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Republican Relativism Uncool, Say Blogger and Pastor

In the noteworthy philosophical juxtaposition of the week, my friend Leo Kallis discovers the real reason for Governor Dennis Daugaard's disdain for philosophy: the Governor has admitted that he is a moral relativist... or as he would have been known in ancient Greece, a sophist:

Off the top of my head, I can think of only two schools of philosophical thought that would accept "everything is relative" as true: the ancient sophists and their descendants, the postmodern deconstructionists. For whatever reason, Daugaard doesn't seem like one of the latter.

Perhaps the Governor would know that if he brushed up on his philosophy instead of condemning it and trumpeting his wisdom about philosophy without understanding the subject. The latter quality does mark him as a sophist.

Just in case I didn't make it clear earlier: not everything is relative [Leo Kallis, "Daugaard the Sophist?" The Displaced Plainsman, 2014.09.25].

Meanwhile, from another quadrant of the political galaxy, Lora Hubbel sends out a campaign e-mail with this year-old video of a Sioux City pastor breaking out the pinstripes (I would like to see Kallis in that suit!) and berating his parishioners for supporting relativist Republicans:

2 Minute Trailer: "Exposing Situational Ethics," by Pastor Cary Gordon, from Cornerstone World Outreach on Vimeo.

I'll agree with both bearded believers: there are some absolutes. One must believe in something bigger than just winning an election.


  1. Steve Sibson 2014.09.26

    "One must believe in something bigger than just winning an election."

    Doesn't that cut you out Cory?

  2. Don Coyote 2014.09.26

    If the Displaced Plainsman wishes to engage in contextomies to fallaciously make his argument then fine. But it should be noted that he himself is engaging in the very thing he accuses Daugaard of.

  3. larry kurtz 2014.09.26

    Leo is not governor of a failed state like DD is.

  4. Bill Fleming 2014.09.26

    But wait, according to Albert Einstein, everything really IS relative. Maybe that's why the physicists have pronounced philosophy a dead duc... er, I mean pheasant. S'pose Governor Dennis has been hobnobbing it with the guys at the DUSEL lab at Homestake?

  5. Roger Cornelius 2014.09.26


    You are truly a Wild Bill today.

    Funny stuff

  6. danno 2014.09.26


    Especially in Mississippi, where things are even more "relative"....

  7. larry kurtz 2014.09.26

    If you get a divorce in Lead are you still siblings?

  8. mike from iowa 2014.09.26

    Somebody had to cut out Rounds in order to have Cardboard Mike. Sibby,go 'splain your neo-marxist relativity Gohmertism to Cardboard Mike. Maybe he can appreciate it for whatever it is.

  9. Deb Geelsdottir 2014.09.26

    In my God School (seminary) philosophy class I wasn't completely satisfied with any of the schools offered. Much of the time I am a situationist. There aren't that many absolutes.

    Love God with everything you've got. Love your neighbor as yourself." (Short version.)

    As I read the Bible, that's the whole of Christianity. So there is the one absolute. How to strive for that is very fluid.

    BTW, my prof, an old school master type, went nuts with that.

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