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CD Richards

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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 27, 2017 03:46 PM << Modifed November 27 at 4:08PM >>
It seems to me from reading some of the comments in this thread that there is a sense of concerned disbelief, or perhaps even despair, at the events which we see unfolding around us on a daily basis. I think this sense of unease is quite common, and I certainly share it. Furthermore, it's not something I've been aware of feeling at any time prior to the last few years. I think it's quite justifiable to believe the world appears to be going to hell in a handbasket at the moment. That doesn't mean it's a permanent situation, incapable of improving, but thinking about it made me wonder what the root cause could be. Sure, we have seen a clown chosen as the leader of the free world, engaged in a pissing contest with anyone and everyone - but this can't be the root cause. It's more of a symptom, I think. In pondering this, two possible factors spring to mind. I haven't done any deep analysis, or ruled out that there could be many issues involved, but I just thought I'd suggest these couple of things as possible contributing factors:

1. The rise of meism
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When I was young, the heroes we learned about in school were those who did great works for others. People like King, Gandhi, Pasteur, Curie, etc. Today, it's more likely to be some multibillionaire business tycoon or sporting star or obnoxious child musician who has created a massive empire essentially for their own advancement. It was once considered important to be nice, respectful, tolerant, etc, and to treat our fellow humans well. Now, it's about how in-your-face someone can be. Granted, there were serious breaches of all those things, but for decades we seemed to be improving. Now it's back to being all about self-empowerment, standing up for our rights, and the importance of me. The difference is that today, by and large, it's not genuinely oppressed people who are doing the kicking back - it's those who lead privileged lives, but not as full of entitlement as they'd like.

It's this meism that leads us to believe that we must be given massive personal and corporate tax cuts, at the expense of having decent hospitals and schools. That tells me my right to cater to my fear and insecurity by owning an arsenal of weapons is more important than the right of innocent people to live in safety because the government wants to pass sensible gun ownership laws. On the other side of the spectrum (an endeavour to show some balance), it is also what says that the very act of bringing a child into this world automatically places the world at my beck and call, and the rest of society must bend over backwards to facilitate providing everything my offspring need and desire. Once upon a time that was my job. It goes without saying I also have the right to do nothing productive every day and expect that society will provide me with everything I need.

And of course, anyone who has ever heard the POTUS open his mouth knows that all that consumes his every waking moment has to do with "me". Somewhere along the way our collective vision seems to have shifted to become far more self-focused. Could it be that we were somehow more at peace with the world when our focus was more on others, and less on ourselves?

2. The abandonment of critical thinking
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I think this is entwined with point one. One of the rights to which I'm entitled appears to be the right to believe absolutely anything that takes my fancy, with zero evidence or reason. Are things not right with my world because the seven chakras are blocking energy, and causing my aura to go from silver to baby-pooh brown? Is the government broadcasting subliminal signals over the airwaves to achieve mind control of the masses? Is the world going to crap because of the alignment of Jupiter (which has less gravitational effect on me than the fly crawling up the wall of this room) and Mars?

The idea of accepting things by "faith" - i.e. because we choose to believe them, rather than there being any actual evidence, is a road to perdition.

Sandy Hook is a media fabrication? Of course it is, it doesn't suit my guns-for-everyone agenda at all. Donald Trump might appear to be a petulant, self-absorbed megalomaniac, but in actual fact he's a divinely appointed agent for change and nemesis of the Luciferans. Speaking of which, don't listen to those satanically-controlled liberal media types. If you see anything which appears to present a case that doesn't align with my gun-toting, trickle-down-economics-driven, conservative Christian view of the world, it's obviously fake news.

Forget whether there is any actual proof of some particular claim made by someone with a YouTube following bigger than their IQ. Does it fit in with my preconceived agenda? It's in! Don't like what the facts suggest? Grab yourself a handful of alternative facts.

Carl Sagan, in his brilliant book Demon Haunted World, suggests we each need to assemble a "baloney detection kit" that we can use to filter what we hear, with a view to deciding what is true and untrue.

What skeptical thinking boils down to is the means to construct, and to understand, a reasoned argument and -especially important- to recognize a fallacious or fraudulent argument. The question is not whether we like the conclusion that emerges out of a train of reasoning, but whether the conclusion follows from the premise or starting point and whether that premise is true.

For those who can't afford to buy, or aren't inclined to read, the whole book, the relevant chapter is reproduced here:

http://www.inf.fu-berlin.de/lehre/pmo/eng/Sagan-Baloney.pdf


If only as individuals and as a collective we could spend less time trying to fit the facts so they support our preconceived notions, dogmas and ideologies and work at understanding what is really going on around us, perhaps things would start making more sense.



michaelcahill
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 27, 2017 05:04 PM
I couldn't agree more and I believe you've stated it beautifully.

I'd add dishonesty, including hypocrisy, to the mix. It's clear that much of what is thrown forth as faith is simply a convenience and not real faith at all. For instance the outrage over Bill Clinton's White House escapades. It's clear there was not true outrage but only a political convenience involved. THAT is why they are quick to endorse a child molester for the Senate. It isn't about the moral issue. It is about the MEISM you point out. Roy Moore could be (and may be) Satan himself, and he'd still be in the race. It serves THEIR PURPOSE.

Don't like the argument that defeats your position? Call upon faith beyond anyone's understanding to counter.

It all ties in together with what you put forth.


Gloria ....
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 27, 2017 08:41 PM
Craig, I am going to get this book as it makes incredibly good sense. I outtake the following section from the chapter, The Fine Art of Baloney Detection to ask a question regarding Judge Moore.

In our time we have less severe standards. We tell children about Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy for reasons we think emotionally sound, but then disabuse them of these myths before they?re grown. Why retract? Because their well-being as adults depends on them knowing the world as it really is. We worry, and for good reason, about adults who still believe in Santa Claus. On doctrinaire religions, ?Men dare not avow, even to their own hearts," wrote the philosopher David Hume, the doubts which they entertain on such subjects. They make a merit of implicit faith; and disguise to themselves their real infidelity, by the strongest asseverations and the most positive bigotry. This infidelity has profound moral consequences, as the American revolutionary Tom Paine wrote in The Age of Reason: Infidelity does not consist in believing, or in disbelieving; it consists in professing to believe what one does not believe. It is impossible to calculate the moral mischief, if I may so express it, that mental lying has produced in society. When man has so far corrupted and prostituted the chastity of his mind, as to subscribe his professional belief to things he does not believe, he has prepared himself for the commission of every other crime.

As this relates to Judge Roy Moore, and I think it's important we remember that his designation of "judge" gives him the authority to preside in judgement over other people. Judge is a place of honour and those who occupy the position should be held to a very high standard of behaviour. Regarding the moral dilemma he's in right now, where it's alleged he is continually lying and bearing false witness against many, many people, it seems he drags many others down with him.

So Judge Moore, as a Christian who believes in Hell, has every right to sin through deceit and to spend eternity in Hell. The choice has been presented and he made his choice. My question is, what about all the people who support him and believe him? Does Moore have the right to make that choice for them? If they believe a liar and a child molester do they also go to Hell for having blindly believed him without question? If they do, is Moore judged by God as having willfully led all these people astray and the Judge pays for their sins too? Or, are these folks sinning by their own free will because they have corrupted and prostituted the chastity of their own minds and therefore they will answer for their own sins? Or how does this work?


michaelcahill
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 28, 2017 02:00 AM
Everyone is responsible for THEIR own actions and beliefs. Roy Moore is responsible for himself and his despicable behavior. People who support him have free will according to their own so-called faith or belief system. So it is solely their responsibility if they support him and THEIR despicable behavior to do so. If they believe there's a hell, then they have chosen to spend eternity there with him. HE has NOTHING to do with it.

All of these terms, faith, love, hope etc. need a context and don't stand by themselves as an answer to anything. Faith? Faith in what? Faith that any despicable act a man performs is okay because he claims to be a Christian is okay? If that is your "Faith", then your faith is shit.

A vote for Moore is your statement that you would be fine with bringing your fourteen-year-old daughter to his house to rub his cock. That is exactly what SUPPORT for him means.


Gloria ....
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 28, 2017 02:18 AM
I was basing my question on the assumption the folks voting for Moore believe the allegations are a 100% Soros funded smear campaign. And that the allegations are malicious lies, false attacks, which reflect the immorality of our time coming from the DC swamp that refuses to acknowledge and uphold the US Constitution. They firmly believe God is moving in mighty ways and God is sending warnings/messages from some very anointed prophets such as Moore and Revelations 12.

Moore denies having ever met ANY of the women anywhere. So if these folks believe these lies and Moore knows the truth and most certainly God does too, if the allegations are true will God punish the people who were fooled by Moore's lies?


michaelcahill
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 28, 2017 02:23 AM
I don't believe God involves himself in such a way personally.

I don't believe that these people, the majority of them, believe Moore either. I believe they are voting to stick ANY Republican in there to further their and THEIR CHURCHES agenda.

I would say, according the THEIR beliefs, yep, they're all going to hell, punished by the Almighty.

It would be nice if ONE of them had the fearless courage they claim to have to stand up here and offer an answer and speak for themselves.


Gloria ....
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 28, 2017 02:35 AM << Modifed November 28 at 2:37AM >>
That makes sense, so they are all going to hell according to their own religion? My land!! I wonder how they justify their lies and assault? So do they believe in God and the Bible or not?

I suppose a little Tax gift to the Religious Right could be a little bargaining chip to grease their palms.

I guess it's true what TH Huxley wrote, The foundation of morality is to give up pretending to believe that for which there is no evidence, and repeating unintelligible propositions about things beyond the possibilities of knowledge.


michaelcahill
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 28, 2017 02:39 AM
It does relieve one of the responsibility of intelligent response. :))

Ahhhhh .... yes, there's that sweet money thang. Of course, that has NOTHING to do with the beautiful faith based support of the Holy Judge Roy Moore and his love of "purity".


Gloria ....
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 28, 2017 02:50 AM
So what do they think they're going to get out of this? More money?


michaelcahill
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RE: There is Sure to be Backlash
Reply on November 28, 2017 03:08 AM << Modifed November 28 at 3:10AM >>
They are DELUDED. That's a HUGE part of the equation. These poor and lower middle class folk BELIEVE that they are the benefactors of these "good" Christian Republican champions of the little guys.

The extraordinary power of a minister in a pulpit preaching to a church full of believers cannot be underestimated. These are amazing charismatic speakers. They are masters at what they do and convincing is an understatement. They know the words to use to couch whatever agenda they may have in the perfect package to elicit support ... fanatic FAITH driven support. These are people who drink poisoned Kool-aid or kill themselves to ride on a spaceship to the Hale-Bop comet to God.

My belief is that humans are herd animals instinctually. That is why we're so reasonable one and one and lose our sense when we're a crowd.

There's a sense of community at my little church, all for one and one for all. It's genuine too. But we're all poor and have nice values going. Our pastor talks about love and helping each other. He's not coercing us to vote for Trump, the representative of God etc.

Oh well, all Christians obviously don't interpret the "manual" the same way. :))

   
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