Another Shot From Wilson’s Bushes
Wilson’s blogging is usually thick with irony; his justice primer is no exception. Many have pointed out how unjust it is for a pastor to use a justice primer to set up his readership for acts of injustice, as Wilson did most assuredly over his attempt to deceive his readership about RC Sproul Jrs’ defrocking.
Today Wilson gives us some more interesting lessons on justice as he continues to write his Primer. He starts out with a nice big fat lie. Surprised? He lies about the nature of an entire set of public accusations, but dishonestly reducing it to the charge of “hating black people.” As Wilson knows, however, this is just one accusation within an entire orbit of accusations, and the most questionable allegation out of all of them. In fact, this is the one accusation Wilson aggressively defends himself about—for the obvious goal of obfuscation of all the other related allegations that HAVE STUCK TO THIS DAY. This is a typical rhetorical trick of his that we have pointed out about a half a dozen times. Wilson knows we would point it out once again; but it doesn’t matter to him. He just keeps beating his drums for whatever faithful following is left. And if that isn’t enough for a nice Wilsonite intro, he also pretends that “pillaging the deacons’ fund” is representative of the local criticism. Lie number two.
This is certainly a nice way to introduce a post dedicated to criticizing Pooh’s Think. Will we see any honest dealing from here? Of course not. All Wilson does from here is vaguely juice up the rhetoric about the very simple fact that I have a web site explicitly and self-consciously—and in very disciplined fashion—primarily designed and maintenanced for the purpose of exposing the ongoing deceit and harmful ideology and actions of Douglas Wilson. I just got word last night that another family from Christ Church has left due in part to the labors of many here at Pooh’s Think; each time I say “well, I think that wraps it up, its now on public record,” I get encouragement to not stop—particularly from those who have suffered from abuse at the hand of Wilson.
However, this encouragement has not been enough for me, which is why there have been weeks when I have posted on other subjects with far more frequency than Doug Wilson. Further, I have been very clear for a couple months now that I am no longer hoping to have direct conflict with Wilson nor even convince Christ Church members of anything from here. I’ve been done with this for a good amount of time now; I have now moved on in life and now that I am no longer being “spiritually abused” by him, I have come to find Wilson to be a fascinating sociological specimen. I am an academic, if you haven’t noticed, and although I am a bit of a generalist, I like analytic and scientific explanation: which is why I am particularly fascinated with those scholars creating a philosophical bridge between the arts and cognitive science. It would not be surprising at this point if I contributed to a book about Doug Wilson and Christ Church, or else author one all on my own. Given the immediate cultural context, the personality of Wilson, and the nature of the ministries surrounding him, the person of Doug Wilson is thick with gold nuggets. There have been other sociology students who have agreed with this assessment. Given my level of experiential knowledge of the situation and my personal knowledge of Doug Wilson, I am put in a very privileged place as a researching anthropologist or sociologist. But, putting aside this recent, less passionate approach to the Kirk, in the past I have tried my best to remain diligent; if I could write my own ticket, given how ‘prolific,’ public, and undeterred Wilson’s self proclaimed culture war is, I would have a nice, highly edited three page essay for you every morning. But I would keep it on a five day cycle:
On the first day, I would continue the historical narrative, the story—most likely starting some years before I moved to Moscow for the first time. On the second day, I would give the readership a news update, which would include links to Wilson’s blog, display of correspondence sent to me from the Kirk, or personal experiences I had during the day, etc. On the third day, I would analyze and expose the bad ideology and deceitful rhetoric continuing from Wilson, particularly from his daily blog routines—this would come in the form of argument and perhaps some polemics. Unfortunately, Wilson gives us a steady flow of fresh material, such as his recent applause of the Ligonier Law Suit against Frank Vance. On the fourth day, I would give a more detached sociological/psychological analysis of what is going on here in Moscow, which comprises most of my posts on Wilson these days. And on the fifth day, I would extend the finding of the first four days to an application to broader cultural situations. For example, I have done this by combining Sam Harris’ political concerns about violence generally with the frightening mode of argument from Wilson on Harris’ point of human empathy.
That would be nice, would it not? It would be my own personal master’s degree. But, as it is, I am a poor graduate student, father, husband, and home builder. So I can only occasionally engage in these sorts of things irregularly and in a good deal of unconcerned haste—which is why the more detached social analysis seems like the best way to proceed if I want to be disciplined about it at all. After all, I don’t have tithe money to fund my daily blogging marketing adventures like Doug Wilson.
So, then, what of Wilson’s criticism of Pooh’s Think? For me, it just looks like more evidence that Wilson really does not have anything to say to our discredit. Wilson does not address the public exposure here because he can’t. In order to make it look like Wilson even tried to catch me in a “lie” he has to sit in wait for months and then ambush me with a magic show. And yet, even this attempt was futile. For instance, I didn’t lie. Sheesh. Certainly I’ve lied about something over the course of the last year! Is it really that hard to find something? No, because Wilson knows that any minor errors I commit here are immediately corrected if they are pointed out. Errors are my best friend; I really enjoyed posting Leithart’s concerns on Pooh’s Think, for example. In response to a series of strong posts that I forwarded to him (they were in part about him), Leithart graciously points out what he thought were some factual errors. They were fairly minor. So no, Wilson doesn’t want to go there. This is why Wilson’s strategy is to throw up sand for many months and then once the analysis and claims are deep within cyberspace make vague allegations about them in sweeping terms. And this is what we see here precisely:
Wilson is criticizing my use of “enemy theology.” This has been a helpful technical term and it seems to be a catchy phrase. However, Wilson alleges that it is just a vague, rhetorical ploy: “they haven’t granted any specific charge.” But this is entirely false. The phrase “enemy theology” has been rooted in hundreds of specific local details and dozens of arguments. Go back to the beginning of Pooh’s Think and take a look. It got its life from my own attempt to even make sense out of Wilson’s strange existence here on the Palouse. But since Wilson’s post has nothing to do with reality—surprise—some simple reminders:
Doug Wilson was my long term pastor and friend. I was a grayfriar student in good standing. I was a writer for Credenda. After months of agony and months after I had determined that Wilson was most certainly an abusive liar that refused any accountability on any level, I started pushing certain issues to see how he would respond to me. The way he progressively responded to me, as well as how his loyal following responded to me did not just confirm my worst worries. Rather, by stirring the pot I was shown that the situation was far worse than I had even imagined. Over the last year, numerous people have contributed to Pooh’s Think and have demonstrated beyond a reasonable doubt that Doug Wilson is an abusive, social manipulator, I liar and hypocrite who dazzles his following while refusing any judicial accountability from anyone. The facts just keep added up, and they have gotten to the point that it is simply ludicrous to suggest that Wilson does not respond to Pooh’s Think in a direct and rational manner because it is filled with the slanderous ravings of a mentally insane person. If you recall, Wilson has publicly assaulted not only my character but my very sanity—a typical response to intelligent public criticism. And even here, Wilson writes an entire post about me without being willing to even be clear who and what it is he is talking about. Wilson’s rhetoric thrives in confusion and ambiguity, which is why it is difficult to point out with certainty that Wilson just lied about me in one new way today: “…early in the morning and late, late, late at night.”
Well, thankfully, I don’t blog early in the morning and late, late, late, at night—perhaps he is hoping some of his more zealous followers will sing this as a mantra during their imprecatory prayers. But it is deeply ironic, albeit fully expected, that in the midst of such a dark, slanderous, hidden, and convoluted post attacking me Wilson would piously preach about how one should deal with their public opponents (he calls them “enemies”):
…the remaining question is whether you fight in a clear-headed way like a Christian. Love them, pray for them, and always hit above the belt.
Just love this hitting above the belt Wilson. Your last post yanking censured material from Frank Turk and misquoting it in order to knowingly libel me about my honesty is perhaps another example of hitting above the belt. Your character smears, manipulative rhetoric, and underground sociological assassination tactics within your pastoral sphere is perhaps other examples we should be thankful about: you always hit above the belt. Pastor Wilson, I must say, you are really showing the world how deceptive and hypocritical a “man of God” can be. Keep it up; it is very illuminating. Keep up the good work; maybe it will even win you another article at the Ministry Watchman, Southern Poverty Law Center, and the Presbyterian Review.