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The USA Politics Thread

#14081 User is offline   HoosierDaddy 

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Posted 04 March 2024 - 09:55 PM

View PostMezla PigDog, on 04 March 2024 - 09:19 PM, said:

Two questions.

1. Out of a choice between a guy who is clearly too old for the job but is generally a decent fellow versus an absolute maniac arsehole who is also too old for the job, how are the polls looking good for the arsehole?!?

2. Does Joe Biden still have eyes? Because whenever I see him on TV you cannot see them.


I typed up a lot of words... and it all boils down to this:

People are fucking stupid.


That's all I got for you.
Trouble arrives when the opponents to such a system institute its extreme opposite, where individualism becomes godlike and sacrosanct, and no greater service to any other ideal (including community) is possible. In such a system rapacious greed thrives behind the guise of freedom, and the worst aspects of human nature come to the fore....
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#14082 User is offline   Tsundoku 

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Posted 05 March 2024 - 08:29 AM

The greatest trick the Republican Party ever pulled was to get 80 million people to vote against their own best interests, and fight to remain ignorant.
"Fortune favors the bold, though statistics favor the cautious." - Indomitable Courteous (Icy) Fist, The Palace Job - Patrick Weekes

"Well well well ... if it ain't The Invisible C**t." - Billy Butcher, The Boys

"I have strong views about not tempting providence and, as a wise man once said, the difference between luck and a wheelbarrow is, luck doesnít work if you push it." - Colonel Orhan, Sixteen Ways to Defend a Walled City - KJ Parker
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#14083 User is offline   Maark Abbott 

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Posted 05 March 2024 - 12:18 PM

View PostTsundoku, on 05 March 2024 - 08:29 AM, said:

The greatest trick the Republican Party ever pulled was to get 80 million people to vote against their own best interests, and fight to remain ignorant.


Well that sounds depressingly familiar
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#14084 User is offline   HoosierDaddy 

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Posted 05 March 2024 - 01:12 PM

It's one thing to fall in line because you just really, really like being in power and maintaining the status quo does that. It's another thing to latch on to someone as cult of personality. It's a 251st dimensional thing for that person to be DONALD TRUMP.

Like of all people... Donald Trump?

I love Obama. LOVE Obama. That's the next closest proxy for Trump's cult of personality. However, if that fucker did half the shit Trump did he'd be in prison in two seconds and be universally loathed. Myself included in said loathing.
Trouble arrives when the opponents to such a system institute its extreme opposite, where individualism becomes godlike and sacrosanct, and no greater service to any other ideal (including community) is possible. In such a system rapacious greed thrives behind the guise of freedom, and the worst aspects of human nature come to the fore....
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#14085 User is offline   Azath Vitr (D'ivers 

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Posted 05 March 2024 - 01:25 PM

View PostMaark Abbott, on 05 March 2024 - 12:18 PM, said:

View PostTsundoku, on 05 March 2024 - 08:29 AM, said:

The greatest trick the Republican Party ever pulled was to get 80 million people to vote against their own best interests, and fight to remain ignorant.


Well that sounds depressingly familiar


f = American culture
Y = Boris Johnson

f(Y) = Donald Trump

QED

This post has been edited by Azath Vitr (D'ivers: 05 March 2024 - 01:26 PM

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#14086 User is offline   amphibian 

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Posted 05 March 2024 - 08:57 PM

View PostHoosierDaddy, on 04 March 2024 - 08:29 PM, said:

Every day we stray further from the light....

I don't know if we've gone beyond the precipice. But I know that if we have not, we trod so perilously close that it becomes almost inevitable that we will go over it. And there is no going back once that happens. For good or for ill, the country will irrevocably change in such a way.

We are too partisan. We are too tribal.

We are effectively Two Americas. And I'm not sure how much I want to belong to and participate in Trump's America.

This slow march to American style fascism is numbing. The cuts were small and now they become gaping wounds.

It's hard to hold onto any semblance of hope when the Supreme Court basically just says the shits to broke for us to fix, "Fuck it, you people deal with it."

It's not really partisan when a big chunk of the country wants to rewind social rules and positions to the before the Civil War days. It's extremism by the "conservatives" and putting a lot of money in the pockets of mega rich people too.

The problem with bipartisanship or being friends with people isn't that people have factions, it's that the specific faction responsible for horrendous shit has increasingly spun itself into groups of people who can't be worked with within governmental norms or social norms.

And the leaders of the other main faction are having a hard time building up a generation of leaders between 30s and 50s - partly because the generations before neglected the broader pipeline development work and the judicial development work.
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#14087 User is offline   Tapper 

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Posted 06 March 2024 - 10:52 AM

View PostHoosierDaddy, on 05 March 2024 - 01:12 PM, said:

It's one thing to fall in line because you just really, really like being in power and maintaining the status quo does that. It's another thing to latch on to someone as cult of personality. It's a 251st dimensional thing for that person to be DONALD TRUMP.

Like of all people... Donald Trump?

I love Obama. LOVE Obama. That's the next closest proxy for Trump's cult of personality. However, if that fucker did half the shit Trump did he'd be in prison in two seconds and be universally loathed. Myself included in said loathing.

But the thing about western culture is that it worships and elevates individuals. Capitalism (whether viewed as the escape of poverty through hard work as the American Dream purports or seen through the lens of meritocracy in which money is the measuring stick by which we compare personal skill: Elon Musk is the richest man on Earth, therefore he is worth listening to) is one pillar, media another. We love mavericks and vigilantes in our entertainment and theyíre part of culture for over seventy years. When the police and bureaucrats are consistently portrayed as incompetent, itís no wonder thereís a place for the NRA in peopleís mind.

Arguing the system is broken and working against the common man has been a part of election promises everywhere since the 60s. Combine it with a politician who claims he is going to tear the system down and/or circumvent it, rather than work through it, and you arrive at Trump. The vagueness of his language and promises enhance the appeal, as everyone can read into it what they want: he promises a restoration of former glory and wealth but from what period he leaves to the imagination. So yes, for people who are dissatisfied but donít know with what, how or why or who just imagine theyíre worse off than their neighbours, he appeals.

The political system in the UK and the US with its focus on electing individual representatives per district rather than voting for a party doesnít help (and therefore the reliance on individuals to find funding through sponsorship and promises to lobbyists), but itís the lesser evil. In Europe, we see a rise of the far right as well, after all.
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#14088 User is offline   Tsundoku 

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Posted 06 March 2024 - 01:36 PM

I'd argue Western culture doesn't have a monopoly on that "elevation of the individual" thing, but it certainly has become part of the stereotype.

USA culture is one end of the current spectrum of individual vs society. China and Japan being the other end, even if expressed slghtly differently.
For me, somewhere like Singapore circa 2000-2010 sits in that middle-adjacent sweet spot.

This post has been edited by Tsundoku: 06 March 2024 - 01:36 PM

"Fortune favors the bold, though statistics favor the cautious." - Indomitable Courteous (Icy) Fist, The Palace Job - Patrick Weekes

"Well well well ... if it ain't The Invisible C**t." - Billy Butcher, The Boys

"I have strong views about not tempting providence and, as a wise man once said, the difference between luck and a wheelbarrow is, luck doesnít work if you push it." - Colonel Orhan, Sixteen Ways to Defend a Walled City - KJ Parker
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#14089 User is offline   HoosierDaddy 

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Posted 06 March 2024 - 02:00 PM

View PostTapper, on 06 March 2024 - 10:52 AM, said:

View PostHoosierDaddy, on 05 March 2024 - 01:12 PM, said:

It's one thing to fall in line because you just really, really like being in power and maintaining the status quo does that. It's another thing to latch on to someone as cult of personality. It's a 251st dimensional thing for that person to be DONALD TRUMP.

Like of all people... Donald Trump?

I love Obama. LOVE Obama. That's the next closest proxy for Trump's cult of personality. However, if that fucker did half the shit Trump did he'd be in prison in two seconds and be universally loathed. Myself included in said loathing.

But the thing about western culture is that it worships and elevates individuals. Capitalism (whether viewed as the escape of poverty through hard work as the American Dream purports or seen through the lens of meritocracy in which money is the measuring stick by which we compare personal skill: Elon Musk is the richest man on Earth, therefore he is worth listening to) is one pillar, media another. We love mavericks and vigilantes in our entertainment and they're part of culture for over seventy years. When the police and bureaucrats are consistently portrayed as incompetent, it's no wonder there's a place for the NRA in people's mind.

Arguing the system is broken and working against the common man has been a part of election promises everywhere since the 60s. Combine it with a politician who claims he is going to tear the system down and/or circumvent it, rather than work through it, and you arrive at Trump. The vagueness of his language and promises enhance the appeal, as everyone can read into it what they want: he promises a restoration of former glory and wealth but from what period he leaves to the imagination. So yes, for people who are dissatisfied but don't know with what, how or why or who just imagine they're worse off than their neighbours, he appeals.

The political system in the UK and the US with its focus on electing individual representatives per district rather than voting for a party doesn't help (and therefore the reliance on individuals to find funding through sponsorship and promises to lobbyists), but it's the lesser evil. In Europe, we see a rise of the far right as well, after all.


I understand how this figure came about and the conditions and environment that created the opportunity for a person to fill this role. Populism and how it rises have some good historic evidence and examples to look to and have been referred to often as clear parallels. The government is bad and we need to tear it down has always been rampant on the conservative and libertarian right.

It's the fact that Trump is just so awful of a human being to cling on to as your savior. A trashbag turned into sentient meaty form. Why do they lose their collective shit over this person? What is there of worth in him as a heroic persona/savior like to many of them, to ever produce the desire to cling onto him?


Trouble arrives when the opponents to such a system institute its extreme opposite, where individualism becomes godlike and sacrosanct, and no greater service to any other ideal (including community) is possible. In such a system rapacious greed thrives behind the guise of freedom, and the worst aspects of human nature come to the fore....
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#14090 User is offline   Abyss 

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Posted 06 March 2024 - 03:28 PM

View PostHoosierDaddy, on 06 March 2024 - 02:00 PM, said:

View PostTapper, on 06 March 2024 - 10:52 AM, said:

View PostHoosierDaddy, on 05 March 2024 - 01:12 PM, said:

It's one thing to fall in line because you just really, really like being in power and maintaining the status quo does that. It's another thing to latch on to someone as cult of personality. It's a 251st dimensional thing for that person to be DONALD TRUMP.

Like of all people... Donald Trump?

I love Obama. LOVE Obama. That's the next closest proxy for Trump's cult of personality. However, if that fucker did half the shit Trump did he'd be in prison in two seconds and be universally loathed. Myself included in said loathing.

But the thing about western culture is that it worships and elevates individuals. Capitalism (whether viewed as the escape of poverty through hard work as the American Dream purports or seen through the lens of meritocracy in which money is the measuring stick by which we compare personal skill: Elon Musk is the richest man on Earth, therefore he is worth listening to) is one pillar, media another. We love mavericks and vigilantes in our entertainment and they're part of culture for over seventy years. When the police and bureaucrats are consistently portrayed as incompetent, it's no wonder there's a place for the NRA in people's mind.

Arguing the system is broken and working against the common man has been a part of election promises everywhere since the 60s. Combine it with a politician who claims he is going to tear the system down and/or circumvent it, rather than work through it, and you arrive at Trump. The vagueness of his language and promises enhance the appeal, as everyone can read into it what they want: he promises a restoration of former glory and wealth but from what period he leaves to the imagination. So yes, for people who are dissatisfied but don't know with what, how or why or who just imagine they're worse off than their neighbours, he appeals.

The political system in the UK and the US with its focus on electing individual representatives per district rather than voting for a party doesn't help (and therefore the reliance on individuals to find funding through sponsorship and promises to lobbyists), but it's the lesser evil. In Europe, we see a rise of the far right as well, after all.


I understand how this figure came about and the conditions and environment that created the opportunity for a person to fill this role. Populism and how it rises have some good historic evidence and examples to look to and have been referred to often as clear parallels. The government is bad and we need to tear it down has always been rampant on the conservative and libertarian right.

It's the fact that Trump is just so awful of a human being to cling on to as your savior. A trashbag turned into sentient meaty form. Why do they lose their collective shit over this person? What is there of worth in him as a heroic persona/savior like to many of them, to ever produce the desire to cling onto him?



Because most are friends with/related to/know a Trump, or want to be a Trump, and if Trump is bad then they are bad and they won't accept that, so everything they like about him is filtered and everything they dislike is Liberal lies.

For another chunk, they'll vote for ANYTHING that isn't Democrat. Literally anything. Charles Manson's decomposing not even reanimated corpse could run and they would vote for him ahead of the most right leaning dem. It's a gut-level thing they couldn't explain if their lives and/or unemployment cheques depended on it.

For the remainder, he's a way to make money/power that they don't care what he does to anyone else.
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#14091 User is offline   Tapper 

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Posted 06 March 2024 - 03:28 PM

View PostHoosierDaddy, on 06 March 2024 - 02:00 PM, said:

View PostTapper, on 06 March 2024 - 10:52 AM, said:

View PostHoosierDaddy, on 05 March 2024 - 01:12 PM, said:

It's one thing to fall in line because you just really, really like being in power and maintaining the status quo does that. It's another thing to latch on to someone as cult of personality. It's a 251st dimensional thing for that person to be DONALD TRUMP.

Like of all people... Donald Trump?

I love Obama. LOVE Obama. That's the next closest proxy for Trump's cult of personality. However, if that fucker did half the shit Trump did he'd be in prison in two seconds and be universally loathed. Myself included in said loathing.

But the thing about western culture is that it worships and elevates individuals. Capitalism (whether viewed as the escape of poverty through hard work as the American Dream purports or seen through the lens of meritocracy in which money is the measuring stick by which we compare personal skill: Elon Musk is the richest man on Earth, therefore he is worth listening to) is one pillar, media another. We love mavericks and vigilantes in our entertainment and they're part of culture for over seventy years. When the police and bureaucrats are consistently portrayed as incompetent, it's no wonder there's a place for the NRA in people's mind.

Arguing the system is broken and working against the common man has been a part of election promises everywhere since the 60s. Combine it with a politician who claims he is going to tear the system down and/or circumvent it, rather than work through it, and you arrive at Trump. The vagueness of his language and promises enhance the appeal, as everyone can read into it what they want: he promises a restoration of former glory and wealth but from what period he leaves to the imagination. So yes, for people who are dissatisfied but don't know with what, how or why or who just imagine they're worse off than their neighbours, he appeals.

The political system in the UK and the US with its focus on electing individual representatives per district rather than voting for a party doesn't help (and therefore the reliance on individuals to find funding through sponsorship and promises to lobbyists), but it's the lesser evil. In Europe, we see a rise of the far right as well, after all.


I understand how this figure came about and the conditions and environment that created the opportunity for a person to fill this role. Populism and how it rises have some good historic evidence and examples to look to and have been referred to often as clear parallels. The government is bad and we need to tear it down has always been rampant on the conservative and libertarian right.

It's the fact that Trump is just so awful of a human being to cling on to as your savior. A trashbag turned into sentient meaty form. Why do they lose their collective shit over this person? What is there of worth in him as a heroic persona/savior like to many of them, to ever produce the desire to cling onto him?

I donít know. As you say, he is a terrible person with despicable views and very few morals.

Maybe thatís why; he is the (young male) fantasy of what being successful entails: a medieval robber baron, basically, taking whatever he wants, giving in to the base hedonistic instincts. Letís say that it takes a decade or two of adulthood to learn that lust, gluttony, envy and greed are cravings rather than bringing happiness or fulfilment, and even then, many fall into their trap during a personal crisis or as the result of a toxic environment?

My 25 year old self certainly skirted that edge.

From the conservative/industry lobbying groups and career politicians I get the cynical trade off; they donít care about the man, just about the results. If your product is (indirectly) responsible for the deaths and discomfort of thousands without causing a loss of sleep at night, why refrain from dealing with someone because of their despicable personality?

I am however deeply puzzled by the rock solid support he gets from people who pride themselves on their morality (such as evangelicals). He is proudly living a life antithetical to their beliefs yet they somehow see him not just as a means to and end, but as the second coming of Christ.
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#14092 User is offline   Maark Abbott 

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 08:47 AM

Most evangelicals seem to be terrible people more interested in supressing those they dislike or disapprove of rather than living by the teachings they espouse. It's probably why.
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#14093 User is offline   Tsundoku 

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 12:06 PM

View PostMaark Abbott, on 07 March 2024 - 08:47 AM, said:

Most evangelicals seem to be terrible people more interested in supressing those they dislike or disapprove of rather than living by the teachings they espouse. It's probably why.


Sorry. :(

Attached File(s)


This post has been edited by Tsundoku: 07 March 2024 - 12:06 PM

"Fortune favors the bold, though statistics favor the cautious." - Indomitable Courteous (Icy) Fist, The Palace Job - Patrick Weekes

"Well well well ... if it ain't The Invisible C**t." - Billy Butcher, The Boys

"I have strong views about not tempting providence and, as a wise man once said, the difference between luck and a wheelbarrow is, luck doesnít work if you push it." - Colonel Orhan, Sixteen Ways to Defend a Walled City - KJ Parker
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#14094 User is offline   Azath Vitr (D'ivers 

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 01:43 PM

View PostMaark Abbott, on 07 March 2024 - 08:47 AM, said:

Most evangelicals seem to be terrible people more interested in supressing those they dislike or disapprove of rather than living by the teachings they espouse. It's probably why.


He won over a bunch of evangelical leaders.

Many US evangelicals believe in the "prosperity gospel"---rich = virtuous. Antithetical to the New Testament, of course, but being good Protestants they believe what their preachers tell them the Good Lord says. Besides, they have a personal relationship with Go*, who speaks to them and sends veridical visions, so who needs to read?

And anyone, no matter how sinful, can be 'saved'. Trump is just "a baby Christian"! (Evangelical leaders actually say that.)

(Italics can be a bit harder to read, so I'm going to use bolded text inside quotation brackets. I've also switched to US-style quotation marks (could also increase their font size if they're still hard to see---of course French-style << >> would be even more visible, but they might confuse people; and while I like their origin in medieval drawings of mouths, I don't find their modern form aesthetically appealing, and I doubt they'll catch on in the Anglophone world even if national populations continue to age (IDK about whether they'll become more popular in Europe...).)

Quote

evangelical leaders have spent decades using the tools of pop culture ó films, music, television, and the internet ó to grow the movement. [...] Instead of modeling their lives on Christ, evangelicals have made heroes of people like John Wayne and Mel Gibson, people who project a more militant and more nationalist image. In that sense, Trump's strongman shtick is a near-perfect expression of their values.

[...] If you understand what family values evangelicalism has always entailed ó and at the very heart of it is
Spoiler



Quote

evangelicals have rallied to Trump [...] because they are not only partisans but culture warriors [...] "The barbarians are at the gates, and we need a barbarian to keep them at bay."

Why Evangelicals Went All In on Trump, Again | TIME

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#14095 User is offline   Gorefest 

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 03:31 PM

View PostAzath Vitr (D, on 07 March 2024 - 01:43 PM, said:

Antithetical to the New Testament, of course, but being good Protestants they believe what their preachers tell them the Good Lord says.


That is not how Protestantism works. That's how Catholicism (and Anglicanism) works. With Protestantism it is the word of the Good Book over the word of the local church leader, that's how the whole schism started in the first place. No Pope to interpret stuff.

My take on it is that a lot of these batshit crazy (almost exclusively American) evangelicals believe in the concept of the 'Rapture', which is an event they believe will - and actually want to - happen in their lifetime, with Trump seen as a perfect vehicle to properly kick off the End Times. Whether he is the second coming or the antichrist, they probably couldn't care less.

This post has been edited by Gorefest: 07 March 2024 - 03:41 PM

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#14096 User is offline   HoosierDaddy 

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 03:53 PM

Trump's winning over of evangelicals is fantastically hilarious. I'm an evangelical christian. It's new, but it is what I am.

Christ's call is to believe and have faith, and in doing so you are saved and will begin to mirror his actions and way to live your life.

There is nothing that Donald Trump supports that coincides with a path of sanctification and picking up your cross daily.

If you want to make "right to life" your one and only cause and issue on which to vote and base it on the Bible, fine. Do that. We can quibble, but whatever, you are a single issue voter and there's no speaking reason to you on that.

But any attempt to vote for Trump because of that and characterize that as the christian thing to do is such a distortion of Christ's call as to be bankrupt of any actual reasoning and solely a cover story to vote that way for one and only one reason. Embryos (of Americans who already live here and are probably white) are preferred over living people.

This post has been edited by HoosierDaddy: 08 March 2024 - 12:10 PM

Trouble arrives when the opponents to such a system institute its extreme opposite, where individualism becomes godlike and sacrosanct, and no greater service to any other ideal (including community) is possible. In such a system rapacious greed thrives behind the guise of freedom, and the worst aspects of human nature come to the fore....
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#14097 User is offline   Azath Vitr (D'ivers 

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Posted 07 March 2024 - 03:53 PM

View PostGorefest, on 07 March 2024 - 03:31 PM, said:

View PostAzath Vitr (D, on 07 March 2024 - 01:43 PM, said:

Antithetical to the New Testament, of course, but being good Protestants they believe what their preachers tell them the Good Lord says.


That is not how Protestantism works. That's how Catholicism (and Anglicanism) works. With Protestantism it is the word of the Good Book over the word of the local church leader, that's how the whole schism started in the first place. No Pope to interpret stuff.



Exactly. (Intended as sarcasm....)
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#14098 User is offline   Maark Abbott 

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Posted 08 March 2024 - 08:56 AM

View PostHoosierDaddy, on 07 March 2024 - 03:53 PM, said:

Christ's call is to believe and have faith, and in doing so you are saved and will begin to mirror his actions and way to live your life.


See I might think religion is wacked as heck but I respect this outlook because at the least it is actually following the teachings the religion sets out.
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#14099 User is offline   Gorefest 

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Posted 08 March 2024 - 09:21 AM

Nothing wrong with having role models and trying to live a good and kind life. I'm just not sure where an omnipotent and omniscient higher being would enter into the equation. I care for others because it is the kind and decent thing to do, not out of fear of being struck by lightning or the threat of eternal hellfire.

But I guess that is straying from the subject matter. No offense meant to any people of faith here.

This post has been edited by Gorefest: 08 March 2024 - 09:22 AM

Yesterday, upon the stair, I saw a man who wasn't there. He wasn't there again today. Oh, how I wish he'd go away.
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#14100 User is offline   Azath Vitr (D'ivers 

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Posted 08 March 2024 - 01:10 PM

Quote

Trump Is Connecting With a Different Type of Evangelical Voter

[...] religion scholars, drawing on a growing body of data, suggest another explanation:
Spoiler



Donald Trump Is Connecting With a Different Type of Evangelical Voter - The New York Times (nytimes.com)


Evangelizing... for the cult of Trump,
And all the "evangelical" ideals He stands for
(Bible and all other books be damned,
Who has the time to read when you're Truthing and making history quake?...

This post has been edited by Azath Vitr (D'ivers: 08 March 2024 - 01:11 PM

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