Thursday, November 13, 2008

Nuts and Bolts

Don't think we need to do something about the environment? Read this....brown clouds over Asia, decreasing the amount of sun to major cities there by about 25%.

This is cool...CSI meets Con-spiracy regarding the JFK shooting. There was NOT a second shooter.

This is ridiculous....what happened to separation of church and state?

A good argument for "taxes"....sorry Don! But it saves lives! I would also love to see similar studies on the effect of higher taxes on tobacco products.

This article, including the title, show why you cannot trade the stock market based on fundamentals alone. Expanding national deficit and unemployment were the two key economic numbers reported today. The market rocketed up in the 2nd half of the day. Technical analysis must be a huge part of the equation. In fact, now that I've learned about this stuff, it is hilarious that most of the newscasters, including those on CNBC and Bloomberg still try to explain daily moves on the news (e.g., "stocks plunge today based on credit fears, higher oil"'s all crap). See my market update to the right. Today was an important day.


julie said...

Don gets a shout-out!

Bob said...

I remember a similar study a year or two ago that tried to recreate the path and devastation of the "single bullet", the bullet that exited the front of JFK's neck, entered Connally's back, crushed one of his ribs, exited and entered his wrist, broke his wrist, exited his wrist and entered his thigh. They couldn't. In their tests, it barely went through the next object after the simulated human neck.

kath said...

WTF?!?!?!! And was I just trying to defend the teachings of the Catholics?! In response to Don's response to that, I wasn't suggesting that big G was telling the Catholics what to do with their time and money...just that's part of what they espouse from the pulpit.

But, the leadership is so f'd up! I hate them so much! Why do these men feel the need to dictate what women can and can't do? And do people really think Obama and pro-choice advocates are ENCOURAGING abortions? Noone likes the idea of an abortion but it has to be available and accessible, which it is not uniformly in this country. These men don't have to live with the consequences. These men will never know what a difficult decision I am sure this would be for any girl/woman. And the long-lasting effects of incest and rape with resultant pregnancy? Or fetuses developing with severe abnormalities that are either inconsistent with life or guarantees for a lifetime of suffering?

I will admit I disagree with Obama's statements on waiving parental consent. I'm sure he will change his tune on this or won't have to deal with it directly anyway.

I have thankfully never personally had to make such a difficult decision. But as I am in my childbaring years and have a wonderful, healthy son in front of me, I found myself wondering what I would do if there were problems with the current pregnancy. I am not asking for perfection and genetic engineering but if there was going to be sizable issues for the growing fetus ex utero, would it be fair to take away from my son who is already here?

UGGGHHHHH...I don't think I am making any sense b/c this whole thing makes me a bit irrational. The F'ing Catholic Church does it again.

julie said...

Having grown up as a very practicing Catholic, I'm always interested in how Catholics are seeing the world of politics.

There is definitely a faction of Catholics who believe in (at the extreme end) liberation theology and other shades of liberal politics, but that voice (thanks to the fallout from the Reagan-inspired culture wars) seemed to have been completely stomped out. These, often, are the same folks who are out there doing "God's work" running homeless shelters and soup kitchens, and taking care of the folks who are left out of functioning society.

Yes, there are still Catholics who (as in Steve's article) are preaching the culture wars, but I was pleased to see a bit of hope this year, a re-emergence of what I always valued and gleaned from Catholicism growing up, cited here:

Don said...

I don't think Kath understands what I was trying to say about Catholics (or any other religious group), but I often have trouble explaining myself, so that is understandable.

I think the Big G DOES tell people how to live their lives (at least those of faith). A devout Catholic does what he or she believes God is telling him or her to do. If not, then they don't have much faith in the big guy.

My point is that I have yet to see any scripture mandating that a Christian must force other people to do Godly things (like amorphous notions of "social responsibility") at risk of imprisonment, confiscation, or worse.

God does not need the local county board of supervisors to impose his will.

That being said, I think the leadership of any church has the right to tell any follower what they believe the church represents. If you don't like it, find another church.

And, while I don't think abortion should be illegal, I do think Obama and his ilk encourage abortion more than Republicans do. Whether that is important or affects a statistically significant number of people is another question.

Will said...

I agree with Kath...wanting to keep abortion legal does not equate with 'encouraging' abortion. So (Don) Republicans can't do any less encouragement than zero. (Saved by zero...saved by zero). They do more discouragement. how about that? yes it's semantic, but the word 'encouragement' has an advocacy component to it. Anti-choicers would probably not like this use of 'encourage' either: 'by making abortion illegal, anti-choicers encourage women to have unsafe abortions."

julie said...

Just a note about social justice and the Catholic church (since this one does strike me personally, I can't leave it alone) ... liberation theology does not directly address taxes, but it does use the example of Jesus in the new testament (as he consorted with sinners, prostitutes and other "neer-do-wells" and accepted them all for who they were) to view the world through the lens of the poor, the oppressed and the maligned. It goes so far as to say, indeed, that Catholics interested in social justice based on their belief that Jesus practiced it, should view the world PREFERENTIALLY through the eyes of the poor.

So, you can interpret that as you wish, Don. Yes, the case could certainly be made within the construct of liberation theology that a tax system that prefers the poor might be an agenda item, you are correct that it is not stated explicitly.

PS - the "scripture" that informs liberation theology is the entire new testament. LT looks to the example that Jesus set in the way that he lived his life as an example to follow. And in scripture you can find explicit instructions from Jesus to care for the poor and oppressed. Try googling Matthew 25: 31-46 to find specific instructions from Jesus on the matter. (Whatever you did for the least of my brothers, you did for me.) Or, alternately, try Luke 10:29.

As for the old testament, try Lev. 19:9-10.

All of these, and many more quotes from scripture reinforce the idea that we need to take care of the less fortunate as mandated by God.

But more importantly, perhaps, Liberation Theology asserts that all readings of scripture are biased and that all people take from scripture what they desire to see there. That you don't see what liberation theologists see in scripture is no surprise!

julie said...

Today's WaPo has an article about thinking among Catholics on the abortion issue:

Will said...

But what do you say Julie to so-called 'compassionate conservatism' including faith-based (or non-faith based) privately funded/organized programs for the needy that may achieve the goals of liberation theology without some of the waste of government machinery.

julie said...

Well, *I* say that faith-based initiatives do not have the infrastructure to make a discernable difference in the lives of the needy worldwide. And, that the reliance on faith-based initiatives to achieve broad social justice purposes is an excuse not to do anything.

I don't know what practicing liberation theologists would say.