From John Ray's shorter notes

18 October, 2002

What should we think of political moderates?

An interesting email from Ed Ziegs:

"I hope that one day you might consider including "moderates" in your ongoing thesis. Moderates to me are like "tits on a boar hog". They are there but timidly go about their busisness of making friends on both sides and betraying both sides and just getting in the way. I detest moderates. They refuse take a stand on anything. They tell you, "There are two things I never talk about with friends and relations and they are politics and religion." Imagine, two of the most important issues in life and they won't discuss them except with strangers and I would bet they don't even then. Everything is a grey area to them. Name the great moderates in history. Neville Chamberlain is the first that comes to mind. It does however, take a great deal to find them because they never accomplish anything. I don't think that God likes moderates either -- Read Revelation 3:15 and 16"

The Revelations reference is pretty vivid:

"I know thy works that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth"

Ed might also have added another scriptural reference:

He that is not with me is against me: And he that gathereth not with me scattereth" (Luke 11:23).

I understand Ed's feelings but wonder if moderates might not be the price we pay for our good old Anglo-Saxon tradition of seeing compromise as being the best solution to many problems. Most of the troubles in the world seem to me to exist precisely because most people in the world do NOT have the maturity to compromise. They all just want to win. But where you have winners you also have losers and so resentments can go on forever. Northern Ireland would seem to be a case in point. If only they were less Celtic and more Anglo-Saxon there .....

And what a difference it would make if the Palestinians were prepared to compromise! Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak offered them a huge compromise a little while ago but Arafat turned it down flat. So now the Palestinians just exist. You couldn't call it life under the PA. More fools them. They must live in a totally unreal world if they think the Israelis will just go away one day. I would not like to have the problem of dealing with such numbskulls as the Palestinians appear to be. If the Israelis bombed the Palestinian population centres massively every time they bombed the Israelis, that would not only be just ("An eye for an eye ....) but it might also be the only thing that would get through their thick skulls.

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