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Hang With Friends

Location: Earth
Members: 867
Latest Activity: 53 minutes ago

Come on in, pull up a chair!

Picture yourself spending some time with congenial friends, sharing your lives and pictures from your cell phones." They're curious about that cool game, song, movie, camping trip, art show, or other event that fascinated you. You talk about all kinds of stuff, poetry, styles, personal achievements, relationships, and bad days. You can share your inner child, and laugh together. They sympathetically listen to your feelings about serious topics like politics or climate change, even when they don't agree.

Personal validation comes from paying attention to one another, giving more than you get. Everyone respects you and themselves, despite our amazing range of personal tastes and interests. They'll tell you they don't agree with an idea or behavior without implying you're a bad person or somehow deficient. It's an "I'm OK, You're OK" kind of fellowship, where nobody tries to make himself look better by picking on somebody else.

Nobody here is into mind games. A discussion started with a loaded guilt-throwing question will be deleted.

This group is not intended to compete with other groups on topics they cover but to "fill in the cracks." Whenever a discussion dwells at length on a topic for which there's an existing group, we urge you to provide members a link to that group to continue along their tangent.

A comment is a shout-out, which will get lost in a few days, because the comment wall is just a random stack.

Please start a discussion to share stories, photos, and videos. Replies will pop up in your "latest activity" and a conversation can develop from the feelings and thoughts you contributed. Groups are built on discussions.

Discussion Forum

Are You a Patriot? (Betty Bowers)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Bertold Brautigan 53 minutes ago. 13 Replies

You might think that Betty Bowers, America's Best Christian, would be stepping outside of her comfort zone in tackling the concept of patriotism.  As it turns out, not only does she have a proper handle on the term and its implications, she also…Continue

Tags: patriot, America's Best Christian, Betty Bowers

We Don't Want Your (Atheist) Money! (The Thinking Atheist)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Grinning Cat yesterday. 11 Replies

I suppose I've heard stories like this before:Conscientious atheist donates money to worthy cause.Worthy cause initially accepts money.Worthy cause discovers source of donation.Worthy cause rejects donation.Swell, eh?  Well Matt Willbourne of…Continue

Tags: American Baptist Churches Association, Murrow Indian Children's Home, The Thinking Atheist, Seth Andrews

The Ark Encounter: A Less than Grand Opening (The Thinking Atheist)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Grinning Cat on Monday. 24 Replies

The day finally arrived.  Ken Ham's Ark Encounter opened on 7 July, 2016 ... to something a bit less than Disney-sized crowds, and more than a couple dissenting voices!  Seth Andrews has gathered a quartet of significant participants in the protest…Continue

Tags: Tracey Moody, Dan Broadbent, Seth Andrews, David Silverman, AronRa

Surreal, I haz it

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Idaho Spud Aug 14. 91 Replies

Surreal, not just found in art.Continue

Tags: surreal

Wedding Haka - Subtitled & translated

Started by Joan Denoo Aug 13. 0 Replies

I ran across a video of a wedding in which a group of wedding guests celebrated with a performance of a traditional Māori ancestral war dance, called a Haka. It was intended for sons, however, the women have joined in a participation of…Continue

Tags: new, traditions., women, men, Haka

Onward (Unpaid) Christian Soldiers (Betty Bowers)

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Chris G Aug 13. 1 Reply

Proselytizing in the military is a dirty little secret most radical christians would rather didn't get out.  Well, never let it be said that America's Best Christian, Betty Bowers, was ever a wallflower where a pit bull was needed!  In the following…Continue

Tags: Military Religious Freedom Foundation, MRFF, America's Best Christian, Betty Bowers

Comment Wall

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Comment by Joan Denoo on July 19, 2016 at 3:47am

Carl, I agree with you, absolutely. Robots and technology take over more of the things humans once performed and production jobs will never return to our shores. 

The population grows exponentially now, creating more people to feed but not enough paid labor to sustain families.

Some work for $2.00 a day, and some even live as slaves, caught by values that exploit and manipulate them.

It would be cheaper than our present welfare program. I wonder what will happen to the individual who has no responsibility to one's own sustenance? A lazy person receives a reward and puts no effort into meeting his or her needs. 

If everyone has $1,000 a month just because they are alive, it wouldn't be very long before business would raise prices in order to scoop up as much of that $1,000 a month as possible. What incentive would the excess labor force have that receives pay for doing nothing? What will those people who work for $1,500 a month do? They could easily scale down expenses and stop working. It would be a disincentive. We would be back into the poverty/wealthy situation again. 

OH, I just watched your films and they ask the same questions as I. 

Comment by Ian Mason on July 19, 2016 at 1:19am

Joan, there is no guaranteed basic income in the Scandinavian countries. All unemployment benefits and social security are being eroded one piece at a time. First was a 50% cut for refugees on "integration allowance" with other small changes for the rest of us but we'll also be losing more as time goes by. Norway could afford to be generous to its citizens by declaring a tax-free month per annum for several years but only because of the income from North-sea oil. That won't be happening any more.

A solution? Karl Marx said "socialism or barbarism." I think that Marx's analysis of capitalism is still the best to date but what to do next is another question. Some sort of co-operative economic system based on the common good instead of profit and without exploitation of the world's poor has to be within human capabilities.  We've come so far - let's take the next step.

Comment by Joan Denoo on July 19, 2016 at 12:11am

Alaska has oil revenues from which the guaranteed income receives funding. When there is not a source of financing, the taxpayers have to pay. As long as the wealthy do not share in the costs of maintaining fire, police, libraries, highways, and many other expenses of public expenses, middle-income people cannot fund basic income for everyone.   

I have two children and their spouses who work terribly hard to increase their standard of living, and pay for high medical costs and education; they can't take on any more expense.  

I have a physically challenged son who can not contribute to funding basic income for all. 

Somewhere in this problem is a solution that I have not been able to see. I appreciate any input on this challenge 

Comment by The Flying Atheist on July 18, 2016 at 11:09pm

Joan, I totally understand your sentiment that all people should have a job with a living wage.  However, the reality is that as technology continually replaces jobs once performed by humans (as it has been since the industrial revolution) and the population continues to grow, a sufficient number of jobs are just not available to all who need or want one.

The basic income concept brings about quite a few questions and challenges.  As we exit the industrial age and progress further into the information age, people need an income in order to survive even though their labor skills are no longer required.  At some point far fewer people will be doing manual labor jobs.  Will they alone be able to provide the funds to financially support a basic income for all others? 

As it is right now, we are using the slave labor of developing countries to manufacture our goods and luxuries.  One may argue that we should "bring those jobs back here."  Unfortunately, those jobs are gone for good.  Contrary to the mistaken belief that our jobs are being robbed from under us by immigrants, the reality is that corporations have given away our working-class jobs on a silver platter to the lowest bidder from other countries.  Those jobs are not returning.

Proponents of a basic income have argued that as people are financially provided for, they will have the time and energy to spend more time with family, to pursue travel, or to explore and partake in artistic abilities or humanitarian endeavors. 

But that all comes at a human cost.  As I mentioned above, the slave labor from other countries is providing for our first-world existence.  It's also important to note that being poor in a first-world country is VASTLY different than being poor in a third world or developing country.

There are many ethical and financial arguments to be made on both sides of the basic income issue.

Comment by The Flying Atheist on July 18, 2016 at 10:49pm

The basic income concept is quite interesting.  One of the political podcasts I listen to regularly, The David Pakman Show, has discussed this topic several times in the past few years.

Below are three clips from that show.

By the way, Swiss voters just voted down the basic income last month.

Comment by k.h. ky on July 18, 2016 at 2:29pm
I was reminded of that from Ian's prior post.
And the rich get richer !!
Comment by k.h. ky on July 18, 2016 at 2:26pm
You can't win in the USA. My b-i-l worked all his life. When he was laid off, at age 66, he found out he wasn't eligible for unemployment because he was drawing a small pension from a prior job. Even though he was taxed for unemployment insurance on every check he ever earned.
How screwed up is that??
Comment by Qiana-Maieev on July 18, 2016 at 2:02pm

A major cut in taxes for seniors would be welcome too.

Comment by Plinius on July 18, 2016 at 7:23am

You're right, Joan, there are so many aspects of a basic income for all - if we'd introduce it I guess the haves will have so many means to keep the not-haves poor that no one will be the better for it. To all your other points: YES!!

Comment by Joan Denoo on July 18, 2016 at 3:38am

Chris, I don't support a primary income because no one is owed a living; I do think everyone is owed a job with living wages. I also believe there should be a cap on wealth, although it would give migraine headaches to those who administer it. It is too easy to hide money, thus maintaining the broad gap between wealthy and poor. 

There should be universal: 

* income level for families with children and a disincentive to have more children, family planning services and abortions legal;

* education with required competencies to pass each level of education with a basic education of reading, writing and arithmetic; 

* health care for all members of the society; 

* retirement for each individual, not for a couple, that is, enough to keep each one living above the poverty level. 

With these basic needs of children and elderly, as well as education and health care secured for all individuals to their highest level of ability or interest, and with higher wages for wage-workers, there would be an incentive for people to work and there would be no need for the highly corruptible welfare system. 

My understanding is that Sweden and the Scandinavian countries have jobs with living wages for all citizens and are taxed to accomplish the cost with a progressive tax rate.

Ten Reasons to Support Basic Income

I can find reasons to not support a basic income. 

 

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