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: 4188
Latest Activity: 22 hours ago

The portrait is Charles Darwin, age 31, in 1840

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Discussion Forum

Ancestral humans had more DNA

Started by Steph S.. Last reply by Gerald Payne 22 hours ago. 6 Replies

Researhers Turn Off Obesity Gene in Mice

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Susan Stanko Aug 22. 5 Replies

Mini moons may zip around Earth

Started by Steph S.. Last reply by Gerald Payne Aug 19. 3 Replies

explanation for reality Theism or Atheism?

Started by dudaboli yev. Last reply by Joseph P Jul 31. 5 Replies

Fossils illustrate evolution of life

Started by Steph S.. Last reply by Gerald Payne Jul 27. 1 Reply

On Abolishing Religion

Started by Rounaq Biswas. Last reply by Gerald Payne Jul 16. 69 Replies

Researchers Say There Might be Life After Death

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by John Jubinsky Jul 15. 56 Replies

On the scientific miracles of Qur'an

Started by Rounaq Biswas. Last reply by Daniel Gotro Jun 26. 25 Replies

Modern Humans Interbred with Neanderthals in Europe

Started by John Jubinsky. Last reply by Gerald Payne Jun 25. 3 Replies

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Comment by Nick Sutherland on September 18, 2013 at 8:58pm

Is there anyone from the Caribbean in this group who has any insights on religion in the islands?

Comment by Joseph P on September 18, 2013 at 6:06pm

Well, Jesus could be a vindictive ass at times, too.  The money changers got on his bad side, daring to mix religion and commerce ... hey, wait a minute ...

You can support almost any position, with the Bible, if you pick and choose enough.  Neo-cons, for example, ignore all of the parables, except for the parable of the talents, because that's the only one that in any way supports capitalism.

Comment by Joan Denoo on September 18, 2013 at 5:54pm

Joseph, you could very well be correct that the idea is bullshit. However, does modern RCC or Protestant religions look and sound anything like the claims of god and jesus representing love, peace, tolerance and compassion? 

Parts of Christianity engenders ideas of “rational” theology with the evolution of capitalism. Believers claim to know god and god’s wlll. They believe they have free will and purpose and meaning as defined by god to go out to the entire world and convert others to their religions. Notions of entitlement allow them to slaughter and plunder, just as god ordered ancient believers to do in the Old Testament, and to abandon a family in order to fulfill god’s purposes in the New Testament. 

Just look around us today at those who support not only slavery, but also support  domination over those who they exploit and manipulate. Notice how Christianity spreads in places that have suffering people or people who feel left out or unable to gain dominance over others.

Focusing on the association between medieval thought with ideas of entitlements given by god, enable them to move closer to god through capitalism. Thinking in terms of production and commerce, dominance in economic, political, and social progress is due to its embrace of Christianity.

Christianity focuses on entitlements and notions of domination that gives a tactical advantage in developing commerce. The Protestant work ethic and the conventional story that religion allows these strategies, empowers them to action.

 

Comment by Joseph P on September 18, 2013 at 4:42pm

Drew Carpenter

This idea of captialism stemming from Christianity is also new to me. I've never thought about it in that way.

Mostly because it's bullshit.  The New Testament is more socialist than I would want a government to be ... and I'm a solid leftist, by American standards.  That's just a con that the neo-cons have slapped together, in a rather successful attempt to get the hyper-religious poor to vote against their own best interests.

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.

Right there with you.  We've just got so far to go to the left, before we reach any kind of reasonable balance, I'm pushing hard for socialism, as a counterbalance.

Comment by Homer Edward Price on September 18, 2013 at 2:12pm

Joan Denoo writes a fine, evidence-based essay, and I have a quibble about only one point.   The current American system is not run in the interests of males, but in the interests of people of either gender who have the credentials or wealth to join the professional class or the elite.  Non-college educated males have lost ground in terms of employment and income for the last 40 years.   Their labor unions have been decimated, and due to their income insecurity, their position in the family has become tenuous as well.   I have had the great privilege of an advanced education.  The men who do not have that--or a genius for computers--are struggling.

Comment by Christopher Lowe on September 18, 2013 at 2:08pm

As long as the Republicans act like a baby whose candy has been snatched out of its hand we'll never know if government policy would work. Obstructionism is hurting both parties and all the people.

Comment by Dorian Moises Mattar on September 18, 2013 at 1:51pm
Everyone, great conversation and input!
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...

 

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