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#14412 - Thu May 16 2002 14:11 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


I take my statement back. BELONG is a poor chioce of words; I agree that gays can and do serve bravely and honorably. I should have been more precise in what I meant-- the BEHAVIOR does not belong in the military.

Apologies for the lack of precision...

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#14413 - Thu May 16 2002 15:58 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


Gays should have the same rights as everybody else. They are people too. But, so are prisoners!!

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#14414 - Thu May 16 2002 16:48 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


Info- How, from the perspective of relativism, can you accept any form of authority among the human species?

Whether is be the military, police, parents, teachers, or government (or Hillary's "village"), what gives any group of people the right to exercise authority over another group of people?

If we are indeed animals, isn't everything permissible and right and wrong do not exist. No one ever called the lion selfish for not sharing it's kill, or the possum a coward for pretending to be dead, or a preying Mantis evil for eating its own mate.

Thank you in advance for you response.

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#14415 - Fri May 17 2002 03:47 AM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


Prusik,
Absolutely, we accept authority! The only major difference is the reason we follow it. All in all, I find relativism to be more pure than religion in that it is based on an objective acceptance of reality "as we know it." And for relativist, doing good is purely based on an understanding of what is best on a grand scale, as opposed to religion whose motivations are based on an individual selfish reward accessible in the afterlife.

As for why people like me follow laws... Basically, whether you believe in religion or not, one thing we can all agree on is that our main purpose here on earth is to strive for the best life possible. How do we get that? With freedom, democratic governing, law and order, and protection of the environment we live in.

We accept that we do not know our own fate nor will we try to envision such a fate. We also do not believe in separate fates for each of us. That idea only serves to divide people and create evil. The Israeli/Palistindian conflict, past and present religious oppression/wars, and terrorism and 9/11 are a perfect examples of hatred between groups with different Godly beliefs. As a relativist, I only know that we are all one family, a species called the human race. Yes we are on top of the food chain, but we are still in the chain and not out of it. We see this because we understand that we are not above other creations, we are just a part of it. We also do not see humans as black or white, rich or poor, gay or straight. We only use those labels to express the wonderful forms of variety or flaws we have within our race as opposed to competing with and trying to exploit each other simply to lift ourselves up. And that belief is not only true, but is also pure. We are thinkers first. And that is why all our flaws in history have been reflective of a uniform code of thought that I, and many people like me continually try to resist.

Side note: Throughout US History, concepts like slavery and racism were always resisted by thinkers like myself. Conservative/religious thinkers accepted it as true because of hidden reward through religious/biblical messages. While there aren't as many extremist today, many of you hold the same thoughts extremist held back then. And its scary because most of you probably don't even know it just like most of you don't even know why you believe in the bible.

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#14416 - Fri May 17 2002 08:40 AM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Yukon Online
Operator

Registered: Wed Mar 14 2001
Posts: 1748
Loc: Anchorage AK, USA
Info:

Until another intelligent species shows up with the abilities of the human species, we are above other known creations. The human species is the only known species with the ability to imagine how things can be changed and create new tools to implement what we imagine. The human species above all other currently known living things possesses the wherewithal to protect or wantonly exploit other living things and all natural resources.

Living creatures came into existence either by a random action of nature or were caused into existence out of nothing by the direct influence of something that did not need to be caused (God). The basic concept of God is that all things come from God and return to God, what rewards I or anybody receives after death is a matter of faith or belief, or lack of it. Regardless, slavery, serfdom, indentured workers, and conscripted workers are exploited work forces that are not unique to a specific country, culture, or religion. These labels describe the exploitation of peoples having an ethnic or economic difference, to do major work projects for an elitist or privileged group. Sometime this exploited work force came into being because they occupied land wanted by other people. Whatever the reason, these work forces are not unique to a specific country or religious philosophy.

Yes slavery existed and was abolished in the United States and the major exploitation was the ethnic black cultures of Africa. While a great many Blacks were brought forcibly and against there will as slaves to the United States, many millions more died while being transported to and while at work in plantations and mines in Mexico, South America, Cuba. By the way, all these black slaves were needed to replace the indigenous people in these regions who were already killed working these plantations and mines by the millions by the Europeans who colonized these areas.

I enjoy your arguments in these matters but when using comparisons to necessitate what is good or bad about having a religious belief, or what is good or bad about liberals, conservatives, democrats, or republicans, gun owners, please remember your thinking or mine does not necessitate the impossibility or probability of who is good and who is bad. Regarding the past and current deeds of the government of the people of the United States, I am a proud American. I pay my taxes to support the welfare of other Americans. I wore and am proud that I wore the uniform of Americaís Armed Forces to protect the rights and privileges many Americans take for granted.

Iím also an individual who is responsible and accountable for my own fate. In such I take control of my education, work performance, and action to better my social economic status. I support and defend the Constitution and government of the United States because the reality is our form of government gives the total population as to age, race, gender, and social economic status the best opportunity to control their fate and improve their standards of living. Itís not perfect, but I vote and get involved in the community to help others. Have you, Info, personally gone out and volunteered in the community to improve the lives or living conditions of others? I am of the belief action is better than spewing forth popular myths and incomplete truths.

v/r

John

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#14417 - Fri May 17 2002 11:45 AM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Flame Offline
Operator

Registered: Wed May 16 2001
Posts: 336
Loc: Albuquerque
EH,

Keep in mind that I was addressing the issue as described by Info. I'll try to address your questions as described by you.

"1)If you had a son that was gay, would you bring him to a doctor to be "fixed?" Would you stop loving him?"

First and foremost, I wouldn't stop loving him. If this is a problem that has a solution then yes I would encourage him to seek assistance in the same manner that I would encourage and help if he had ADHD, cancer, etc.

"2)If there wasn't a way to "fix" this hypothetical son, would you rather have him live life alone, or with someone he cared about...however distastefull it might be to you? Forget about the sex part; concerning the actual relationship aspect, would you want him to be alone for his whole life?"

There is a difference between being alone and lonely. He never has to be alone or lonely because he has family. If he chooses to lead a lifestyle that is not acceptable to me then he lives with the consequences. This isn't just about homosexual relations but also other areas that I consider wrong. He is always welcome in my home but my rules apply in my home. Again it is choices and consequences.
_________________________
Flame On!
Jym Golden

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#14418 - Sat May 18 2002 00:09 AM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Flame Offline
Operator

Registered: Wed May 16 2001
Posts: 336
Loc: Albuquerque
Info:

"Side note: Throughout US History, concepts like slavery and racism were always resisted by thinkers like myself. Conservative/religious thinkers accepted it as true because of hidden reward through religious/biblical messages. While there aren't as many extremist today, many of you hold the same thoughts extremist held back then. And its scary because most of you probably don't even know it just like most of you don't even know why you believe in the bible."

Answer to side note: Throughout US history, concepts like slavery and racism were resisted. This was one of the problems that cropped up when our Constitution was being written. If you look at history, you will find that conservatives were the leading people to create change in these areas. This had nothing to do with the bible or religion. Both those in favor and those opposed to slavery and racism as well as the slaves and minorities all had religious (primarily Christian) beliefs.

INFO Described courtesy of Merriam-Webster.

Main Entry: rel∑a∑tiv∑ism
Pronunciation: 're-l&-ti-"vi-z&m
Function: noun
Date: 1865
1 a : a theory that knowledge is relative to the limited nature of the mind and the conditions of knowing b : a view that ethical truths depend on the individuals and groups holding them
2 : RELATIVITY
- rel∑a∑tiv∑ist /-vist/ noun

In other words no true belief, based only on the individuals knowledge limited by his/her mind.
_________________________
Flame On!
Jym Golden

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#14419 - Sat May 18 2002 00:32 AM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


As I sit here following this thread...I just couldn't help but reply to the whole relativist thought.

INFO: Are you sure you even know what relativism is? If you do then you would not be bashing religious thought as being selfish or bashing religion at all for that matter. True relativism (impossible to attain) is basically following what you think is right....or wrong. If you put two true relativists in a room and had them try to accomplish a task...nothing would ever get done because each person is unique and will have different ideas about the best way to go about accomplishing whatever task....and neither would be right or wrong which leaves them sitting there twiddling their thumbs. True relativism is actually the ultimate in selfish behavior because I can do whatever I want and you can do whatever you want because, by relativist thinking, it's acceptable. Not to mention, if you were a true relativist....you wouldn't be spending so much time trying to enlighten all of us on your "pure" relativistic thought because we are all right in our own way (relatively speaking of course). Relativism is not a 'higher' level of thinking or anything like that because relativism is nothing more than an excuse...if you don't like something then you just toss it to the side and say "I'm a relativist and I don't accept that".

Now your religion dicussion (always a dangerous venue but let's just forget being politically correct for a moment). I'll grant you that not all religious paths are the most 'pure' (look at the Catholic scandal going on for instance)....however, I would contend that there is an inherent difference between what you call religion and the belief in purely following the Bible (aka Christianity). In effort to avoid sounding preachy...I'll pass on explaining Christianity to you but if you do not know about it then feel free to email me offline with it (that's not meant to sound like I'm talking down to you but you'd be suprised at how many people don't understand the simplicity of Christianity). You say that some people don't even know why they follow the Bible....well, be true to your belief in asking questions and research a little bit about the Bible and I guarantee you'll be surprised at what you find.

Trust me on that one...you could say I was of "pure" relativistic thought a few years ago and then I decided to take up the challenge of proving Christianity wrong and now look at me....I'm a professing Christian <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="images/icons/shocked.gif" /> If you actually believe in what you post then you believe in keeping an open mind. Well, keeping an open mind is not only questioning all that's around you but also questioning what you yourself believe. If you honestly question what you yourself believe, and can reasonably come back to your beliefs at the end of researching, debating, and thinking it all out...then you will also be much stronger in your own beliefs or at least closer to the truth.

Hmmm...interesting name INFOSEEKER....maybe you oughta try TRUTHSEEKER and see where it takes you.

Anyway...my two cents <img border="0" title="" alt="[Cool]" src="images/icons/cool.gif" />

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#14420 - Fri May 17 2002 13:28 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


Info,
I find your post interesting, and I agree with you that many...not most "don't even know why you believe in the bible." I am sure this is the same with other religions too (Muslims and Koran). To me that is a little scary, but it isn't uncommon. That is, to believe in something that you truly don't understand.
What is even more scary, to me, is to see people who automatically disbelieve something that they don't understand (or seek to understand).
I guess what I am getting at is, I've never met an atheist who has read the Bible. More specifically, I have never met one who read parts of the Bible without having a closed-mind already. Why is that? Do most non-believers read the Bible (do the research) before they chose to live and die by their beliefs, or do they just want to be different (not like the believer)?

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#14421 - Fri May 17 2002 14:08 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


Good posts from all, and I think that Flame and option135 may have found something:

INFO, are you sure that you have thought your relativistic viewpoint all the way through. You say that the basis for authority among humans is "what is best on the grand scale". But on what grounds are you able to make this statement?

Who are the privileged who are able to defined what the grand scheme is? Similarly, tying into the origins of this thread, what gives the US the right to deny life to the Taliban and Al Qaeda? Aren't they are simply trying to follow what you have stated as our "main purpose here on earth is to strive for the best life possible" from their perspective.

On the fundamental belief that their is an intellect beyond our scientific realm (usually, by definition, called a God) that has defined standard of good, and define the absence of good to be evil, I can unhesitantly declare that action of Al qaeda as evil.

So it comes down to a simple question. INFO, if I don't play well with others in the quest for the best life possible in the grand scheme, am I wrong?

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#14422 - Fri May 17 2002 17:23 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Marty Givens Offline
Operator

Registered: Fri Mar 16 2001
Posts: 393
Loc: Eugene, OR USA
INFO&#8212;&#8220;as opposed to religion whose motivations are based on an individual selfish reward accessible in the afterlife.&#8221;
---Well this would exclude Christianity, which says simply that through grace (a gift from God) and not through works you will be saved. So we&#8217;re dealing with an ignorant relativist here-not new info for anyone who&#8217;s followed this thread at all.

INFO-&#8220;With freedom, democratic governing, law and order, and protection of the environment we live in.&#8221;
---Again, we don&#8217;t have democratic governing (thank God) it&#8217;s a representative republic.

INFO-&#8220;We also do not believe in separate fates for each of us.&#8221;
----Well, hang on a minute here, then why do you have so much disdain for the wealthy if they are going to eventually share the same fate as the poor? Seems a bit strange to me. You can forgive Islamic extremists for killing 2000+ people but you really hate the rich guy who lives down the street who never harmed anyone? Interesting.

INFO-&#8220;We are thinkers first&#8230;&#8221;
----And last, obviously, because you can never put into practice the relativistic garbage you think of! That&#8217;s why the US is so evil to you-you compare it to some paradise that only exists in your mind!

INFO-&#8220;Side note: Throughout US History, concepts like slavery and racism were always resisted by thinkers like myself. Conservative/religious thinkers accepted it as true because of hidden reward through religious/biblical messages. While there aren't as many extremist today, many of you hold the same thoughts extremist held back then. And its scary because most of you probably don't even know it just like most of you don't even know why you believe in the bible.&#8221;
-------Perhaps you can explain to me the hidden reward of slavery that&#8217;s in the Bible. I&#8217;d be very interested in hearing that. I like how you think MOST of us are ignorant of what we truly believe. This would suggest that you KNOW more about it than we do. Tell me INFO, when will this start to become apparent to the rest of us?

INFO-I really loved how you never backed up your RESEARCH claims on the brain and homosexuality (because you can&#8217;t). That is pretty much par for the relativistic course. Maybe in your brand of relativism if you hear something somewhere (and it&#8217;s not from some religious source) it must be true.

Another couple of INFO quotes&#8212;&#8220;I believe in creation.&#8221; &#8220;I think of a God as greater and who cares more about the macro picture rather then the micro.&#8221;
-----Okay so God created everything (fairly micro in my view) but then he only cares about what? The ultimate outcome? How well we work to appease terrorists? What exactly would be the macro scale of Glodly caring?

Option135&#8212;&#8220;Trust me on that one...you could say I was of "pure" relativistic thought a few years ago and then I decided to take up the challenge of proving Christianity wrong and now look at me.&#8221;
---Did you perhaps read some of Josh McDowell&#8217;s work? This is also a test to see if you actually read what other people post!
_________________________
Marty Givens
Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate

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#14423 - Fri May 17 2002 21:19 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


Without talking too much about myself, let me just say that I went to Catholic school for 9 years and attended daily masses and bible studies throughout that time. So I was definitely experienced with learning the ways of Christianity. What pushed me away from believing it was the lack of proof provided in the radical stories written. See, we cannot lose perspective and forget where the burden of proof lies. In the end, after countless debates with priest in my quest for answers, I realized that there's never any proof, as it is all about proofless faith.

Prusik, my belief goes slightly beyond the text book definition for relativism. I simply went to the next step as to how relativist rationalize the world. For me, relativism is about believing that there are no absolutes and that good and evil within humanity is based on the individuals or groups in the situation.

Text Definition: a view that ethical truths depend on the individuals and groups holding them.

Controversial ex: A lion hunts and kills a deer... Good for the Lion? Relativist would say yes. What about the deer's perspective? The same? Probably not. Is the overall situation good or bad? Relativist would say there is no universal answer. Now, as for what is best... I would say that it is best that the lion hunt the deer considering that it seems to be the order of the way things were meant to be. However, if there was a way for the lion to get food from alternative sources in order to spare the life of the deer, without the deer population being overwhelmingly increased, I would say it might be a good solution to both sides. Sounds a bit like democracy huh?

Now the difference in humanity and our country is that we do not need to kill each other to survive. Doing so is not in our interest. So with common understandings as to what is "best," we create a picture of good and evil. Religion spawns from those so called absolutes through the belief that they come from a central God. But in the end, relativist can create a picture of what is best on the grand scale through those common agreements we call absolutes.

I don't think the Taliban and Al Qaeda are striving for the best possible life. They believe strongly in religion. For them, the afterlife holds more precedence than their current life. But as much distaste I have for those extremist, I cannot by my beliefs say that their acts are evil. I like to use the word wrong to label their actions. Wrong in that they will not be going to any promise land by murdering innocent people. Wrong in that their beliefs come from an extremely incorrect premises.

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#14424 - Fri May 17 2002 22:08 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


Marty,
To answer some of your comments...

<<<You said: Well this would exclude Christianity, which says simply that through grace -a gift from God- and not through works you will be saved. So we&#8217;re dealing with an ignorant relativist here-not new info for anyone who&#8217;s followed this thread at all.>>>

Christianity has a reward system (heaven) in place for those who follow a certain code. Don't tell me that in the bible has no rules (10 Commandments <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="images/icons/shocked.gif" /> ) and tasks that we must follow in order to go to heaven. Task #1, we must accept Jesus as our savior in order to be saved.

In the end, I'm not saying that the tasks are either right or wrong. I'm simply saying that the motivation for completing these tasks have self reward in it (heaven).
------------------------------------------------------------
<<<You said: Again, we don&#8217;t have democratic governing -thank God- it&#8217;s a representative republic.>>>

Although representation is the best we can do presently, I don't think it accurately reflects the wishes of the people in its current form. Why? Money controls our representative's actions, not the people.
------------------------------------------------------------
I said: I do not believe in separate fates for each of us...

<<<You said: Well, hang on a minute here, then why do you have so much disdain for the wealthy if they are going to eventually share the same fate as the poor? Seems a bit strange to me. You can forgive Islamic extremists for killing 2000+ people but you really hate the rich guy who lives down the street who never harmed anyone? Interesting.>>>

How do these comparisons you mention between the wealthy and Islamic extremist come into play with any part of what I said? Who said that I can forgive Islamic extremist for killing 2000+ people? <img border="0" title="" alt="[Confused]" src="images/icons/confused.gif" /> Putting words in my mouth?
------------------------------------------------------------
<<<You said: That&#8217;s why the US is so evil to you-you compare it to some paradise that only exists in your mind!>>>

Paradise is what we all should strive for. If not, then you tell me what should we strive for.

And sure, we're better than everyone else, but do we judge how far we should go based on where others rank? Do we not try to continue perfecting our nation? Or do we just pause our development and advancement simply because the others are still behind us?

My philosophy: We should envision a perfect nation, then try to at least get half way there.
------------------------------------------------------------
<<<You said:Perhaps you can explain to me the hidden reward of slavery that&#8217;s in the Bible. I&#8217;d be very interested in hearing that.>>>

Rather then condemn slavery, there is a verse in the bible that says a slave must listen to his/her owner. Although I haven't read the bible in detail in quite a few years, I will make the effort to find the verse that explains further.

food for thought: If this country was founded on Christian beliefs and values, then why did the Christians not see that slavery was wrong at its inception?
------------------------------------------------------------
<<<You said: What exactly would be the macro scale of Glodly caring?>>>

The macro scale is all of life and humanity as a whole.

Key: Its not about the individual. Similar to military philosophy. Its not about ME, its about WE. Don't you believe in that? Or are you worried about "WE" simply to guarantee your own admission into heaven?

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#14425 - Sun May 19 2002 16:39 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
MaxPower Offline
Member

Registered: Tue Nov 27 2001
Posts: 112
Loc: FTCKY
Hey Marty, got a question for you. Do you think that the single seat representative system we have set up now is the best system? Or do you think a multiple seat representative system would be best? One in which multiple parties compete for a fixed number of seats state wide (for example, in the US House).

Instead of dividing the state into districts, statewide elections are held, then based upon the percentage vote received by each party, the seats are divided up. Let's say Republicans get 50% of the vote, Democrats 30%, Libertarians 15%, and Socialists (to make Info nice and happy) get 5%. Let's say this states has 10 seats available, then in the US House, there would be 5 Republicans, 3 Democrats, etc. representing that state. Much like the system in many European countries (Britain, Germany, etc.).

Possible advantages to a mutli-seat representative system would be a more accurate representation of a state's wishes, less impact of money on campaigns (in my opinion, races would have to be more issue based because of greater competition, you can't spend millions to run negative adds against all 50 of your opponents), and less partisanship.

Of course, the system would be complicated to voters, it would actually require many to really think about who they vote for, creating a greater feeling that their vote DOES count again, and would require that they research their candidates more closely.

I think it would be a much better system, almost impossible to retrofit into our country's government, but a very good system none-the-less. You? Anyone else?

Matt

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#14426 - Sun May 19 2002 20:07 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Marty Givens Offline
Operator

Registered: Fri Mar 16 2001
Posts: 393
Loc: Eugene, OR USA
My answer to INFO first:

INFO asks me&#8212;&#8220;How do these comparisons you mention between the wealthy and Islamic extremist come into play with any part of what I said? Who said that I can forgive Islamic extremist for killing 2000+ people? Putting words in my mouth?&#8221;

This an INFO quote from way back-&#8220;Let us claim to be a christian based nation while simultaneously being the most materialistic and greedy people on the face of the earth. No wonder they hate us. We can't even band together to see our own mistakes. We consume and consume without a thought about the world and the greater good for all mankind. Gotta have that gas guzzing SUV at all cost huh?&#8221;

If that&#8217;s not an example of being an apologist (and therefore forgiving someone of their actions) I don&#8217;t know what is! I would NEVER put words in your mouth INFO-you give me plenty to use without me having to make up anything you said!
You said we will share the same fate so I don&#8217;t see why you would take an understanding tone with murderers and at the same time have so much hate for someone who&#8217;s only sin is being an achiever.

INFOism---&#8220;Paradise is what we all should strive for. If not, then you tell me what should we strive for.&#8221;

----I just have a basic disagreement here. Paradise is unattainable; we should strive to make the very best of what we have.

----Wait folks we have a HUGE admission here from INFO---&#8220;And sure, we're better than everyone else&#8221;---this may be proof that we are, in fact, making progress!

&#8221;My philosophy: We should envision a perfect nation, then try to at least get half way there.&#8221;

----Since we all hold a variety of opinions on what perfect is that would be a pretty hard state to envision. In my perfect vision playing golf at Pebble Beach would be free-but then it wouldn&#8217;t be as special as it is&#8212;see I can even ruin my own perfect vision!

INFO---&#8220;Rather then condemn slavery, there is a verse in the bible that says a slave must listen to his/her owner. Although I haven't read the bible in detail in quite a few years, I will make the effort to find the verse that explains further.
food for thought: If this country was founded on Christian beliefs and values, then why did the Christians not see that slavery was wrong at its inception?&#8221;

----More food for thought for you INFO, slavery was the human norm long before the USA came into existence, how many nations fought civil wars to eliminate it? Many of the Framers saw that slavery was wrong but it was not a wrong that was erasable by the stroke of a pen. And don&#8217;t come back with the slaves were only considered 3/5ths human garbage-that was not the case. The verses you may site are irrelevant; the idea behind them is to be content in your role as a slave and to serve your master honorably. By honoring your master on earth you honor God (this verse holds true today--as your employer is your master you should honor him and serve him like a slave serves a master). Christians are called in the New Testament to be slaves to Christ and his teaching. In that they put his wants and needs above their own.

INFO---&#8220;Its not about ME, its about WE. Don't you believe in that? Or are you worried about "WE" simply to guarantee your own admission into heaven?&#8221;

----Christianity is about me, in the sense that is it about my personal relationship with God. But it is much more so about WE, as I follow the teachings of Christ I learn to put others ahead of myself because I am secure in the knowledge that God will provide for ME. This frees me up to worry about the WE!

You may have gone to Catholic school but you have no grasp of Christianity as it&#8217;s meant to be.
_________________________
Marty Givens
Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate

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#14427 - Sun May 19 2002 20:32 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Marty Givens Offline
Operator

Registered: Fri Mar 16 2001
Posts: 393
Loc: Eugene, OR USA
And now answers for Ebb (who doesn&#8217;t capitalize his name for some reason)

---&#8220;Do you think that the single seat representative system we have set up now is the best system? Or do you think a multiple seat representative system would be best? One in which multiple parties compete for a fixed number of seats state wide (for example, in the US House).&#8221;

I do think that our system is superior to those of every other country. In your example of dividing state allocated seats into a % of votes there is a great example of where this system failed miserably. Germany in the 1930&#8217;s! This system allowed for the Nazi party to take power (although there were considerable murderous machinations taken place to allow it) by fracturing the country into so many different sects that it took only a small plurality for the Nazis to take power. There is also a certain amount of elegance by simplicity in our system, there are only two viable parties and they are sufficiently diverse to attract the vast majority of voters. Third and fourth party candidates can be elected but they are completely ineffectual once they are&#8212;unless they side with one party or the other.

The system isn&#8217;t perfect! There are major problems with it but the fact is that change can be affected from within each party. Just look at how far left the Democrats have gone since the days of JFK. They are a totally different party.

---&#8220;Possible advantages to a mutli-seat representative system would be a more accurate representation of a state's wishes, less impact of money on campaigns (in my opinion, races would have to be more issue based because of greater competition, you can't spend millions to run negative adds against all 50 of your opponents), and less partisanship.&#8221;

I think that you would see that voter apathy would rise with this system (if it&#8217;s truly possible for US voters to be MORE apathetic) and I think you would actually see an increase in overall spending but it would be diluted through the multi-party giving. I do agree that you would HAVE to run more ads about why YOU should be elected because it would be impossible to focus on all the detriments of the other guys/gals running! That would be a GOOD thing!

This may come as no surprise to some but I do plan to run for elected office in the fairly near future. One of the ideas I will use to separate myself from others is the idea of citizen representatives, whether I run for the House or the Senate. The idea being that my entire focus will be on representing my constituency and not on being re-elected. If I serve only one term I will do the best I can during that time and not be persistently concerned whether or not I&#8217;ll win my seat back! Politicians are basically whores to money once they are elected and they contract Potomac fever. I think that is the most basic problem of our current state of governmental affairs.

I eagerly await your reply ebb!
_________________________
Marty Givens
Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate

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#14428 - Sun May 19 2002 20:57 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
MaxPower Offline
Member

Registered: Tue Nov 27 2001
Posts: 112
Loc: FTCKY
All good points. I could really see it going either my way or your way, it would all depend on how politicians, the public, and the media "treat" the system.

Hadn't thought about the Nazi Germany aspect. Like I said, the only real world examples I know of right now are pretty much every European country. The way its working now, as far as I can tell and as opposed to the Nazi example you put forth, is that neither party on its own has the ability to take control of any one aspect of law making. To pass legislation, they need to form aliances, etc. Like anything, that factor has its upsides and downsides, and the only ones I can think of right now could fall into both categories (i.e. you could have less of an impact from the media or GREATER impact).

Just an interesting thought provoker I thought I'd throw out there.

Good luck with your political aspirations. Have no doubt that you can resist the corruption inherent in Congress nowadays <img border="0" title="" alt="[Smile]" src="images/icons/smile.gif" />

Matt

PS - Just never felt like capitalizing my name when I use it as my username on forums, etc. Just one of those quirks.

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#14429 - Mon May 20 2002 23:25 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


Marty,
</font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif"> Politicians are basically whores to money once they are elected and they contract Potomac fever. I think that is the most basic problem of our current state of governmental affairs. </font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">With a statement like that, it is odd as to why you do not support campaign finance reform, if not in its current form, then at least the idea of reform.

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#14430 - Tue May 21 2002 08:36 AM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Flame Offline
Operator

Registered: Wed May 16 2001
Posts: 336
Loc: Albuquerque
Info,

I don't see what is odd about Marty not supporting CFR in it's current form. It violates the Constitution and provides no real change to the present system. The problem with the present system is no responsibility for anyone, especially the candidate. If you make some simple changes then CFR could work.

First: Set spending caps on the campaign based on the population the candidate will represent. Combine this with mandatory reporting of contributions (who, what, when, where, and how) and the reporting of expenditures. In other words, complete disclosure of the campaign finances. In this manner, it doesn't matter if the candidate receives millions from 1 person or many people.

Second: Make all advertisements be approved/disapproved by the campaign. When the ad is run on TV/video then a disclaimer shall be posted in large letters at the bottom (throughout the entire ad) stating whether the campaign approves or diapproves of the content. For radio you have a statement at the beginning and the end making the same approval or disapproval statement.

With these two simple steps you now know where the candidate gets his/her funding and where they claim to stand on the issues. Then let the consequences occur whether good or bad based on the actions of the candidate without violating the Constitution.
_________________________
Flame On!
Jym Golden

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#14431 - Wed May 22 2002 00:25 AM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Anonymous
Unregistered


I like the idea of mandatory reporting of contributions, however, I do see major flaws. We would need a very observant public which we all know we do not have. And in the end, there will be to many political pop shots from rival candidates on finances, that the qualifications of the candidate will be a shadow. It'll be confusing and chaotic for an average people to follow.

Another idea I had is a blind fund. Business's contribute solely because they like a candidate. The money goes to a blind fund for the candidate. The candidate will never be able to obtain information as to who gave him what so it prevents him from creating or supporting policies based solely on contributions. You may not like this idea but it will weed out the sneaky business's that are trying to buy government while at the same time does not violate the constitution.

Many business's may not contribute (must of had sneaky intentions anyway) which will also create a more even playing field for 3rd party candidates. Then we finally can have more then just 2 choices.

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#14432 - Tue May 21 2002 13:23 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Marty Givens Offline
Operator

Registered: Fri Mar 16 2001
Posts: 393
Loc: Eugene, OR USA
INFO-I know you'd love to find some inconsistency on my part (keep looking it may be there), but as to politicians, money, and the fund raising system there is only 1 problem.

Since it's impossible for a system to be corrupt and money is not of itself corrupt. Then the problem can only be laid at the feet of the politicians. They may cry and moan about how they are being corrupted with money but the fault is their own.

Speaking of corrupt politicians how about Daschle, Gephardt, and Clinton? How morally bankrupt are they to go on TV and spout how President Bush "knew" about Sept. 11th before hand and therefore he allowed it to happen. What a sad bunch they are-truly despicable individuals.
_________________________
Marty Givens
Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate

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#14433 - Tue May 21 2002 16:52 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Flame Offline
Operator

Registered: Wed May 16 2001
Posts: 336
Loc: Albuquerque
Info,

I've found that if you expect people to understand and participate, tell them you know they can comprehend and make a difference, then they usually respond positively and accept the challenge. Instead of dumbing down the system, challenge the people to reach for new levels and let the people decide if their candidate exhibits the ideas and concerns most important to them (the constituency). This would be a big change from the way voters are currently treated/manipulated.

Your method contains no provision for responsibility. I guarantee that big contributors will let "their" candidate know that a contribution is coming in a certain amount therefore they still have the possible hook in the candidate but now both have "plausible deniability". Instead let it be known publically who contributed, to which candidate, and whether this was accepted or rejected.

Personal responsibility! If I know that I am being paid with "illegal" money then the law says that I am an accessory to the crime. My method takes this criminal concept, places it in a civilian format and holds the candidate personally responsible for the consequences. If the voters feel strongly about big business then if the candidate accepts major money from big business this is public knowledge. IOW let the people have accurate data and make their choice instead of the current media hype, lying, and deception.
_________________________
Flame On!
Jym Golden

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#14434 - Tue May 21 2002 16:58 PM Re: 9-11 Related Comments to Ponder
Flame Offline
Operator

Registered: Wed May 16 2001
Posts: 336
Loc: Albuquerque
Marty,

Inconsistent? Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don't! Other then this little problem you are very consistent in your conservative views and providing factual basis for your conclusions. Maybe in the relativistic world this consistent view is considered inconsistent? LOL <img border="0" title="" alt="[Razz]" src="images/icons/tongue.gif" />
_________________________
Flame On!
Jym Golden

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