Friday, June 5, 2009

Two phrases from Obama's Egypt speech; what do you think of them?

Mr. Obama said these two sentences in his speech in Cairo.

"And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear." (Do YOU know anybody who voted for a president who considers protecting Islam part of the JOB? I'd sure love for him to say that about Christianity and Judaism in OUR country!! Wouldn't you?)

"So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed." ("revealed" ..what a very Islamic way to put it)

My good buddy Susannah at Get the Big Picture Blog has a good post on the speech singling out other very interesting points, check it out. But, I remembered, as I listened, that the two lines above REALLY made me think..."WHAT?"

118 comments:

Ducky's here said...

"So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed." ("revealed" ..what a very Islamic way to put it)

------------------------------

You don't believe the Bible is revealed truth?

All Abrahamic religions are based on revealed truth.

Ducky's here said...

(Do YOU know anybody who voted for a president who considers protecting Islam part of the JOB? I'd sure love for him to say that about Christianity and Judaism in OUR country!! Wouldn't you?)

-----------------------------

Straw man. Anyway it would be impossible to count the number of times it's been said about Judaism.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Mr. Obama said these two sentences in his speech in Cairo.

"And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear." (Do YOU know anybody who voted for a president who considers protecting Islam part of the JOB?)"

Allow me to help you understand what the president was saying: We live in a country where many religions are tolerated, including Islam. His oath of office mandates that he protects and preserves the Constitution, which guarantees freedom of religion and equal protection.

There are groups of people within this country who advocate hatred and violence against Muslims because of the actions of the extremists within their religion.

(There are terrorist extremists withing the Christian religion--one of them just committed murder against a medical doctor this past week.)

Because of his Oath of Office, Mr. Obama must protect ALL American citizens, including Muslims, from those who wish them harm.

The majority of American Muslims are peaceful, law-abiding citizens.

AS a national and international leader, it is morally responsible for the president to fight against negative stereotypes of ALL religions.

Would you have objected to Mr. Obama's words had he said this:

"And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Christianity wherever they appear."

or:

"And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Judaism wherever they appear."


Why are you upset over Mr. Obama's humane and perfectly reasonable wish to do away with negative stereotypes of Islam?

Even George W. Bush proclaimed to America and the world that Islam was a religion of peace.

Were you upset when that American president stated that?

As to experiencing Islam on three continents--as a child, Mr. Obama lived in a Muslim country, Indonesia, he also visited his biological father's native country, in which many Muslims live, and he has worked with Muslims in his own country, while working as a community organizer in Chicago.

What is your problem with his stating facts?

As a Christian, I once experienced Christianity on three countries:

I experienced it in Europe, where my parents were born, in South America, where I visited, and here in the United States, where I was born and raised.

You seem to have a very big problem with anything having to do with Islam.

Not too long ago in this country people had "problems" with people of African descent, and with people who followed the Jewish faith.

There's no difference between those who held those prejudices then, and what appears to be your prejudices now.

Z said...

Christians don't say Islam was REVEALED, Ducky. He IS a Christian, isn't he? He says he is, after all.
Yes, I certainly do believe the Bible is revealed truth, from "the one true God", as a matter of fact.

Ducky, you make some sense, American presidents have, until obama, been very pro Israel, but I'm not sure I've heard one say that part of his job was to protect Jews around the world... Link it, I'd like to see some.

Has any president used "Shalom"? Maybe. It's the oddest thing, but the two links I've tried, or three, I think, the text is English...it doesn't print the Arabic words Obama used. Very odd, it's not like people don't know what they mean so they needed translation. hm

Always On Watch said...

BHO: "And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear."

Too back he doesn't, at least once in a while, substitue the word "Americanism" for "Islam."

Instead, he prefers to apologize for America.

As for the word "revealed," well, it indicates that BHO believes that MTP actually believes that Islam is a "true faith."

Z said...

Shaw.... what?
No, I have nothing against muslims, at least not those who don't want us dead. I had a little problem with Congressman Ellison yesterday on CNN denying to Ayaan Hirsi Ali that the Koran absolutely has no violent push for jihad, THAT bugged me, it should you, too. The minute she quoted scripture, he backed down. As IF he hadn't known?

My point is simple: I just ask how it's part of an American president's JOB to protect Islam? Seemed odd to me.

Z said...

YOu know, Always, good point....it's one thing to protect all faiths..FINE...but when more than half of this country's a little bit tired of his apology tours, that kind of statement stands out.

I was so relieved he didn't go to Dresden and apologize for WWII ! (heh)

beamish said...

Shaw Kenawe,

During the 2008 campaign, people were vilified as smear artists for merely mentioning Obama's middle name or pointing out his Islamic family ties.

Obama was ashamed of his Islam heritage when he was trying to get elected.

Did he learn to be proud of his Islamic heritage after he was elected?

What does the "Obama Truth Squad" have to say about Muammar Qadafi of Libya and the Turkish Parliament declaring that Obama is a Muslim? Are they going to sue to shut them up?

Ducky's here said...

Christians don't say Islam was REVEALED, Ducky. He IS a Christian, isn't he? He says he is, after all.
Yes, I certainly do believe the Bible is revealed truth, from "the one true God", as a matter of fact.

---------------------------

Who are you to speak for all Christians? Or do you feel as if you determine who is a Christian?

Fact is the Muslims believe their faith was revealed. Obama has made it his task to try to get on speaking terms with parts of the Muslim world.
Did you expect him to do that by getting up and saying "Convert or die, ragheads."

beamish said...

Obama has made it his task to try to get on speaking terms with parts of the Muslim world.
Did you expect him to do that by getting up and saying "Convert or die, ragheads."


What parts of the Muslim world are we not on "speaking terms" with?

Which side of the UAE Dubai ports deal debate did you fall on?

Is Egypt not happy with their annual Camp David accord payments from the United States?

Is Turkey now unwelcome in NATO?

Should Saudi Arabia and Jordan give us back the Abrams tanks we sell them?

Was Indonesia offended by our tsunami relief humanitarian aid?

Let me get to the point, Ducky.

Is your imbecility inexhaustible?

Ducky's here said...

Well beamish it's like this. We are perceived as aggressors in the service of corrupt oligarchs.

We aren't seen as a force for change in the Muslim world (especially the Arab world). Don't give me this nonsense about "liberating" Iraq and Afghanistan.
Are we talking to Iran, a critical Muslim state?

"Is Egypt not happy with their annual Camp David accord payments from the United States?"
Yeah, we give a dictator money to buy arms and maintain power. Not as big a welfare check as we give Israel but a nice one. Do you think this gives us much cred with Arab moderates and progressives? Are you insane?

So we sell arms to maintain the status quo. Man, you are just out there clueless.

Ducky's here said...

Beamish, are you under the assumption that we are not trying to figure a way to get out of Iraq and Afghanistan?

Do you think it's possible to do that without cooperation from Iran and Syria? Or do you enjoy the status quo?

FrogBurger said...

Ducky is like a parasite. His sole goal is to make us angry. The last post he implicitly suggested I said it was a good thing the police was trained so they can beat up Algerians.

Typical left tactics. Talk out of their rear end, ridicule you and then question why you're angry at them.

beamish said...

Ducky,

It's not just arms. Food and medicine too.

Did only "corrupt oligarchs" recieve American humanitarian assistance in the wake of the tsunami that struck Indonesia?

When USAID grain deliveries reach East African nations, are we somehow secretly feeding Muslims we hate?

I could go on, but let's give you time to find those countries in your coloring book.


Are we talking to Iran, a critical Muslim state?

What makes the state sponsor of terrorism Iran critical?

Yeah, we give a dictator money to buy arms and maintain power. Not as big a welfare check as we give Israel but a nice one. Do you think this gives us much cred with Arab moderates and progressives?

What Arab moderates and progressives?

As for what you call "welfare checks," what Israel recieves doesn't even come close to what the Islamic world as a whole recieves via USAID and IMF assistance from the United States.

You named Iran as an Islamic nation we're not on "speaking terms" with.

Is that all you have?

Thought so.

Mustang said...

We aren't seen as a force for change in the Muslim world (especially the Arab world).

Why don’t you explain this to us, Ducky?

beamish said...

Beamish, are you under the assumption that we are not trying to figure a way to get out of Iraq and Afghanistan?

I'm pretty sure we'll use the same roads and airports we entered Iraq and Afghanistan from.

Do you think it's possible to do that without cooperation from Iran and Syria? Or do you enjoy the status quo?

The only cooperation from Iran and Syria we need is for them to stop sponsoring terrorism.

Iraq and Iran seem to have warmer relations now. That's not exactly "status quo."

Karbala and Najaf in Iraq are the two holiest cities in Shia Islam - rendering the mullahs of Qom, Iran rather impotent.

But you're wanting Baathists from Syria and theological usurpers in Iran to cooperate in and with Iraq.

Again, in all seriousness, is your imbecility inexhaustible?

Bloviating Zeppelin said...

Ducky: "a force for change in the Muslim world"?

Change? CHANGE?? Of what "change" are you referring?? Islam, the religion of persons who haven't "changed" and REFUSE to "change" in hundreds and hundreds of years? The religion that embraces racist and sexist teachings and practices -- not just in the past but NOW? The religion that finds it so much EASIER to DESTROY than to BUILD?

Here's my suggestion, sir: YOU go to a predominantly Islamic country and YOU get them to "change."

Good damned luck.

The ONLY change Islam predominantly wishes is to have YOU genuflecting towards Mecca five times daily.

BZ

Larry Durham said...

Great catch Z, that line : Just how far will Barry go to protect Islam? Maybe that'll be one of the functions of the Obama Civil Patrol. Door to door hunting down Islamaphobes.

I jest...but not much.

Islam revealed? Yep, somebody moved a slimy rock and...voila! There it was!

Anonymous said...

"Would you have objected to Mr. Obama's words had he said this:

"And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Christianity wherever they appear."

or:

"And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Judaism wherever they appear.""

Shaw - actually, I wouldn't object at all if he would have made these statements. I can't think of a more appropriate place to make them, seeing as how these two groups of "infidels" are, under Islamic belief, considered worthy of killing.


Islamists, in every country to which they have migrated demand special exceptions in law and cultural practices of their host countries so as to satisfy Islamist customs and religious practices.

Since 9-11 they have done this in the US as well. In public schools, airports, even in markets where they have a problem with the sale of pork.

As we speak, Sharia compliant finance is observed and has been accepted by some of our biggest financial institutions.

In Europe, the problem is worse because their numbers are a larger percentage of the population.

You see, terrorism isn't the only problem. The threat of terrorism is used for Islamists to hold sway with the indigenous populations and their governments.

So, as far as I'm concerned the muslim community is a problem, because they have a problem abiding with their host country's laws and tolerating the host country's customs and cultural traditions.

Meanwhile, our President is appealing to the mulim world to forgive the USA for being who we are. Not exactly representing the American people. We have nothing to apologize for, except having elected Obama in the first place.

Pris

Papa Frank said...

I would also like to mention that Israel is one of an amazingly short list of countries that actually pays back its debt to the US. I will NEVER kiss the posterior of the religion that cheers our troubles and seeks our demise as our chump-in-chief spent all week doing. This is not because I am a Christian and have a problem with another religion but rather because I am an American and will not tolerate those who hate us and seek to destroy us OR those who keep people like that in their midst and don't condemn them and deal with them accordingly. If Islam rises up and expels those who teach AND practice hate and destruction then I will gladly look on them as a religion and not a war machine.

Always On Watch said...

Z,
What's going on with David Horowitz these days? The essay is entitled "An American Leader Stands up for His Country." Oh, really?

Z said...

Ducky? "Who are you to speak for all Christians? Or do you feel as if you determine who is a Christian?"
Ever seem me do that? WOW. No.
PLEASE, I keep asking you to read what I write before you critique only what you find easy to slam.
I thought his speech was fine, in many ways, I don't find the two phrases I pinpointed fine..
I'm sure you were great with all of it, huh? THE HERO SPOKE..DUCKY LISTENS.
"I believe", by the way, is not speaking for all Christians:-)

Thanks for all the good comments, everyone.

Larry...how's about a guy who speaks up for US sometimes, this country 85% of whom DO identify as Christians? naa...we elected a guy who feels it's 'his job to be there for islam'. Well, just wondered WHY and who gave him that impression?
We protect ALL faiths in America and I'm ALL OVER THAT. Do I feel we need to go to bat around the world for any but ours? Nope.
The left's the bunch who hates us intervening anywhere yet we're struck by muslim extremists and now we're going around the world, "part of our president's JOB" to protect islam!!? WHY?

Any country that's THIS multicultural is not a country...terribly porous borders, the ignore-ance of the 2 main faiths of our country to the extent that a kid can't bring the Bible to 'show and tell' (in the news today), no national language..

Yet, we're busy protecting other faiths?

Z said...

Always, David Horowitz has gone so far from his roots that I believe that's why FPM's commenting is down, quite literally, about 80%. I check from time to time, and there'll be six comments on the top article these days. Compared to more than a hundred in the past.

I must say I don't think obama was ALL wrong in his speech and I talk about that in my post on the speech, below this one 2 posts, I think....but for Horowitz to write this stuff? WEIRD. He also wrote another glowing Obama thing about 3 months ago; people aren't taking him seriously anymore

Z said...

Papa Frank..you said "If Islam rises up and expels those who teach AND practice hate and destruction then I will gladly look on them as a religion and not a war machine".

Me, too. I keep HOPING and WAITING for the 7 million muslims in America (and the others around the world for that matter)Obama thinks are here in America (contrary to highest estimates of MAX 6 million, probably more like 3) to say "WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH and WE WANT TO LIVE PEACEFULLY AMONG OUR CHRISTIAN AND JEWISH BROTHERS AND SISTERS!"

BUT, the "HOly Koran", as Obama put it 3 or 4 times, doesn't allow that. Yet, I KNOW WITH CERTITUDE there are MILLIONS OF MUSLIMS who do want just that.... Maybe they're too threatened to speak out. It's why so many are turning to Christianity; they like the thought that they are free in the love promised them in the New Testament.
Sadly, they can't speak out about their conversions, or they're toast.

Always On Watch said...

Z,
Mr. Horowitz's daughter, who passed away some time back, was a supporter of BHO. I wonder if his daughter's passing and her support of BHO have anything to do with Mr. Horowitz's having gone soft on BHO. He seems to think that much criticism of BHO is nothing more that Obama Derangement Syndrome.

Z said...

Always, imagine a good conservative thinking that? It's like thinking Powell's a good conservative when he voted for a man like obama.

The piece Horowitz wrote about his daughter was stunningly beautiful....and yes, she was a liberal. I can't imagine a man of integrity switching so completely his values, but you never know.

RightKlik said...

"And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear."

Sorry Obama, you're the POTUS. You don't have time to the be the world's stereotype police officer.

"So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed."

I thought quite a bit about his use of the word "revealed" and I found it quite peculiar for someone who claims to be a Christian. Is he talking about Allah revealing Islam to "the prophet" or "the prophet" revealing Islam to the world?

RightKlik said...

Shaw Kenawe: "Because of his Oath of Office, Mr. Obama must protect ALL American citizens, including Muslims, from those who wish them harm"

Is this the Obama who is trampling the Constitution, or are we talking about another Mr. Obama?

Papa Frank said...

Z -- what you have touched on here is another grim reality of Islam. With as much war as they wage on free peoples we tend to forget that as hard as they are on us they are 100 times harder on their own families. Intolerance and death is what awaits those who wish to leave the "religion of peace" at the hands of their closest relatives.

RightKlik said...

Shaw: "Because of his Oath of Office, Mr. Obama must protect ALL American citizens, including Muslims, from those who wish them harm."

Obama's approch is slanted. Carefully considier, for example, the following:

After two days of silence, President Obama issued a statement Wednesday on the shooting of two U.S. soldiers by a Muslim militant in Arkansas--but the White House didn't even email the statement to its list of national reporters. Rather, the White House appears to have quietly released this statement to a local AP bureau in Arkansas:


“I am deeply saddened by this senseless act of violence against two brave young soldiers who were doing their part to strengthen our armed forces and keep our country safe. I would like to wish Quinton Ezeagwula a speedy recovery, and to offer my condolences and prayers to William Long’s family as they mourn the loss of their son.”


In contrast, the White House blasted a statement to reporters via email about five hours after news broke that third-trimester abortionist George Tiller was murdered on Sunday:


I am shocked and outraged by the murder of Dr. George Tiller as he attended church services this morning. However profound our differences as Americans over difficult issues such as abortion, they cannot be resolved by heinous acts of violence.


The contrast between Obama's statements is striking: He's "deeply saddened" by the murder of a U.S. soldier, but "shocked and outraged" by the murder of an abortionist? The murder of a U.S. soldier is a "senseless" act of violence but the murder of an abortionist is a "heinous" act of violence?

Obama musters up moral outrage to denounce the wicked deed committed in Kansas, but seems almost resigned to the tragedy or "man-caused disaster" that occurred in Arkansas.

Why the different treatment of the two acts of terrorism?


When a right-wing Christian vigilante kills, millions of fingers pull the trigger. When a left-wing Muslim vigilante kills, he kills alone. These are the instantly ossifying narratives in the Sunday shooting death of Kansas late-term abortionist George Tiller versus the Monday shootings of two Arkansas military recruiters.

Tiller’s suspected murderer, Scott Roeder, was white, Christian, anti-government, and anti-abortion. The gunman in the military recruiting center attack, Abdul Hakim Mujahid Muhammad, was black, a Muslim convert, anti-military, and anti-American. Both crimes are despicable, cowardly acts of domestic terrorism. But the disparate treatment of the two brutal cases by both the White House and the media is striking.
(via the Weekly Standard)

Shaw if you harbor one ounce of objectivity, you will admit (at least to yourself) that conservatives' concerns about Obama's comittment to fairness are legitimate.

Z said...

Right, Pops, you're so right.

RightKlik..WOW, and thanks for this, I really appreciate your comments. The "reveal" word was so 'revealing', let's face it. Put it together with the '57 American states' (when it's 57 Islamic states) and his schooling in Indonesia and disparaging anyone for using his middle name until the election, and you really wonder, don't you.

Too bad Michelle Obama couldn't stay with him to go to the muslim countries on his last trip, going home early, and too bad she had to join him after his muslim country visit and now's with him in France.

Northwest Minuteman said...

Great blog!! Another one you might enjoy:

www.freedoms-fight.blogspot.com

psi bond said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Z said...

Psi Bond, no, obviously many 'sensible voters' disagree with you.
That you can't see it is one of the reasons America is failing.

Z said...

from the koran :

[5.51] O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people.

I wonder if THE ONE can counteract this?

beamish said...

PsiBond,

Sensible voters undoubtedly believe protecting the national interest is a vital part of the president's job. It is in the national interest to not give the Islamic world reason to believe the U.S. is engaged in waging a war against Islam. It facilitates militant Muslim fundamentalists looking for recruits if negative stereotypes of Islam are allowed to appear and spread in this country unchallenged by the official policy of the administration. Hence it is a part of the president's responsibility to fight against these stereotypes.

From my examples above (Indonesian tsunami relief, USAID food shipments to East Africa, Turkey as a member of NATO, Dubai considered for port contracts in the US, weapons sold to Jordan and Saudi Arabia, etc.) who could concoct the idea that we're at war with Islam?

And how is a relentless idiot like Obama who thinks we need Arabic translators in Afghanistan, and an imbecile "foreign policy expert" like Biden who thinks we should give Persians in Iran money so Arabs don't think we're going to nuke them off the planet going to change that perception?

Z said...

beamish, thanks..it's a reminder of those things which our president can't bring himself to mention. And, one would think that was so obvious to people who want to understand the truth, not leftists or the muslim street, apparently.

It's as silly as anyone thinking Israel's very existence is not what's rubbing muslims so wrong. As if another peace agreement will work. so naive.

Deborah on the Bayside said...

How do you properly fight negative stereotypes? With one weapon only -- facts in context. So yes, I expect the president to be factual and contextual. But is that a responsibility -- or a character issue?

Too bad it's not a skill Mr. Obama appears to be acquainted with.

His egregious comments in this same speech making the largely self-inflicted sufferings of the "Palestinians" equivalent to centuries of brutal pogroms against Jews and the Nazi holocaust are a case in point. He's like those who wring their hands and cry "stop the violence" without distinguishing offender from defender. After all, that might be, uh judgmental. And we couldn't have any of that, could we?

No, there's no call to antagonize, but you don't "fight" the negativity of a dirty house by sweeping the dirt under the rug then calling the house clean.

beamish said...

Z,

Obama didn't say "Death to Israel" so I don't think his pandering went as far as it could have.

That said, Sunnis don't want Shia having nukes either.

Anonymous said...

Actually yes, I am bothered my Mr. Obama's sentence about him personally as president of USA to be on this perpetual goodwill tour for Islam.


I have nothing against religions, but to say such a thing is off the wall.

And out of place .

Now consider one from that religion that Mr. Obama wants to defend has actually gone and murdered one of Obama's own troops. A troop who has sworn to uphold the constitution and defend his country and commander in chief.

Tell you what, I find Mr. Obama's comments WAY , WAY out of line.

SOunds like he is telling me he has a rather hefty agenda , and will use the office of the presidency to do what he can for a select group.

And that , my friends, is so not cool.

WVDOTTR

beamish said...

PsiBond,

My question to you was tangential to your response to Z. I asked where the crazy idea that "we're at war with Islam" comes from, and how imbeciles like Obama and Biden plan to counter that crazy idea. Along with not mentioning the intervention in Kosovo, there are several other examples of the United States assisting Muslims with humanitarian aid and protecting them with military force that I didn't mention. I didn't mention our earthquake disaster relief to Iranians, or the more obvious examples of removing the Baath Party from power in Iraq and knocking the Taliban out of control of Afghanistan. I could go on all day with examples. I didn't think it was necessary to belabor the point that the idea that "we're at war with Islam" is ludicrous.

You correctly answered the first question - the idea that we're at war with Islam comes from "Cock-eyed concocting militant Muslim fundamentalists looking for converts to destroy America."

You dodged my follow-up question on how Obama [who believes Arabic translators are needed in Afghanistan] and Biden [who believes giving money to Persians will stop Arabs from thinking America is going to nuke Arabs off the face of the Earth] will counter the perception of "cock-eyed concocting militant Muslim fundamentalists looking for converts to destroy America."

The Biden sentiment comes from Biden's reaction to the 9/11 attacks as reported in The New Republic, in October 2001. The last six paragraphs of that linked article will deliver the knock down that the first half of the article sets up.

Shortly after the 9/11 attacks, Biden was in a Senate Foreign relations committee suggesting a no-strings attached $200 million payment to Iran to "show the Arab world that we're not bent on its destruction."

That Democrats tout Biden as a "foriegn policy expert" is nothing more to me than another example among near infinite ways to show that leftists are, without exception, all imbeciles.

Let's go back to the question I posed.

If America's long history of humanitarian assistance and military intervention on the behalf of Muslims all over the Islamic world does not dispel the idea that we're "at war with Islam" among the militant elements of the Islamic faith, how is the Obama that knows more about stapling flyers to telephone poles than basic political geography going to change that? How is the "foreign policy expert" Biden that can't tell the difference between Shia Persians and Sunni Arabs to the point that he "gropes" at giving $200 million dollars to a state sponsor of terrorism within a month of the 9/11 attacks going to change that?

The easy answer for you should have been, "Well Beamish, Obama and Biden seem pretty clueless. The idea that Biden is a 'foreign policy expert' particularly makes me nearly piss myself with laughter."

But, since you want to dig in your heels on the absurd idea that Obama and Biden aren't imbeciles, do please tell me how to have the confidence in them that you do.

Z said...

beamish, that $200 mill thing was so blatantly stupid I've always thought it was a myth, but the more I check, the more I see it isn't.....

Poor America.....we get attacked and we have to keep apologizing for it.....why's the left so bent on believing America can't do ANYTHING right? It's about time Islam started apologizing to us.

beamish said...

Z,

As you know, my own little sister is a post-9/11 convert to Islam now living in Egypt teaching English to schoolchildren.

I really don't think it's possible for the whole of Islam to "apologize to America" in any meaningful way - certainly not while there is implicit [and explicit] support for para-national terrorist groups wedded to the policies of certain governments within the Islamic world.

That "foreign policy expert" Biden thought a $200 million payoff to one of those terror-sponsoring governments a viable response to 9/11, much less that he thinks Iran is an Arab country, doesn't inspire confidence that our current leaders could find their own asses with both hands.

On PsiBond and the deleted posts he'll inevitably re-post, I would have liked to responded to his foray into Google theology with my usual pith and concision. I suppose I can wait until they re-appear.

mksviews said...

"I'd sure love for him to say that about Christianity and Judaism in OUR country!! Wouldn't you?"

I would Z, but we both know he won't and that is his true nature. What we conservatives were saying about him during the campaign is turning out to be true, too bad it's too late now.

Z said...

MK, I have a relative who I don't think voted for THE ONE (he's a successful businessman who has given literally millions to church and a university nearby and knows business...he saw what could come).....but he did, last time we saw him about 2 months ago, say he was hoping to see some good come out of obama and we should "give him a chance."

We saw him yesterday...Mr. Z said "You still think we need to give him a chance?" The relative went into a diatribe about how awful things are going and I can't really repeat what he said here.....he's totally awakened and seen the damage and thinks it'll be irreversible. I trust this relative's acumen SO much that it really haunts me now... Even I'd held out a smidgeon of hope.

Beamish...I know the 'whole muslim world' can't AND WON'T apologize because strength is EVERYTHING to them, particularly the Arab muslims (which is why our appeasement and apology tours have to stop; you can't judge their mentality or compare it to our sycophantic leftist media...the chris matthews and olbermanns of the world seem to honestly think EVERYBODY'S NICE..oh, MAN)...BUT, there ARE good muslims in this country who i know want to live here by OUR RULES and the only thing I see THEM doing, and only a bit, is speaking out reminding Americans they appreciate America and how safe their religion really is. That's not quite cutting it.
A "we didn't do 9/11, but we know that our extremists DID and we're working toward showing you that we do NOT agree with that, and want to show Americans we're safe....we don't feel it's up to America to understand US, we're in YOUR COUNTRY now."

but, alas.

beamish said...

Z,

I don't think singling out Arab Muslims from the whole of Islam is particularly more useful than singling out any other ethnicity within the Islamic faith.

Of the 21 major ongoing conflicts, wars, and insurgencies currently plaguing our planet, Muslim groups or governments that tout themselves as Islamic are the belligerent parties in 15 of them.

Of the organizations designated as terrorist groups by the various nations in the world, the overwhelming majority of them are Islamic militants.

People claiming to be adherents of a "religion of peace" from all nationalities are active participants on one side or both of 71% of the world's current bloodiest fights.

Obama missed a opportunity to show up for America in the Islamic world and point out the obvious.

The approach he should have taken would have called out nations in the Islamic world by name and walked through each of America's grievances with them - not to open dialogue with them so much as rather re-affirm the principles of Westphalian sovereignty which form the basis of international law. We deal with governments, not terrorists.

And he should have outlined the reasons some Islamic governments are specifically designated by the US State Department as state sponsors of terrorism, and called on them to change.

Whether it would have played well in the Islamic world or not shouldn't have been the point. He should have been there to make a case against the elephant in the room - Islamic extremism and terrorism sponsored by Islamic governments - rather than dance around it and making cheap pop (and historically imprecise) remarks about how Islam "created Algebra." (By the same goofy and nebulous formulation, Christianity gave us Kentucky Fried Chicken.)

Deborah on the Bayside said...

>>>>>>NEWS FLASH!!
Thomas Jefferson and the koran? Ouch! Why did you pick THAT example Mr. President? Your ignorance, or theirs?

Another problem in this speech was OBH's reference to Thomas Jefferson keeping the holy koran in his library. His context inferred TJ had some sort of admiration/respect for Islam. Actually, Mr. Jefferson had a koran in his library much as I might have Das Kapital in mine - for warning, not approval.

OBH does have trouble keeping facts in context -- an especial boo-boo since this one is so freshly uncovered precisely from the recent election of the Muslim congressman he cites!

Deborah on the Bayside said...

BACKGROUND -- I should flesh out the depth of my last post above.

I would have hoped OBH's scant grasp of foreign affairs would at least have included the awareness that TJ was also the envoy who tried - without success - to form a coalition of the willing in Europe to squelch the Barbary pirates who were housed, supported and protected by Islamic states.

His ultimate ascendancy over them, with the British, is detailed well in Christopher Hitchens' excellent article for City Journal, spring 2007. Hitchens demonstrates how this same Mr. Jefferson's leading the nation's confrontation with the Islamic states helped forge our character.

Coming full circle on this, it quite likely also informed Mr. Jefferson's desire to place the holy koran in his library -- as a warning.

Z said...

Deborah, Muslim Congressman Keith Ellison bald facedly LIED the other night as he debated Ayan Hirsi Ali, saying the koran has no text about forcing others to become muslim, by force if necessary...
she sited scripture and he had to shut up and resort to "Well, the BIBLE has bad stuff in it, too" It was the typical leftist blather.....
Until she reminded him that Christians don't ENCOURAGE that type of thing.

It was so telling...An American congressman muslim who doesn't know, or doesn't WANT KNOWN the parts of the koran which his extremist brethren live by.

beamish said...

Someone should ask Obama if Diophantus of Alexandria was a Muslim.

psi bond said...

No, folks, appearances notwithstanding, Z and beamish are not concocting a few quotes for me and then talking among themselves about them

Since the blog administrator has deleted the four of my posts that are discussed while preserving the responses to them, I repost them below in order to restore intelligibility to the thread and for the sake of fairness and truth.

Thanks are unnecessary.

psi bond said...

Z: Mr. Obama said these two sentences in his speech in Cairo.

"And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear." (Do YOU know anybody who voted for a president who considers protecting Islam part of the JOB? I'd sure love for him to say that about Christianity and Judaism in OUR country!! Wouldn't you?
)





Sensible voters undoubtedly believe protecting the national interest is a vital part of the president's job. It is in the national interest to not give the Islamic world reason to believe the U.S. is engaged in waging a war against Islam. It facilitates militant Muslim fundamentalists looking for recruits if negative stereotypes of Islam are allowed to appear and spread in this country unchallenged by the official policy of the administration. Hence it is a part of the president's responsibility to fight against these stereotypes.





"So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed." ("revealed" ..what a very Islamic way to put it)





It is a respectful and diplomatic way of speaking. Respect for the religion of Islam, no less than respect for other religions, is in the interests of the U.S. In a speech in Cairo, for the President to say "the region where Islam was invented (or concocted)" would be, to understate it, not an ingenious idea for a new approach to old problems. No more than it would be to say in Jerusalem, "the Holy Land where the undying legend of the Son of God was embroidered (or fabricated)." The logic for not doing so should be self-evident.

Originally posted June 6, 2009 3:59 AM

psi bond said...

Psi Bond, no, obviously many 'sensible voters' disagree with you.
That you can't see it is one of the reasons America is failing
.

Sorry, Z, but you are failing to make good sense. To reiterate, my truism regarding sensible voters was this: Of course, sensible voters consider protecting the national interest an important part of the president's job (and launching a war on Islam is contrary to all sensible U.S. interests). That you can link that incontestable statement with your preconceived conclusion that "America is failing", seeing only what you are determined to see, may be one of the reasons the GOP is losing support.

Although a lot of the rightwing blogosphere is blasting Obama's speech, O'Reilly said on Friday that the speech was "a big success". And David Horowitz sensibly wrote that conservatives would be making a great mistake to "treat it as another round in the partisan food fight". Unfortunately, Z, I am the one who has to say this: America may be failing in your eyes, but, fortunately, levelheaded Americans are not fatalistic and apocalyptic like you.

psi bond said...

From my examples above (Indonesian tsunami relief, USAID food shipments to East Africa, Turkey as a member of NATO, Dubai considered for port contracts in the US, weapons sold to Jordan and Saudi Arabia, etc.) who could concoct the idea that we're at war with Islam?

Cock-eyed concocting militant Muslim fundamentalists looking for converts to destroy America---that's who, beamish. Such fanatics would no doubt argue that the "examples" you choose to emphasize---Indonesian tsunami relief, USAID food shipments to East Africa, Turkey as a member of NATO, Dubai considered for port contracts in the US [rejected by public outcry in the U.S.], weapons sold to Jordan and Saudi Arabia, and (one you failed to cite, which happens to be one that rightwingers formerly opposed but now cite) protecting the Albanian Muslims in Kosovo from ethnic cleansing---all these trumpeted acts of good will are mere deceptions that cannot conceal what they are determined to see as the West's satanic jihad to destroy the Islamic world.

And how is a relentless idiot like Obama who thinks we need Arabic translators in Afghanistan, and an imbecile "foreign policy expert" like Biden who thinks we should give Persians in Iran money so Arabs don't think we're going to nuke them off the planet going to change that perception?

Ummmmmm, beamish, you do not address anything I said. Relentlessly once again, you go spinning off on an imbecilic rant that wildly distorts God knows what that your bogeyman Biden said, in order to try to make some point that you and Z misguidedly believe is coherent. However, it has no bearing on my straightforward answers to the questions posed by Z.

psi bond said...

beamish: My question to you was tangential to your response to Z.

Your question was off the subject, a change of subject. Of the two answers to Z's questions about Obama's Cairo speech, you quoted one. If you can't address that one, say so. You need to use not tangents to the subject, but secants cutting into the subject.

I asked where the crazy idea that "we're at war with Islam" comes from,

It comes from and is promoted by crazy rightwingers. They believe the proper answer to 9/11 is to attack not militant Muslims but Muslims wherever they are found.The notion is sufficiently prevalent in this country that Obama considered it necessary to distance himself from it and strongly declare in his Cairo speech that the United States is not at war with Islam and (what's more) never will be. Obama understands, more than his predecessor, that this is not a war than can be won militarily, but only ideologically.

and how imbeciles like Obama and Biden plan to counter that crazy idea.

I cannot speak for the administration's plan, but it is clear that Obama intends to take the strategic step of starting a new dialogue with the Middle East over the next several years by (among many other things) making it understood that a war with Islam is not in the cards, not under consideration.

Do you think, beamish, that, instead of making calibrated speeches in foreign capitals, he should be confronting the Islamic world with the full force of the U.S. military?

Along with not mentioning the intervention in Kosovo, there are several other examples of the United States assisting Muslims with humanitarian aid and protecting them with military force that I didn't mention. I didn't mention our earthquake disaster relief to Iranians, or the more obvious examples of removing the Baath Party from power in Iraq and knocking the Taliban out of control of Afghanistan. I could go on all day with examples. I didn't think it was necessary to belabor the point that the idea that "we're at war with Islam" is ludicrous.

Even with the ones you are actually willing to bring up, these examples may be seen in different ways by people other than you. Not everyone may think the U.S. has done everything for purely altruistic reasons. For instance, you may recall that, in Baghdad last year, an Iraqi threw his shoes at Bush's head. I don't think this guy was showing his gratitude by means of some local custom. Perspectives of people abroad have been known to differ on occasion from those at home.

That "we're at war with Islam" is, of course, false, but I have seen many a rightwinger foaming online who would like us to be. They believe that not waging war on Islam is imbecilic. Imagine that!

You correctly answered the first question - the idea that we're at war with Islam comes from "Cock-eyed concocting militant Muslim fundamentalists looking for converts to destroy America"

You asked the wrong question. The right one would be: Do trumpeted acts of good will toward a people necessarily mean one respects who they are? The West has a long crusader history of hostility toward Islam. The invasion of Iraq did not ameliorate that image. Hopefully, Obama's Cairo speech was a step toward repairing America's strained relationship with the Islamic world and laying the groundwork for easing tensions between Israel and its neighbors.

You dodged my follow-up question on how Obama [who believes Arabic translators are needed in Afghanistan] and Biden [who believes giving money to Persians will stop Arabs from thinking America is going to nuke Arabs off the face of the Earth] will counter the perception of "cock-eyed concocting militant Muslim fundamentalists looking for converts to destroy America."

I declined to answer each of your questions because I was expecting a response addressing what I said.

psi bond said...

Continued

I know Rush Limbaugh declared in May, 2008 that we don't need them. However, although Pashto and Dari (the two official languages), and dialects of Farsi, Dardic, Balochi, Turkic languages, and many other languages are spoken in the country, it is not inconceivable that Arabic translators are needed in Afghanistan since the ultraconservative Taliban (who were driven from power and are trying to regain it) were educated in madrasahs where instruction was in Arabic. And al-Qaeda members who operate in the region may also be Arabic speakers. Indeed. most Afghans are bilingual.

The Biden sentiment comes from Biden's reaction to the 9/11 attacks as reported in The New Republic, in October 2001. The last six paragraphs of that linked article will deliver the knock down that the first half of the article sets up. Shortly after the 9/11 attacks, Biden was in a Senate Foreign relations committee suggesting a no-strings attached $200 million payment to Iran to "show the Arab world that we're not bent on its destruction."

It was not a meeting of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that Michael Crowley (who said of Obama, "he is a true intellectual--a talented writer and lyrical speaker") is writing of, but a casual Tuesday-morning meeting with his committee staffers. It's amazing how an informal idea thrown out to his staffers in an idea-groping brainstorming at the start of the post-9/11 era can have such longevity. Well, maybe not so amazing since a rightwinger was on the scene to record it supposedly verbatim and publish it, so that Internet-scavenging, single-minded, rightwing extremists dedicated to demonstrating liberal imbecility can retrieve it eight years later and propagate it throughout the rightwing blogosphere.

One has to wonder what outside-the-box ideas did Bush and Cheney come up with in private staff brainstorming meetings during those same unsettled, panicky days immediately after 9/11. Many Americans pushed themselves to think along bold unaccustomed tracks in the wake of 9/11. Like: "Invading their countries, killing their leaders, and converting the people to Christianity." In fact, a pre-emptive attack came not to be considered far-out foreign policy.

That Democrats tout Biden as a "foriegn policy expert" is nothing more to me than another example among near infinite ways to show that leftists are, without exception, all imbeciles.

Republicans have acknowledged Biden's foreign policy expertise, and Biden has collaborated effectively with important Republican Senate figures. Are they imbeciles, too, in your rightwing blanket view? Biden's efforts to combat hostilities in the Balkans in the 1990s brought national attention and influenced presidential policy---traveling repeatedly to the region, he made one meeting famous by calling Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic a "war criminal". Milosevic, as you may know, was subsequently indicted as war criminal but was never convicted (he died first). Biden consistently argued for lifting the arms embargo, training Bosnian Muslims, investigating war crimes and administering NATO air strikes. Biden's subsequent "lift and strike” resolution was instrumental in convincing President Clinton to use military force in the face of systemic human rights violations. These actions are now proudly cited as altruistic policies by rightwingers who originally called them stupid and goofy.

On 9/10 of 2001, Biden was giving a foreign policy speech to the National Press Club, criticizing the administration's fixation on unproven missile defense. He said, "The real threat comes to this country in the hold of a ship, the belly of a plane, or smuggled into a city in the middle of the night in a vial in a backpack."

psi bond said...

Continued

Many Americans unfamiliar with Biden (and your harsh opinion of him) were impressed by the foreign policy expertise that he demonstrated in the Democratic primary debates last year.

Let's go back to the question I posed.

I don't usually do interviews, but I am humoring here the paradoxical quest for enlightenment of someone who acts as if he believes he has had all the right answers since way before the Big Bang.

If America's long history of humanitarian assistance and military intervention on the behalf of Muslims all over the Islamic world does not dispel the idea that we're "at war with Islam" among the militant elements of the Islamic faith, how is the Obama that knows more about stapling flyers to telephone poles than basic political geography going to change that? How is the "foreign policy expert" Biden that can't tell the difference between Shia Persians and Sunni Arabs to the point that he "gropes" at giving $200 million dollars to a state sponsor of terrorism within a month of the 9/11 attacks going to change that?

Bush and McCain, you may recall, also had trouble differentiating between Shias and Sunnis. So did most Americans. Some still do. Bush also had some problems right after 9/11 in seeing the hijackers as they were. In his first public words afterward, he jarringly referred to them as 'folks'. Unlike the sufferers from ODS and B[iden]DS, I believe Obama and Biden are smart folks who can learn quickly and well.

Among the militant elements of the Islamic faith, the idea that we are at war with Islam will not be dispelled, especially when many rightwingers rudely disrespect the Muslim faith, obsessively calling it the religion of the devil or the moon god. Obama was definitely not addressing those Muslims. He was addressing Muslims that those Muslims want to reach. Just one day before the speech, bin Laden issued an audiotape warning Muslims not to trust whatever Obama would say. That indicates a worry that Obama, sending out eloquent straight-talking flyers to the Islamic world, may ultimately be convincing.

The easy answer for you should have been, "Well Beamish, Obama and Biden seem pretty clueless. The idea that Biden is a 'foreign policy expert' particularly makes me nearly piss myself with laughter.."

No, beamish, that is just the answer that jeering extreme rightwingers like to hear. Although you may judge Biden's policy proposals goofy and stupid, he has a lot more foreign policy experience than you evidence. And Obama has shown himself adept at achieving good relations with previously alienated allies. At a news conference Saturday with Sarkozy, the center-right French leader was seen hanging admiringly on every word of Obama, even though the latter had recently declined a dinner invitation with him. In the news conference, he called Obama's Cairo speech remarkable. Sarkozy's respect and affection for Obama were unmistakable. One has to wonder about juvenile rightwingers who are overjoyed when they imagine they can prove President Obama is an imbecile.

But, since you want to dig in your heels on the absurd idea that Obama and Biden aren't imbeciles, do please tell me how to have the confidence in them that you do.

Notwithstanding your dogged desire to dig your heels into the unsubstantiated a priori proposition that Obama and Biden are imbeciles (indeed it seems all your posting efforts are dedicated to that relentless crusade), the fact is that, as president and vice-president of the United States, they have available to them personnel with much more foreign-policy expertise and experience to draw on than you or anyone else in America, or than they themselves had access to when they were senators. And they demonstrate greater flexibility and pragmatism than you do here. They can move beyond any past mistakes in brainstorming sessions. Those are the reasons why I put more confidence in their foreign policy deliberations than in your ardently-argued, nakedly partisan-driven judgments of their imbecility.

Z said...

such a bombast, PSI BOND...you're a kick!

I'm leaving your posts for beamish.

By the way...the next question is why you'd have so much faith in obama's foreign intel people; couldn't be that YOU're the party hack?

You sound so sad...and, truly, nobody was going to thank you.

psi bond said...

I'm leaving your posts for beamish.

Thanks, Z. I hope he can address them with out spinning off tangentially. I have another for him down below.

By the way...the next question is why you'd have so much faith in obama's foreign intel people; couldn't be that YOU're the party hack?

I'm the optimist here. As I said, I believe in America. Call me whatever makes you happy, Z.

You sound so sad...and, truly, nobody was going to thank you.

I know that. I was being sarcastic.

I know that nobody here cares about preserving the intelligibility of the thread.

psi bond said...

beamish: Someone should ask Obama if Diophantus of Alexandria was a Muslim

Rush Limbaugh: This is simply outrageous. It was absurd, in fact. Let's see. Where do we start here? "It was innovation in Muslim communities that developed the order of algebra." No. The origins of algebra trace back to the ancient Babylonians. They were not Muslims. Algebra was temporarily [sic] developed by the ancient Greeks and later the English.

The word algebra is a Latin variant of the Arabic word al-jabr. This came from the title of a book, Hidab al-jabr wal-muqubala, written in Baghdad about 825 A.D. by the Arab mathematician Mohammed ibn-Musa al-Khowarizmi.

The words jabr (JAH-ber) and muqubalah (moo-KAH-ba-lah) were used by al-Khowarizmi to designate two basic operations in solving equations. Jabr was to transpose subtracted terms to the other side of the equation. Muqubalah was to cancel like terms on opposite sides of the equation. In fact, the title has been translated to mean "science of restoration (or reunion) and opposition" or "science of transposition and cancellation" and "The Book of Completion and Cancellation" or "The Book of Restoration and Balancing."


Jabr is used in the step where x - 2 = 12 becomes x = 14. The left-side of the first equation, where x is lessened by 2, is "restored" or "completed" back to x in the second equation.


Muqabalah takes us from x + y = y + 7 to x = 7 by "cancelling" or "balancing" the two sides of the equation.


Eventually the muqabalah was left behind, and this type of math became known as algebra in many languages.


Al-Khwarizmi was so influential that has own name, warped a little in translation, also has became a European and an English word, algorithm (1699), which now means any mathematical procedure. Other words attesting to the importance of Arabic scholarship in mathematics and science include alchemy (1362), elixir (1386), zenith (1387), nadir (1391), and cipher (1399).


According to Wikipedia, ”While the word "algebra" comes from Arabic word (al-jabr), its origins can be traced to the ancient Babylonians,who developed an advanced arithmetical system with which they were able to do calculations in an algebraic fashion. With the use of this system they were able to apply formulas and calculate solutions for unknown values for a class of problems typically solved today by using linear equations, quadratic equations, and indeterminate linear equations. By contrast, most Egyptians of this era, and most Indian, Greek and Chinese mathematicians in the first millennium BC, usually solved such equations by geometric methods, such as those described in the Rhind Mathematical Papyrus, Sulba Sutras, Euclid's Elements, and The Nine Chapters on the Mathematical Art. The geometric work of the Greeks, typified in the Elements, provided the framework for generalizing formulae beyond the solution of particular problems into more general systems of stating and solving equations.


The Greek mathematicians Hero of Alexandria and Diophantus continued the traditions of Egypt and Babylon, but Diophantus's book Arithmetica is on a much higher level. Later, Arab and Muslim mathematicians developed algebraic methods to a much higher degree of sophistication. Although Diophantus and the Babylonians used mostly special ad hoc methods to solve equations, Al-Khowarazmi was the first to solve equations using general methods. He solved the linear indeterminate equations, quadratic equations, second order indeterminate equations and equations with multiple variable.”

Iraq deserves some credit as the country of origin for algebra in honor of al-Khwarizmi's presence in Baghdad, a renowned center for scholars in his day.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

I see from your failure to admit that you're an imbecile that you're still not sincere about seeking to engage in honest dialogue.

You had it right when you replied that is Muslim extremists that concieve the absurd idea that America is at war with Islam.

But then when asked how Obama and Biden plan to counter this idea, you went into an absurd tirade on how that idea comes from "crazy right-wingers." Changed your mind?

Well, then, why go to the Middle East at all? Couldn't Obama have stayed home and addressed "crazy right-wingers" instead?

If you were actually interested in honest dialogue (and admit it, you're not) you would have addressed Democrat calls to attack Saudi Arabia ("because that's where the hijackers came from huh huh") or the boilerplate Democrat racist objections to having a Dubai company setting up port shipping operations in US coastal cities ("because they's Ay-rabs").

Let me know when you're sincerely ready to start an honest dialogue. Begin with the admission that you're an imbecile.

beamish said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
beamish said...

PsiBond,

Obama claimed that "It was innovation in Muslim communities that developed the order of algebra [...]"


...when in reality the "order of algebra" was already ancient Babylonian, Egyptian, and Greek mathematical knowledge well before the Baghdad Caliphate existed, and well before al-Khwarizmi formalized this ancient knowledge into a text.

Islam did not produce algebra. A Muslim wrote a book on a pre-existing mathematical system and his name became associated with it.

If Obama wishes to argue that Islam produced algebra, I'm going to need quotes from the Koran to back up the claim.

"[...]our magnetic compass and tools of navigation;[...]



Archaeology and history disagree. The earliest examples of magnetic lodestone compasses come from the Olmecs in Central America, circa 1000 BC.

The Chinese were using lodestone compasses in feng shui architecture by the 1st Century AD.

Europeans developed and were using a magnetic compass in maritime navigation by the early 12th Century.

The Arab world first heard of compasses in the 13th Century, and weren't using them for navigation for another 100 years or so.

If Obama actually knew something more about history than he does about stapling flyers to telephone poles, he would have made a more accurate statement about how pre-Islamic Arabs worshipped the stars in the sky and named them with names still used today, and consulted them for astrological guidance and navigation through desert lands without landmarks. He wouldn't have had to mention that the traditional meteorite worship is still preserved in Mecca.

our mastery of pens and printing;

The largest book-copying industry of the ancient world, atop the legacy of the Great Library which once stood there, was at Alexandria well before the conquest of Caliph Umar who ordered all texts there burned.

It took over a year for the Muslims to burn all the books there.

Alexandria went from being the literacy capital of the world to just another city ransacked by Muslim barbarians.

"[...]our understanding of how disease spreads and how it can be healed [...]"


See Hippocrates and Galen. All "Islamic" accomplishments in the field of medicinal arts are plagiarized from Greek precedents, and do not address Chinese herbalist traditions that predate even those by millennia.

It appears Obama's pandering statement - "As a student of history, I also know civilization's debt to Islam." - was as farcical as it was ridiculous.

He is no student of history, and certainly does not know civilization's debt to Islam.

"Gee thanks for the calligraphy, guys."

[which predates Islam as well]

beamish said...

Someone should ask Obama if Johannes Gutenberg was a Muslim.

psi bond said...

I see from your failure to admit that you're an imbecile that you're still not sincere about seeking to engage in honest dialogue.

I see, beamish, from your infantile obsession with having me admit what I am not that you are behaving dishonestly. Moreover, your carrying on a protracted exchange with someone whom you claim to believe is an imbecile is itself imbecilic. That would be readily admitted by anyone who is honest.

You had it right when you replied that is Muslim extremists that concieve the absurd idea that America is at war with Islam.

On the contrary, what I said was that extremist Muslim recruiters can cite the online utterances of rightwing extremists when they make the assertion that there is ample evidence that the West conceives the war on terror as a war on Islam.

But then when asked how Obama and Biden plan to counter this idea, you went into an absurd tirade on how that idea comes from "crazy right-wingers." Changed your mind?

No, I stated that Muslim extremists would never believe trumpeted acts of good will toward Muslims indicate that the U.S. has respect for Islam. The two short sentences that you exaggerate to be an “absurd tirade” are, in fact, factual statements. I merely said, concerning rightwing crazies, something that could easily be verified online–––that they show categorical contempt for Islam (see, for example, the extreme posts over many years of someone on FPM who originally called himself ‘Fred Somebody’ and later ‘Faithful O’; he was accorded respect by most of the rightwing regulars there).

Well, then, why go to the Middle East at all? Couldn't Obama have stayed home and addressed "crazy right-wingers" instead?

No, not instead–––and. Yes, he should address crazy rightwingers at home, and indeed he pledged to do something of the sort when he said he would fight negative stereotypes of Islam. Nonetheless, it was a smart move for the newly elected President Obama to go to a capital in the Middle East and attempt to establish a fresh start in relations between this country and the Islamic world, showing their religion the respect that rightwing crazies in America refuse to show.

If you were actually interested in honest dialogue (and admit it, you're not) you would have addressed Democrat calls to attack Saudi Arabia ("because that's where the hijackers came from huh huh") or the boilerplate Democrat racist objections to having a Dubai company setting up port shipping operations in US coastal cities ("because they's Ay-rabs"). [‘Ay-rabs’ is one of the least vicious names rightwingers have for them]

If you were honest, beamish, you would admit that your only intention in this exchange is to smear liberals with absurd innuendoes and decontextualized statements, not to talk seriously about ideas.

You would address what I said instead of diverge on unrelated tangents using boilerplate anti-liberal rightwing propaganda misrepresentations–––that is, if you really were serious about having an honest dialogue. And you would answer my questions.

Let me know when you're sincerely ready to start an honest dialogue. Begin with the admission that you're an imbecile.

Let me know, beamish, when you can respond in an honest way without trying to evade the subject by changing it. Begin by acknowledging that conservatives have a worrisome historical penchant for denigrating broad swaths of humanity as undesirables, imbeciles, or otherwise inferior beings. Follow that by admitting that you want to grandstand and use this site to showcase your utter intolerance of liberals. And finish, beamish, by confessing that your high opinion of yourself is clownishly imbecilic.

psi bond said...

beamish: Obama claimed that "It was innovation in Muslim communities that developed the order of algebra [...]"

...when in reality the "order of algebra" was already ancient Babylonian, Egyptian, and Greek mathematical knowledge well before the Baghdad Caliphate existed, and well before al-Khwarizmi formalized this ancient knowledge into a text.

In reality, the rudimentary algebra of the Babylonians, Egyptians, and ancient Greeks was little more than a primitive means of solving physical problems using operations of geometry. al-Khowarizmi (ca. 790 CE- ca. 840 CE), unlike Euclid, did not merely formalize a branch of mathematics. He took it to a level of sophistication that made it a well-developed, independent, general method of mathematical problem solving.

Islam did not produce algebra.

That is quite correct. Neither did Christianity produce deductive logic. However, in the wake of ancient civilizations, Islamic culture (for which ‘Islam’ is occasionally used as an abbreviation) gave birth to the beginnings of modern algebra.

A Muslim wrote a book on a pre-existing mathematical system and his name became associated with it.

No, the treatise that this famous Muslim scientist and mathematician wrote in Arabic transformed algebra, advancing it a great deal further than had been done in earlier civilizations. So much so, in fact, that the name of his book (not his own name, as you allege) was used in the West to signify algebra itself, and he himself is sometimes cited as the father of algebra.

If Obama wishes to argue that Islam produced algebra, I'm going to need quotes from the Koran to back up the claim.

Obama did not argue in his Cairo speech that Islam per se produced algebra. That would be a clownish assertion. Rather, innovation in Muslim communities led to the mathematical order of algebra as we know it today.

psi bond said...

The largest book-copying industry of the ancient world, atop the legacy of the Great Library which once stood there, was at Alexandria well before the conquest of Caliph Umar who ordered all texts there burned, It took over a year for the Muslims to burn all the books there.

beamish, none of the books in the Royal Library of Alexandria, charged with collecting all the world's knowledge, was a printed book. They were all handmade papyrus scrolls.

The ancient accounts by Plutarch, Aulus Gellius, Ammianus Marcellinus, and Orosius agree that Caesar accidentally burned the library down during his visit to Alexandria in 48 BCE. Although not confirmed in the accounts of contemporary historians, these accounts do suggest that the library was a thing of the past when Plutarch was writing around 100 CE.

Ancient and modern sources identify four possible occasions for the destruction of the Library of Alexandria:

1. Julius Caesar's Fire in The Alexandrian War, in 48 BCE

2. The attack of Aurelian in the third century CE;

3. The decree of the Christian emperor Theophilus I in 391 CE, ordering the destruction of all pagan temples;

4. The Muslim conquest in 642 CE or thereafter.

Several historians told varying accounts of an Arab army led by Amr ibn al 'Aas sacking the city in 642 after the Byzantine army was defeated at the Battle of Heliopolis, and that the commander asked the caliph Umar what to do with the library. He gave the famous answer: "They will either contradict the Koran, in which case they are heresy, or they will agree with it, in which case they are superfluous." It is said that the Arabs subsequently burned the books to heat bathwater for the soldiers. It was also said that the Library's collection was still substantial enough at this late date to provide six months' worth of fuel for the baths. However, this account has been dismissed by some as a legend.

While the first Western account of the supposed event was in Edward Pococke's 1663 translation of History of the Dynasties, it was dismissed as a hoax or propaganda as early as 1713 by Fr. Eusèbe Renaudot. Over the centuries, numerous succeeding scholars have agreed with Fr. Renaudot's conclusion, including Alfred J. Butler, Victor Chauvin, Paul Casanova and Eugenio Griffini.

More recently, in 1990, the Middle East scholar Bernard Lewis argued that the original account is not true, but that it survived over time because it was a useful myth for the great twelfth century Muslim leader Saladin, who found it necessary to break up the Fatimid caliphate's collection of heretical Isma'ili texts in Cairo following his restoration of Sunnism to Egypt. Lewis proposes that the story of the caliph Umar's support of a library's destruction may have made Saladin's actions seem more acceptable to his people.

Recent underwater excavations in the harbor of modern Alexandria have also lent credence to the idea that several catastrophic earthquakes between the third and fifth centuries CE may have played a role in the decline and/or destruction of the library (as well as the city itself).

But, of course, to rightwing extremists, fond of making statements condemning the Other, none of these scholarrly considerations is anything they could care about.

Obama: our mastery of pens and printing.

Islamic culture, in which images were forbidden, advanced calligraphy and printing to the highest level of fine art, as can be seen in many art museums of the West, including the U.S. (especially New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, which I can personally recommend for an overview of the splendor of Islamic civilization).

psi bond said...

The truth is there is disagreement as to exactly when the compass was invented.

The earliest examples of magnetic lodestone compasses come from the Olmecs in Central America, circa 1000 BC.

Depite your certainty, beamish, there is no agreement among scholars concerning the use to which the Mesoamerican hematite artifact was put by the Olmecs. In any case, it had no bearing on the advent of the compass in the West.

It is known that the use of a magnetic compass as a direction finder occurred sometime before 1044, but incontestable evidence for the use of the compass as a navigational device did not appear until 1119 in China.

There is debate among scholars on what happened to the compass after its first appearance with the Chinese. Theories include:

1. Travel of the compass from China to the Middle East via the Silk Road, and then to Europe.

2. Direct transfer of the compass from China to Europe, and then later from China or Europe to the Middle East.

3. Independent creation of the compass in Europe, and thereafter its transfer from China or Europe to the Middle East.

The latter two are supported by evidence of the earlier mentioning of the compass in European works rather than Arabic. The first European mention of a magnetized needle and its use among sailors occurs in Alexander Neckam's De naturis rerum (On the Natures of Things), probably written in Paris in 1190.

The Arab world first heard of compasses in the 13th Century, and weren't using them for navigation for another 100 years or so.

Not true. The earliest Arabic reference to its use for navigation indicates ca. 1242 CE or earlier.

The earliest known reference to an iron fish-like compass in the Islamic world occurs in a Persian talebook from 1232. The earliest Arabic reference to a compass - in the form of magnetic needle in a bowl of water - comes from the Yemeni sultan and astronomer Al-Ashraf in 1282. He also appears to be the first to make use of the compass for astronomical purposes. Since the author describes having witnessed the use of a compass on a ship trip some forty years earlier, some scholars are inclined to antedate its first appearance in the Arab world accordingly.

In 1300, another Arabic treatise written by the Egyptian astronomer and muezzin Ibn Sim’ūn describes a dry compass for use as a "Qibla indicator" to find the direction to Mecca. Like Peregrinus' compass, however, Ibn Sim’ūn's compass did not feature a compass card. In the 14th century, the Syrian astronomer and timekeeper Ibn al-Shatir (1304-1375) invented the compass dial, a timekeeping device incorporating both a universal sundial and a magnetic compass. He invented it for the purpose of finding the direction to Mecca and the times of Salah prayers at the Umayyad Mosque. Arab navigators also introduced the 32-point compass rose during this time.

Nonetheless, given the lacunae in scholars’ knowledge of the compass, doctrinaire statements about its history are not wise.

Although the rightwing blogosphere is happily flunking Obama in history, he was not lecturing in Cairo as a professional scholar of history. His purpose was altogether different, as his detractors well know.

psi bond said...

"[...]our understanding of how disease spreads and how it can be healed [...]"

beamish: See Hippocrates and Galen. All "Islamic" accomplishments in the field of medicinal arts are plagiarized from Greek precedents, and do not address Chinese herbalist traditions that predate even those by millennia.

The idea that nothing remained to be learned in medicine after Hippocrates and Galen was prevalent in Europe during the Dark Ages.

Islamic civilization rose to primacy in medical science as Muslim physicians contributed significantly to the field of medicine, including to anatomy, ophthalmology, pharmacology, pharmacy, physiology, surgery, and the pharmaceutical sciences. For example, Al-Kindi wrote De Gradibus, in which he demonstrated the application of mathematics to medicine, particularly in the field of pharmacology. This includes the development of a mathematical scale to quantify the strength of drugs, and a system that would allow a doctor to determine in advance the most critical days of a patient's illness. Abu al-Qasim (Abulcasis), regarded as the father of modern surgery, wrote the Kitab al-Tasrif (1000), a 30-volume medical encyclopedia which was taught at Muslim and European medical schools until the 17th century. He used numerous surgical instruments, including the instruments unique to women.

Muslim physicians established some of the earliest dedicated hospitals, which later spread to Europe during the Crusades, inspired by the hospitals in the Middle East

See Paul Verhoeven’s great film Flesh & Blood (1985) for a memorable illustration of how a doctor in Europe during the early Middle Ages initially scorns and then adopts a life-saving technique against the plague from Islamic medicine.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

Do not be personally offended by facts. If there were actually such a thing as intelligent leftists, I would make endeavors to find them and discuss with them. Instead, I'm stuck with you. Identifying leftists such as yourself as imbeciles is no more absurd than calling water wet.

I can not be blamed for the definition of the word "imbecile," nor can I be blamed for your choice or inherent nature in being indistinguishable from that definition.

Now your trainwreck of an "argument" has Muslim extremists reading "right wing crazies" on the internet and concluding "America is at war with Islam."

I've read Osama Bin Laden's and other Muslim terrorist manifestos, fatwas, and decrees. Not one of them mention right-wing internet comments as grievances, although canards like "global warming" and hallmark leftist anti-Semitic sentiments do make their appearances.

Frankly, I'm astonished that I'm the first to point out your imbecility.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

Personally I don't believe the Library of Alexandria itself existed as an actual structure after the late 4th Century.

It is historically incontestable that the city of Alexandria itself was the book-copying industry capital of the world, and the intellectual seat of the West when Caliph Umar and his Muslim barbarians sacked it in the 7th Century.

Tales of burning the books to heat bathing pools come from Muslim chronologies themselves.

What's relevant is that Obama's conjecture that Islam brought advances in printing is decidedly off-base.

Although the rightwing blogosphere is happily flunking Obama in history, he was not lecturing in Cairo as a professional scholar of history. His purpose was altogether different, as his detractors well know.


Well, I'm flunking him on all accounts, whatever his pandering intentions were. He made the claim that he was speaking as a student of history. It's low-hanging fruit to show his "scholarship" is what you'd expect from someone more familiar with staple guns than history books.

beamish said...

Someone should ask Obama if the Academy of Gundishapur in the ancient Sassanid (Persian) Empire was the first "Islamic" hospital, built two centuries before Prophet Muhammad was an itch in his daddy's pants.

Then someone should ask Obama why the First Council of Nicea (325 AD) ordered hospitals built in every cathedral town if Muslims hadn't invented them yet.

Someone should ask Obama when Muslims will invent a time machine and go back before Islam even existed to invent the things he gives them credit for.

Someone should ask Obama to teach PsiBond how to use a staple gun.

beamish said...

See Paul Verhoeven’s great film Flesh & Blood (1985) for a memorable illustration of how a doctor in Europe during the early Middle Ages initially scorns and then adopts a life-saving technique against the plague from Islamic medicine.

See the season finale of Ronald D. Moore's reimagining of Battlestar Galactica to see how insterstellar refugees from prehistoric human colonies in distant star systems fled genocidal robots in a ragtag fleet on a lonely quest to discover a shining planet to live on that they named Earth and introduced agriculture in Africa over 100,000 years ago.

My non sequitur is bigger. :P

psi bond said...

beamish: Do not be personally offended by facts.

Do not take personal offense when I correct you: That a person one knows on the Internet is an imbecile is not a fact; it is a judgment. One can only imagine why zealous folks would want to confuse the two–––judgment and fact.

You can be blamed for the imbecilic belief that saying someone who has different political views is thereby an imbecile is a way to search out and carry on a worthwhile exchange with him or others with similar views. The problem is not with liberals but with your perception of liberals. Like extremists in the Islamic world and like dictatorial governments, you stereotype a group of people that numbers in the many millions.

Now your trainwreck of an "argument" has Muslim extremists reading "right wing crazies" on the internet and concluding "America is at war with Islam."

That is an incorrect characterization of what you want to call my “argument”.

I am sure Muslim extremists know about the Internet and how to get on it and read it. And, as has been reported, that they have used it for recruiting. And even for issuing fatwas. Asserting that America is at war with Islam becomes more convincing to potential recruits when Muslim extremists can cite Americans who vehemently disrespect their religion, whether on the net, on TV, or in other media.

The term “trainwreck” is more appropriately applied to your fundamental implication that trumpeted acts of good will toward Muslims prove respect for the Muslim faith. You may want to rethink that. Whom Christians would convert, they first help.

Perhaps this will surprise you, but many Muslims have their own websites, and they can read what rightwingers here say about them.

Frankly, I’m astonished–––astonished!–––that you haven’t tried to use the disingenuous argument before now that Muslim extremists know nothing about what rightwing extremists in the U.S. are saying online about them. Well, maybe, not astonished–––just shocked!

psi bond said...

Personally I don't believe the Library of Alexandria itself existed as an actual structure after the late 4th Century.

More importantly, many scholars don't believe the Library of Alexandria itself existed as an actual structure after the late 4th century CE. Hence, it could not have been burned down by Muslims without access to a time machine.

It is historically incontestable that the city of Alexandria itself was the book-copying industry capital of the world, and the intellectual seat of the West when Caliph Umar and his Muslim barbarians sacked it in the 7th Century.

It is rationally incontestable that this piece of Internet erudition has nothing to do with Obama’s words about printing, since it is incontestable that there were only papyrus scrolls, not bound books, in the Library of Alexandria. Muslims have a history of preserving and establishing libraries–––e.g., the caliph Harun al-Rashid. established the library Bayt al-Hikma ("House of Wisdom") in Baghdad. The great scholars of the House of Wisdom included al-Khwarizmi, the "father" of algebra.

Tales of burning the books to heat bathing pools come from Muslim chronologies themselves.

These tales may be myths, as Bernard Lewis believes, or the so-called burned books may have been accounting records of Alexandrian exports to Rome, of which there were many thousands.

What's relevant is that Obama's conjecture that Islam brought advances in printing is decidedly off-base.

What’s important is that when Obama spoke of mastery of pens and printing, his Muslim audience immediately understood. He was referring to refinements and advances in the book arts in Islamic cultural centers. Workshops supported by Muslim rulers and members of their extended family produced copies of famous literary works, histories, and Qur’ans. Most of these hand-sewn bound books were the laborious results of a collaboration of artists. Many such magnificent decorated books can be seen in the collections of Western art museums.

(The re-invention of printing by movable type in the West would have been impossible without paper, which was also invented by the Chinese, in approximately the 2nd century CE, and this initially came to Europe via trade with the Arabs from China.)

Although the rightwing blogosphere is happily flunking Obama in history, he was not lecturing in Cairo as a professional scholar of history. His purpose was altogether different, as his detractors well know.

Well, I'm flunking him on all accounts, whatever his pandering intentions were. He made the claim that he was speaking as a student of history. It's low-hanging fruit to show his "scholarship" is what you'd expect from someone more familiar with staple guns than history books.

All of us are students of history in our fashion. You, like many other rightwingers, joyfully flunk Obama in all areas, but impartial observers give him an excellent grade for his disarming oratorical salvo in Cairo to the Islamic world.

psi bond said...

beamish: Someone should ask Obama if the Academy of Gundishapur in the ancient Sassanid (Persian) Empire was the first "Islamic" hospital, built two centuries before Prophet Muhammad was an itch in his daddy's pants.

You do not appear, beamish, to have respect for the Muslim faith. Do you believe Muslims are imbeciles? Someone should ask beamish that since he doesn't answer questions from me.

In fact, what I said was: "Muslim physicians established some of the earliest dedicated hospitals, which later spread to Europe during the Crusades, inspired by the hospitals in the Middle East." The Academy of Gundishapur was certainly not a dedicated hospital. It was a complex consisted of a university, a library, and a teaching hospital. It was the first teaching hospital where students were authorized to methodically practice on patients under the supervision of physicians as part of their education. One expert (C. Elgood, A Medical History of Persia) has argued that "to a very large extent, the credit for the whole hospital system must be given to Persia"

According to scholars, the Sinhalese (Sri Lankans) are perhaps responsible for introducing to the world the concept of dedicated hospitals, institutions specifically dedicated to the care of the sick. But Europe learned of the concept from the Muslims on incursions into the Middle East during the Crusades.

The first free public hospital was opened in Baghdad during the Caliphate of Haroon-ar-Rashid in the 8th century CE.

Then someone should ask Obama why the First Council of Nicea (325 AD) ordered hospitals built in every cathedral town if Muslims hadn't invented them yet.

The First Council of Nicaea in 325 A.D. urged the Church to provide for the poor, sick, widows and strangers. It ordered the construction of a hospital in every cathedral town. These were not dedicated hospitals. They usually were associated with monasteries or nunneries, and also provided lodgings for travelers.

Someone should ask Obama when Muslims will invent a time machine and go back before Islam even existed to invent the things he gives them credit for.

It is a clownish supposition that Obama is giving Muslim culture credit for inventing hospitals or inventing medicine or inventing algebra or inventing printing or book arts. He credits Muslim culture with mastering, advancing, and preserving for information transfer to Europe in the Middle Ages many of the things that are often taken for granted in the West as achievements of Western civilization.

Someone should ask Obama to teach PsiBond how to use a staple gun.

Someone should ask a rightwinger with a decent liberal arts education (there are some) to teach beamish to read properly so he won't give the impression of an uncultured clownish Googler.

psi bond said...

Obama: our understanding of how disease spreads and how it can be healed .

Avicenna (the Latinized name of Abu Ali Sina Balkhi) (ca. 980-1037), considered the father of modern medicine and one of the greatest thinkers and medical scholars in history, wrote The Canon of Medicine (1020) and The Book of Healing (11th century), which remained standard textbooks in both Muslim and European universities until the 17th century. Avicenna's contributions include the introduction of systematic experimentation and quantification into the study of physiology, the discovery of the contagious nature of infectious diseases, the introduction of quarantine to limit the spread of contagious diseases, the introduction of experimental medicine and clinical trials, the contagious nature of phthisis and tuberculosis, first descriptions of bacteria and viral organisms, and the idea of a syndrome in the diagnosis of specific diseases.

Also known as the Qanun, which means "law" in Arabic and Persian, The Canon of Medicine remained a medical authority up until the 18th century and early 19th century. It set the standards for medicine in Europe and the Islamic world, and is Avicenna's most renowned written work. Qanun was used at many medical schools—at University of Montpellier, France, as late as 1650. Much of the book was also translated into Chinese as the Hui Hui Yao Fang (Prescriptions of the Hui Nationality). by the Hui people in Yuan China.. The Canon also formed the basis of Unani medicine, a form of traditional medicine practiced in India. The principles of medicine described by him ten centuries ago in this book, are still taught at UCLA and Yale University, among others, as part of the history of medicine.

psi bond said...

My non sequitur is bigger.

Your citation is just not a propos, beamish. It's simple-minded TV science fiction throwing Australopithecus afarensis under the bus, but not Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.

The film I cite is based on medieval European history and provides a realistic portrayal of how superior Islamic medical techniques were introduced into the West after the Crusades.

psi bond said...

Some illuminating a propos readings from my library:

The Arabic translators preserved several Greek mathematical works that are lost in the Greek original, such as the Spherics of Menelaus, On Division of Euclid, Books V-VII of the Conics of Apollonius and Books IV-VII of the Arithmetica of Diophantus. New traces of lost Greek mathematical works are still to be found in Arabic texts.

— I. Grattan–Guinness, ed.,Companion Encyclopedia of the History and Philosophy of the Mathematical Sciences (1994), Vol. 1, p. 72.


There was a religious rationale, of course, for studying the philosophy and science of the Arabs [in fifteenth century Spain after the Reconquista]. In order to defend the [Christian] faith and convert the unconverted, one had to know their language and thinking. Still, defensive strategy alone cannot explain the Christians’ fascination with Muslim culture. How had the former horsemen of the Arabian Peninsula managed to develop such remarkable competence in science and philosophy? What were the sources of their wisdom? It had long been rumored that they were in possession of ancient documents long lost to the Latin West–––priceless treasures of esoteric or forgotten knowledge. But the reality was more fantastic than anyone had imagined. Almost as soon as they began to speak with local scholars, inquisitive Christians discovered that the Muslims and Jews had long ago translated virtually every important work of Greek learning (as well as monuments of ancient Persian and Indian culture) into Arabic. Not only that, they had commented extensively on Aristotle, Plato, and the Greek scientists, and reinterpreted classical thinking in the light of their own commitment to monotheism.

Clearly the Muslims were creative thinkers in their own right. Their cultural achievements were the pride of Moorish Spain. But the warrior-kings, who centuries earlier, had conquered the great centers of classical learning in Syria, Egypt, and Mesopotamia had given them a head start by acquiring their subjects’ cultural treasures along with their lands
.

— Richard R. Rubinstein, Aristotle's Children: How Christians, Muslims, and Jews Rediscovered Ancient Wisdom and Illuminated the Middle Ages (2003), pp. 14-15.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

You do not appear, beamish, to have respect for the Muslim faith. Do you believe Muslims are imbeciles?

You already know I believe Obama is an imbecile. It has nothing to do with his faith. My own sister is a convert to Islam. I don't believe my sister is an imbecile. [I do question her choice to worship a rock stored in Mecca over gravel in my driveway, however]

I do not believe, as Obama formulates, that the religion of Islam itself is responsible for the advances he cites, which we've both adequately shown are either plagiarized or extrapolated from pre-existing Greek, Egyptian, Persian, and Babylonian works.

If it is the religion of Islam itself that made these advances in science possible, as Obama would have it, then why not teach Islam in public schools?

Beat our kids with chains until they memorize the Koran. We'll have the Unified Field Theory worked out in no time, right?

psi bond said...

You do not appear, beamish, to have respect for the Muslim faith. Do you believe Muslims are imbeciles?

You already know I believe Obama is an imbecile. It has nothing to do with his faith. My own sister is a convert to Islam. I don't believe my sister is an imbecile. [I do question her choice to worship a rock stored in Mecca over gravel in my driveway, however.

You may not admit it, but your belief about the imbecility of Obama has to do with his beliefs, which you reject utterly. Since it is clear that you strongly reject the Muslim faith, it is natural to suppose you would also condemn Muslims as imbeciles. Your belief that they are rock worshippers (animists) rather than the monotheists they claim to be, suggests the conclusion that you do indeed believe they are imbeciles, with the exception of your sister. Has your sister told you she believes not in Allah and Muhammad but in the sacred black stone in the Kaabah? Or is that just your way of ridiculing what you feel is her imbecilic belief?

I do not believe, as Obama formulates, that the religion of Islam itself is responsible for the advances he cites, which we've both adequately shown are either plagiarized or extrapolated from pre-existing Greek, Egyptian, Persian, and Babylonian works.

As I said previously, that is a clownish assumption. Obama did not say that Islam per se produced the accomplishments of Islamic civilization. He spoke of Muslim communities, which is a reference to culture.

The magnificent architecture of the finest mosques in the Middle East is not a plagiarism or mere extrapolation of Paleolithic caves preserving sacred petroglyphs. They have in common a roof and walls and little else. Misreading sources and ignoring contrary facts I presented, you have persistently tried to denigrate Muslim civilization, while I have shown that it is an unforeseen high level of advancement, creatively combining influences from the East and the West, that re-invigorated Western civilization in a post-Classical period of decline. All too frequently, rightwingers in the U.S. evidence a penchant for deriding non-Western cultures as third-rate and imbecilic----and they extend this ill-reasoned judgment to members of these cultures, whom the goofy ones believe to be genetically inferior and/or subhuman.

If you want to dismiss the creative refinements and high-level advances of later civilizations as blatant plagiarism or predictable extrapolation, then, to be honest, you must dismiss in the same way the achievements of the West and American civilization. One can contend that the American system of democracy is merely an extrapolation from Athenian democracy. But, in that case, a large number of rightwingers would disagree with you, for they obstinately claim, albeit with little logic, that American democracy is an outgrowth of Christianity itself.

If it is the religion of Islam itself that made these advances in science possible, as Obama would have it, then why not teach Islam in public schools?

It is a clownish assumption, which Obama does not make, despite your obstinate imbecilic mischaracterization of his words. Islam did not produce the advances of science, any more than Christianity did.

Beat our kids with chains until they memorize the Koran. We'll have the Unified Field Theory worked out in no time, right?

I believe chains may be more conducive to strengthening links and beating out kinks holding back the universal adoption of 11-dimensional string theory as the TOE (Theory of Everything).

And waterboarding may help to accelerate the educative process.

Nonetheless, it should be borne in mind that any theory that is developed would indubitably be nothing more than a plagiarism or extrapolation from Thales and the earliest ancient Greek philosophers, who postulated an underlying unity behind the diversity of appearances.

psi bond said...

Some more illuminating a propos reading from my library:

In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries many Arabic mathematical texts were translated into Latin in Spain, and to a lesser extent, in Sicily. These were Arabic translations of Greek mathematical works, but also works by Arabic authors, such as the treatises on Hindu numbers and algebra by al-Khwarizmi and the Optics of Ibn al-Haytham. Thus the medieval European scholars came into contact with mathematics and astronomy of a much higher level than they had known before. Another type of transmission is exemplified by Leonardo of Pisa (Fibonacci), who traveled and studied in the Western Arabic world and wrote various books on mathematics after his return. It is important to bear in mind that the level of mathematics was much higher in the Eastern Islamic world (Iraq and Persia) than in the Western world, and that most of the mathematical discoveries were unknown in areas west of Egypt. Thus the transmission of Arabic mathematics into medieval Europe was very incomplete, and often the works that were transmitted (such as those of al-Khwarizmi) represent a stage that had long been surpassed in the East.

— I. Grattan–Guinness, ed., Companion Encyclopedia of the History and Philosophy of the Mathematical Sciences (1994), Vol. 1, p. 78.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

You may not admit it, but your belief about the imbecility of Obama has to do with his beliefs, which you reject utterly. Since it is clear that you strongly reject the Muslim faith, it is natural to suppose you would also condemn Muslims as imbeciles. Your belief that they are rock worshippers (animists) rather than the monotheists they claim to be, suggests the conclusion that you do indeed believe they are imbeciles, with the exception of your sister. Has your sister told you she believes not in Allah and Muhammad but in the sacred black stone in the Kaabah? Or is that just your way of ridiculing what you feel is her imbecilic belief?

My sister has made it clear that worshipping "Allah" requires genuflection facing the city of Mecca and the Kabaa within it. I presume the specific ritual obeisance and worshipful kissing done upon the pre-Islamic black idol stone of al-Manat which is still kept at the Kabaa by pilgrims there is the focal point of prayers launched on a Mecca-bound trajectory from any pious Muslim anywhere on Earth.

Despite my questioning of what my sister finds divinity in, she's no imbecile. Like myself, she is gifted with high pattern recognition skills and eidetic memory. From an English and Arabic side-by-side edition of the Koran and conversations with Arabs, she taught herself how to read and write Arabic within a year, and now teaches English to Arab children in Egypt. I disagree with her chosen theology. I am impressed with her quick absorption of a foreign language and alphabet.

Obama did not say that Islam per se produced the accomplishments of Islamic civilization. He spoke of Muslim communities, which is a reference to culture.


Obama specifically said "As a student of history, I also know civilization's debt to Islam."

Instead of imagining ourselves in an alternate universe where an Obama with a profound ability to speak more eloquently exists, let's stick to what Obama actually said and how he said it in the reality we share.

It is quite clear that Obama said and meant that civilization owes a debt to the religion of Islam itself.

It is also quite clear that we both realize Obama's actual statement to be wholesale ridiculous.

beamish said...

If you want to dismiss the creative refinements and high-level advances of later civilizations as blatant plagiarism or predictable extrapolation, then, to be honest, you must dismiss in the same way the achievements of the West and American civilization. One can contend that the American system of democracy is merely an extrapolation from Athenian democracy. But, in that case, a large number of rightwingers would disagree with you, for they obstinately claim, albeit with little logic, that American democracy is an outgrowth of Christianity itself.

Athenian democracy was closer to the TV show Survivor where contestants were voted "off the island" - Greek society voted to cast people into exile (or have them drink poisons).

American democracy, particularly the government's division into 3 branches (judicial, legislative, executive) is based heavily upon the political writings of the Baron de Montesquieu, who specifically adapted the modeling of government functions into three branches from his reading of Isaiah 33:22 - "The LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our king."

Christians have a better (albeit indirect) argument for saying the American form of government derives from the Bible than Muslims do for claiming the solution of polynomial equations came from the Koran.

beamish said...

Then again, perhaps we should ban Algebra classes from public schools on separation of church and state grounds. ;)

psi bond said...

My sister has made it clear that worshipping "Allah" requires genuflection facing the city of Mecca and the Kabaa within it. I presume the specific ritual obeisance and worshipful kissing done upon the pre-Islamic black idol stone of al-Manat [the chief idol that was worshiped by the Khuza'ah and Hudhayl tribes] which is still kept at the Kabaa by pilgrims there is the focal point of prayers launched on a Mecca-bound trajectory from any pious Muslim anywhere on Earth.

How do you jump from those facts to the conclusion you have repeatedly made that they worship a stone as their god? Is worshiping Allah when not in Mecca, Muhammad's birthplace, a mere substitute for worship of the stone housed in the Kaaba, which was allegedly built by Old Testament angels?

Most people, even kafirs, can see the difference between veneration for sacred objects and sites and the worship of God---no matter whether the religion is Jewish, Christian, or Muslim. One can only guess why some folks would assert that Muslims worship a stone instead of God. It’s a good bet it has a lot to do with contempt for the Muslim faith.

Despite my questioning of what my sister finds divinity in, she's no imbecile. Like myself, she is gifted with high pattern recognition skills and eidetic memory. From an English and Arabic side-by-side edition of the Koran and conversations with Arabs, she taught herself how to read and write Arabic within a year, and now teaches English to Arab children in Egypt. I disagree with her chosen theology. I am impressed with her quick absorption of a foreign language and alphabet.

Well, if that's all it takes to receive an exemption from your personal edict of imbecility, not that any rational person would care to get one, there are quite a few liberals I know who have more than adequate pattern recognition and eidetic memory and who have learned another Semitic language, Hebrew, and are teaching English in Israel, or are planning to do so.

Obama specifically said "As a student of history, I also know civilization's debt to Islam."
Instead of imagining ourselves in an alternate universe where an Obama with a profound ability to speak more eloquently exists, let's stick to what Obama actually said and how he said it in the reality we share. It is quite clear that Obama said and meant that civilization owes a debt to the religion of Islam itself
.

In your alternate universe, beamish, dictionaries are disbelieved. Random House Dictionary 2009 has two definitions for Islam:

1. the religious faith of Muslims, based on the words and religious system founded by the prophet Muhammad and taught by the Koran, the basic principle of which is absolute submission to a unique and personal god, Allah.
2. the whole body of Muslim believers, their civilization, and the countries in which theirs is the dominant religion
.

Definition 2b in the The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 4th ed. (2009), defines Islam as: "The civilization developed by the Muslim world."

It's quite clear that Obama was using the word in that sense---namely, the civilization of the Muslims. Obama was saying that (Western) civilization owes a debt to Islamic civilization (Islam, for short). Propagandists need decontextualized statements, but the full context exposes their deceit:

"As a student of history, I also know civilization's debt to Islam. It was Islam at places like al-Azhar that carried the light of learning through so many centuries, paving the way for Europe's Renaissance and Enlightenment. It was innovation in Muslim communities that developed the order of algebra, our magnetic compass and tools of navigation, our mastery of pens and printing, our understanding of how disease spreads and how it can be healed. Islamic culture has given us majestic arches and soaring spires, timeless poetry and cherished music, elegant calligraphy and places of peaceful contemplation."

psi bond said...

Continued

It is also quite clear that we both realize Obama's actual statement to be wholesale ridiculous.

Of the two of us, I am the only one to whom it is quite clear that it is the way in which you disingenuously want to interpret Obama's straightforward statement that is manifestly clownishly absurd. Hence it's advantageous for someone with your political beliefs to stubbornly misinterpret it so, no matter what sensible folks think.

psi bond said...

If you want to dismiss the creative refinements and high-level advances of later civilizations as blatant plagiarism or predictable extrapolation, then, to be honest, you must dismiss in the same way the achievements of the West and American civilization. One can contend that the American system of democracy is merely an extrapolation from Athenian democracy. But, in that case, a large number of rightwingers would disagree with you, for they obstinately claim, albeit with little logic, that American democracy is an outgrowth of Christianity itself.

Athenian democracy was closer to the TV show Survivor where contestants were voted "off the island" - Greek society voted to cast people into exile (or have them drink poisons).

You imply that American democracy is more than an extrapolation from Athenian democracy. This is in agreement with my thinking. However, many rightwingers have talked about casting into exile millions of people with whom they disagree. So, at least in the minds of those on the right, the link may be better preserved; Athenian society also maintained slaves who generally had no human rights.

American democracy, particularly the government's division into 3 branches (judicial, legislative, executive) is based heavily upon the political writings of the Baron de Montesquieu, who specifically adapted the modeling of government functions into three branches from his reading of Isaiah 33:22 - "The LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our king."

Fortunately for all of us, our founding fathers broke decisively with the theocracy favored by Isaiah. The Constitution divides the powers of judgment, of lawgiving, and of execution of the law, placing them into the hands of different men. None of them was the LORD, his clergymen, or his prophets, for, under the Constitution, the public officials who were to be elected by the people were not to be submitted to any religious test. Laws were to be made by men, who, to the dismay of theocratic patriarchs on the right, were not bound by divine laws of anyone's god.

In his book America's God and Country (p. 453), William Federer claims that Montesquieu based his theory of divided powers on two Biblical passages: Isaiah 33:22, and Jeremiah 17:19. The problem that Federer's argument has is that it is not true. Montesquieu develops his argument for separation of powers in Book XI of The Spirit of the Laws, and nowhere in this book does he reference Isaiah, Jeremiah, or any other book of the Bible. On the contrary, Montesquieu's examples in this section are all drawn from contemporary European and pre-Christian Roman and Germanic history. Christian-nation evangelicals teaching that American democracy is of Christian origin (via the Old Testament, which is supposedly extrapolated in the New Testament) have heavily based their claim on a myth that is flimsy albeit persistent.

Christians have a better (albeit indirect) argument for saying the American form of government derives from the Bible than Muslims do for claiming the solution of polynomial equations came from the Koran.

Christians have a bogus argument. The Bible has no mention of the concept that all legitimate political power derives solely from the consent of the governed. This was the seventeenth-century political philosophy of John Locke, expressed in the Two Treatises of Civil Government. In the First Treatise Locke offered a point-by-point critique of Robert Filmer's Patriarchia, or the Natural Power of Kings (1680), an attempt to show that divinely-ordained hereditary monarchy is the natural system of human social organization. This attempt is based on Old Testament history from Genesis onwards. Locke's Enlightenment thinking is reflected in the Declaration of Independence.

The general solution of quadratic equations was not developed by Muslim clerics but by a secular mathematician who was a Muslim working in a centuries-old culture with a reverence for learning and scholarship.

psi bond said...

Then again, perhaps we should ban Algebra classes from public schools on separation of church and state grounds. ;)

Absolutely, and, for the same reason, medical subjects should not be taught in public schools. And not the Trinity, i.e., the tripartite nature of the American system of governance.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

It is also quite clear that we both realize Obama's actual statement to be wholesale ridiculous.

Of the two of us, I am the only one to whom it is quite clear that it is the way in which you disingenuously want to interpret Obama's straightforward statement that is manifestly clownishly absurd. Hence it's advantageous for someone with your political beliefs to stubbornly misinterpret it so, no matter what sensible folks think.

I don't misinterpret anything. Obama's self-proclaimed mission was to inform the Islamic world that America is not at war with them, which is as blatantly unnecessary as informing meteorologists that clouds are made of water vapor.

Obama stated that civilization "owes a debt to Islam."

Even read as "civilization owes a debt to Islamic societies" or "civilization owes a debt to people ruled by Sharia law" doesn't ameliorate the ridiculousness of what our bufoonish President said.

Islam has nothing to do with algebra or printing or navigation or surgery or anything else plagiarized / "innovated" by Muslims.

We don't owe Islam a debt for these technological and scientific advances anymore than we owe Judaism a debt for the atomic bomb or Christianity a debt for lunar landings.

Obama's error is catagorical.

psi bond said...

Hence it's advantageous for someone with your political beliefs to stubbornly misinterpret it so, no matter what sensible folks think.

I don't misinterpret anything.

Heavily exploiting a statement stripped of its context, ripping up the dictionary, and imagining on your own what words mean, you misinterpret the sense in which Obama used the term 'Islam'. You misinterpret as well the quality of scholarship of those trying to argue that America is of Christian origin. As well as the significance of the stone in the Kaaba to the Muslim faith. As well as the relevance to a judgment on his mental ability of an offhand remark Biden made in 2001 in a brainstorming session at the start of the post-9/11 era. As well as misinterpreting trumpeted acts of good will toward Muslims as respect for their religion. This is only the most entertaining half of the top ten list.

Obama's self-proclaimed mission was to inform the Islamic world that America is not at war with them, which is as blatantly unnecessary as informing meteorologists that clouds are made of water vapor.

It is unnecessary to inform meteorologists of what clouds are made, but it may be necessary to tell them that the public does not personally hate them for wrong predictions. You misinterpret epistemological categories that necessitate a distinction between objective and subjective knowledge. The perspectives abroad regarding the intention of the West held by the moderate Muslims that Obama wanted to reach consists to a large extent of subjective knowledge.

Obama stated that civilization "owes a debt to [the civilization of] Islam."

As impartial observers know, it does.

Even read as "civilization owes a debt to Islamic societies" or "civilization owes a debt to people ruled by Sharia law" doesn't ameliorate the ridiculousness of what our bufoonish President said.

As is quite clear to practically everyone except you, Obama said civilization owes a debt to Islamic civilization, which held libraries, learning, and scholarship in great reverence during a time when Classical civilization had collapsed in the West and Europe was entering the Dark Ages.

Islam has nothing to do with algebra or printing or navigation or surgery or anything else plagiarized / "innovated" by Muslims.

Notwithstanding your derision of Islam (Islamic culture), Islamic culture has a lot to do with the Zeitgeist in which learning flourished and produced a level of sophistication beyond what came before it. Rather than plagiarizing them, Islam tolerated the native cultures of its conquests, and it preserved and extended the great achievements of Classical civilization.

The British historian of science Colin A. Ronan (Science: Its History and Development Among the World's Cultures (1982), p. 201) has nailed it: "Islam has consequently played a crucial role in world history, both as a civilization in its own right, and as an intermediary between the civilizations of antiquity and those of the early modern world. This twofold aspect of the contribution of Islam is reflected in the history of science."

We don't owe [the religion of] Islam a debt for these technological and scientific advances anymore than we owe Judaism a debt for the atomic bomb or Christianity a debt for lunar landings.

Nor Hinduism a debt for Hindu-Arabic numerals that advanced mathematical research when introduced in the West. Nor Christianity a debt for the U.S. Constitution, that rejects the divinity of kings. Nor Nazism a debt for rocketry that may have been plagiarized in Apollo 11 to the moon.

Islam did not produce the kind of intellectual atmosphere that supported putting Galileo under house arrest until the end of his life or burning Giordano Bruno.

Obama's error is catagorical.

Your error is categorical. As well as phantasmagorical.

And the absolute faith you have in your misinterpretation is virtually allegorical.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

You've thrice tried to re-interpret Obama's statement that "civilization owes a debt to Islam" into:

"Civilization owes a debt to Muslim communities"

"Civilization owes a debt to Islamic societies"

"Civilization owes a debt to Islamic civilization"

None of these desperately writhing reformulations extricate Obama's statement from its inherent ridiculousness.

I've misinterpreted nothing. In the context of Obama's pandering to the "Islamic world," he is specifically noting Islam - Muslims and their "Islamicness" as the reason civilizational advances that didn't originate in the Islamic world in the first place didn't pass away into oblivion.

Obama went to Cairo to praise Islam / Muslims and their "Islamicness" for ink pens and quadratic equations.

When this is pointed out plainly, you want to remove the religion of Islam from the context all together.

Obama ridiculously believes civilization owes the entire Muslim faith a debt for the work of a Arab scholars.

You believe Obama said something he didn't.

Obama is stupid. You seem delusional.

psi bond said...

You've thrice tried to re-interpret Obama's statement that "civilization owes a debt to Islam" into: "Civilization owes a debt to Muslim communities" "Civilization owes a debt to Islamic societies" "Civilization owes a debt to Islamic civilization"

Thanks for collecting my words here. I had to repeat myself twice because you keep repeating the same arguments with slightly varied wording. All three quoted sentences are essentially equivalent, not incompatible at all.

Obama's usage of the word 'Islam' is congruent with that of British historian of science Colin A. Ronan, when, more than a quarter century ago, he wrote : "Islam has consequently played a crucial role in world history, both as a civilization in its own right, and as an intermediary between the civilizations of antiquity and those of the early modern world...."

None of these desperately writhing reformulations extricate [sic] [extricating you from ridiculous grammatical error: when the subject is 'None', 'extricates' is proper English]Obama's statement from its inherent ridiculousness.

It is not reformulation, but strict dictionary definition that is involved. That 'Islam' means 'the civilization of the Muslim people' is not a re-interpretation when the context is discussion of a civilization's achievements. Rather, it is the natural, commonsensical interpretation in that context. Insisting for the context you seek to re-interpret that it must mean 'the Muslim faith' is a determined attempt (ignorant or disingenuous) to grossly misinterpret it so as to render it inextricably ridiculous and clownish.

psi bond said...

Continued

I've misinterpreted nothing. In the context of Obama's pandering to the "Islamic world," he is specifically noting Islam - Muslims and their "Islamicness" as the reason civilizational advances that didn't originate in the Islamic world in the first place didn't pass away into oblivion.

The truth is you misinterpret all your misinterpretations.

When Obama stated in his contested Cairo speech that "The relationship between Islam and the West includes centuries of coexistence and cooperation but also conflict and religious wars", he was speaking of the historical relationship between Islamic societies and Western societies.

As hardline rightwingers are wont to do with what Obama says, you misinterpret Obama's speech as something undesirable----in this case, pandering. But he stood before the Islamic world, on their own territory, and said the relationship between the U.S. and Israel is "unbreakable". He boldly stated to his Muslim audience: "This bond is unbreakable. It is based upon cultural and historical ties and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied." He got no applause for that."Threatening Israel with destruction or repeating vile stereotypes about Jews is deeply wrong," he said. He got no applause for that either.

You misinterpret repeatedly the role of Islam as being merely one of preservation of the cultural treasures of earlier civilizations while ignoring the role it played, as scholars attest, in extending them. For a clearer view, see the readings I provide below from offline books, at no cost to you. It should be noted that while Islam was revering and preserving secular ancient Classical works, many Church authorities in the West saw most of them as pagan writings not fit to see the light of day, with the exception of those few that they could interpret as relating to the Christian faith.

Obama went to Cairo to praise Islam / Muslims and their "Islamicness" for ink pens and quadratic equations.

That is a manifestly clownish misinterpretation springing from extreme conservativeness. You couldn't make it clearer that your primary intention is to ridicule his speech and its audacious purpose.

When this is pointed out plainly, you want to remove the religion of Islam from the context all together.

The religion of Islam is not in the context under dispure. On the contrary, you want to insert the religion of Islam into a context in which he deals with the contributions of Islam (short in this context for Islamic civilization) to world civilization. Under Nazism, the science of rocketry advanced markedly, but it was certainly not due to rightwing concepts of the superiority of the white race that were then prevalent in Germany.

Obama ridiculously believes civilization owes the entire Muslim faith a debt for the work of a Arab scholars.

No, you believe or pretend to believe that "Obama ridiculously believes civilization owes the entire Muslim faith a debt for the work of a [sic] Arab scholars."

To stay with the facts, beamish, nowhere does Obama explicitly say that. That is your unsupportable interpretation, which is a clownish misinterpretation.

To be fair, you must admit that he did not at all say that the Islamic faith produced splendid things at the same time that the Christian faith produced little in the way of a cultivated society.

You believe Obama said something he didn't.

In order to make it seem he said something he didn't, you misinterpret how Obama used the word 'Islam' (it was definition 2b) . In English usage, 'Islam' can refer either to a religion or a civilization, depending entirely on the context. Yours is not the commonsense or usual way to understand the word when speaking of a civilization's achievements.

Obama is stupid. You seem delusional.

It is stupid to imagine you have proved Obama is stupid. All your writhing here is delusional, beamish.

And befuddled, besides.

psi bond said...

Still more illuminating a propos readings from my library:

There are two aspects of Islamic science, on the one hand the scientific ideas which were imported from outside, and, on the other, the contributions of the Arabs themselves to the sum of scientific knowledge. This latter, the Arabs' own contribution, has often been neglected or skimmed over in favour of the more exciting advances which were to come in Western Europe from the sixteenth century onwards. Too often science in Arabia has been seen as nothing more than a holding operation. The area has been viewed as a giant storehouse for previously discovered scientific results, keeping them until they could be passed on for use in the West. But this is, of course, a travesty of the truth. Certainly the Arabs did inherent Greek science----and some Indian and Chinese science too, for that matter----and later passed it on to the West. But this is far from being all they did. They interpreted what they inherited, commented on it and added valuable analyses of what it contained, and, above all, they made many original contributions of their own. Indeed, Arabia produced some original scientific minds; it nurtured them and encouraged them to make their own individual contributions. So when we think of the West's indebtedness to Arabic culture, it is important to appreciate both aspects, the original work as well as the transmitted ideas of an earlier age.

-- Colin A. Ronan, Science: Its History and Development Among the World's Cultures (1982), pp. 202-203.


After the fall of the Roman Empire, the heritage of Greek science was preserved and extended by the Arabs. In the seventh century they overran Asia minor, Persia, North Africa, and Spain., and from the ninth to the eleventh centuries the civilization of Islam far eclipsed that of Christendom. The streets of Cordoba were lit by lamps and paved, amenities not to be found in London and Paris for another seven centuries. Nor could any building in the West match the refinement and beauty of the Alhambra, the Moorish palace of Granada, with its cisterns and running water, its slender columns and ornamented arches.

-- A. E. E. McKenzie, The Major Achievements of Science(1960), p. 8.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

You're making a pretty long-winded case for your own stupidity. Three replies to my one comment? Somebody's riled up.

Conflating my few typing errors to parade as grammar mistakes in your first response? Cheap, and yet a further example of the leftist inability to argue rationally for my collection. Thanks.

Perhaps you do believe, as Obama does, that America was attacked on 9/11/2001 by Islamic fundamentalists because we don't give them credit for Babylonian math and Chinese ink quills.

It's perfectly your right to believe so. It's out of bounds for you think that is anything other than stupidity.

psi bond said...

Being all riled up, which makes you come back with the same arguments again and again, your vision is clouded, beamish.

Lack of agreement between subject and verb when using 'none' is a common grammatical error. Pretending it is a mere typing error is another example of your disingenuity. Quoth the Bible: My list runneth over.

Perhaps you do believe, as Obama does, that America was attacked on 9/11/2001 by Islamic fundamentalists because we don't give them credit for Babylonian math and Chinese ink quills.

Perhaps it was because rightwingers won't give them credit for ingenuity in the civilizational arts and don't know or care who al-Khwarizmi or Avicenna were.

It's perfectly your right to believe so. It's out of bounds for you think that is anything other than stupidity.

It is out of bounds for a rightwinger to tell me what is out of bounds for me to think.

"Stupidity" in politicians is relative to the political orientation of the observer.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

Again, it is Obama's and your right to believe the Islamic world from Indonesia to Arkansas and all points and ethnic groups betwixt and between produce terrorists motivated by Islam because nobody gives Arabs "proper" credit for not destroying every scientific advance of the cultures they conquered. It may well be your leftist motivation to leave no stone unturned in the quest to have all leftists recognized as imbeciles that has you running back and forth between defending and denying that Obama claimed civilization owes a debt to Islam.

Characteristic to both Obama's and your Wikipedia scouring ignorance is the belief that "Islam" and "Arab ethnicity" are interchangeable, hence the pitiful attempt to soothe irate Muslims around the world (i.e. the "Islamic world") with a convoluted case for owing a debt to a few Arabs who studied the texts of conquered societies instead of burning them.

Cry foul all you must, but I didn't make your arguments an example of imbecility. You did that all by yourself.

Once more for posterity:

Obama said, "As a student of history, I know civilization's debt to Islam."

Whether he or you mean Islam the religion itself, or Islam the societies in which Islam is practiced is irrelevant. Both statements are imbecilic.

What is Islamic about algebra? What is Islamic about calligraphy? How about magnetic compasses?

What is the difference between Islamic algebra and non-Islamic algebra? Can you look at a compass and prove it points north with the Koran?

Maybe you can, but the non-imbecilic world is laughing at you.

psi bond said...

If you can calm yourself, beamish, you will be able to understand that your difficulties stem from misinterpretations. Even the source of most of my sources for factual information. It has been not Wikipedia but scholarly books from my personal library. You fail to rationally account for the wide differences between your statements and those of the scholars.

I do not run "back and forth between defending and denying that Obama claimed civilization owes a debt to Islam". You misinterpret the importance of context. 'Islam' is very much a context-sensitive word. In a discussion of religion, the word means 'the Islamic religion'. But in a discussion that refers to the mastery of pens and printing and other achievements, it means 'Islamic civilization'. Easy enough to understand. Yet you have based your myriad posts zealously arguing that Obama is stupid on misunderstanding exactly that. You need to try harder to understand it. Willfully, you misinterpret the difference between what you prefer to believe I said and what I actually said. And you do the same, of course, with Obama.

Once more for posterity:

Once more for your personal enlightenment, beamish, generously assuming that is possible:

Obama said, "As a student of history, I know civilization's debt to Islam."

'Islam' meaning, in this instance, the civilization that flourished in Islamic societies. As a University of Oklahoma professor of the history of science said, "Nothing in Europe could hold a candle to what was going on in the Islamic world until about 1600."

Whether he or you mean Islam the religion itself, or Islam the societies in which Islam is practiced is irrelevant. Both statements are imbecilic.

Only in your mind, beamish. The imbecilic reading you promote is clownish in nature and intent, while the commonsensical reading makes a great deal of sense. Western scholars say civilization owes a debt to Islam. A scholar at Harvard said that the intellectual meeting of Arabia and Greece was one of the greatest events in history. "Its scale and consequences are enormous not just for Islam but for Europe and the world."

What is Islamic about algebra? What is Islamic about calligraphy? How about magnetic compasses?

This argument that you now bring up is not related to your previous claim. Science, of course, is international. All scientists speak the same language.

That is not to say that one culture may not encourage the growth of science more than another. Islam has traditionally encouraged science and learning.

What is the difference between Islamic algebra and non-Islamic algebra? Can you look at a compass and prove it points north with the Koran?

What will you try next, beamish?

Compasses don't point toward Mecca? You repeat yourself. Hence I will repeat: Science, of course, is international. All scientists speak the same language.

Incontestably, science is the common heritage of all humankind. The rise of a scientific tradition in Islam was crucial to the development of universal science in the pre-modern world.

Maybe you can, but the non-imbecilic world is laughing at you.

The non-imbecilic world is not made up of extreme rightwingers who can believe ahistorically that the universality of science proves it to be absurd that scientific progress can be fueled to a greater degree by support from a particular regional set of social, economic, and intellectual conditions.

Your preposterous conviction that the president and everyone else opposed to what you believe are imbeciles--- it is that that the non-crazy world is laughing at, beamish.

psi bond said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
psi bond said...

Yet more illuminating a propos reading from my library:

In his book [Islam and Science (1991)], Dr. [Pervez] Hoodbhoy [a Pakistani physicist and professor at Quaid-e-Azam University in Islamabad] recounts how Dr. [Abdus] Salam [the first Muslim to win the Nobel Prize in Physics], Dr. Steven Weinberg, now at the University of Texas, and Dr. Sheldon Glashow at Harvard shared the Nobel Prize for showing that electromagnetism and the so-called weak nuclear force are different manifestations of a single force. Dr. Salam and Dr. Weinberg had devised the same contribution to that theory independently, he wrote, despite the fact that Dr. Weinberg is an atheist while Dr. Salam was a Muslim who prayed regularly and quoted from the Koran. Dr. Salam confirmed the account in his introduction to the book, describing himself as "geographically and ideologically remote" from Dr. Weinberg.

-- Dennis Overbye, in Natalie Angier, ed., The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2002, p. 217.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

If Obama meant "civilization owes a debt to Arab scholars" then why didn't he say so? Quite simply, it's because he didn't mean that.

The fact is, he went to Cairo to assure his fellow children of Islam that as the President of an Muslim country like the United States of America, it's his duty to declare jihad against negative stereotypes of Islam.

His speech was billed as a goodwill gesture towards people of the Islamic faith - even going to the region where Islam was first revealed to the world as the faith of Arab conquerors (Alexandria isn't that far from Cairo) - indeed, it can not be said that Obama went to Egypt to talk about the universality of science. Obama went to the Middle East to declare the United States a Muslim country, and pledged his administration to removing obstacles to Muslims in donating charity ("zakat") despite current restrictions upon funding organizations tied to raising money for Islamic terrorist groups. Apparently the fact that there are Islamic organizations not currently financing terrorism that American Muslims are free to donate to isn't good enough, and Obama will see to it that Hamas', Hezbollah's, and Al Qaeda's jihads are not missing out on American largesse. Obama truly was seeking to repay America's part in civilization's "debt owed to Islam."

It may well be the confluence of historically ignorant teleprompter speech writers and a self-impressing President that resulted in such a hackneyed piece of drivel coming out of Obama's pie hole in Cairo. It can't be said, political hacks and faithfully bias media sycophants aside, that Obama achieved rapprochement with the culture that produced Osama Bin Laden by thanking them for ink pens.

psi bond said...

If Obama meant "civilization owes a debt to Arab scholars" then why didn't he say so? Quite simply, it's because he didn't mean that.

No, he meant that civilization owes a debt to Islam, which nurtured and extended science when it fell into decline in the West. And, in fact, he said as much.

The fact is, he went to Cairo to assure his fellow children of Islam that as the President of an Muslim country like the United States of America, it's his duty to declare jihad against negative stereotypes of Islam.

The fact is you are untruthful about why he spoke in Cairo. He went "to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world, one based on mutual interest and mutual respect, and one based upon the truth that America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition."

He said he considers it part of his responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear. But also that repeating vile stereotypes about Jews is deeply wrong. To be even-handed, you should mention that too. He also declared that "America is not the crude stereotype of a self-interested empire. The United States has been one of the greatest sources of progress that the world has ever known." He did not say that United States is a Muslim country, but rather that millions of Muslims live in the U.S. and "enjoy incomes and educational levels that are higher than the American average."

Unwittingly, you willfully misrepresent his speech for the amusement of rational people. It is unnecessary to prove that your view of what happened in Cairo is extreme spin. You proved that long ago.

Unable to make a rational argument that proves your point that Obama was talking about the religion and not the civilization, you now disingenuously proceed to change the subject.

Osama bin Laden warned Muslims not to trust anything Obama would say. Hence, you and bin Laden stand shoulder to shoulder, as it were, in rapprochement.

Do you doubt that scientific progress can be fueled to a greater degree by support from a particular regional set of social, economic, and intellectual conditions?

Do you doubt Western scholars who say the rise of a scientific tradition in Islam was crucial to the development of universal science in the pre-modern world?

If so, why?

beamish said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
beamish said...

PsiBond,

Two days prior to Obama's speech in Cairo, he stated that "if you actually took the number of Muslim Americans, we'd be one of the largest Muslim countries in the world." While I'm not sure if this was typical Obama hyperbole similar to his "inflate your tires" campaign nonsense, or if he was appealing to have America admitted into the Organization of the Islamic Conference on better grounds than Guayana or Suriname, the fact remains that if he wanted to speak to the "Islamic world" where the largest population of Muslims live he would have gone to India.

I'll skip your tedious dithering between "Obama meant Islam the religion" and "Obama meant Islam the civilization" until you decide which ridiculous position to stick with.

Your new questions:

Do you doubt that scientific progress can be fueled to a greater degree by support from a particular regional set of social, economic, and intellectual conditions?

No. I doubt that thanking the Islamic world for ink pens will stop Muslims from bombing pizza parlors in Israel, blowing up nightclubs in Bali, or assaulting hotel patrons in Mumbai, or blowing up trains in Madrid, or slaughtering animists and Christians in the Sudan, or hijacking transport vessels off the coast of Eastern Africa, shooting up military recruiters in Arkansas, or any other similar contributions to civilization for which we owe a debt to Islam.


Do you doubt Western scholars who say the rise of a scientific tradition in Islam was crucial to the development of universal science in the pre-modern world?


I doubt that Islam is responsible for scientific advances made by people who happened to be Muslims.

If so, why?


And here's the crux of your misunderstanding. A full immersion of why I don't credit Islam for ink pens (and why I don't credit Taoism for ramen noodles) requires you to detach yourself from your leftist preconceptions and messianic pro-Obama religious biases and enter where no leftist dare tread - the forbidden realm of logic.

psi bond said...

Two days prior to Obama's speech in Cairo, he stated that "if you actually took the number of Muslim Americans, we'd be one of the largest Muslim countries in the world." .....

Right you are, beamish. Indubitably. Ineluctably. Obama went to Cairo to tell those ragheads America is a white-supremacist country, whose culture is Western Europe's, that, having sprung fully formed from the mind of Zooss (sp?), owes a dollar to no one. Nor anything to anyone. Never mind that appearances are deceiving. Subliminal, cryptic instances are receiving. Never mind that he said America is a Muslim country the way that New York is often is said to be Israeli country since it has the most Israelis after Israel. Never mind that it was a caual remark unworthy of intense analysis. Never mind that he said America is a Muslim country two days before and not in the Cairo speech. You can't always be right.

No doubt, Osama bin Laden would claim something similar. Obama went to Cairo to tell the ragheads no thanks for the pens they mastered. We have computers now and can sign with graphics tablets with no fear of plagiarism. And they better know what they can do with their Allgowizme.

I'll skip your tedious dithering between "Obama meant Islam the religion" and "Obama meant Islam the civilization" until you decide which ridiculous position to stick with.

You show a tiresome inability to understand that it was decided at the outset. I have always said he meant Islam the civilization, while you have said illogcally he meant Islam the religion when talking about civilizations.

Your new questions:

Do you doubt that scientific progress can be fueled to a greater degree by support from a particular regional set of social, economic, and intellectual conditions?

No. I doubt that thanking the Islamic world for ink pens will stop Muslims from bombing pizza parlors in Israel, blowing up nightclubs in Bali, or assaulting hotel patrons in Mumbai, or blowing up trains in Madrid, or slaughtering animists and Christians in the Sudan, or hijacking transport vessels off the coast of Eastern Africa, shooting up military recruiters in Arkansas, or any other similar contributions to civilization for which we owe a debt to Islam.

These are the negative stereotypes of which Obama spoke. Smearing Islam's rich intellectual history with the violent actions of militant Muslim fundamentalists is vile. Such stereotypes are wrongly applied to a whole civilization. American civilization should not be judged by the lynching and humiliation of blacks in South. James von Brunn and other white supremacists and Holocaust deniers do not define America.

I doubt that Islam is responsible for scientific advances made by people who happened to be Muslims.

That is the answer to a question I did not ask.

Do you doubt Western scholars who say the rise of a scientific tradition in Islam was crucial to the development of universal science in the pre-modern world?

If so, why?

And here's the crux of your misunderstanding. A full immersion of why I don't credit Islam for ink pens [and the precursor to modern algebra] (and why I don't credit Taoism for ramen noodles) requires you to detach yourself from your leftist preconceptions and biased and enter where no leftist dare tread - the forbidden realm of logic.

In other words, you're discomfited by liberals' preference for reason over fear, and their lack of acceptance of your vile stereotypes. As with Muslims, they are not like you, so they're imbeciles, huh?

Rather than answer the question, you vented your irrational anti-left bias.

The crux is that you are disingenuously seeking to evade the question. No realm is forbidden to me by righties.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

Any one reading your responses in this thread can see that my belief that leftists are incapable of rational thought is fully defensible.

The fact that you and Obama believe Islam deserves credit for ink pens over violent acts done by Muslims in accordance with how Muslims themselves interpret their own Islamic religious texts pretty much nails my assessment as spot on.

Now that your defeat (which came previously when you blamed right-wing internet posts for Islamic terrorism) has been mercilessly dragged out to the point that you are babbling incoherently about white supremacists, I think now is a good place to stop responding to this aging thread and go reveal your inherent leftist stupidity on another.

Cheers.

psi bond said...

Any impartial reader of your posts here, beamish, can readily see that you are a habitual maker of false claims. Your absurd claim that only righties are capable of rational thought underscores your extreme irrationality, along with a penchant for vilification of those not like you.

The conflation you try to promote of the rich heritage of Islamic civilization with the despicable acts against Americans by a small group of violent Muslims is the most nasty sort of demonization that liberals repudiate.

What your blathering here indicates you object to is my pointing out that rightwing white supremacists and Holocaust deniers do not define America. If you find that statement offensive, I am not worried, beamish, for I stand by it. I also stand by the statement that rightwing posters who perpetuate vile stereotypes of Muslims on the Internet may be endangering America. If that statement bothers you, well, too bad. I believe it is probably true.

I think now is a good place to stop responding to this aging thread and go reveal your inherent leftist stupidity on another.

By all means, do what you feel compelled to do, beamish. However, as is evident in this thread, all your prodigious effort will only reveal your severe limitations in thought and argument.

Congratulations on finding a friend, albeit a strange bedfellow–––Osama bin Laden.

Good luck!

beamish said...

PsiBond,

I didn't expect you to accept your total loss in the debate graciously. Imbecilic leftists such as yourself rarely do.

Mischaracterizing my belief to be that only right-wingers are capable of rational thought is an error. Whether or not you made that error to provide yet another example of the left's monopoly on illiteracy I'll leave to the audience to decide. I believe there are plenty of people capable of rational thought. Leftists, such as yourself, are not.

As far as friendship with Osama Bin Laden - do let me know when Osama Bin Laden gives up believing in global warming and calling for the toppling of the Saudi royal family as Democrats are prone to do, okay dear?

psi bond said...

I didn't expect you to accept your total loss in the debate graciously. Imbecilic leftists such as yourself rarely do.

I don’t expect you, beamish, to take gracefully your exposure here as a blustering promoter of false claims and vile stereotypes. Hence, it is probable you’ll keep limping back to this thread to offer, as if it were needed, further proof to that effect.

Mischaracterizing my belief to be that only right-wingers are capable of rational thought is an error. Whether or not you made that error to provide yet another example of the left's monopoly on illiteracy I'll leave to the audience to decide. I believe there are plenty of people capable of rational thought. Leftists, such as yourself, are not.

Extremists like you shamelessly try to score points by stripping away contexts. The average good reader can note the error you make in willfully overlooking the fact that the relevant context in this case involves contests between those on the left and the right and your claims about the former. In that context, I observe that you always take a stance that hypothesizes a total monopoly on rational thought for your side. This exclusionary type of posturing demonstrates a rather troubling kinship with the Nazis' propaganda denigrating the mental faculties of a large groups of people that they despised. Your absolute condemnations of both liberal thought and the richness of Islamic civilization are eerily evocative of that vicious imbecility.

As far as friendship with Osama Bin Laden - do let me know when Osama Bin Laden gives up believing in global warming and calling for the toppling of the Saudi royal family as Democrats are prone to do, okay dear?

It's swell, beamish, that your fiendish friend Osama Bin Laden is giving you talking points, albeit dubious ones, to wield against Democrats. Congrats!

beamish said...

PsiBond,

Next time Hillary Clinton goes to Saudi Arabia to speak on the Bin Laden family dime, make sure she gives thanks to Prophet Muhammad for ink pens.

psi bond said...

Next time Hillary Clinton goes to Saudi Arabia to speak on the Bin Laden family dime, make sure she gives thanks to Prophet Muhammad for ink pens.

If we are playing the Guilt-by-Association game now, the bin Laden family had close ties to the Bush administration.

As I predicted, you've come galumphing back, beamish, to promote more smears from rightwing blogs.

Next time you use your computer, thank al-Khwarizmi for basic algorithms embedded in its software.

beamish said...

PsiBond,

You honestly didn't think calling me a "friend" of John Kerry campaign spokesman Osama Bin Laden would go unanswered did you?

It isn't a "smear from right-wing blogs" to acknowledge Osama Bin Laden's announcements actually do contain political statements on global warming and anti-globalization as well as support for Democratic Party candidates.

Maybe Osama Bin Laden's political leftism has you and Obama fraternally overlooking his adherence to Islam to think he and other Muslims are genocidally mad over nobody giving a damn who invented the ink pen.

psi bond said...

You honestly didn't think calling me a "friend" of John Kerry campaign spokesman Osama Bin Laden would go unanswered did you?

In fact, I honestly did not think it would go unanswered. I actually predicted it would not.

You and Osama bin Laden should be friends: Both of you want to see President Obama fail. What is it they say? The enemy of my enemy is my ....

It isn't a "smear from right-wing blogs" to acknowledge Osama Bin Laden's announcements actually do contain political statements on global warming and anti-globalization as well as support for Democratic Party candidates.

In fact, the "smear from right-wing blogs" was a reference to your reference to Hillary. But smearing liberals for supposedly believing, along with bin Laden, in global warming and anti-globalization is also found on those blogs. Never mind that there are rightwingers who are believers in global warming----perhaps most notably, Pat Robertson----and are opponents of globalization.

Maybe Osama Bin Laden's political leftism has you and Obama fraternally overlooking his adherence to Islam to think he and other Muslims are genocidally mad over nobody giving a damn who invented the ink pen.

Here are some facts for you to soberly consider, assuming you're able to do so, beamish: Lewis Waterman, an American insurance broker, patented the first practical fountain pen in 1884. Although some think Galileo had the design for a ballpoint pen, its invention (in 1938) is usually credited to László Bíró, a Hungarian newspaper editor. Quill pens were in use for centuries. Muslims do not claim to have invented them, and Obama made no claim that they did. The claim that Obama did so is an invention of rightwingers.

Radical Muslims say they were given "a taste of humiliation" (bin Laden's words in a letter to Americans in October 2002). This may be due in some part to what they feel about the slurs of American rightwingers who refuse to accord any respect to Islamic civilization.

Most rightwingers as well as bin Laden's followers want to have the state made one under God. They all want to see the laws of the state consistent with the divine laws of their god. And they share the belief that, when "the path of God" is abandoned, the state will decay. Liberals have always been staunchly opposed to the merging of religion and the state.

Extreme rightwingers and the bin Laden crowd also share an unapologetically intolerant mindset to the effect of "Join Me or You're an Imbecile" and "Join Me or Die".

beamish said...

Yawn.

psi bond said...

beamish: Yawn.

Thanks.

That's exactly the attitude I was talking about.

beamish said...

zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

psi bond said...

Thanks again