I would like to do a piece on my blog, Releasing Religion, regarding mixing God & government.  And I'd like to know what opinions people have here about doing such a thing.  Some points to mention are:

Glenn Beck is well known for arguing that we have misunderstood that founding fathers & their desire to keep church & state separate.  Holding his rally on 8/28, he gathered 150.000 people to hear him talk about bringing out country "back to God".  What do you think it would do to our country to "get back to God"? 

The Tea Party has been called racist Chrisotcrats. In their recent convention, most conference sessions began with prayers.  What do you think of the Tea Party?  Do you know very little about them?  Do you know a lot?  Please share your thoughts here.

The piece will be posted on www.releasingreligion.blogspot.com









Tags: 8/28, Beck, Christocrats, Glenn, Honor, Party, Rally, Restoring, Tea

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Park - Thanks for sharing. On the news someone said one of the rally signs someone had was "God hates nags" lol. Was that you? LOL

You said:
if this is a country of equality, then why are we arguing over this? this issue isnt' with the implementation, its about the philosophy behind it all

I have been thinking about this. Whenever I would hear Neal Boortz (Libertarian) say "YOU do not have a right to healthcare" I would always think "YEAH! Damn straight!

But after hearing your point of view on this post and a previous post and talking to you a little bit, now I find myself asking myself... what would be so wrong about having health care available to all just like justice, police, firemen, and schools are available to all, as you say.

Now I am trying to figure out why I agreed with Neal so adamantly?....

Well, I have been sitting here for a least 30 minutes, staring at this, as yet, incomplete post still trying to answer this question. Why did I agree with him so adamantly?

I'll sleep on it. I'm very perplexed (I'm just really tired). Why, why, why...
I think these people like Neal Boortz get to where they are because they are dynamic personalities and they can be very convincing. It's like they cast a "charm" spell over us. I am very much not a fan of Glenn Beck or Bill O'Reilly, but I force myself to listen to them from time to time just for a different point of view. And sometimes I *almost* find myself agreeing with them.

Park is presenting a different side of the health care argument that I've never heard before either. And it's an excellent point. So let's all sleep on it and explore this further.
It's very easy to emphasize just one angle and be persuasive. If you just keep pounding away on the idea of personal responsibility (everybody should carry their own weight) and set aside extenuating circumstances, then the libertarian perspective sounds pretty good. Why shouldn't people be expected to take care of themselves? The problem is that by emphasizing just one aspect, you miss the bigger picture. It's like looking at a person's head and saying that since the nose is the furthest forward, that's all that matters, and we should value our noses more highly than any other part of our head. Of course that's silly, and so is any other worldview that obsesses on one or a few aspects of issues and ignores any others.

Like people who are obsessive about abortion--it's like nothing else matters to them, but in truth, abortion is just one little part of the big picture. People who focus on the national debt are making the same mistake; sure debt can be a problem, but are we really in too deep to dig out? The 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (commonly known as "the stimulus" or "Obama's socialist takeover of America") cost about $787 billion over ten years. That's 5.5% of 2009 GDP ($14.3 trillion). That is a lot. But to put it in perspective, the Savings & Loan bailout in 1989 was about 2.3% of GDP. And the 2009 ARRA stimulus includes $105 billion in infrastructure spending on roads, bridges, federal buildings, etc. These are things that we will enjoy the use of for decades.

You really have to look at the bigger picture to put things in perspective. I don't know anything about Boortz specifically, but libertarians aren't too keen on spending for public infrastructure because they don't like being forced to chip in thru taxation, which they often refer to as "theft". But they never seem to complain too much that they don't have to pay to drive on the interstate. The libertarian worldview is just amazingly myopic. It all seems to come down to the fact that they don't want other people controlling any of their money. Of course, they don't seem to notice that taxation and representation means that they get to share in the collective control of other people's money. They see the costs, but they ignore the benefits. And if they only ever talk about the costs, which you also pay, it sounds like they have a reasonable point of view, because you can identify as a taxpayer. But whenever anybody sounds like they're giving you a good argument, always ask yourself what they are leaving out.
Jason,

I love your perspective on things. The analogies you bring to the table really help make things much more clear to me about the way I've always felt. It will help me in dealing with my wonderful in-laws, who support the Tea Party & are very Christian. I love them, but I just don't agree with them on this piece.

The infrastructure point is an extremely good one. I can't imagine getting on the LA highways out here and having to pay tolls on each one. I mean, that would be ridiculous. That's what it's like to drive through West Virgina. :)

Great analogy about the nose. I'm going to use that one.
W. Virginia? The parts of NJ I've been through are toll infested as well.
I think tolls are literally the only way W. Virigina makes income.
I think tolls are literally the only way W. Virigina makes income.

Is this how legends are born? "In West Virginia, there's a toll under every bridge."
Don't forget Chicago.
Another reason is one one people don't think about. They think health insurance costs are just about them. Some of it is to offset the cost of those without insurance.
you probably agreed because people with views will often use the various fallacies that religions do as well. So if he makes an argument off of a false premise that you accept, such as "people should only carry their own weight" it can easily evolve into "some people don't have the right to healthcare, some people deserve better treatment than others" and "no one has the right to healthcare"~ although for the latter, I find it hard to accept just based on face value~ if that were how we felt, then why would ambulances be required to treat everyone? why wouldnt we find it acceptable to just drive away when people can't present insurance? doesnt make sense does it? i swear, it seems like conservatism is trying to turn us away from being human. Did we spend the last ten thousand years fighting and struggling, just so we can continue now when we have the power not to?
Another one of the things with healthcare is people say that "you'll have to wait!" to get treatment, but thats not really the case. what it involves is people being more invested with their doctor in receiving preventative care~ so yeah, you may have to wait a little later to get a mammogram or whatever, but you should be working with you doctor and planning these things; but emergencies won't be impacted. people will be taken on a basis of severity, just like things are done now. if you need a kidney transplant, you will get priority over a non critical appendix removal, just common sense stuff. Its stupid, you hear the pundits saying things like there will be death panels and it sounds ridiculous, but thats because it IS ridiculous. I personally don't think its unreasonable to say that an 85 year old shouldn't get the new heart, it should go to the 16 year old. I think that the 85 year old might agree, i know that i would in that instance. thats where death panel comes in, and "rationing healthcare" as if there isn't enough to go around, but the real issue is if prices were lowered to where they should be, there would be no reason to ration at all. and besides, a doctor makes all those decisions, another human being that you have a personal relationship with... I just hear a lot that doesn't make any sense and see people become afraid of what could actually change their lives for the better. sorry, i know that one was a rant
It's like they cast a "charm" spell over us. I am very much not a fan of Glenn Beck or Bill O'Reilly, but I force myself to listen to them from time to time just for a different point of view. And sometimes I *almost* find myself agreeing with them.

@ Maia - I also try occasionally. I can only take about 5 minutes of Beck (unless he starts talking about religion or the founding fathers or starts writing a lot on those retarded black boards) - then it's total eye roll and time for an instant channel change. I have to admit that Beck cracks me up with the way his body language and facial expressions communicate his complete exasperation with liberals. If it was not for that comedy, I could not listen to word one of anything he had to say so I guess you could say that for me (that is "his charm").

He keeps me listening only because I enjoy seeing him get so worked up but then I know what you mean when sometimes he says somethig and you *almost* find yourself agreeing with him. I can see how to liberals there is nothing seductive about it - to them his brain is plain out of commission and he is a nothing but a ranting lunatic. I also crack up at Colbert and Stewarts' satirical ways expressing their complete exasperation with repubs.

Now O'Reilly - basically the same thing. I find his brisk, no bullshit, no nonesense, cut to the chase, aggressive, don't give a crap about being diplomatic manner rather comedic. I can take about 15 minutes of him, occasionally.

Jason wrote:
But whenever anybody sounds like they're giving you a good argument, always ask yourself what they are leaving out.

Yeah, that's what got me into this mess in the first place (tying to find out about the things "they" are not telling me). So you could say it is good that I did not simply close my mind down and decide to no longer seek for a different perspective because if it were not for my willingnes to do that very same thing back when I was a Christian - I would NOT be on this forum today - I'd be sitting on a bench pew, sacrificing another piece of my brain at the alter at each Sunday morning service.

The process of leaving my beloved Christian faith was an extremely painful one - it took about a year and it was 30 years ago but it is something I will never forget and that pain that I suffered is why I am so passionately participating in these atheists forums at this time. God only knows (just an expression) how much grief I could have saved myself had forums such as these existed back then so I am sure that people struggling with their faith today will be able to resolve the matter more quickly in these times due to easier access to knowledge and others' perspectives. This can create a snowball or critical mass situation for the cause of atheism and atheism become an very important political influence. I hope to live to see this happen. It would be very exciting.

One more thing I wanted to add. I have had an epiphany lol. I now define the Tea Party in this way - A large group of angry frustrated Americans that have gained popularity due to their "easy answer" stance (when in fact - there are no easy answers).

Someone from this thread e-mailed me about this "easy answer" angle and that struck the deepest chord of all within me. But of course, all of the members participating on this thread have also compelled me to abandon my sympathetic leanings toward the Tea Party.

Didn't someone else on this thread compare the "easy answer" seductive component of religion to that of what is causing the successful momentum of the Tea Party? I seem to recall such a post. Who were you? I have dial-up and it would be too difficult to find that post.

I guess you still have to give them credit for exposing the social climate in this country that peoples frustrations in this country are getting to the "boiling point". When a lot of people begin to reach this stage - interesting things can begin to happen. Let's try to find the time now and again to grab some popcorn and enjoy the show. If somehow this ole world as we know it survives - this period in time will be a fascinating read in the history books or on the Kendalls or whatever the hell they will having going on in the future.

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