Islam Without Extremes: The Muslim Case for Liberty

Q&A with author and New York Times columnist Mustafa Akyol.

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"There is a tradition of Islam that actually values enterprise and free trade," says Mustafa Akyol, a New York Times columnist and author of Islam Without Extremes: A Muslim Case for Liberty. "Islam was born as a very trade-friendly religion. Prophet Muhammad was a merchant himself."

Akyol says the current state of affairs in the Islamic world can lead people to feel pessimistic about its future and the prospect of a free society. But "to extrapolate this out to all Muslims and to say 'this is what Islam probably is,' would be the biggest mistake," Akyol says. "What Islam can be, and what Islam was in the past, is a different discussion."

While the historical basis for compatibility with the West exists, there are still many challenges that face the Islamic world. Akyol says a change to Islam along the lines of the Protestant Reformation isn't necessarily what's needed. "What we need is the Enlightenment…not Luther, but John Locke."

Reason TV's Nick Gillespie sat down with Akyol at the International Students for Liberty Conference to discuss the historical relationship between Islam and free trade, how Islamists reshaped the religion into political authoritarianism, and whether or not Islam needs a reformation or an enlightenment.

Produced by Mark McDaniel. Cameras by McDaniel, Joshua Swain, and Todd Krainin.

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  1. Does the Muslim case for liberty include beheading and stoning opponents?

    1. I bet this comment is a perfect microcosm of the bigotry shitshow that is sure to be unfurling in the thread below.

      [scrolls down]

      Sigh. I guess some individuals never move past the third level of Maslow’s pyramid. Or is it the second level?

      1. The comment is valid. The present Muslim world is dominated by deranged and violent idiots. This is, to some degree, the fault of the West, because the West has (for decades) appeased the nuts while punishing those moderates who were not modern enough for the West’s tender sensibilities. Example; we undermined the Shah of Iran because instead of applying twentieth century Civil Rights sensibilities he acted like a fairly enlightened early 19th century monarch. Consequently Iran is now run by a cabal of 13th century nutballs.

        IF we could arrange to punish the nuts, while supporting any actual moderates (you know, people who behaved as if it were at LEAST 1750) consistently for a century or so, the Muslim world would no doubt be a good deal less insane.

        1. I agree with your comment, but we didn’t undermine the Shah (if by Shah you mean the guy in the seventies); we installed him in 1953 during the Iranian coup organized by the US and the UK. The guy we tore down was a prime minister of a relatively secular and moderate government by middle eastern standards. (Mosaddegh)

          So we installed a brutal dictator that would do our bidding and he even got F-14s! Yeah, that pissed off the Iranians.

          1. This is important. We overthrew a decent liberal reformer and 25 years later we get the Ayatollahs.

            1. We overthrew a decent communist reformer…..

              FIFY

      2. It is reason.com after all, where Republicans play libertarians.

        1. It is reason.com after all, where Republicans progtards play libertarians.

      3. Yes, to be sure Islam was a very trade-friendly religion. Especially the slave trade.

        Mohammed being a renowned slave owner himself.

        And how can any good Muslim argue that Mohammed was wrong to own slaves?

    2. “What we need…”

      Yes. And still needing it.

      Until they get what they need – minimize imports.

  2. If we pulled out of the middle east altogether, would the muslim countries stop blowing each other up?

    That is a legitimate questions for the professor.

    We are no saints but haven’t they been doing this stuff for a century? And I do admit that some of it is our fault but they seem to be the best at it.

    1. I’ve heard it argued right here that it’s a shame the Ottomans are gone, because they kept peace among the Muslims so well. It’s only American intervention that fucked things up.

      1. We have a lot of blood on our hands but that is for the last 25 years. We are no slouch but they have had major issues for a long time.

        Also, I have read the exact opposite regarding muslim and market function. I have read that muslim law does not advocate free markets and contract law but rather deference to the religious law which places priority not on free markets and personal prosperity but rather commerce based on the rule of the text.

        In fact, I believe the article was publish on the CATO website discussing why islam has had such a hard time assimilating western market function even though they sit in the cradle of civilization.

        1. For one thing, religious prohibitions against insurance and lending at interest hasn’t exactly made doing business in much of the Islamic world an easy thing. Hans Hoppe argued persuasively that Islam is second only to Hindu, among the major religions, as the least conducive to capital accumulation.

      2. According to my history books, it was the French and British that split up the Ottoman empire. Then the British took over the Palestine mandate, and after decades just gave up and walked away because they could not get the various tribes/Islam factions to any kind of agreement. Then the whole problem was solved when the UN created Israel, and the Arab nations absorbed the displaced persons who did not want to live in the new nation.
        (Well, sort of)

        1. and the Arab nations absorbed the displaced persons who did not want to live in the new nation.

          My sarc meter must not be functioning correctly. This is a joke right?

          1. Of course it must be. Sorry for doubting you.

      3. Maybe there should have been a Muslim Ottoman pope. Then he could excommunicate neighborhood nutballs who spout the Quoran to justify their own quest for imposing their will on the world.

  3. I really can’t. This one is so far over the top and such complete bullshit. It’s purposely trying so hard to believe something that just isn’t true and never was.

    Go argue with this guy.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Im0IisZ77QI

    1. This. The horseshit getting laid in this place seems to get thicker by the day.

      Muhammad was not a “merchant”. He started off as a caravan raider (a land pirate basically), and then eventually graduated to becoming one of the pre-eminent tribal warlords in all of history.

      1. Well, he sold a lot of slaves – I guess that makes him a “merchant”. Sort of like calling pirates “traders” because they do eventually sell off their stolen goods.

        1. I was just going to say something similar… well done!

      2. He started off as a caravan raider (a land pirate basically), and then eventually graduated to becoming one of the pre-eminent tribal warlords in all of history.

        *sarc-o-meter off*

        Look, the point is, Jesus Christ was crucified and Christians were slaughtered for entertainment. Then The Crusades and Inquisition happened. So Christianity and Judaism are permanently nixed as religions of peace too. Even atheistic societies slaughtered people by the millions. So give Muslims a break, wouldja? You freaking fascists need to just quit lumping people together behaviorally just so you can judge their ideology.

        *sarc-o-meter on*

  4. “”There is a tradition of Islam that actually values enterprise and free trade,” says Mustafa Akyol, a New York Times columnist and author of Islam Without Extremes: A Muslim Case for Liberty. “Islam was born as a very trade-friendly religion. Prophet Muhammad was a merchant himself.””

    No no no, this can’t possibly be correct. Why I’ve been told that Muslims are barbaric gutter people who want to impose Sharia law everywhere they go and are incompatible with the West. That is why we have to build eleventy foot walls to keep the Muslim dogs out of our pristine gated Western communities. But recognizing the humanity of individual Muslims is the utter last thing that we should do. What, do you want the terrorists to win or something??? Do you hate America???

    1. No no no, this can’t possibly be correct.

      I appreciate your sarcasm, but you’re inadvertently right, it can’t possibly be correct. Muslims are a social catastrophe in every western country which has the misfortune to host a sizable minority of them.

      1. Muslims are a social catastrophe in every western country which has the misfortune to host a sizable minority of them.

        Except the ones who aren’t.

        I don’t think it’s too much to ask of a libertarian website that individual Muslims be judged on their own merits, or lack thereof, just like how every other individual on the planet ought to be judged.

        1. So we shouldn’t believe our lyin’ eyes. Let’s just accept bands of people hell-bent on religious tyranny with no intention of assimilating – because one of them is actually quite nice and friendly!

          1. ” Let’s just accept bands of people hell-bent on religious tyranny with no intention of assimilating”

            Breitbart.com is that way —>

            1. Salon is just about right where Reason is now.

          2. I think you have it backwards… Your position seems to be to keep out bands of peaceful people just trying to improve their lives and get out from under their own tyranny because a VAST minority are hell-bent on religious tyranny.

        2. “I don’t think it’s too much to ask of a libertarian website that individual Muslims be judged on their own merits, or lack thereof, just like how every other individual on the planet ought to be judged.”

          I don’t think it’s too much to ask of a libertarian website, or any website, or any individual, to judge Ideologies on their ideas. That naturally doesn’t mean all those who claim the title follow the ideology perfectly, but the existence of such people does nothing to alter the issues of said ideas.

          Not all Communists are evil monsters. Communism is a monstrous Ideology because of its ideas. Not all Feminists are man-hating harpies. Feminism is a terrible ideology because of its ideas.

          1. Hell, some Nazis were decent people that cared deeply for the plight of the Jews. Is it too much to ask that one be able to speak generally about Nazi beliefs and practices without constantly qualifying the argument by mentioning the good-heartedness of Oscar Schindler?

            1. Hell, some Nazis were decent people that cared deeply for the plight of the Jews.

              Given recent protests, bouts of vandalism, and false flags, it certainly is entertaining to reflect on Dolchsto?legende.

            2. The mistake in your collectivist generalizations is to assume that a billion Muslims hold some kind of coherent ideology, and that the root of this ideology depends on aggression. This is a completely made-up belief that you cling to in order to bolster your hatred of the Other.

              Serious question: how many Muslims do you personally know? Because I know quite a few, and not a single one of them wants to blow anyone up or impose Sharia law. Shocking, isn’t it?

              1. The mistake in your collectivist generalizations is to assume that a billion Muslims hold some kind of coherent ideology, and that the root of this ideology depends on aggression.

                Lots of Nazis (and Germans at large) were fed a false narrative that wasn’t exactly wrong, wasn’t rigidly ahered to, and wasn’t exactly bad. Karl Marx was, in fact, culturally-speaking Jewish.

                1. What’s your point? You can’t call the average German in Germany during Hitler’s reign a Nazi. Most of the German citizens had little to do with the Nazi ideology. That is exactly the mistake people make when they call all Muslims some kind of extremists.

                  1. You can’t call the average German in Germany during Hitler’s reign a Nazi.

                    “We” can call (pro-)Jewish, non-Germans half a century after the dissolution of the Nazi Party Nazis. Is the intent to impugn the German people or to convey the notion that the supposed Nazis in question are stereotypical violent oppressors? Because not all violent oppressors are explicit or copiously violent or oppressive. Some speak softly and carry big sticks. Not literally every one of them and not literally big sticks… Maybe you and I can go on at greater length about the nuanced semantics between naming and invoking the name of an ideology vs. naming and/or invoking the name of each individual subscriber to any given ideology like a couple of fucking grammar Nazis.

                2. Are you an idiot?

                  The mistake in your collectivist generalizations is to assume that a billion Muslims hold some kind of coherent ideology, and that the root of this ideology depends on aggression. This is a completely made-up belief that you cling to in order to bolster your hatred of the Other.

                  They are called ‘Muslims because they share an ideology. Islam is an ideology. All religions are.

                  Germans are not necessarily Nazis. But Nazis are necessarily Nazis. In fact, I can pretty definitively state that all adherents of the National Socialist ideology are Nazis.

                  Likewise, all adherents of Islam are Muslims. All Muslims are Muslims

                  I’m not ‘collectivizing’, I’m taking individuals at their word. If they call themselves ‘muslim’, then I can safely expect that they are Islamic.

                  See?

              2. Not a single one will tell you that they want to impose Sharia law. Not a single one will tell you that they believe in militant proselytizing. Not a single one will sit down with you for an in depth discussion of all aspects of their belief. Because you are an infidel, and not yet worthy of learning the truth. Perhaps you should talk to a few ex-muslims who are under a death sentence for converting to Christianity. The root of their ideology does not depend on aggression. It will use aggression only when other methods fail.

                1. Oh, so we shouldn’t trust anything any Muslim says, because he is lying and secretly plotting to impose Sharia law? Do you even know how insane you sound? Why should I believe anything you say? Why shouldn’t I think you are just secretly plotting to establish a Christian theocracy?

              3. The mistake in your collectivist generalizations is to assume that a billion Muslims hold some kind of coherent ideology

                Okay so on what basis do you get to classify them all as “Muslims” since they are all soooooo different in their ideological beliefs? Collectivism!?!@#$?@#%?@!$%^??!#^?^$!?

                1. Because they presumably self-identify as Muslims. But their self-identification should not be stretched into a belief in a rigid adherence to a particular ideology.

                  1. Because they presumably self-identify as Muslims. But their self-identification should not be stretched into a belief in a rigid adherence to a particular ideology.

                    By the way, do you feel that any of the 52 genders are not legitimate? No of course you don’t, it’s all about subjective identity so by god there could be millions of valid genders.

                2. Okay so on what basis do you get to classify them all as “Muslims” since they are all soooooo different in their ideological beliefs? Collectivism!?!@#$?@#%?@!$%^??!#^?^$!?

                  You seriously don’t understand the difference? Do you think a Unitarian and a Southern Baptist share the same worldview?

                  1. They’re Christians, no? I know Unitarians don’t do the trinity thing, so some Christians don’t consider them Christians, so that is yet again, the basis for a bad analogy. I have yet to meet a Methodist who can tell me how is church as different from the Baptists, or an evangelical who can tell me much the same. Of course there are lots of different groups within groups, it’s still reasonable to acknowledge the common threads between them.

                    1. The difference between Methodists and Baptists is that Methodists speak to each other when they meet at the liquor store.

                3. Sufi, Sunni and Shi’ite for a start?

          2. Exactly FS. There is no need for the constant qualifiers. It is generally understood that when we talk about groups, we aren’t saying “all X are Y” but that we are noting the general trend, and that is all.

            ChemJeff and the apologists’ argument would be like trying to say that we shouldn’t acknowledge that there is a serious disadvantage in general to children in broken homes, vs those who come from intact families, simply because some of us who grew up with a single mom turned out great.

            Or any number of examples.

            DON’T LOOK AT THAT DATA! IT’S BIGOTED AND IT MIGHT SHOW THAT NOT ALL PEOPLE ARE THE SAME!!!!11!!

            1. I’m not saying “don’t look at the data”. I’m saying not to make sweeping generalizations based on statistical data alone. That happens far too often when it comes to Muslims, or generally speaking, to any group which can be successfully labeled as “people who are *over there*”, rather than “people that I interact with on a daily basis”. It’s easy to generalize about people that you never have to come into contact with.

            2. And sophists know this, but they fall back on their “not all” quip at the first sight of something inconvenient that pretty much everyone knows to be true.

              “Everyone is the same! Everyone is different!”—–you can’t argue with that, because if you take on one side of that internally contradictory coin, they’ll act like the other side is the real argument.

              1. “Everyone is the same! Everyone is different!”

                The collectivists want to make the former to be correct, the individualists want o make the latter to be correct. My point is that we should strive to be on the individualist side rather than on the collectivist side. When in doubt, don’t lump people into groups.

                1. The sophists (#NotAll) are arguing both at the same time. Everyone is the same, so a Somali immigrant is just as valuable and prone to uncivil behavior as a Finnish immigrant. While at the same time, everyone is different so you can’t judge a Muslim rapist too harshly because his crime is considered acceptable behavior where he comes from. Rubbish.

                  I don’t like communists, despite the fact that somewhere out there is a communist who doesn’t want to steal my property and bury my children in a mass grave. I’m sure he’s a great guy, but that doesn’t change my opinion about communists generally. A communist is decent insofar as he is un-communist. A nazi is decent insofar as he is distant from nazi orthodoxy. A Muslim is decent insofar as he is un-Islamic. I treat Muslims just as I would members of other reprehensible belief systems, and when it’s apparent that they buck the trend of their ideological kin, I’ll soften my position on that specific individual. But even then, unlike he children of nazis and communists, it’s almost a forgone conclusion that the children of Muslims will grow up to be Muslims themselves and there is a statistical trend for those children to be more devout and more fundamental than their parents were in their approach to Islamic beliefs. No thanks, we’re better off without them as a group, even if there are just some perfectly swell guys in their midst. The west gains nothing from their presence in significant numbers.

                  1. “A communist is decent insofar as he is un-communist.”

                    So you have judged the *person* to be a bad person because of that person’s beliefs, rather than because of the person’s actions. This is the same moral basis as thoughtcrime, essentially. Why is this version of thoughtcrime any different than when the SJW’s do it with respect to racism or homophobia?

                    1. So you have judged the *person* to be a bad person because of that person’s beliefs, rather than because of the person’s actions.

                      Unless you mean he should be a rational being completely incapable of making a decision without explicitly putting the effects of that decision into action, you don’t have a point.

                      That is to say, by your very same argument/token, that unless his judgement explicitly involves something like “He needs to be shot.” and instantly confers the same action as opposed to something eminently more reasonable like say, “He shouldn’t receive my tax dollars, if I can help it.” then his judgement isn’t intrinsically actionable nor about the specific person.

                    2. No, I am not suggesting that FS’s assessment of communists as “bad people” by virtue of their beliefs alone in any way implies FS wants to commit acts of aggression against them. FS has the freedom and the liberty to judge anyone however he/she wishes even if I disagree with the standards by which he/she judges said individuals.

                    3. So you have judged the *person* to be a bad person because of that person’s beliefs, rather than because of the person’s actions.

                      Yeah I didn’t say I would kill him for his beliefs, I might kill him if his actions enter a narrow scope of behaviors unconducive to my well-being, but fuck yes I’ll judge him for his beliefs. If a person’s belief is that I should be enserfed, enslaved or killed if the believer had their way in society, why wouldn’t I judge them for that?

                      This is the same moral basis as thoughtcrime, essentially.

                      Seriously this is just retarded. Are you telling me that you don’t judge people for thier beliefs? In fact you just laid out mild judgement of SJWs, don’t you know that #Not-All-SJWs? Why do you judge them for their beliefs? It’s just what they believe! How can you even say what their beliefs are if you didn’t ask every single one? Why are you so collectivist?

                  2. But the whole point of the interview was that it is possible for Islam itself to undergo a liberalization. At the point in time when its religious system was undergirded by sound Aristotelian philosophy, it was not a violent belief system. Religion must be informed by philosophy, otherwise it degenerates to the fundamentalist blind belief that we find in the Islamic World today. Communism, on the other hand, is a BAD philosophy that is practically impossible to reform. It has no rituals or liturgy, so it’s not a religion per se.

                    1. “it is possible”

                      It hasn’t

            3. We make generalizations on people over here too. It’s quite useful. When you don’t interact with people (for me, let’s say Californians) it’s useful to take the general trends and attitudes of Californians, and attribute said trends and attitudes to the culture of California.

              We do this with everyone. Conservatives. Liberals. Libertarians. Anarchists. Feminists. The demographics of the next town down the road. It’s not just people “over there”, it’s everywhere. Because we can’t know them all, we will invariably generalize different groups. By virtue of not being able to know them, I will generalize them.

              I don’t know why you object to making generalizations about people in a different part of the world, with completely different values. There’s no logical difference brought about by their proximity. If anything, their lack of proximity, and vastness in numbers, makes generalizing them more of a necessity when dealing with the states they are from or the mobs they comprise as they seek asylum en masse.

              1. I don’t know why you object to making generalizations about people in a different part of the world, with completely different values.

                Because it’s dehumanizing and collectivizing.

                1. So you don’t know anything about the Chinese people because you personally haven’t interviewed all 1.7 billion of them. Shit you can’t even say for sure that “nazis are bad” because you presumably haven’t interacted with every single nazi. It’s impossible to not generalize about groups and still know a damn thing about the world.

            4. Because it’s dehumanizing and collectivizing.

              It is actually quite humanizing, as it is naturally a human behavior. We acknowledge that they are people who share something in common.

              I’m sure you’ll come back with some sort of “but it is used to make them out to be inhumane / barbarians / monsters” to which the natural reply is that some humans–perhaps a very large number actually–are indeed barbaric. It doesn’t make them not human. But it also doesn’t mean we should tolerate said barbarity.

              1. It is dehumanizing and collectivizing even if the collectivism yields a falsely positive view of the group in question. If for example I run around saying “Asians are good at math”, it is unfair to the particular Asian individuals who worked hard and studied hard in order to get good at math, as it denies them the results of their individual efforts, instead just attributing it to some bullshit racial classification.

                You’re denying the individualism of the members of the group in question. I don’t see why this should be considered a praiseworthy endeavor, especially on a libertarian platform.

                1. “Asians are good at math”

                  But Asians generally are better at math and all around analytical thinking than other groups. They’re over-represented in STEM fields and in univeristy mathematics and engineering departments. I’m not denigrating individual hard work by saying that either, you can debate whether it’s genetics or culture that award this tendency, but it’s just a fact. #NotAllAsians

                  Sticking fingers in your ears and screaming about collectivism as a response to that fact is not an argument.

                  1. I’m not denigrating individual hard work by saying that either

                    But you are, by even bringing up the racial angle. The whole premise is that there is some racial connection between being good at math. If that is not your implication, then why even bring up the racial component at all?

                    1. Yeah, but the “Asians are good at math” trope really is shorthand for the fact that traditionally east Asian cultures value education, particularly traditional education, very highly, and so there are cultural norms that support academic study, and in this country we’ve been so shit at STEM for the past few decades that we see the product of academic dedication and think it’s unusual. It has nothing to do with Asian people having some sort of genetic predilection for calculus, it’s just that those cultures tend to support academic work in ways traditional American cultures have stopped doing. So it’s not to say that Asian people who are good at math didn’t work hard to get there, it’s that there may have been cultural motivations to put in that work that aren’t in play with other subgroups.

                    2. So it’s not to say that Asian people who are good at math didn’t work hard to get there, it’s that there may have been cultural motivations to put in that work that aren’t in play with other subgroups.

                      Collectivism.!&*^$*^&*! I’m melting!!!! I’m melting!!!! /chemjeff

                    3. But you are, by even bringing up the racial angle. The whole premise is that there is some racial connection between being good at math. If that is not your implication, then why even bring up the racial component at all?

                      Firstly, you brought it up initially. Secondly, NE Asians tend to be the product of NE Asian cultures, these cultures place a strong emphasis on academic achievement in respectable fields of study. Do you deny the reality of Asians tending to do well in those fields of study? If not, then stop the sophistry, there’s obviously a common thread, whether it’s genetic or cultural is for another discussion. But the fact remains (clutch tightly to your pearls and find your fainting couch before you read this)…………. ………………… ………….. there does exist a certain tendency within a group. *gasp*

                  2. How would you feel if I made assumptions about you based on the arguments you are presenting here? Should I just automatically assume you are dumb redneck? Or that you have no culture? Or that probably haven’t read a book in quite a while? Or that you eat nothing but fast food? That would be pretty stupid, wouldn’t it?

                    1. How would you feel if I made assumptions about you based on the arguments you are presenting here?

                      Emotionally devastated, surely.

                      Should I just automatically assume you are dumb redneck?

                      You think that is the same thing as stating an empirical fact that NE Asians tend to perform well relative to other groups in STEM fields and STEM training?

                      Or that you have no culture?

                      I have yet to meet a human being that doesn’t have one. So no.

                      Or that probably haven’t read a book in quite a while? Or that you eat nothing but fast food? That would be pretty stupid, wouldn’t it?

                      Since there you have no data, empirical or even anecdotal, yes that would be stupid.

                      Maybe you should take a break from making analogies for a while. You need more practice.

          3. I agree with you 100%. I just wish the discourse on Islam focused on the ideas, rather than trashing the people who haven’t done anything wrong. Too often, the discussion leads to KEEP ALL THE MUSLIMS OUT or some such nonsense.

            People are free to believe whatever they wish. Communism, Islam, Christianity, feminism, radical anarcho-libertarianism, whatever. If someone wants to come here, whatever their reason, whatever they believe, as long as they will make this country a better place (broadly defined), I’m all for it.

            1. See, this is where your idea breaks down though. By what standard should they make the country better? Do you think that teaching your children ideas that are 100% diametrically opposed to the values of your host nation is making it better? Will their children make it better, if they believe all the Kafir must be subjugated? If they think women should be required to have 4 witnesses to prove rape, or face stoning? If they think all who insult the Prophet or Allah must face death? etc, etc, etc

              I see no issue with “Keep all the Muslims out” inasmuch as we are talking about new ones immigrating. It is within the scope of small “L” libertarianism, as it is the nation-state’s prerogative to decide who immigrates to it.

              There is no reason to believe that simply by handing someone an American issued ID they will suddenly embrace the enlightenment, and be just like us, and teach their children said values. That is dreaming, and ignoring the history of nations, peoples, and tribes.

              1. “Do you think that teaching your children ideas that are 100% diametrically opposed to the values of your host nation is making it better?”

                So what is the alternative? Central planning of one form or another? Either there will be central planning on the education that children receive – only the good patriotic facts in good patriotic schools! – or there will be central planning on who is allowed to come here – only “good people”, not the “bad people”, where of course “good” and “bad” are defined by the people in charge according to their own corrupt methods. I don’t like it either that some Muslims teach their children that Jews and gays and whomever else are bad people who should be stoned to death. But I believe the way to stop people from teaching their kids this type of stuff is not via force, but via example.

                I see no issue with “Keep all the Muslims out”

                Replace “Muslims” with “subversives”. Now what do you think?

              2. But is it really an intrinsic part of Islam to believe that all Kafir must be subjugated or women need four witnesses to prove rape, etc? Or is that belief system subject to a different, more liberal interpretation? Ethics is derived from metaphysics and epistemology. (I agree with Ayn Rand on that) At one time there was a branch of liberal Islamic philosophy that argued that a literal interpretation of the Quoran was worship of a book, and therefore, Un-Islamic. That idea got shot down by force, and the imposition of violence became the norm. But it is not impossible to change.

            2. So what is the alternative? Central planning of one form or another?

              Whether we like it or not, we have centrally planned schools. If you are going to have them, they should teach Enlightenment values. Preferably we wouldn’t have them, but I don’t live in that world. But either way, it has nothing to do with my point that people instill in their children their values, and these values are terrible, backwards ones, which we should avoid importing into our society, which is not to say banning from society. It is within the proper scope of government to determine who they allow into their country.

              Replace “Muslims” with “subversives”. Now what do you think?

              This is perhaps the dumbest response I’ve ever seen. Are you implying that we should bring in large numbers of people who are intent on subverting our laws, culture and traditions? That this is a good idea, and will make our nation better? That saying “No” to such a notion is a bad idea?

              I see no issue with a nation-state saying “These people are advocating subverting our laws, customs, etc and we do not need to import more of them like some fine wine to be distributed across the country.” It’s no more evil or aggressive than me telling you “No, you can’t move into my home, and I’m certainly not going to pay for you to move in on top of that.”

              1. Okay, so just to be clear. You don’t favor central planning of education, but you do favor central planning of social values. The government should decide that the people with the “correct” values should be let in, and everyone else should stay out. How is this type of central planning going to succeed when all the other attempts at central planning have failed?

                Are you implying that we should bring in large numbers of people who are intent on subverting our laws, culture and traditions?

                Who defines what constitutes subversion? Realistically speaking, the government cynically defines the term in order to perpetuate its own power. So Muslims and anarcho-libertarians would both be classified as “subversive”.

                It’s no more evil or aggressive than me telling you “No, you can’t move into my home, and I’m certainly not going to pay for you to move in on top of that.”

                the nation =/= your house

            3. Okay, so just to be clear. You don’t favor central planning of education, but you do favor central planning of social values.

              We live in a Republic we can vie for which values are represented. The dominant values will be. If that is “Let everyone in” then it will be so. This isn’t “Central Planning” inside of society, but a society choosing who to invite to live within it. A society / polity has the right to do this, especially if their tax dollars are used to import them, and then providing them with entitlements once they arrive.

              Who defines what constitutes subversion? Realistically speaking, the government cynically defines the term in order to perpetuate its own power. So Muslims and anarcho-libertarians would both be classified as “subversive”.

              Society. Tradition. This is a simple concept. If they are subversive it is the prerogative of the state, representing its people, to not intentionally import them from other countries to distribute across our own.

              the nation =/= your house

              I didn’t say it is. But much like my house and property has borders, a nation has borders, and similar to my right to prevent other people who don’t own an interest in my property from crossing those borders, the nation has the right to protect its borders from people who do not have an interest in the nation.

              It’s an analogy you point out how 2 distinct and different things are similar in certain respects.

            4. ” I just wish the discourse on Islam focused on the ideas, rather than trashing the people who haven’t done anything wrong. Too often, the discussion leads to KEEP ALL THE MUSLIMS OUT or some such nonsense.”

              Oh horse shit.

              Both ideas and people matter. Ideas being entirely academic without the people who put those ideas into action. You know this, you just want to continue to dance around the reality while pretending that there is no way to address those very people other than blanket acceptance and wishful thinking.

        3. Except the ones who aren’t.

          This old schtick. Speaking generally about tendencies between groups isn’t the same thing as claiming every single individual of the group exhibits certain features. In fact I can’t think of anyone who actually argues that “ALL Muslims exhibit behaviors X, Y or Z”, so that’s a nice strawman for you to burn. I could pull the same crap with you, but that wouldn’t exactly be intellectually honest. Maybe I could try…

          “How dare you refer to those individuals as Muslims, did you ask every single adherent of Muhammed’s religion if they consider themselves ‘Muslim’? I demand constant qualifiers as a preface to your every utterance, you bigot collectivist.”

          1. “Speaking generally about tendencies between groups isn’t the same thing as claiming every single individual of the group exhibits certain features.”

            So where do you draw the line then? At some point, speaking generally about groups veers into undue collectivization of the individuals in that group.

            1. I draw the line where it’s reasonable to do so. If Ahmed commits a crime, I’m not going to advocate imprisoning his entire Mosque’s congregation. But if Ahmed’s congregation is generally supportive of Ahmed’s crime or if that congregation is unusually prone to similar crimes, I’m going to view that congregation with a skeptical eye. You seem to draw the line at the “none at all” point, despite the fact that it’s literally impossible to even use the word “Muslims” in it’s plural form without “collectivizing”.

            2. At some point, speaking generally about groups veers into undue collectivization of the individuals in that group.

              If you call yourself a Muslim, you declare your allegiance to, and belief in, what the Quran and its deity demand of you. And since this is politics, I take you at your word, just as much as when you say that you are a communist or a Nazi.

              That’s not “undue collectivization”, it is simply taking you seriously.

        4. I don’t think it’s too much to ask that populations that harbor violent nuts get it in the neck. But then, I thought the same of the Irish when the IRA was actively trying to kill off the British one bomb at a time.

      2. We can extrapolate this out to Islam. Islam is a barbaric, terrible, oppressive Ideology, completely incompatible with the values of the Enlightenment. #NotallMuslims and all that still does nothing to address the problems with that Ideology.

        1. One could say the same thing about Christianity.

          1. So say it. Does your statement refute me? What is your statement? What about Christendom is completely incompatible with the Enlightenment?

            Let’s compare Christian values with the Enlightenment. The Enlightenment was borne of Christendom.

            Now let’s compare Islamic values with the Enlightenment. Islam is anathema to the Enlightenment.

            1. You obviously didn’t even watch the video, because Nick talks about this during the interview.

            2. Chipper, I did watch the video. What part do you agree with RE: Nick’s completely ignorant attempt at discussing Christendom / European history?

              His assessment of Vatican 1? It had zero to say about women’s rights, he made that up. It did reject materialism. It did reject pure reason, and advocate reason coupled with faith, and also stated that reason and faith are not in direct conflict.

              The part about the European Identity of “Non-Turk”? Completely ignorant. That is not at all how Europe defined itself. Europe didn’t define itself. There was no “European Identity”, there were innumerable state identities, and the general identity of Christendom. Which aren’t defined as “Not-Turk” but defined as “We are Christian” and “We are ”

              Which part of Christianity do you want to discuss? And if you want to discuss it, are you prepared to actually discuss the real history, or are you going to insist on imagined dragons for you to joust at?

              1. “We are [Insert State]”

            3. Martin Luther held that Man was “depraved” by nature. Intrinsically wicked. He held that reason was “the Devil’s Whore”. The Enlightenment was a confirmation of the efficacy of reason and that Man was worthy of the pursuit of his own happiness in this world.

          2. So say it. Does your statement refute me? What is your statement? What about Christendom is completely incompatible with the Enlightenment?

            Let’s compare Christian values with the Enlightenment. The Enlightenment was borne of Christendom.

            Now let’s compare Islamic values with the Enlightenment. Islam is anathema to the Enlightenment.

          3. One could say the same thing about [noun].

            I came here to post things and take up space. Unfortunately, I don’t ever have to run out of either.

          4. Yeah, except that a Muslim can live anywhere in the Christian world, what we now call The West, and be as safe as any other person.

            But, a non-Muslim, living in say Pakistan, Egypt, say, for that matter, most of the Muslim world, is at best a second class citizen, and frequently lives on the margins and in absolute fear for their life.

            Further, it is OBVIOUS that mass Muslim immigration into Europe is NOT enhancing their societies.

            Indeed it is OBVIOUS that it is harmful to those societies, on a micro and macro level.

            Keep them out, all of them. And those that are here should either renounce their violent religion (whether they personally have ever done violence in that religions’ name) or go to some Muslim country that wants to live under that Theocratic regime.

            1. But, a non-Muslim, living in say Pakistan, Egypt, say, for that matter, most of the Muslim world, is at best a second class citizen, and frequently lives on the margins and in absolute fear for their life.

              I’m somewhere out there in the Muslim world there is a non-Muslim westerner who doesn’t fear for their life. STOP COLLECTIVIZING BRAH

              1. So, we can’t generalize AT ALL can we?

                In that case there can be no conversation.

                And the barbarians will win.

                1. Precisely. If talking about groups is some kind of fallacy in and of itself, then we might as well curl up in our own individual hiding holes and just die because reality doesn’t favor organisms that refuse to grasp at it.

                  1. You are insane.

              2. “I’m somewhere out there in the Muslim world there is a non-Muslim westerner who doesn’t fear for their life.”

                That would be Kurdistan.

            2. “Further, it is OBVIOUS that mass Muslim immigration into Europe is NOT enhancing their societies.

              Indeed it is OBVIOUS that it is harmful to those societies, on a micro and macro level.”

              No fucking shit.

              They’re refugees not immigrants. Most of them had little choice in leaving and I’m sure most of them would rather be back in their homeland. They’re obviously going to be resistant to assimilation.

              “Keep them out, all of them. And those that are here should either renounce their violent religion (whether they personally have ever done violence in that religions’ name) or go to some Muslim country that wants to live under that Theocratic regime.”

              Good luck with that.

              1. I’m guessing you’re not a woman in Germany who’s been on the receiving end of the “cultural enrichment” many of these “refugees” are contributing.

                1. Nice. Appeal to emotion.

  5. “What Islam can be, and what Islam was in the past, is a different discussion.”

    Good to know we aren’t discussing what Islam is today, but what it could be some day, if it ever reformed.

    there is no reason for Islam to be authoritarian on any level

    You haven’t even read the texts, have you?

    1. This and what FS said. No actual discussion of the text of the Koran and Hadith. And a total disregard of all history and current events. In that pretend world, we can make ourselves feel good about ourselves for not being rascist.

  6. Any rational person knows that grouping muslims into a category is ignorant. How many astute merchants are thriving in the US after all?

    But they seem to have a proclivity towards violence that others have not had for centuries.

    That said, organized religion has been and continues to be the major cause of strife the world over since the man has been around. Every single religion has their barbarism. Why are the muslims still doing it is the question?

    1. That said, organized religion has been and continues to be the major cause of strife the world over since the man has been around.

      That’s very overstated. At best, religion has often been an excuse for strife (looking at you, many, many Popes, Constantine, etc.) In fact, governments looking to create strife can do it in the name of the man who told his followers to “turn the other cheek” and who allowed the corrupt politicians and religious leaders to kill him.

      Again, in the past hundred years, most murders were committed by Communists, who are ideologically (and usually overtly) Atheist. So if you want to call Atheism a “religion”, then I may begin to agree with you.

      People are tribalists. Governments see that. When people in Government want strife, they will use any “us vs. them” argument they have, regardless of any underlying logic.

      Basically, people are evil. They can accomplish more evil in groups. They accomplish more evil still in monopolistic groups such as Government.

      1. People are tribalists. Governments see that. When people in Government want strife, they will use any “us vs. them” argument they have, regardless of any underlying logic.

        This extends well beyond humans. Barely cognizant social insects and even ‘thinking chemical reactions’ on the order slime molds are driven by ‘us vs. them’.

      2. If you readily concede that “people are tribalists”, then why the insistence on multiculturalism that stands athwart of human nature? You think that’s a recipe for success?

        1. why the insistence on multiculturalism that stands athwart of human nature? You think that’s a recipe for success?

          I don’t insist on it. I insist on non-aggression (for everyone). I tell Christians to go beyond that and “do unto others”.

          I honestly don’t know what you’re trying to tell me. Maybe I’m dense today.

  7. While the historical basis for compatibility with the West exists

    Wasn’t one of the first American wars against the muslim Barbary States? And wasn’t this fought over trade?

    there are still many challenges that face the Islamic world.

    Like dealing with extremists among your ranks. And maybe not having a theocratic government that treats women as second class citizens (and/or slaves) and kills homosexuals as an “act of compassion”.

    What we need is the Enlightenment…not Luther, but John Locke.

    The US could use a little Locke as well.

    1. Like dealing with extremists among your ranks.

      I utterly loathe this type of argument. If some Muslim terrorist commits some crime, how does some other Muslim, who has nothing at all to do with terrorism, bear any sort of responsibility or guilt for that crime? If you want to demand that “Muslims police their own” or some such, you are really arguing for a collectivization of guilt. And I’m 100% opposed to that idea.

      1. If some Muslim terrorist commits some crime, how does some other Muslim, who has nothing at all to do with terrorism, bear any sort of responsibility or guilt for that crime?

        How many state sponsors of islamic terrorism are there? And “extremist” also refers to sharia law, which is none too kind to women and gays, as I mentioned.

        1. If a terrorist act is sponsored by a government, then that government is at least partially responsible. I am referring to people like the local Imam, whom people demand that he denounce the latest terrorist attack, just because the terrorist and the Imam both happen to be Muslim. That’s wrong.

        2. Now we’re also blaming subjects for the clandestine operations of their governments.

      2. +1 chemjeff

        Did every Christian and/or white person have a moral obligation to get on their Facebook and denounce Dylan Roof’s murdering rampage in a black folk church? Does every American have a moral obligation to personally apologize each time the U.S. government kills another innocent civilian in a foreign country?

        1. Did every Christian and/or white person have a moral obligation to get on their Facebook and denounce Dylan Roof’s murdering rampage in a black folk church?

          Is “white” an ideology? Do whites commit violent crimes against blacks out of proportion to the general population? Do millions of whites openly support similar mass murders against blacks? Did you take cues from the sophists on how to make an analogy?

          1. Is “white” an ideology?

            According to the alt-right, it is.

            Do whites commit violent crimes against blacks out of proportion to the general population?

            Historically, they did.

            Do millions of whites openly support similar mass murders against blacks?

            No, but millions of whites support mass murder of Muslims. If you don’t believe me, look up the statistics of what percentage of Americans think it is ok to kill civilians in military attacks.

            1. According to the alt-right, it is.

              Wow that goalpost moved so fast I didn’t even see it go.

              Historically, they did.

              That’s two goalposts gone in a flash.

              No, but millions of whites support mass murder of Muslims. If you don’t believe me, look up the statistics of what percentage of Americans think it is ok to kill civilians in military attacks.

              Whats with you and your insistence on grossly asymmetric analogies? American=/=whites, military=/=terrorist organization, military attacks=/=mass murder of muslims. But I guess if we normalize for all those disparate categories and ignore all the ways it’s a completely different discussion and context, it’s like totally the same and stuff.

              1. I am done with this discussion, duuuude. It has become boring and pointless. There are four reasons to discuss something with someone else: to build rapport, to exchange information and learn, to entertain, or to do battle to bolster your ego. The first three reasons are not present here and the fourth is poisonous to my well-being. Your ego wins, you defeated me and drove me off. I hope you at least get some temporary joy. Later.

                1. I gave up building a rapport with you long ago. At about the same time I also gave up trying to convince you personally of anything. I’m debating you so that some undecided schlub perusing through the comments doesn’t see bad arguments win the day. I thought that was obvious.

      3. If you want to demand that “Muslims police their own” or some such, you are really arguing for a collectivization of guilt.

        This ignores or assumes no agency on the part of non-Muslims and is a symptom victim/blame mentality. That is to say, (if) we both agree that people getting gunned down, blown up, and/or run over is a problem. Me saying either you fix it or I’ll fix it doesn’t make you guilty of causing the problem.

        If we don’t agree, then you get to go full Reason, stick your fingers in your ears and scream “White Nationalism!”, “Open Borders!”, and “Libertarianism sans (your) Property Rights!”.

        1. Me saying either you fix it or I’ll fix it doesn’t make you guilty of causing the problem.

          Why do you demand that individual Muslims, who have nothing to do with terrorism, have some special obligation to “fix” terrorism in the first place? By placing special demands on them to deal with the problem, you imply that they are somehow more responsible for the problem than others.

          1. Why do you demand that individual Muslims, who have nothing to do with terrorism, have some special obligation to “fix” terrorism in the first place?

            Maybe because it’s not true that Muslim people generally have nothing to do with it. Moral and rhetorical support is something they do give in huge numbers in the Middle East. By the by, do you think it’s just an enormous coincidence that so many terrorist’s ideology springs from Islam?

            1. Moral and rhetorical support is something they do give in huge numbers in the Middle East.

              So you do favor the concept of collective guilt then. Do you realize how anti-liberty your message is? What you’re arguing is literally no different than when Bill Clinton blamed “talk radio” for the Oklahoma City bombing. After all didn’t Rush Limbaugh give “moral and rhetorical support” for anti-government activities? Does the NRA give “moral and rhetorical support” when some gun-owning nut shoots up a daycare?

              At what point are you going to argue “individuals are responsible for their own actions”?

              1. So you do favor the concept of collective guilt then.

                In the sense that there is implicit/explicit support for 1) sharia law and 2) global jihad, there is collective guilt. That said, I do not, nor do FS and mad.c. appear to, believe that anyone other than he/she who commits some violent act is directly responsible for that violent act. What was being commented on is culture in muslim theocracies. And some cultures don’t mix**.

                **I’ll preempt you by stating that this does not mean I am against muslim immigration or immigration in general.

              2. So you do favor the concept of collective guilt then

                You said that individual Muslims have nothing to do with terrorism. I responded to that by saying that’s not true because huge swathes of the population openly support the terrorists. It is precisely from that talent pool from which actual terrorists are recruited and it is from that population that terrorists get moral rhetorical support. Thus practitioners of that ideology are literally the only ones who can reform the belief system which you say is so unfairly characterized.

                55% of Jordanians have a positive view of Hezbollah

                60% of Jordanians have a positive view of Hamas

                One third of British Muslims believe anyone who leaves Islam should be killed

                84% of Egyptian Muslims support the death penalty for leaving Islam
                86% of Jordanian Muslims support the death penalty for leaving Islam
                30% of Indonesian Muslims support the death penalty for leaving Islam
                76% of Pakistanis support death the penalty for leaving Islam
                51% of Nigerian Muslims support the death penalty for leaving Islam

                80% of young Dutch Muslims see nothing wrong with Holy War against non-believers. Most verbalized support for pro-Islamic State fighters.

                With numbers like that you don’t think the Islamic world needs to get their shit together?

                1. I frankly do not care what proportion of people believe this or that, Muslim or otherwise. People are free to believe whatever they wish, no matter how much I may agree or disagree with those beliefs.

                  But that is even besides the point anyway. You want to say “Islam” is responsible for terrorism? No it isn’t. You know who’s responsible for terrorism? THE TERRORISTS. THEY, and only they, are responsible for their terrible actions. Neither a religion nor an ideology can kill people. Individual human beings do that. By blaming Islam, you are letting the terrorists off the hook. You are denying their agency and their culpability for the crimes that they commit. They are not just brainwashed morons. They are reasoning, thinking human beings who made terrible choices and deserve 100% of the blame for those choices. And by placing special burdens on Muslims to solve the terrorism problem, you are placing burdens on them that you would never tolerate for yourself.

                  I am not interested in reforming Islam, stopping Islam, fighting Islam, defeating Islam. I’m interested in stopping terrorists. Aren’t you?

                  1. People are free to believe whatever they wish, no matter how much I may agree or disagree with those beliefs.

                    Right because clearly I’m saying that we should outlaw their beliefs.

                    But that is even besides the point anyway.

                    No, you said Muslims have no responsibility to address Islamic terrorism.

                    You know who’s responsible for terrorism? THE TERRORISTS. THEY, and only they, are responsible for their terrible actions.

                    They’re guilty of pulling the trigger. The millions of people standing behind them and showering them with prayers and praise are to be sure not criminals themselves, but they sure as shit aren’t morally blameless. They have moral agency last I checked.

                    By blaming Islam, you are letting the terrorists off the hook.

                    How am I letting anyone off the hook? Did I endorse the terrorists? I condemn them. But unlike you, I also condemn the people who support them. Pretend that Islam is the religion of peace all you want.

                    And by placing special burdens on Muslims to solve the terrorism problem, you are placing burdens on them that you would never tolerate for yourself.

                    Muslims do have an obligation to solve the Islamic terrorism problem. If libertarians were committing innumerable terrorist atrocities, you’re god damn right it would be incumbent upon libertarians to end that bullshit. Who else?

              3. So you do favor the concept of collective guilt then.

                At what point are you going to argue “individuals are responsible for their own actions”?

                We cannot be responsible for your arbitrary conceptions and haphazard associations of collective guilt. Especially those that occur in direct contradiction to granted or shared or otherwise collectively (mis)understood premises.

              4. I think you are mistaking one thing for another.

                So you do favor the concept of collective guilt then. Do you realize how anti-liberty your message is? What you’re arguing is literally no different than when Bill Clinton blamed “talk radio” for the Oklahoma City bombing. After all didn’t Rush Limbaugh give “moral and rhetorical support” for anti-government activities? Does the NRA give “moral and rhetorical support” when some gun-owning nut shoots up a daycare?

                You are confusing ‘giving’ and ‘taking’.

                The Oklahoma city bomber may have taken solace in talk radio–but talk radio wasn’t giving that solace–they weren’t supporting his stances or encouraging his actions.

                Islam has special prayers for those who have given or are about to give their lives in jihad for Islam. THAT is ‘giving solace’.

                A person has no control over someone else taking solace from something they’ve done.

                But they have complete control over offering solace to someone.

    2. Wasn’t one of the first American wars against the muslim Barbary States?

      This is a poignant fact that blow-backlists tend to ignore.

      Upon the birth of the USA, Islam attacked.

      There were no troops in Riyadh. No war in Iraq. We were not supporting Israel.

      The country was an infant. We had done nothing at all to Islam.

      But there they were, Muslims, ready to kill us in our cradle.

      1. And they kidnapped millions of Europeans from the coastal areas and sold them into slavery. The enslavement of US sailors specifically, was what brought the US to the North African coast. They didn’t do it because of US foreign policy or blowback or anything other than their sense of entitlement to the non-Muslim’s bodies and property.

      2. Morocco, in their tourist marketing, likes to note that they were one of the first nations to formally recognize US independence.

        What they fail to mention is that this action was taken precisely because it meant US flagged vessels were no longer under the protection of the British Navy, and so became easy pickings for their raiders.

  8. I skipped the preceding comments. It’s a lot of shitty “ALL MUSMILS R TERRIST” collectivism, yes?

    1. There’s also a lot of vaginas getting all triggered and bitchy due to such comments.

      1. Hey, at least you can finally say you’ve made a vagina feel something.

        1. why would I care about doing that?

      2. Spoken like someone who hasn’t touched a vagina since he fell out of his mom’s.

    2. Pretty much. And John hasn’t even showed up yet.

    3. I think we’re supposed to be incredulous that this guy is trying to create an Islamic narrative conducive to Enlightenment liberalism. It’s a nice catch-22.

    4. Yup. 100% “All Muslmils R Terrist!!” all day. No one asking for someone to inspect the ideas of Islam. The laws it requires in its texts. The context in which it is taught today. Nope. Just a bunch of people using Islam as an excuse to hate on the superior Muslims with their superior ideas.

      If only we’d learn to accept Islam into our hearts, I’m absolutely certain we will find our way to that Libertarian Moment and ultimately, Salvation.

      1. IOW, you didn’t even listen to the interview.

        1. He either didn’t read or didn’t understand my comment, either.

        2. I read it. Go up thread. I even quoted back certain parts of the interview.

          1. THEY didn’t. That’s why this comment stopped them dead.

            1. They got stopped dead all up and down this page. I saw nothing but asymmetric analogies and a child-like (#NotAllChildren) proclivity towards squawking about “collectivism” every time a general inference is made from clearly visible patterns. #NotAllOpenBordersFans

        3. Nope. I listened to it. Look up thread. I even quoted back some parts I found entertaining.

    5. I skipped the preceding comments. It’s a lot of shitty “ALL MUSMILS R TERRIST” collectivism, yes?

      Have you read the Quran? As a political and social philosophy, it’s clearer than Mein Kampf or the Communist Manifesto.

      No, not all Muslims are terrorist, just like not all Nazis were KZ guards, but they are all followers of an evil and intolerant ideology, even if many of them don’t realize it.

  9. Protestant Reformation isn’t necessarily what’s needed. “What we need is the Enlightenment…not Luther, but John Locke.”

    Do we have a timeline on enlightenment? Like maybe a three month horizon or something? ‘Cause… damn.

    1. I did a little research here and apparently Islam started in the 7th century. Meanwhile the western enlightenment happened in the 18th century or thereabouts. So assuming all other things are equal and Islam is not capable of opening a fucking book or otherwise getting some kind of head start from happening to notice what everyone else in the world is doing, then I guess a conservative guess would be that we’re looking at Islamic enlightenment around the 25th century.

      1. we’re looking at Islamic enlightenment around the 25th century.

        On the plus side, they’ll probably never get to the point of unbelievable amounts of enlightenment. Never end up with so much enlightenment that they’ll be sick of all the enlightenment.

    2. “The Islamic world did liberalise ? but then came the first world war”
      http://www.spectator.co.uk/2017/02/th…..world-war/

      While the author makes some good points, he ignores the Whabbism movement that was also growing at the same time. That was Islam’s Protestant Reformation unfortunately.

    3. The only way Islam gets a John Locke is if they stop killing, threatening to kill, or otherwise suppressing all the sorts of people an Islamic Locke might read or listen to.

      So, I’d say the Islamic Enlightenment is a long, long ways away.

    4. Do we have a timeline on enlightenment?

      We do! It happened quite a while after the Reformation, and after millions died in religious wars.

      Islam following the same path of the West is a non-starter; the path that the West took is too bloody by modern standards and we’re not going to let it happen.

  10. The Muslim libertarian moment has already started with progs shutting down hookah cafes.

    1. No, they didn’t get shut down. Racial sensitivity won the day.

      Then dozens of lounge owners and hookah smokers, along with other supporters, showed up at City Council meetings to protest the mayor’s plan, calling it discrimination against businesses run by people of East African and Middle Eastern descent.

      So Murray backed off, saying he would enter talks with the owners and use the city’s Racial Equity Toolkit process to analyze the community impacts of closing the lounges.

      “Racial Equity Toolkit”. Let that one sink in for a moment.

      1. So hypothetically only Africans and middle easterners could legally own smoking cafes because feelings. That’s fair, right? What’s not to love about mass immigration from parts of the world where it’s diaspora will get special race based privileges and handouts once on our shores? I don’t know about you but I find that positively enriching.

        1. Yep, and any non-African/Middle Easterner who patronizes a hookah lounge has committed the crime of cultural appropriation.

        2. So hypothetically only Africans and middle easterners could legally own smoking cafes because feelings. That’s fair, right?

          How about the Dutch? Legal weed is an integral part of Dutch culture.

  11. “Islam was born as a very trade-friendly religion. Prophet Muhammad was a merchant himself.”

    Yes. Their long, rich history of trading in slaves is especially nifty.

    1. “Their long, rich history of trading in slaves is especially nifty.”

      They still do it. So it is not only history but also current events.

  12. “What we need is the Enlightenment…not Luther, but John Locke.”

    If we had some ham, we could have some ham and eggs if we had some eggs.
    From what I read, there is no real safe place for casual followers to land in a Muslim society.

    1. Furthermore, without Luther, there wouldn’t have been any Locke. And between Luther and Locke, millions of Europeans died in religious wars, and the rest of the world was Christianized and subjugated through colonialism and slavery. Sorry, but out of simple self-preservation, I don’t want Islam to follow the Western model.

  13. Mo was not a merchant, he was a desert pirate.

    And he created the perfect “religion” to justify his piracy.

    Islam is perfect for those that want to live by violence because it justifies doing ANYTHING to non-Muslims – because they aren’t Muslims.

    That’s what Islam is – theft, rape, and murder.

    In the Muslim tradition the Koran is the actual word of g_d as revealed thru his “prophet” (the murderous child-raping Mohammed), that these are the FINAL words mankind will receive and that mankind is to follow these last instructions to the letter.

    In other words there can be no “reformation”.

    No Muslim country is advancing spiritually, culturally, socially. There is no advancement towards Western ideals of freedom and individual rights. NONE.

    And people want to pretend that importing more and more Muslims is going to turn out good?

    Madness!

  14. Interesting that Libertarian Muslim isn’t considered an oxymoron – but Libertarian Nationalist is.

  15. When will moderates in Christianity learn from their Muslim counterparts?

  16. The problem is that you can simply go read the Korean yourself and see that it’s basically the Old Testament (already a pretty nasty work) re-written by a schizophrenic murderer.

    People who believe that 100% are not going to be peaceable, because it literally goes against their beliefs as written in their holy book.

    (This is also why I don’t trust Christians who quote from the Old Testament, they’ve missed the whole point of Christianity, which is in the NT and a break from the psychotic god of the OT)

  17. Umm… Mo was a FAILED merchant

  18. The Libertarian fire once glowed warm and lustrous here within the ponderous canyons of Reason.

    The radical egalitarianism proffered by Nick to this clever Islamic charlatan moving his mouth about individual rights and capitalism illustrates a decline of Reason so acute I am forced to wonder how the fuck this rag can remain a respected messenger for pure Libertarian thought.

    Genuinely-independent Muslim thinkers who legitimately believe in autonomous choice unfettered from belief live in fear from their brothers and sisters and to think a so-called freedom magazine is promoting a belief that would savage the constitution while instituting draconian religious protections the like never witnessed in this country.

    I sense Arab moolah filtering through the foundational cracks. Qualms of losing donation bucks doesn’t appear to unsettle the editors of this community or else the political locus has been revised to embrace European-grade postmodernist Kantian/Marxist readers as a hedge against perceived oncoming societal turmoil while filtering out the bracing hardcore liberty crowd.

    In any case, it is clear that Trump’s America-first emergence has necessitated an Islam-promoting bent to political messaging across the establishment media spectrum which bodes dark worries for free society.

    1. ” …the political locus has been revised to embrace European-grade postmodernist Kantian/Marxist readers …”

      +1

  19. I’m opposed to central planning except when it comes to electrical grids.

    And maybe – auto roads.

    And possibly a few other things.

    =========

    There are places where central planning is useful. Necessary even.

    1. Weights and measures.

  20. JeremyR|2.28.17 @ 4:37PM

    The OT corresponded to the human ecology of that era.

    Two Ecologies

    A Thermodynamic Explanation Of Politics

    1. There have been plenty of attempts in sociology and political science to come up with mathematical and biological explanations for politics. The authors of those articles should bother looking them up.

      Unfortunately, generally, while plausible, such explanations have not been very predictive and just fall into the category of “speculation” at this point.

  21. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Barbary_War

    On Jefferson’s inauguration as president in 1801, Yussif Karamanli, the Pasha (or Bashaw) of Tripoli demanded $225,000 from the new administration. (In 1800, Federal revenues totaled a little over $10 million.) Putting his long-held beliefs into practice, Jefferson refused the demand. Consequently, in May of 1801, the Pasha declared war on the United States, not through any formal written documents, but by cutting down the flagstaff in front of the U.S. Consulate. Morocco, Algiers, and Tunis soon followed their ally in Tripoli.

    In response, Jefferson sent a group of frigates to defend American interests in the Mediterranean, and informed Congress. Although Congress never voted on a formal declaration of war, they did authorize the President to instruct the commanders of armed vessels of the United States to seize all vessels and goods of the Pasha of Tripoli “and also to cause to be done all such other acts of precaution or hostility as the state of war will justify.”

    In March 1785, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams went to London to negotiate with Tripoli’s envoy, Ambassador Sidi Haji Abdrahaman (or Sidi Haji Abdul Rahman Adja). When they enquired “concerning the ground of the pretensions to make war upon nations who had done them no injury”, the ambassador replied:

    1. It was written in their Koran, that all nations which had not acknowledged the Prophet were sinners, whom it was the right and duty of the faithful to plunder and enslave; and that every mussulman who was slain in this warfare was sure to go to paradise.

  22. Islam won’t be reformed because anyone who actually tries to do it lives under the threat of death

    http://pamelageller.com/2017/0…..olar.html/

    You won’t find many people willing to do that.

  23. “There is a tradition of Islam that actually values enterprise and free trade,”

    Even communists and fascists “value enterprise and free trade”; after all, that’s what brings in money and prosperity. Unfortunately, all those shitty political ideologies create a social and political environment that destroys them.

    Islam may be a religion, but it is certainly a political ideology as well, and one that is on par with communism and fascism in its totalitarianism, if not worse.

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