Bin Laden, Seal Team 6, and The Greatest Problem in the Universe

 And now, ladies and gentlemen, it is time to take a break from current events.  We have the body of Osama Bin Laden chilled in the freezing depths of the Arabian Sea, where the fish and crabs can dine on him at their leisure, and we all should be celebrating that.  Osama Bin Laden is now Osama Bin Khilled.  The terrorists are all scurrying like cockroaches, wondering if we have their names, phone numbers, and addresses in the “small college library’s” worth of information that we collected at the great Sheik Osama’s humble abode, a millionaire’s mansion that few of his followers could afford.  His comrades in terror will try to avenge his death, but it will probably take them a little while to get new cell phones, steal new cars, get new fake identities and passports, new email addresses, new credit cards, and pack their bombs and prayer rugs into suitcases to move to new apartments.  (UPDATE– sadly, the Pakistani Taliban quickly found 2 suicide bombers willing to attack a Pakistani military base, killing 80 and wounding 120 people. But at least, that is 2 less terrorists for us to find and kill.) 

 So, it is time for something a little different in this blog, and that is pure philosophy, or at least as pure as I can write it.  I wrote the following piece a few years ago, except for a few words of it.  So it is not current events, but a great thing about philosophy is that it has a shelf life of a few thousand years.  We are still discussing and arguing the ideas of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle (circa 300 B.C.), not to mention the philosophical ideas of the founders of all the major religions, from Abraham to Zoroaster, through  Buddha and Jesus, to Mohammed and Joseph Smith.  Philosophy can reach across thousands of years, and dictate how we use the latest technological advancements today.  Osama Bin Laden represented the darkest part of the religious philosophy of Mohammed, founder of Islam, circa 650 A.D., but he was using cell phones, computers, and thumb drives to run his terror organization.  These modern marvels are a result of his enemy’s philosophy and culture, as were the airplanes he guided into the World Trade Center towers, but he used them anyway, because his philosophy and culture can’t produce anything of note except fine Persian rugs, Arabian race horses, and the widespread abuse of women.  Have you ever seen a fine Arabian car, an Egyptian-produced airplane, or an Iranian-produced computer?  Of course not, because they do not exist!!  Pakistan is an ominous exception to the rule, making their own nuclear weapons, and Iran will soon have some, too.  Dubai is a delightful exception, producing the amazing Burj Al Arab, the only 7-star hotel in the world, loaded with advanced features.  But as a general rule, the Arab/Muslim culture is not capable of technological advance. In fact, the widespread Wahhabi movement is hostile to it. The internet is rife with glowing info on Muslim discoveries, inventions, and innovations that “shaped the modern world”….. about 1000 years ago!! Here is a good article about it http://plancksconstant.org/blog1/2006/03/the_arab_contribution_to_civilization_nothing_lately.html What has the Arab/Muslim philosophy and culture invented in the past few hundred years….. nothing!!

Here is a photo claimed to be the members of Navy Seal Team 6 who went on the mission to kill Osama Bin Laden.  It is also counter-claimed to be a photo of 1/6 scale toy action figures (note the plastic-looking arm on the far right).  If so, it is still very realistic.  It represents the latest in American military technology.

 In stark contrast to Arab/Muslim culture, The U.S. military personnel who killed Osama represented part of Judeo/Greco/Christian philosophy and culture, which became a coherent force circa 325 A.D. in the Roman Empire.  Osama was using our old technology to watch himself on TV, but our warriors were using the latest secret Western technology, which we developed for ourselves, and we should be damn proud of that.  The world was shocked to see the tidbit of cutting-edge American technology left behind at Osama’s compound… a stealth helicopter tail never seen before by the public.   If the Muslims want to compete with us or oppose us, they have to use our own stuff against us!!  (Or move into our countries and have more babies than we do… that is the real threat.)   Our philosophy has resulted in a great victory, for the moment.  My point is– philosophy has a hand in what we think, what we do, what we invent.  Philosophy affects everything.  We are all philosophers in our own right, whether we realize it or not.  That is why I like studying philosophy, and why I like trying my hand at writing it.  So I hope you enjoy this article, which I call:

The Greatest Problem in the Universe

             It takes years of experience and great skill to create a fine work of art…..

            It takes one zealot with a hammer or knife one minute to destroy it.

            It takes a lifetime to accumulate wisdom and to share it with others…..

            It takes one bullet one second to stop the wise man in his tracks.

                        — Original to this work

 I just finished reading an excellent book “Trinity, Time & Eternity” (2002) by L. Ralph Rohr, M.D.  In the book, Rohr keeps a very scientific tone and tries to link Christian doctrine to the latest science of light, electromagnetism and quantum physics, and he does a good job of that.  But like all religious arguments, he also tries to link reality doctrine to morality doctrine.  Not only must we accept the religion’s view of cosmic reality, we must also accept the religion’s view of moral principle.  While Rohr is arguing, to good effect, that God could be an entity of intense light energy with unlimited power at a wavelength we will never be able to measure, he also argues all the pacifist morality of the New Testament.  All through the book, Rohr follows the old doctrinal line of  “God is love”, “Love your enemies”, “Love conquers all”, etc., etc.  This drives me to distraction!  In the Old Testament, Jehovah or Yahweh killed all the first-born males of Egypt, and commanded the Hebrews to kill their enemies in Canaan to the last man, woman, and child.  But this is the same God who came later in human form as Jesus Christ, preaching unlimited forgiveness.  God is not all peace and love, all the time.  There is a proper time and place for all things, except pure evil.  God and all agents of goodness must have options of force open to them at all times, because love has it limitations.  Love cannot defeat hate.  Love can conquer no person who does not submit to it by choice.  But when people choose hate over love, we are told to just suffer and take it, and leave judgment to God.  This does not work, and it allows hate to destroy love;  evil to destroy good.   It can also be argued to be bad doctrine;  a manipulative doctrine that misinterprets scripture.  The religious packaging of reality doctrine with morality doctrine is not the greatest problem in the universe;  it is just a pet peeve of mine, which I had to mention.  But it does lead us to the greatest problem in the universe, as we will now see.

 I think the extreme pacifist moral doctrine of Christianity and other religions is an age-old misinterpretation of love and goodness, that people tend to fall into.  Its emotional appeal is strong, it has become a mantra, and people recite it without thinking:  love your enemies, turn the other cheek, do not resist evil, do unto others as you would have them do unto you.  BUT, love and goodness are worthless unless they produce justice, and justice is worthless without the means to enforce it upon the unjust. The unjust will dominate, unless justice is forced upon them in some way.  That is the greatest problem of life, and not just human life.  On this planet, we are living out the greatest problem in the universe.  It is the question of the enforcement of justice.  And we are in constant conflict between two major factions on the side of goodness.  On one hand, we have those practical people who have worked out the real solution  (refuse to be a victim, identify your enemies and oppose them, defend and enforce moral values in society, defend good people under violent attack with all means, including violence, to achieve Justice).  On the other hand, we have those pacifist religious extremists or liberal extremists who BELIEVE they have the solution  (be a willing victim, turn the other cheek, recognize no enemies, oppose no enemies, do not enforce moral values in society, ban personal weapons, leave Justice to God or government)  but who are tragically, hopelessly wrong.  Another distinction is that the first group accepts the personal responsibility to achieve Justice, but the second group shirks that responsibility, pushing it as far away from themselves as they can.  This aggravates all the other problems in society, but I am trying to focus here on the “greatest” problem.

 Here is the greatest problem in the universe, in the simplest terms, for intelligent forms of life (that would be most of us humans) trying to live a decent moral life.  It is also the greatest problem for any benevolent superior entities who care about us, up to and including God.  The problem is two-fold:

 Pleasure CANNOT be forced upon anyone,  at any time.

Pain CAN be forced upon anyone,  at any time.

 By “pleasure” I do not mean the sensual pleasures that immediately come to mind  (good food, drink, music, games, sex, entertainment, parties).  Those are temporary physical or social pleasures with little or no real moral value.   By “pleasure” I mean all wholesome positive experiences or assets in life, such as love, good humor, virtue, the accumulation of wisdom, the learning of skills, the building of friendship, family, and so on.  These are the lasting spiritual pleasures that make our lives worthwhile.   No one can be forced to experience these spiritual pleasures; no one can be given these virtues.  If we try to give these virtues to someone who is not ready for them, it is like casting pearls before swine, and we will get trampled in the mud along with the pearls of wisdom that we offered to the filthy pigs.  In my youth, I was that stupid pig who was given pearls of wisdom or friendship, that I trampled into the mud.  I was not ready for the virtue that was offered to me.  I think perhaps I am more ready now.

 By “pain” I mean all mental, emotional and physical pain, up to and including death.  We all know people who seem to enjoy inflicting mental and emotional pain on others.  Most of us are lucky enough NOT to know people who enjoy inflicting physical pain on others,  but this is common enough,  in abusive families and in the predatory backwaters of society,  such as gangs or organized crime.  It is very common in countries with dictatorships and tyrannies.  All types of pain can be forced upon anyone, at any time.  Even our friends and family will sometimes try to inflict emotional pain with the expertise of an engineer.  Those who know us the best, can hurt us the most, if they want to.

 Good people seek the lasting spiritual pleasures or virtues,  and try to influence others to seek them.  Though pain is usually experienced in seeking these pleasures,  good people will not use the option of forcing pain upon others to make their point,  but on the other hand, they will not protect others from the pains of making mistakes and learning.  If they are left alone, good people will form ethical and productive groups and societies.  Left alone, in a concept similar to that of Heaven,  their leaders or their God will conduct a glorious symphony of positive attitudes and constructive behavior.  As a group, they will continue to learn, grow and prosper.  They will only have to contend with the odd stray note, or a few choir members singing off-key.

 The eternal, universal trouble is that good people are not left alone to learn, grow and prosper.  They never will be left alone, as long as God deems not to separate good people from evil people, as long as the moral laws of life remain constant  (intelligence and self-awareness produce moral autonomy).  Moral autonomy means the absolute ability to choose one’s morals or ethics for oneself.  No matter how much we cherish peace, no matter what philosophy of love or goodness we construct, no matter what rules of reason we establish to follow that philosophy, there will be predatory people who ignore the rules and force their ill will upon us.  They do this by forcing pain upon us, in the most basic and brutal terms, or the threat of pain.  It is unfashionable these days to talk about force, but force is the trump card in the game of life, as anyone who has experienced it will understand.  When love fails to calm the aggressor and reason fails to stop him, force is the only thing left to prevent the aggressor from imposing his will upon us.  When necessary, we must return pain for pain, in order to stop the ORIGINAL and unjustified source of the pain.  This is the only way to enforce moral values upon those who flagrantly violate them.

This principle is sanctioned by Bible scripture, when God is speaking to Noah, after the great Flood, about how people are to conduct their lives, as they re-populate the Earth.  As the story goes, God had just killed millions with a flood, because they had become too evil.  The vast majority of humanity was genetically and morally corrupted, beyond saving.  To prevent this from happening again, God gives a stern command.  In Genesis 9:5-7,  God says “…At the hand of every man’s brother will I require the life of man.  Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed:  for in the image of God he made man.”  This tells us that when a human has become so evil that he or she becomes a murderer, unjustly taking the life of another precious human, made in the image of God, then the murderer is to be killed also.  This tells us that once a human has become a murderer, there is no way to reform the murderer, and he or she deserves only death, for he or she is already dead to God and goodness.  Those humans who carry out the death sentence are not murderers, but are merely agents of justice, carrying out the will and command of God, with heavy hearts for the lost soul.  Unjust violence must eventually be answered with justified violence.  Nothing else will enforce moral values upon those who flagrantly violate them, and who are unwilling to change their ways.  

 To drive this point home, imagine with me a historic conference arranged by God.  The conference is a divine experiment, which God seems to indulge in from time to time.  For example, the Book of Job in the Bible tells of a divine experiment, in which God allows Satan to wreck the life of Job.  Poor Job loses his possessions, his house, his family and his health, to see if he will lose his faith in God.  Job was all but destroyed, and he cried out in excruciating pain and misery, but he did not give up his faith.  So God restored to him all that he had in his former life.

 My proposed experiment is an attempt to demonstrate the superiority or desirability of goodness over evil.  The conference will be attended by the most famous and infamous people in history, to represent the struggle between good and evil.  The conference will continue, and the attendees will not be let out, until one side convinces the other of their error.  The attendees will be required to appear in physically embodied forms, that are capable of experiencing pain and death.  We can have no wild cards of spirits, angels, wraiths, demons, or sublime shining orbs of life energy.  This will represent the struggle of flesh and blood in the physical world, not the metaphysical.  But if someone is killed in the conference, they will be resurrected to continue the struggle, until one side converts to the other. 

 We need famous people for this conference, strong-willed people who have dedicated their lives to their creed, or who have died following that creed.  Hopefully, they would consent to return to the earthly plane for this historic conference.  On the side of goodness we could have Moses, Jesus, Buddha, Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King, and perhaps even the famous atheist pacifist Bertrand Russell.  We need a great statesman, so invite George Washington, the great general and first President, the greatest founder of America.  We need a great philosopher, so invite Socrates or Aristotle or Immanuel Kant, or all three.  We could even have God the Father leading the good guys in a separate incarnation from Jesus, if Russell didn’t object too much.  On the side of evil, we could have Attila the Hun, Genghis Khan, Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Ho Chi Minh, Pol Pot, Saddam Hussein and Osama Bin Laden, perhaps with a minor murderer like Charles Manson thrown in  (oh that’s right, he is not dead yet, but let him come anyway, for he is as good as dead).  Satan could lead the dark side in some incarnation, with his admirer Saul Alinsky tagging along.  The German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche could argue his doctrine of “might makes right.”  I would invite Mohammed, founder of Islam, but I am not sure which side he would be on.  Of all the founders of religions, he was by far the most violent.  So let him come and choose his own side.  Once we have this fabulous forum of good and evil assembled and locked in to a conference center somewhere, complete with a support staff to provide all their physical needs, the greatest moral debate in history will begin.  And of course, as the greatest reality TV you could possibly imagine, it must be televised.  So we would all be watching.  Unless historical events bore you, and you would rather watch Southpark, The Family Guy, soap operas or sports.

 The debate will have no rules save those rules that either side can establish to follow as a team.  But neither team is bound by the rules of the other team.  This is the essence of God-granted freedom of will.  This is also the way humanity is organized on this planet, in real conflicts of good and evil, so let’s keep it realistic in that sense.  This is not a friendly sports match with rules that all the players must follow.  Also being realistic, no miracles are allowed, but teaching materials, tools and weapons are allowed.  No expense will be spared to provide the attendees with whatever physical resources they may require.  For this would be a contest to finally determine the superiority of goodness or evil, in the physical realm. 

 Who would be the winners, you may ask?  I don’t know, but I do know it would be a long, epic struggle.  Can anyone doubt the progression of such a conference?  It would start in peace, but end in violence.  Most likely, physical force would determine the outcome of this debate in a physical arena, with no metaphysical elements allowed.  It may not start out that way.  The side of goodness would negotiate and debate better than any earthly politician;  they would apply the principles of “conflict resolution” better than any earthly professor;  they would preach love and peace with great wisdom and eloquence like the saints they are, worthy to fill the pages of a new Bible.  Like some modern philosophers from Earth, they might argue that evil people can be “disarmed by love,”  if only their victims and the rest of us would love them enough.

But even these, the greatest saints in history, could not force the evil ones to accept the “pleasures” of morality, love, peace and wisdom.  Their efforts of love might succeed in a spiritual environment with errant souls, where the saints cannot be harmed;  but not in a physical environment,  where the saints have bones that break,  skin that can be pierced,  and blood that spills.  In a spiritual or metaphysical environment, love may have the advantage.  But on Earth, love is ground under the heels of tyrants, or manipulated to serve them.  Love is literally “out of its element” on our harsh and brutal planet.  Here, love withers like a water lily in the desert, without strong protection and shelter.  In any severe conflict, the side that is the most evil, that is the most willing to use lying, threats, force, violence and killing to win the conflict, has a tactical advantage,  and if they are not engaged in battle and stopped,  they will win.

This premise does not support the brute Nietzsche philosophy of  “might makes right” or “might becomes right.”  It simply means that any good philosophy or good spiritual morality MUST be supported by strong means of physical protection and enforcement, or it will lose in any conflict with a better-physically-supported philosophy or morality,  regardless of which one is right or wrong.  Instead of “might makes right,”  this could be expressed as “might helps right” or “might helps right to survive, long enough to make a difference.”  Money and resources also greatly help.  A strong military is necessary to protect a strong democracy.  This is an obvious moral principle, that should not even be necessary to stress here.  But the extreme modern pacifists in our culture, politics and religion do make it necessary to stress here,  because those extremists label ALL violence as evil.  They even condemn simple forcefulness, or strength of character, or wealth, especially when it comes from a male.

The evil ones may actually listen to the saints’ wise and wonderful arguments.  They may pretend to agree.  The good guys may even convince one or two of the dictators of their evil and win them over to goodness.  But as long as the good guys denounce force, refusing to use their weapons, and as long as JUST ONE dictator remained predatory, using his weapons, the side of goodness would be doomed.  Sooner or later, the predatory dictator(s) would grow tired of debate, and would do what they do best, dictate, and use force to impose their will on the other side.  They would inflict pain and death upon the emissaries of goodness.  If Jesus spoke out against the dictators,  he would likely be killed once again,  and for what good?  But if he used force to defeat the dictators,  it seems he would violate everything he taught us to do.  Regardless of the apparent double standards,  He would have to act with force to stop the dictators,  when words failed to do so.  This would be an ideal time for the forceful policies of Jehovah,  from the Old Testament.  Remember that God told us:  “Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed:  for in the image of God he made man.”  (Genesis 9:5-6)  The moral teachings of the Old Testament and New Testament are equally valid.  It is up to us to have the wisdom to learn when to apply them.

 In this conference, contrary to the peaceful teachings of Jesus,  Buddha and the rest of the good guys,  the only way these emissaries of goodness could prevail over the angry dictators would be by force.  No miracles or lightning bolts are allowed,  so they would have to use physical restraints or weapons.  They would first have to use force to defend themselves from the inevitable first attack of the dictators, then the second attack, then the third, and so on.  They would eventually have to use pre-emptive force offensively to physically stop the dictators from attacking anymore, to somehow immobilize or subdue them.  If they can do this, their act of force might convince the dictators of the superiority of goodness, where negotiation and love and suffering failed.  Perhaps General Washington could train the Greek philosophers and Gandhi in the use of brute force.  Perhaps Buddha could learn some Kung Fu.  If the good guys cannot subdue the dictators, then they will be silenced, hurt, or killed themselves.  If the dictators are subdued, but remain dedicated to evil and cannot be converted to goodness, then the good guys will never be safe until they kill the dictators, for as long as they are alive they will be a threat.  And if they are resurrected, they will be a threat forever, until they personally choose to stop being predators.  That could take a long, long time.

 I don’t know who would win the debate, but I think it would finally depend on who best used weapons rather than words.  With the resurrection feature in play,  it would become a game of the bad guys crippling and silencing the good guys,  but being careful not to kill them.  Rip out their tongues, as Saddam Hussein did to some of his victims, but then bring in the doctors to stop the bleeding.  It would be very hard for the saints to debate the virtues of goodness with no tongues.  How long would it take for the bad guys to tire of this game?  A very long time, I think.  I fear that the bad guys would try to turn the conference into a perpetual hell for the good guys, reminiscent of a Nazi concentration camp.  For if they could dominate and abuse these greatest saints in history, it would demonstrate to the rest of us that evil is truly superior.  They would try to turn God’s experiment against him.  How long would it take for the good guys to tire of being crippled and silenced, but not killed?  Also a very long time.  Good guys tend to put up with suffering and sacrifice a lot better than bad guys.  I seem to have this tendency myself,  but I am beginning to think that it is not such a good idea as it is presented to be.

I think that sooner or later, in the conference, the saints and heroes of human history would come to the same conclusion.  They would have to use physical force and violence to subdue the bad guys, even killing them, until the bad guys truly saw the evil of their ways, and converted to goodness.  But this could take years, decades, or centuries.  I am confident that there is already a spiritual, metaphysical system set up and operating to handle evil people,  though it may take even longer to see any true conversion from evil to good.  It may take many lifetimes.  Meanwhile, we all suffer at their hands.

 If the universe were merely physical, limited to what we can see, touch, and hear, it seems that evil predators would dominate us all.  With no ethics, they have unlimited options—whatever it takes to win, they will do, including lying, stealing, betrayal, torture, murder, and genocide.  But the universe may be mostly metaphysical, or non-physical, which gives goodness the upper hand.  We are all eternal spirits occupying temporary bodies, and spiritual virtues will always trump physical capabilities.  Physical pain is temporary, while spiritual virtue is eternal.  The forces of goodness will eventually prevail,  on a universal scale.

 But that does not help us much here on Earth,  where the most evil human predators can create a prolonged, terrifying hell for their hapless victims, who can number in the billions.  

 In my fantasy conference, I think the greatest problem in the universe would become the greatest problem in the conference.  The good guys could not force the spiritual “pleasure” of virtue or ethics onto the bad guys, but the bad guys could force pain and abuse onto the good guys, shifting the focus from debate to domination.  This is what happens everywhere on this Earth, when serious conflicts arise.

 The same principle applies to all our lives, though physical force is rarely needed.  Instead, in our normal relationships, we can use words to good effect, also actions, labor and money.  We can choose who to support and who not to support.  But when we speak or act to demonstrate goodness, there will always be those who ignore our message and take advantage of our good will, for their own gain.  Whether the predator is a spouse, a parent, a child, a relative, a friend, a co-worker, or a stranger, a predator will show up to ruin our day or ruin our life.

 We urge mutual tolerance, but they demand submission (as our spouse sometimes does).  We advise open-mindedness, but they jump to conclusions (as political factions always do).  We support them, but they condemn us (as our kids sometimes do).  We preach morality, but they laugh at us and do as they please (as our kids sometimes do).  We tell the truth, but they use the lie as their main strategy (every family has such a troublemaker).  We give, but they only take, no matter how sweetly they may talk.  The sweeter they talk, the more we should be on guard.

 You have these predators in your life.  Everyone does, unless you are extremely lucky.  Even if you are a predator yourself, there are stronger or smarter predators preying on you.  Someday, when you decide to end the predation, conflict resolution skills or kind words of peace and love will not do the job.  A predator does not stop being a predator, just because his/her victims have become enlightened!  A predator does not stop being a predator, just because you are trying to “love” him or her through greater effort and sacrifice.  Even Jesus said we shouldn’t throw those pearls before swine (Matthew 7:6).  You have to stop being a willing victim  (but that is what most religion teaches, to be a willing victim).

 You must either separate yourself from the predator (the weak solution),  or you engage the predator in conflict (the strong solution).  Whether you disengage or engage, you should stop being a willing victim.  If you want to preach, you must hold your moral ground, and do your preaching from a standing position.  Do not preach from the prone position, with the predator’s foot on your chest.  Do not preach while nailed to a cross.  Jesus already did that, and most of the world knows about it, so what good would that do?  Jesus made his historic impact by being crucified and resurrected, but he claimed to be the Son of God.  Thus he claimed to be divine, and had a divine mission to accomplish.  You and I are not divine.  If you or I are nailed to a cross, we have obviously lost the battle with whatever evil we were fighting.  Any preaching we choose to do, would be interpreted by most people as the preaching of a loser.

 Apparently in the afterlife,  with the loss of physical bodies,  the threat of physical pain and physical death is removed,  which would be a fundamental game-changer in our relationships. Pains of the soul would still exist, such as fear, dread, guilt, regret, humiliation, depression, isolation, and these might be forced upon us.  But without physical bodies, no one could kill us or cripple us.  However, until we die, we must consider the formidable threats of physical pain and death, in almost everything we do.  It is true that many things are worth dying for, if we must.  But it is even better to escape death and live for those things as long as we can.  

 So, do not preach from a cross, and do not preach while accepting abuse, with the predator’s leash on your neck, or his/her hand in your wallet or purse! Try to speak or write from a position of strength and dignity, have the intelligence to figure out if you are being preyed upon or not, and have the courage to back up your words with action.  For as we all teach our kids, actions speak much louder than words.  To paraphrase Mark Twain, “I cannot hear what you are saying, because your actions deafen me!”  Words can be very powerful, but only if people heed them.  The power of words must be shared equally by the speaker and the listener.  But only a fool will continue to speak in words only, when his/her tormentor is speaking with actions.  The language of action trumps the language of words;  action renders words powerless.  When predators force pain upon us, action is the only language of salvation.

 My solution to the great storm of confusion regarding moral conflict and enforcement of justice can be reduced to the following simple bullet points:

1.       There really are good guys and bad guys.

2.       The bad guys really do know that they are bad.

3.       The bad guys are doing damage and crimes every day, to take what they want.

4.       The bad guys try to hide their badness, or act like good guys, to escape detection. 

5.       The good guys must try to detect the bad guys.

6.       The good guys must try to stop the bad guys before they commit their crimes.

7.       The good guys must try to catch the bad guys after they commit their crimes.

8.       The good guys will not have any peace until they accomplish 5, 6, and 7.

 We, the good guys and gals, just accomplished bullet point 7 with Osama Bin Laden, and this was a great victory for goodness.  Dozens of books have probably been written about every bullet point above, in agreement or in argument.  But even if everyone agreed with my bullet points, the bad guys would still be bad, engaging in predatory abuse, and it would still be hard to detect them and stop them.

 We can never solve the greatest problem in the universe, because we can never force virtue on anyone, or prevent someone from forcing pain on us.  But we can certainly reduce its impact.  We can continue to try to act in virtuous ways, so that others can choose to support us and join us.  We must also try to change the widespread pacifist misinterpretation of love and goodness.  Pacifism is a simplistic philosophical and moral concept that is basically good, but woefully incomplete.  I will next explain how I think it is incomplete.

Or perhaps not.  My next philosophical topic is The Golden Rule, but I do not want to burden my friends in this world with things that do not interest them.  I do not know if this is worth your time and thoughts, or not.  If you want more of this, let me know.  If I get no comments, I will return to the simplistic refuge of current events, or cool videos, or music.  Philosophy is both exhilarating and exhausting for me,  but I am trying to write it to reach out to my friends and neighbors in this world.  You don’t have to agree with my points.  Probably about half would generally agree with me, and half would disagree.  But if no one is wanting it, then my effort is wasted and I will move on to other things that need doing, like fixing that leaky faucet I hear dripping in the kitchen.  There should be a “like this” button somewhere near the bottom of this article, and maybe a “don’t like this” button to click.  For the next article, current events and YouTube videos are a lot easier to deal with than the universal questions of our existence.  So let me know, if you want more of this.  If not, I am going dirt-bike riding.

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About goldenmeantx
Truth seeker, fact finder, amateur philosopher, amateur historian, ex-soldier, ex-motorcycle racer, world traveler, rancher, hunter, gun owner, dirt bike rider, mountain bicycle rider, husband, father, grandfather, hard worker, good friend to all who put up with me, and even some who don't.

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