Libertarian Leanings is a new column by by Peter Burrows, who blogs at silvercityburro.com and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Grant County Beat.
Studies in Islam: The Self-Destructive Koran and the Man Who Would Be God, Muhammad - PART ONE by Peter Burrows email@example.com - silvercityburro.com. 8/20/17 (The Koran used for and referenced in this article, unless otherwise noted, is the Khan-Hilali translation published by Darussalam, revised edition, March 1999.)
After the first few lines of mortal prayer, devout Muslims believe every word in the Koran is the immortal word of their God, Allah. Muslims hold this belief in spite of the many contradictions in the Koran. Their rationalization of these contradictions should lead any moderately skeptical person to the conclusion that Islam is a fraud and that Muhammad, the greatest con man the world has ever seen, was the source of the “revelations,” not Allah.
Dear Southern Poverty Law Center: Please add my blog to your list of Hate Groups. Thank you, Peter Burrows 6/2/17 firstname.lastname@example.org - silvercityburro.com
Rodney Dangerfield had it good. “I don't get no respect,” he'd say. Ha! El Burro don't even get no DISRESPECT! Let me explain.
The Southern Poverty Law Center, SPLC, is a “progressive” organization which, according to its web site, fights hate, teaches tolerance, seeks justice and battles the forces of evil, a.k.a. Republicans. (OK, I made that one up.). They have for years maintained a list of “hate groups” and a list of people they call “extremists.” Some groups and people on their lists almost all of us would agree belong on those lists, such as the KKK and Louis Farrakhan.
Started in 1971, the SPLC was formed to provide legal backing for those blacks and whites fighting to end segregation and abuses of civil rights so prevalent in the South in those days. My understanding is that they were very successful and left a legacy all Americans should be proud of.
However, like so many other institutions formed to address a specific problem, the SPLC continues to soldier on in spite of having outlived its usefulness. One of its new missions is to silence critics of Islam.
Ironically, the vitriol, hostility and animosity the SPLC directs at those who openly oppose Islam has turned the SPLC itself into one of the very hate groups it so vigorously disapproves of.
By my count, the SPLC lists 47 “Anti-Muslim” hate groups in America, which is an inaccurate description of those I am familiar with, all of whom are not anti-Muslim but rather anti-Islam, an important distinction.
The SPLC puts these groups on the same list as the despicable KKK, a weak-minded equivalence. Also, they would like us to think that the growth in “anti-Muslim” groups is an ominous sign of increasing intolerance, when it is actually a sign of increasing awareness of the threat posed by devout followers of Islam.
The following “anti-Muslim” groups listed by the SPLC are definitely NOT hate groups by any objective standard. Check them out and judge for yourself: ACT For America; Jihad Watch; The Refugee Resettlement Watch; Political Islam; Understanding The Threat; Sultan Knish, a Blog by Daniel Greenfield; The Clarion Project; and Center for Security Policy. There are many more.
By calling the above anti-Islamic groups Hate Groups, the SPLC is guilty of monumental stupidity. They are defending the religion of Islam, a 1,400 year-old cult that has been, and continues to be, the most destructive, most murderous and longest-lived hate group ever to exist.
I would be honored to join the above list of “anti-Muslim” hate groups, but so far not a peep from the SPLC. Sigh. Please, show a little disrespect, OK?
I've written 19 articles on the foulness that is Islam (see below). All of these articles can be found at silvercityburro.com, and all, with one exception, were posted by The Grant County Beat. (See “Columns, Libertarian Leanings” for my most recent.) The one exception was “Slandering the Prophet,” which wasn't posted because the publisher of The Grant County Beat was worried it would cause some devout Muslim to behead me --- and her too!
What does it say about our country that people are afraid to exercise their free speech rights because that might offend somebody who would then think they have the right to kill you? Offensive speech should never be condoned, but as a general rule it should be protected unless it incites violence against others. Ironically, the Koran is full of just such incitements, and from Allah, no less.
Sadly, in the opinion of some, an imam quoting the Koran in a Mosque is exercising both freedom of speech and freedom of religion, while somebody on the street corner critically quoting the same passages from the Koran could be guilty of “hate speech” and guilty of inciting violence AGAINST THEMSELVES. In other words, the victim is the criminal!
Why is it so difficult for so many people to recognize the simple truth that the First Amendment does not protect criminality? You cannot falsely yell FIRE! in a crowded theater and you cannot murder people because they reject your religion. You cannot have four wives, kill homosexuals, stone to death adulterers, flog lesbians, slay pagans and kill your children and grandchildren with impunity. All Islamic law, folks, all ALLAH's LAW!!
Why are we continuing to allow people who believe the above to immigrate to our country? Crazy, isn't it?
Well, enough of that. Back to my request to get on the SPLC list. I say: Keep devout Muslims out of our country because many of them will be compelled by the evil religion of Islam to murder non-Muslims.
Don't you think that should do it? Help me out folks. Report me to www.splcenter.org/reporthate. Tell them I'm BAAAAD!
I need this because I don't have much to show for my time here on Earth. Lots of folks have a page or two of praiseworthy accomplishments. Me? Not even a paragraph. A sentence or two? Nope. That's why I need the SPLC to put me on their hate list. Then, when I approach the Pearly Gates, I won't be summarily dismissed by Saint Peter.
I can hear him now: “Burro!? What are you doing up here? Why, look at this list of sins! It goes on forever, and, and ------ Whoa! Wait a minute. You were put on the SPLC's hate list for WHAT? For calling Islam EVIL?? Well, come on in, son. JESUS WANTS TO SHAKE YOUR HAND!!”
Something like that.
Islam articles at www.silvercityburro.com
Monsters From The Id, 2/25/14
Groucho, Chico and Islams's Useful Idiots 12/4/14
Islam 101, Part One 12/18/14
Islam 101, Part Two 12/27/14
Islam 101 Part Three 1/6/15
Islam For Smart Dummies 1/11/15
Islam 101 Part Four 1/18/15
Move Over, Neville Chamberlain 4/6/15
Slandering The Prophet 4/26/15
The Deadly and Suicidal Side Effects of the First Amendment 7/19/15
The Gathering Storm, 21st Century Version 8/22/15
Memo to Clueless Republicans: Start Quoting the Koran 11/29/15
Why I'm An Islamophobe 1/5/16
Hate Speech, Congress and The Prophet 1/28/16
Hate Speech, Congress and The Prophet, part 2 2/20/16
The FBI and me 7/17/16
Studies in Islam: Abrogation 9/25/16
Does the ACLU Condone Killing Homosexuals and Flogging Lesbians? 3/18/17
Manchester: A Devout Muslim Obeying Allah 5/23/17
By Peter Burrows email@example.com 5/23/17
As this is being written, authorities have determined that a Muslim suicide bomber was responsible for killing 22 people and injuring over 100 at a concert in Manchester, England.
We should all be horrified, but none of us should be surprised. He was merely following the Koran. Devout Muslims believe the Koran is God's timeless guide for humanity that sets forth laws for Muslims to obey. Furthermore, the Koran commands that God's messenger, Muhammad, be emulated and obeyed. (See sura 33:20 and sura 4:80 in the Koran. Sura means “chapter.”)
People who think Islam is religion of peace should read sura 9 in the Koran. It is virtually the last chapter and unquestionably the most important chapter in the Koran. It's a chapter I'm sure the Manchester bomber read and obeyed.
For example, 9:41 commands: “March forth whether light or heavy, and strive in the way of Allah with your belongings and your lives.” The Manchester bomber could have jumped in a car or truck and driven through a crowd of infidels, but he chose instead to get a little “heavier” and built himself a bomb, probably following directions published at least twice by al-Qaeda.
His own death would have been a “trivial” concern. Sura 9:38 says “Believers! What is amiss with you that when it is said to you: ‘March forth in the cause of Allah,' you cling heavily to the earth? Do you prefer the worldly life to the Hereafter? Know well that all the enjoyment of this world, in comparison with the Hereafter, is trivial.” Sura 9:39 drives the point home: “If you do not march forth, Allah will chastise you grievously --.”
The fact that the bombing occurred at a concert starring a female vocalist should also not come as a surprise. Muhammad did not like music, and he especially warned against listening to women singing. Too seductive, don't you know, for the weak Muslim male. The Sunni book of Islamic law, Reliance of the Traveller (sic), r40.1(2), quotes Muhammad: “On the Day of Resurrection, Allah will pour molten lead into the ears of whoever sits listening to a songstress.”
You might think the Manchester bomber was usurping one of Allah's Judgment Day prerogatives, but nowhere in any Islamic text does it say something such as, “Vengeance is mine, sayeth Allah.” In fact, I know of one verse, 9:14, there may be more, where Allah, referring to apostates, commands: “Make war on them. ALLAH WILL MAKE WAR ON THEM THROUGH YOU and humiliate them.” (My emphasis.)
In my opinion, there is much in the religion of Islam that encouraged the Manchester bomber and nothing that discouraged him. Apologists for Islam might want to ponder the venue the bomber chose and the lack of any musical accomplishments from, or by, Muslims. No Mozart, no Ellington, no nothing.
I'll wager there are quite a few infidels out there like myself who have spent many a pleasant hour “listening to a songstress.” I've fallen in love with quite a few, starting with June Christy (damn, I'm old) and Joan Baez, and more recently Sissel and Rene Fleming. Allah will need buckets of molten lead for yours truly.
Muhammad's songstress warning is further proof that he was no “Prophet” but merely an all-too-human, evil little man, albeit one of extraordinary charisma and intellect. In my opinion, listening to Rene Fleming cannot be a sin when her voice is manifest proof that God exists.
By Peter Burrows firstname.lastname@example.org - silvercityburro.com 5/20/17
Last Thursday, Public Service of New Mexico (PNM) held a public meeting to get input on the company's tentative plans to eliminate the use of coal by 2031. There were about 60 people there, but my guess is that at least half were PNM employees or people associated with PNM's coal operations.
Of those locals who made public comments, only three, by my count, favored PNM continuing to use coal: Chamber of Commerce Director Scott Terry; the Mayor of Santa Clara, Richard Bauch; and myself. If you read Christine Steele's coverage of the event in The Daily Press, you will see she covered comments by Terry and Bauch, but nothing on my comments.
Ms. Steele, whom I met a number of years ago when she worked at the Sun-News, probably thought what I had to say just wasn't worth the cost of the newsprint. Sigh. Call me Pete Dangerfield.
She did cover remarks by Tom Manning, director of Citizens for Fair Rates and The Environment, to the effect that if PNM didn't expense writing off the coal plants, then PNM's customers “would see the savings in the transition from coal to renewables immediately,” to quote Ms. Steele‘s article.
I spoke after Manning, and by chance my comments addressed his assumption that renewables are cheaper than fossil fuels, with a request that PNM publish estimates of what it would cost to go 100% renewable. This would require lots of energy storage and the cost would be huge.
Environmentalists claim, usually in good faith, that renewables are cheaper than fossil fuels, right now, sans any “social cost” of carbon. They are wrong. Look at your electricity bill. You will see you have a “renewable energy rider” that increases your cost, not a “renewable energy credit” that reduces your cost.
The real-world cost of renewables is something PNM apparently doesn't want to publicize.
I wonder: If I had introduced myself as the Founder and Chairman of “Citizens For Energy Justice,” would Ms. Steele have given me a little print space? Hmmmm. (Donations to the above are NOT deductible. Libertarians don't believe taxpayers should subsidize special interest groups. Cash preferred :~)
Below is the draft of my comments:
Thank you, My name is Peter Burrows. I have been a PNM customer for 11 years. I have a couple of requests.
First, I urge you to continue to use coal to the extent justified by quantifiable objective costs, not highly subjective costs such as the estimated costs of carbon externalities. I realize you are being implored to eliminate coal in order to save the world, but you should put this into context. The most recent Greenpeace/Sierra Club survey of global coal-fired utilities, “Boom and Bust 2017,” shows that if India and China build no more coal plants and only 20% of the coal-fired utilities in the planning stage in the rest of the world are actually built, by 2031 new coal generating capacity worldwide --NEW capacity--will still equal 434 times PNM's San Juan/Four Corners generation (497MW + 265MW, and 126 times as much as both plants' total combined capacity: 1,848 MW SJGS + 770MW FCPP). While NM's environmentalists want to save the world from coal, it appears much of the rest of the world just doesn't want to be saved. Even Japan is adding over 21 gigawatts of coal power.
Secondly, the claim that renewables are cheaper than coal is just plain false. I don't have time to go into the details on why “Levelized Cost Of Electricity (LCOE)” calculations are misleading other than to quote an MIT study from March of 2016: “ The LCOE ---fails to capture the true cost of generation, and merely represents the cost of serving different parts of the load curve.” (Mapping The Economics of U.S. Coal Power and the Rise of Renewables- MIT March 2016.)
This means that solar generating costs at high-noon on a sunny day may be cheaper than coal, but in order to provide electricity at midnight, solar generation must be far greater than required at high-noon and the excess must be stored. This is very expensive.
PNM has been operating the 500KW Prosperity Energy Storage Project for a number of years now. It was once touted as “the nation's first solar storage facility fully integrated into a utility's power grid.” (Renewable Energy World, “New Mexico Utility Adding Wind, Solar and Geothermal to Its Power Mix, by Barry Cassell 3/2/15.)
I assume you have lots of cost data from this project and can provide us with an estimate of what our utility bills would be if PNM was 100% renewables-with-storage. I suspect it would validate what Bill Gates said about the cost of going to all renewable electricity: “Beyond astronomical.”
And this is my second request: I would like you to publicize such cost estimates. I would like to know what my bill would be if PNM generated electricity 100% from renewables. TYVM.
Finally, PNM has a program called “Sky Blue” by which customers agree to have their bills increased to help pay for the extra cost of renewables. Extra cost? Yes, indeed. Check your utility bills for the renewable energy rider. Participation in this program has been declining over the years, from 13,000 residents in 2011 to 3600 in 2013 to who knows how many today. (At the time I spoke, I had not heard back from PNM's home office on the current number of Sky Blue customers. Within minutes of completing my comments, both a PNM representative in the audience and the home office called. Both had the same number: 4068. Higher than I expected but still far lower than 2011.) This indicates demand for renewables is being driven by mandates and subsidies, not customers.
There are two things I would like PNM to do with this program. One, offer to publicize the names of participants if they agree. We want to celebrate such selfless visionaries, don't we? Second, I'd like to see you offer a “NO Sky Blue” program where people, such as myself, can sign up to have our bills singled out for reductions of the renewable rider. I realize most in this room think an old, evil global warming-denier like myself should pay for my sins, but I, of course, only think it's “electricity justice” if those who want renewables pay for them. TYVM.
Occasionally in life, circumstances align in such a way as to make even an atheist say, GǣHmmmm. Looks like the Hand of God at work.Gǥ
Such an epiphany will bless any disinterested soul who views Patrick Moore's 40 minute speech, GǣShould We Celebrate Carbon Dioxide?Gǥ available on You Tube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0Z5FdwWw_c. The speech was delivered October 14, 2015, to a meeting of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, a London-based think tank. You can also find a transcript at http://www.thegwpf.org/patrick-moore-should-we-celebrate-carbon-dioxide/.
It's a remarkable speech with an absolutely stunning, irrefutable conclusion: We shouldn't be limiting carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, WE SHOULD BE INCREASING THEM. In fact, had not humans begun adding CO2 to the atmosphere by burning hydrocarbon fuels, all life on earth could have ended in less than two million years, which geologically speaking, is damn near right now. As Moore says, Gǣ-- if the Earth were 24 hours old we were at 38 seconds to midnight when we reversed the trend toward the End Times.Gǥ
As I will explain, this was the second time in the history of the world that something stepped in to reverse a cataclysmic decline in atmospheric CO2. First, a little bit about Moore. While getting his PhD in ecology in 1971, he joined a group of environmental activists that became Greenpeace, now one of the largest environmental organizations in the world. In the mid 1980s he found himself the only Greenpeace director with a formal science education, and being a man of principle, he resigned when the organization began to ignore science in favor of whatever the emotional Gǣcause du jourGǥ was. (My interpretation, accurate though.)
Moore's comments on CO2 and climate reveal that over the past 540 million years there has been no positive correlation of temperatures to CO2 levels and a couple of glaring examples of inverse correlation. A similar conclusion can be reached looking at only the last 120 years. The importance of CO2 is not in its influence on climate, which is negligible, but its importance to life itself.
The accepted estimate of CO2 levels in the atmosphere at the beginning of the industrial revolution some 200 years ago is 280 parts per million, ppm, or about one-quarter of one percent of the atmosphere. This was not much above the 180 ppm that occurred during the peak of the last ice age about 18,000 years ago, which Moore says was, Gǣ --extremely likely the lowest level CO2 has been in the history of the earth. This is only 30 ppm above the level that plants begin to die.Gǥ
Plants begin to DIE? Yep. Atmospheric carbon dioxide is an essential plant food. No CO2 equals no plants equals no life. Period. Even at today's 400 ppm, plants are relatively starved for CO2 and need, Moore says, an optimum level of 2000 ppm.
Moore shows that the last 150 million years have seen a steady drawdown of CO2 in the atmosphere, on average 37,000 tons per year, as declining volcanic activity has meant volcanic emissions of CO2 have not been enough to replace the CO2 consumed by, and removed forever from the atmosphere by'shellfish!
About 500 million years ago, soft-bodied sea creatures began to evolve the ability to capture CO2, combine it with calcium, and form a shell. As trillions of these creatures of many, many forms would die and settle, they formed huge deposits of carbonaceous sediments. The white cliffs of Dover are perhaps the best-known example.
The carbon that has been removed from the atmosphere by these critters is astounding. The amount of carbon on the surface of the earth is estimated as follows: 850 billion tons in the atmosphere, 2,000 billion tons in plants and soil, 5,000 to 10,000 billion tons in fossil fuels, and 38,000 billion tons dissolved in the oceans. The total, rounded up to the max, is about 50,000 billion tons. The amount tied up in fossilized sea shells, a.k.a. carbonaceous rock? 100,000,000 billion tons, or about 2000 times the rest of the earth's surface combined.
Carbonaceous sedimentation and rock formation is ongoing today, and only the introduction of man-made CO2 has reversed the inevitable extinction of life on earth. As Moore, says, GǣIt is ironic that life itself, by devising a protective suit of armour, determined its own eventual demise by continuously removing CO2 from the atmosphere.Gǥ But, GǣThank God,Gǥ as even an atheist might say, along came coal-burning man to save the day.
Coal itself is the second great irony in the history of CO2 on earth. The formation of coal, like carbonaceous rock, could have wiped out life on earth as it sucked up CO2 by the billions of tons with no end in sight. The coal story begins some 400 million years ago when plants evolved to produce lignin, which combined with cellulose equals'Voila!'TREES. There was a problem though. As Moore puts it:
GǣAs vast forests spread across the land, living biomass increased by orders of magnitude, pulling down carbon as CO2 from the atmosphere to make wood. Lignin is very difficult to break down and no decomposer species possessed the enzymes to digest it. Trees died atop one another until they were 100 meters or more in depth. This was the making of the great coal beds around the world as this huge store of sequestered carbon continued to build for 90 million years. Then, fortunately for the future of life, white rot fungi evolved to produce the enzymes that can digest lignin and coincident with that, the coal-making era came to an end.
GǣThere was no guarantee that fungi or any other decomposer species would develop the complex of enzymes required to digest lignin. If they had not, CO2, which had already been drawn down for the first time in Earth's history to levels similar to todayG