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Barry Goldwater on Religion and Politics

Posted by dbhalling 3 years, 9 months ago to Politics
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On religious issues there can be little or no compromise. There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God's name on one's behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both.
I'm frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in "A," "B," "C" and "D." Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me?
And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of "conservatism."
Speech in the US Senate (16 September 1981)


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  • 11
    Posted by Herb7734 3 years, 9 months ago
    This is a serious issue that I have a hard time taking seriously. To me, religion, and especially religion in politics, is such a ridiculous presentment that I revert to a joker and start in mocking and satirizing. I will go into a long-winded diatribe about my "religion" the worship of Eris, Greek Goddess of chaos. How our symbols (a convoluted mish-mash) is called the holy chao. And how based on its precepts I run my life and base my decisions. It's a good thing I'm old and retired. I used to get into lots of trouble.
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    • Posted by  $  jlc 3 years, 9 months ago
      I worship wax fruit, myself. One of the pieces of fruit is an apple...does that mean that you are a despised splinter sect from my righteous Wax Fruit religion?

      Jan
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      • Posted by Herb7734 3 years, 9 months ago
        Eris, angry at not being invited to a wedding of the gods rolled a beautiful golden apple down the aisle inscribed with "KALLISTI" meaning to the prettiest one. Each goddess deeming herself to be the pretties fought over possession of the apple, thus ruining the wedding. Those of us following the example of Eris belong to the Golden Apple Corps..
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  • Posted by coaldigger 3 years, 9 months ago
    I am proud of the fact that the first vote I was eligible to cast was for Barry Goldwater. It has been pretty much voting for the lesser of two evils ever since.
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    • Posted by DeanStriker 3 years, 9 months ago
      I had just moved to Arizona and was with the cheering section when Barry announced for the Presidency from the Prescott Courthouse steps. A couple of years after that I worked hard to get the Libertarian Party on the ballot.

      The "lesser evils" have always won, long before Goldwater had his chance, while today most of them are Greater Evils, yet 98% of the voters voted "Yay". Go figger!
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      • Posted by jdg 3 years, 9 months ago
        I don't think the LP was around in 1966.
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        • Posted by DeanStriker 3 years, 9 months ago
          1966 was "about" the year, and our work to get our Yavapai County LP on the ballot was most certainly by 1968, as I gathered and filed my petitions to be on the ballot for the AZ legislature that year. I also at around that same time took part in the first Convention of the AZ LP in Tucson.

          Trying to verify more, I went to the Arizona LP website but found nothing about the beginning other than a copy of it's "Amended and Restated Articles... dated in 1999. During those years afterward, I was not in Arizona, but am aware that the LP lost it's credentials in many states by failing to meet requirements of some/many states to meet vote-getting requirements. More I know not.
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          • Posted by jdg 3 years, 9 months ago
            The national party says it began in 1971, in David Nolan's living room.
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            • Posted by DeanStriker 3 years, 9 months ago
              That may be correct for the "national" party. The Libertarian movement began piecemeal in places around the country. Arizona must have been among the very first, as I can place the timing of our beginnings within the time-frame of my life. I figure at this point I best at least make a phonecall back to Yavapai County recorder. If I locate some records I'll remember to pass it on to you. Thanks.
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  • Posted by ArLyneDiamond1961 3 years, 9 months ago
    I was active in Barry Goldwater's campaign when I lived in Los Angeles - and these words sound just like the man I knew. Do not throw religion in his face and let it be a private relationship each person has (or doesn't have) with his beliefs. He was a humanist in the finest sense of that word.

    ArLyne Diamond, Ph.D.
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  • Posted by Mamaemma 3 years, 9 months ago
    Wow. wouldn't you love to hear this today?
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    • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
      Yes I would from a Republican presidential candidate. The religious right has done nothing to further freedom.
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      • Posted by jtrikakis 3 years, 9 months ago
        "The religious right has done nothing to further freedom." You are correct, but true Christian believers have and do it everyday.
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        • 10
          Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
          Really, name one thing.
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          • -3
            Posted by jtrikakis 3 years, 9 months ago
            If you use a hospital, public schools, and a major university such Harvard or Yale it was Christians whom founded and built those institutions. It was Christians from the North and before than England whom worked to stop slavery. In the modern era, the Christians church is work silently in almost every country to help bring freedom, at the often cost to their won well being. Just to be clear, all laws against it citizens are created not by the Christian church, but the pagan government within their country. There will be time when all Christians will be no more that is a fact we look forward.
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            • Posted by Zenphamy 3 years, 9 months ago
              Nonsense.
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              • -4
                Posted by jtrikakis 3 years, 9 months ago
                To you maybe, not to me
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                • Posted by Zenphamy 3 years, 9 months ago
                  When did christians establish hospitals and schools? I'm pretty sure that both Aristotle and Plato both had schools quite awhile before christians came into being and I think it was the Persians that first started hospitals.
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                  • -3
                    Posted by jtrikakis 3 years, 9 months ago
                    You could do some self-study and find out. It is true the education and medical care was around before the term Christians was established, but what Christians did was make it available to as many people as possible. In the US universities such Harvard and Yale started out as Christian schools. Funny how far they fallen since abandoned their roots. I will make this final point and that is its not my goal to convert anyone to anything. It's my purpose to tell the truth based on Jesus direction. I maybe a minority, but so was Ayn in her day.
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                    • Posted by Zenphamy 3 years, 9 months ago
                      I didn't make the claim and I'm personally not really interested enough to know when christians did anything, more than I already know. And I seldom if ever make claims or stand alone assertions that can't be verified or evaluated and tested by someone else. And certainly not based on beliefs of magic and mysticism. I sincerely hope this is indeed, your final point, though I doubt that.
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                    • Posted by plusaf 3 years, 9 months ago
                      Ah, the lab standard example of cults and zealotry...
                      "It's my purpose to tell the truth based on Jesus direction. I maybe a minority, but so was Ayn in her day."

                      Yep, and I felt the same way about Werner Erhard and 'est' for several years after I found that it was a wonderful enhancement to my life and my relationships and my thinking.

                      Then I got over it, lived by many of the tenets and suggestions and have had a wonderful life.

                      My step-grandson, 14, wanted to watch the video about L. Ron Hubbard, Dianetics and Scientology and I watched most of it with him.

                      Erhard used a lot of the same 'mind-fucking' techniques as Hubbard did, but apparently never collected as much wealth or properties for the Organization as Hubbard and his followers.

                      J, you can spread The Word as much as you like, but yes, you'd also better be ready for some pushback, and not all of it gentle or pleasant.

                      WT folks get a LOT of 'fun' when they sell to me. Usually an hour or two of me asking them questions they can't or don't want to explore.

                      ...One of my favorite outdoor sports.

                      I'm VERY lucky I took the est Training and grateful for what I got from it, but I'm also happy I'm no longer the 'est-hole' I was.
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            • Posted by Lucky 3 years, 9 months ago
              From my reading I am not aware that any Christian denomination in the US, even the north, was against slavery, I am willing to be enlightened if wrong if there was some small group - before anti-slavery became fashionable. It was quit common for ministers of religion to own slaves, typical of that economic class.
              In England the anti-slavery movement was secular, only when a momentum had built-up did some of the churches join.
              Today, in England, churches allow Muslim preachers to speak from the pulpit. Everywhere, except for the religious right, Christians are major supporters of collectivist social and political policies, and are uncritical supporters, and leaders, of the new religion of carbon change green crap.
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              • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
                You might want to make a trip to the library and read about the origins of the abolitionist movement and the Underground Railroad.
                American Quakers were long-time opponents of slavery. The Methodist, Presbyterian, Congregationalist and Baptist Churches took lead roles in the abolitionist movement; many stops along the Underground railroad were churches.
                Note also the role of Black churches of various denominations in the northern states in the Abolitionist Movement. They have not been given the credit they are due until recently. A good place to learn their story is Timothy McCarthy and John Stauffer, Prophets of Protest, New York: The New Press, 2006.
                Check into the driving force of Great Britain's abolitionist movement, William Wilberforce and the background of the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833.
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              • Posted by Kittyhawk 3 years, 9 months ago
                The Quakers opposed slavery starting in the 1700s. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quakers_in_...
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                • Posted by Lucky 3 years, 9 months ago
                  prospera omnes sibi indicant
                  Success is claimed by all. Tacitus. probably from Euripides

                  When the tide of opinion changed and slavery was abolished, many claimed the credit. The religious being the most organized make the loudest claim. Undoubtedly William Wilberforce was a big player but so were many of no particular denomination or religious conviction. Those who really can take major credit were the Quakers, religious dissenters banned from public life who campaigned against slavery from the beginning. Whether the Quakers took their convictions from the bible or the enlightenment can be argued., it was not from the churches around them.
                  ok slight revision of my opinion.
                  What Christians think and do is of declining importance as except for the religious right and maybe Quakers, they are moving themselves over to the new religion , Allah, Marx and Gaia are the new trinity. I think one of those will prevail.

                  Kittyhawk and jtrikakis - Thanks for the sources.

                  Even more off topic- lumping dbh and me together as 'radical atheists' is fighting talk!
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                • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                  Based on the enlightenment, not christianity.
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                  • Posted by Kittyhawk 3 years, 9 months ago
                    Are you saying that the Quakers were inspired by the Enlightenment and not by Christianity in their abolitionist stance? I would doubt that, but please let me know if you have any evidence.
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                  • -1
                    Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
                    Are you seriously that...

                    I just shake my head at the ignorant things I've heard you say today. Wake up and learn your history. If you have never heard of William Wilberforce, then I forgive you for your statement.

                    If you have, then I blame your absolutely hypocritical claim to be "objective". You aren't interested in facts, or learning, you're interested in furthering your own preconceived agenda.

                    What are you, a climate scientist? A liberal maybe?
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              • -2
                Posted by jtrikakis 3 years, 9 months ago
                Might want to get to know about this great man -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Wil...

                Also I suggest understanding this type of church -< https://carm.org/apostasy-christian-chur...
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                • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                  And the ten commandments allow slavery - not to mention that slavery properly defined is when you do not own yourself. Christianity has never preached that you own yourself.
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                • Posted by plusaf 3 years, 9 months ago
                  Interesting links... the first one at Wikipedia describes a conversion-zealot, which happens A LOT when someone gets sucked into a belief system different or even diametrically opposed to their prior beliefs.... witness all the 'good kids' leaving the US to fight for ISIS...

                  The second link, to me, a fairly non-militant atheist, looks like little more than what a friend calls a 'self-licking ice cream cone.' ... the Proverbial (pun intended) "it's true because the Bible says it's true and the Bible says it's true because it's true and it's in the Bible !"

                  ... for Believers who don't get dizzy from spinning circular logic on innocents... :)
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                • -3
                  Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
                  Don't you love these radical atheists? There's some good guys on here, but there's a sizable chunk that just downvote your stuff because they disagree with it and your DATA that you just showed them contradicts their atheism. Real "objectivist" of them.
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            • -3
              Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
              I love it, he brings up a ton of examples, and what does he get for it? His post gets downvoted...

              This community is becoming more toxic by the day.
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              • Posted by plusaf 3 years, 9 months ago
                No, barwick, maybe not toxic... just less inclined to agree with 'contributors' who employ lousy logic to try to get their points across.
                Socratic inquiry, one of my favorite indoor sports, just has a field day with religion as well as Political and Economic beliefs and their 'believers.'

                Often seen when the "Morality Card" is played in a discussion, per my 47th Law...

                http://www.plusaf.com/falklaws.htm#47th
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  • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
    After reading through the many comments, it seems few are actually addressing Mr. Goldwater's remarks. Many are taking the occasion to 'bash' religion in general, and Christianity specifically.
    Let's get back to Mr. Goldwater's remarks.
    The United States has a rich heritage of religious leaders involved in political debate extending back to the founding of the first colonies.
    It has been said, rightly, that our revolution was born from the sermons of many preachers, expounding on individual rights from their pulpits. Religious leaders aided our success in the revolution, and were at the forefront of the abolitionist movement, the right of women to vote and the Civil Rights movement.
    Religious leaders- priests, rabbis, ministers- have always enjoyed the same rights as every other American citizen to voice their opinion and vote. And it would be wrong to suggest that their rights of free speech cannot be exercised from the pulpit.
    At the time Mr. Goldwater made these remarks, some religious leaders had banded together to form Political Action Committees intent of forcing their moral interpretation and views on variety of topics on political figures. A powerful political bloc, they were threatening candidates who did not, as Mr. Goldwater said, follow "their position 100 percent".
    Mr. Goldwater rightly protested the undue influence these self- appointed arbiters of morality.
    As Conservatives and Libertarians, we hold- as did Mr. Goldwater, the Founding Fathers and others, that we alone are the masters of our lives and our beliefs.
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  • Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
    Sad thing about Senator Goldwater is, those religious beliefs are the same ones espoused by our forefathers. Not forced submission to a religious group (or any religion at all), but government encouragement of "that which you ought to do", and government discouragement of that which you ought not to do.

    Case in point, Government TODAY claims:
    - Fat is bad for you
    - Smoking is bad for you
    - Bacon is evil
    - You should eat plenty of whole grains
    - etc...

    All of this is based on supposed science, all has people that disagree with it, and all of it (well, except the smoking one) is a load of horse crap and has been proven so. But, it is what it is, I don't mind them pushing it with a very little bit of my own money.

    However, long ago, our government USED to affirm that:
    - Sex outside of marriage is bad for you
    - Having children out of wedlock is detrimental to the children
    - Divorce is harmful to all involved and should be avoided if at all possible
    - Homosexuality is outside the norm, but we won't arrest consenting adults
    - Soldiers ought to have free access to chaplains of their own faith while serving in the armed forces, and those chaplains are free to preach as God calls them.
    etc...

    All of the above is based on the Word of God, has withstood the test of time, and has not been rebuked. Of course there are people who oppose them, but they have no ground to stand on.

    Point in all of this is... our Government at one point espoused these principles. They didn't enforce them, they just encouraged them. Today, we do quite the opposite. And do you think the state of the family and the individual in this nation is better today than it was 100+ years ago? Neglecting technological advances, it's far far worse.
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    • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
      Wonderful revisionist history. It was Natural Rights and reason that built the U.S., Great Britain, and science and technology. Christianity is responsible for the dark ages, ignorance, superstition, wars, and burning people at the stake.
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      • Posted by  $  JCLanier 3 years, 9 months ago
        I love you too db!

        Freedom in a more general sense is having the right to choose our own direction and accepting the accountability that all these choices entail.

        Politics and religion should remain separate from each other. First, politics/government is a public matter. It is a shared communal, state and national duty/responsibility that every citizen should participate in; religion, on the other hand, is a personal and private matter which remains the choice/decision of the individual.
        Private religion should never be forced on public government and public government should never interfere with private religion.


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      • -5
        Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
        Excuse me? Revisionist history? I think you should re-read some real history before you go making that claim. I believe it was Benjamin Franklin, one of the least religious of the founders, who said "I have lived, sir, a long time. And the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid?"

        And later, that same Franklin:
        "Before I sit down, Mr. President, I will suggest another matter; and I am really surprised that it has not been proposed by some other member at an earlier period of our deliberations. I will suggest, Mr. President, that propriety of nominating and appointing, before we separate, a chaplain to this Convention, whose duty it shall be uniformly to assemble with us, and introduce the business of each day by and address to the Creator of the universe, and the Governor of all nations, beseeching Him to preside in our council, enlighten our minds with a portion of heavenly wisdom, influence our hearts with a love of truth and justice, and crown our labors with complete and abundant success!"

        Another version of the same, written by James Madison, who says he wrote it as read from Franklin's own handwriting:

        I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth- that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings, that "except the Lord build the House they labour in vain that build it." I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without his concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the Builders of Babel: We shall be divided by our little partial local interests; our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall become a reproach and bye word down to future ages. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing Governments be Human Wisdom and leave it to chance, war and conquest.

        I therefore beg leave to move, that henceforth prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven, and its blessings on our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning before we proceed to business, and that one or more of the Clergy of the City be requested to officiate in that service.

        And, considering Alexander Hamilton, the speaker at the time, utterly despised this suggestion and openly ridiculed it, the entire rest of the assembly blatantly ignored his impious remarks, seconded Benjamin Franklin's motion, and carried the measure unanimously.

        So, don't give me this crap about how human wisdom built this country. You want to build a country on human wisdom, you get the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, Vietnam, Cuba, Ethiopia, East Germany, etc.
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        • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
          So some founders were christians. So what? What does this have to do with the success of the US or England? Nazi Germany was very religious...you'll say "not real christians", which is a lame no true scottsman argument. Ethiopia, huh?
          The rest are communist revolutions, which happen to also be anti-religion. This is a wholly inadequate and inappropriate argument to assert 1) that this is the only was a non-religious country can succeed, and 2) that the US therefore succeeded based on christianity. Do you write for the Watchtower?

          How about Iran? This country was refounded on a religious revolution. Muslims are real believers. Some will kill themselves for their beliefs. Oh yes, that is the wrong religion...mine is the right one...

          I don't understand why you think Ayn Rand advocates would support any of this.
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          • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
            You forget that Hitler and his thugs systematically intimidated, imprisoned and killed many religious leaders as part of his takeover. There was a massive effort to rewrite history to show that Christ was not Jewish and was not born in the middle-east. Instead they insisted he was born in Britain and that the Jews had high jacked Christianity.
            They tried to install a new, national religion, based on pseudo historical interpretations of the religions of ancient Germanic tribes.
            In many churches, likenesses of Christ were removed, replaced by Hitler's portrait.
            Too many church leaders in Germany remained silent until it was too late. Perhaps you've heard of Friedrich Niemöller, or read his famous quote:
            When the Nazis came for the communists,
            I remained silent;
            I was not a communist.
            When they locked up the social democrats,
            I remained silent;
            I was not a social democrat.
            When they came for the trade unionists,
            I did not speak out;
            I was not a trade unionist.
            When they came for the Jews,
            I remained silent;
            I wasn't a Jew.
            When they came for me,
            there was no one left to speak out.
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            • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
              Sure Hitler was not your kind of christian.

              You realize many passages in the bible are not from the original scriptures...right? "Let he who has not sinned cast the first stone", while wise, has nothing to do with something Jesus said.

              Your note is an excellent example of how religion can be manipulated and used to control people on a massive scale. The inquisition is another. Persecution and murder of mormons and amish are others. Presently, persecution of gays and people the church deems promiscuous are others. The bible is full of interesting thoughts, some are wise. The bible is also full of errors, which are not in the original scriptures, due to rewriting, or simply lost information. The bible is one book of thought among thousands to be used to develop objective ideas doe social behavior. It is not more than that.

              If one seeks to assert religion is a foundation for how we must behave, one has all the task in front of them to demonstrate 1) its veracity and 2) its fundamental value as a basis for legislation or to otherwise limit people's freedoms. There is no such hurdle to maintain freedom.
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              • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
                Though he was born of Catholic parents, Hitler was neither Catholic nor affiliated with any other religion.
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                • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
                  So why was he rewriting history to show that Jesus wasn't a Jew?

                  You mean no religion will claim Hitler is one of them? ... How convienent. There is little question Hitler would claim he was a christian.
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                  • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
                    Hitler recognized the power of religion and wanted to channel it into blind obedience to him and his dogma.
                    Restoring ancient Germanic sites and rewriting tradition and history were just tools for him to mislead the people. Similarly, his henchmen forged documents and planted phony artifacts to show the 'evil lies' of the Jews. Many have been exposed, but some continue to circulate.
                    And no, Hitler did not claim any religion. He openly admired the hold that religion- specifically the Catholic Church- had on believers and he and his henchman tried to emulate that.
                    While Hitler thought it best to wait until after victory was assured, his henchman began demanding that Naziism become the state religion. Hanns Kerrl, Minister of Church Affairs, went so far as to claim "Adolf Hitler is the true Holy Ghost!"
                    The Nazi hierarchy couldn't decide whether to promote a new version of Christianity incorporating their beliefs, something they called "positive Christianity", or to develop an entirely new, Nazi creed from a mixture of pagan Germanic mythology and metaphysics. Either way this 'religion' was to inspire awe, subservience and adoration for Hitler.
                    As Dr. Robert Ley, head of the German Labor Front, told a group of Hitler youth, "We believe on this earth solely in Adolf Hitler.... We believe that God has sent us Adolf Hitler."
                    To your point, I doubt that many would want to claim Hitler today as one of their own. I am not sure how you define "little question"; however the facts are clear; they not only question, but refute the specious claim that he was a Christian. Beyond that, we can agree that it is inconvenient for Hitler to now "claim he was a Christian".
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                    • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
                      It seems you are right. Far be it from me to deny that. He did not personally claim are religion.

                      He used religion like most, as a tool to manipulate people. Since the population of Germany was christian, he let them assume the nazi party was. He convinced the pope and others he was a "believer".

                      So, how was Hitler using christianity as a means to garner support from the catholic church and to gain control over the country different that this thread, asserting that it is christian values that have provided the growth and "goodness"in the US? He says Jews are bad. I suspect Hitler had no use of gays either. Now...read back to the beginning of this thread...gays and sex out of wedlock are bad...

                      The Westboro Baptist Church is one extreme, and this thread is another on exactly the same vector, for exactly the same reasons.

                      There are a litany of examples of bad behavior on the part of christianity. It seems hitler just used it to manipulate fools, but wasn't really a believer. Still not a very good example in favor of christiany.

                      So...let's move on to
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                      • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
                        If you have the opportunity, look into the classification system (the Nazis were, after all, methodical Germans) that was developed for the various 'enemies of the state' and 'misfits' rounded up by the Nazis and sent to death camps.
                        I have seen a chart, in matrix form, showing how each person was categorized. We are all familiar with the yellow Star of David badge for Jews. But there were badges for each category. For example there was a badge for Jews, a badge for homosexuals, but also a badge for Jewish Homosexuals.
                        They imprisoned Socialists (even though they themselves were Socialists, and the German Socialist Party had helped Hitler win power and joined the Nazis in forming his first, coalition government), Communists, Gypsies, anyone with birth defects, the insane, members of the religions that opposed them, among others.
                        One looks back and asks, how could this happen in Germany, at that time probably the most liberal and best educated of all European nations.
                        Sadly, it did happen there. And it could happen here if we are not vigilant about our rights.
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                • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                  It you understood anything about philosophy you would see that Hitler and Christianity are very closely aligned. Both believe reality is fungible, both believe that reason is impertinent, both believe in altruism. The difference are superficial.
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                  • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
                    No, I do not profess to know philosophy. I can only base my views concerning "Hitler and Christianity" on the recorded facts.
                    If there is, as you suggest, only a "superficial" difference, I would suggest you ignore the basic beliefs of both systems (which are undeniably different) and are instead trying to compare the outward trappings and ceremony of Christianity with those of the pseudo-religion the Nazis tried to create as a means of controlling the German people.
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              • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                The common excuse - that's not real christianity - that's not real communism, but the closer they get and the harder they try to get to the pure the more people die.
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        • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
          Very nice sophistry, but short of facts. The US founders were clear they were building a country based on reason and Natural Rights. Most of them were Deists including Franklin, who said so in his autobiography.

          In fact all the countries you mention were built on the ethics of Christianity. Not to mention the dark ages.

          It is worthless arguing with someone who believes in revealed truth. One more outrageous comment like these and I will hide your posts.
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          • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
            Why quibble whether our rights are given us by Nature or by Nature's God?
            As to the Founders, you might want to revisit your source for the statement that "Most of them were Deists...."
            A few examples, in their own words:
            John Adams: "The Christian religion is, above all the religions that ever prevailed or existed in ancient or modern times, the religion of wisdom, virtue, equity and humanity."
            Samuel Adams: "I . . . [rely] upon the merits of Jesus Christ for a pardon of all my sins."
            Charles Carroll: "On the mercy of my Redeemer I rely for salvation and on His merits, not on the works I have done in obedience to His precepts."
            Alexander Hamilton: "I have a tender reliance on the mercy of the Almighty, through the merits of the Lord Jesus Christ.”
            John Hancock: "Sensible of the importance of Christian piety and virtue to the order and happiness of a state, I cannot but earnestly commend to you every measure for their support and encouragement."
            Patrick Henry: "Being a Christian… is a character which I prize far above all this world has or can boast."
            John Jay: "Mercy and grace and favor did come by Jesus Christ, and also that truth which verified the promises and predictions concerning Him and which exposed and corrected the various errors which had been imbibed respecting the Supreme Being, His attributes, laws, and dispensations."
            Thomas Jefferson: "I am a real Christian – that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus Christ."
            Benjamin Rush: "The Gospel of Jesus Christ prescribes the wisest rules for just conduct in every situation of life."
            Roger Sherman: "God commands all men everywhere to repent. He also commands them to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and has assured us that all who do repent and believe shall be saved…."
            Are you beginning to sense a pattern? I can go on, but don't take my word for it: do you own research.
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          • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
            "Here is my Creed," Franklin wrote to Ezra Stiles), the Calvinist president of Yale College. "I believe in one God, Creator of the Universe. That He governs it by His Providence. That he ought to be worshipped. That the most acceptable Service we render to him, is doing Good to his other Children. That the Soul of Man is immortal, and will be treated with Justice in another Life respecting its Conduct in this ... As for Jesus of Nazareth ... I think the system of Morals and Religion as he left them to us, the best the World ever saw ... but I have ... some Doubts to his Divinity; though' it is a Question I do not dogmatism upon, having never studied it, and think it is needless to busy myself with it now, where I expect soon an Opportunity of knowing the Truth with less Trouble."
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          • -1
            Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
            Oh no, please don't hide my posts, what EVER would I do? Sigh...

            so objectivist of you, to ignore facts that contradict your PREconceptions... not that you would have those, since you only look at things objectively, right?
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            • Posted by plusaf 3 years, 9 months ago
              Sorry, B, but again, as an atheist who enjoys the Socratic inquiry process and Critical Thinking, I've seen no religion that isn't circular in its logic and belief system.

              Most religious leaders proclaim that their God Created Our Universe "because nothing else could."

              Wonderful logic. For a five-year-old, but not something that comes out of the cerebral cortex of an adult brain. Circular logic as its basis.
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        • Posted by jdg 3 years, 9 months ago
          Even if that is all true, the notion that it is the cause of our country's good fortune doesn't pass the giggle test.
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          • Posted by BlackBeaver 3 years, 9 months ago
            Why quibble about the source of our liberty? Surely you will agree that the recognition of individual rights and individual responsibility- both basic to Christian teachings- created an environment where individuals could thrive, setting the stage for our success.
            No other nation on Earth at the time, and few since, have enjoyed a society as open as the United States.
            Sadly, beginning in the early 20th century, Progressives have- with some success- supplanted our God-given (call it natural, if you like) individual liberty with centralized control reminiscent of the worst Kings, Princes and Dictators.
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        • Posted by CircuitGuy 3 years, 9 months ago
          "You want to build a country on human wisdom"
          If God doesn't intervene in our world at all, isn't human wisdom all we have?
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          • Posted by plusaf 3 years, 9 months ago
            Yes, but only if you put the word Wisdom in Quotes!

            Like Natural Rights and the Bill of Rights... I can't understand why more folks can't understand that ALL such 'rights' exist ONLY in that people AGREE that they ARE "rights" and that, to be permitted to live in their society and culture, FOLLOWING the Belief that those Rights should/must be Followed is the price everyone must pay to participate in the society or culture!

            Folks that don't agree to follow those Rules have it made very clear that By Consensus and Agreement, a gang of Others will arrest them and remove them from active participation IN that society and culture.

            Natural Rights?! Bullshit. The World operates from Agreement, and sometimes we humans agree to do stupid things.
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    • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
      Sex outside marriage is bad for you? Give me a break! The foolishness of that statement is all that has stood the test of time.
      Children without parents are a problem, but wedlock is irrelevant.
      Precisely what about homosexuality has stood the test of time? That they've always existed and harm no one...except the children abused by priests resorting to this for "no sex out of wedlock".
      The statement about soldier and chaplains basically says "We should have chaplains, but require nothing of the soldiers relative to them, and government shouldn't tell chaplains what to say." Ok, fine, just says "freedom of religion", not sure what mythical Word of God that comes from. That wisdom (like all wisdom) is purely of man.

      The problem with family and the individual is that religion has asserted its authority over this area of philosophy, and rejected objective philosophical analysis and argument (in favor of someone's definition of the word of god). In doing so, religion has made people dependent on it for this, and unable to evaluate and discuss it themselves like a drug dealer. Coupled with socialism's removal of responsibility, religions have caused the present lack of values you find so concerning.
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      • -5
        Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
        Whatever, you can feel it's a foolish statement. Everyone I know who's had the unfortunate experience of having had sex with multiple partners, only to finally end up in a truly committed relationship for decades, has told me that if they could do one thing over again, they'd go back and not sleep around. Now, maybe the problem is we view marriage as such a big scary thing. In all honesty, Love is something you have to learn to do, and decide to do for the rest of your life, barring some massive unforseen circumstances (abuse, etc). But we in our culture view Love as something that happens to you, you "fall" into it. Not the case. You "fall" into lust, you have great feelings, yeah, awesome, they're there to facilitate you getting into a relationship with someone. LOVE is something completely different, and it must be something you choose to do every day for the rest of your life.

        Everything about homosexuality has stood the test of time. Go look up the life expectancy differences between heterosexuals and homosexuals. The differences are smaller for lesbians vs straight women, but still startling, and FAR from statistically irrelevant.

        That's not to say that all gays end up living shorter lives. My grandfather's brother who was gay just died in his late 80's, really nice guy, just saying that all studies have shown homosexuality on average reduces life expectancy by between 10 and 30 years. Even just say 10, maybe there's something there that should be investigated, considering smoking lowers life expectancy by less on average?

        The reason religion has asserted its authority over the family and the individual is that, well, I don't expect you to believe this, but the Creator already gave us the answers in His Word. But besides that, if you don't believe His Word, believe the results. It's worked. For thousands of years, it's worked. When people follow the Biblical principles outlined for the family, for sex lives, etc, they are, on average, much more happy and fulfilled.
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        • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
          I expect arguing with you on this subject is a waste of time.

          You can now change your statement about "Everyone you know who has had the "unfortunate" experience of sex with multiple partners..." regretting sleeping around. I have had sex with multiple partners, and regret nothing. In fact, I wish I had done more of it before committing to my first marriage, which failed. Further, I couldn't be happier that my first marriage failed, since it brought me to my present, excellent relationship. So you should no longer make this foolish statement. If you like, I'll introduce you to as many people as you like that feel similarly. Maybe you should meet some people that haven't been brainwashed yet.

          You will need to point me to real evidence of homosexuals lifespans being significantly shorter than heterosexuals, and specifically data supporting it is shorter on average than smokers.

          As far as biblically-guided people feeling happier, I suspect no human is happier than my Labrador Retriever, who similarly worships me with considerably more evidence of my existence, behavior and desires.
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          • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
            You might be interested in the social science of the matter, but there is increasing evidence that those who sleep around prior to getting married are more likely to get divorced. It's the "poisoning the well" theory, and it has held up pretty well to scrutiny.

            There are more recent studies focused on the psychological effects to women which find that because women tend to be more emotionally invested in relationships (including the sexual desires), that even casual hookups create significant barriers to future fulfilling emotional relationships and lower quality physical relationships (since women's sex drive is much more emotional than men's).

            Another issue is that when you have sex outside of wedlock, you take the real risk of children. Children deserve to be born into a committed, stable relationship and the social science on that is incontrovertible: children born into homes without fathers form the predominant populations of our prison systems and high school dropouts.

            I'll also just for good measure toss in the prevalence of STD's (and that you can only get them by sleeping around). The CDC gives actual infection rates and they are sobering. When you get down to reading the effects of many of those diseases (few of which are curable), it really puts a chill on the whole notion of "casual sex". What I find most interesting is that most of them cause infertility.

            As to the homosexual thing, you might want to peruse the CDC's statistics. HIV infection is 37x higher for a male homosexual than a male heterosexual. You can also look up Herpes, gonorrhea, syphilis, Hepatitis C, and others.

            Having sex outside of marriage and commitment is playing Russian Roulette. The traditional enjoinder is simply that: a warning about the potential consequences. Heed them or not at your own risk, but the science becomes clearer and clearer every day: there is real value to monogamy.
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            • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
              I suspect the studies failed to control for a number of factors. I knew that I would stay with my wife before I was married (short of her going crazy - or crazer). It is about whether you make an intellectual commitment or your crossing your fingers as you enter into the agreement (not the vows)
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              • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
                You are welcome to question the studies. Please post your observations. The ones I looked at were peer-reviewed studies that appeared to have covered their bases, but that is not to say I am a field expert.


                There is no question that commitment plays a big role, but commitment to what in particular? And how does one see that commitment playing out and over what time frame? Do both partners have the same goals and do they both agree on the basics of how to get there? Are you willing to allow for your partner's idiosyncrasies? Can you agree on financial wants and needs and stay within your means? Do you have the same goals regarding children and their upbringing? Do you both support the other in things that are important to them? Most importantly, do you have a framework for working out all of the above?
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                • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
                  Sure. Downvote me without actually responding. You can't argue with the post so you engage in petty actions like this. Shameful and pathetic.

                  Objectivism is about reality, is it not? Can you prove that sleeping around makes one a better person and more able to commit to long-term relationships? If not, anyone with any kind of intellectual integrity will say "in the absence of any proof supporting my position, I should at least take a look at the other side."

                  I find it more than a bit hypocritical of those on this forum not to follow their own creed: examine the evidence and follow where it leads - even if it is to conclusions that differ with preconceived notions.
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                  • Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
                    That's what they do blarman, look at my posts on this thread. -5 some of them, seriously? Because someone doesn't agree with it, they downvote it. Childish.

                    Now, there's some folks on here who are atheist and aren't idiots about it, but there's a growing number on here who are just plain hypocritical and childish.
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                    • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
                      Yes, and it is incredibly disappointing. I expect it from a liberal. I expect a true Objectivist, on the other hand, to examine the evidence BEFORE jumping to conclusions, or at least to being willing to admit there may be some validity to the other side of the story. They don't even have to agree - all they have to do is say, "there may be something to what you say, but I'm going to reserve judgement at this point."

                      Instead, they jump to a conclusion and then feel that they must defend it out of fear that somehow others will look down on them for even considering a change in their position. To me, that willingness to change one's position based on new evidence should be the hallmark of any true Objectivist: hypothesis -> test -> evidence -> either confirmation or rejection. Rinse and repeat.

                      Fear of change, arrogance over position - these are all illogical, but especially heinous coming from anyone claiming to live by the product of the mind rather than the heart.
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                      • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                        How very interesting. You are only interested in evidence that supports you absurd interpretation of christianity (just like the liberals) - one of the most evil philosophies to exist that is totally inconsistent with Objectivism. You are not interested in discussing this you are interested in Prosthelytizing.

                        You christians go around spreading you nonsense everywhere but not here. You will be down voted and hidden if you continue your Prosthelytizing.
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            • Posted by jabuttrick 3 years, 9 months ago
              Is this study supposedly showing that those who do not have sex before marriage (i.e. virgins) are less likely to get divorced from this century? Seriously, how did they find these people?
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          • -3
            Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
            Also, herein lies part of the problem inherent in our culture.

            You think that your lack of having "done more of it before committing" would have improved your chances at a successful marriage. *nothing* could be further from the truth.

            There are ways (besides God's way) to have a successful marriage, and, sometimes, you can trip over and stumble on a way that works for you. But there is only one way that has been proven time and again, and that's God's way. We're imperfect human beings, so we fail at it all the time, but better to try and fail at the perfect way, than stumble in the dark and hope to find a way that randomly works.
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            • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
              It is precisely this line of nonsense that alienates mainstream people and makes republican candidates un-electable.

              You guys should team up with the muslims and split an area. They'll govern their half with sharia law, and you guys can govern with christian law. It will be great. The wealthy muslims can "vacation" in your country and drink, and you can collaborate on how to torture people who don't obey.

              The rest of us can objectively analyze, discuss and socially evolve, and be well rid of unnecessary dogma.

              The nonsense about "stumbling in the dark" is based on the assumption that it is actually dark and that YOU know where the light is. It is dim, not dark, and the light from science gets brighter all the time. The church would be pleased to keep thinking the sun revolves around the earth. It wasn't god that explained that it doesn't.
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              • Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
                You know what? I'm sick of this. I'm sick of your atheist crap, I'm sick of all of you whining and complaining about what God says, and being so COMPLETELY hypocritical, claiming to be objective, but then utterly refusing to look at the facts because it is opposite to what you PRECONCEIVE to be true, before you were exposed to those facts.

                Not every person on this board, but a solid chunk of it is a bunch of complete hypocrites, and I'm sick of it. I'm tired of dealing with you, your stupid straw man arguments that LIBERALS use all the time, claiming somehow we're even REMOTELY related to the most disgusting religion on this planet, Islam. YOU are a liar, that is what you are. I'm sick of it.

                ALL I have done on this board is explain what the historical Christian faith has adhered to for thousands of years, and what Judaism has taught for thousands of years before that. A system of beliefs and teachings that have repeatedly proven themselves time and time again for thousands of years, in the exact situations we've talked about. Yet, you refuse to acknowledge that fact because it disagrees with your world view.

                Know what, I'm done. I'm done dealing with people like you. If you truly are stupid enough to believe that Christianity is in ANY way even remotely like that disgusting religion of Islam, AND that four other people on this board are ignorant enough to "thumbs up" your crap, and consequently thumbs down mine, then fine. You can rot in your own filth. You lying hypocrite. I'm out of here. Don't say I didn't warn you.
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                • Posted by CircuitGuy 3 years, 9 months ago
                  " If you truly are stupid enough to believe that Christianity is in ANY way even remotely like that disgusting religion of Islam"
                  Wow. To me all the Abraham religions seem similar. Most people from all religious backgrounds claim to be moderates and embrace pluralism.
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                  • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
                    Then I would seriously suggest that you study the two. They are nothing alike. The evidence is all around us. You don't see militant Christians beheading 150 Muslims in Africa. You don't see Christians capturing Muslim women and selling them as sex slaves. You don't see Christians as 99 out of the top 100 terrorist groups on the FBI's watch list.

                    A Christian allows you to not be a Christian. A Muslim will force you to convert, enslave you, or kill you.
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        • Posted by plusaf 3 years, 9 months ago
          Bummer... you don't know me, and I'm SO glad I had sex with a LOT of women (dozens and dozens) before my first divorce was final and before I met the woman with whom I had premarital sex before WE were married, and with whom I will celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary in two months.

          Don't trust or rely on ANY generalizations (it's a good idea, even if you see the humor in the assertion.)

          As for gays and lifespans, I guess if you include all gays who have gotten AIDS and died of it or complications, the average lifespan might be shorter, but if you don't have an equivalent forcing influence for heteroes, you're just begging the question.

          Or as the old saying goes, "Married couples do NOT live longer... it just Feels Like It."

          Like any other statistical 'argument' you need to ask what data were deliberately left out in order to prove your point...

          Which is what my 7th Law is all about...

          http://www.plusaf.com/falklaws.htm#7th
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        • -1
          Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
          Annnd here come the God-hating trolls, down-voting my posts. Does it never end?
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          • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
            ...but here comes you telling us all what to do about premarital sex and homosexuality.

            How would you expect a site filled with Objectivists and thinking people to respond to such nonsense.
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            • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
              There are two sides to any debate, and anyone of any intellectual integrity is going to look at BOTH before making any kind of decision.

              I can show you evidence of how disastrous premarital sex is in the black population as published by Thomas Sowell. Prior to 1950, black out-of-wedlock births and white out-of-wedlock births were at the same rate. So was the incarceration rate and the high school graduation rate. Since then, black out-of-wedlock births have skyrocketed (and white's have increased modestly). And correspondingly black graduation rates are down and incarceration rates are up - way up. Obviously, pre-marital sex isn't working for the black population - and society as a whole.

              I've already given you the other evidence especially regarding STD's as other real, scientific evidence about the consequences of extra-marital sexual relations. And it correlates directly and indisputably (because it doesn't spread any other way) with the permissiveness of society.

              Now I ask you to show me any evidence that says this behavior is _better_ for individuals and society as a whole.

              Seriously. Don't claim to be an Objectivist and harp on and on about showing proof when it is done and you choose to reject it.
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              • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
                Premarital sex issues with STDs and out of wedlock children as a problem prior to the 1950s is an argument for better health and prophylactic education, not an argument against premarital sex in general.

                Seriously Blarman, as usual, you have made up your mind and are manipulating the data to support your argument. Do not accuse us of this. The concept of prohibiting sex out of wedlock is completely unnatural, unhealthy and supported only by those clinging to religion. Normal people have long realized that sex is natural, and absolutely need not only be limited to procreation with the consequent concerns of parenthood.
                I'll go find articles when I get home. I'm not looking up technical studies on sex while in the office. This is a discussion that should've been put to bed 50 years ago.
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                • -1
                  Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
                  "Premarital sex issues with STDs and out of wedlock children ... is ... not an argument against premarital sex in general."

                  See Sowell's study. He finds that there is a very direct correlation. Deny the evidence at your own peril. Or do you deny that the single largest correlating identifier among inmates is the lack of a father in the home?

                  "you have made up your mind and are manipulating the data to support your argument..."

                  Then present me data that backs up your side of the argument. So far, I've seen NOTHING presented to support your assertion but your own opinions. Not one iota of data! Do I have an opinion? Yes. Is it unsubstantiated, however? No. Far from it as I have have shown. I've presented to you sociological and epidemiological studies that support my position. And just as telling, I've seen zero studies that show that premarital sex improves one's future. Who is being more irrational - the one whose opinion is based on evidence or the one who's only response is the red herring fallacy of crying "religion" - especially when no religious arguments were even brought up!

                  "The concept of prohibiting sex out of wedlock is completely unnatural, unhealthy and supported only by those clinging to religion."

                  The CDC's statistics on STD's and their rise in the population directly contradict such a claim. So do the sociological studies. I think you have the wrong definition for "unhealthy" at the very least. Or do you assert that STD's are _not_ contracted through sexual contact or that the rates of infection have _not_ been steadily on the rise since the 60's - not inconsequently the same time of the "sexual revolution" and destigmatization of extra-marital sex?

                  "Normal people have long realized..."

                  Straw man fallacy - among others. Such an assertion is to say that only people who arrive at your conclusion are worthy - that somehow you are the only one capable of coming to the "right" conclusion. An Objectivist doesn't predefine who can come to a conclusion nor do they predefine the outcome. Both of those are fallacies in and of themselves and deny the Objectivist's primary tool (logic). If you want to make your argument, show me the facts to support your point of view. One who has reality on their side has no need for name-calling or disparagement. Such are the refuges of the intellectually conflicted.
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                  • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
                    There is a major difference in the hurdle you and I need to overcome in our arguments. I seek to leave people free. You seek to limit people's freedom. The burden of proof is all yours.

                    If the argument is just academic (of course it didn't start that way), then I suppose I can be drawn in to respond. No idea who Sowell is. You'll have to point me to his biased conclusions.

                    Regarding STDs relating to sex outside marriage...You know, there is no air pollution on the moon either. Driving cars puts one infinitely more likely to be injured or killed in a car accident. Sure its true, if you have sex with more people, you'll run a greater chance of getting an STD...shocking! This is even worse without protection. STDs are the argument of an insurance salesman. This is statistics, not morality. One doesn't need references to argue math.

                    This is just so much limited, prudish raving from people who fear "promiscuity", not a bit different and with considerably weaker evidence than the fear liberals have in guns. You are afraid of it, because you are ignorant of it. Fear of gays is exactly the same.

                    Regarding no religion being brought up, this entire thread was predicated on religion. However, if you want to reduce the scope to just science and data, ok.

                    So what do you advocate in place of sex? I assume you then are a major proponent of either straight abstinence, early marriage or masturbation. Since the overwhelming result of excessive abstinence is buggered boys or dead postal workers, that is probably out. Early marriage generally results in divorce (personal experience as well). Therefore, I conclude you must be an advocate of masturbation, well ok then. Now perhaps we are to a middle ground. Since you and Barwick seem so keen on STDs, maybe we can expand the scope beyond vaginal sex. Would oral sex or external manual sex" be ok?

                    Health benefits of sex:
                    http://www.webmd.com/sex-relationships/g...
                    http://www.forbes.com/2003/10/08/cz_af_1...

                    Before you bring up anymore "studies" of problems from sex out of wedlock, the "facts" need to be corrected for education, drug use, income, etc, with a control and experiment...oh, yes, we are scientists here. Of course higher premarital sex exists among the poor, where wisdom may be lacking, prophylactics are not used, responsibilities are avoided, marriage often doesn't happen, drug use is rampant, health care is poor, life spans are low, STDs abound, on and on.

                    Since you presume to influence us and take our rights, you carry the burden of proof. Please do show us, and eliminate the noise and external factors from your "data".

                    My data? I sure feel a lot better after sex. I sleep wonderfully. I don't have any STDs, and never have. It doesn't hurt me chemically. It doesn't hurt my partner. Basically, it is a beautifully feeling, elimination of cholesterol and a little exercise. It is good for you. The sex I had before marriage was also great. I never felt negativity or remorse, and if I ever end up single again, I guarantee there will be premarital sex. Every close friend I can think of feels exactly the same (yes we talk about this stuff, really). This is data, at least data among a population largely of producers. What ridiculous cause-effect are you guys selling?

                    Intellectually conflicted? Sure...
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                    • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
                      "I seek to leave people free. You seek to limit people's freedom."

                      So let's engage in a little analogy: say driving a car. Do you put a five-year-old behind the wheel? Do you choose to drive into oncoming traffic? Do you just ignore the signals and road signs? And would you propose that this is the way EVERYONE drives? That is the argument for "unlimited" freedom and it is a clear fallacy. Can you not see what an obviously absurd argument that is?

                      Power and its exercise ALWAYS come with responsibility for proper use. Sex is no exception.

                      "This is statistics, not morality."

                      No, it is statistics that demonstrate the results of a particular moral stance. It is evidence of the test of a hypothesis. Nothing more, nothing less. That you would dismiss it is evidence of bias - not of a scientific approach to the matter. You show me scientific evidence supporting your position and you'll have a leg to stand on.

                      "Regarding no religion being brought up, this entire thread was predicated on religion. However, if you want to reduce the scope to just science and data, ok."

                      It wasn't me who was flinging around the claims of religious bigotry despite the obviously open can of worms in the post's title. Debates are all about assertion and evidence or rebuttal. Lack of evidence is in and of itself a rebuttal. I was simply pointing out that you were engaging in not only an unfounded assertion, but an ad hominem attack as well. A bigot is one who refuses to consider an alternative despite having evidence which favors that alternative. I ask you: what evidence has been presented and for which side of the argument to this point in the debate?

                      "So what do you advocate in place of sex?"

                      See the above analogy related to driving. I am not advocating that no one have sex, even though you intentionally misrepresent my position as such (and for which I docked you). Having sex is an irrevocable act with many consequences. It falls to any responsible individual to use that power with respect for those consequences.

                      The indiscriminate use of sex leads to higher STD rates. That is fact and one you even acknowledged. Abstention eliminates ALL chance of contracting an STD, does it not? The position you are taking is that the risk is worth a temporary endorphin rush. That is a value decision, but it should not overlook the severity of the consequences and the prevalence of each disease - many of which are communicable long before symptoms arise. And that is just the epidemiological side of the story.

                      Children are the result of sex. Indiscriminate sex leads to all kinds of sociological problems in children, as studies continue to prove. Children without their biological father AND biological mother in the home are at substantially higher risk themselves of perpetuating the cycle: bad grades, dropping out of high school, getting in trouble with the law, and their own illegitimate children. The effects cascade. Studies have also shown how futile efforts at "prophylactic education" have been - and not for lack of trying.

                      There is also a growing body of evidence regarding premarital sex (one of which I cited) showing the adverse effects it has on the future abilities of adults to form permanent relationships, and thus provide a stable home for children. This is aside from the emotional damage caused by broken relationships. Having personally seen the results of several types of broken home scenarios and the emotional (and sometimes physical) damage caused, I find it not only surprising, but astounding that anyone would advocate the behavior which dramatically increases the chances of such.

                      If the entire goal of creating a moral system is to identify and live by principles which endure from generation to generation, this seems to me to be a very clear cut case. It is frankly quite astounding to me that given the preponderance of evidence there is so much unfounded opposition.
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                      • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
                        Let's just stick to the first item, which is the real subject of this debate.

                        First driving a car by a five year old is neither consent among two adults, or the action or any adult. Neither is providing the button for a nuclear weapon to an infant. The consequences can be to separate bystanders, not consenting in the decision. This analogy has no relevance. An analogy is also a fallacy of logical argument. Quite interesting to see it in immediate response following chiding regarding the "strawman fallacy".

                        "Power and it exercise ALWAYS come with responsibility for proper use."

                        Power over another comes with special responsibilities...like driving a car. Power over ones self comes with self responsibility, just like what you eat, personal hygiene, what one chooses to study and freedom of speech. You are right (consensual) sex is no exception to power over one's self. There is no third party. It is no different than a personal hygiene decision shared between two consenting adults.

                        I let my friend try beers and wine from my glass all the time, and they often let me try theirs as well. We both consent. Some bodily fluids are exchanged. We variously get the advantage of trying before we elect to buy a full glass or bottle.

                        Please do explain the real tangible difference between sharing drinks and sex. Please note, in the case of sex, protection is generally employed among rational and foreign partners.

                        Let's just square away this simple part before you before you move on to your Watchtower sermon.

                        We are not talking about children yet. We are talking about sex, out of wedlock between two responsible adults. No 5yr olds. No IV drug users. No statistics on poor people without condoms. Children is a completely secondary issue... unless you seek to argue that either 1) intent or 2) possible consequences of actions should form the basis of legislation, just like "hate crime" regulations and gun control.

                        Goal of a "moral system"...yeah...Good luck with this one sweetie. Government isn't part of my moral system, and if it is part of yours, you should proceed directly to the republican party and skip the Gulch altogether.
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                  • -1
                    Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                    As usual you see what you want to see. This article points out that it is only the case for women who cohabitate multiple times before marriage and has no correlation in men. http://atavisionary.com/how-does-a-mans-... and the study http://atavisionary.com/premarital-sex-p...

                    This topic is inane and of very little significance in the big scheme of the world, but it does show your inability to focus on the topic at hand and your obsession with christian agenda, which is anti-reason and anti-individual - thus the focus on the family.
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                    • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
                      So it's okay for men to sleep around because we really don't care about the women? Wow. I hope khalling doesn't read that or you might be sleeping on the couch. What I found fascinating in your comment is that you acknowledged yourself that monogamy was going to be the way you chose in the end, but at first you rejected it. Very interesting indeed and more than a little ironic.

                      "it does show your inability to focus on the topic at hand"

                      So now you're going to devolve into ad hominem attacks? The topic of the post is "religion and politics" and YOU opened the window. And despite the obvious opening, I haven't ONCE used a religious posture in my comments. Not once - and in the face of all the unfounded accusations. ALL my arguments have come from published, scientific studies. You are the one claiming that "religion" (an incredibly vague term you twist and redefine as you wish) is holding me back, yet all I see is _evidence_ supporting a principle held by many faiths and civilizations for thousands of years. I find it logically compelling that two starkly different methods both arrived at the same conclusion and even more compelling that social studies have confirmed this wisdom. Which is the approach requiring more blind faith: the approach that is supported by evidence, or the one which isn't?
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                      • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                        The fact that you are obsessed with this topic is inane. Of all the problems in the world, this is what you think is worth spending time on?

                        You want to know what would really help out family relations, protecting property rights - which means eliminating the IRS, welfare, and the regulatory state. But no you going to focus on your god and the stupid commandments.

                        Most importantly by focusing on property rights and not the religious right, we would solve so many more problems. Religion on the right and left has been a disaster for freedom..
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            • Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
              ...but here comes me saying "hey guys, this has worked for thousands of years, might want to look into it". But, who am I to expect people who claim to be "objectivist" to actually look at data throughout history with an open mind... after all... it mentions that spooky "God" that you all hate so much.
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              • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
                What does "worked" mean exactly? Please explain which society(s) have succeeded for "thousands of years" using these principles to guide them.

                Clearly it wasn't the Greeks, Romans or Monguls.

                Maybe it was the christians burning people at the stake for heliocentrisism...or being gay...no it can't be. That was only like 600 yrs ago, and only 1,500 yrs before that there was no christianity. Therefore for it to be "thousands" (that's plural) it had to be the whole of recorded christianity. Was something like Luxemburg overwhelmingly successful and we are all just ignorant of it.
                Oh yeah, and back to that lifespan thing. What was the average lifespan back in those days before science came along and muddied everything up with nasty evil-u-tion, vaccinations antibiotics, nutrition, farming techniques and an economy? On the order of 35-40 yrs. Boy, I guess smoking or being gay has nothing on that, eh?
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                • Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
                  Um, I don't know, say Israel for thousands of years? How about Western Civilization? There's a good one.

                  I'm sure you are just not-informed of the fact that the foundations of modern science were built by Christians who looked at the world around them and, contrary to the thought at the time (that the world was all random chance, governed by random gods or fates or whatever different groups believed at the time across the globe), they realized that since God is eternal and never changing, that we should be able to discern absolute truths about our universe, and we can rely on those truths to provide repeatable results every time.

                  You know, minor, insignificant people like Johannes Kepler, Roger (and also Francis) Bacon, Leo the Mathematician, Nicole Oresme, William Turner, Newton, Albrecth von Haller, Copernicus, Galileo, thousands of others, oh, and... Robert Boyle, you might want to look him up.

                  But I'm sure you just didn't know about them, and aren't being "non-objectivist" and ignoring facts about them.
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                  • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 3 years, 9 months ago
                    Oh, yes Western Civilization. That is clearly unambiguous.

                    Give me a break with your point. You are arguing that chistianity and judaism is the foundation of all the advancements in western civilization. You have a long, long way to go to support that even religious scientists were driven to succeed by religion. So Robert Boyle (of Boyle's Law fame, no? Yes, I recall 10th grade chemistry) was a christian and a scientist? So what? So was Darwin. Telescopes were created by muslims. This provides no basis that islam or christianity drives scientific advancement, or are you willing to accept that most scientists today are atheists or agnostic somehow supports those philosophies?

                    I thought you decided you were sick of all us hypocritical, lying atheists last night. You're back now? Ok, let's get to it. You and Blarman can collaborate to educate us all in Sophistry.
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          • Posted by Zenphamy 3 years, 9 months ago
            I don't hate god(s). How could I possibly hate something that there is no reality or testable evidence of?
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            • -2
              Posted by barwick11 3 years, 9 months ago
              I'll bite...

              Don't be ignorant, the evidence is in front of your face every day.

              If an artist built a sculpture the size of a skyscraper, with intricate moving parts, and was one of the most beautiful sculptures ever made, you'd think that artist was quite possibly the best sculptor in history. And rightfully so.

              Yet, you look at creation in all of its beauty and try to explain it away so you don't have any responsibility to anyone other than yourself. To hold yourself up on a pedestal as if you, a human being, are the pinnacle of all that is in the entire universe. It makes you feel good, and no god is going to get in your way of doing so.

              So be it, that's how you feel, but don't claim that there's no evidence.
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              • Posted by Zenphamy 3 years, 9 months ago
                Show me some evidence I can test and replicate. Being in awe of, finding beauty in, and being amazed by the complexity of the universe and nature is what drives the mind and effort of men to experiment and discover the science that stands behind all of that. And by providing the results and repeatable proofs of their work to the rest of us, enables us to improve the lot of each of us and all men so that in the last century or so, we've increased our life spans from some 30 to 40 years to over 70, with less disease and starvation than at any other time.
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              • Posted by CircuitGuy 3 years, 9 months ago
                I see these as fallacies. Here's my respectful view on them.

                The artist sculpture argument is argument from personal incredulity. It seems impossible to our minds that all of this could be here without a creator to guide it, but sometimes things that seem impossible are correct. It seeming impossible tells us nothing.

                The notion that we're saying humans are the pinnacle of all the universe is a straw man, not something anyone has argued.

                The notion that we think we are responsible in the end only to ourselves is true, at least for me.

                Thanks for sharing opposing views.
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  • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
    Only those who are insecure about their beliefs (of whatever origin they may be) attempt to force them onto others. Why? Because their membership in the "in" crowd provides them the assurance they can not gain through confidence in knowing something is purely right in and of itself.

    That being said, even a society founded on the Constitution can not accommodate ALL social mores. Some contradict in substance, others on authority. So in the end, society _does_ ultimately have to choose a "religion" or set of moral values as authoritative and binding to the exclusion of some which are found to be incompatible.

    Does that mean that the State should establish a formal "religion"? Absolutely not. Only that the State's modus operandi should be to accommodate where possible but recognize that there will be incontrovertible issues upon which a decision will be made to the exclusion of one side or the other. All such should be left for a vote and the matter closed at that point (ie, it is not subject to Court purview).
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    • Posted by  $  jlc 3 years, 9 months ago
      blarman -

      I would posit a correction to your statements, if I may be so bold: The Constitution does not need to "...choose a 'religion' or set of moral values..."; it needs to _exclude_ unacceptable values.

      Exclusion instead of Inclusion.

      Jan (not trying to put words in your mouth - but I agree with most of what you said, and with this change I would agree with all of it)
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      • Posted by  $  blarman 3 years, 9 months ago
        Excellent suggestion. So amended.

        All in favor?

        Vote passes unanimously. No abstentions.
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        • Posted by  $  jlc 3 years, 9 months ago
          Thank you, blarman. It did feel a little odd to say, "No really: this is what you must have meant!" You obviously understand that by excluding only the untenable, you have the universe of all other behaviors in the class of 'permissible'.

          You are nice not to throw things at me.

          Jan, ducking - just in case
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    • Posted by jdg 3 years, 9 months ago
      Moral decisions (if not in the constitution itself) must be *especially* subject to Court purview because that is the only way to avoid having them become a vehicle for unConstitutional legislation.
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