Reasoned argument and debate only go so far...

Spotted this on Google Plus recently. Sad to see that reasoned argument and debate only go so far with some people.

Anyways, gives me a chance to pull out my 'tolerance' card!

Tolerance or something more...

I've used this image in a post previously as it seemed to make a good point. However there was something about the word 'tolerance' and how it's being used today.

We can have a look at the Oxford English dictionary definition to get an initial thought of how tolerance is defined:

Definition of tolerance


  • 1 [mass noun] the ability or willingness to tolerate the existence of opinions or behaviour that one dislikes or disagrees with:the tolerance of corruptionan advocate of religious tolerance
  • 2the capacity to endure continued subjection to something such as a drug or environmental conditions without adverse reaction:the desert camel shows the greatest tolerance to dehydration[count noun]:various species of diatoms display different tolerances to acid
  • diminution in the body’s response to a drug after continued use:the body’s tolerance to Ecstasy builds up very quickly
  • 3an allowable amount of variation of a specified quantity, especially in the dimensions of a machine or part:250 parts in his cars were made to tolerances of one thousandth of an inch


late Middle English (denoting the action of bearing hardship, or the ability to bear pain and hardship): via Old French from Latin tolerantia, from tolerare (see tolerate)

From the above it's obvious that definition 3 is referring to a mechanistic application and definitions 1 and 2 are perhaps more relevant to social interaction and society. It's interesting that both definitions 1 and 2 do not put 'tolerance' in the scope of 'approval'. In other words 'tolerance' is something temporary and transient. 'Tolerance' in itself does not imply approval.

As a Christian I see many areas of conflict between the orthodox teachings of the church and the ways of the world reflected in the ever changing attitudes of the wider society. As Christians we are often accused of intolerance and our 'tolerance' is demanded but I do wonder if there is not an intolerance behind what is demanded of us and the church.

To tolerate someone else's morals, behaviour, religion, philosophy, ethics or politics simply means to accept albeit with a mild form of disapproval. When we as Christians and the church or ekklesia are asked to show 'tolerance' I do wonder if the motive behind that call is really a call to approve and that our 'tolerance' will not be accepted for long?

It's good to have a choice

Seeing Ed Miliband getting booed at the TUC organised Anti-Austerity march for his cuts-lite remarks reminded me that...

US Healthcare Explained

New release from the excellent Captain Ska.

Coming soon to an NHS™ near you. Don't say we didn't have our eyes open.

Intolerant of tolerance

There's one or two subjects that spring to mind where a card like this will come in handy!

Nice one Roger!

Foie gras factory project in China scrapped after Roger Moore's campaign against 'torture in a tin' | Mail Online

Dead chuffed that Creek Projects Investments have succumbed to public pressure and have withdrawn from the building of a Foie Gras factory in China’s Jiangxi Province. Apparently eight million ducks and two million geese would have been tortured and slaughtered every year to produce 1,000 tonnes of foie gras.

When James Bond says "Don't eat Foie Gras" then one would be wise to listen.

Young Anarchist's Weekly

Yes I know it's an Anarchist stereotype but Popular Tunisian children's magazine faces prosecution over article on how to make a Molotov cocktail | Mail Online

Makes the Beano look like, well, The Dandy.

(Me Arabic's not up to much so I'm assuming that the Daily Mail isn't doing it's usual butcher's job)

What Book?

Time to treat myself to another book to go on my Kindle. Problem is choosing one!

Any book that catches my eye I add to my account so I have a continually growing list of books to choose from. What I choose depends a lot on how I feel so at the moment I have a list of three books. So which one do I choose?

Viral Jesus: Recovering the Contagious Power of the Gospel by Ross Rohde

Jesus: A Theography by Frank Viola, Leonard Sweet

Any suggestions most welcome!

Some Music of Quality

Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel - Sebastian

Delilah the Pineapple

University atheist society ordered out of freshers' fair for displaying 'blasphemous' pineapple called Mohammed
So said the headline in the Daily Mail.

University of Reading
University of Reading (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Apparently the Reading University Atheist, Humanist and Secularist Society (RAHS) said they wanted to celebrate free speech and promote their upcoming debate 'Should we respect religion?' So they popped a pineapple on their stall and labelled it 'the Prophet Mohammed' but they were ordered to remove the offending fruit by union staff who said their actions were causing 'upset and distress' to a number of Muslim students and other societies.

I think that they've answered their own question with a big, fat no. But I do wonder why people seem to take delight in deliberately causing offence under the banner of 'free speech'. It's not as if there's a historical trend in naming pineapples Mohammed, or that all pineapples are really named 'Delilah' and they're challenging gender norms, or it forms a theological mainstay of Dawkinology. I can only assume that their egos know no bounds in their insensitivity to other people and causing such offence to their Muslims neighbours gives them a thrill.

However, I do have a grudging admiration in that they have moved on from the soft target of Christ and Christians. Less of a Born to be Wild as long as I'm home for me tea and more of a Born to be Wild as long as I don't have to walk home in the dark type of free speech warrior.

For me I think I'll take more regard of what Paul says rather than worship at the altar of free speech with this lot at the RAHS:
Romans 12:17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have good regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.

Branson Relaunches West Coast Main Line Bid

Now that the West Coast Main Line franchise is up in the air again it seems that Richard Branson has reviewed his bid to make it more profitable for shareholders provide a better deal for taxpayers.

Bet it's a non-union driver as well!

The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin

The Dispossessed (SF Masterworks, #16)The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

You probably look at this book and think it's a sci-fi novel, and you'd be right and you'd be wrong. It is a sci-fi novel, and a very good one, but it is just a vehicle for the main theme of the book. The main theme being the interaction between Anarchism (anarcho-syndicalism) and Capitalism. for good measure Socialism is thrown in as well.

The story is centred around a character called Shevek who is a citizen of a planet called Anarres. Anarres is a desolate planet where society functions under anarchistic principles. Anarres was colonised by people from Urras who left and fled to Anarres to escape the rampant capitalism of Urras. They were anarchists who followed the teachings of Odo, a woman who had put developed a concept of anarcho-syndicalism.

Apart from these two planets a number of other races are intertwined in the novel which represent Socialism and other forms of civilisation.

I have to say that the way of life under anarcho-syndicalism played out in the book was attractive and yet was repulsive to me personally. The working together of the people on the harsh world of Anarres came across as somehow noble but the way personal relationships happened was somehow deflating.

The way the book looked at the clash between the person and the anarchic society was very thought provoking, and you can see so much that links in with our society today.

If you haven't read this book then read it, if you have any interest in political systems then you should also read it. Highly recommended.

View all my reviews

iLaughed iDid

Decisions at work

This is so true.

Pussy Riot and the Peace Prize

English: Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, Mosc...
Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, Moscow.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I've tried my best to ignore the antics of 'Pussy Riot' since they came to the mainstream media's attention with their ridiculous stunt in Moscow's Cathedral of Christ The Saviour. Their stupid arty-farty behaviour has somehow gathered a large measure of support amongst certain sections of the left. I think there's a special name given to this type of arty protest, can't for the life of me remember it though.

Not really sure of what they stand for or are protesting against either. Perhaps it's a case of
"What are you rebelling against?"
"What have you got?"
Johnny Strabler, The Wild One (1953)
So Yoko Ono, with the backing of Amnesty International is bestowing upon them the LennonOno Grant for Peace and the EU is nominating them for the Sakharov Prize.

I wonder if the EU will be showing special screenings at Strasbourg of Pussy Riot's antics in the museum or with the chicken in the supermarket? What such infantile behaviour has to do with peace or protest is beyond me.