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.  

Members: 128
Latest Activity: 10 hours ago

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

Widening Inequality Combined with Modest Growth

Started by Joan Denoo 10 hours ago. 0 Replies

"The author, Benjamin M. Friedman, argues that inequality, combined with only modest growth, can have grave moral consequences. History suggests that, in the past, a rising standard of living has promoted tolerance for others, commitment to economic…Continue

Tags: stagnation, democracy, autocracy, opportunity, intolerance

Are Republicans quashing protest in order to establish a police state?

Started by Grinning Cat. Last reply by Grinning Cat on Saturday. 2 Replies

A dangerous and disturbing trend:Republican lawmakers at the state level—often with the backing of police unions ... in at least 11 states ... have either introduced or threatened to introduce bills that make it more dangerous or costly to attend…Continue

Tags: authoritarianism, totalitarianism, police state, Republican Party, GOP

Things to thank the current Republican president* for

Started by Grinning Cat. Last reply by Grinning Cat on Friday. 4 Replies

[Written by Susan Keller; shared more than 29,000 30,000 times on Facebook.]I can't believe I'm saying this, but it looks like Trump is actually making…Continue

Tags: president, 45, education, subscriptions, journalism

GET READY FOR THE FIRST SHOCKS OF TRUMP’S DISASTER CAPITALISM Naomi Klein January 24 2017

Started by Joan Denoo on Thursday. 0 Replies

WE ALREADY KNOW that the Trump administration plans to deregulate markets, wage all-out war on “radical Islamic terrorism,” trash climate science and unleash a fossil-fuel frenzy. It’s a vision that can be counted on to generate a tsunami of crises…Continue

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Comment by Joan Denoo on August 28, 2016 at 12:37pm

@Joseph 

I disagree with you that poverty  “isn't an example of how people make bad choices.” Just by simple observation, I agree that US prejudices limit opportunities for many people, i.e. nationality, race, religion, age, size, etc. There exist all kinds of things that limit the opportunity for otherwise skilled people. I do make the mistake of thinking of white populations because that is the culture with which I am acquainted. However, out of my all-white elementary (0 non-whites) and secondary school (400 white to 24 people of color+-). I observed foolish elementary school students at the 40 and 60-year reunions, and they exhibit the same silly behaviors as when we were kids. Why did those stupid kids not make sensible decisions when they reached the ripe old age of 60 and 80? I haven’t a clue! Did they want to be poor? I don't think so. Did they want to live in run-down houses? Hardly. Did they like to drive beat-up clunkers? I can’t imagine it. 

What about the minority kids in my high school class? I was pretty good friends with most of them, and they all sought education in the skilled trades, in businesses, or in professions. What was different about those kids who had few opportunities, and what opportunities they did have they created themselves. Also, their parents pushed them very hard. They were mostly at the top of my math and science classes in high school. Perhaps their parents understood that life was going to be harder for them than for their white classmates. 

Comment by tom sarbeck on August 28, 2016 at 12:11pm

HuffPo?

The one now owned by General Electric?

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on August 28, 2016 at 12:02pm

Now boyz . . . 

Here's a little something to cheer you up. From HuffPo no less:

Donald Trump Is Going to Be Elected

Comment by Joseph P on August 28, 2016 at 11:42am

... which are the words of someone who has no reasonable reply.

Heh heh heh heh heh.

Oh well, I didn't expect much from you anyway.  No worries.

Comment by tom sarbeck on August 28, 2016 at 11:39am

     So, let me see if I have this straight, Tom. ....

Joseph, your conclusions (if that's what they are) don't merit a reply.

Comment by Joseph P on August 28, 2016 at 11:34am

In Christie's defense, Trump wasn't talking about Mexicans in general, just the Mexican rapists that they were sending up to America.  Totally different, right?

Comment by tom sarbeck on August 28, 2016 at 11:30am

Bert, das ist subtil.

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on August 28, 2016 at 11:08am

Winston Smith is waiting on line two.

Comment by Joseph P on August 28, 2016 at 10:50am

@Joan

Yeah, the big problem with the arguments that people like Penn make isn't that they aren't validly constructed arguments.  They often aren't validly constructed arguments, but even when they are, they aren't grounded in reality.

To go to one of my favorite, obscene examples, there's Adolph Hitler.  If Hitler's rhetoric was correct, and the Jews, down to a man (and woman), were a monstrous race that was intent upon the destruction of society, then the extermination of them would have been a positive act to save the rest of humanity.  But of course, Hitler was wrong, or at least he was a vicious, sociopathic monster who was willing to use the demonization of a minority group to advance his own ends ... you know, sort of like Donald Trump and Muslims.

There's then the further issue with Penn's argument, in that a removal of taxation would destroy society as we know it.  There has to be a certain consequentialist element to any moral argument.  The consequences of stopping mandatory taxation are too great to allow it.

His equation of taxation with theft/holding-a-gun-to-your-head is also bullshit.  You don't have to use US currency.  Using it requires the acceptance of the social contract that goes along with it, though, ie. taxation.

There are people who manage to go completely off the grid.  They live off the land and are self-sufficient.  There are plenty of places out west where you can do that, and the government will more or less leave you alone.

The absolute, libertarian position that Penn and others are supporting is one of the purest entitlement.  They want the benefits of society without the costs of living in that society.

They like being able to drive on public roads and highways without having to pay for the public roads and highways.  They want to live off of the labor of the poor without supporting the needs of the poor.  I find it very disgusting.

And no, I don't care if he moderates his arguments a bit, in the second half of the video, as a concession to reality.  I couldn't make it past 4 or 5 minutes, myself.  The fact that his ideals are represented by the first half of the video is the important part.

Comment by Joseph P on August 28, 2016 at 8:57am

So, let me see if I have this straight, Tom.  You don't think that there are ... let's see:

voter-suppression laws
state-level theocratic laws
anti-sodomy laws
gay-marriage bans
abortion bans

Are you really saying that you don't think that those things exist?  Dude, they're all active laws in my own state, as well as all throughout the southeast, southwest, and mid-west.

The North Carolina constitution bans anyone who doesn't believe in a god from holding public office, and conservatives tried to enforce that ban as recently as 2009 (http://www.cbsnews.com/news/effort-to-remove-atheist-from-city-coun...) when an Asheville city councilman was open about his atheism.

I explicitly mentioned the Lawrence v. Texas Supreme Court ruling, which took place in 2003.  Up until that ruling, it was perfectly legal in most of the country to arrest people and throw them in jail for having gay sex.  Police in many parts of the country are still doing it, despite it being long-settled at the highest level of the court system.

My state only recently had it's voter suppression law struck down (http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/30/us/federal-appeals-court-strikes-...), which was the most oppressive such law in the country.  It targeted racial minorities and college students.

Organized prayer in public schools is only illegal because of a Supreme Court ruling against it, along with many other theocratic elements which have similarly been struck down at the federal level.  And schools all over the country are still doing it.

And we have many states trying to shut down every abortion provider within their state.  The so-called personhood laws and constitutional amendments would completely ban abortion, and Oklahoma even passed a law that would revoke the medical license of any doctor who performed an abortion, except for within a very tiny set of circumstances (http://www.dailydot.com/layer8/oklahoma-house-bill-total-abortion-ban/).

I remember which questions I asked, but I couldn't believe that you were actually so oblivious to the world around you that you thought they weren't a thing.

So, Kim Davis refusing to issue marriage licenses, as well as the head of the Supreme Court of Alabama directing judges in the state not to issue gay marriage licenses, isn't good enough for you?  Do you even keep up with the news?  You won't see news stories about this sort of stuff, if you don't pay any attention to the world around you.

What do you even mean about people being arrested for violating those laws?  How would someone even be arrested for violating a voter-suppression law?  If they can't comply with the restrictive laws, they simply can't vote.

 
 
 

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