What’s Wrong with the World

The men signed of the cross of Christ go gaily in the dark.

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What’s Wrong with the World is dedicated to the defense of what remains of Christendom, the civilization made by the men of the Cross of Christ. Athwart two hostile Powers we stand: the Jihad and Liberalism...read more

Recent Comments

An International Day of Celebration

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 23, 14:58:

"Inevitable" in the sense of Hillary Clinton's successful campaign? Those who deny these plain facts are the usual cadre of short-sighted self-seekers: wealthy businesspeople, religious fanatics, the uneducated, the political animals, the haters. You have a typo, there, Jake. It should be "successful businessmen..." ... [More]

An International Day of Celebration

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 23, 08:48:

Great fakeout. The first E.D. was in 1970 on the 100th anniversary of Lenin's birth. ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 22, 15:42:

16: The family is a natural community and is prior to the state. 17: God made a gift of the world to mankind for us to use. 18: Men are rightly free to choose how they will use the world by applying themselves to the resources at hand, taking into account certain social obligations and existing limits on those resources. 20: Due to sin and to local variation in men, resources and in customs, an absolutely unrestrained marketplace does not meet the needs of men. but I'd say that 18 and 19 should deri ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Nice Marmot on Apr 22, 11:45:

"I may regret this, but..." :-) "do you mean that my numbers 18 and 19 are wrong?" Not necessarily, but I'd say that 18 and 19 should derive from a variant of 20, and be colored by it, rather than the other way around. I think you're getting the cart before the horse. I see this resulting from a sort of lacuna between numbers 16/17 and 18 -- man-in-community jumps to man as individual in the marketplace. As they say in England, "Mind the gap." Or to put this another way, I don't see it as warranted to ... [More]

Ten Years of What's Wrong with the World

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 22, 09:33:

Still I do get the feeling that cooler heads like ours will be forced to choose a side (both of whom are enemies). I won't do that. ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 21, 16:08:

I may regret this, but... Nice, do you mean that my numbers 18 and 19 are wrong? Now that I think about it, that could be taken either of two ways: (a) 18 and 19 do not express what conservatives think; or (b) 18 and 19 do express what conservatives think, but conservatives are wrong on this. ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Nice Marmot on Apr 21, 14:21:

"An infection that is now beginning to be recognized to what it is, partly thanks to the alt-right." and "If anything, the alt-right's tendency to dismiss issues like abortion or even to actively diss the pro-life movement as 'dysgenic' plays right into the hands of the libertine wing of libertarianism." If the Right needs to learn anything, it's that "choice devours itself" in both the sexual AND economic spheres. There is very little difference between "I can do what I want -- it's my body!" and "I ca ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Urban II on Apr 21, 13:04:

There is no reason to not use BOTH good rhetoric AND reason - since reason is actually on our side, (since "our side" is whatever is true). I absolutely agree. I think effective rhetoric must be based on truth. I also think it's important to know when to reason and when to use rhetoric. For example, don't try to reason with the Safespace Warriors on college campuses. They deserve to be mocked, not reasoned with. Effectively, relying on such methods without ever trying to change their thinking through reas ... [More]

Ten Years of What's Wrong with the World

Comment posted by Ingemar on Apr 21, 11:59:

Wonderfully written. I still think about the late Lawrence Auster from time to time. He was prescient about the maladies that affected Spencer and his ilk and would undoubtedly be grateful that he didn't live to see the rise of Trump's America. Still I do get the feeling that cooler heads like ours will be forced to choose a side (both of whom are enemies). This reminds me of the struggles of the Ukrainian nationalists in the 40's; they hated Stalin because he tried to starve them all to death and they ( ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 21, 10:50:

An infection that is now beginning to be recognized to what it is, partly thanks to the alt-right. If anything, the alt-right's tendency to dismiss issues like abortion or even to actively diss the pro-life movement as "dysgenic" plays right into the hands of the libertine wing of libertarianism. Hey, look, boys and girls: You can be called "conservative" while not believing those inconvenient things that get in the way of your sex life, like that killing unborn babies is wrong. ... [More]

Ten Years of What's Wrong with the World

Comment posted by Ben Carmack on Apr 21, 09:24:

"We grieve the loss of friends but will have no truck with the bizarre simulacrums of conservatism that have risen in recent years. We do not believe that Jews are responsible for any particular wickedness in the world. We do not believe that husbands should game their wives. We do not believe that vulgarity can stand in for effective polemics. We do not believe that non-whites are anything less than human, or, when American, anything less than American through and through. We reject the “science” of human ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 21, 08:43:

Not if that means Kurt Schlichter's Twitter language. I guess I am glad I am not a Twit, then. Fight rhetoric with better rhetoric. Social Justice Warrior and snowflake are two good examples. This is probably dated now, but one of my favorites was, just when you see that a SJW feminazi is about to launch her "check your privilege", you do it first and louder, right back at her before she gets a chance. The technique can be expanded to all sorts of other digs to undermine her rhetorical position (and ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Mactoul on Apr 21, 04:30:

Tony, It is in Russell Kirk. I wonder why and how libertarians came to be identified as belonging to the Right. They do not care for the tradition. They do not care for the nation-state. And thus their fusion with the conservatism led to a severe infection of the conservatism with libertarian ideas. An infection that is now beginning to be recognized to what it is, partly thanks to the alt-right. ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Urban II on Apr 20, 23:18:

Not if that means Kurt Schlichter's Twitter language. I suppose I do not see enough of his Twitter posts to know what kind of language he is using. I am talking about his Townhall articles, which I enjoy. And, yeah, I think language matters. Not because I'm liberal, but because I'm conservative. Liberals understand that language matters, which is why they work extremely hard to set the Narrative, to define the terms, and use rhetoric to their advantage. And not if that means we have to be Trumpites to ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 20, 17:48:

a Kurt Schlichter attitude Not if that means Kurt Schlichter's Twitter language. And, yeah, I think language matters. Not because I'm liberal, but because I'm conservative. And not if that means we have to be Trumpites to show that we really know how to fight. ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Urban II on Apr 20, 17:11:

Do you have candidates? Or, elements that need to be in such a strategy? That is a good question. It is often much easier to point at things that shouldn't be done, such as week long apology tours Republican politicians go on when they violate some liberal norm. You already pointed out part of what I think should be done. You mentioned that you know the people who founded Thomas Aquinas College and Christendom College. Part of the strategy is to build our own institutions and technologies. I think of how Y ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 20, 15:36:

And the tragedy of American conservatism lies in a persistent confusion with liberalism's disparagement of the family and the polis. Mactoul, can you expand on this? ... [More]

Ten Years of What's Wrong with the World

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 20, 13:17:

I was impressed with the quality of the writing and of the thinking here 8 years ago when I first stumbled across this site. (Excluding my own posts), I am still impressed with it, and I think it compares favorably with just about ANY purveyor of religious and social commentary over the same period. Thank you, Paul and Lydia, thank you to all the contributors, and to our friends the commenters who have joined us in this extended conversation. ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 20, 10:34:

Conservatives often have no spine to defend allies. Conservatives need a full fledged offensive strategy to direct politics back towards those goods we have received. I failed to say, Urban, that I completely agree with you here. It is disgusting to see so-called conservatives fall all over themselves to give up ground to liberals in such situations. Conservatives have been betrayed over and over by "leaders" of what should have been staunch conservative groups. And a comprehensive offensive strategy is ... [More]

Ten Years of What's Wrong with the World

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 20, 10:32:

Thank you, Paul. I'm honored to be standing with you now as ten years ago. ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Mactoul on Apr 20, 06:57:

In other words, the conservative understands that the humans are organized into three irreducible levels a) Individual b) family c) the city or the polis None of the levels may be reduced to the others. The liberal sees only the individual. And the tragedy of American conservatism lies in a persistent confusion with liberalism's disparagement of the family and the polis. That leaves many conservatives unable to answer questions that libertarians pose to them--such as how does my gmarriage harm your marr ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 19, 23:22:

The next generation of 'conservatives' will conserve the right to sodomy and right to marriage while fighting the next battle against transgendered bathrooms. Sad to say, Urban, there will be some conservatives who think they are obliged to defend the "right to sodomy". You are right about that. Nevertheless, this will be a mistake. That is, it is a mistake, even from within the realm of conservatism, not just 'right thinking'. As I indicated (see #s 1, 3, and 6 & 7), the conservative aims to prese ... [More]

Is This Conservatism?

Comment posted by Urban II on Apr 19, 21:59:

Very informative list of the different conservative subclasses. I have a few general comments. Conservatives are always playing defense and unfortunately once the offense scores, there is no way to get points off the score card. There are countless examples to illustrate this point. The most current example is same-sex 'marriage'. Conservatives went from defending sodomy laws to defending marriage. The next generation of 'conservatives' will conserve the right to sodomy and right to marriage while fighting ... [More]

Making the Inklings talk to the future--On Death

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 19, 20:51:

Yes, that's the passage I was thinking of. Mactoul, although Tolkien may have had that one passage in the Silmarilion, I think his more consistent stance is that the Valar do not know what Iluvatar has in store for men in the ultimate. This is hidden even from them. And, given what Lydia pointed out, Tolkien may have not really even figured out what their end was to be, he may have flipped and flopped back and forth between several options without a definite solution. ... [More]

Ten Years of What's Wrong with the World

Comment posted by Step2 on Apr 19, 19:51:

Appropriate song for the current global situation, in my opinion. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xJpfK7l404I ... [More]

Making the Inklings talk to the future--On Death

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 19, 09:35:

Mactoul, Tony is probably alluding to this statement concerning Arwen and Elrond: None saw her last meeting with Elrond her father, for they went up into the hills and there spoke long together, and bitter was their parting that should endure beyond the ends of the world. That's pretty unequivocal. It's not impossible that Tolkien said something elsewhere that was incompatible with it. His mythology is vast, and one of the things that delayed the publication of the Silmarillion was the difficulty of choos ... [More]

Making the Inklings talk to the future--On Death

Comment posted by Nice Marmot on Apr 19, 07:53:

I wonder how much Lewis may have been influenced in this area by MacDonald, whose views on death were somewhat unorthodox, he himself having been influenced by the German Romantics. It's been quite a long time since I read MacDonald, but I recall that some of his tales feature a kind of tragic or wistful longing for death. He seemed to view death not exclusively as an enemy, but also as a vehicle for a birth into the new life of the hereafter, and thus a "good." MacDonald was fond of saying, "I wis we we ... [More]

Making the Inklings talk to the future--On Death

Comment posted by Mactoul on Apr 19, 01:39:

Tony, There are references in Silmarllion to end-time prophecies that talk of choirs that would sing at the end of the world and that there would be choirs of elves and men included therein. So I don't think the idea of eternal separation between men and elves is plausible. ... [More]

The Empty Tomb

Comment posted by Jeffrey S. on Apr 17, 10:23:

Paul, Thanks for this Easter meditation! A belated Happy Easter to all the wonderful folks at W4!! ... [More]

Making the Inklings talk to the future--On Death

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 17, 09:31:

When I was researching this I found, but didn't copy, some passages in which Tolkien said something to the effect that elves are immortal only *with* Middle Earth. That is, that when Middle Earth ends, elves' lives will finally end as well. But you're right. He definitely implies that even if elves have an afterlife aside from Middle Earth, it can never be reunited with men's afterlife. He refers in his letters several times to Aragorn's statement to Arwen, to comfort her, that they are "not bound forever t ... [More]

Making the Inklings talk to the future--On Death

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 17, 09:17:

if for no other reason than that God creates a *group* of humans to begin with. There is no Adam of the race. My recollection from the Silmarillion is that the origin of men is lost in pre-history. Others are the "good guys," and there is a kind of spiritual Lamarckianism according to which the descendants of the really bad guys are all bad and the descendants of those who stuck to the tutelage of the good angels originally are both physically long-lived and also *mostly*, though not invariably, good. ... [More]

The Empty Tomb

Comment posted by Tony on Apr 17, 07:57:

His tomb is empty, and so our hope is not empty. Thanks, Paul. ... [More]

The Empty Tomb

Comment posted by Mactoul on Apr 17, 07:05:

He is risen indeed. ... [More]

The Empty Tomb

Comment posted by Jake Freivald on Apr 16, 22:12:

Thanks, Paul, and Happy Easter, everyone. ... [More]

The Empty Tomb

Comment posted by Sage McLaughlin on Apr 16, 21:11:

Truly, I am indebted to you, Paul. Thank you. ... [More]

The Empty Tomb

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 16, 14:46:

He is risen indeed! Thank you, Paul! ... [More]

The Empty Tomb

Comment posted by Nobody special on Apr 16, 11:11:

A blessed easter to everyone! ... [More]

The Empty Tomb

Comment posted by Beth Impson on Apr 16, 09:14:

He is risen indeed! Thank you for this meditation, Paul, and a glorious Easter to you and yours, and all the WWWtW writers and readers. ... [More]

Making the Inklings talk to the future--On Death

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 15, 09:39:

Lewis's hrossa are not only definitely an unfallen race but also seldom or never seem to sin. Ransom, in talking to them, occasionally hears them refer to a member of their race who might be born with some kind of bizarre disorder, such as having two heads, and sin is associated with that kind of disorder, but the implication is that in the normal course of events they are all submissive to God's will and to Oyarsa as God's regent. On the other hand, they are capable of sin because Oyarsa refers to a time l ... [More]

Making the Inklings talk to the future--On Death

Comment posted by Lydia on Apr 14, 09:30:

In that picture, one way to envision the end is that the elderly Numenorean is allowed "stop fighting" natural causes, and let what would-have-been normal death causes to have their effect after all - just in a highly accelerated / collapsed time frame of letting what normally takes place over the last 5 or so years of natural aging unto death take place in a few moments. I don't *think* that's the idea, because in other ways Tolkien pictures Aragorn as definitely aging, only more slowly. He finally feels ... [More]