Just to clarify any wrong impressions …

Betsy and I are not seriously working to get back to Avondale United Methodist Church.

As Betsy notes about the day I had the last phone call with Rev, Dunlap and Judy Everly, before I saw the letter that in no way reflected what we talked about, but was the “secretary’s report” of the meeting (either fire that secretary or give him a contract for the next best seller on the New York Times Fiction list), why did I bother to jump through all the hoops they put before me? They were furnishing me no incentive to do so. In fact, they had disincentivized the whole process.

They had changed the subject of the meeting without telling me. I had talked to them the whole time thinking I was working on one project, one goal, when they were putting through hoops for a goal of their own. And even though I had already done everything they had required, and was currently active in those activities, I did them all again with a team of people of their choosing. Nothing could dispute that I was as cooperative as possible.

And yet when I got the letter I found out that they had changed the target, my requirements, and removed my incentive. They had made me waste the resources of my last 24 hours.

They had done what everyone always seems to do. I come to them with a need of my own, something they are needed to help me with, and instead of helping me with my concerns, I have to talk about and take actions to address needs of their own. Oddly enough, we never get to my concerns.

Which brings me to original topic I intended to write upon. I call it “the Libertarian Dilemma”.

The core of Libertarian Ideology is persuasion vs. coercion. It is also rule of law vs. the rule of the majority, or of the mighty. It is leaving people alone, and if you do need to work together, persuading, not forcing, the cooperation. It requires listening to all sides. When one side refuses to even talk about the concerns of the other, coercion is being used.

Here the non-Libertarians have the advantage. As Rev. Dunlap so aptly demonstrated, they can lie and deceive you that they are discussing your concerns while changing the topic to one of theirs and coercing you into doing what they want, on the promise of being heard, and then flatly ignore you. They don’t have, not even pastors, any compulsion against coercing people. Pastors specifically, seem especially good at coercing people.

When you are a Libertarian you emphasize freedom, and denounce coercion. Now I understand why people have such a fierce aversion to organized religion. Too easily it becomes just one more coercive way to herd people around and control them. “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.” That isn’t what Rev, Dunlap is doing.

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