Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Vacuum at the Heart of the Vortex

"Professional Catholic" Mark Shea rightly condemns Professional Demagogue Michael Voris for promoting the work of antisemites and geocentrists.

Let me explain what this is all about.  I'll use shorter words.
Michael Voris.  The bad hair doesn't bother me;
what bothers me is what's underneath.

Michael Voris is not content (as Shea points out) with

denouncing the errors and gutless cowardice of such menaces as Fr. Father Robert Barron and such dangerous men as Karl Keating, Jimmy Akin, Al Kresta and similar wolves in sheep’s clothing

... he now gives exposure to folks who believe that modern science is all wrong and who believe that the Jews are a menace to society.


Let us learn a few things here.

As I point out in Mark's comment box ...

The fact is that Voris has been fueling the fires of schism, fanning the flames of the irrational, and feeding the furnace of wrath for years now. His engine keeps chugging along, but the track leads nowhere.

But that can be hard to see, even now when Voris goes all in to play to the small but intense demographic of extremists who support him.  Even something as insane and unbalanced as geocentrism and antisemitism can be made to "go down smooth."

You see, in the internet age, it's very easy for crackpots to sound normal.

For instance, the first comment on Voris' video of the interview in question is from some yokel who ignores the evidence and flatly asserts that the Big Bang is an anti-Christian Pagan myth grafted onto science.  This appears in black and white right along side everything else.  It's on the internet so it must be true.  It's an example of an uninformed mind waving the banner of his ignorance.  (But then, so is Michael Voris.)

A generation ago, such a comment would have been filtered out from the Letters to the Editor section of your local paper, to spare the writer embarrassment if nothing else.  But now such things gain a kind of currency.  When the same machine (your laptop) tells you with the same electronic glow that Christ died for our sins and that the universe physically revolves around the Earth; that science is right about the winter storm approaching but wrong about the evidence that indicates the Big Bang (a theory first suggested by a Jesuit priest, incidentally); that your friends are all on Facebook and that male enhancement pills really work - it's difficult to stay sane.  Even television feeds us mostly lies.  The internet is worse because the internet has no filter.  Truth and falsehood come at us from all directions - the simple and the mundane get mixed in with the bizarre, the insane and the horribly angry and dangerous.


Voris' whole technique is indeed a dead end, a one way track.  The Vortex creates a low pressure system that sucks everything into its vacant and vapid path.  An irrational anger that responds even to legitimate grievances, if indulged and cultivated, is toxic.  It leads to geocentrism, Jew hating and paranoia.  It leads to hell on earth.

(NB: Voris and his followers will issue the denial, "This is just an exposure of ideas, not an endorsement!"  Don't buy that for a second.  This vortex is simply a death spiral.)


Paul Stilwell said...

Here's a good post:

Paul Stilwell said...

Her blog is worth reading!

Sebonde said...

Good thing the Internet was not around in the 1930s or the Sixteenth Century. I shudder to think what dangerous ideas would have been spread about had those eras had this Infernally Filterless Internet.

Kevin O'Brien said...

Touche, Sebonde.

The fault is not in our internets but in ourselves.

Terry Nelson said...

"You see, in the internet age, it's very easy for crackpots to sound normal."

I've made it very clear I'm not. Normal I mean.

Anonymous said...

Poor Kevey Wevey.. can't handle real men... he likes the panty waist Mark Shea types....they tickle each others tummies...


Kevin O'Brien said...

Bob knows me well. Bob and I are gay lovers. We tickle each others tummies. That's still "chastity", right?

Kevin Tierney said...

As long as you are "looking" upon him with love and not lust!

Good balanced look at things though. A lot of people going crazy over Voris act as if he's on the ascent of becoming the next big thing in catholicism, and all troops must rouse together to exterminate the barbarian at the gate..... but Voris' actions aren't of a man on the ascent, but on the decline.

You don't intellectually shack up with Bob Sungenis when you are on the way up in influence.

I think it's worth another discussion, but there was a time when Catholicism and Catholics were at the cutting edge of science, especially in the "golden ages" a lot of traditional minded types like Voris pine for.

Today most of those types are espousing geocentricism, calling the big bang pagan, saying global warming is a massive hoax, that you can't believe in evolution and God, that all GMO's are dangeously unsafe, and that vaccines give people retardation.

What the heck happened and where is the Church that was once comfortable with science?!?~!??~?!?!

Kevin Tierney said...

and oh yeah, why are people presenting crap like this as part of Catholicism?

James B. said...

When I saw the name "Bob Sungenis" my first impression was that it was a type of Scotch. Then I wikipedia-ed the name to find out it's the name of a looney polemicist.

Back on the topic of liquor, someone should make a mixed drink called "The Voris", maybe it would consist of caster oil or maybe LSD-laced gasoline mixed with Robert Surgenis [scotch whiskey] ;)

Stephen Lowe said...

Ah...another Shea apologist. Colored me surprised. It is torture reading him and his charity, which is always one way.

Kevin O'Brien said...

Stephen, like Bob above you seem to think this is about Mark Shea. This has nothing to do with Mark Shea. This is about Michael Voris.

Apparently Voris' fans are unable to mount a defense of him so they simply change the subject. If you can't defend your man, go after his critics. Meanwhile, Voris cozies up to geocentrists and Holocaust deniers and the response of people like Bob and Stephen is to criticize Mark Shea and make rude remarks about my manhood.

Stephen Lowe said...

Ah, I see I was lumped in with Bob. My only point is that Shea detaches prudence from charity. This is so obvious if you ever disagree with him on any of his analysis. I did not attack your manhood in my comment above and will not do so.

Anonymous said...

Kevin, did you actually watch the interview Voris conducted with DeLano and Sungenis?

The idea that there can't even be a discussion on the heliocentric model without ridicule shows that there is no sincere intellectual honesty.

Tom Leith said...

I am sure anonymous yesterday 3:13 AM meant "geocentric model".

The instant a geocentrist can explain the phases of Venus and its apparent size and speed in those phases with actual data and geometry, and without special pleading the honest discussion without ridicule can begin. Until then, he can't even "save the appearances" much less say he's got the physics right. Then we can start talking about discoveries AFTER 1610. And an appeal to Einstein won't help -- if you can choose a reference frame you're saying there is no physical center at all, only a "center of calculational convenience" or something.