History is a funny thing. The more I live through the more out of touch with history I have become. There was a time when a first person account of a historical event was deemed primary evidence when assessing both the event itself and the implications that followed from the event. Now eye-witness accounts are treated as 'anecdotal evidence' as if they were some story I made up about what happened even though it happened in front of my eyes and to me. Unless they mesh with the received wisdom or support a political expediency in the present time, which they never seem to do, then the events of my life are cast aside like the world I speak of never existed. Like I never existed. I have become an Orwellian non-person and have been written out of the history of my own life.

Sometimes I want to echo the pathetic cry of Joseph Merrick: "I am a human being!"

When I insist "That's not what happened, I was there, I lived through it" I am met with blank stares "like cows at a passing train."

It is the oddest feeling to be told that I am incompetent to comprehend and assess the events of my own life. I'm sixty-two years old. I have been a part of every political, social and religious movement of the last half of the 20th Century. And, as I would like my epitaph someday to read, "I tried to pay attention."

I have studied furiously in the last thirty years, much harder than I ever did in university and with no credits toward a degree in anything. I studied because I wanted to know the truth.

The truth. There's another word that has lost all meaning. When I dare say there are true and false beliefs about anything, or worst of all declare there is truth and there are lies made up by evil men with evil motivations. When I extend the Biblical line: "The truth will set you free..." adding "...and anyone not telling the truth is trying to keep people in slavery" I might as well be speaking in Latin for all the comprehension in the faces of the people I'm talking to.

I don't give a good Goddamn for all the hard scientists out there who want to hedge their bets by calling truth such wishy-washy names as 'theory' or 'consensus' or 'probability.' That's great for building a career in a university, but it is an act of moral cowardice nonetheless. If you don't believe in what you are asking others to believe enough to call it the truth, then you are half a man and the half that's left isn't worth the gunpowder it would take to blow it up!

I have been fighting tooth and nail for over thirty years now only to see the United States slip further and further into the abyss. I have watched in awe and terror as this country has reached the state where fully half of our citizens are about to vote for the Libertarian/Fundamentalist bloc who openly declare their hatred for democracy. I cannot for the very life of me understand how people are willing to vote to have their own power to vote taken away from them. I cannot understand how their are people who claim to Libertarians and Atheists at the same time.

Is it that they simply don't know their own history? I do. I lived through their history, was a part of it, just like I was a part of Christianity as Fundamentalist mandated political platforms as a necessary part of what it means to be Christian.

I reject both Socialism and Libertarianism and for the same reason: they are both 'isms.' That is to say, they are forms of government based not on the will of and with the permission of the governed but rather are based on ideology. All ideologically based forms of government are dictatorships. They have to be. In order to gain power and survive they have to take away the right of the people to choose their own government. The first thing once they are voted into power is to take away the power to vote from the people.

The only form of government that allows the people governed to change their form of government is a Democracy. Libertarianism wants to tie themselves in with Republicanism just as they want to tie their economics to Capitalism hoping that no one will notice they are neither until it is too late.

Barry Goldwater was the last Republican just as William F. Buckley was the last true Conservative. And they both detested and disavowed Libertarianism as a radical, anarchist born of the Sixties complete with Vietnam war protests, draft-card burning and a platform that consisted of legalizing all drugs on the theory that each man...not woman, they are die hard patriarchal misogynists just like the Mormon front man they are running for president...has the right to put whatever he wants into his body no matter how much damage he does to his family and society.

Most importantly, Libertarianism is Utopian. Their core beliefs have never been tried on a national scale or even on a communal level with success. They want, in spite of the Globalization of the World Economy, to pull us backwards into economic and political isolationism. They want to disband and disarm the federal government turning over all the powers of a legitimately elected government to what they call 'private enterprise.' Think about Zimmerman. Where has he gone in this election? Think about the disbanding of all Federal law enforcement agencies. Think about turning over the state police departments to 'contractors' and the local police to armed Neighborhood Watch groups. Does anyone want to live in such a country? Yet we have Blue State Liberals, of all people, who would be willing to allow the Red States to secede from the Union and undue the work Abraham Lincoln and hundreds of thousands of young me died to preserve. But the Red States don't want to secede, isn't that an historical flip-flop? They want the whole country. Libertarians have openly stated that they want people from both sides of the political aisle to join them. They want and intend to create a nation where there is only one party and that is theirs.

Libertarianism is the policy of the worst of the radical underground right groups, groups that have swollen in numbers during the Bush and the Obama administrations. Obama because he's black and rallied all the racists in the country to unite. Bush because his oxymoron-ically named War On Terror didn't happen to include the terrorists groups in the US like the Posse Commitatus...who were actually given legitimacy by the state of Arizona when they hired them as mercenaries to patrol their borders and enforce their immigration laws... and the militant militia movement whose supreme accomplishment was the Oklahoma City bombing. Ask yourself why in the middle of an alleged War On Terror these groups were given a free pass like the John Birch Society was given by the FBI in the Sixties? More to the point, why did the Supreme Court in this country turn over the plum the NRA backed terrorist groups had been begging for, the radical reinterpretation of the Right to Bear Arms to mean people had a right to stockpile private arsenals to be used, by their own admission, if the Democratically elected government of the US dared to pass much needed gun control laws?

No matter which man wins this election, Obama or Romney, it is the United States that will lose. If Obama wins he will only be kept from doing anything for another four years while the Libertarian/Fundamentalist bloc becomes even stronger and deeper entrenched. If Romney wins then the push for an ideologically based dictatorship will now have the White House as well as the Supreme Court and both Houses of Congress behind their movement.

I'm tired. I've lived too long and, frankly my dear, I don't give a damn any longer. I want to get myself and my family out of this country and back into the Free World again.

If I'd only had the foresight in the Sixties to ask everybody who told me to "Love it or Leave It" for a dollar I'd be rich enough to get out by now.

Anybody up for starting an Atheist Refugee Society?

Views: 171

Tags: Christianity, Fundamentalism, Libertarianism, atheism, election, politics

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Comment by Philip Jarrett on November 6, 2012 at 12:54am

TNT666

I apologize for my previous comments.  I do not wish to insult or argue with you.  You are, obviously an intelligent and well-travelled woman.  I have had a different set of experiences in my life, yes, but I have always tried clarify my understanding through reading in a variety of fields.

My comment on physics is directed to those who feel  expertise in their own field translates to other diciplines they have not studied.  The Hard Scientists vs the Soft Sciences clash.  I read in both fields depending on what I am researching.  I don't read physicists when I am interested in history...well, I should backtrack a little...I've been working my way through  

Proving History: Bayes's Theorem and the Quest for the Historical J... by Richard Carrier (Apr 24, 2012)

I am a Mathophobic with a touch of dyslexia so it is not an easy read for me.

Carrier is a Biblical scholar with excellent creds.  He is a Mythologist...the belief that Jesus did not exists as a man but was rather a mythologic being altogether.  I've also read 

Did Jesus Exist?: The Historical Argument for Jesus of Nazareth by Bart D. Ehrman (Mar 20, 2012)

defending the consensus of scholars in the field.  Namely, that Jesus did have an existence as a human being even though much of the details of his life have been glossed over by myths from other religions.  Ehrman is a Biblical scholar and an open agnostic whose work is excellent in defeating common misconceptions.  His work is an excellent place to start Christians on the road to freedom.  His book Misquoting Jesus:  The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why is a good place to start for anyone...Christian or atheist...who doesn't have a solid footing in historical scholarship.  I have to admit, though, his book defending the consensus opinion against the Mythologists wasn't a slam dunk.  Several times, he lapsed into a petulance that showed he wasn't so much convinced as he was trying to be convincing.

Your comments on perception were particularly apt.  I agree with you more now, though I still feel there is a place for personal accounts, especially then the account challenges the received wisdom.  I am reminded of 

Angels and Ages:  A Short Book About Darwin, Lincoln and Modern Life by Alan Gopnik

He makes the same point you do based on eyewitness accounts of the death lf Lincoln.  I believe it was Steward, but I don't have the book in front of me, who said at the moment of Lincoln's death either:

"Now he is one with the Angels"

or

"Now he is one with the Ages."

depending on which 'eyewitness' you believe.

You are correct about perceptions.  It's late, I have a larger post on Exorcism...alas, it is a personal account...explaining how the misperception my childhood Night Terrors/Sleep Paralysis lead me to almost destroy myself and my family.

I came out of years of believing in the reality of my experience by reading up on the condition I have and coming to grasp with the mundaneness of the solution.  The same things still happen to me and, while they are happening they are as real as anything else in my life.  

I still believe in Democracy the Rule of Law and that there is a huge difference between justice and vengeance that we forget at our own peril. 

As far as young people, I remember my time protesting the Vietnam War and the killings at Kent State.  But I have no illusions that I knew more back then than I do now.  Young people are simply easier to manipulate and make for better photo-ops.  Just because you've grown up doesn't mean anything when it comes to your politics.  The line of difference is now, as it always has been, a matter of class.  I remember when my Revolution dreams ended in the Sixties.  I was hunkered down in the street next to a 55 gallon barrel of burning trash I had just burned the American flag in and I looked up and saw one of the protestors getting up and putting on their cap and gown and heading off to graduate.  I remember when it came my turn, I dropped out a semester before graduation.  I did it because I knew I was weak and without a degree I'd be less likely to trade my ideals for money.

I'm a poet and a writer...I like to think of myself as a Storyteller.  I'm not enthralled by science.  We don't live in a quantum universe.  We live in a culture that splits and merges and bumps against and away from other cultures.  One of the saddest things I ever witnessed...with my eyes, of course...was a professor of physics lecturing on Quantum Suicide...you know the idea?  Buy up a bunch of lottery tickets and if you lose kill yourself and in doing so you kill yourself in all the universes where you didn't win the lottery and wake up in one of the universes where you won.  What was sad was the only illustration he could come up with was from an episode of Star Trek.  For all his intellect, to me that man was as uneducated as the guy serving fries at Micky D's.  He was trying to figure a way that quantum suicide wouldn't work using quantum theory.  He didn't care much for my suggestion he shouldn't bother saving these people because they were morally inferior beliving money is worth more than life and that it would serve a good Darwinian purpose to allow such idiots to take themself out of the gene pool.

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 4, 2012 at 11:09pm

Phillip, you make a very good point that debate and discussion don't work with a great many people. Unfortunately we observe that in political winds this election. No amount of reasoning works and I have yet to hear or read of rational responses to my questions or my propositions. Perhaps I have been more successful than I thought in finding people who enjoy debates where we don't seek to win, but to exchange ideas. I like that. 

TNT666, yes, I like Green, too. Not many do, and many want to go to war over it, but there are enough people who go on about their business of creating a Green lifestyle, without fuss or fury. We have great fun trying to figure out how to get our groceries in the winter without going out into the wet, cold, windy weather.  Or how to shop to get through a month. If I am successful I will have only five shopping days between now and spring; that means lots of beans and rice and frozen vegetables and bringing in a month's supply of all kinds of protein. It all works out OK. 

I, too, was successful in world travel without any muggings or rape, or such; just a few screw ups in making connections. 

If anyone gets an idea to go to war, I am not interested in seeing my grand children and great-grandchildren signing up. I wonder if Hitler and Tojo had won if we couldn't have defeated their  greed in ways other than war? Perhaps not. Perhaps I am just an old woman too tired of wars and deaths and woundings and destruction. It just doesn't make sense. I am not at all proud of USA's historical record of imperialism; sure, we get cheap oil and pineapple and bananas in the winter, but we could just as well find other ways of creating a lovely lifestyle without going after all the resources of others to satisfy our greedy appetites. 
When I read about Buddism, it didn't take me long to learn about their brutal history of warring and their silly notions of his birth and such. Yes, I like Buddhist meditative practices and do them in my 50' x 100' back yard. It feels so nice back there that family and friends and neighbors enjoy its peace and quiet as well. Even the children are more peaceful here. It is just a place where cats, kids and cabbages grow to be that which their DNA directs them. 

Religiosity makes no sense to me and I find it boring at best and disgusting at worst. It is too easy to read ancient stories, believe they are relating factual events, and then try to live to some construct that comes from the minds of humans to bring "instruction" that I really don't need or want or see any reason to enter into that fiction. 
The direction our economic and political lives develop falls so far out of my realm of being reasonable or even of healthy, there is no reason to go there. Except I do; kind of like a miller attracted to a flame. 

Comment by TNT666 on November 4, 2012 at 6:58pm

In politics, I vote Green, philosophically I am a Deep Green, and socially, I find Noam Chomsky to be the most sensible critic, but I don't adulate him or aim to agree with him on everything.

My opinion regarding personal safety and justice is based on my experience of my own personal safety, as a female having travelled (not resort tourism) solo to several countries, having had to deal with many dicey and high risk situations, and remained un-raped, un-mugged, un-hijacked, while most others around me suffered those.

As for revolutions, indeed, they cost lives, it's the only way to strip the rich and power hungry of their self declared supremacy, short jail sentences make no difference for those people. The more millions of humans exist on the planet, the less value each of us represents, this is demonstrated every day in the realities of economics and politics. I know people who's perception convinces them of gods, I have family members who think they're telepathic, others who think they can tell the future, I have friends who perceive auroras and perception (placebo effect) is a large component of both conventional and false medicines. I place near zero trust in perception, unless it is corroborated by several people and encompasses several senses, and is repeatable. If something like a UFO appeared in my piece of sky tomorrow, I would not trust that perception, I would seek out a more rational explanation. Schizos trust those voices in their head to be reality. Our perception is a very flawed faculty.

Zen? fuck zen, I don't value Eastern religions any more than I do Western ones, they are both patriarchal and both have committed great crimes, Tibetans only became "pacifists" when the Chinese started laying into them, before that, they were conquerors themselves, again, faulty perceptions.

You find me childish, well I'm not entirely unhappy about that, but I'd prefer the term youthful. Overwhelmingly in our society youth are progressive and seniors vote for conservative backward governments. Way back when I was a young adult, I made a vow to respect youthful opinions as being valuable.
I don't believe in meritocracy, and think Ayn Rand is one of the most deluded writers of all times, bar those that wrote bible bits.

As for my critical mind... I have no idea why you bring up physicists, I do not glorify any profession and I always vote against space research funding. My being a life-long atheist forced me to fight the catholic school system that was imposed upon me by the government-church coalition, my critical mind is my one pride. That one person who's perception I trust has made a life's work of fighting the lies of civilisation, and devoting his life to a species-egalitarian approach to the world. If you speak to anyone who knows me in real life, you'll find that "critical mind" is the first adjective that anyone applies to me, über critical.

The question of whether someone is a libertarian is loaded, you get to chose the definition you want, then hammer the person no matter what they answer. A friend of mine always states: "I'm not a one book man", I say "I'm not a one label person" I'm not a one country person, I'm not a one job person, I'm not a one lover person. I have allowed my disgust of religious right wing society to determine my professional outlook, which means I work very little and therefore live very frugally. Libertarian??? it's simply not a relevant word to me in this context.

As for democracy... it's simply the rule of masses, and at 95% religiosity on the planet, nope, I have zero interest in democracy. A self respecting democracy would ensure 100% of its citizenry reaches a higher education (not government funded career-training, but real university) and such an education would eventually eradicate superstition. Society is headed in the opposite direction. Education job-training has become so expensive that instead of freeing people it enslaves.

Comment by Philip Jarrett on November 4, 2012 at 6:20pm

Joan Denoo wrote:

"Open discussion and debate, without restrictions or name-calling offers the best possibility. There is no need to get angry or crude, or insulting."

When would consider the time to get angry...or crude, or insulting...comes? Open discussion and debate are fine in times of peace.

50% of the people in the United States are ready to vote away our democracy. Unwittingly, perhaps...willful ignorance seems a better term to me. Ignorance is closely related to laziness, but that's a matter for a different blog post. Half the country is willing to put Hayek aside, because he believes in "Centrally planned economy" through the federal government but want to replace him with Mises...the turning over of the functions of government to private enterprise...an act that is a much more intrusive than anything Hayek could ever have conceived of.

But still you want to have debates?

Our enemy has stockpiled weapons for years...real weapons, not just ideas...do you really want to throw books at them when they come to your door?

We are playing out the end-game of Enlightenment ideals, especially democracy. I have been fighting for 30 years now. I've been hearing the same stink from Christians over and over again...the same stink I'm hearing now from people who claim to be atheists but are in bed with the Christian Right.

Never once, in all my years first involved in and later fighting, have I seen an "Open discussion and debate" accomplish anything. What I have seen is a growing censorship of what is allowed to be talked about in this country. The very Radical Underground Right can now talk their treason openly.

I came to a similar epiphany in regards to 'open discussion and polite debate' with Christianity a while back. Now I seem to be wasting my time with Libertarians as well.

I would apologize for writing crude and offensive posts but that would I should censor myself...more to the point, it would mean I shouldn't speak in my own voice and, if someone is offended by what I write I am at fault.

I'll put my post out about Christians. You can pretty much include the other half of the Libertarian/Fundamentalist bloc in what I say.

Comment by Philip Jarrett on November 4, 2012 at 5:51pm

TNT666: In accordance with your suggestions I re-read your first post. I have read your subsequent posts as well. I have no problem with anything you said to me and I said to you. I don't agree with you, of course, but so what?

You don't believe in democracy, I'm not misquoting you on that, am I?

" ...democracy is about the worst system ever invented. It's simply a way for those who've ALWAYS had power in the first place, to camouflage their power in the guise of "people's will"

As I responded, this is a failure of democracy you are pointing out. Just as the control of our country by special interest groups with billions to spend is a failure of democracy in our country. Yes, these are things that need to be corrected. And the people of our country and others can only make these corections if they are allowed to vote. Hence, democracy is capable of correcting it's own problems as long as revolutionaries are tamed and kept in their place.

Your solution, what you prefer to democracy, is:

" I do however believe in toppling power as often as possible through revolution.Those rotten apples are ruining the barrel and better to cull them than leave them in power."

You believe in periodic revolutions. How often would be enough? Once a century? Every fifty years? Twenty? The problem is when a new government is opposed on people through revolution then those whose opinions were shoved aside become the leaders of the next revolution. Have you really thought through the cost of periodic revolutions? The human lives lost, the inevitable police state following...since you are forcing you beliefs on others...that is said to be temporary but alwas ends being permanent, the seeds of the next revolution being sown on the battlefields of the first in all those who lost loved ones, the disruption in the economy, the isolationism of our country...I could go on, but why bother? You have a romantic notion of what a revolution is and means.

I don't think you have a 'naturally critical mind' as you boast. The idea that one group of people...physicists, mainly...have superior minds is just so much self-agrandizement. What you are saying is your mind is superior to my experience in the real world. That theory trumps reality. If your degree was in economics or history or political theory or philosophy or biblical scholarship or some field that actually had a bearing on this subject then I would readily bow to your superior education and willing read any suggested literature you can recommend to me.

The very idea that you would trust the perceptions of only one other person shows is such an egocentric pronouncement I would just as soon let your own words condemn you. I trust the perceptions of many hundreds of people because they know more than I do on particular subjects.

"Our perception is much more about ego than truth." ?

I am not sure I understand. This sounds vaguely Zen. The need to destroy the ego in order to achievement enlightenment. If that's what you mean, then I can dismiss it out of hand. The basic mistake is the failure to recognize that our 'ego' is all we are. Like most things I know, I learned that one the hard way by going through hideous exorcims only to realize the 'demon' that the exorcist wanted to drive out of we was actually 'me.' Ayn Rand must be spinning in her grave to hear such blather.

"I much prefer immediate justice. If ever someone attempts to rape/maim/kill me, their life will be in game..."

Foolish bravado, childish thinking picked up from movies and television, the kind of garbage talk you hear from people on the bus who brag about their attitude.

I'm sorry, I have been accused of being crude. But how else can a grown man respond to this foolishness? And, more to the point, why should I 'self-censor' myself in an effort to not offend peole who think like this?

You don't like the justice system? Change it. You think the justice system serves the rich and not the poor? Change it. All of the arguments you put forward can be changed.

But only if you live in a democracy.

These subjects are open for debate. But the events of my life are not. What is there for me to gain in such a discussion? Will the other person present me with evidence so astonishingly convincing I will be forced to admit that what happened to me didn't happen? And if I go along with this brilliant person's reasoning, what exactly is the difference between that and brainwashing?

I've been brainwashed by professionals. I know what it feels like, how its done and what it feels like to come out from under the control of others and to start thinking for myself again.

I am accused of having made a mistake by sending this to everyone on the list. If someone could help elucidate me on the proper protoco on such things...in writing of course, something I should have read before joining...then I will not make the mistake again. J

Just don't give me "This is something you should know already without having it explained to you." I don't do self-censorship. If you want to hear a real rant, get me started on the Liberal "Family friendly" censorship.

TNT666, you never answered my question: "Are you a Libertarian?

Nor did you choose to comment on my assertion there is a Libertariain/Fundamentalist bloc in the United States that is the political base of the Neo-Republican Party.

I'm a 'lost cause'? Cute. Yes, I am a 'lost cause' to your enticements and obfuscation. Proud to be one.

Comment by Philip Jarrett on November 4, 2012 at 1:13am

Thank you, Joan.  I've been trying to get out of this country since the Seventies.  Alas, I am a poor man in a rich country!  We are faced with much the situation as the Jews before WW II...and I know there's this favorite rule of Internet communications:  "The first person who mentions the Nazi's loses the argument."  That's just BS.  The correlation between Germany in 1930s under the Nazis and the situation in the US today is just too evident to be disregarded.

We have a country that suffered a humiliating defeat at war...Germany in WW I and the US in Vietnam...and have been trying to regain a sense of our national identity for years.  We are a country that has record numbers of idle young and middle-aged men out of work...The Depression for Germany and the Bush's depression in the US...and angry.  We have a distinct problem with a particular social group.  In Germany before WW II it was the Jews.  In the United States it is the poor and the shifting of the majority of voters from white Caucasians to People of Color.  Then there's religion.  In Germany, it was a form of Christian/Paganism with anti-semitism as it's designated bad guy.  In the US, it is Millianial Christian complete with their own Thousand Year Christ-Reich.  Then, of course, there is Libertarian Fascism.  Nazism had the government taken over the economy.  Libertarianism has the wealthy taking over the government.  All the decisions are made in the Back Rooms, it's just the addressess of the Back Rooms that are changing

Atheists...at least, those of us not lucky enough to live in a liberal state or a university town with their Ivory Towers renewed as Ivory Buttresses against the real world outside their fortress...Zardoz, if you are from my generation and understand the reference.

Right now it's one of those "If I win the lottery" day dreams.  One of the reasons I got out here on Atheist Nexus was to try and connect with atheists in Japan.  I am a poor man, but it is poverty I deliberately selected when I deliberately quit university within a semester of graduating because I want to be one with my ancestors and not just another part of the problem...which is all the clerical class in the US is and has ever been.

Relocation to another country...a country in the Free World, since the US is determined to go the other way...is a viable option.  I prefer Japan...somewhere around Kyoto...Kyoto is to Tokyo as San Francisco is to Hollywoood.  Any country that had the good sense to kick out and martyr the Christian missionaries...correctly understanding them to be the first wave of colonization...is aces to me.

I am an idea man, not a money man.  I am completly serious about an Atheist Refugee Society. I believe getting out of this country is and will become moreso a practical solution to a pressing problem.  

People do not understand.  In West Virignia, it is not simply my career and reputation that is on the line...I'm too old to worry about such things anyway...it is my life and the life of my wife and of my children and grandchildren.

Just because you're raising an alarm doesn't mean you are an alarmist.

And not shouting 'fire' in a crowded theater when the theater really is on fire is moral cowardice.

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 4, 2012 at 1:12am

Phillip, I have lived a little longer than you, 76 years, and experienced the end of the Great Depression, WWII, the Korean war as a child, and the Viet Nam war as a young mother as an anti-war protester, even as my then husband was a battle field surgeon in that beautiful, war-torn place. I marched in the civil rights protests of the 1960 and lived in Washington, DC in 1968. You may remember that year ... Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated as was Robert Kennedy. I marched and was hit over my head by a horse-mounted police thug hired to prevent protest, peaceful as we were. So, I have earned my credentials of knowing and being involved in efforts to make our country safer and healthier for all our people. Now, in this mess, we revert back to harsher and poorer times. I am an avid reader of history, especially labor union history and understand the struggles they had to endure, just to get safe working conditions and decent hours, as well as health and retirement benefits. Those protections crumble slowly, constantly, even after all the bloodbaths. 
So, now what? In my humble opinion, I think those of us who remember the "old days" as not being so "good" need to tell the stories of struggles of the past. If we forget or decide not to talk about our history we imply that we agree with the delusions of better times in the past. If we deny reality, we become part of the problem. Silence implies agreement with those delusions and denials.
What do I want for my children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren?

!. I want religion out of politics. It has a corroding effect and a terrible history of violence throughout all historical time. Violence used as a means to secure their desired ends needs to be challenged, non-violently. 

2. I want money out of politics. Even those "glorious" Greeks and Romans denied some people who were born on and worked the land the right to participate in rules that governed them. Our own history denied women and blacks and Native American and Asians the right to participate in law making. The glorious words of the Declaration and Constitution and Bill of Rights did not include these groups and did not intend to include them. It is about time that all citizens have the responsibility to vote for representatives and legislation. The early documents stated the only citizens were landowners. Some brave people insisted that landownership should not be the criteria for citizenship. Slowly, those barriers come down.

3. I want many points of view allowed into debates. Remember those awful McCarthy hearings and the Black List of people who protested in support of people who work for wages? Anyone who protested was and is to this day called "Pinko" or "Commie" because of support for workers. I have read many books and participated in many discussions about other governmental systems. I have done research in 32 countries of the world to understand first hand the role politics plays in the lives of women and their families. I can say in all honesty, laissez-faire capitalism does not work, nor does communism or socialism. There is a political system that will work; we just haven't had the intelligence or courage to try it. Open discussion and debate, without restrictions or name-calling offers the best possibility. There is no need to get angry or crude, or insulting. Disagreement just means we haven't clarified our problems and goals and processes yet. Perhaps we will end life on the planet before we are able to figure it all out. 

Well, that is enough for tonight. I am tired. Good night. 

Comment by TNT666 on November 4, 2012 at 12:57am

Phillip, you have missed the entire meaning of my comments to you. I started with saying it was interesting, and I had some agreement and some not, then addressed the three nots and the context. I made not a single personal attack, nor anything about political leanings. The vitriol in your answer back further demonstrates my previous comment. I saved your email for several days because I thought it was interesting, and wanted to spend time to read you well and respond well. You chose to read into it something else entirely. You may want to try re-reading my first comment to you. Anyway, I see this is a lost cause, good luck in your refuge.

Comment by Steph S. on November 4, 2012 at 12:43am
I'm in for being part of the Atheist Refugee Society! Count me in with Joan!
Comment by Joan Denoo on November 4, 2012 at 12:29am

Phillip, you wrote, "Anybody up for starting an Atheist Refugee Society?"
Count me in!

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