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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-02-05 03:41 PM
Original message
Five Key Features of Democracy - and How We Lost Them
Five Key Features of Democracy - and How We Lost Them
by arendt

Religious fanaticism has blighted human existence since consciousness and
spirituality arose, intertwined, from the pre-conscious mind. For millenia,
decent, productive people in the Western world stumbled through a nightmare
of torture, execution, martyrdom, inquisition, and the self-mutilating folly of
anti-intellectualism.

It was only with the rise of scientific/rational thought that the concept of Separation
of Church and State (SCS) freed European civilization from the scourge of corrupt,
homosocial theocracies. In the new light of SCS, one might even argue that Jesus'
"render unto Caesar" parable was an endorsement of SCS.

Today's citizens of Enlightenment democracies take for granted the effectiveness
of SCS as much as we take for granted the effectiveness of anti-biotics in protecting
us from baterial infections. In our lifetimes in our relatively sane societies, we have
never seen the especially resilient carbuncles of theocratic ignorance and chosen-people
bigotry. Granted, we have been ignorant and bigoted. But, in a rational society, once these
things are exposed; they cannot continue to stand unchanged.

In America though, we seem to have an encountered a strain of SCS-resistant
theocracy that could rapidly prove fatal to our rational democracy. We are way beyond
abortion clinic bombers, Promise Keeper rallies, and other relatively managable problems.
Our new symptoms are serious and rapidly escalating: evangelical hazing at the Air Force
Academy; General Boykin announcing to the Moslems "our god is bigger than yours";
George W. Bush endorsing creation science, appointing fundamentalist crackpots to women's
health panels, and tearing down SCS from within by stealth theocrat judicial appointments
and transparently illegal faith-based initiatives.

The perception that this theocratic threat appeared suddenly is false. That mistake occurred
because hubris is not limited to accomplishments in science or engineering. We ought to rename
Liberalism to Hubrism for its triumphalism even as the corporate/theocrat backlash cut it off
at the knees. Christian fundamentalism began with 19th century rejection of equality, scientific
explanation, and evolution. (No, Virginia, fundamentalism has little to do with the mileau of Jesus.)
It was pushed to the margins of society in the first half of the 20th century.

It was at that point that most rational people congratulated themselves on their permanent
victory over ignorance and moved on. That was their big mistake. Left unmolested in the backwaters
of a huge continent, religious fanatics were thrown together with unrepentant racists, economic
cranks, Red-baiters, women-haters, homophobes, and other types that think with their emotions -
primarily hatred, envy, and revenge. An unholy hybridization occurred in these deprived environments.
In ways similar to the way cancer cells use natural selection to increase their virulence in the toxic
environment of under-vascularized tumors, or the way bacteria share drug-resistance genes
by exchanging plasmids, a new mass psychology of fanaticism emerged, containing the ugliest
features from the witches' brew of its founding ideologies.

In fact, the likelihood of such an ideological super-bug forming by chance is about the same
as an avalanche in the Himalyas constructing a replica of the Taj Mahal. That is, next to zero.
We must conclude that the coat of viral ideas, corporate fronts, and lobbyists that protects the
core dogmas of authoritarianism, aristocracy, misogyny, chosen-people-ism, anti-intellectualism,
and insatiable greed was engineered. We are facing a carefully engineered religious virus tailored
to the weaknesses of its target, the American Republic today.

This virus was injected into its victim by the worst scum cashiered from the morally-bankrupt Nixon
administration and from the CIA after the Church hearings, allied with sociopathic religious cult empire-
builders like the Reverend Moon - a man who paid George H.W. Bush to give speeches in South America
and bailed out the hate-mongering enterprises of Jerry Falwell. This whole exercise in Joseph Campbell-
style myth-making was bankrolled by the unendable anti-Communist/anti-union crusade that brought
wealth and power to the Military Industrial Complex. That crusade has now morphed into the unendable
war on terror. Same game, same players, new name.

What, exactly, are the exploited weaknesses of the barely-recognizable American government today? I see at least five
key features of massive leverage that allowed a tiny group of people to wreck a government that was serving over
300,000,000 people better than any comparable organization:

1) Transparency in Government
Lost due to the inability to expose and control the ever-growing black budgets and black ops of the intelligence
community, which inevitably and increasingly impinge upon Americans' liberties at home.

2) Freedom of Speech and of the Press
Lost due to the unwillingness to prevent the corporate takeover of the mass media by conglomeration , thereby
knocking out one of the main beams of a popular democracy - an informed electorate.

3) Freedom of Religion
Lost due to the unwillingess to investigate whether a religion is nothing more than a cover for otherwise illegal activity
activity (like Rev Moon's conviction for racketeering), culminating in a refusal to remove tax-free status for the most
flagrant politicing with church resources. (Phony religions have "no redeeming spiritual value", but a whole lot of
"redeeming political value".) Also lost due to the unwillingness to shutdown violence and incitements to violence
emanating from religious movements organized like revoultionary cells.

4) Impartial Courts - a nation of laws, not men.
Lost due to the failure to stand up to slow-motion court-packing and Executive Agency corruption by the GOP over
a 20 year period.

5) An honest and transparent voting process
Lost due to the failure to prosecute partisan bias and rampant corruption in the election process: infamous state
election commissioner/GOP operatives in Florida and Ohio; a judicial coup d'etat in the year 2000; and the
privatization and veiling of the voting process by companies owned by GOP theocrats and thugs.

These key features form the core of popular democracy: access to accurate information, the ability to disseminate accurate
information, the ability to hold unpopular positions based on that information, the guarantee of a fair voting process, and
access to a fair and impartial precedent-abiding judicial system. With all these components functioning, blind fanaticism is
stopped in its tracks. It is discovered, exposed, and voted out or sued out of political and economic power.

But, the viral engineers have targetted those five key features and, in a form of political jiu-jitsu, used them as entry
points to gain access to the machinery of government while disabling any defensive response. Just as a virus goes
straight to the nucleus of an infected cell and jams the main protein making machinery, substituting machinery that
responds only to viral commands, the political virus of fanaticism places its agents in positions of power (such as
inside the intelligence community, or inside the corporate media, or inside a phony religious front organization, or
on a packed Federal court, or in a supposedly-impartial election board), and those agents respond only to commands
from the fanatics.

Now when you take these five features away, ask yourself if what remains is really a democracy. I submit you will
find a one-party state where "power comes from the barrel of a gun", crucial facts and decisions are hidden behind
a stonewall of secrecy, and an unaccountable elite treats the nation's resources as its private treasury and dishes out
payoffs to its buddies and punishment to its enemies without regard to fairness or evidence.

America is no longer a republic; it is a one-party state where anyone who disagrees is ignored or run over. If they
are troublesome but obscure, they may be "rendered" to a foreign government for interrogation. If they are troublesome
and powerful, an airplane accident may occur. (Assasinations are out of vogue because they lend themselves too easily
to "conspiracy theories".) If they are troublesome and popular, a smear campaign will commence. And, most Americans
will find this all boring or irrelevant or a conspiracy theory. Mass media is the most powerful drug I have ever seen. If the
rest of the civilized world intends to survive, its first act of self-defense must be to regulate media conglomeration more
tightly than cocaine dealership.

I write this with little hope for America, except that it may serve as the premier bad example of the most recently
evolved member of the species of religious fanaticism - corporate Christianity. What little hope I have for the survival
of rationality rests with the fact that, except for religious fanatics, human beings want to live with the least possible
conflict in the most sensible way they can comprehend.

The world will stop the fundamentalist monster that has hijacked America or the world itself will be killed - by
climate change, by environmental pollution, by resource depletion, or by insane fanatics with visions of nuclear
Armageddon. The fact that America will have to be brought low to save the world is a conclusion that events are
forcing upon me. We seem unable to save ourselves, no matter how outrageous the lies, corruption, and mayhem
inflicted upon us by the Bush Cabal. Given that Peak Oil is upon us, America seems about to go the way of Imperial
Spain after the New World gold ran out.

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wli Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-02-05 03:49 PM
Response to Original message
1. bedtime for democracy
It's over. Now I just need to get my SO to emigrate with me before I get offshored.
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-02-05 04:53 PM
Response to Original message
2. Front-page kick n/t
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KansDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-02-05 05:23 PM
Response to Original message
3. Kick and recommended
:dem:
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Uncle Joe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-02-05 05:29 PM
Response to Original message
4. Kicked and Recommended
:kick:
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annabanana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-02-05 06:43 PM
Response to Original message
5. Brilliant.... thank you.. n/t
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Fovea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-02-05 10:02 PM
Response to Original message
6. very well done!
You honor your namesake.
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Pachamama Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 12:43 AM
Response to Original message
7. Damn that was good!
What are you Arendt, a Harvard or an MIT guy? :shrug:

Wow...I liked that one...well researched, well put...

And unfortunately, sadly and frighteningly accurate....

The Pachapapa and I are in the process of selling off many of our properties, cashing out, down sizing on a house and buying property overseas....I never knew when I had conversations with my now deceased Grandparents who escaped Nazi Germany, that it would be coming to this, not in my lifetime....
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eridani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 01:08 AM
Response to Original message
8. The Spain:gold, America: oil analogy is dead on n/t
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 08:24 AM
Response to Reply #8
11. In more ways than one...
Read any of Kevin Philips' books on Wealth and Democracy.
He gives historical examples of the pathology of empire:
Spain, England, and now America.

Like Spain, we have become a bunch of hypocritical religious fanatics.
Like Spain, when the gold ran out, we borrowed to live beyond our means.
Like Spain, we had control of so much of the civilized world that
we scared everyone who feared us into cooperating against us.
Like Spain, our leadership is pig-headed, arrogant, and consumed
with "manly" virtues.
Like Spain, we are driving intellectuals and productive people
(like Chinese and Indian immigrants) to leave the country.

arendt
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prairierose Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 02:03 AM
Response to Original message
9. A gem as usual, Arendt...
thanks, a kick and a recommendation.

:kick:
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Festivito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 08:11 AM
Response to Original message
10. Love your five, but not all fanatisism is bad.
Those five fall under our waning establishment of justice. Justice now falls to "the rule of law." The rule of law stems from our hubris that our combined efforts in this nation to refine laws somehow become something more eminent than our feeling of justice in spite of our admission of imperfection. Those who hold the rule of law above justice seem fanatical to me. And, I don't like it.

As much as SCS might have freed us, it is religion that held intellectualism through our darker ages. Those holders were fanatics of their day. And, I like them.

You're right about your five points, but you also seem to be beating on the people and ideas that could very well support you if the same facts were known that you know.
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 08:37 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. Please define "fanaticism", or is it like "justice"?
> Those who hold the rule of law above justice seem fanatical to me. > And, I don't like it.

Sorry, wrong answer. The rule of law is definable, justice is not.
One man's "justice" is another man's "tyranny".

By definition, fanaticism is unchanging in its assumptions. The rule
of law acknowledges it can be incomplete or even wrong. You are
playing word games to say that admission of imperfection is fanaticism.

> As much as SCS might have freed us, it is religion that held
> intellectualism through our darker ages. Those holders were
> fanatics of their day. And, I like them.
I really suggest you get the dictionary definition of fanaticism.

First, religion caused the Dark Ages. To say that religion saved
intellectualism is to ignore "the beam in its own eye".

If anyone "held intellectualism", it was peaceful Irish monks (see
"How the Irish Saved Civilization") who were originally of the Arian
heresy common among the barbarians in that part of the world.

To call them fanatics is another twisting of the word. They were
just ordinary people who were lucky enough to be in an out of the
way place while all hell was breaking loose on the Continent.

Why don't you give me a definition of fanatic?

arendt


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Festivito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 11:12 AM
Response to Reply #12
17. LIKE? I can't even grapple with that question.
Justice may not be objectively definable, however, justice remains the first designated establishment of America's Constitution. And, yes, good ideas can lead to tyranny. But, that should never stop us from holding good ideas.

Fanaticism is unreasonable zeal. A reasonable man might see his reason clearly and hold it with great zeal, and yet he seems unreasonable to another and thus appears a fanatic. So, someone who seems irredeemably fanatical, might, someday turn to agree with us. It's just human.

People might not change their assumptions with good reason. They don't seem fanatical to me.

How does the rule of law acknowledge its wrongness and/or incompleteness? I see this rule of law becoming less and less acknowledging of its possible inperfection, rather, it becomes more confident bringing us mandatory minimums that override human justice looking at each individual case.

As to religion's part in the Dark Ages, I cannot argue history -- not my fort. I do say, that from language, to religion, to paper, to whatever good idea, all can be misused for greed. The same religion used by some to enter us into darker times might well have also helped us out of those times, just as paper used to promote Nazi propaganda was used elsewhere to call others to arms in order to stop the Nazis.

Too bad that we don't live close. This might make a wonderful Saturday afternoon.
-Fes
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 03:14 PM
Response to Reply #17
20. Then let me take a whack at it.
Edited on Wed Aug-03-05 03:15 PM by arendt
> This might make a wonderful Saturday afternoon.

This response is in that spirit.

----

> Justice may not be objectively definable...

It is not like you are the first person to ever have this
issue. Famous philosophers have wrestled with it:

"Of what we cannot speak we must remain silent." L. Wittgenstein

It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt.
Voltaire

Rational discourse is grounded in fact; and the cornerstone of
fact is reproducibility (i.e., objectivity). Someone can verify
your fact. Otherwise anything you can say, goes.

Laws, like theories of physical science, are approximations to
or abstractions of a larger reality that is way too complex
to make explicit.

I don't deny the validity of your subjective feelings as
motivation to you. I simply say that you cannot make laws
by taking polls of everyone's subjective feelings on every
action that comes before the legal system. It would be
beyond tedious. It would be impossible, unworkable. It would
be the legal equivaent of calculating how two billiard balls
collide by integrating the forces over all the atomic bonds
in the two balls.

The essence of thinking is to create reproducible abstractions
that model a reproducible external reality. That is how we
get laws - the best approximation we can manage within the
limits of the resources we are willing to devote to approaching
the assymptotic limit of "justice". Your justice is like the
speed of light - we can get close to it, but never reach it.

> Fanaticism is unreasonable zeal. A reasonable man might see his
> reason clearly and hold it with great zeal, and yet he seems
> unreasonable to another and thus appears a fanatic. So, someone who
> seems irredeemably fanatical, might, someday turn to agree with us.
> It's just human.

Dictionary definition of "fanatical":

(from Latin fanaticus: inspired by a deity, frenzied, from fanum: temple)
marked by excessive enthusiasm and often intense uncritical
devotion.

You left out the apart about "uncritical devotion". It is not the
zeal of fanatics that scares me; it is the mindless, unthinking,
irrefutableness of their zeal.

"Fear prophets, Adso, and those prepared to die for the truth,
for as a rule they make many others die with them, often before
them, at times instead of them."

- Umberto Eco, "The Name of the Rose"

> How does the rule of law acknowledge its wrongness and/or
> incompleteness? I see this rule of law becoming less and less
> acknowledging of its possible inperfection, rather, it becomes more
> confident bringing us mandatory minimums that override human
> justice looking at each individual case.

Mandatory minimums are a perversion of the law. Even the judges
and prosecutors say so. As I said above, we recognize the law
is imperfect, which is why we *used to* give judges some
discretion and why we *used to* allow prosecutors to plea
bargain with wider latitude. Specific judges, familiar with
specific cases can call upon their larger, implicit sense of
"justice" (your sense) as long as they aren't creating major
new precedents (except the Supremes).

Now the fundies have used that discretion to bash "judicial
activism", so we are reduced the crudest approximation of justice -
the one that requires the minimum amount of thinking and the
maximum amount of punishment.

You can't stick reactionary clothes on the rule of law, and
hold that strawman up to me.

----

That felt like the old internet, circa 1990 - a lot of philosophical
jawing that most lumnpenproletariat today would find pompous and
elitist.

arendt
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nashville_brook Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 09:19 AM
Response to Original message
13. this is not a call to despair -- no bedtime for democracy
it's a wake up call.

knowing the definitions and terms of the problem proves that we are emerging from the fog.

lets not be Eeyores. we have the power of truth and justice behind us. let this change you, so you may change the world. even if it is only in your little house, on your little street, in your little town. be changed. wake up. and fight.
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 09:42 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. Optimism is appreciated
But realism is necessary.

We are down to fighting for basic preconditions for
a functioning democracy. At this point, energy spent
fighting for *anything* else cannot be afforded.
We need to put aside most of our well-intentioned
progressive causes and fight for our very lives.

I started this essay as just another rant about
fundamentalism. But, when I examined their tactics
I realized how they had gone straight for the
throat of democracy.

You may say that "knowing the terms of the problem"
is progress. Yeah, like acknowledging your trapped
in a room with a serial killer is better than denial.

In such a situation, you drop everything else and
find any ally you can. If progressives can admit
their mortal peril, and focus on nothing more than
re-establishing a functioning democracy, we can
make common cause with disgusted true conservatives,
with genuinely patriotic members of the military,
intelligence, and diplomatic corps. I am afraid
we have to write off the corporations. The
corporate charter calls any human compassion
a theft of shareholder value.

arendt
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Karenina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 10:29 AM
Response to Reply #14
16. Repeat
"The corporate charter calls any human compassion a theft of shareholder value."

Another gem, Arendt! :loveya:
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nashville_brook Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 11:26 AM
Response to Reply #14
18. if realism is necessary (and when is it not) :)
Edited on Wed Aug-03-05 11:27 AM by nashville_brook
then knowing the guy next to you is hanibal lector is valuable info and the whole arc of the narrative. it's more than half the movie. denoument. the gig is up. i'm not giddy. i'm realistic from my POV. might there be an epic battle to the end? might there be twists? unexpected alliances.

yes, yes and yes. but the movie is almost over and our butts are starting to ache. lets DO THIS.

what is everyone willing to do? this is what i did most recently and why -- and boy did it feel good. time for everyone to get free -- you can fucking do it.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

(what you say about corporations goes to the heart of it.) enjoy.
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electropop Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 11:39 AM
Response to Reply #13
19. Right!
The essay is wonderfully written, but I disagree with the conclusion. What will be brought low is the Bushitler regime, and with it their corporate Christian fascist dogma. Fitzgerald's good work is exposing more and more crimes and criminals daily, while the public's opinion of Bushitler and the pukes in general, is plummeting toward zero percent approval. This will not stand.

Remember how bad it looked, just a year or so before Nixon was taken out.
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 10:26 AM
Response to Original message
15. front page kick n/t
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aspberger Donating Member (230 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 03:44 PM
Response to Original message
21. a little Mein Kampfian in style
but on target. The smear campaigns on champions like Hillary are true.
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 04:02 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. Never read that POS...
If my style resembles his, please shoot me.

Could you please rephrase your style comment for someone
who hasn't read Adolf's ravings.

arendt
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Wizard777 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 04:46 PM
Response to Original message
23. YOU ARE WRONG ON THREE. IT'S EVEN UNCONSTITUTIONAL!
KEEP YOUR LAWS OFF MY RELIGIOUS BELIEFS!

If I obey your laws I can avoid your prision. But if obeying your laws causes me to live in evil's way. I do to a place far worse than even the worse prision controled by the worst masochistic dictator. The intent of the first ammendment is that when the laws of God and man conflict. You have the freedon to chose to follow the laws of or the laws of God. You cannot be punished for obeying God. The whole purpose of the first ammedment is to prevent Washington DC from Controling the Government and the church. As we have seen with the pedophile scanfal that has rocked the Catholic Church. When the church fails it's flock and even seeks to harm them. The people must be able to turn to the government for protection. As we have seen with the Bush Administration. When the government fails and even seeks to harm people. They must be able to turn to the church for guidance.
I can only assume that you have never had to live with the FEAR of being arrested for practising your religion. I have and the worst part is that I have lived in AMERICA my entire life. There are sacrament of my religion that have been declared illegal to posses here in America in 1970 Controled Dangerous Substances Act. The penalties that I can incur for my communions with God can range from probation on a first offense (convert now!)To life without possiblity of parole (We feel that you will never convert.) I can freely share the concepts and philosphies of my religion. But I cannot share the ritial practises without FEAR of arrest. Am I using my religion to shield what could be called criminal activity as deemed by Congress in 1970? That depends entirely upon which calender you go by. Some say my religion was founded 700 BC at the absolute earliest. It can also be said that to date my religion is 7,000 years old. Is it a massive conspiracu through out time and memorial? No. Now this Johnny come latelty nation America, barely over 200 years old is wise enough to judge the manu ways of the Creator of Wisdom?

On a side note. The Controled Dangerous Substances Act of 1970 also declares the very subtance of our Forefathers Constitution to be dangerous with no uses in America and illegal to posses. So actually your Goverment is more danger than my Church. Your Goverment as defined by the Constitution relies upon you for it's defense. My Church relies upon God for our defense. God has destroyed more powerful nations than America in the defense of his Children. So don't worry about me. I'm more concerned about America. It's my home and I love it. But never more than I love God. No law you pass will ever change that. Freedom of religion is preserved by freedom from religion.
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 05:07 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. Can you read? I said we lost Frdm of Religion, not I want to take it away.
Edited on Wed Aug-03-05 05:13 PM by arendt
I said:
3) Freedom of Religion
Lost due to the unwillingess to investigate whether a religion is nothing more than a cover for otherwise illegal activity
activity (like Rev Moon's conviction for racketeering), culminating in a refusal to remove tax-free status for the most
flagrant politicing with church resources. (Phony religions have "no redeeming spiritual value", but a whole lot of
"redeeming political value".) Also lost due to the unwillingness to shutdown violence and incitements to violence
emanating from religious movements organized like revoultionary cells.

I said *nothing more than* a cover. There are legitimate religions
(Amero-Indian, Rasta) that can show historically that their generally
illegal practices are truly part of their religion.

> The intent of the first ammendment is that when the laws of God and
> man conflict. You have the freedon to chose to follow the laws of
> or the laws of God.

Absoloute rubbish. By your standards, David Koresh had first
amendment rights to shoot ATF agents for interfering with his
religion (multiple wives, child abuse, and all).

You take the law in your own hands at your own risk. Until the
fundies started, we have not had major fights over "religious
persecution" in this country. We had an anti-Semitism problem,
and a (well-deserved) anti-Catholic bias (due to their overbearing
demands that we should fund their parochial schools).

Prior to the Neocons, the US laws were not morally offensive to
all but a tiny and self-marginalized minority, like the Jehovah's
Witnesses.

> There are sacrament of my religion that have been declared illegal
> to posses here in America in 1970 Controled Dangerous Substances Act.

Do you think you are the only person who thinks the War on Drugs
is a stupid, counterproductive, police-state tactic? I don't need
a god to tell me that.

Did you notice many homosexuals in the 1950s getting away with
what they did by appealing to their religion and their god? You
won't either.

There is too much religious mumbo-jumbo in your rant. Too much
unwillingness to fight within the system. Too much sanctimony
over a provocative and marginal position. If you say god wants
you to smoke dope, why can't some fundie nut case say that dope
is the devil's work and we should kill all the dope-heads?

----

Thanks for the wonderful example of how most Americans don't
really understand the Rule of Law as laid out by our Founding
Fathers.

arendt
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Wizard777 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 10:54 PM
Response to Reply #24
28. Yes you do want to want to take it away and worse.
You want to try to prevent the establishment of God's new religions. Your freedom of religion begins and ends with what YOU believe. Anything else can only serve to venture into and then deprive others of their freedom of religion.

:dunce: So please explain to me O' enlightened one. The freedom of religion in the Salem witch trials. That was Mass. Law. They used the Malius Malificarum for the tribunal. It was the authoratative intellectual heights of it's day. Now the Roman Catholic Church
has officially declared the malius malificarum to be the most evil document ever penned. We are now fighting a war against the church of Islam under the guises of a war on terror. The fact all the enemies are muslim is just a coincidence. Randal bin Terry incites his fanatical followers to gun down abortion doctors, blow up abortion clinics, and pass bills of attainder. Is there a worldwide manhunt for him? Of course not! When that terrorist is not at the White House he's at the RNC. I don't think you understand how both church and state parallel issues and then confuse them to create morals laws. Which are religious laws that have no place upon America's books.


Now I'm going to tell you what my religion is. I am Mazdian. This is the foundation of monotheism. If you cannot accept new religions then you invalidate Judeaism, Christianity, and Islam. Futher more I am the Magus Amathion Magister Templi of the Ilm-i-Khshnoom. This is also the foundation of the concept of freedom of religion. The Magi have carried this conept throught out time, this world, and many branches of the Ilm-i-Khshnoom. The Illuminati of Bavaria and even the Masons. You know our Forefathers better than I. So tell me this. What items were burried with General and President George Washington and where upon his person where they were placed? O' enlightened one please tell me what I do not know about our Forefathers. :rofl:

Perhaps you would like try to tell me what I do not know about Customary Law? Maybe British Common Law?
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-04-05 07:13 AM
Response to Reply #28
29. If you can find a country where you are "persecuted" less than here...
tell me about it.

Otherwise, you are baying at the moon. Destructive criticism with
no alternative offered.

Besides, your examples are irrelevant to my argument.

I never claimed the law was perfect. I admitted it was imperfect.
Your rant has nothing to do with my essay.

Goodbye.
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Sentath Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 06:14 PM
Response to Original message
25. Good Gosh this is a chewy thread
A quick criticism of the original, since I'm having trouble getting through the rest of the thread.

Para's 6 & 7 are in direct conflict. The error is the same one that the Intelligent Design fans make.

This is not to say that the portion of the population with fascistic tendencies didn't immediately climb in and subvert these naturally occurring memes to bring them more power...
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arendt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 08:17 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. You must believe in the tooth fairy, too :-)
Edited on Wed Aug-03-05 08:20 PM by arendt
Let's see, a bunch of otherworldly, marginal people are
magically organized, disciplined, and have ideas fed to
them by the hundreds of think tanks set up by the far
right in the 1970s...

...and you can't find the designer of the toxic slogans we
are all drowning in.

There is no comparison to ID.

Intelligent design is about how life arose from nothing on
the scale of non-sentient atoms.

The Fundie network is about how the big money rich organized
the masses into impoverishing themselves and giving away
their civil rights on the scale of nation states full of conscious
humans.

You are comparing apples and oranges. And you are whistling
past the graveyard if you think this just happened.

Hannah Arendt has a whole chapter entitled "The Temporary
Alliance between the Mob and the Elite". It is like a blueprint
for what has been done in America.

arendt
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GoneOffShore Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-03-05 09:20 PM
Response to Original message
27. Let's kick this back up
Excellent essay!
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Karenina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-04-05 09:30 AM
Response to Reply #27
30. Excellent idea!
:kick:
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