't give away what happens then, but remember you first heard the phrase "New Iowa" in the Dilbert Newsletter.

We haven't hit REALLY, REALLY mad yet, but if we do, no PC police will save those responsible for it.

Forgot the <a href="http://... (Below threshold)
JohnAnnArbor:
Saber rattling aside, we ne... (Below threshold)
epador:

Saber rattling aside, we need to be mindful of history. While the Vandals are not quite at the gates (or perhaps they are already past them?), our democracy could easily face the fate of Greece and Rome. The questions include whether singly or as groups the Muslims, Chinese, or Indians (or even the N. Koreans) will topple our ability to dominate the world and defend ourselves. Or will we simply crumble from within? Do we really have the guts to mobilize the entire country with military draft and retool the economy for war? Albeit a different kind of war than in the past, and one that will bring greater trials to our own soil than we've seen in a century and a half? The infighting and posturing post Katrina is a sad example of what may be to come.

Shhhh. Don't say bad things... (Below threshold)
SCSIwuzzy:

Shhhh. Don't say bad things about Islam. Or MU (with help from Muhamed, peas be upon him) will Destroy Us All.

Hmmm.The ... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

The infighting and posturing post Katrina is a sad example of what may be to come.

Actually I'm rather glad for that excessive rhetoric and the current political divisiveness.

Before a significant change in the American polity there has always been a time of intense confrontation and turmoil, even violence. But that confrontation allows America to both embrace the new and air out grievances of the old. It's a transitioning phase. Sometimes the transition becomes extreme, a la Civil War. Sometimes it becomes absurd, a la Hippies.

What we're seeing now is the evolution of the current polity into a new structure. Where it'll end up I don't know, but I'm guessing that the country is going to shift right-ward. *shrug* perhaps that's wishful thinking so "grain of salt" time.

But it's better that it happens now in a time of relative peace rather than in the midst of a major shooting war involving nuclear weapons.

I don't know why I'm even b... (Below threshold)
Robin:

I don't know why I'm even bothering to post over here but I might like to put my two cents in. My absolute gut feeling is that this MU is a freak posing as a Moslem. He has come on after me, here and other places like Darth Vader with a scythe. Only the master of this blog knows his email address and possibly he could do some treacking. I am totally cognizent of the Islamic religion because I was married to a moderate Moslem for nine years. I also know the arguements the radicals make. He is not using the correct phrasology or intonation of a Moslem nutcake. THIS GUY IS A FAKE. Continuing to allow him to post under this pseudonym is only inviting this mischief. I don't know, just my opinion, take it or leave it. Do what you want.
Mac Lorry,
If you just happen to show up here, today is International Womens Day. Happy that. I remember our long conversation with great fondness and just want to say Hi!

Come on, 'gutter religion'?... (Below threshold)

Come on, 'gutter religion'?

Isn't that how Louis Farrakhan described Judaism?

It was ugly when Farrakhan said it, and it is ugly seeing it here on Wizbang.

I prefer to call Islam what... (Below threshold)
Robert:

I prefer to call Islam what it truly is. The religion of beheadings. That is their true speciality, well that and suicide bombing.

I don't believe either Sami... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

I don't believe either Samiyah Diaz or MU are representative of Islam. Most people's lives are filled with family, friends, work and recreation, at least in societies that have some semblance to the modern world. In such places typical Muslims are probably going along to get along with the devout and more extreme practitioners of their faith. The on going conflict with Israel and the war on terror are strong factors in unifying and radicalizing Muslims.

From what I have learned in a number of discussions with Muslims and people like Robin, who lived among Muslims, is that Islam as a whole is not readily compatible with 21st century western culture. Our best course of action may be disengagement to the greatest extent possible.

Hmmm.Our ... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

Our best course of action may be disengagement to the greatest extent possible.

The only problem is that every year that passes the maximum ceiling for the amount of damage a terrorist group can do goes up. Right now we're worried about a nuclear weapon or a biological agent. There are some worries also about Liquid Natural Gas carrier ships as they're little more than huge floating bombs. I think one detonated in Texas by accident and it largely wiped out one coastal town.

But consider the next great challenge of the 21st century is to colonize space. But the danger of this is that any sizeable mass in space can become an instrument of terror. With coloonization comes the potential for terror groups to subvert orbital cargo vessels to use as a 9/11 style attack. Only in this case the damage could include the destruction of an entire city.

No nuclear weapons required.

So really part of the question isn't just whether or not we can disassociate ourselves successfully. It's whether or not we're just kicking the problem down the road a bit when it'll become even more dangerous.

ed,What I mean by ... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

ed,

What I mean by disengagement is to stop immigration of Muslims and wean ourselves off middle-east oil. I'm not suggesting we ignore any threats to our country.

The U.S. has denied immigration of many people over the years for much less reasons than can be demonstrated for Muslims. We simply can't make Denmark's mistake and hope to have domestic tranquility. The first time a Hollywood move takes a serious poke at Islam we'll have riots in our streets and bounties on the heads of move produces. The fact that Islam's contempt for free speech has been amply demonstrated is all the justification the U.S. needs to stop Muslim immigration.

The U.S. should develop our coal, oil shale and nuclear energy resources so that we are much less dependent on oil imports. This would allow the U.S. far more flexibility in dealing with middle-east problems. As it is now, the U.S. is compelled to do whatever it takes to keep the oil flowing, and that often puts us at odds with Muslim nations.

Basically, we would keep Muslims out of our country and stay out of Muslim countries as much as possible.

Hey Mac!Hi again. J... (Below threshold)
Robin:

Hey Mac!
Hi again. Just wanted to say once more what I said before, thanks for our discussion back when.

I think your point of disengagement is a good one. The more we "bring it to them" the more they are willing to up the ante. I just hope this does not mean disengaging the entire Moslem world who IS willing to meet in a peaceful manner: cultural exchanges, business etc. God this makes me so sad that it is even an option that I would consider. It means the moderate Arab world being isolated with the crazies. We all live on this planet folks and we have to be willing to engage in diplomacy when at all possible. I don't know how this is going to be solved and it breaks my heart for this to be the case.

But please guys, get educated and stop hurling insults at Arabs. It does absolutely no good and only fuels the flames from here in the states. Be responsible for the words that cross your lips and learn how you can help if even in a small way. Think of our troops if nothing else, they are there trying so hard to get Iraq back together and working amongst these people. Hatred from here spills out, like a pebble in a pond.

Mac Lorry,One more t... (Below threshold)
Robin:

Mac Lorry,
One more thing, I have been blogging on some Arab blogs and you would be amazed. There is no desire to squelch free speech at all, in fact they revel in it on the internet. This is what we need to recognize. Like our prior "ride in the car" most of them are just like us in so many ways. Shoot, even the Saudis on these blogs are looking for girlfriends and speaking out. It'spretty hilarious when you come to think about it because even I wasn't aware to what extent it was out there. It's the oppressive regimes and the crazies that need to be dealt with, not the normal westernized teenagers coming here for a college education. We MUST keep the doors open or else it's going to get even worse. Remember, balance, a word I really try to keep in mind.

Robin,I don't doub... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Robin,

I don't doubt what you are saying about most Muslims is true. In my initial post on this topic I said "Most people's lives are filled with family, friends, work and recreation, at least in societies that have some semblance to the modern world. In such places typical Muslims are probably going along to get along with the devout and more extreme practitioners of their faith."

All the major religions have ardent followers along with moderate and casual followers. The problem is that wherever Islam is practiced the inevitable ardent followers believe it's their God given right to impose their beliefs on others by violence and threat of violence. The fear they create is why moderate Muslims are silent when atrocities are committed in the name of Islam. We can't help moderate Muslims, but we can and should keep Islamic extremism out of the U.S.

Hmmm.1. <blockquot... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

1.

What I mean by disengagement is to stop immigration of Muslims and wean ourselves off middle-east oil. I'm not suggesting we ignore any threats to our country.

I completely understand your point of view. My point is that this might just be kicking the issue down the road a couple decades. So we adopt a perfect isolationist position where there is no interaction between America and Islam. A sort of Chinese Wall where no physical wall exists but a procedural one does.

But that still doesn't deal with the issue that each year that passes the potential maximum damage from terrorism goes up with almost no ceiling. And the Chinese Wall still won't protect us if the Islamic work somehow is able to get into space along with us. What weapon could possibly stop an asteriod directed to strike at America? What could we do to stop a terrorist hijacked Saudi Arabian suborbital cargo carrier from crashing into Atlanta?

The problem is that the isolationism only works if the other side cannot penetrate. But as time passes more and more technologies will erupt that will make penetration much easier.

2.

One more thing, I have been blogging on some Arab blogs and you would be amazed.

Sure I believe you. The problem aren't the people who just want to live and let live. The problem is that these people who want to live and let live won't confront people who support terror. There's a certain fecklessness in the muslim world that refuses to accept that they're responsible for reeling in the crazies. And since they're either passive in this regard or actively supporting the crazies I don't see why they should be given a pass on any of this.

If America has to retaliate with a nuclear strike on Tehran it won't matter that there's a really nice guy living there who's working his way through college and looking for a girlfriend. He'll be zapped right along with the crazies.

But it's up to him to do something about the crazies before it gets to that point. And he's is not doing his job.

If possible please answer t... (Below threshold)

If possible please answer these questions honestly:

1. Do you think each and every Muslim is a terrorist?

2. Do you think that each and every Muslim wants to crash a plane( Jay in your case a futuristic sub-orbital system which doesn't even exist) into America?

3. Do you think it is correct to kill innocent Iranian's by bombing them with a nuclear bomb just because you imagine they are going to use a nuclear bomb which they don't even have?


Ed,But th... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Ed,

But that still doesn't deal with the issue that each year that passes the potential maximum damage from terrorism goes up with almost no ceiling.

I agree, but for your point to be meaningful as a rebuttal to my claim that we should disengage, you must believe that by engaging Muslims we can moderate them. While I hope you are correct, I have reservations because of the very nature of Islam. Given that nature, I feel our engagement only increases the danger from future Islamic extremists.

Jay you forgot to mention t... (Below threshold)

Jay you forgot to mention that besides my views on G. Bush, I also wished Osama and Saddam were killed.
You forgot to state that before my comments on bombing cell phone companies you assumed that all Palestinian's had blown up their telephone lines. I thought you knew what sarcasm is.
When did I say I was not 'really fond' of Ms. Diaz, I said she was not a "real Muslim"
Have I ever said that I am only fond of Muslims? The prejudice you have against Islam is very clear from what you say.

1. Do you think ea... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:
1. Do you think each and every Muslim is a terrorist?

No.

2. Do you think that each and every Muslim wants to crash a plane( Jay in your case a futuristic sub-orbital system which doesn't even exist) into America?

No.

3. Do you think it is correct to kill innocent Iranian's by bombing them with a nuclear bomb just because you imagine they are going to use a nuclear bomb which they don't even have?

That's the problem with nuclear weapons. If Iran becomes a nuclear power it's subject to a preemptive nuclear attack just as the U.S. has been for over 60 years. Iran can make threats now without much danger because they can't do much damage to the U.S. That changes when they acquire nuclear weapons and that's not the fault of the U.S. Given the technological lead the U.S. has, maybe it would be smarter for Iran to not exercise it's right to have nuclear weapons.

Just a little information:<... (Below threshold)
Robin:

Just a little information:

Israel has nuclear weapons and has had them for a long time. Do I think it is OK? NOOOOO! But then again do I think it is OK for us to have them? NOOOOOO! Upping the ante, upping the ante, when is it going to stop? No answers to my own question coming from me.

Mac,
I knew it existed from my own info on Saudi, but there are MANY jails in the Middleast that house these crazies. You think Guantanamo is a secret, try these where NO one has access. You can get some info from human rights sights but not much. I got the info from the connections I have made since we last talked. By the way, my ex was camping just 10 kilometers from Abquaiq oil refinery, the one that was attacked two weeks ago in Saudi Arabia. It scared the hell out of him just like the dud SCUD that landed in front of his home during the first gulf war.
Just another note. This might interest you. There are several Christian fundamentalists blogging over there and their contention is that they have alot more in common with Moslems than they do with someone say such as myself who you know is very liberal. They converse with eachother and many of the Christians live there. Just something I wanted to share because I immediately thought of you when I came across it.
CIAO!

Robin,Isr... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Robin,

Israel has nuclear weapons and has had them for a long time. Do I think it is OK? NOOOOO! But then again do I think it is OK for us to have them? NOOOOOO! Upping the ante, upping the ante, when is it going to stop? No answers to my own question coming from me.

The whole point of non-proliferation is to minimize the danger that nuclear weapons will be used. Every new nuclear power makes the current nuclear powers uneasy particularly if the new member of the nuclear club is openly belligerent. This is why the U.S. and other nations are pressing Iran hard on the issue.

Apart from non-proliferation, development of an effective anti-missile program, which Bush has been pushing for, would prevent the U.S. from being put into the dangerous position of having to consider a preemptive attack to prevent Iran or some similarly country from launching it's own attack. We could wait for the actual attack and then decide how to respond. Knowing their missiles might not get though would be an additional deterrent factor for Iran.

There are several Christian fundamentalists blogging over there and their contention is that they have alot more in common with Moslems than they do with someone say such as myself who you know is very liberal.

For some issues that may be true. I expect many Muslims in the U.S. oppose gay marriage just as many Christians do. I respect law abiding hard working people who either already are or who strive to become Americanized and work within our system of government. Yet the Christian religion views all who deny the deity of Jesus as being followers of the anti-christ. Telling a Muslim that he has been deceived by Satan can get you killed in many Islamic nations. No doubt Christians in Islamic nations keep a low profile.

Wherever a religion is practiced it results in some ardent followers. What seems to be unique to Islam is that it's ardent practitioners come to conclude that they have a right, if not a mandate from God to dominate non-believers using whatever means necessary. You told me once that moderate Muslims become a bigger target than westerners if they speak out against Islamic extremists, yet these moderate Muslims can blend in just by keeping up appearances. A Christian simply can't go along with those who deny Christ, and so violence is inevitable. To avoid that here in the U.S. I feel it's best to stop Muslim immigration as a first step.

Mac LorryI am well a... (Below threshold)
Robin:

Mac Lorry
I am well aware of the nuclear progams which you
described. I was speaking from a humanistic point of view rather than a political one. At the end of the day, I'm a human, not a politician.
(note I make the distinction)
I was just offering an olive branch to you, that's all, on the other issue. I'm sorry you're not interested. I was talking about the moderates Mac, not the extremists which unfortunately you seem to still be stuck on. I'm not trying to be mean about it, and you know I'm not from our prior converstions. I guess you are just in another car than I am.

Robin,It's a wonde... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Robin,

It's a wonderful dream to not have to live in fear of nuclear weapons, but when we wake up we realize the real question is how do we live with them.

Given the fear moderate Muslims have of their more ardent brethren, befriending a hundred moderates is no defense against a single Islamic extremists on a mission to dominate non-believers. Until moderate Muslims have backbone enough to stand against extremists they are actually enablers by giving extremists cover. I know it's not the liberal way of thinking, but it's the liberal way of thinking that has put Denmark in the intractable position it finds itself in. The question is, can liberals learn from their mistakes before we repeat them here in the U.S.?

Mac Lorry,I repeat, ... (Below threshold)
Robin:

Mac Lorry,
I repeat, I am a human being not a politician. It is up to the diplomats to solve the nuclear situation we find ourselves in, not me or you. We can discuss it all you want, but neither one of us can do a darn thing about it, so I revert to my human being status.
Please do not attach my name to such statements as "From what I've learned in a number of discussions with Moslems and people like Robin who lived among Moslems, is that Islam as a whole is not readily compatable with the 21st century western culture". Where did you get that from in our conversation? I was trying to educate you to the opposite and I thought we ended on a note of understanding. It does not feel good to me that you took what I said and twisted it. I am not suggesting that befriending a hundred moderate moslems is going to rid us of terrorism either. I was trying to tell YOU that fundamentalist Christians living in the Middle East have a communication and understanding with moderate Moslems and that they share more than they don't share. Period. I do not want to go back to Point A with you again. I simply stated to you that I had fond memories of our conversation and when I found this out I thought of you. Perhaps I am totally dilusioned but I was simply trying to offer you something I thought you might benefit from as one human being to another, just like all of us live in this great big pond together. I happen to think that OUR Lord Jesus would rather have us find commanalities and peace rather than get stuck in a rut of using his name to justify intolerance.
Once again, please do not use my name in any sentence deriding Moslems. I shared with you and it is not very Christian of you to use me to justify your vision that I do not share with you. Thank you and I trust you to honor my wishes

"Do you think each... (Below threshold)
Ric:

"Do you think each and every Muslim is a terrorist?"

I belive every "extreme" or "fundamental" Muslim (as MSM likes to label them) is only a true and devout Muslim doting on the word of their false prophet. I believe every committed follower of Mohammed is a potential terrorist. All any Muslim needs to do is put to action what their prophet teaches, and viola - a terrorist is born.

"Do you think that each and every Muslim wants to crash a plane (Jay in your case a futuristic sub-orbital system which doesn't even exist) into America?"

See above. Given Muslims are practitioners of taqqya and kitman, I really can not believe it if they tell me they don't want to hurt my family. Frankly, I think every devout Muslim would cut off my head given the opportunity. In case your not picking it up - I will not make a good slave, and I will not bargain away the security of my family or fellow Americans.

"Do you think it is correct to kill innocent Iranian's by bombing them with a nuclear bomb just because you imagine they are going to use a nuclear bomb which they don't even have?"

Personally, if matters escalated to such and it would save American lives, yes. Knowing what Muslim's believe and what Iran's president professes, coupled with my inability to retreat in the face of evil, I would not stand whistling with my hands in my pockets waiting for the first volley to be served to me.

I would not lose sleep over a nuclear weapon launch though. The USA has become so tangled in its own web of sensitivity, appeasement, and political correctness, by the time someone found their cajones and pressed the button, the government would have led us into dhimmitude.

Dear friends,<br ... (Below threshold)

Dear friends,


Please try to understand Iran does NOT want to become have a nuclear bomb. The UN will monitor each and everything it does, so my message to all you Americans is please feel safe.
However if USA attacks Iran at this stage it would be disastrous.

Robin,I was very o... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Robin,

I was very open with you that I'm a conservative and a fundamentalist Christian. I did learn from the experiences you shared with me and I was moved to tears by your story about escaping from Beirut.

We can discuss it all you want, but neither one of us can do a darn thing about it, so I revert to my human being status.

That's the thinking of people who don't bother to vote; their one vote can't make a difference, so they don't vote by the millions. Western culture is a marketplace of ideas and you have no way of knowing who reads Wizbang and other blogs or what influence a given idea may have. For all you know Bush or one of his advisors may be a reading this very topic. Certainly you must be aware of how blogs like Wizbang got the AP to correct their phony story last week. Posting here is worth taking the time to express your best ideas on how to make the world a better place.

From what I've learned in a number of discussions with Moslems and people like Robin who lived among Moslems, is that Islam as a whole is not readily compatible with the 21st century western culture".

I apologize. You certainly did not express to me "that Islam as a whole is not readily compatible with the 21st century western culture." That's my conclusion from "what I've learned in a number of discussions with Moslems and people like Robin who lived among Moslems." I should have been more clear about what's my conclusion and what I learned from you. I'll stop using your name in posts not directed specifically to you.

Where did you get that from in our conversation?

I learned several things from our conversation, but one thing that moved me was your statements to the effect, and I paraphrase here, that moderate Muslims become bigger targets for retribution than westerners if they speak out against Islamic extremists. And this takes place in Islamic nations where most Muslims are moderate and well educated according to what I learned from you.

Please tell me if the above paragraph does not accurately express what you told me. I'll then go back to our original discussion and post your exact statements and ask you to explain what you meant.

I was trying to tell YOU that fundamentalist Christians living in the Middle East have a communication and understanding with moderate Moslems and that they share more than they don't share. Period.

I'm not sure what part of my prior post contradicts what you said. I have no doubt that fundamentalist Christians and moderate Muslims can live in peace with each other and will often agree politically on social and financial polices. However, you only have to read what the Apostle Paul wrote to realize that the religious view of fundamentalist Christians is that Muslims have been deceived by Satan. Show me a Christian who doesn't agree with that statement and I'll show you a Christian who is not a fundamentalist in that they reject the clear teachings of the New Testament. No spirit who denies the divinity of Jesus is from God and the only other option is Satan. There is no third choice or neutral position according to the Bible.

A fundamentalist Christian has a duty to inform others about God's plan of salvation, but it's up to those who hear that message to accept it or reject it. A fundamentalist Muslim has a duty to convert others to Islam on pain of death, with the exception of Christians and Jews, who must be subjugated and made to feel subjugated. Christians are free to convert to other religions, but Muslims do so on pain of death. Christians don't need to defend God from insults as God is well able to deal with all people in love and mercy and judgment as fulfills His wise purpose. Muslims apparently feel their God is unable to defend his own honor, so they must do so for him, as evidenced by the cartoon riots. Can you see that these characteristics of Islam make in incompatible with 21st century western cultures.

No one can guarantee that allowing Muslims immigration into the U.S. won't produce a significant number of fundamentalist Muslims in this nation, just as it has in Denmark and France. These people cannot be appeased and it matters not how many moderate Muslims there are as so few have backbone enough to facedown the fundamentalists. Why would the U.S. be so stupid as to import such problems.

Perhaps I am totally dilusioned but I was simply trying to offer you something I thought you might benefit from as one human being to another, just like all of us live in this great big pond together.

I learned a long time ago that emotions alone don't foster wise choices personally or politically. Parents must often make choices for their children that go against there own feelings because they know it's best for the child in the long run. It makes me feel great to help other people and I have compassion for others who are stuck in bad situations. Yet I have learned that it's a poor investment of time, energy, treasure and emotions to try to help people who are unwilling to help themselves. Moderate Muslims must find the backbone to facedown the fundamentalists before we should welcome them into this nation.

It's inevitable that a conservative and a liberal would disagree on such issues, yet I hope we can at least continue to respect each other.

Hmmm.I ag... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

I agree, but for your point to be meaningful as a rebuttal to my claim that we should disengage, you must believe that by engaging Muslims we can moderate them. While I hope you are correct, I have reservations because of the very nature of Islam. Given that nature, I feel our engagement only increases the danger from future Islamic extremists.

Frankly I wouldn't characterise my statements as being a "rebuttal" because I really can't say you're wrong or that I have an opposing opinion. I'm just uncertain if we disengage with the Islamic world that things won't get even worse.

*shrug* I guess we'll just have to survive and find out.

[email protected] robin... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

@ robin

1.

We can discuss it all you want, but neither one of us can do a darn thing about it, so I revert to my human being status.

That's an evasion robin.

All you're doing posting that comment is trying to cover your ass. Frankly the whole "you can't hold me accountable for my opinions" doesn't sit well with me.

2.

Do you think that each and every Muslim wants to crash a plane( Jay in your case a futuristic sub-orbital system which doesn't even exist) into America?

That was me, not Jay.

3.

Israel has nuclear weapons and has had them for a long time. Do I think it is OK? NOOOOO! But then again do I think it is OK for us to have them? NOOOOOO! Upping the ante, upping the ante, when is it going to stop? No answers to my own question coming from me.

I personally have no problems with Israel having nuclear weapons. I don't fear Israel going out and nuking anyone and everyone just to have a pissing contest. Israel wants to survive in a world where nearly every single nation is against it. Where America is largely the only substantial and consistent defender and ally of Israel. And where a hundred or more nations have stated as a matter of policy that the destruction of Israel would be a good thing.

4.

I was trying to tell YOU that fundamentalist Christians living in the Middle East have a communication and understanding with moderate Moslems and that they share more than they don't share. Period.

Then I'd suggest you go to Egypt and talk to the Coptic Christians there. Maybe that'll wake you up, but I doubt it.

[email protected] robin... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

@ robin

Need a reference for how Christians fare in muslim dominated countries?

link

There you go. Don't ever say I never gave anything to you. Particularly since it took me all of 3 seconds to find.

How about that Google eh?

link

In case your fingers are broken and you're unable to Google.

Mac Lorry,I happened... (Below threshold)
Robin:

Mac Lorry,
I happened to have voted in every single election since 1972 when I turned 18 and we received the vote that year. I have even voted by absentee ballot when abroad thank you very much. I even work the phone banks for, oh NO, the Democratic party
Quite frankly, you are stuck on stupid Mac. You do not even wish to look outside of your own narrow views to make friends. I find this dispicable and I feel totally free to tell you this because hey, guess, there are other people out there with different views than yours. And furthermore, it is those very people who are the diplomats and have to find common grounds on which to agree in order to avoid disaster, be it nuclear or a priest brokering peace between gang bangers. I was even going to offer you some sites with my olive branch as one human to the next, but you are totally again, STUCK ON STUPID!
And to think, you warned me you weren't a nice guy when I sent my Happy Valentines to you. Boy, did you prove yourself right on that one. Post all you want about me Mac, use our conversation for whatever vile purpose of racism you want, but I will not be a part of this. Bye Bye Wizbang and all the rest of you bigots. And that is coming from a proud L-I-B-E-R-A-L.

Hmmmm.I h... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmmm.

I happened to have voted in every single election since 1972 when I turned 18 and we received the vote that year. I have even voted by absentee ballot when abroad thank you very much. I even work the phone banks for, oh NO, the Democratic party

Frankly that seems a rather insipid and irrelvent comment. Did I miss something where Mac Lorry called your voting attendence in question?

it is those very people who are the diplomats and have to find common grounds on which to agree in order to avoid disaster

And they've been doing such a wonderful job with Iran with it's nuclear program, Sudan with it's genocidal programme in Darfur, Robert Mugabe with his "Let's completely depopulate Zimbabwe", etc etc etc.

but I will not be a part of this. Bye Bye Wizbang and all the rest of you bigots. And that is coming from a proud L-I-B-E-R-A-L.

Well you're a L-I-B-E-R-A-L proud enough to run away with your tail between your legs. That's not a first.

ed, FYII ... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

ed,

FYI

I guess that's the last we'll hear from Robin.

In a prior topic I patiently let her explain how she saw the world without criticizing her views. Because of that she kept expressing that I was some sort of nice person even though I kept warning her that I was no such thing, at least in the opinion of liberals I have debated with. I also let her know up front I was a conservative and beyond that a fundamentalist Christian. There was no attempt to deceive her, I honestly wanted to hear her point of view.

I'm not surprised we disagree on issues, what did surprise me is how personally nasty she got while I was being as nice as I could without retreating from my opinions. She accuses me of racism and bigotry because I don't agree with her views. Since when are religious groups defined as a race? Why is it ok for her to disagree with my views, but when I disagree with hers I'm a bigot? Is that what being a liberal means?

I would like to engage a liberal in reasoned debate, but I haven't found any who are willing to stick to the issues without resorting to personal attacks. It seems to me that liberals lead with their emotions, yet they like to think they are intellectually superior. When they get into even a mild debate, they get nasty when they can't defend their positions.

Hmmmm.Why... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmmm.

Why is it ok for her to disagree with my views, but when I disagree with hers I'm a bigot? Is that what being a liberal means?

Liberals think Conservatives are evil.
Conservatives think Liberals are crazy.

I said that as a joke some months ago when I went out to dinner with some friends of mine. It seemed true then and it's been true ever since. No idea if I came up with that or if I'm parroting someone else. Either way I think it's still true.

What this means is that no matter how we try to accomodate liberals in discussions we'll always be evil when we express our opinions. And since we're evil that means that anything and everything is both permissible and even necessary. To defeat evil requires the use of techniques and tactics that may be reprehensible, but are completely justified if it succeeds in defeating evil.

This excuses anything.

This excuses rigging elections and stuffing ballot boxes. This excuses slashing tires. This excuses outing homosexual Republicans. This excuses violating the sanctity of a sealed divorce proceeding by a partisan judge to eliminate a strong Republican politician. This excuses endangering the country by exposing significant national secrets. etc etc etc.

So you find that discussing anything with robin like an adult is impossible? That's because she thinks you're evil *because* you think like a conservative. And when you do that you're a bad person.

And because conservatives view that sort of nonsense as an example of absolutely crazy behavior.

...

Frankly I'm a conservative but not a Christian. I'm actually an Animist. However I deeply respect Christianity and I've had, and have, several reverends, pastors and priests as good friends. I've rarely if ever seen anything bad come from people who've embraced Christianity so as you can imagine I deeply disagree with liberals about the worth of Christianity.

That liberals must go back hundreds of years to find anything bad about Christianity tells me a lot about them.

*shrug* I really can't say anything more as there's nothing left. Liberals are simply crazy. They grew up as THE privledged class when they were children and they still continue to do so. They live in a perpetual childhood where nothing bad can happen and if it does, it can simply be wished away.

Is there poverty? Wish and it's gone.
Is there AIDS? Wish and there's nothing there.
Is there violence? Wish and people live in peace.

And if that wishing doesn't work? Then that's because there are evil people in the world struggling to prevent the good things from happening. So the answer then is to wish harder or eliminate the evil people. Because you have to think of the good you're trying to do, and evil needs to be defeated for the good of all Mankind.

And if you need to break a few eggs to make an omlette, you'll be forgiven because it's not how you get there, but that you do get there.

The essence of conservatism is the recognition of reality. That not everything can be controlled. That random chance does happen. That there are forces that we can sometimes neither understand nor properly interpret. All this is required to have a belief in God, which probably explains why so many die-hard liberals are athiests and are often new-agers.

The essence of New Liberalism is the passionate belief that Belief can change anything. That empathy means understanding, when it is nothing of the kind. That hope unalloyed with bitter reality is truth.

In other words; crazy.

...

As for Islam, I have no great hopes really. Islam has been a harbringer of slavery and slaughter for generations now and I seriously doubt it'll ever change withou suffering the most horrendous bloodbath. The Islamic world simply hasn't experienced what a modern episode of Total War can do. They don't even understand that the Iraq War is a utter anomaly. That in a Total War against America we wouldn't respond with precision guided munitions to safeguard their families. That we'd treat them as we treated the Germans living in Hamburg and Dresden. The Japanese living in Tokyo and Osaka. Not every nightmare begins and ends with nuclear fire. Sometimes regular fire can do just as well.

What I fear most is that this infantilism will simply be continued by liberals in the hope of generating empathy. That if we show we care enough that they'll break down like if it were all a Jerry Springer episode. That we'd all laugh and cry and hug. That we'd stare into each other's faces and tell each other the deaths are long past and we'll view the future together.

Which is foolish since it relegates the true nature of Islam to a happenstance. This view hides the murderous nature of Islam.

I figure New Liberalism will be burned out of existence in a few short years. The problem is that people who lose a closely and jealously guarded ideology often seek the most opposite extreme. Once shown that their beliefs is an utter lie and that Islam is a deadly danger, they'll adopt the most dangerous path and seek extinction for Islam.

What's worse is that followers of New Liberalism must deny any path but the one they're on. To do so is to reject and renounce the New Liberalism, and to do that means apostasy. And there's nothing more contemptible than an apostate.

So if it does come time to fight, the New Liberals will either be unable or they will shift to the extreme. Where a conservative would shift to the necessary the New Liberal will shift to the maximum in both desperation and humiliation.

It's harsh but I think true in many respects.

My 2 shekels.

ed,Thanks for shar... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

ed,

Thanks for sharing your insights on liberals. It certainly rings true and I will remember this lesson when engaging liberals in the future. I find liberals are very intarresting folks (in-tar-resting as stuck in their thinking) and it can be fun to debate them. However, if you see me being nice (rather than just civil) to a liberal in the future, just remind me of the Robin incident.

Just to further explain my thinking on Islam, I believe we should embrace and empower moderate Muslims in other nations, but we are making a big mistake if we allow immigration of large numbers of Muslims into this country. Muslim fundamentalists now realize it was a historic mistake to not fill the new world with Muslims when the doors were wide open, and they are now seeking to correct that mistake. While most Muslim immigrants are likely to be moderates, they give cover to the extremists. The moderates build the mosques and supply the crowds of worshipers the extremists come from and hid among. The extremists can't long exist without the moderates, and thus, the moderates become enablers of Islamic extremism. Because moderates Muslims tolerate Islamic extremism they share some responsibility for the actions of extremists. To me, that's justification enough to shut the door on Muslim immigration.

Hmmm.I agree with ... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

I agree with you to a point. The only real question I have is still the one I had before:

What is a moderate muslim?

I think ultimately most muslims think the same as the extremists, but don't have the personal courage to act on this thinking. That's why there's so much visible support for them. The only time there is a collision between "moderate" muslims and terrorists is when the terrorists target the "moderate" muslims. When the terrorists target anybody else, the "moderate" muslims are completely fine with this.

sigh. I'm afraid nothing is going to get resolved until a lot more blood has been spilled. Traditionally muslims fear really only one thing: Ghenghis Khan. He went through their nations like a plague and was responsible for ending their "Golden" era. I'm afraid we might have to do the same thing. I hope not but the endpoint is looking clearer and clearer.

I firmly believe that this will turn into a religious war between Islam and Christianity / Hinduism. I figure it'll really start off in Nigeria or the Sudan. I think current Christian thought is going to become more militant as Islamic forces keep raising the pressure on Christian communities in Africa. Sooner or later the money going for education and infrastructure projects will be diverted to weapons. I also think a number of devout Christian ex-US Army missionaries will be enlisted as a training cadre a la Iraq.

Then it'll turn into a war by proxy for the rest of the world with the Islamic forces getting a good hammering. At that point I figure the battlefield will shift to Europe as defeatd foreign fighters return to Europe from Africa and begin the civil war there.

I ran the scenario before a good friend of mine who is a devout Catholic and he thought it was very possible. Particularly since patience for Islamic nonsense is rapidly decreasing in America.

ed,What i... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

ed,

What is a moderate muslim?

A very good and important question. Your description also seems to describe what we observe to be the case regardless of what actual beliefs or degree of courage is involved.

I firmly believe that this will turn into a religious war between Islam and Christianity / Hinduism.

I agree except I believe it is already a religious war and it's between Islam and Christianity. Those who value their freedom will get involved, others will get sucked in, and the Jews are a target mostly because of where they live.


HmmmPretty much th... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm

Pretty much the reason why I include Hinduism:

1. Fundamentalism Hinduism is on the rise in India.
2. English speaking India has a close relationship with America so terrorist attacks on America very much adversely affects India.
3. India already has bad relations with Islamic countries re: Pakistan and Bangladesh
4. There's a great deal of Islamic/Hindu violence going on in India that will only escalate if an open religious war breaks out between Islam and Christianity.

Frankly the only thing even worse than fundamentalist Islam is fundamentalist Hinduism. If you think the muslims are bad you should take a close look at the militant Hindus. The preferred method of killing infidels is by burning them alive. Compared to that beheading is actually rather humane.

What I find curious is that if fundamentalist Hinduism really gets some momentum going and decides to combat Islam, the Islamic world is in for a lot of hurt. You can trace a line from India to the Atlantic coastline without ever traversing a non-Islamic country.

ed,I'm not familia... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

ed,

I'm not familiar with Hinduism, fundaments or otherwise. Does fundamentalist Hinduism teach forced conversion like Islam does? How do they treat Christians and Jews in India, assuming there are any?

Hmmm.Hindu fundame... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

Hindu fundamentalism is really very unlike Christian or Muslim fundamentalism because Hinduism isn't based on a single deity or even a single book. Christians depend on the Bible and Muslims depend on the Koran. What this does is give a simple profound focus to those religions where all have a common point of reference. Hindus however have a multitude of gods and a plethora of books, so there's a certain lack of focus involved there.

The two essences of Hindu fundamentalism, as I see it, are a combination of ethnic identity and a highly defensive religious fervor. I say defensive because Hindus, though not all, seem to think that Hinduism is vulnerable to conversion to either Christianity or Islam because of that lack of focus and because Hinduism already has a tradition of incorporating other beliefs and gods into the Hindu system while Christianity and Islam has as a guiding principle that there is only one God and no other gods can be allowed.

The ethnic part is fairly simple; it is an outgrowth of Indian nationalism but less about being Indian than Hindu. It's in part a desire to see Hinduism and Hindus elevated in status, a rejection of the sub-status of the Raj period, in part an inferiority complex and a desire for greatness unalloyed. Muslims have a similar desire for a return to the Golden Age of Islam and to see their enemies cast down and subjugated.

Evidently there was once a great Hindu empire that had been destroyed a long time ago that the fundamentalist Hindus would like to see revived.

As for how fundamentalist Hindus deal with other religions, it frankly depends. There is a significant amount of violence involved when dealing with other religions because of the ethnic aspect of it. In dealings with Christianity there is always the fear of conversion because Christians are very good at that. There are also echos of the Raj where Hindus were humiliated constantly so there's that aspect.

I think fundamentalist Hinduism and Christianity could co-exist in the world, but not in the same nation. However I don't think that's much of a problem because fundamentalist Hinduism is largely oriented around India.

On the other hand the relationship between fundamentalist Hinduism and Islam is very bad with a lot of violence and death involved.

ed,Thanks for all ... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

ed,

Thanks for all the info about Hinduism. I had to Google Animist to know what you believe. Obviously, you are well informed in religious matters and I respect that and won't preach to you about religion. However, I am curious as to how you came to be Animist, but I understand that's likely getting too personal. So I'll leave it at that and end by saying I have long respected the opinions you post and the manner in which you respond to others. When I scroll through various topics I stop whenever I see your trademark opening "Hmmm."

Best regards,

Hmmm.My Animism is... (Below threshold)
ed:

Hmmm.

My Animism is fairly simple and straightforward. I don't go in for any sort of "hello mr. boulder" kind of cartoony nonsense. I frankly believe that the act of creating something imbues the object with the spirit of the creator. Thus God created the Heavens and the Earth and so all of the Earth has been imbued with his Spirit, and not just within the creatures that live upon it.

In essence what I try to do is treat everyone and everything with proper respect, regardless if it is alive or not. What I find amusing is that there are plenty of people who resort to doing the same when it becomes an issue. I've seen many people caressing and cajoling a computer, a car or some other device or appliance. I've seen computer technicians pleading with racks of switches. So while I'm rather open about it, I'm certainly not alone. :)

Frankly I've seen and experienced a lot of nonsense in my life. Really like most people who haven't led a completely sheltered life. I've known personally those aspects of life that prove that America is as great and wonderful as it seems to be.

When I see, hear or read lefties condemning America for this or that I just have to laugh. These people really don't know what they're talking about. I've personally experienced just about every kind of racism and bigotry you can imagine. And most of that before I was 6 years old. Being an AmerAsian in South Korea during the 1960's wasn't a pleasant experience. Even now it's not a good life, but back then it meant a very hard life.

Some people it seems are just too sheltered for their own good.

Anyways. I look forward to reading more of your comments on other threads. And I too enjoy your point of view on many subjects. Just remember me when you're pleading with your computer to not eat that document you've been working on. Keep me in mind when you're cajoling the lawnmower to start.

:)




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