ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN

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ORIGINS: UNIVERSE, LIFE, HUMANKIND, AND DARWIN

We debate origins of the Universe, life, Earth, humans, religion, atheism, using common sense, evolution, cosmology, geology, archaeology, and other sciences, to repel biblical creationism and other religious beliefs.

Location: Oxford University, England
Members: 4108
Latest Activity: 9 hours ago

The portrait is Charles Darwin, age 31, in 1840

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Discussion Forum

Why Does Prince George Have Brown Eyes?

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Patricia 10 hours ago. 7 Replies

Evolution and consciousness

Started by Rick Springfield. Last reply by Susan Stanko 20 hours ago. 4 Replies

If the probability of evolution is zero the sun will not shine

Started by Rick Springfield. Last reply by Dorian Moises Mattar on Sunday. 2 Replies

Intelligent But Makes an Exception for Religion

Started by Brian Edward Croner. Last reply by Rick Springfield on Sunday. 63 Replies

Scientists Say Friends Share More DNA

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by John Jubinsky on Thursday. 7 Replies

THE ORIGINS OF US ALL—BY DNA GENETIC ANALYSIS

Started by Dr. Terence Meaden. Last reply by John Jubinsky Jul 11. 42 Replies

The Intelligentsia and Skills

Started by Brian Edward Croner. Last reply by Luara Jul 1. 65 Replies

Skulls show mixed traits

Started by Patricia. Last reply by John Jubinsky Jun 24. 3 Replies

Is Stonehenge a giant, prehistoric, musical instrument?

Started by Sentient Biped. Last reply by Sentient Biped Jun 19. 6 Replies

Origins of violence among humans

Started by Sentient Biped. Last reply by king Jun 17. 3 Replies

Herpes Infected Humans Before They Were Human

Started by Sentient Biped. Last reply by Joan Denoo Jun 15. 13 Replies

what is everything suspended in?

Started by Shawn louden. Last reply by Tom Sarbeck Jun 8. 25 Replies

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Comment by Joan Denoo on September 18, 2013 at 1:04pm

I talked with women in 32 nations and the people who provide them social services looking for differences and similarities to USA style of governance. I asked seven questions regarding family structure, education, health care, child care, elder care, income security, and family violence. 

The Scandinavian countries stood out as providing safety nets for women and their children. It has one of the highest standards of living in the world. To do this, there is a socialistic shield with life-long education, cradle to grave health care, child care often linked with elder care, income security and a low incidence rate of family violence.

After these basic needs are met, capitalism takes over and they have robust  enterprise. In 2006 industry contributed about 28% of the annual national income and agriculture about 1%. Sweden's   chief exports are machinery, motor vehicles, paper goods, pulp and wood, iron and steel products, and chemicals.

According to Wikipedia, currently, "Sweden has a two-step progressive tax scale with a municipal income tax of about 30% and an additional high-income state tax of 20–25% when a salary exceeds roughly 320,000 SEK per year. Payroll taxes amount to 32%. In addition, a national VAT of 25% is added to many things bought by private citizens, with the exception of food (12% VAT), transportation, and books (6% VAT). Certain items are subject to additional taxes, e.g. electricity, petrol/diesel and alcoholic beverages."

Gini index measures the extent to which the distribution of income or consumption expenditure among individuals or households within an economy deviates from a perfectly equal distribution. 

USA Gini, 47.7 high deviation, 39th 2009. United States Census Bureau. September 12, 2012. Retrieved January 23, 2013. 


Sweden Gini, 24.4, low deviation, Eurostat Data Explorer. Retrieved 13 August 2013.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_income_equality

To me, the question is what is good for males and wealth building vs what is good for females, children, elderly, and disabled?

Comment by Drew Carpenter on September 18, 2013 at 12:07pm

I agree that Keynesian theory has worked better for us. I'm not sure that Friedman's policies should be thrown on the scrap heap, but the way they have been interpreted by conservatives has devastated the middle class. The older I get the more I believe that most answers lie somewhere in the middle. That feeling is reinforced by my view that both parties are failing the middle class by governing through extremist ideologies. It's a truism that swing voters decide every election. The problem with that truism it that we only get to decide from candidates that have been chosen, increasingly, from the left and right wings. 

Comment by Christopher Lowe on September 18, 2013 at 11:49am

When you look at it objectively it is the Keynseyan (sp?) liberals who have demonstrated a better handle on the economy than than the fiscal conservatives. They have benefited and sustained a much larger swathe of society. This is because they plan in a proactive way rather than reactive. Their outlook is investing into the future rather than investing in the next day's Wall Street Journal's headline.

Reaganomics, the conservative's attempt at long range planning has proven to be an unmitigated disaster. While benefitting a relatively small sector of society it has shredded what used to be the backbone of the american economic engine. 

Americans are cascading downward in regards to the social markers by which countries are measured. "American Exceptionalism"is a joke, unless you consider heavy handed military might to be the keystone of a country's well-being.

While Republican's seem to be content in building an Oligarchy it is through the right wing Christian multitudes that they seek a cynical grab for power. It is blatant pandering to these Christian so called "values" that manipulates them into seemingly voting against their own interests.

It seems as though Americans have a choice: Banana Republic or awesome Pinnacle of Civilization. They have a potential to go either way.

Just saying...

Comment by Drew Carpenter on September 18, 2013 at 12:49am

Chad, I think of myself the same way: a social liberal but largely a fiscal conservative. Neither party is serving my needs on social or political policies. I agree with Roy that the Republican party has been hijacked by the religious right.

This idea of captialism stemming from Christianity is also new to me. I've never thought about it in that way. I don't think that any of the socio-economc models work very well in their purest forms. Captialism has some obvious advantages, like rewarding hard work, talent, and vision. Socialism is, I think, more altruistic. A hybrid model likely stands the most chance of success. In this country, people are scared witless of the term socialism. But most of those people embrace some of the socialist programs that we have, like a public school system and social security. But they don't think of it as socialist. As for pure captialism, I've think we have seen too many times what the results can be. We don't need to regulate less, as so many people are calling for. We need to regulate better--less complicated and more effective legislation.

Izzi, I love that Vidal quote. I hadn't heard it before.

Joseph, I'm with you on the failure of trickle down. It's just a justification for putting more money in the hands of the wealth.

Comment by Izzi Ferreel on September 17, 2013 at 7:26pm

Hi, I'm a newbie here.

I think most, if not all, people need to be in a herd; a group where we can tell each other our way of thinking is the best. Our god is the best etc.

I recently read Free Thought and Official Propaganda by Bertrand Russell. He said he saw a close link between Capitalism and Christianity. It's such a new idea for me that I don't have an opinion, yet.

I don't vote. I'm with Gore Vidal, he said that the Republicans and the Democrats are two wings of the Business Party.

Comment by Joseph P on September 17, 2013 at 5:29pm

Trickle-down Economics doesn't work, either.  Demand-side is the way to grow an economy.

Comment by Roy on September 17, 2013 at 4:56pm

I was all Republican too for about 40 years or more.  Last election I voted all Democratic.  Too much religion in the Republicans these days.

Comment by Chad Kreutzer on September 17, 2013 at 4:55pm
I like to say I'm fiscally conservative and socially liberal. I'm sympathetic to the Libertarian Party but I'm like you with the Green Party. Also, some of their positions are like classical communism--they sound good on paper but don't work in the real world.
Comment by Joseph P on September 17, 2013 at 4:43pm

Same here, Chad, with the Supreme Court nominees.  Even if I was center of the road (which I'm not) on economic issues, the psycho, hard-right turn that the Republican party has made on social issues would make that more important than the economic issues, right now.  Is that pretty much the case, for you?

For transparency sake, let me say that I'm definitely left.  The only reason I vote Democrat is because the Green Party doesn't stand a chance in hell, and I'm in a swing state.  I'm just trying to interpret your position here.

Comment by Chad Kreutzer on September 17, 2013 at 2:39pm

I've been registered Republican most of my life, but as the Religious Right has gained more and more influence in the party, I've been pretty much driven out. (I even voted for Obama both times, mainly cause of potential Supreme Court appointments) It seems to me that the GOP has forgotten the meaning of "Big Tent" and as such, I would not be surprised that they'll Tea-party themselves into irrelevance as more and more rational people leave for either the Libertarian Party, the Democrats, or something else that we haven't heard much about yet.

 

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