Sun Jun 29, 2014, 10:04 PM
RainDog (28,784 posts)
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The fastest growing religious trend in the nation is "not any" - or belief in no one's doctrine. Some of those within this group state they have spiritual beliefs, but they do not align with any church.
The reason for the growth in this group seems to stem from the 1980 takeover of the Republican Party by the religious right. Those who were coming of age at that time have since raised children - and the children of Americans who were born when the religious right was throwing around their power comprise the least religious group in the United States.
While religious believers were crowing about their importance to the family, many families took one look at them and said, "No thank you. I'll raise my child to reject your political and religious beliefs."
The religious right has continued to exert enormous influence over American political life. The outcome of religious involvement in politics has been the creation of generations who want nothing to do with religion, while some are plenty interested in politics, especially in opposition to the religious right.
This bodes well for American economic policy changes. Back in the dark, dark ages, McCarthy, and, along with him, the religious right, attacked anyone who supported social policies to address wealth disparity. To this day, religious right wingers foam at the mouth at the mention of social democracy (I've seen it from some o.f. talking about Canada's ssssssocialist health care policy...)
The opposition to social democratic reform has long come from the religious right. Those who reject religious doctrine, on the other hand, can look at policy issues dispassionately. They can look at the reality that social democracies have greater social mobility than the U.S.
One reason they have greater social mobility is because social democracies do not have the depth of poverty that is allowed in the U.S. as a "good christian nation." Those Marxists, Pope Francis noted, took ideas from the Beatitudes. But they did more than spout the words. They created policy that made wealth taxation possible, and this social safety net created the means by which the poor could escape from poverty.
Americans would prefer a nation that is arranged like social democracies. They just deny how this is achieved because the Republican Party, and the religious right that undergirds it, has lied to their congregants/voters for DECADES about the way such mobility and greater equality are achieved.
These goals are achieved by taxation on wealth that goes to fund healthcare and education (from preschool to the university), that guarantees a living wage in a job, and that reserves the right to nationalize industries on behalf of the citizens of those nations in the event of something like the international banking crisis of 2007/8.
Those who prefer no religion don't come with the built in bias of the older "hrmph, godless commies" of the older generations. Even when pollsters use the "scare word" socialism, the voters who are looking for a party now, as they develop a political conscience, approve of socialism more than capitalism.
As the link a couple of paragraphs above notes, when pollsters don't use scare words, but just ask how they would like wealth to be distributed, the overwhelming marjority approves of "socialism" as part of economic policy.
The sad thing is that the media in the U.S. has conspired with the religious right and corporate conservatives to deny knowledge to the public of how deep the divide is between the wealthy and everyone else...and, beyond that, the divide between the middle class and the poor. When the media work to keep Americans ignorant about the outcome of economic policies, you have to assume their loyalty is to who writes their checks, not to the truth.
The truth is that Americans have rejected the Republican Party, and they want a political party that will represent their economic interests. The group that will make this come to pass are those who are not restricted by religious fears. Those voters are our future.
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