Sunday, August 17, 2008

Socialist, Satanist, or Creationist? Who's the Craziest, and What that Shows about Our Politics

One of the biggest problems with American politics is that a large segment of the population, has become so certain of their views, and so insulated from differing opinions, that they have lost sight of what is objective and what is subjective in the world. To illustrate, consider the following: who is more insane, the socialist, the satanist, or the creationist?

To many Americans, too many, the answer is that the Satanist is the most insane, the socialist second, and the creationist third. Consider for a moment the reaction when Mike Huckabee spoke of his creationist views in the debates. While many chided him, he had much support among like minded Americans. Were he to have promoted socialism, we can only imagine the outcry, and had he promoted Satanism, it would have been even worse. Ken Ham's creationist museum has been a great commercial success. There is nothing similar for Satanism or socialism.

This is completely backwards. Clearly the least reasonable of the three positions is creationism, because it violates demonstrable facts. The earth is not 6,000 years old, nor did all life appear fully formed all at once. This is consistent with all of the evidence. After that would come Satanism, a position that makes assumptions not supported by the evidence, but not contradicted by them either. Satan, like the gods, defies attempts at double-blind experiment. Finally, socialism is clearly the most reasonable of the three. History certainly has not been kind to completely socialist governments, but some aspects of socialism, such as public services, health care, and the military, have proven competitive, if not superior, to free market solutions.

This is the problem with American politics today. Politics and religion, inherently subjective subjects, are treated as objective truths not to be questioned, and science is treated as no more objective than taste in films. It's small wonder we can't solve any of our serious problems.

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