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Rocknrule Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 02:29 PM
Original message
Top 5 myths about America
MYTH 1: The US was founded on Christian principles.

TRUTH:

This is incorrect.
The Constitution never once mentions a deity, because the Founding Fathers wanted to keep their new country "religion-neutral." Our Founding Fathers were an eclectic collection of Atheists, Deists, Christians, Freemasons and Agnostics.

George Washington, the Father of our country, and John Adams (Second President of the USA) CLEARLY stated in the 1796 Treaty of Tripoli: "The Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian Religion.

G.W. rarely attended church and instead followed a popular 18th century philosophy called Deisma Star Wars-esque philosophy that believed in a cosmic energy or big-ass universal "Force." The dictionary says that Deism is "a system of thought advocating natural religion based on human reason rather than revelation," that had nothing to do with Christian principles.

James Madison, original mastermind of our Constitution, was an Atheist to the core who loved skewering Christianity. In 1785 he wrote, "What have been fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity; in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution.

Thomas Jefferson, who sat down and authored The Declaration of Independence, rarely missed an opportunity to laugh at Christianity. In a letter to John Adams in 1823, he wrote: "The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesuswill be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter."

More ammo: In 1814, Tommy J. wrote about the Bible's Old and New Testaments, "The whole history of these books is so defective and doubtful -- evidence that parts have proceeded from an extraordinary man; and that other parts are of the fabric of very inferior minds.

In fact, it was President Jefferson himself who first wrote (to a Baptist church group in 1802), "The First Amendment has erected a wall of separation between Church and State." Therefore, when Jefferson talked about Natures God, the Creator and divine Providence in the Declaration that he wrote, he was being a hippie and referring to a general cosmic energy-- not the Christian God.

America is not a Christian nation. Period. Our Constitution derived from the post-Christian Enlightenment values of reason and truth...never from the paranoid yammerings of that otherwise compassionate cult leader who *beep* died in the Middle Eastern desert 3000 years ago.


MYTH 2: US Conservatives tend to be patriotic, ethical Americans; liberals tend to hate America and are immoral.

TRUTH:

Liberals aren't the traitors to America. In fact, conservatives who insist on sending American troops into the Iraqi slaughterhouse to watch some blood-n'-guts "towelhead" ass-kickin' are the traitors. Most of them could care less about our troops, no more than Mao or Stalin cared about the safety of their own soldiers. In the neocons' view, these young boys and girls are expendable test dummies. They're dying for virtually nothing, so that the hicks in the Bush Admin can make good on their campaign promises to their buddies from the petroleum and infrastructure-rebuilding industries. By revving up the Arab threat, these MFs can scream "national security" and "freedom" as smokescreens, while getting their hands on a diminishing resource: Middle Eastern fossil fuels, which power everything from your lightbulbs and computer that you leave on all night, to your stupid gas-guzzler pickup truck.

Pro-war conservatives are the traitors to America. With only 29% of the public approving of Bush's policies now, it took a full 5 years for America to finally wake up in bed next to this disgusting fact.

Do liberals hate America? No, in fact they care so much about the USA that they fight so aggressively to make it better. They're not anti-American; they're just anti-stupidity. Do liberals hate American policies? Sometimes, but only the self-destructive ones that threaten human rights, liberty, democracy, justice, inquiry, excellence and reason-- the values that our country was founded upon.

As for conservative moral superiority? Frauds. Think of the child-molesting priests, money-scamming televangelist preachers, Jack Abramoff's friends in the Bush Admin, gay-hating Jesus lovers, the Christians who beat up the professor who opposed intelligent design, human rights violators like Lynndie England and her Abu Ghraib hick officer pals, Tommy "Scandal-icious" Delay, Scooter "Leaky" Libby, the entire K Street Project meant to hire only Republicans, FEMA's Michael "Yer doin' a heckuva job" Brownie, and so on.

Oh and by the way, conservative Red states have a divorce rate 27% higher than the liberal Blue states, the per capita rate of violent crime in Red states is 49 per 100,000 higher than in Blue states, the top 5 states with the highest rates of alcohol abuse are Red states, and the per capita rate of gonorrhea in Red states was 41 per 100,000 higher than in the Blue states. Time to unshelf the antibiotics for our "ethical," "God-fearing" conservative friends with their "traditional family values."


MYTH 3. The US has a liberal media.

TRUTH:

This is a paranoid Republican myth.
Reality check: the US media is a mix of liberal, centrist and conservative voices. Also, the US media is largely owned by 10 corporations who frequently push pro-conservative agendas to the American public. Evidence:

1. Even Republican Pat Buchanan confessed, "For heaven sakes, we kid about the liberal media, but every Republican on earth does that." Neo-conservative pundit Bill Kristol also said, "I admit it: the liberal media were never that powerful, and the whole thing was often used as an excuse by conservatives for conservative failures."

2. A 2005 study in the Quarterly Journal of Economics found that "coverage by public television and radio is conservative compared to the rest of the mainstream media." Why? Partly because only four major corporate networks control American TV news-- up to 75% of the audience share. The "Big 10" media conglomerates who control the bulk of the entire US media are: AOL Time Warner, Disney, General Electric, News Corporation, Viacom, Vivendi, Sony, Bertelsmann, AT&T and Liberty Media. Yes, we have National Public Radio, but compare its public reach to that of Canada's CBC and the United Kingdom's BBC.

3. Eighty percent of all US newspapers are owned by corporate chains.

4. Liberals are virtually non-existent on talk radio stations nationwide. Rush and Dr. Laura, eat your hearts out.

5. Conservatives are very well accomodated for across FOX News, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Times, the New York Post, the American Spectator, the Weekly Standard, the Drudge Report, the National Review, etc. Even so-called "bastions of liberalism," e.g. the NY Times, MSNBC, WashPost and NPR make a concerted effort to be "fair and balanced" by bringing in right-wing views like those of David Brooks, Joe Scarborough, Tucker Carlson, Charles Krauthammer and Cokie Roberts to have their say in these forums, respectively. This is in stark contrast to FOX News' claims to unbiased objectivity, which were easily demolished by Robert Greenwald in 2004.

6. Contrary to what some paranoid Republicans claim, most journalists are centrists, not liberals. A representative sample of 141 US journalists and bureau chiefs were asked in 1998, "On social issues, how would you characterize your political orientation?" Answers: Left 30%, Center 57%, Right 9%, Other 5% . Next question, same sample: "On economic issues, how would you characterize your political orientation? " Answers: Left 11%, Center 64%, Right 19%, Other 5%. Also, look at the total number of think tank citations in major newspapers, radio and TV transcripts: Conservative TTs: 7792, Centrist TTs: 6361, Liberal TTs: 1152.

7. Eric Alterman summarizes a 1999 research study from the academic journal Communications Research: "Four scholars examined the use of the 'liberal media' argument and discovered a fourfold increase in the number of Americans telling pollsters that they discerned a liberal bias in their news. But a review of the media's actual ideological content, collected and coded over a twelve-year period, offered no corroboration whatever for this view."


MYTH 4. The US doesnt need improvement compared to other countries; it is the greatest country in the world.

TRUTH:
Wrong again. I'll only cite the statistics here.

USA Ranking on Adult Literacy Scale: #9
(#1 Sweden and #2 Norway)- OECD

USA Ranking on Healthcare Quality Index: #37
(#1 France and #2 Italy)- World Health Organization 2003

USA Ranking of Student Reading Ability: #12
(#1 Finland and #2 South Korea)- OECD PISA 2003

USA Ranking of Student Problem Solving Ability: #26
(#1 South Korea and #2 Finland)- OECD PISA 2003

USA Ranking on Student Mathematics Ability: # 24
(#1 Hong Kong and #2 Finland)- OECD PISA 2003

USA Ranking of Student Science Ability: #19
(#1 Finland and #2 Japan)- OECD PISA 2003

USA Ranking on Women's Rights Scale: #17
(#1 Sweden and #2 Norway)- World Economic Forum Report

USA Position on Timeline of Gay Rights Progress: # 6 (1997)
(#1 Sweden 1987 and #2 Norway 1993)- Vexen

USA Ranking on Life Expectancy: #29
(#1 Japan and #2 Hong Kong)- UN Human Development Report 2005

USA Ranking on Journalistic Press Freedom Index: #32
(#1 Finland, Iceland, Norway and the Netherlands tied)- Reporters Without Borders 2005

USA Ranking on Political Corruption Index: #17
(#1 Iceland and #2 Finland)- Transparency International 2005

USA Ranking on Quality of Life Survey: #13
(#1 Ireland and #2 Switzerland)- The Economist Magazine ...Wikipedia "Celtic Tiger" if you still have your doubts.

USA Ranking on Environmental Sustainability Index: #45
(#1 Finland and #2 Norway)- Yale University ESI 2005

USA Ranking on Overall Currency Strength: #3 (US Dollar)
(#1 UK pound sterling and #2 European Union euro)- FTSE 2006....the dollar is now a liability, so many banks worldwide have planned to switch to euro

USA Ranking on Infant Mortality Rate: #32
(#1 Sweden and #2 Finland)- Save the Children Report 2006

USA Ranking on Human Development Index (GDP, education, etc.): #10
(#1 Norway and #2 Iceland)- UN Human Development Report 2005


So much for those "socialist" Europeans and those "backward" Asians, hm?
We can do better than this.

Miscellany:
*Only 18% of Americans own passports and bother to travel outside of the US.
* 85% of US soldiers in Iraq believe that they are there to get revenge for 9/11.
* New international student enrollment in US grad schools has decreased by 6%, because of xenophobic post-9/11 US visa restrictions, jacked-up tuition fees and better educational opportunities in the EU and Asia. So no, not everyone wants to come here anymore, because it's become a land of incredibly limited opportunity, and we've lowered our educational standards.


MYTH 5: The US government loves to help other countries.

TRUTH:
This is a myth. The US government tends to be motivated by interests, not humanitarian principles.

Denmark gives the most amount of its GDP (1.01%) to developing countries; Norway gives 0.91%; the Netherlands give 0.79% and so on until the end of list, where the USA sits. Yes, America ranks DEAD LAST in foreign aid at a pathetic 0.1% of its GDP, compared to the other 21 nations listed as developed nations. The idea that the US government is a heroic bunch that runs around the world helping the poor and the disempowered is not backed up by the evidence. We have one of the stingiest governments on earth.

Most Americans believe the US spends 24% of its budget on aid to poor countries; the actual amount is well under a quarter of 1%. Our country also ranks #5 on asylum-seeker acceptance rates (#1 is Denmark and #2 is Canada).

For you self-congratulatory, redneck-inspired conservative *beep* who will start to say, "B-b-b-but you're anti-American! M-m-m-moonbat! G-g-g-god bless the USA!" I answer, "Go *beep* yourself. We can do better." Stop blindly believing everything your president tells you. Come back to us only when you start realizing that the $400 billion your president has allocated to his Roman Empire-style military overstretch could be better spent on correcting the sociopolitical and economic problems in the arenas that I've listed above.

For you fellow liberals: Help your reps and senators take back Congress, and stop dithering while the political tides are turning in your favor right now. The conservatives are terrified now; TAKE advantage of that. And don't waste time trying to explain rational things to any homophobic Christians, or hyper-patriotic losers who wave and cheapen our American flag only for a self-esteem buzz, or those testosterone-filled, gullible, culturally-ignorant military recruiter robots who lack even a basic intelligence. THEY CANNOT BE REASONED WITH. They don't understand statistics, elaborate charts, legislative proposals or complicated scientific explanations. Just let them go. Let them go.

In the meantime, Americans, stop being SHEEP and get up and do something before some bright and ambitious Chinese, Indian and the European students grow up to be international leaders and make your lazy, self-absorbed kids irrelevant on the world stage.

(NOTE: I didn't write this, I copied and pasted it, but I'd sure like to shake the hand of the original author)
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Faux pas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 02:34 PM
Response to Original message
1. This is fabulous! I'd like to shake the author's hand too, got a
link?
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applegrove Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 02:35 PM
Response to Original message
2. Well done.
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breakaleg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 02:35 PM
Response to Original message
3. An interesting thing about the academic ratings and Finland...
In Finland, children start school at age 7. There are generally no preschools until that time except if daycare is needed. In the preschools they do have, they are primarily daycare anyway. I'm told by friends that there are books and things around, but the children aren't specifically taught anything academic until age 7 unless they specifically ask the teacher to read to them, or show me how to do this etc.

My friend's daughter at age 10 was at the top of her class, especially in readying, with children who had started school at age 4. This was based on tests taken in an international school (outside Finland) put out by the US and other countries.

Just goes to show that early early education is not all it's cracked up to be.
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tridim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 02:47 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. Finland produces the most amazing computer programmers in the world
I never really understood why, but always assumed it was because their education system is top notch. I wish I was born there. Maybe in the next life.
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DFW Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 09:06 AM
Response to Reply #5
76. Maybe it has to do with their language
Where Norwegian, Sewdish and Danish are relatively simple to learn,
and are so close to each other that people from all 3 countries
just speak their own languages when visiting the other two and
are 90% understood (Danish is a bit rough on the throat).

But Finnish? Just TRY to learn that one. Anyone who can master
that language is already a genius. Stuff like mathematics and
computer programming probably comes effortlessly to someone who
has mastered the Finnish language.

Just try singing along with this:

Nuapurista kuulu se polokan tahti
jalakani pohjii kutkutti.
Ievan iti se tytts vahti
vaan kyllhn Ieva sen jutkutti,
sill ei meit silloin kiellot haittaa
kun my tanssimme laiasta laitaan.
Salivili hipput tupput tppyt
ppyt tipput hilijalleen.

Ievan suu oli vehnsell
ko immeiset onnee toevotti.
Pe oli mrkn jokaisella
ja viulu se vinku ja voevotti.
Ei tt poikoo mrkyys haittaa
sillon ko laskoo laiasta laitaan.
Salivili hipput.
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LuckyLib Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:02 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. Same with Norway. No parents using flash cards there to get their kids
"reading" by age 3. And they have VERY bright children.
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Mythsaje Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:16 PM
Response to Reply #3
12. HERE, I believe it just might be...
If only because roughly half of the students burn out before they get out of elementary school. Some hold on, simply due to pressures from family and such, but a lot of kids are turned off of learning by the time they hit middle school. Pretty sad when you think about it, considering that small children LOVE to learn new things.

But I guess it's okay we're still primarily using learning models pioneered a hundred years ago that act as though rote learning is the only way to go and that suppressing natural gifts for the benefit of comformity and easy routine doesn't screw things up.

What's really annoying is trying to address these issues with a modern educator, who instantly relegates your opinion to the trash heap the minute it becomes obvious you're not "educated" (which, in other terms, might translate to mean "indocrinated")in modern (or semi-modern, as the case may be) educational theories.

You just want to yell at them and say "Maybe not, but I'm an intelligent person who WENT THROUGH the system, and it sure as hell seemed broken to ME."
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Prophet 451 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:38 PM
Response to Reply #12
19. It's designed to be broken
The education system as used in most of the US (and UK, we're worse if anything) isn't designed to turn out bright, enquiring citizens; it's designed to turn out little worker ants, semi-skilled consumers.
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GizmoHD Donating Member (1 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-05-07 08:14 PM
Response to Reply #19
119. Another Myth
Another myth would be that America is a Democracy. America was never ever founded as a true democracy. Since a true democracy is Mob rules. There would be no need for Congress the House or the President... What we have is a Republic
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breakaleg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 04:28 PM
Response to Reply #12
23. Yes, I've had many heated discussions with teachers about such things.
Rather than try something new when her method wasn't working for my child, she would act like she personally invented the particular method and I was insulting her personally by saying my child wasn't getting it. Oh well.
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pnorman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 01:44 AM
Response to Reply #12
50. The Modern School (Stelton NJ)
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LWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 05:18 PM
Response to Reply #3
25. Early education is vital.
Edited on Sun Jun-03-07 05:28 PM by LWolf
The only reason to place it in a preschool is when it isn't happening in homes.

It's a fact; a plethora of research points to the crucial period between birth and 4 years of age for brain development and intellectual development.

Children who are surrounded by conversation, interaction with adults, and opportunities to move, to do, to explore, to talk about explorations; children surrounded by print who see adults reading, and who are read to, and who pick up books to "read" long before they are reading; children who learn social skills by interacting with others in the community at the park, at play groups, at church, etc., these children start school miles ahead of their peers who didn't have those opportunities in the home.

A preschool can offer those opportunities to children who aren't getting them in their homes, IF they are organized to do so. If they are not putting too many kids and too few adults together at one time and attempting to start their "academic" careers early.

I wonder how the culture, the social class strata, differs in Finland. Education starts at home. What are they doing differently in their homes?

Edited to add this:

I actually agree that children, whether in a home setting or school setting, don't need to be pushed to become little "professors" at developmentally inappropriate ages. That's why I posted this in the Ed forum:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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funflower Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 11:11 PM
Response to Reply #25
44. The key is stimulating the intellect, not forcing it. eom
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LWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:57 AM
Response to Reply #44
65. Yes. That's inferred. n/t
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pnorman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:09 AM
Response to Reply #25
60. "the crucial period between birth and 4 years of age for brain development and ....."
That makes much sense, although I don't have the teaching background to confirm. Check out those Modern School links directly above your posting. With VERY modest means, and run on "non-coercive" (ie: anarchist) lines, it produced the the sort of person who'd be a positive ASSET to any free society. (But NOT welcome in Nazi Germany or Soviet Russia!).


pnorman

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LWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:58 AM
Response to Reply #60
66. I'll take a look, thanks. n/t
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ProudDad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 01:57 PM
Response to Reply #60
93. Nor are people with critical thinking skills welcome
in the republicrat U.S. of A.
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FloridaJudy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 06:32 PM
Response to Reply #3
31. A friend of mine had a family from Finland visit her
For about a month. The thing I found startling was the kids (5 and 7) had no electronic toys. None: no iPod, no X-box, no Wii, no DVD player. They weren't even allowed to watch TV during the day.

Instead, they built an amazing "pirate ship" in the backyard using cardboard boxes, old garden stakes and bed sheets, and ran around waving hand-made wooden swords with great enjoyment. It was the sort of creative play I remember fondly from my own childhood.

I have no idea if these folks were typical of most Finns, or just weird intellectuals. But watching their kids play was a vicarious pleasure.
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bleedingheart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:41 AM
Response to Reply #3
64. early reading is not always an indication of brilliance
and I am not sure why some folks will start pressuring a two year old to read....

I had a dumbshit coworker once who bragged he could read at three...and to be honest based on his performance at work that was the pinnacle of all his life's achievements...
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 08:56 AM
Response to Reply #64
74. I thought I could read at four. I have the pictures to prove it.
In one I was reading to my 1yr old sister. I was holding the book upside down.

Funny how memory works.
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knitter4democracy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 10:18 AM
Response to Reply #3
79. I love Finland. Helsinki is gorgeous.
Clean, pretty, and amazingly nice people. Really amazing place.
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Cleita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 02:44 PM
Response to Original message
4. This deserves a K&R.
Thank you for this.
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Klukie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 02:59 PM
Response to Original message
6. Thanks for the post...
Kick
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Prophet 451 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:06 PM
Response to Original message
8. Small point
Regarding point 1: Freemasonry isn't a religion, nor is it incompatible with Christianity or any other faith tradition (although it is incompatible with fundie variants)
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DemSoccerMom Donating Member (168 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:52 PM
Response to Reply #8
21. Yes, I was going to make that clarification, as well.
In fact, numerous presidents, INCLUDING George Washington, have been members of a Masonic Lodge. :hi:
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Prophet 451 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 04:11 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. In fact
I seem to remember (although I may be wrong) that more presidents have been Masons than haven't been.
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Sadie4629 Donating Member (919 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:07 PM
Response to Original message
9. Re: The media
I once mentioned to a rw co-worker about the conservative bent in TV news. She pointed out that just before the '04 election, The Today Show did two or three days of Kitty Kelley interviews about her not-very-flattering book about the Bush family. And did not interview the Swift Boat writer even once. Whether or not you think the Swift Boaters had any merit at all, it certainly was a newsworthy topic, and if the Today Show had a conservative tilt, they sure would have had non-stop coverage of that book.

I know that's just one particular incident, but it sure left me standing there with nothing to say. Any suggestions on what I could say next time that conversation happens??
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tridim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:15 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. Are you being sarcastic?
The swiftboater lies were non stop on the M$M for months before the "election".
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Mythsaje Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:19 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. They may not have interviewed the guy
Edited on Sun Jun-03-07 03:21 PM by Mythsaje
but that's probably because they KNEW he'd never be able to pull of the scam in person. It was a credibility issue.

They're "conservative," not stupid.

Edited to fix a distraction error.
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:29 PM
Response to Reply #9
15. Credibility
Kitty Kelley had evidence, swift boaters didn't. Sad you were so duped by the story or intimidated by your co-worker that you couldn't just say The Today Show doesn't put on proven liars.
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spooky3 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:44 PM
Response to Reply #9
20. Here are your answers for your "rw co-worker"
Edited on Sun Jun-03-07 03:47 PM by spooky3
Spend a little time on the web, particularly at MediaMatters.org, and you will have plenty of facts for preparation. Here is a beginning:

1) Kitty Kelley has NEVER been successfully sued by anyone. Don't you think that if she had made fraudulent or inaccurate statements, someone would have gotten a nice big settlement after sending the lawyers after her? The point is that her books were extensively fact-checked. In contrast many of the Swift Boat writers' claims have been thoroughly debunked. See Mediamatters.org (do a "search") for the evidence of this. Therefore, even if there were a difference in coverage, the evidence is strong that it is because one book/author is credible, and the other is not. It has nothing to do with liberal vs. conservative "tilt." If you want to study "conservative tilt", your friend needs to start with two equally audience-appealing and equally factual books, which she doesn't have here, and she needs to go beyond one TV show.

2) Your friend is simply echoing a talking point made by that oh-so-honest Brit Hume of Faux Noise. As of August 17, 2004 (you can do more research for more recent updates), the Swift Boat liars' book and claims were featured multiple times on shows on the NBC corporate venue, including Hardball with Chris Matthews and Scarborough Country. In addition they received attention from many other networks and media outlets. As a starting point, check out:

http://mediamatters.org/items/200408170004
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Coexist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 05:25 PM
Response to Reply #9
27. Wow - does your friend from work post here:
http://mediamatters.org/items/200511300009

FYI - that Kitty Kelly thing was ONE (1) three-part interview.

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yardwork Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 08:00 PM
Response to Reply #9
39. The Swift Boat liars were on constantly for months
Kitty Kelley was denied interviews on most of the TV channels. Tell your right-wing coworker to get her facts straight. She's 180 degrees from the truth on this one.
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 07:26 AM
Response to Reply #39
69. Kitty Kelley
She had been on with Larry King plenty of times before her book about the Bush family... however, she was mysteriously denied an appearance on Larry King to promote her anti-Bush book.

And, despite being debunked within a few days by the NY Times, the Swift Boat Veterans were on cable news almost constantly for an entire month. Kerry's support among veterans dropped 20 points in that month.
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Richard Steele Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:09 PM
Response to Original message
10. Another K&R.
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Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:26 PM
Response to Original message
14. But..but..we're #1 in "defense" spending.
True humanitarians.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arms_trade

Rank Country Military expenditures, USD Date of information
World Total 1,000,000,000,000 2005
1 United States 478,200,000,000 2005
2. United Kingdom 48,300,000,000 2005
3 France 46,200,000,000 2005
4 Japan 42,100,000,000 2005
5 People's Republic of China 41,000,000,000 2005 est.
6 Germany 33,200,000,000 2005
7. Italy 27,200,000,000 2005
8. Saudi Arabia 25,200,000,000 2005
9. Russia 21,000,000,000 2005 est.
10.India 20,400,000,000 2005
11.South Korea 16,400,000,000 2005
12.Canada 10,600,000,000 2005
13.Australia 10,500,000,000 2005
14.Spain 9,900,000,000 2005
15.Israel 9,600,000,000 2005
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ellisonz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 05:34 PM
Response to Reply #14
30. Not only that....we are the worlds Number #1 Arms Pusher
http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/05/21/1333 /

And that's all we pretty much have left...
Face it, the United States is a proud nation of firsts. Among them:

First in Oil Consumption:

The United States burns up 20.7 million barrels per day, the equivalent of the oil consumption of China, Japan, Germany, Russia, and India combined.

First in Carbon Dioxide Emissions:

Each year, world polluters pump 24,126,416,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the environment. The United States and its territories are responsible for 5.8 billion metric tons of this, more than China (3.3 billion), Russia (1.4 billion) and India (1.2 billion) combined.

First in External Debt:

The United States owes $10.040 trillion, nearly a quarter of the global debt total of $44 trillion.

First in Military Expenditures:

The White House has requested $481 billion for the Department of Defense for 2008, but this huge figure does not come close to representing total U.S. military expenditures projected for the coming year. To get a sense of the resources allocated to the military, the costs of the global war on terrorism, of the building, refurbishing, or maintaining of the U.S. nuclear arsenal, and other expenses also need to be factored in. Military analyst Winslow Wheeler did the math recently: Add $142 billion to cover the anticipated costs of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan; add $17 billion requested for nuclear weapons costs in the Department of Energy; add another $5 billion for miscellaneous defense costs in other agencies. and you get a grand total of $647 billion for 2008. Taking another approach to the use of U.S. resources, Columbia University economist Joseph Stiglitz and Harvard Business School lecturer Linda Bilmes added to known costs of the war in Iraq invisible costs like its impact on global oil prices as well as the long-term cost of health care for wounded veterans and came up with a price tag of between 1 trillion and $2.2 trillion.

If we turned what the United States will spend on the military in 2008 into small bills, we could give each one of the worlds more than 1 billion teenagers and young adults an Xbox 360 with wireless controller (power supply in remote rural areas not included) and two video games to play: maybe Gears of War and Command and Conquer would be appropriate. But if were committed to fighting obesity, maybe Dance Dance Revolution would be a better bet. The United States alone spends what the rest of the world combined devotes to military expenditures.

First in Weapons Sales:

Since 2001, U.S. global military sales have normally totaled between $10 and $13 billion. Thats a lot of weapons, but in fiscal year 2006, the Pentagon broke its own recent record, inking arms sales agreements worth $21 billion. It almost goes without saying that this is significantly more than any other nation in the world.
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unpossibles Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 08:54 AM
Response to Reply #30
73. this is just a guess
but I would say we're also probably #1 in overthrowing Democratic governments in other countries (and maybe our own)
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ProudDad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:00 PM
Response to Reply #14
94. You can double that for 2007
Include Iraq and it'll be around $700,000,000,000 for 2007/2008
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Nimrod2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:33 PM
Response to Original message
16. So, why do hate Freedom so much?
:sarcasm:
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whistle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:35 PM
Response to Original message
17. I think the author is Sean Hannity, need to go and paste this at
...and include Hannity's name at the bottom


http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1455106/posts

:kick:
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Quixote1818 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 03:38 PM
Response to Original message
18. Be careful. Many of those quotes are taken out of context
It should be pointed out that many of the founders deeply admired Jesus Christ and felt his moral teachings were the greatest the world had ever seen or was likely to see. While they doubted his divinity they were in may ways followers of Jesus in the same way many of us follow Gandhi or other spiritual teachers.

Their problem was less with Christianity than it was with mixing Religion and Politics. Many of the above quotes are taken WAY out of context. Taken alone it looks like they hated Christianity but in fact they hated what Christianity had become when it was mixed with the power of politics. They wanted to create a country where all religions were on neutral ground and by people turning to Religion, they would do so out of there own hearts and not because the state had told them to. This they felt would keep both Religion and Politics more pure. They wanted to create a place where all religions were tolerated. Jefferson attended church frequently and almost always at a different church.

This quote for example is way out of context:

In 1785 he wrote, "What have been fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity; in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution.

If you go back and look at what Madison was actually referring to, he was pointing out the problems with mixing Religion and Politics. Taken by it's self it looks like Madison hated Christianity but he was trying to make a case for why Religion and Politics are best kept separated.

By taking this stuff out of context we really are not living up to the kind of tolerance the founders had for all religions. Can we please not pull the same kind of crap the Religious right constantly pulls?

The founders message was TOLERANCE!!! Lets stick with the facts please!

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whopis01 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 05:13 PM
Response to Original message
24. Only 18% of Americans own passports and bother to travel outside of the US.
I hate BS statements like that. Perhaps it isn't that only 18% bother to travel outside the US, but rather that only 18% can afford to own a passport and travel outside the US.
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Nikia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 06:37 PM
Response to Reply #24
32. As well as not having sufficient vacation time
I think that the average American only has 2 weeks vacation, but many Americans don't even have that much time.
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MountainLaurel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 07:02 PM
Response to Reply #32
34. That can be a large part of it
Especially when you factor in things like having to accrue vacation leave, needing to use vacation time for family obligations or professional development, and not being able to take vacation for the first 6th months you're at a job. Expense and the ability to get outside of one's comfort zone and social norms (most of my extended family would consider travelling to Europe akin to going to the moon) also play roles.
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skepticscott Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 04:40 AM
Response to Reply #24
57. Why is that BS?
It's a perfectly true statement. And a passport isn't THAT expensive, and neither is foreign travel if you do it right. You can get a passport for ten years for less than what most people pay for their cell phones and cable every month, and you can take a pretty nice vacation for what a lot of people spend on their giant TVs. It's all a matter of priorities, and most Americans would rather sit on their sofas text messaging and watching American Idol than broaden themselves with exposure to other countries and cultures. And while only 18% of Americans overall have a passport, 71% of gays and lesbians do. Explain that discrepancy, if you will.
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whopis01 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 11:12 AM
Response to Reply #57
85. This is why
What makes the statement incorrect is the word "bother". It implies that the others have the ability to do so and just choose not to do so.

The average number of vacation days someone in the US receives per year is 13. Almost 1 in 4 Americans have no paid vacation and no paid holidays. The amount of vacation days that you receive is inversely proportional to your salary. Those who can least afford to take non-paid days are the ones most likely to have to do so.

I absolutely reject the notion that most Americans would rather sit on their sofas text messaging and watching American Idol that travel to other countries. The monetary cost of sitting on your sofa watching TV is negligible compared to that of traveling to another country. It is not an equivalent choice or trade-off.

Beyond all of that, it presupposes that a passport is necessary for foreign travel. A US citizen can travel to Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Bermuda without having a passport. These are clearly going to be the cheapest areas to travel to for most people living in the US. These are the most frequently traveled to places for Americans. This is not accurately measured in a statement about foreign travel based on the percentage of people with passports.

As far as your question about gays and lesbians, here is some other info (I could not find your statistics, but these are similar if not even more in tune with the point you were making):

84% of gays and lesbians hold a valid passport vs national average 29% U.S.
94% of gays and lesbians would go out of their way to purchase products and services marketed directly to them. (Source:Greenfield Research & Kinsey Report)
21% of gays and lesbians report household income that surpasses $100,000 per year. (Source: Simmons Market Research Bureau)
58% of the gay and lesbian community members hold management positions. (Source: Simmons Market Research Bureau)
70% of gays and lesbians have at least a college education and work in professional and managerial jobs. (Source:Greenfield Research & Kinsey Report)

This suggests that gays and lesbians tend to earn more than the average American (only 15.73% on average earn about 100,000/year). Also, it is important to note that on average (at least in 2003), only 27% of Americans had a college degree, whereas 70% of gays and lesbians have college degrees. The average income for someone with a high school degree is $26,505. The average income for someone with a bachelor's degree is $43,143. ($49,303 for all people with a bachelor's or higher).

That would mean (my math here, not from the sources) a rough estimate would say that the average american earns $33k a year and the average gay or lesbian earns $42k a year.

Combine that with the fact that a gay or lesbian couple (or single for that matter) is less likely to have children than their heterosexual counterpart, means that you have more disposable income and travel is cheaper if you are gay or lesbian.

Finally, I would throw out the fact that gays and lesbians are likely to have a greater desire to go to places in the world where their sexual orientation is more accepted than it is here in the US.

I find the numbers a bit surprising myself, but when you think it through, it does start to make sense.


references:
http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0922052.html
http://www.cepr.net/documents/publications/working_time...
http://www.wildemarketing.com/pink_dollars.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Household_income_in_the_Un...
http://www.census.gov/Press-Release/www/releases/archiv...
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 08:52 AM
Response to Reply #24
72. I was going to say much the same thing.
A lot of us would be more than happy to travel, but I'm hard pressed to be able to drive out to visit my daughters in the midwest - much less fly to Italy for a week of tourism. If I know I can't afford to go, why have a passport?

Besides, tho I get vacation from my primary job, I don't from my second job, so days I miss is lost income. I haven't had a real vacation in three years - just an assortment of long weekends.
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Fox Mulder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:58 PM
Response to Reply #24
100. I agree.
I'd LOVE to travel outside the country, but I don't get enough time off and I could never afford it.
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Indy_Dem_Defender Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 04:45 PM
Response to Reply #24
109. Good to know I'm not the only one who feels this way
I just can't afford travel around this country for vacation, how the heck am I suppose to afford travel outside the United States? I get sick of SOME self rightous liberals who like to throw this into the working classes faces that their some how below them or uneducated because they aren't traveling around every year for vacation!
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bamacrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 05:19 PM
Response to Original message
26. This is great.
One of the best posts Ive read in a while. I am gonna copy and paste this so I can have some extra ammo against the crazies in this country.

:wow: :hi: :kick: :yourock: :woohoo: :applause: :patriot:
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Az Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 05:28 PM
Response to Original message
28. A kick and a story about G Washington
Washington had a habit of walking out of Church before the collection plate was passed. His minister explained to him that his departure had a negative impact on the congregation. Washington acknowledged this and never showed up again in the Church.
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Terri S Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 05:30 PM
Response to Original message
29. Excellent! K & R n/t
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yowzayowzayowza Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 06:50 PM
Response to Original message
33. MYTH 3. Liberal media.
Conservatives will always consider rendering reality w/o a traditional bias, aka real journalism, liberal. Yes?
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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 07:04 PM
Response to Original message
35. C'mon, Let's Be Honest Here: These Aren't The Top 5 They're Your 5.
Anyone can make a list of obviously refutable points and claim them as false. I'm not trying to flame I'm just being honest here.

Other then those who are firmly in the right wing I don't know anybody that truly believes those things. Do you really know people other than freepers who truly think democrats hate america? Sure, firm right wingers do, but as far as overall americans? Of course not. Same applies to your liberal media thing. Regular everyday americans don't say such things either. I hear many say our media sucks, but most who aren't firmly on the right or left don't go around saying 'that damn liberal media'.

Your point number 4 I think is just completely made up. Never in my life have I heard someone utter that we don't have things we could improve here. In fact, actual polls completely refute your position on the issue since an overwhelming majority of americans constantly think we aren't on the right track.

Point number 5 is even worse. How often do you hear people say that our government LOVES to help other countries? I've never heard that either. But we do help and we do help a lot. A lot of it is genuine. I don't agree with the premise of this one.

So in any case, though you laid out some good logic for each, let's be real in saying that these are just 5 random points in which you knew you had some information at hand to dispute them with, but that they aren't anywhere close to being 'top 5 myths about america'. They're just 5 points that some people believe. Course, some people believe that bush didn't lie us into war either. Surprised you didn't throw that one in there.
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populistdriven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 07:48 PM
Response to Reply #35
36. These are the top 5 myths I hear the most around these parts mister nt
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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 09:09 PM
Response to Reply #36
41. Your Personal Life Does Not 'America Overall' Make.
Sure, if you live in a town where everyone's a freeper than maybe. But overall, for regular typical everyday americans, my post stands firm.
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populistdriven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 01:20 AM
Response to Reply #41
48. well sure, im looking at it from the ass end of the dog anyways (FL)
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SpunkMonkey Donating Member (27 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 10:40 AM
Response to Reply #41
81. Well fine, let your post stand firm...
but for many of us who do not live surrounded by freepers we still hear these points repeated blindly and obediently. I'm from the central Midwest and now live in a "liberal" area of Northern California, and I hear each one of these repeatedly in all areas.

I do think this could use a re-write (for clarity and to update) especially if it includes footnotes to back it up. If i had some spare time I'd love to make one myself. But OPERATIONMINDCRIME, if there are any points you find more prevalent in your experience then please share them for future consideration.

I think this would make an incredibly interesting (although heated) discussion, just collecting and listing what fallacies are highest in the minds of the general population.
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ProudDad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:02 PM
Response to Reply #41
95. If recent postings are any judge
"Your Personal Life Does Not 'America Overall' Make."

This is the pot calling the kettle black...
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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:04 PM
Response to Reply #95
101. Self Delete
Edited on Mon Jun-04-07 03:06 PM by OPERATIONMINDCRIME
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populistdriven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 07:49 PM
Response to Reply #35
37. These are the top 5 myths I hear the most around these parts mister nt
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 07:28 AM
Response to Reply #35
70. the liberal media one is pretty pervasive
Even a good percentage of Democrats believe the media to be liberal.

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unpossibles Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 08:58 AM
Response to Reply #35
75. are you joking?
I have heard lots of people - from friends to pundits like Rush Limbaugh - make every single one of those points and say it as if it were true. Hell, I have heard Liberals say America is a Christian Nation and that the media is liberally biased. Granted, the people who say these things tend to be the very listeners of those pundits, so it's not surprising.

Try living in Ohio for a while and tell me these myths aren't pervasive.
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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 10:48 AM
Response to Reply #75
82. You Probably Need To Re-Read My Post Until You Get It.
Based on your reply here, you didn't.
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ladym55 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 11:50 AM
Response to Reply #75
87. I agree with you
I am also an Ohio resident. I hear about our "Christian country" regularly and what our founding fathers meant when they created our "Christian country." I hear about the evil "liberal media" and how those other countries "don't appreciate what all we do for them."

I taught college freshmen for 19 years. These myths were pervasive. When I read the post, I kept saying, yep, yep, yep.
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 09:11 AM
Response to Reply #35
77. Mebbe up in NJ you don't see it
but round these parts I hear every one of these myths as gospel. Particularly if I get out and pick up the little weekly papers that surround the bluish enclave where I live. They are red state myths and, as the newsman in 'Liberty Valence' said, when the story becomes a myth, you print the myth.

Just because it doesn't agree with YOUR experience, the reality is not invalidated.
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skyblue Donating Member (724 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 07:54 PM
Response to Original message
38. Re: Myth 2 Conrederate flags show history of efforts to SECEDE from Union.
Edited on Sun Jun-03-07 07:58 PM by skyblue
Is that NOT Unpatriotic? I don't get it.

(ie...they're probably flown more often in red states which could be added to your red state list.)
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Nunyabiz Donating Member (504 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 08:14 PM
Response to Original message
40. He got everything right but #3
There are only 5 fascist corporations that own ALL of the US media not 10, and as far as "Mainstream Media" is concerned there are a grand total of ZERO "Liberal" (Air America is not Mainstream) maybe 1-2 somewhat Centrist and all the rest are clearly various degrees of Reich wing propaganda obviously Faux Noise being by far the worst.
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ironflange Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 09:42 PM
Response to Original message
42. Add this to #4 - Global Peace Index
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begin_within Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 10:11 PM
Response to Original message
43. And the myth that America is a "classless society."
Baloney. There are very strong, major differences in socioeconomic classes, and there is an ongoing war between the classes.
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stranger81 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 01:21 AM
Response to Reply #43
49. oh yes . . . and its related corrolary, that if you only work hard enough,
you can raise yourself up by your bootstraps no matter what your circumstances. I call bullshit on this equally pernicious national myth.
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begin_within Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 11:31 AM
Response to Reply #49
86. Because there are people actively pushing you back down, or actively working to
make it as hard as possible to raise yourself up.
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hfojvt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 11:32 PM
Response to Original message
45. the Madison quote is misleading, I believe
Madison was not skewering Christianity there. He wrote: "What have been fruits? ..." The fruits of what? The quote is given as if he meant, the fruits of Christianity. My understanding of the quote in context is that he was talking about the fruits of "state religions". Not so much a skewering of Christianity as complaining that it becomes corrupted by state power.

The author sort of undermine himself on myth 2. If he is a liberal. He sounds anti-American, and anti-Christian.
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spoony Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:22 AM
Response to Reply #45
56. I don't think many of the people applauding really read it.
Or, if they did, they're cool with deception and bigotry.
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Nunyabiz Donating Member (504 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 07:15 AM
Response to Reply #45
68. Madison skewered ALL religions however he despised
Christianity the most and for obvious reasons.

"What influence, in fact, have ecclesiastical establishments had on society? In some instances they have been seen to erect a spiritual tyranny on the ruins of the civil authority; in many instances they have been seen upholding the thrones of political tyranny; in no instance have they been the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wish to subvert the public liberty may have found an established clergy convenient allies.
-- James Madison, A Memorial and Remonstrance Against Religious Assessments, addressed to the Virginia General Assemby, June 20, 1785


"Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprize, every expanded prospect.
-- James Madison, letter to William Bradford, Jr., April 1, 1774
"


"Rulers who wished to subvert the public liberty, may have found an established Clergy convenient auxiliaries. A just Government instituted to secure & perpetuate it needs them not.
-- James Madison, A Memorial and Remonstrance Against Religious Assessments, addressed to the Virginia General Assemby, June 20, 1785
"

Entire quote in context: The question "What have been its fruits?" is answered clearly "pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution." The rest of the quote in context just further shows his distrust of Christianity.

"Because experience witnesseth that eccelsiastical establishments, instead of maintaining the purity and efficacy of Religion, have had a contrary operation. During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution. Enquire of the Teachers of Christianity for the ages in which it appeared in its greatest lustre; those of every sect, point to the ages prior to its incorporation with Civil policy. Propose a restoration of this primitive State in which its Teachers depended on the voluntary rewards of their flocks, many of them predict its downfall. On which Side ought their testimony to have greatest weight, when for or when against their interest?

-- James Madison, A Memorial and Remonstrance Against Religious Assessments, addressed to the Virginia General Assemby, June 20, 1785
"

This is what was common knowledge more than a 100 years ago, all these presidents and more were NOT religious, and "Unitarianism" back then was actually kind of a catch all or PC buzz word for saying you are Atheist/Agnostic without actually saying it.

""The founders of our nation were nearly all Infidels, and that of the presidents who had thus far been elected not a one had professed a belief in Christianity.... Among all our presidents from Washington downward, not one was a professor of religion, at least not of more than Unitarianism."
-- The Reverend Doctor Bird Wilson, an Episcopal minister in Albany, New York, in a sermon preached in October, 1831


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hfojvt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 10:58 AM
Response to Reply #68
83. what he despised in those quotes, again, was ESTABLISHED Christianity
To a 20th century mind an 'ecclesiastical establishment' sounds like another way to say 'church', but according to definition #9 in my unabridged dictionary 'establishment' means "the recognition by the state of a church as the state church".

So 'ecclesiastical establishment' means 'state church'. And his complaint about state churches? - That they do not aid in "maintaining the purity and efficacy of Religion".

I believe you are wrong about Unitarianism. In 1831 the Unitarian church was less atheistic than it is now, and you quote 1 preacher, apparently who had a PhD, as evidence that something was 'common knowledge'.

"As president, Madison followed Jefferson's practice of worshiping at both a local congregation and in the hall of the House of Representatives..."

http://www.loc.gov/loc/madison/hutson-paper.html
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Nunyabiz Donating Member (504 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 05:05 PM
Response to Reply #83
112. You can twist and turn it all you wish
but his words are clear as a bell.

And Hutson is a Reich wing Christian revisionist which has been challenged by many prominent historians about his clearly bias views that he has unfortunately sullied the Library of Congress with. Its no wonder that Reich wing Christians like Dobson, Falwell and James Kennedy are scrambling to quote this revisionist.

http://librimagni.com/~blaine/jeff2.html

http://www.talk2action.org/story/2007/2/20/171052/068

http://www.liarsforjesus.com /



and please don't tell me that you are one of those loons that say there is no Separation between Church and State.

Both Jefferson and Madison fought tooth & nail to assure that there was.

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hfojvt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 09:31 PM
Response to Reply #112
114. they are clear to me to
that you seem to be twisting them.

What does a loon believe? That at the time the Constitution was ratified that many of the colonies had state religions? That the Bible was used for teaching in most US public schools until the 1950s? That the Kansas Constitution gives thanks to God?

Separation of church and state did not mean the same thing in 1800 as people think it means now.
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Nunyabiz Donating Member (504 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-05-07 01:33 AM
Response to Reply #114
116. OK I can see you are a complete nut now
Nothing more needs to be said to you.
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hfojvt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-05-07 02:39 AM
Response to Reply #116
118. Nice of you to say it anyway.
But isn't that what lots of people say about Kucinich?

What exactly was nutty in what I said?

Is the Oxford Companion to SCOTUS wrong, when it writes about the 1800s:
"Public schools had a Protestant flavor, with teachers leading prayers and reading passages from the King James Bible without clerical comment. Legislative prayers became widespread; Thanksgiving, Good Friday, and Christmas became official holidays; and political rhetoric made frequent references to the Almighty. States prohibited blasphemy, enforced the Christian Sabbath, and forbade atheists and sometimes non-Christians to hold public offices. Protestant evangelicals rallied to pass laws prohibiting Mormon polygamy, enforcing temperance, and forbidding the teaching of evolution. Protestant activism also fueled movements to abolish slavery, give women the vote, and ameliorate conditions for industrial workers." p 837

"History, writes Bokonon, read it, and weep."
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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 11:38 PM
Response to Original message
46. Myth: Bushler and Dickhead are human.
Truth:


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upi402 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:04 AM
Response to Reply #46
51. answer; dicktater
question; what do you get when you cross a dick with a tater?
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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:11 AM
Response to Reply #51
52. Way'at upi402!
:hi:


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DBoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-03-07 11:42 PM
Response to Original message
47. Something more to add to #4
There was a study done in the last year looking at upward mobility among various western countries (US, Canada, Australia, and Western Europe).

Us was next to last. Last place was the UK.

When we can't even boast about "the American Sream", there is something wrong

(No link for study, but it was reported by the BBC news online. I will try to Google for it)
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Quantess Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:22 AM
Response to Original message
53. USA is the greatest country in the world, so why bother to travel?.
Self fulfilling nutshell conundrum. Question and answer all in one.
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pnorman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:01 AM
Response to Original message
54. Here's one Google hit:
http://www.shoutwire.com/viewstory/16866/Top_5_Myths_Ab...

It may take some time to trace it to it's originator, but I'll give it as try later. THANKS for posting that, by the way! It will come in real handy, for a long time to come!


pnorman
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spoony Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:19 AM
Response to Original message
55. "the paranoid yammerings of that otherwise compassionate cult leader"
3000 years ago huh? Nice grasp of history your untalented writer has. Or was he writing it from the future?

The sun rises. The sun sets. GD is used as a forum for slamming billions of people...
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rpannier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 05:51 AM
Response to Reply #55
59. I found it interesting
that Jesus died in 1000 BC.

If my math is right...This is 2007. 3000 years ago would make it roughly 993 BC
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Nunyabiz Donating Member (504 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 08:15 AM
Response to Reply #59
71. What is really interesting
is that there was no "jesus" so whether or not the myth started 2000 or 3000 years ago is moot.
There is also a good possibility the author merely hit the 3 instead of 2 key.

Either way he only made a typing or mythological mistake while Christians make the huge mistake of believing in fairy tales.
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rpannier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:58 PM
Response to Reply #71
113. If you say so...
I mean, you are obviously very adept at slandering a whole swath of the worlds population in one quick post.

And by whole swath, I mean around half the world's population.
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spoony Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-05-07 12:19 AM
Response to Reply #113
115. Unfortunately he isn't adept at it
He's pretty transparent and boring, regurgitating the same tired rhetoric others do, whilst claiming some expansive scholastic qualifications that his every word belies.
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Nunyabiz Donating Member (504 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-05-07 01:37 AM
Response to Reply #113
117. actually less than a third and shrinking thankfully.
and BTW about 1/3 of the planet is Atheist/Agnostic also.

Telling the truth is not slander.
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Vidar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 05:39 AM
Response to Original message
58. Excellent debunking of American jingoism. At least the Sandinavians
are doing something right.
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DrDan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:12 AM
Response to Original message
61. excellent
well - the message is not excellent - but written in an excellent manner - should be required reading for all repig morans

K and R
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Matsubara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:13 AM
Response to Original message
62. MYTH #1 - America is the land of opportunity with streets paved with gold.
Fact- people tend to stay in the class they were born into - upward mobility from the lower and working classed is much less common than the popular legends say. The few people who DID make it out of poverty to the middle class mostly did so because of the efforts and sacrifices of people in the labor movement - thanks to UNIONS.

Now that they are no longer a political force, the gap between rich and poor has widened to a chasm and mobility out of poverty is becoming as rare as it was at the turn of the last century.
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liberal N proud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:59 AM
Response to Reply #62
67. Unless you have the ability to play football or basketball very, very well
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ChairmanAgnostic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 06:39 AM
Response to Original message
63. SHAME on this poster, trying to confuse us with facts.
Fact based reality has been proven to be troubling. Anything that troubles our citizens is unpatriotic.
Ergo, Facts are unpatriotic.

Shame!
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ChickMagic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 09:36 AM
Response to Original message
78. America WAS a Christian Nation
before the consitution was written. The puritan witch burnings were fresh in their memories.
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ChairmanAgnostic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 10:37 AM
Response to Reply #78
80. there were many sects, and there were many deists
Several colonies banned some sects, and in the 1690s Virginia actually executed a woman because of her religious beliefs.
I guess some of those promoting religion in the US would like to get back to the good olde days.
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bluevoter4life Donating Member (387 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 11:01 AM
Response to Reply #80
84. Wow. Just wow.
I'm going to spread this around. I wish more people could write something like this.
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ChickMagic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:37 PM
Response to Reply #80
104. Absolutely!
They're Gawdly that way.
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lefador Donating Member (224 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:41 PM
Response to Reply #78
99. Indeed...
In fact most of the framers of the constitution would be fairly alarmed by the fact that their document was amended to include women and minorities. The target audience for the original US constitution were rich white male land owners. That is why some amendments that extended equality to other members of the population took basically over one century to get included on the document.

The context of the "religious" under which some people read the US constitution, is also a tad bogus. Most framers were not that interested in religious freedom, as much as they were interested in keeping the Anglican church, which was directly controlled by the English Crown, out of American affairs.

The constitution at the end of the day is a document by a bunch of male WASPs who didn't want to keep on paying taxes and for the male WASPs. The main genius resides in the founding father that pushed for making the document amendable, as they recognized that the republic they were founding
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ChickMagic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:40 PM
Response to Reply #99
105. I forgot who the comic was
but he said, "Christians came to the new world because middle age Christianity in Europe was just not harsh enough."
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DNATC Donating Member (3 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 12:12 PM
Response to Original message
88. re: #3 Stop fooling yourself
I had no problem with myths 1, 2, 4 & 5, but I always get a kick out of listening to Democrats (I consider myself a moderate independent) state over and over that the press is nicely positioned in the center. Yep, tell that to the 11 out of 12 journalists (according to a poll in 2004) who said they would vote for Kerry over Bush - and I think we all know how that turned out. Too much protesting on this topic. Accept your victory gracefully.
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brg5001 Donating Member (240 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 12:48 PM
Response to Reply #88
89. Hey 1-post Freeper: Your "poll" is phony -- a product of Neil Boortz
Edited on Mon Jun-04-07 12:57 PM by brg5001
Sorry, but the media are only as liberal as the conservatives and conservative corporate businesses that own them. Your poll numbers were invented -- but not by you. Michael Weiner aka Savage, Neil Boortz, Glen Bleck (sic) and other powerful conservative talkers -- who dominate the high power stations and networks but regularly whine how powerless they are -- regularly invent polls showing that journalists overwhelmingly would vote Democratic. Not only are those numbers exaggerated, but what is not stated is that many journalists are young and college-educated and if one looks at a similar profile of young, educated inviduals, they too usually vote Democratic as well. But that's not the whole story.

The reality is, the people making the news decisions -- editors, publishers, defense contractors (think GE) -- are status-quo conservatives. And some of the owners, such as Murdoch (Faux News, NY Post) and the Bankcrofts (Wall St. Journal) are far-right conservatives well out of the mainstream. However, kudos to the Bankcrofts for keeping their opinions on the editorial page and out of the news -- unlike Murdoch.

If the media are so liberal, why don't self-described liberals get invited on Sunday talk shows? Why doesn't NPR.org read more like TheNation.com? Why isn't Bill Moyers the White House correspondent or lead anchor every night on ABC or CNN or even PBS?

I urge you to read some real liberal journalism, then compare it with the mainstream media pablum and especially the volume of airtime granted Hannity/Limbaugh/Dr. Laura/Weiner/Beck/Boortz/Ingraham/O'Leilly and anyone else who's full of right-wing invective, and ask where is the balance? Compared to this tidal wave of right-wing bluster, there are only a handful of stations airing Ed Schultz, or Stephanie Miller, or Randi Rhodes or Lionel, or anyone else willing to challenge the right on anything, ever.

Also check out mediamatters.org. They have thoroughly demolished the "liberal media" myth.

Personally, I don't care what your politics are -- centrist, Democrat, liberal, conservative, libertarian -- you're entitled to your own opinion. But you're not entitled to your own facts, and the poll you cited was an opinion and not a fact.

edited for clarity
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DNATC Donating Member (3 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:41 PM
Response to Reply #89
106. Hi brg
Thanks for the kind welcome. New to this board, but certainly not posting.

I have an open, objective mind, and thus if you can produce a link that clearly shows this was fabricated, preferably not from a source that has an axe to grind (I know, don't we all), I will stop using these poll results.

Even if this poll IS fabricated, these numbers feel about right to me (purely anecdotal.) I am always humored by kool-aid drinking claims from those who seem to be on a kool-aid high. Based on this post and comments in your profile - my question is: do you like cherry, grape, orange?
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RaleighNCDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:41 PM
Response to Reply #88
107. As far as the media is concerned, journalists might as well be janitors.
Media OWNERSHIP is almost 100% RW conservative. If a journalist, who may vote one way or another in the privacy of the booth, writes in opposition to the owner's position he can look for a new job - look at Dan Rather and Phil Donohue. Look at Rosie, just in the last couple weeks.

The media is the owners, not the workers. The owners decide what gets printed or broadcast, not the journalists.
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DNATC Donating Member (3 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 04:57 PM
Response to Reply #107
111. Ownership...
... follows $'s! Plain and simple. That's why Murdoch has made a fortune. Fox found a niche THAT WAS BEING IGNORED (except on a few radio talk shows), mostly, up until that point. Even CNN and the broadcast nw's are beginning to copy FOX to some degree. Because they are shifting ideologically? No, because they feel the ratings pressure.

So, don't follow that line of logic about journalists following the philosophy's of the owner. The philosophy of the owner is $$! Rosie was let go because sponsors felt the pressure and The View ratings were stagnating (after the initial spike due to the controversies) and were, I think, beginning to come down. If I was in the boardroom making a decision, I would say "fire Rosie - she's out of control and may bring down the whole house of cards", followed by a nice parting gift and thank you for helping the ratings.

Lest you or anyone else thinks I'm a fan of FOX or any conservative nw, let me say that I am for truth, without any whitewashing or spin. I feel much of what we are fed from the media has been prostituted on the altar of political correctness, someone's agenda, or ratings, or all of the above. I believe little of what I read or hear anymore, until I've heard it from multiple sources from both sides of the aisle.

Hey, BTW, you say most ownership is conservative? I don't doubt that (at least not much), but think about it. There's a quote about most people being liberal when they are young and conservative when they are older. I mostly hear it from the conservative crowd (naturally), but I think there is some truth to it. Owners are obviously wealthy people. With a few exceptions (e.g. Soros, et al), the wealthy, who are "protectionists" by nature, would tend to be older and favor Republican policy. They may have learned to be good little liberals in Journalism or even Business school, but they change stripes when it is convenient to do so. Just a theory, but I'd bet not too far from typical.

To reiterate, I think most owners would nearly sell their souls (e.g. let their newspaper or other media outlet back candidates they didn't like) if it pleased their wallet, or in the case of a public company, the upper mgmt would do the same if it pleased the stockholders.
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cagoldensun5050 Donating Member (200 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 01:12 PM
Response to Original message
90. Here is Myth Number 6...
Those libbies have hijacked our country and moved it far to the left!

Wrong! We've moved FAR, FAR, FAR to the right over the last several decades. Republican President Dwight D. Eisenhower would be considered to be left of the Democrats if he were alive today. Teddy Roosevelt would be a "damn Greenie"!

http://californianintexas.blogspot.com/2007/03/why-i-li...
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lefador Donating Member (224 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:21 PM
Response to Reply #90
98. If you analyze Nixon's policies...
... you will find that they are to the left of most of Bill Clinton's policies. The sad fact is that what in America passes for the biggest liberal/left party, i.e. the Dems, would be considered center/moderate right in most other countries.

The left in America is for most intents and purposes non-existent. There is no Socialist party to speak of, like in most European countries. Labor unions have literally no political power, it is not uncommon for European countries to experience general strikes (i.e. the whole country goes on strike except for the fundamental services) when unions want/need to flex their muscles when performing collective bargaining with the government. That is why European workers have month-long vacations and full social coverage, while here we are lucky to get two weeks vacation and some sort of benefits are seeing as godsend.

The Democrats are closer to the demo-christian parties in Europe which tend to be center-right.

That is why I always get a chuckle when I show some of my friends what a real "liberal" media looks like when I point them to some headlines from left-leaning media outlets out of Europe. They are scandalized when they get confronted by a left that has teeth like in Europe. I am not saying that the European left is perfect, but we need to have a fair spectrum in our political system not just center/moderate right (Dem) and moderate/hard right (GOP) as our main political parties. This leads to a lack of balance, the timid attitude by the Dems is even more of a discredit, as a Democracy needs an active and vicious opposition party to keep any administration in Check.
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Cults4Bush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:21 PM
Response to Reply #98
103. BRAVO!!!
You are spot on though most even on this forum will disgaree with you vehemently. Every now and then I take the time to point this out... I never get a response. There is no Left in America theres is a centrist party and a hard right party and that centrist party leans right. Its why we get posts cheered on that DK and Gravel should just up and leave the field and primaries be damned. After being told that the primaries are for people like us. yeah right..

I could go on but Im finding its pointless, the more the centrist dems take over this party the more apathetic millions of us will become.
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One_Life_To_Give Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 01:32 PM
Response to Original message
91. US Private Charities 2%GDP, rank 3rd
In all fairness the Governement may be lsat in giving aid. But our people are far more generous. Giving over $260 Billion in 2005 for a overall ranking of #3, compared to Denmark #14.
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Dave From Canada Donating Member (932 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 01:55 PM
Response to Reply #91
92. Great point. Plus, America has the most liberal immigration policy,
allowing more people to come there then any other country in the world, and that doesn't include illegal immigration. Yes, there are problems that need to be fixed, amoung them, education and healthcare, but overall, speaking as a Canadian, America is a pretty good country to live in.
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ProudDad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:21 PM
Response to Reply #92
97. Try living here
on Social Security with NO HEALTH CARE....
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ProudDad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 02:20 PM
Response to Reply #91
96. This is part of the PROBLEM
In the civilized portion of the industrialized world a choice was made to provide basic services like housing support, minimum income and health care for everyone as a cooperative effort.

In the U.S., the few beneficiaries of a system of ultra-privatization are allowed to dictate who does and doesn't get basic support. Here "we" trust a deviant "market" :sarcasm: to "naturally" provide for the least among us.

In addition, of that $260B -- how much goes to the symphony, opera, ballet, country club socials, etc. I doubt that much of it goes to the poor. I KNOW that NONE of it helps the 46 MILLION OF US WITHOUT HEALTH CARE!!!

It has nothing to do with generosity, it has to do with Income Tax law and policy. Hardly altruistic or even socially useful.
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AX10 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:07 PM
Response to Original message
102. K & R!
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lebkuchen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 03:56 PM
Response to Original message
108. For these reasons and more, I'm emigrating rather than immigrating.
I can think of 9 others off the top of my head who are, likewise, making a country other than their native US their permanent residence.
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Carolina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-04-07 04:48 PM
Response to Original message
110. K & R
and bookmarked
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