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The Libertarian Christian Podcast

Join the LCI Team each week they explore, debate, and analyze the issues that are directly relevant to the intersection of Christianity and liberty. Always thoughtful, frequently controversial, and never boring (trust us), it is our hope and prayer that The Libertarian Christian Podcast serve as a valuable resource to the Church for years to come. Episodes are released every Friday. Be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts or Stitcher to get each episode as soon as it launches!
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Now displaying: Page 1
Jan 27, 2023

In this episode, Doug Stuart talks to Alex Bernardo of the Protestant Libertarian podcast about the knowledge problem in theology and philosophy. The Protestant Libertarian Podcast explores the intersection between protestant Biblical studies and libertarian philosophy, discussing the Bible, history, culture, economics, philosophy, and current events from both protestant and libertarian perspectives.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction - About Alex Bernardo

07:34 What kind of Protestant are you?

10:20 How do you tie together being libertarian and Protestant?

12:20 Favorite topics covered

15:39 Biggest influences theologically and politically

20:51 How do you approach interpretation of Scripture? How is it authoritative?

26:22 How do we decide to apply the Old Testament?

31:28 What about the Ascension?

33:50 How do you decide what's important to get right?

45:04 Why don't you speak disfavorably of postmodernism? What is knowledge?

56:20 How woke culture leverages postmodernism and language?

59:11 Current reading list

1:07:25 Closing Remarks

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Jan 20, 2023

Dr. Michael Rectenwald is a former Marxist joining Doug Stuart to explain The Great Reset. Dr. Rectenwald is the author of twelve books, including The Great Reset and the Struggle for Liberty: Unraveling the Global Agenda (Jan. 2023), Thought Criminal (Dec. 2020); Beyond Woke (May 2020); Google Archipelago: The Digital Gulag and the Simulation of Freedom (Sept. 2019); Springtime for Snowflakes: “Social Justice” and Its Postmodern Parentage (an academic’s memoir, 2018); Nineteenth-Century British Secularism: Science, Religion and Literature (2016); Academic Writing, Real World Topics (2015, Concise Edition 2016); Global Secularisms in a Post-Secular Age (2015); Breach (Collected Poems, 2013); The Thief and Other Stories (2013); and The Eros of the Baby-Boom Eras (1991). (See the Books page.)

In this episode Dr. Rectenwald fleshes out questions explaining the connection between Marxism and woke ideology, and that connection to Klaus Schwab's Great Reset, a plan with the World Economic Forum to monopolize the world economy. The discussion highlights some key point including the seemingly innocuous nature of the gateway ideologies to Marxism - namely, social justice, anti-racism, etc. If you've been interested in understanding more about the Great Reset, listen to this episode and consider purchasing Dr. Revtenwald's book.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

01:03 How did you come to reject Marxism and embrace libertarianism?

04:00 Connection between Marxism and "Wokism"

06:03 Can exploitation explain certain kinds of oppression? Was Marx 100% wrong?

10:30 Why can't a Marxist see the state as an oppressive institution? 

12:56 Is there a kind of social justice that isn't 'woke' or Marxist?

16:11 Woke Capitalism? The Long March - the Socialist takeover of the economy.

24:43 The Great Reset: What is it? 

29:20 The coordination of propaganda shrouded under the cloak of inevitability.

34:43 How to respond to the charge the Great Reset is a conspiracy theory? 

40:43 Conspiracy Theorists echoing an anti-Semitic trope?

42:00 Are you optimistic? What's your proposed solution?

44:03 Please buy the book directly from Michael - get a signed copy

 

Resources Mentioned:

https://www.michaelrectenwald.com/

Buy directly from his bookstore here: https://www.michaelrectenwald.com/apogee-bookstore

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Jan 13, 2023

Dr. Norman Horn speaks with Stephen Kent, author of the book, “How The Force Can Fix The World." Kent's book explores the libertarian themes, and the relevance Star Wars has to Christianity. The guys then break into spoilers about the new series, Andor.

 

Main Points of Discussion

00:00    Introduction

01:35    About Stephen Kent

03:16    Christian influences on Kent (and Star Wars?)

04:56    Purpose in producing the book - political polarization and enmity

07:26    Inserting your opponents as being The Empire or The Rebellion

10:14    Chapter on humility and common values

17:20    Matthew 18 - childlike faith

22:06    The Death Star and Luke Skywalker

24:57    SPOILER ALERT!

Talking about new Star Wars productions: Andor

 

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Jan 6, 2023

In this episode, Doug Stuart speaks with Dr. Paul D. Miller about Christian nationalism. Dr. Paul D. Miller is a Professor in the Practice of International Affairs at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. See his profile here. Miller published the book, The Religion of American Greatness: What’s Wrong with Christian Nationalism. Stuart and Miller begin with the general sentiment about "love of country" and conclude with why this means we should oppose Christian nationalism. But, of course, Christian nationalism in America raises important question about racism.

Miller gives reasoned, incisive response without the typical polemics that tend to go along such a controversial topic. He helps listeners think about the difference between personal sentiment of racism, and the backdrop of racialized issues and language, without appealing to woke ideology. Was race really a motivator for electing Barak Obama? Why CN is more culturally motivated than politically motivated, and why the crossover from culture to politics is happening none-the-less.

Christians against Christian nationalism should be the sentiment shared by Bible-believing liberty-lovers. Ideas about American equivalence to Israel is simply bad doctrine. Desires to resurrect so-called "Christendom" is also based on an arguably unbiblical ideology of establishmentarianism. If you've been looking for an honest and rational conversation about Christian nationalism, then please listen to this episode and considering purchasing Miller's excellent book.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

02:28 The complexity behind the question, "do you love your country?"

03:36 Guarding against love of country becomes idolatry

05:57 Why this book now? The Religion of American Greatness: What’s Wrong with Christian Nationalism

08:10 Nationalism as a reactionary response to rapid socio-economic change

09:29 Is "our first black President" really about race?

12:15 "Sublimated" racism - racialized vs racism

15:05 Info about the book and main thesis - trilogy of Christian political theory

16:44 The belief that our nation has a specific fixed cultural identity - Anglo-protestant

18:10 Who are the major intellectuals advocating for Christian nationalism? What are their strongest arguments?

19:42 How much of this depends on the idea the Founders wanted to found a Christian nation?

20:50 Why would Christians want to defend nationalism beyond the cultural element?

21:54 The desire to resurrect "Christendom."

22:35 Invokes sexual revolution, but this isn't really about our national identity

23:18 Biblical theology of nations - kinship vs political entity

25:02 Israel is not a template for what a nation should be

26:48 Critique of Stephen Wolfe's book

27:57 Tribalism vs personal identity - what similarities qualify for the tribe?

30:10 Is it fair for the media to caricature all discussion on CN as race-baiting, or a dog whistle for white nationalism?

32:21 Effectively opposing nationalism - be a patriot (against nationalism)

33:51 Is Trump a nationalist? American greatness, not liberty

35:52 "America's Heritage" has a lot of baggage for different people - rhetorical vagueness is the tool of every politicians; weaponizing the past

37:08 Concluding thoughts

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Dec 30, 2022

In today's episode, Doug Stuart and Norman Horn are grilled by Matthew Bellis in a game of "Would You Rather ...?" From pancakes vs waffles, to Tom Woods vs Bob Murphy, to Matthew's meager attempt to ferret out Norm's and Doug's heretical tendencies, you'll find out more about these guys than you ever cared to. Enjoy our last episode of 2022 before we get back to the serious stuff in the New Year.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00    Introduction

02:24    ... be painted red or blue for the rest of your life?

03:02    ... dogs or cats?

04:09    ... pancakes or waffles?

04:43    ... triskets or saltines?

05:14    ... coffee or tea?

06:47    ... Wonder Woman or Captain Marvel?

08:25    ... lose your sight or lose you memories?

10:00    ... give up air conditioning or internet?

11:03    ... have a full time maid or a full time chef?

12:01    ... 11ft tall or 1ft tall?

13:26    ... royalty 1000 years ago or middle class Canadian today?

14:32    ... nothing but Hallmark movies or nothing but Horror movies?

16:42    ... rat or snake hiding in your room?

18:23    ... a year at war or a year in prison?

18:44    ... get rid of taxes or get rid of world hunger?

19:55    .. for your dad ... Tom Woods or Bob Murphy?

21:48    ... Joe Rogan or Dave Smith?

22:20    ... John Stossel or Dave Rubin?

23:58    ... Matt Walsh or Ben Shapiro?

25:12    ... Glenn Beck or Rush Limbaugh?

26:10    ... Saint Augustine of Hippo or Pelagius?

27:03    ... Saint Nicholas or Arius

27:56    ... SBC or PCUSA?

29:01    ... Methodist or Annabaptist

30:03    ... dinner with Al Mohler or play ping-pong with Benny Hinn

 

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Dec 23, 2022

In today's episode, Doug Stuart chats with Neil Shenvi, a PhD in Theoretical Chemistry, about his work in Christian apologetics. If you think there's a disconnect between his education and his work, he explains a bit about that in the opening to the episode, as well as the basis for new found expertise in critical theory. Shenvi's concerns about the influence of critical theory rests in the influence (and resultant damage) to orthodox Christian doctrine by ideas developed by critical theorists. He offers a history of the philosophical discipline; many ways to discern the mechanics of it, how to think through and address the moving target certain nomenclature creates, and much more.

If you know very little about the topic, or believe it's not as bad some say it is, this episode gives a great bird's eye view making connections you might not have previous thought to consider. Shenvi has a very gracious demeanor and way about speaking on this topic; he's sensitive to certain topics of valid concern (racism, abuse, etc), while recognizing the necessary distinctions and why this particular ideology is such a poison. Shenvi is apolitical in his approach. He comes at this with no agenda about politics or political theory.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

01:15 About Neil Shenvi

03:12 How Christians begin expressing wokism and the common trajectory

07:03 What is critical theory?

09:04 How culture effects economics - the connection to Marxism

11:15 How does post-modernism relate to critical theory?

14:11 The convergence of critical theory and post-modernism (and the significance of this)

16:31 Robin DeAngelo is critical race theorist??

18:07 Academics and activists

20:10 Difference between critical theory and critical race theory?

22:18 James Lindsey's connection of critical theory to neo-Marxism?

25:49 Christians going woke are "just trying to deal with the poor and oppressed"

29:55 How lived experience can be wrongly interpreted

32:48 The woke have a "double consciousness" - lived experience is only valid for those liberated from their (white) blindness.

35:32 Wokeness is internally coherent even if it's realistically incoherent

37:48 Are there any ideas that are redeemable about crt?

42:00 there are some isolated ideas that are valid truth claims

42:43 Error in identifying problems, or just a matter of solutions?

46:55 Interest convergence theory?

50:39 CRT's biggest enemy is liberalism

52:00 Shenvi's book reviews and his professional writing

54:51 Concluding thoughts

 

Resources Mentioned:

https://shenviapologetics.com

 

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Dec 16, 2022

In this episode, Doug gives us a glimpse of our sister podcast, Faith Seeking Freedom. This podcast is part of the Christians for Liberty Network and also the companion podcast to our book, Faith Seeking Freedom: Libertarian Christian Answers to Tough Questions. LCI Founder, Dr. Norman Horn, is the host of the FSF podcast, and he answers some common questions we get about the differences between libertarianism and conservativism, progressivism, and liberalism. Check it out, and tell us what you think.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00      Introduction

02:36      How libertarianism is different from conservativism

05:49      How libertarianism is different from progressivism

09:52      How libertarianism is different from liberalism

 

Resources Mentioned:

Christians for Liberty Network: christiansforliberty.net

Faith Seeking Freedom Podcast: https://libertarianchristians.com/shows/faith-seeking-freedom-podcast/

 

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Dec 9, 2022

A literal fireside chat with Doug Stuart, Norman Horn, Jacob Winograd, and Matthew "I'm on fire!" Bellis. How the guys were influenced by popular personalities. How Jacob was converted to the Mises Caucus from "the left". Is democracy really all that bad? What is nationalism? Listen in as the guys let loose and catch fire... literally!

Audio Production by Podsworth Media.

Dec 2, 2022

Standing in for Doug Stuart is LCI's founder, Dr. Norman Horn. With him today is professor David Rose from the University of Missouri. Dave Rose is a Professor of Economics at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. He has served as the Department Director of Graduate Studies and as the Department Chair. He received his Ph.D. in Economics in 1987 from the University of Virginia.

His primary areas of research interest are behavioral economics, political economy, and organization theory. He has published scholarly articles in a wide range of areas. His work has been funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the HFL Foundation, the Earhart Foundation, and the John R. Templeton Foundation. He is currently in his second term on the U.S. Civil Rights Commission. In 2008 he received the St. Louis Business Journal’s Economic Educator of the year award.

You might have heard of ESGs (environmental social governance) from various climate change advocates. David Rose helps us understand what ESGs are and their relationship to stakeholder theory. Rose then contrasts the practice of ESGs (including their historical precedence) with business ethics illustrating for us some inherent problems. Rose explains the social benefits of maximizing profit, why this is a net good for society, and it proves to be a boon philanthropically. Another problem Rose highlights is in business ethics itself. Not only are few university students taking this course, but people who should not be in the position are the ones teaching the subject. (No surprise!)

This episode is a great introduction to the topic of environmental social governance and why we should pay attention to these practices.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

01:45 Environmental Social Governance - what is it?

04:43 History of "corporate responsibility" (stakeholder's theory) compared to ESG - how did we get here?

08:33 The evolution of business ethics and current problems

13:41 Is a business firm a moral agent? The personification problem; The evolutionary theory of firms

19:10 Why ESG proves to be a profound problem on the social effect of business firms

20:45 The effect of ESGs on pension funds

24:25 Why does the firm need to be philanthropic when people can do that on their own? (demonizing profit)

30:19 The "decades of greed" correlate with the most philanthropic time in American history; How can we understand that ESG will harm this?

35:17 There's no virtue in spending someone else's money

37:48 Profit is a signal you've served someone else well

39:27 Practical advice to build awareness for ESG and problems in society

41:48 Concluding thoughts

 

Resources Mentioned:

Common Sense Society https://www.commonsensesociety.org

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Nov 25, 2022

Former Libertarian Party Vice-Presidential candidate, Spike Cohen joins Doug Stuart for a discussion about politics, faith, and libertarian activism. Cohen, raised as a Messianic Jew, recounts some of his personal journey in and out of faith. Cohen explains how he became a libertarian and some significant moments in America's recent history where the left and right were very close to unifying on common cause. He then describes how he's come to understand the single most important issue that affects all others is the monopolization of the monetary system through the Federal Reserve. Responsibility for nearly ever grievance against societal problems and government can be laid squarely at the feet at the central bankers. 

Spike Cohen goes on to address some key issues with the broader freedom movement, including the ongoing divide between pragmatists and idealists. He describes this as "our own duopoly" explaining that both sides need each other and maintaining the divide is handicapping our ultimate goal. He's organized a non-profit called You are the Power, dedicated to grassroots municipal level activism with an effective approach. Cohen highlights one story about Pastor Moses and the city of Gastonia, NC that shutdown his homeless shelter, apparently, to secure tax dollars to finance government homeless programs. Finally, he answers the toughest question about how can possibly have a perfect relationship with his wife, Tasha.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00    Introduction

01:33    How Spike Cohen became a libertarian

04:16    Personal journey with faith and libertarianism

09:49    The brief moments where the left and right were unified in their prophetic voice against empire

16:29    The Federal Reserve and control of the money system as the single most important topic

22:20    How big is your libertarian tent?

25:58    Libertarian messaging post-pandemic

31:00    Advice to libertarians embarrassing themselves on social media

34:01    “You are the Power” - Grassroots activism

38:46    Pastor Moses in Gastonia, NC - Homeless shelter shutdown

42:14    How do we get people interested in activism?

45:55    How do you have a perfect relationship with your wife?

48:32    Concluding thoughts

 

Resources Mentioned:

Spike Cohen: You Are the Power https://www.spikecohen.com/

 

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Nov 18, 2022

In this episode, Doug Stuart is joined by Dick Clark, co-author of Faith Seeking Freedom, to discuss questions related to a Christian's employment or service to the state.Clark is an attorney who is employed by the Nebraska Legislature. He describes himself as an anarcho-capitalist, or radical libertarian, and so not a "beltway libertarian." Clark takes you through his thought process for what sorts of positions, jobs, offices, that someone can do in a particularly Christian way - that is, aligned with our calling as Christians. He also explains why some jobs should be considered off limits for the Christian.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00    Introduction

01:46    What does Dick Clark do in government?

05:25    What kind of libertarian are you?

07:55    What is the difference between governance and government (the state)?

12:15    Is local government closer to obtaining the consent of the governed?

15:26    What system do we have and is it good? bad?

19:23    How does our calling as Christians ground how we participate in government?

22:24    Is it Christian to repeal welfare programs?

28:20    Would you work for a rival politician?

31:28    Can Christians participate in law enforcement?

42:53    Concluding Thoughts

 

Audio Production by Podsworth Media - https://podsworth.com

Nov 15, 2022

We're celebrating the 300th episode of the Libertarian Christian Podcast! This episode was streamed live on Friday, November 11th, 2022. To commemorate this milestone, we announced a big new project: The Christians for Liberty Network (CFLN). This is a network of podcasts that share our mission of educating people about the intersection of faith and politics. Joining CFLN are Mike Maharrey of the Godarchy podcast, Jacob Winograd of the Biblical Anarchy (Daniel 3) podcast, and we've also launched a brand new podcast called the Reformed Libertarians podcast, with Kerry Baldwin and her co-host, Gregory Baus, who is new to LCI. In addition, LCI has re-launched Good News, Bad News, with Matthew Bellis, and the Faith Seeking Freedom podcast. We had a lot of fun with this announcement, as we also invited Doc Dixon back on as our special guest. And all the hosts took some friendly jabs at Doug Stuart, the host of our flagship show. Lots of roasting and good times were had, so enjoy the fun now if you didn't catch the livestream!

Audio Production by Podsworth Media.

Nov 4, 2022

Join Doug as he guest appears on Danial Winograd's Daniel 3 Biblical Anarchy Podcast to talk about how to read the Bible as a libertarian. Not only does Doug get into what he and LCI are up to, Doug and Jacob carry on an in-depth conversation about how many Christian libertarians misread the Bible, and how we can treat the Bible as authoritative without thinking of it like we do the constitution. Doug explains why Jesus wasn't a libertarian and how we can live in a world where the state keeps asking more from its citizens.

Audio Production by Podsworth Media.

Oct 28, 2022

Deceiving others for a living - oh wait! That's politicians. Doug is on a comic kick! In this episode, comic magician Doc Dixon unwittingly exposes Doug's affinity for dark humor. Just kidding. This fun and lively interview takes us behind the scenes with the guy who fooled Penn and Teller (link below). And Doc even comedically corrects the idea that magic is deceiving others.

Doc Dixon chats with Doug Stuart about being a (Reformed) Christian libertarian and comic magician. Dixon has been featured on Penn & Tell's Fool Us, and successfully fooled them. Like many of us, Dixon came to libertarianism during the Ron Paul Revolution and the libertarian view of economics and monetary policy. Dixon talks about the natural compatibility between Christianity and libertarianism.

They shift topics to discuss Dixon's career choice as a magician. Dixon demystifies professional magic by pointing out that it's a learned skill like anything else. How do magicians decide to share their secrets? (And how much is already "out there" thanks to the Internet). What's the community of magicians like? Do they get together to learn from each other? and much more! Of course, the performance is personal and we get to hear how his personality comes out in his work.

Do some Christians believe magic deceiving others and so off limits for us? Dixon has a perfect response for this - "there's an unintended hubris there." Not even Las Vegas, in Dixon's view, are the magic shows really superstitious or occult-like. (Though that's not to say everything in Vegas is that innocent.) Dixon and Stuart take a few (more than a few) friendly jabs at one another throughout. So sit back and enjoy this more lighthearted episode of the Libertarian Christian Podcast.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

02:36 How does Doc Dixon identify? Comedian or Magician

04:38 Doc Dixon's Christian background and how he came to faith

06:10 What led you to Ron Paul?

09:13 Do you believe Christianity and libertarianism is naturally compatible

11:42 Do you incorporate libertarianism into you shows?

16:25 How do you become a magician?

20:08 Magician cocktail parties?

23:16 Are Las Vegas magicians dabbling in the occult in their performances?

27:25 Workshopping magic with other magicians

30:35 Is incorporating humor a part of who you are?

34:26 Dark humor?

37:12 People in other fields you admire?

42:48 Magic over Zoom? How does that experience work?

45:18 Concluding thoughts, Libertarianmagician.com?

 

Resources Mentioned:

Dox Dixon's website: https://docdixon.com

Libertarianmagician.com Forthcoming

Magician Doc Dixon FOOLS Penn & Teller on Penn&Teller: Fool Us: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaDnY5q_mxg

Oct 21, 2022

In this episode, Doug Stuart chats with Lou Perez, speaking as a comedian, about his new book, That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore: On the Death and Rebirth of Comedy. Perez offers a "behind-the-scenes" of the creative journey for his new book, as well as experiences in the life of professional comedy - especially in today's highly charged and political climate.

Lou Perez was the Head Writer and Producer of the Webby Award-winning comedy channel, We the Internet TV. During his tenure at WTI, he made the kind of comedy that gets you put on lists and your words in the Wall Street Journal: "How I Became a 'Far-Right Radical.'" In addition to producing sketch comedy, stand-up, and opinion writing, he's also host The Lou Perez Podcast.

Perez details some of the back story to his book. He remarks about how his publisher gave him complete creative freedom to "write the book you want." Perez saw this is a unique opportunity to write about things important to him and the problems he saw brewing about community. He also commented about his experience in 2020 and 2021 when several big names in comedy passed away and the effect that had on him.

Don't miss all this and more in our latest episode.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

03:25 Perez's intrigue with the connection between anarchism and Christianity

05:54 What was the purpose of writing That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore

09:35 Creative, Editing, and Publication process

14:25 The mutual respect and community among fellow comedians.

17:26 What's it like to "bomb" a show?

20:40 What's going wrong with comedy today?

23:46 At what point do you old back from? (Dark humor)

32:51 Is Donald Trump funny?

34:45 Do your kids understand your humor?

36:53 What other things have you done besides stand up?

39:11 The fight you had on Twitter

42:30 Concluding Remarks

 

Resources Mentioned:

Lou's website: https://www.thelouperez.com/

Lou's Wallstreet Journal Article: https://www.wsj.com/articles/how-i-became-a-far-right-radical-11609370135

Buy the Book! https://www.amazon.com/dp/1637582455

Oct 14, 2022

In this episode, Doug Stuart was invited by Aaron Harris onto the Decentralized Revolution Podcast. Doug and Aaron spoke in depth about a number of topics relevant to libertarianism, Christianity, and speaking to the left about issues of concern to them.

How do we present libertarianism to our leftist friends? They're concerned with things that are easy to write off, but to what end should write them off, and are we missing an opportunity? Stuart and Harris dive into some interesting topics including covid, love of neighbor, social sins (social justice), the Marxist tendency to weaponize people and ideas that actually need serious consideration, the destruction of the family, democracy, and so much more.

 

Main Points of Discussion

00:00 Introduction

05:55 On Covid restrictions from a Christian perspective

15:50 Supporting social justice while opposing the left's solutions

24:26 Define social justice

29:42 How do we talk about real solutions to real social problems?

37:46 Democracy as an impulse to control

41:50 How do we open the eyes of our leftist friends?

47:44 The destruction of the family

52:23 Why is the left disconnected from the systemic injustice of central banking and monetary policy?

53:45 What is the aversion to learning economics?

59:33 How are the different libertarian factions responding to issues of social justice?

1:05:51 What are good resources for understanding and evaluating social justice?

1:10:06 Fascination with Jordan Peterson and his non-theological analysis of Scripture

1:16:54 Closing

 

Resources Mentioned

Is Social Justice Compatible with Christianity? https://libertarianchristians.com/2022/07/01/social-justice-christian-libertarianism/

What About Social Justice? https://libertarianchristians.com/2021/07/20/episode-232/

Critical Race Theory with Phil Magness https://libertarianchristians.com/2022/02/16/critical-race-theory-phil-magness/

Book Review: John McWhorter's Woke Racism https://libertarianchristians.com/2022/03/02/book-review-john-mcwhorters-woke-racism/

Ep 294: Awake, Not Woke: Noelle Mering Helps You Respond to Progressive Ideology https://libertarianchristians.com/2022/09/30/episode-294/

Oct 7, 2022

In this episode, Doug talks to Bonnie Kristian about her new book titled, Untrustworthy: The Knowledge Crisis Breaking Our Brains, Polluting Our Politics, and Corrupting Christian Community. She is concerned with the unhealthy skepticism corrupting culture. Bonnie Kristian (MA, Bethel Seminary) is a seasoned journalist who writes on foreign policy, religion, criminal justice, urbanism, civil liberties, electoral politics, and more. Her column, "The Lesser Kingdom," appears in print and online at Christianity Today, and she is the author of A Flexible Faith: Rethinking What It Means to Follow Jesus Today. Her work has also been featured in other outlets, including The Week, USA Today, CNN, Politico, and Time. She lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with her husband and twin sons.

Bonnie Kristian believes there is a crisis impacting the church that we are only just now becoming aware of. What is it? Not so much a "misinformation" problem as it is a combination of overwhelming information and few skills for processing through it. The constant bombardment of information is a relatively new phenomenon in human history. And it doesn't begin with the advent of the Internet, but with the advent of the television. For most of human history, information has been passed down actively through oral and written mediums. Since the television, it became something visual and passive.

Kristian first noticed the problem when interviewing pastors about their concerns impacting the church. Pastors noted a discipleship problem wherein people were only exposed to preaching for one to two hours a week, verses the near constant news and commentary bombarding airwaves during the rest of the week. But it wasn't simply the passive receipt of information, but also a change in habits and behavior including unhealthy skepticism corrupting culture. Kristian notes specific characteristics that are particularly troubling including, time use/management, the mixed quality of available information, the inability to critically assess and evaluate that information, and also, the manner in which media and the news industry produced their content. People began trusting media less, but consuming it more.

This shift away from trusting news sources comes from what Kristian believes is a myth. Namely, the idea the corporate media is consciously and maliciously lying to the audience to further a subversive agenda. Kristian, a journalist herself, raises the point that journalists are still trained to avoid writing to support political agendas and parties. (Though she doesn't deny this happens in some cases either). She believes are fair critiques to be made of journalism today, and she addresses those in her book. However, the main driver of news and commentary seems to rest in click bate. How do you get people to click on your link? Kristian points out the old model of advertising-financed news sources doesn't work anymore. But people are willing to pay for their news either. So in some sense, our own behavior of clicking on the most provocative titles, rather than search for and evaluating trustworthy content.

Another contributing factor to this unhealthy skepticism is the "death of expertise." Kristian borrows this phrase from author Tom Nichols who points out a problem that expertise is closely tied to an ideal. Its the notion there is an ideal that has "died" and so expertise with it. While we have plenty of examples of misuse of expertise, Kristian wants to emphasize the alternative is untenable. That is, that being completely self-sufficient in our own knowledge of expertise is not possible. When purchase good or services, we're looking for the best quality. That requires expertise. When we drive across a bridge, we expect it won't collapse. That requires expertise. Kristian laments that subject-matter experts have a bad habit of not staying in their lane. But that problem also results from people not recognizing the lane they ought to be in.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

02:04 Why is unhealthy skepticism corrupting culture?

06:19 Why should Christians be concerned with tribalism, misinformation, conspiracy theories, etc.

11:12 What characteristics are particularly troubling?

14:02 How does our online activity affect our offline behavior?

19:03 Why the shift away from trusting media

27:43 Is click-bait contributing to the problem?

30:42 What the death of expertise & democratized knowledge?

36:09 How do non experts navigate the information minefield?

39:59 Why do we love conspiracy theories?

47:42 Concluding thoughts

 

Resources Mentioned:

http://bakerpublishinggroup.com/books/untrustworthy/411490

https://www.bonniekristian.com/

Sep 30, 2022

How can Christians love their neighbors (especially members of family and church) who are falling into the progressive ideology of so-called wokism? Noelle Mering helps you respond to progressive ideology in her new book, Awake, Not Woke. Noelle Mering is a Fellow at Washington DC based think tank the Ethics and Public Policy Center where she co-directs the Theology of Home Project. She is an editor for Theology of Home, co-author of the Theology of Home book series, and the author of Awake, Not Woke: A Christian Response to the Cult of Progressive Ideology. She studied philosophy and theatre at Westmont College in California and did graduate work in philosophy at the Franciscan University of Steubenville. Noelle and her husband live in Southern California with their six children.

Mering joins Doug Stuart to discuss her work in navigating the intricacies of and foundations for the social implications of woke / progressive ideology. They discuss the characteristics of the woke movement, what it means to be woke, the role of language and why the pronoun issue is so central to change. Mering also explains some of the more philosophical foundations including Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel's influence on Karl Marx, and why it cannot be denied that wokism is a cultural twist on Marxism (ie. Cultural Marxism). Mering also explains why this isn't movement isn't actually new, but has been hidden in plain sight through a generational lag. The apparent ubiquity of woke ideology because the fruit of seeds planted decades ago.

Mering also offers quite a bit of helpful perspective when interacting with well-intentioned people falling for this ideology vs the "militant true believers" of wokism, as well as the fact this really is, at its core, a deeper spiritual battle concerning our religious beliefs, meta narratives that inform our lives and provide meaning, and why capitulation is no longer an option. Mering brings some clarity of terms like "whiteness" and "white supremacy" and that these things have very little to do with skin color.

If you've had questions about these ideas, this is a great episode which parses out the very Christian idea of love of neighbor and walking along the suffering, while not giving into the destructive ideologies that are attacking our society at its very roots.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

01:50 What does it mean to be “woke?”

03:08 What the characteristics of the woke movement?

05:52 The role of language and power dynamics in the woke movement

09:50 More than a culture war: Attack on truth and meaning

14:20 What are the philosophical origins of the woke movement?

16:17 How do we parse out working out knowledge from the danger of the philosophical foundations?

19:24 Are popular Marxists/Socialists not phased by mortality under communism because it’s “just progress?”

20:55 How does Hegel influence Karl Marx?

24:25 Generational lag and the ubiquity of the seeds of woke ideology

29:22 The difference between well-intentioned people and the militant true believers: how Christianity has fallen victim.

35:26 Tolerance is thrown out the window; it’s about division

39:08 Whiteness; white supremacy - doesn’t have to do with skin color

42:08 Is there a vantage point that “intersectionality” does provide?

47:23 Beyond the sexual revolution in the woke movement and “funneling” children into sexuality; “innocence perpetuate hierarchy.”

52:11 Is there hope in fighting against this?

53:38 Closing


Resources Mentioned:

https://www.noellemering.com/

https://theologyofhome.com/

https://www.amazon.com/Awake-Not-Woke-Christian-Progressive/dp/1505118425/

Sep 23, 2022

In this episode, Doug Stuart interviews former public school teacher, Angela Harders. Harders is author of the book, "Tales of a Toxic Teacher: Exposing the Cycles of Abuse Within Our Schools". Harders discusses her dreams and intentions when she first began teaching, and how quickly those dreams were squelched by the public school system. Many teachers like her share similar experiences, and Harders is calling out the public education, not as "broken" but as operating as it's designed.

People who become teachers usually do so because they envision a better world for kids through their education. But reality soon rears its head "within the first 5 minutes" of starting a job as a teacher. Harders explains how the public education system churns out traumatized kids and pass them through to be "society's problems." Not only is the system abusive, but the impact of the abuse cultivates kids who become abusive themselves. Harders, a public school teacher for 12 years, even describes how the zeros she gave one continually absent student were mysteriously changed to 60% (just passing) without her knowledge or consent.

Harders rebuffs the tired criticism that public education is "broken." It's not, she says, it operates as expected. Which is to say that it's intended to create submissive, compliant, factory-worker-type followers, ready for employment and trained to never question assigned authority. The complaints, however, that teachers are not given adequate supplies or leeway to be a creative teacher is all true. She had to get creative with her field trips so that students could make some tangible connection to otherwise foreign ideas that even we might take for granted. For example, she describes taking her students to a baseball game so they could understand the assigned reading which involved baseball. Hardships for students abound, but so also do hardships for teachers. As a Spanish teacher, one student asked her why he should care about learning Spanish when he was expected to die by the time he was 18.

The public education system is also rife with structural problems, says Harder. The compulsory aspect coupled with the cultural tendency to think of school as glorified babysitting is traumatic. We've all heard the stories of the kids who cry for the parents on the first day (first week, really) of school. Being separated from their parents, at this age, is not normal, and shouldn't be normalized. And yet, it is. Harders challenges parents about the education paradigm by noting that the state usually spends about $15k per student. Would you pay $15k for an education experience like this? No, of course not. But Harders says, the cost is even higher than that. That cost being, the unravelling of the social structure designed for raising the next generation: the family.

Harders, a divorce from an abusive marriage, also discovered the hallmarks of abusive relationships are all found within the public school system, and that system often creates what is known as a trauma bond. Where the abused ardently defends their abuser and excuses the abuse. So Harders left the public school system and now promotes unschooling, or what she calls Peaceful Worldschooling. She emphasizes the need to de-school, which means to take active steps to undo the damage done by the public education system. Peaceful worldschooling fits hand in glove with concepts like peaceful or gentle parenting, self-directed or interest-based learning, and using real life as a guiding "curriculum" to ignite the interests and passions of children. Indeed, making manifest the dream she and most teachers have going into this career field.

Listen to all this and more right here.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

03:12 Tales of a Toxic Teacher by Angela Harders

04:47 How quickly did you come to realize were a toxic teacher?

09:22 Public education is not broken

10:34 How did you overcome the design of public education?

12:15 Hardships of students; hardships of teachers

18:03 Structural problems built into the system

23:52 Connections to abuse

28:25 Leave-school, De-school, Un-school (Peaceful Worldschool)

34:16 State education compliance

40:46 Ahhh! Won't my kid just play video games all day?!

44:10 Concluding Thoughts

 

Resources Mentioned:

https://peacefulworldschoolers.com/

https://www.facebook.com/PeacefulWorldSchoolers

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCG0XFHxKs6DSDHdQluUNgqg

https://www.amazon.com/Tales-Toxic-Teacher-Exposing-Schools/dp/1733428550

 

Audio Production by Podsworth Media.

Sep 16, 2022

In this episode, Kerry Baldwin guest hosts and interviews Melissa Broudo. Broudo is the co-founder and co-director of the Sharmus Outlaw Advocacy and Rights (SOAR) Institute. She has been part of the sex-worker-rights and harm-reduction movements since the late 1990s, co-founding SOAR to further policy, advocacy, and capacity-building efforts that support the rights of sex workers and survivors of human trafficking.

Can Christians support decriminalizing prostitution?

Our knee-jerk response may be an automatic, "no, of course not!". Yet, many (not all) reasons favoring decriminalizing prostitution are towards ends that Christians do desire, namely, mitigating human trafficking, focusing and improving civil governance on actual acts of aggression, and making it easy to leave the profession when someone wants to. Broudo highlights some key distinctions of terms including the differences between sex work, prostitution, and trafficking, as well as the important distinction between decriminalization and legalization.

Many Christian organizations seeking to rescue victims of sex trafficking are enticed by something called the Nordic Model - where only the demand side of the sex trade criminalized. Meaning, only the purchase of sex legally prohibited, not the sale of it. Broudo touches on a number of problems stemming from actions taken by law enforcement in the name of "rescue." Other problems include government violations of personal data, encryption, freedom of Internet platforms, and the like that we discuss.

Baldwin and Broudo also touch on concepts such as bodily autonomy and agency and even how our disagreements on abortion might be set aside on our more common ground related to the concerns raised about women and sex more generally. Portions of our interview were cut out for the sake of time, but included information about the successes of decriminalization in New Zealand and (formerly) in Rhode Island.

Is there a connection between stigma of prostitution and purity culture? Baldwin and Broudo discuss the manner in which the state (both judicial and law enforcement) handle rape cases for women (prostitutes or not) the feminist mentality that all women are essentially victims, and finally the connection to some beliefs held by Evangelical purity culture types.

Rape is the one violent crime in the United States where a judge will consider whether a woman "invited" the violence against her. Law enforcement has historically ignored crimes against prostitutes using the acronym NHI to indicate "no humans involved." Radical feminists, who oppose decriminalization or legalization, view all sex work as exploitative and disregard the possibility a woman would consciously and voluntarily do this kind of work as a profession.

Christian teaching emphasizes that we not confuse or complicate our speech - that we let our ‘yes’ simply mean ‘yes’, and our ‘no’ mean ‘no’. (Matt 5:37) But are young girls and women taught how to say 'no' and is that 'no' honored by our culture?

We close with a brief discussion on economics and why the Nordic model fails on that front. If you've had questions about issue and have wanted an honest response from a Christian perspective, you'll find this interview both informative and challenging. We also address some tough questions raised by thoughtful Christians against decriminalization.

Disclaimer: As you can probably tell from the title, the following episode contains themes of a sexual nature. The Libertarian Christian Institute advocates and endorses a Christian sexual ethic, namely that sexual intimacy is a gift from God, to be enjoyed only within the bounds of heterosexual marriage. Our guest does not share this same view. However, this is an opportunity to discuss topics relevant to Christian libertarianism, that are also topics weighing heavy on minds of many Christians, to include sex trafficking, sexual abuse, and how our society and government treats women overall. As a consequence, this discussion may not suitable for everyone.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00     Disclaimer

02:23     Why should Christians care about decriminalizing sex work?

05:09     Definitions of terms: sex work, trafficking, prostitution

08:05     Why is it important to understand these distinctions?

10:15     Decriminalization vs legalization: what is the difference

13:47     EARN IT Act & SESTA/FOSTA

19:11     Do we know how many women/girls are trafficked vs how many voluntarily participate?

23:43     Legal-rights element from a libertarian perspective - self-ownership, non-aggression, bodily autonomy

32:49     Problems with the Nordic model

45:40     Tough questions from conservative Christians

1:02:07  Stigma: by the state, feminism, and purity culture (No humans involved)

1:19:47  Economics: why is it illegal to sell what a woman can give away for free?

1:29:30  Concluding thoughts

 

Resources Mentioned

https://decriminalizesex.work/

https://decriminalizesex.work/why-decriminalization/

Case against the Nordic Model (criminalize demand only) https://decriminalizesex.work/equality-model/

Scandinavian Human Rights Lawyers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J4j897YLVac

Contact Melissa at melissa@dswork.org

Sep 9, 2022

Jack Lloyd, a libertarian voluntaryist who's been promoting the liberty message for over 15 years, speaks about his new book, The Definitive Guide to Libertarian Voluntaryism. He provides an introductory explanation to this and other terms including the anarcho-distinctives: anarcho-capitalism, anarcho-communism/socialism, and why he prefers the term libertarian voluntaryism. Like many libertarians, Lloyd grounds his views in the libertarian principles of self-ownership and non-aggression, but seeks to add an additional layer in the voluntaryist element, namely, answering the question of how we make manifest consent and account for what he calls ethical apartheid.

Lloyd describes a more psychological understanding of how we got to this point with the state and civil governance. He identifies public schooling as a primary source of real, legitimate trauma in the lives of Americans, which results in very real problems in our decision making processes as we become adults. This underlying problem, Lloyd believes, explains why it usually takes a psychological shock to "wake people up" to the reality of what is happening with government and society today. Lloyd insists that we can't be "lukewarm" in our messaging; it's either the hot and energizing or cool and refreshing messaging that motives people to rethink things and take action toward different goals.

In addition to these foundational principles, Lloyd touches on some other topics important to libertarians: animal rights, environmentalism, and children's rights. While many of us have emotional attachments to our pets and other animals for any given number of reasons, Lloyd explains how an ethical system concerning human justice cannot meaningful translate to one upholding a category of animal rights. Certainly, this isn't to say that animals should be treated poorly, but that it doesn't fit into a framework of justice in consistent way. More broadly, problems arising from environmental concerns are best handled in terms of specifying particular property rights, rather than painting in broad strokes.

Lloyd also mentions children's rights. As a former juvenile defense attorney and government school teacher, Lloyd has a passion for children and the trauma, however unwittingly, they're put through as children and the impact that has on their adulthood. He's also sober-minded in approaching the relationship between parent's and children's rights, being careful to adhere consistently with the libertarian principles of self-ownership, non-aggression, and taking into account their developing capacity to meaningful consent. This includes regarding children as self-owners in their own right, not chattel property, but that their parents have the highest claim of guardianship, not the state.

Finally, Lloyd doesn't want to leave people hanging with the answer to "how do we get there?" How do we achieve a voluntaryist form of civil governance? He briefly explains his idea of not-for-profit government, and taxation is not the proper way to fund it.

 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

01:22 What is Libertarian Voluntaryism?

06:44 What are the foundational axioms of Libertarian Voluntarism?

10:36 How do we maximize the reach of our liberty message?

14:36 How radical do we have to be in our messaging as libertarians?

19:28 What about animal rights and the NAP?

25:04 Can a libertarian voluntarist be an environmentalist? If so, how?

29:36 Do we owe a duty of non-aggression to other humans yet to be born?

33:38 What about the children?

38:34 What is the not-for-profit government model?

41:12 Concluding Thoughts

 

Resources Mentioned:

- volcomic.com
- thepholosopher.com (Jack's wife's site)
- The Definitive Guide to Libertarian Voluntaryism

Sep 2, 2022
Scott Horton, director of the Libertarian Institute and editorial director of Antiwar.com, joins Dr. Norman Horn to discuss war and the U.S Government's failed foreign interventionism. They discuss several key current events, including ongoing tensions between Israel and Palestine, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and whether China is truly poised to be the next world power.
 
Horton illuminates the history behind the recent violence in the Gaza Strip that killed 44 people, including 15 children, and injuring 311. The history of the Israel-Palestine conflict is muddled with intentionally confusing narratives since the State of Israel was established in 1947. Horton makes clear that this involved a violent cleansing of about 750,000 Palestinians to maintain a 80/20 Israeli political majority. Palestine has been under Israeli control since 1967. Horton also references 2005 where then Prime Minister Ariel Sharon disengaged the Gaza Strip, but did so to prevent any further discussions of a two-state solution for Israel and Palestine.
 
Dr. Horn draws out the connection with Horton about how US foreign aid has contributed to the destruction of nations, both in Palestine and across the world in numerous conflicts, including the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and South Asia. Horton brings into focus the reality that Israel really keeps picking fights and then gets the US involved to do the dirty work. Israel's PR campaign in America involves continuing to persuade American evangelicals that God wants them to support poor Israel.
 
Let's not forget China! Many have wondered if the Communist Party in China is in a position to become the next world power. Scott Horton says no! He explains China's own military position and how it's ill-equipped to fulfill the monumental task of becoming a dominating global power militarily. Horton explains how America was only in position to become a global power after World War II due to our economic wealth. Other nations in the world had been pummeled (comparatively) by the war.
 
While America may have had some greater moral high ground at the end of WWII, they certainly exhausted it in the past several decades, turning it into a moral hazard. The US Government also had to paint perpetually new narratives to sell its foreign interventionism to the American people. They milked the post-WWII victory for all they could while simultaneously becoming the very monster they said they were fighting: global authoritarianism.
 
You can only "keep the peace" if you ignore all the violence.
- Scott Horton
 
Listen to this episode especially if you haven't been in the loop on foreign affairs. It is an eye-opening episode that should leave you embracing an end to all entangling alliances, as founders like George Washington insisted.
 
 

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction

03:04 About the Libertarian Institute

05:14 Israeli bombing of Gaza Strip

14:24 Why foreign aid destroys nations

21:50 The history of the US Govt continually switching sides in the Middle East

27:09 Russian invasion of Ukraine and who really provoked it

30:20 Why were their no negotiations for peace?

36:56 What should we do about the war hawks?

41:05 Stopping the flow of aid and diplomatic support to Israel

45:50 Is China the next world power?

1:00:50 How the state drives wedges between peaceful people

1:06:45 Closing comments
 
 

Resources Mentioned:

Libertarian Institute

Anti-war Radio

Antiwar.com

ScottHorton.org

Scott's Books:

Aug 26, 2022

Libertarian Christian Ben Lewis joins Doug Stuart to discuss a Christian view of Bitcoin and monetary policy. Lewis explains some fundamentals of Bitcoin technology and properties and characteristics of real money and how our fiat currency system not only fails us in a practical sense, but also in a moral sense. Bitcoin is a decentralized technology with a fixed supply, both very important to maintain both the value and prevent monopolization. It uses open source software which is a proven way of building trustworthy source code.

Like gold (and precious metals) Bitcoin has the properties and characteristics of real money: scarcity, verifiability, transportability, durability, and fungibility. Lewis points out that Bitcoin does these things better than gold. Lewis also explains how goods become money, a process from being collectibles, to stores of value, to a medium of exchange and unit of account.

Doug and Ben draw out moral implications of using fiat money versus real money, discussing how decentralized currencies are fundamental to Christian ethics. Lewis appeals to Scripture to make his case using passages like Leviticus 19:36 and Proverbs 11:1. He points out that inflation (debasement of currency) was a problem in the Roman empire and these passages are specifically referencing the value of mediums of exchange used through the ancient world.

What's the time horizon for implementation of Bitcoin as a medium of exchange? It's hard to say, says Lewis, but gives several examples of Christians can use Bitcoin right now to support international Christian ministries. If you're new to Bitcoin or want compelling Christian reasons for adopting it, then please listen to our interview, Honest Scales and Balances: Ben Lewis and the Christian View of Bitcoin.

Main Points of Discussion:

00:00 Introduction
01:28 What is Bitcoin?
03:57 Can you trust the code?
09:20 When does Bitcoin become money?
16:50 Money as a means of choosing what we value
19:35 Petrodollar as an international tool of manipulation
20:59 Why should Christians care about monetary policy and Christian life?
29:30 How long will it take for Bitcoin to replace fiat currency?
34:00 Real world funding of Christian ministries - Afghanistan
36:00 Where and when can you find Ben Lewis?
37:24 Closing thoughts - honest scales and balances

Resources Mentioned:

Find Ben Lewis on his new blog, lewisb.me

Impoverished Afghan women are receiving emergency aid in crypto as the Taliban limits cash withdrawals and millions go hungry by Joshua Zitser, Business Insider

Thank God for Bitcoin: The Creation, Corruption and Redemption of Money by Jimmy Song, et al

Ep 225: Thank God for Bitcoin, with Jimmy Song

Ep 242: A Conversation with Jimmy Song

Aug 19, 2022

Robby Soave is senior editor at Reason Magazine, where he writes about free speech, education and tech policy, criminal justice reform, and cancel culture, among other subjects. He's the author of Panic Attack: Young Radicals in the Age of Trump, and Tech Panic: Why We Shouldn't Fear Facebook and the Future.

Robby and Doug discuss Big Tech censorship, the best way for libertarians to deal with it, whether or not libertarians should be just as concerned with Big Tech and other corporate hegemons as with government, and more.

Audio Production by Podsworth Media.

Aug 12, 2022

Jacob Daniel Winograd of the "Daniel 3 Biblical Anarchy Podcast" joins us to discuss his transition from Bernie Sanders leftism to Austro/Anarcho-libertarianism, including his approach to interpreting Romans 13 in light of Romans 12.

Audio Production by Podsworth Media.

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