Politics, Economics, and Religion

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Politics, Economics, and Religion

Religion has so many connections to political and economic beliefs, there needs to be a place to identify linkages, problems, goals, options, action plans and evaluation criteria.  

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Latest Activity: on Wednesday

What is the purpose of life?

An eternal question, what is the purpose of life?, occupied philosophers’ thoughts throughout history. Stone pictographs reveal even primitive peoples reflected on this query. Each one has the capacity to define his or her personal thinking about politics, economics and religion.

Discussion Forum

Capitalism's Boom and Bust

Started by Joan Denoo on Wednesday. 0 Replies

For the past 40 years, we have seen the erosion of safety nets for small business and wage workers. Income Gap between wealthy and poor grows, exponentially now.…Continue

Tags: wealth, poverty, bubble, WinCo, Walmart

It's Finally Official - Pope Francis Demotes Highest-Ranking US Cardinal Over LGBT Issues (Daily Kos)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Idaho Spud on Monday. 23 Replies

It's been in the news. Now it has been confirmed. As of this past weekend, Raymond Leo Burke, America's highest-ranking cardinal at the Vatican, was officially removed from the Vatican's Supreme Court, and demoted to chaplain of the Knights of…Continue

Tags: cardinal, Raymond Leo Burke, LGBT, homosexuality, Pope Francis

The Obama Opposition (Charles M. Blow, NY Times)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Bertold Brautigan Nov 11. 8 Replies

The president came to Washington thinking he could change Washington, make it better, unite it and the nation. He was wrong. As he ascended, the tone of political discourse descended, as much because of who he was as what he did. When Obama…Continue

Tags: John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, opposition, president, Barack Obama

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Comment by Daniel W on December 4, 2012 at 11:16am

I've been reading "The Great Influenza".  By "reading" I mean listening to the audiobooks version.  The book rambles a lot, and some parts are tedious, but some relevance here.  It's interesting to learn about the bloodletting - that's the comment that prompted me here.  More than that, the politics that led to the greatest, most lethal, most frightening epidemic in modern times.  Woodrow Wilson led the US into WWI.  Because of that, he mobilized (Ie, drafted all males from late teens to late 30s) into the army.  Because of that, training camps were packed way beyond capacity.  The govt issued orders that no one could speak out against the war effort.  Under Wilson, freedom of speech in the US was done away with.  

When hints started about the epidemic's rapidity and lethality - often healthy people were dead the same day they became sick, sometimes 2 or 3 days, the govt and press issued only optimistic statements that the epidemic had peaked.  For the war effort, they had a massive parade in Philadelphia, with thousands of citizens all packed together coughing and infecting one another, resulting in an upsurge of deaths.  Ignorance+politics.  Meanwhile the #s of military dead at camps,  increased rapidly.  The troops were packed into train cars and ships, coughing on each other, and transferred to bases around the country, often needing to be carried by stretcher to the camp hospitals.  Newspapers, fearful of govt censorship, could not print words like "plague" and "epidemic".  Citizens could be arrested for speaking in ways that looked critical of the government or that might "frighten the public". 

As a result, around 50 million people died.  About 500million were infected.  The epidemic disproportionately hit the young and elderly.  The US govt and US military had a big role in the fast spread of the disease, although it also spread in Europe as a result of the war The disease was called Spanish Influenza,  probably because Spain wasn't censoring the press, while infected Germany, Britain, US and  France had media blackouts. 

A bit peripheral to some of the discussion,  but relevant to the group topic.  Not much on religion in that.  Prayer didn't help.

Comment by James Kz on December 4, 2012 at 2:28am

And there were times when eugenics laws sterilised epileptics, repealed three years after I was born in my state (Michigan).


And yet, all you have to do with epilepsy today is punch the terms "epilepsy" and "demon possession" into a search engine and look at the myriad of blogs and Christian apologetics sites in the USA in the XXI Century that still hold neurologists are deluded and I am either possessed or stoned to death (and not by Colorado's recent ballot initiative).

I worry for my country, I do.

Comment by Joan Denoo on December 3, 2012 at 2:12pm

There was a time in USA history when bloodletting, lobotomies, owning slaves, not allowing women to vote, and burning people at the stake or crushing them to death if suspected of being a witch, was acceptable. Times and our Constitution have changed. 

There was a time when Republicans won in 2010, and they leveraged that win to secure the roughly $1 trillion in cuts in the Budget Control Act. 

Democrats won in 2012, and they intend to leverage that win to secure the roughly $1 trillion in revenue from the expiration of the high-end Bush tax cuts.

How can we expect small business and wage-earners to carry more of the financial load of our nation's expenses? 

Why are small businesses and wage-earners not rallying for more taxes on wealth earning instruments? 

Why are we not making adjustments to make contributions to costs of government more equal? 

If the private sector can't create more jobs, why is the government not making work programs to get men and women working and paying taxes?

Why are there not more loans to small businesses and entrepreneurially ambitious individuals?

What plan/s have the highest probability of getting our nation out of the current recession?

Comment by Joan Denoo on December 3, 2012 at 12:14pm

Well it is about time, Obama took a stand and I surely hope he maintains that position. 
Even Boehner was surprised, saying, "The president's idea of negotiation is: Roll over and do what I ask." 

President Obama, Hold on to 39.6 percent tax increase to those making over $250,000 a year.

I don't understand why Obama is willing to give any cuts to Medicare and safety net programs. 
Stand for jobs that pay living wages. 
Make sure our very young and elderly, as well as wounded war vets get services they need. 
Cut back on military spending. 
Stop bailing out banks.
Create universal health care, free of privatization. 
Comment by Grinning Cat on December 2, 2012 at 8:41pm

Louisiana's school voucher program was ruled unconstitutional on Friday under the state constitution; public school funds could not be used for private school tuition. Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) vowed to appeal.

About 5,000 students are currently receiving the vouchers, which cover tuition and fees at scores of private and parochial schools, including some small church-based schools that infuse all their classes with Biblical references and do not teach subjects such as evolution.

In the same discussion, Guitarzeroh Tubes posted a link to the scary "11 Eye-Opening Highlights from a Creationist Science Textbook":

http://www.11points.com/Books/11_Eye-Opening_Highlights_From_a_Crea...

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 26, 2012 at 2:29pm

Carl Douglas - Kung fu fighting(original)

Do current affairs feel overwhelming? Remember what Kung Fu is all about. 

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 25, 2012 at 3:12pm
Comment by Joan Denoo on November 23, 2012 at 10:26pm

Dale McGowan: Parenting Beyond Belief

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lgDb_IMoKyQ

"Dale McGowan is Executive Director of the Foundation Beyond Belief, and he is editor and co-author of Parenting Beyond Belief and Raising Freethinkers, the first comprehensive resources for nonreligious parents. He writes the secular parenting blog The Meming of Life and presents seminars for nontheistic parents across the United States. In 2008 he was named Harvard Humanist of the Year by the Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard University."

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 23, 2012 at 9:23pm
Richard Collins. Some wisdom on the art of secular parenting, via the Kiosk at the Secular Web:It starts off with:

-- Dale McGowan, Parenting Beyong Belief

Earlier this year on the way home from school, she told me about a chat she'd had that day with Mrs. W, her teacher at [her] Lutheran preschool. "I told Mrs. W I think God is just pretend. But I said I'm still thinking about it. And I asked if she thinks God is pretend."


I looked at her in the rearview mirror, munching on the apple I'd for once remembered to bring for her snack, so beautifully innocent of the fact that she had stood with her little toes at the edge of an age-old chasm, shouting a courageous and ancient question to her teacher on the far rim. My daughter, you see, hasn't heard that there are unaskable questions.

"So what'd Mrs. W say?"

"She said no," Laney said, matter-of-factly. "She said, 'I think God is very real.'"

"Uh huh. Then what did you say, Laney?"

"I said, 'That's okay--as long as you're still thinking about it, too.'"

It closes by noting that:

I often find myself humbly suggesting that it is possible to raise children every bit as ethical, caring, loving, humane, inspired and well-adjusted without religion as with it. In reality (my favorite place to be, after all) I don't believe parenting without religion is merely "as good" as parenting with it. I think it is immeasurably better. I think it blows the doors off religious parenting in every respect--powerful inquiry, reasoned ethics, ecstatic inspiration, cosmic humility and profound humanity--and I am floored by my good fortune to live in one of the few human generations to date when raising children without religious indoctrination is a practical possibility.

-- Dale McGowan, Parenting Beyong Belief
Comment by Joan Denoo on November 21, 2012 at 5:46pm

Petraeus Should Have Been Fired Years Ago

"By endorsing Spiritual Fitness repeatedly, Petraeus revealed a total disregard for both the "No Establishment Clause" of the First Amendment to the Constitution and the "No Religious Test" prohibition of Clause 3, Article VI of the same. It’s no exaggeration – it’s a bare-knuckled fact – that Petraeus was complicit in a de facto mutiny against America's most cherished and beloved governing document.  This violation of his oath to support and defend that foundational bedrock document is a matter of import on a scale far greater than his foolish affair. That dalliance itself constitutes a high crime, if there is jurisdiction extant under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, as well as an unforgivable security risk to the Central Intelligence Agency."

"Spiritual Fitness is a markedly destructive and corrosive agent that has the practical consequence of rampant demoralization, disorientation, and disorder within the armed forces."

"As a part of a national "stand-down" ostensibly meant to address the tragic wave of suicides that have reached tsunami proportions within the U.S. Army, 800 brand new soldiers at Fort Sam Houston in Texas were forced to attend a mandatory training session that ended up, incontrovertibly, as a sectarian, electronic candle lit, Christian prayer vigil 

"Thirty-eight of these soldiers (the vast majority of whom happen to be practicing Protestants or Roman Catholics), with the brave Staff Sergeant Victoria Gettman in the courageous forefront, swiftly contacted our civil rights foundation for immediate help. A federal complaint against the Army is now contemporaneously pending an ongoing official investigation."  

This is NOT an "enemy within" it is a government that uses our young men and women as fodder for wars of greed for power and property. It is a nation that does not provide jobs for its young and many decide to join the military for economic reasons, not to free people from suffering. Using religion to make men and women more obedient and willing to make sacrifices of themselves for some unworthy cause drives a sane person to terrible self-destruction. 

 
 
 

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