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Matthew Scully

What do you think of this fellow:
      http://www.matthewscully.com/      see the about,  the reviews and the featured articles

Speechwriter for Bush
Largely in agreement with Al Gore
Not particularly religious

regards JakobA
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He's a self righteous prig. Just the perfect speech writer for G W Bush.
<<<Largely in agreement with Al Gore>>>

The guy cares about the environment.  Yet he works for someone who is helping to rape the environment.

This guy works against America in return for money and power.
Do please explain how you have come to the conclusion he 'works against America'.
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1.  Here we just had two one-line declarations without explanation.

Agree with Patrick's response. How is he working against America?  I always wanted a good definition.  ( "Land of the free; home of the brave.)  He wants more freedom for the animals and that Americans should bravely stand up for animal rights.  That's as American as apple pie.

2. Oh, my goodness; he's not Jewish.  

I was led to believe by some things I probably read in P&R threads that the White House was full of Jews (except for it being full of moral majority Christians)

3.  "He's a self righteous prig."

Let's look at (admittedly) a small sample of his writings.

The following is from http://ctlibrary.com/16917
Scully, a vegetarian, Christian, and conservative, serves as senior speechwriter for President Bush.
Christians tend to think of it as a modern, secular cause that's antithetical to their own, more traditional beliefs. But it's not. In my book, I try to remind readers of the very venerable and beautiful tradition in Christianity that calls upon us to respect animals as fellow creatures, and to view them as a part of creation, bearing the mark of their maker.

Another reason is the belief that people who care about animals tend to do so at the expense of their concern for human beings. I think that's an entirely false choice. For instance, you can avoid eating meat, or you can give your business to small, more humane farms without affecting your treatment of other people.

"Certainly, a sort of industrial use of creatures, so that geese are fed in such a way as to produce as large a liver as possible, or hens live so packed together that they become just caricatures of birds, this degrading of living creatures to a commodity seems to me in fact to contradict the relationship of mutuality that comes across in the Bible."
From http://www.matthewscully.com/factory_farm_meat.htm


The following definitions of self righteousness are from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/self-righteous
(a) confident of one's own righteousness, esp. when smugly moralistic and intolerant of the opinions and behavior of others
(b) Piously sure of one's own righteousness; moralistic.
(c) Exhibiting pious self-assurance
(d) excessively or hypocritically pious

I think we can eliminate (a) and (d), because I don't think those quotes show Scully as being smugly moralistic, or excessively or hypocritically pious.

That leaves (b) and (c). So maybe he is piously sure of his own righteousness or maybe he is exhibiting pious self-assurance.

I don't think what Scully said above qualifies as (b) or (c), perhaps because I'm somewhat pious but in a different religion.

This brings up something I've been wondering about for quite a while.  I suppose to an atheist anything sympathetic to the notion of religiosity or religious morals is relatively pious as seen by the atheist.  Therefore, to an atheist any person of religious faith expressing his religious viewpoint as it affects the world is automatically self-righteous or holier-than-thou.

Unfortunately, "self-righteous" has a denigrating connotation.

What do you think? Is it (a), (b), (c), (d) or something else?


Perhaps you have a point there. I do find it hard to accept the underlying religiosity as a justification for views that can be put logically and rationally. It's more a matter of 'tone' than anything else. Having read a little of his stuff I get the religious feeling percolating into his words. Perhaps it's just me. I don't mind straight religious writing as it's not pretending to be anything other than that. But his style grates with me. Thus my epithet.
What a self-righteous goober.  

He sure has a problem with Hef - judging by his looks, he couldn't get one of Hef's girls to give him the time of day, much less anything else.  Do I detect an undercurrent of jealousy? ;)

I'm with patrickab - this guy has a tone that grates on me.  As Bugs Bunny used to say: "What an ultra-maroon (moron)".
Patrick, Robyn,

"this guy has a tone that grates on me"

I'm always interested as to how other people see things and I'm trying to understand your viewpoints better.

I can understand the religious aspect expressed in the second quote below, but what about the tone and content of the first quote?   Or, would you generally agree, if not for the  phrase "pretentious blather."

Thank you.

<start of quote from http://www.matthewscully.com/playboy_lagacy.htm >
Pornography, Hef still assures us, is an antidote to social and personal troubles rather than an obvious source of them, and his own softer brand of the stuff is in any case so innocuous as to have no harmful social consequences whatever. It is not license, he tells us in a typical bit of pretentious blather, but repression that "twists the nature of sexuality. What causes all the sickness, the perversion, the rape, is a repressive society " a society that can't be open in a loving and positive way." Likewise, Playboy and all it brought were "not just for the guys. The major beneficiaries were women."
Enough to say that police investigators, in the sex-crimes units that have expanded roughly in proportion to mass-market "adult material," rarely conclude that the rapist or child predator lacked for pornographic inspiration before committing the crime. As to those "major beneficiaries" of porn, you won't find too many women these days who think that the world is better because of Playboy or the smug, selfish ethic it has always purveyed.
<end of quote>

<start of next quote from same link >
But as to the public legacy of Hugh Hefner, he should have no illusions. All of us have our share of faults and sins to account for. But the lowest of vices and "strangest secret of hell," as G.K. Chesterton called it, is the desire to pervert others, to coax and corrupt them and drag them down with you. And any man who at the age of 80 has that to answer for is by no stretch the luckiest cat on the planet.
<end of quote>
<<<Do please explain how you have come to the conclusion he 'works against America'.>>>

The question is "What do you think of this fellow".  It's clearly an opinion question.

For many of us, it seems clear that Bush is doing great damage to America.  A speech writer simply facilitates that agenda.
No, it is not just "pretentious blather" it is far worse than that. I stand by my original epithet. Def. a) applies in this case and Skully talks self-righteously about Hefner's desire to pervert others. Do me a favour. Hefner has never perverted, through Playboy, anyone. It's a load of tripe which some people spend good money on but to suggest that it perverts people is ridiculous. Scores of women have made money out of Playboy and with few exceptions they have never complained about it.

Skully is the one who is attempting to pervert people's sense of judgement. That's the 'tone' I despise. And that's why he was liked by Bush and why so much of America loves Bush - it's his pseudo religious spoutings that are so 'American' and alien to me.
Thank you
Well, Mr. Scully (and others who adopt a similar tone) seems to believe that (a) he invented morality; (b) that it is incumbent upon him to impose his morality on others, whether they like it or not; and (c) that politics is the perfect vehicle to impose his morality on others.  

Imposition of a particular morality on an unwilling audience was one of the reasons that the Pilgrims leaving England and coming to America - if any country ought to be tolerant of diverse religious/moral beliefs it ought to be us, and it's a shame that people like Scully and Bush believe otherwise.
That the Pilgrims LEFT England and CAME to America - my bad :)
Thank you Robyn
Why are you thanking each person who comments?

I just wanted to add to the bit about the Pilgrims... they left their home in order to find a place where there existed freedom from persecution (real persecution, such as getting the skin flayed off of your body).  A bit of speechwriting and some blathering and posturing is not in the same league.

> Matthew Scully - What do you think of this fellow:

Dunno, sounds familiar


< Matthew Scully served until August 2004 as special assistant to the president and deputy director of presidential speechwriting.

OK, beginning to get it, it is some guy with no independence who cannot hold a job. Is that it?

> He is the author of Dominion: The Power of Man, The Suffering of Animals, and the Call to Mercy (St. Martin's Press), named by The Atlantic Monthly as one of the ten best non-fiction works of 200

Title seems like content should be or could be ok.
Reference to prior job makes it just too suspect, I'll have to wait & see about review here from others.

Or - I agree with Wiki.
What's Wiki say?

> Largely in agreement with Al Gore

Bummer. Once he advertised self as founder of internet, "Mr Internet" all credibility was lost. I felt better about him when he admitted to be too wooden a speaker, not among greatest in oratorial performances. A little human perhaps, willing to admit to and accept having what some would think of as faults or flaws. He was more acceptable then when he had no issue to latch

> Not particularly religious

Don't care. Even sounds like good reference. Given prior work schedule though, probably part ot the group that worshipped the god to kill dems Iraqi heathens

Most speechwriters I find (my IMO) to be too supportive, too ignorant, too dumb, and too much marketeering, nearly everything I don't like.

But I do not recall names, where I could pit one against other
something about that picture, what don't I remember. This isn't they guy who put up a webpage that had all the women claim he was the nicest looking person in the government, is he? No, I thing that on had less hair, right?

er, has this been edited?

I am initially siding with Bob, as usual, against the righteous pack, but I am losing context more so than they claim.

> How is he working against America?

IMO, self-explanatory. An 'america' is what more than environment, or quoting above "land of free" - and imo 'land' corresponds well with environmet.

Rape is not just a four-letter word. Maybe a gazillion years ago it has something to do with those sensual organs that are to be blasphemed. But throught neraly everyone;s life here, at least the adult part, rape is said to be a violent act, not a consentual or even senaul act, just violent. Ergo, raping environment is working against america. I'd say care not so to pick on bob because bob is bob. But that's me

>> he's not Jewish.  
> I was led to believe by some things I probably read in P&R threads that the White House was full of Jews (except for it being full of moral majority Christians)

I lost context. I do not recall there being references to jews. Maybe owned by jews, but many are not just catholic, but specif righteous catholic, no generic christian need apply, with their god|preacher Wolfowitz.

whatever. Full of sympathy I would hear. Saying anything full of jews is generally the talkshaft of the extreme radicals, mostly far right but also left can apply. More of type of language from those trying to start some nazi organization, or pure race organization, or whatever. Don't forget that the jews also own all of the banks and the media outlets, printed news and televised alike, and they thus manipulate all of us. They don't own hollywood though, do they?

> Let's look at (admittedly) a small sample of his writings

Good - I'll trust, preferring to not time-out to read or myself until I hear from others

INitial sample: my review is that it is all sugar, no substance. Like a Presidential writer or whatever, no change, if that is all I'll let my copy gather dust before I touch it. I've no copy of the copy. Seems that as christian, he'd sell better writing books of nice christian stories for christians

>  following definitions of self righteousness are from
> I think we can eliminate (a) and (d), because

And I don't understand, all apply in my view. Could it be just more covert than overt? Or if not, something like that? I not referring to person, but to comments/quotes here to date

patrickab> for views that can be put logically and rationally. It's more a matter of 'tone' than anything else

I thought I'd disagree but you got me a better word: "tone". Very schmoozy his tone.

> I get the religious feeling percolating

I probably agree. I disagree with 'religious" since it is a very christian phenomenon, they've rather cornered the market, where you won't see the likes of that anywhere else, at least not anywhere I've been. Just browse some store and check the shelf layout. Or, is that the section his book is found it - the section for christians who'd prefer to not read their bible?

> Perhaps it's just me. I don't mind straight religious writing as it's not pretending to be anything other than that

Exactly. Not necessarily bad, but not individual, more to be nice to be nice, to act nice to act nice, or something - schmooze.

Try this, about someone who greeted you yesterday:

"You look nice today"

Then greeted you today:

"You look nice today"

Then greets you tomorrow with a

"You look nice today"

Sorry, but I bore easily, and I beging to hear that I've been so ugly te rest of my life:

"You look nice today, for a change"

The sugar coated skully quotes I consider of even less value than I do those greetings calling me ugly.

robyncoffey > "What an ultra-maroon (moron)".


WaterStreet > always interested as to how other people see things

-and we love you for that

Question: From the quotations so far, do you think that this autho demonstrates caring about you you yourself really: "see things"?

I am completely lost by Hef references. Or most all. Maybe I need to re-read all.

 patrickab >No, it is not just "pretentious blather" it is far worse than that.

Yes it is "pretentious blather", and yes worse.
But as said, I am not referring to all author writings, just the snippets herein.
I remember now the name:
That is a class of books, for 'christians' that has generally nothing to do with any biblical material in and of itself.
That is what the blather reminds me of, of some ofthose kinds of authors, of

robyncoffey > Mr. Scully (and others who adopt a similar tone) seems to believe that

I disagree with that. Lacking evidence here, but it is the fear that correlates to the skulduggery in progress

> Imposition of a particular morality on an unwilling audience was one of the reasons that the Pilgrims leaving England

I used to say that, may need a reference but I thought last review had them coming originally from mainland, such as Dutch, while they debarked from port of England. Not that it matters much beyond trivial pursuit and brag rights

> it's a shame that people _________-believe otherwise.

That I'll agree with, preferring that slogans be abided by - by all, not just the everybody else.

> my bad :)

disagree. It is POV. I began to disagree more earlier until I recognize timeing. Example could be Statue of Liberty, what'd Pilgrims thingk of that?  Think on that more selvesish than needing to answer to others

DanRollins > A bit of speechwriting and some blathering and posturing is not in the same league.

Hear here!
Not mentioning even the travails of travelling the seas at the time, disease etc, compared to one who may just hop a convenient plane, dining on own before and after flight, not bothering with the free handouts of sustenance from a low-life stewardess, while pinching her butt once her back is turned.
{extracts w/o comment}


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by Donna Leon
Respectable Venetians hardly notice the murder of a transvestite prostitute until the body is identified as the staid director of the Banca di Verona. Commissario of police Guido Brunetti follows a trail through tawdry underworld alleys, down sparkling thoroughfares, and straight into the unwelcoming homes of Venice's most powerful citizens. When.
Revisiting, tried this one:

Featured Articles
A Sunless Hell

My take on that article is that is is of person reporting, like a newspaper reporter. And good, not real condescending, as some of the above comments may anticipate.
JakobAAuthor Commented:
Thank to all.

And that is why this question.

There are so many angles on this guy. Fair bet for any of us that what we first see of him fits some of our ideals and some of our hates both. On first seeing him it is chance whether we first notice a hate or an ideal. And after that whatever else we see of him is filtered through the color glasses we chose a that point. First impressions ;-))

But no ending it yet. Review please conribution of self & others above. How about it ?

regards JakobA
JakobAAuthor Commented:
A bit more to sunbow and waterstreet for closer examination.

regards JakobA
JakobA - Thanks for the points - Patrick
Thank you
> to sunbow

Thanks, I'd about forgotten this and am out cleaning up four old notifs. Down now to 728-4 of those apples.

> it is chance whether we first notice a hate or an ideal.
> Review please conribution of self & others above.

Any caring to pursue might try that here:

Democratic Ethics
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