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Putting The "Moron" In "Oxymoron"

A long time ago, I was in a training class when the instructor brought up oxymorons. He tossed out the standard examples -- jumbo shrimp, pretty ugly, military intelligence, and so on. I offered my personal favorite:

Microsoft Works.

I got a gold star for that one.

Anyway, I think I now have one that puts even that one to shame:

Islamic Thinkers Society.

Because if there's one Society that is utterly inimical to thought, to debate, to inquisition, to challenging fundamental precepts, to making breakthroughs, it has to be Islam.

I seem to recall one Islamic "scholar" who said that all books besides the Koran were useless. They fell into two categories: those that supported the Koran, and were therefore redundant, and those that contradicted the Koran, and were therefore blasphemous.

I also don't recall any contributions to the world of knowledge that came from Islam in the last thousand years or so.

Well, that's not fair. They've shown the world such things as "the affects on the human body by nails and rat poison propelled by high explosives," "the proper way to behead someone on video," "how to slice off a clitoris with an unsterilized razor blade."

Islam's specialty, it seems, is taking things invented by others and using them for truly hideous purposes. They didn't invent the suicide bomber, but they made it into an art form. They didn't invent the AK-47, but they loved it so much Hezbollah uses it on their flag. They didn't invent female genital mutilation (I'm sorry, "female circumcision"), but they are the biggest pushers of it today. They didn't discover oil or all its uses, but they certainly revel in their possession of it.

It's somewhat appropriate. Islam itself is a derivative faith. One sociopathic, pedophilic lunatic took the tenets of Judaism and Christianity and grafted his own psychoses on top of it, instantly demoting the other two faiths as subsidiary, incomplete, and sadly lacking.

So much of Islam -- and the culture that goes with it -- seems built on insecurity. Anything that is holy or sacred to another faith instantly must be topped. Jerusalem is the Holy City to Jews and Christians? Why, it is also sacred to Muslims, even though it is never once mentioned in the Koran. Christians hold Sunday as their holy day, and the Jews Saturday? Why, our holy day is Friday, before theirs!

The Muslims are also the only people today who explicitly prescribe the death penalty for things such as heresy and apostasy -- saying things that contradict Islam, and leaving the faith. In both cases, it's simple thuggery -- you WILL NOT question us, or we will put you to death.

So, "Islamic Thinkers?"

That's a pretty good one. Even funnier than "guest host" and even more obscene than "UN Peacekeepers."


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Comments (38)

Jay: This is one of your be... (Below threshold)
M:

Jay: This is one of your best posts.

Fourteen hundred years ago ... (Below threshold)
OLDPUPPYMAX:

Fourteen hundred years ago a thug, bigshot wannabe decided the best way to power and wealth was to convince other thug bigshot wannabes that God was his bestest buddy. And rather than demanding an oath of poverty and prayer 14 hours/day, this really cool God said you could kill anybody who disagreed with you and steal his stuff. Hey, was Muhammed lucky to find a God like that or what?!

Just to natter, your 1000 y... (Below threshold)
David:

Just to natter, your 1000 years is a bit off. In the 11th century you have Ibn SIna who would have a claim as the father of midieval medicine and in the 12th century you have Ibn Rushd who is often discribed as the father of secular western thought. Indeed Raphael put Ibn Rushd in his famous painting "The School of Athens".

David,Averroes was m... (Below threshold)
Jess:

David,
Averroes was more a victim of Islam, rather than a star - he was excommunicated by the Almohads, and is rather widely viewed as the last of the "Islamic" scholars, at the end of Islam's "Golden Age" (late 900's ~ 1100 AD). That's pretty darn close to 1,000 years ago...

J (not Jay)

Jay Tea,So what is... (Below threshold)
ryan a:

Jay Tea,

So what is your take on the current US Ambassador to the UN, Zalmay Khalilzad?

US Dept of State Bio for Khalilzad.

I'm not so sure that Pre-Is... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

I'm not so sure that Pre-Islamic Arab Cultures get the credit they deserve in what the re-emerging West learned from the Middle East.

In an ironic twist, the fact that Islam froze Arab Culture in time to a degree might be connected to why they preserved much of the Roman & Greek literature and science.

I think he's a poor replace... (Below threshold)

I think he's a poor replacement for Bolton, and probably a heretic and a blasphemer in the eyes of the Islamic Thinkers Society. The former is more of a commentary on those in Congress who blocked Bolton; the latter I consider a mark of distinction.

Anything RELEVANT to bring to the table, Ryan?

J.

Anything RELEVANT to bri... (Below threshold)
ryan a:

Anything RELEVANT to bring to the table, Ryan?

Well, considering your fairly polemic post about Muslims, I thought it would be interesting to hear your take on the highest ranking Muslim in the Bush administration.

You often provide very well-argued posts, but for some reason when you write about Muslims and Islam you lose your grip somewhat.

After your broad-brushed, hyperbolic charcterizations of what Muslims contribute to this world, asking you for your take on the current US ambassador to the UN is completely relevant.

How a sane person can justi... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

How a sane person can justify a religion that kills people because they don't believe as muslims do, is a mystery to me? Not ryan. ww

No, Ryan, trying to find a ... (Below threshold)

No, Ryan, trying to find a tiny little loophole or poke at a possible exception through one individual is being a dickhead.

A more relevant comment would be to find places where my statements about the "Islamic Thinkers Society" or any of the other groups (CAIR, American Islamic Society, Hezbollah, Hamas) that claim -- with some authority -- to speak for Muslims are wrong. David did a good job shaving a couple hundred years off my "thousand years" reference, and I appreciate that.

You, though... you're just a twit.

J.

Jay,No, Ryan, t... (Below threshold)
ryan a:

Jay,

No, Ryan, trying to find a tiny little loophole or poke at a possible exception through one individual is being a dickhead.

The fact that the current ambassador to the UN is a Muslim is just a little more than a tiny loophole in your argument.

Your post was full of broad assumptions and hyperbolic overstatements. The argument you presented, while popular and entertaining to your usual audience, hardly holds any water.

A more relevant comment would be to find places where my statements about the "Islamic Thinkers Society" or any of the other groups (CAIR, American Islamic Society, Hezbollah, Hamas) that claim -- with some authority -- to speak for Muslims are wrong. David did a good job shaving a couple hundred years off my "thousand years" reference, and I appreciate that.

I knew you would try that angle. The problem is that you may have started off by talking about the Islamic Thinkers Society, but then you went tangential and started making broad claims about Islam and Muslims as a whole, which was not the best rhetorical choice IMO.

Broad, stereotypical claims such as yours are quite easy to pick apart. It's usually best to stick to specifics.

Now, let's see if you, as one of the primary authors of this site, can find a way to reply to me without resorting to pedantic name calling. While I may disagree with some of your writings, I still maintain a level of respect in the ways that I address you.

Well, just to be academic J... (Below threshold)
David:

Well, just to be academic J, Ibn Rushd still was very influential in western thought. He may have been the last Islamic scholar, but it should be noted that his time was around the start of the sucessful "Recoquista". Perhaps we can argue that Chritians destroyed Islamic scholaship.

And just to put things in perspective, this is around the same time as the Condemnations of Paris and the persecution of thinkers such as Roger Bacon.

Would "<a href="http://www.... (Below threshold)
ptg:

Would "Gay Mohammedans" qualify as an oxymoron?

Islamic society did have a ... (Below threshold)
SPQR:

Islamic society did have a period of beautiful art, and contributions to science, medicine and mathematics. Some but not all rooted in the Moorish culture in Spain and North Africa. Unfortunately, this period was more than half a millenia ago and that culture rather firmly rejected by the tenets of nearly a majority of Islamic sects today.

Way to go Jay. Excellent po... (Below threshold)

Way to go Jay. Excellent post.

BTW: Tweaking Ryan's nose is fun but you need to find a more worthy antagonist.

Way to go Jay. Excellent... (Below threshold)
ryan a:

Way to go Jay. Excellent post.

Ah yes, another critical reader. So Frank, what makes you qualify this post as excellent? Do you call something excellent when it merely affirms your views, or are there any other requirements for you?

Don't sell em short. They ... (Below threshold)
moseby:

Don't sell em short. They make good rugs...damn things even fly!!!

ryan a, you must be Muslim ... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

ryan a, you must be Muslim because you feel that we have to quantify our comments and ideas through your prism of this topic. You have a very high opinion of yourself if you think we need to explain our beliefs to the likes of you. You are distracted by the Muslims in our country. They are very different, at least vocally, then those in other countries. If you have a faith that allows you to lie so you can confuse the "enemy" or "infidel" you have a corrupt religion and belief system. ww

Dave,???Averr... (Below threshold)
Jess:

Dave,
???
Averroes was excommunicated by the Almohads - more "radical" or "extreme" Islamacists who invaded Al Andalusia. Catholics had nothing to do with that...
Now, as to "thinkers" being persecuted - I can't help but wonder if the rise of Salafism had more impact - both in the Muslim & "christian" worlds.

J

PS - IMO, many Islamic "Scholars" reputations are ones of perspective - due to time & location, they were able to transcript a great deal of earlier works. Were there others in their place, we would venerate them in similar fashion...

A good while back I had con... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

A good while back I had constructed a comment to direct toward ryan a. But he didn't come back. Now that he's back and I've seen him make a couple more comments I see that his M.O. hasn't changed.

I saved the comment and here it is:

This is what I find in nearly all your comments, ryan a:
Again you are harping on "generalizations". This seems to be the real bee in your bonnet because it's a recurring theme with you here. But never fear there ryan. Because there are an infinite number of statements made here and everywhere else that provide much fodder for your cause to criticize and end any generalizations that you deem inappropriate because there isn't a clear and concise disclaimer included.

Why your ever present insistence that others be careful to include in their commentary each and every exception to each and every rule or circumstance? Don't you think most of us, and particularly Jay, realize that not every Muslim is a terrorist; that not every liberal is unreasonable; that not every environmentalist is a kook; or that not every bicyclist is a bomber?

Why don't you quit insulting our intelligence and speak to the matter without nitpicking someone's words implying they're being somehow dishonest? You spend an inordinate amount of time arguing what shade of blue the sky is and trying to avoid admitting the fact that it is indeed, basically, blue.

Back a few years ago some l... (Below threshold)
Spurwing Plover:

Back a few years ago some liberal doofuses were claiming that moses was a black guy WHAT A LOAD OF POPPYCOCK BIRD POO

One sociopathic, pedophi... (Below threshold)

One sociopathic, pedophilic lunatic took the tenets of Judaism and Christianity and grafted his own psychoses on top of it...


The fatwa calling for Jay Tea's head will be issued in T-minus 5...4...3....

Kidding! (I hope...)

Jess, rulers do wierd thing... (Below threshold)
David:

Jess, rulers do wierd things when under pressure. Yes Ibn Rushd was excommunicated, but in more peaceful times they may have just looked the other way.

Take for example Iran today. There are regime opponents in the Universities and are usually being ignored as they are not a threat to the regime (yes I can name some that are being jailed, but they all "stepped over the line" and Ibn Rushd did not).

Best oxymoron I ever came a... (Below threshold)
PookieJ:

Best oxymoron I ever came across was "adult male."

Islamic thinker isn't an ox... (Below threshold)
Mark L:

Islamic thinker isn't an oxymoron . . .

when it is said by someone who lisps.

Hey Pookie, how about objec... (Below threshold)
epador:

Hey Pookie, how about objective female?

Not bad, epador, and it onl... (Below threshold)
PookieJ:

Not bad, epador, and it only took you 35 minutes to come up with it!

I'll throw in my two cents:... (Below threshold)
Wanderlust:

I'll throw in my two cents:

First .01: Why does Allah need a Jewish weapon (nuclear bomb) when he is supposedly so much superior to the Jews and their God?

Second .01: (that little thingy with Aisha and her playing with dolls at age SIX when she was "married" to Mohammed; ditto for her being made to consummate the marriage at the ripe old age of NINE.

The poster boy for Islamic tolerance was the guy in London whose poster read, "BEHEAD THOSE WHO INSULT ISLAM".

/`nuff said

Oyster,It's true. ... (Below threshold)
ryan a:

Oyster,

It's true. Generalizations, like the ones that form the backbone of this post, do piss me off.

Why you ask? Because the reliance upon a generalized understanding of a subject, such as the intellectual capacities of one billion Muslims across the world, often leads to false conceptions about reality--which is often quite a lot messier than many of us want to admit.

Why your ever present insistence that others be careful to include in their commentary each and every exception to each and every rule or circumstance?

Because it might be possible that a fuller understanding of the multiplicities of reality can be found in the details that run counter to our assumptions. To rephrase that in a less academic and abstract way: Because the details matter. That's why.

Generalizations can be important, and they can hold weight. However Oyster, by writing phrases such as this:

I also don't recall any contributions to the world of knowledge that came from Islam in the last thousand years or so.

...Jay Tea sets himself up for an easy knockdown. Plus, such a claim is, to put it mildly, pure bullshit. NO CONTRIBUTIONS to the world of knowledge in the last 1000 years? All I did was ask him his thoughts about the current US ambassador to the UN, a Muslim, who earlier in his career was also a university professor. And that was just one example. Ipso facto, his argument starts springing leaks. That means he's wrong, Oyster.

How about this one:

Because if there's one Society that is utterly inimical to thought, to debate, to inquisition, to challenging fundamental precepts, to making breakthroughs, it has to be Islam.

Now, I understand that by capitalizing the 'S' in Society Jay was playing on the actual Islamic Thinkers Society that was the source of the post. At the same time though, he was attempting to make a statement about Islam as a whole and all Muslims. In doing that, his reasoning breaks down...which means that his argument once again loses its strength. Again, that means he was wrong. The main problem? "Islam" is not a society. Islam is a religion that multiple societies adhere to. There are multiple forms, multiple manifestations of Islam in multiple societies. There is no such thing as some kind of singular "Islamic" society that we can speak of. There is Islam here in the US, Islam in England, Islam in Morocco, Islam in Iran, Islam in Indonesia. But they are all unique, if sometimes highly historically related, occurrences. But they are not one and the same.

While Jay Tea attempts to characterize "Islam" as some kind of conglomeration of all of the evil aspects of certain practitioners, I am saying that it might be a little more useful to look at things a little more carefully, lest we start throwing in the university students I know who are from Somalia, and who are Muslim, with terrorists from Syria.

Don't you think most of us, and particularly Jay, realize that not every Muslim is a terrorist; that not every liberal is unreasonable; that not every environmentalist is a kook; or that not every bicyclist is a bomber?

I think that some of you realize that, and some don't. When I see things I disagree with, I say something. Isn't that what this whole thing is for anyway? And just so you don't think I am some one-sided troll, I get into these same kinds of arguments on liberal sites as well--hell, sometimes I catch more shit there than anywhere. It's a rough road when you tell a self-proclaimed super liberal that they are being dogmatic...

Anyway, I have read many of your comments Oyster, and I know you're pretty damn thoughtful. All I do around here is call them as I see them. Sometimes I'm around, and sometimes I am too busy to comment. Ya, maybe I am redundant sometimes. But so is all the polemic bullshit that sometimes clogs the internet.

Why don't you quit insulting our intelligence and speak to the matter without nitpicking someone's words implying they're being somehow dishonest?

Why should I quit? Does everybody just come on here to hear themselves in some kind of goddamn echo chamber?

And I was not implying that Jay is dishonest. I was disagreeing with him because I felt he was wrong in what he was saying. In my opinion, if Jay is going to go around making claims like "there has been no contribution to knowledge by Muslims in the past 1000 years," which is patently false, I am going to say something. And bringing up ONE person, such as the current US ambassador, speaks directly to the weak assertion that Jay was trying to put forth.

You spend an inordinate amount of time arguing what shade of blue the sky is and trying to avoid admitting the fact that it is indeed, basically, blue.

That's because, to go with your analogy, the sky isn't basically blue. SOMETIMES it is, but many times it's not. In fact, for about half of the day (or more), the sky is most definitely not blue. Sometimes it's kind of orange, or red. Sometimes it's gray. Other times it's purple. And it also depends at times on which parts you look at...it can be purple on the edges and bluish in the center. As I look out my window right now, it appears to be black.

Much of this, from our perceptions of the color of the sky to our political ideas, is greatly dependent upon our own perspectives. All I am doing is giving mine.

Thanks for the response.



That's because, to go wi... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

That's because, to go with your analogy, the sky isn't basically blue. SOMETIMES it is, but many times it's not.

Pedantic.

Jay,You should con... (Below threshold)
Dave:

Jay,

You should consider joining the KKK(if you are not all ready a member). You would meet many like-minded people.

Mr Nessman,It was ... (Below threshold)
ryan a:

Mr Nessman,

It was a slightly tongue in cheek response to Oyster's analogy...sorry if you find it pedantic.

What would you prefer?

Christians hold Sunday a... (Below threshold)
Clay:

Christians hold Sunday as their holy day, and the Jews Saturday? Why, our holy day is Friday, before theirs!

And we'll build our minarets taller than their churches.

(extensive plagiarism from ... (Below threshold)
Dave:

(extensive plagiarism from here deleted)

The progress in learning ac... (Below threshold)
Dave:

The progress in learning achieved by Arab astronomers and mathematicians ground to a halt when the ability to seek data led conflicted with the strictures of Islam.

The progress in learning achieved by American scientist is being supressed by republicans who pander to the religous right. Restrictions placed on research will mean that within 20 years America will no longer be the leaders in medicine. Other countries will own the patents on major medical advances.

Great article!!!!! Welcome ... (Below threshold)
Adolph:

Great article!!!!! Welcome to the Aryan brotherhood-White Power!

Dave,Your cut 'n' pa... (Below threshold)
Jess:

Dave,
Your cut 'n' past is the equal of the "Kennedy = Lincoln" urban legend.
For example - Kerosene - the oldest surviving written description is from Rhazes, but he's desicribing an already ancient (by then) process. The Chinese developed and used processed bituminous products centuries before, and Rhazes most likely "discovered" this due to trade w/the Orient.

J

PS - From "asphalt"??? YGTBKM. It's asphaltum.

"describing". Need more co... (Below threshold)
Jess:

"describing". Need more coffeee.




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