Sunday, August 31, 2008

Vice and the Democratic Pary

“We all recognize law as a general benefactor, savior, guardian of our lives, and so forth, because it does away with vice and fosters virtue, and because it makes men think that they ought to honor virtue and punish wrongdoers.”

--Thomas Magistros, On the Duty of a King, late thirteenth century

(quote taken from a terrific book, Byzantium: The Surprising Life of Medieval Empire by Judith Herrin)

The following is from Sunday Morning Sermons with His Grace, Volume1:

How far we have come from this kind of moral understanding of law when compared to the accursed “positive” of American law, which simply means that all law is self-referential with no adherence to either transcendental values or morality? The Hippocratic Oath, for example, which all doctors take, prohibits abortion. Does anybody pay attention to this contractual obligation? Of course not: it is trumped by the imaginary right to kill your own children. Now there are certainly things that should be positive such as business contract law but criminal law needs to get hooked up to some sort of value system other than itself. It was legal in Germany, for example, to kill Jews. So the law can never be left solely to the mutual or contractual consent of the people or government. I am also reminded of Cromwell’s bounty price of equating the head of priest with that of a wolf.

The OJification of America continues… I know a top notch criminal lawyer, for example, who works death penalty cases. His client (a Puerto Rican drug lord) was videotaped kicking the head of someone his organization “offed.” He was using the head as a soccer ball. He got off on a technicality, which in turn is simply based on “positive” interpretations of procedure—pure nonsense in this case. The lawyer’s intent (he told me this) was not to get the client off the hook but simply to get him off the death penalty, which he opposes. The judge with his head up his legal ass thought otherwise. Imagine letting someone off the hook who was videotaped kicking someone’s head around like a soccer ball on a technicality.

I have always maintained that many of America’s moral and criminal problems stem from a failure to use virtue and vice (in the Aristotelian sense) as a schema for interpreting behavior instead of this “left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing, decoupling of cause and effect” that the left is famous for. You see it does depend on what you mean by “is.”

Homosexuals, for example, insist that their natural attraction is the same (only different) than male/female. What they forget is that masturbation is a homosexual act—ya doing it with the same sex. In this sense everyone is a homosexual. As the appalling Gore Vidal quipped, “if you are bisexual, your chances of getting a date are doubled”. Approval of masturbation is the root of all evil to my mind because once that is considered normal then sex simply becomes a toilet function—and really why would it matter who you do it with? it is just a personal preference. Resistance to the sexual impulse is something that most true conservatives understand as being morally necessary (even if they hypocritically indulge on the sly) in order to resist other bad impulses and behave in accordance with Divine law as they may know it. All unexamined impulses seen to have found a home in the Democratic Party. Abortion is just a clean-up procedure.

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