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Archive for Sunday, August 28, 2005

Group seeks to stem tide of ‘extreme’ conservatism

August 28, 2005

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— The political winds of moderation are starting to pick up force through conservative Kansas.

At least that's what a new bipartisan group of Kansans are hoping for as they organize themselves to launch an effort to unseat conservative State Board of Education members in the 2006 election.

"We think there is a portion of the State Board of Education whose philosophy is not in tune with mainstream Kansans," said Don Hineman, a rancher and farmer from Dighton.

Hineman is a lifelong Republican, longtime former commissioner in Lane County and a past president of the Kansas Livestock Assn.

He said he and other like-minded Republicans and Democrats were frustrated with the State Board of Education and planned to endorse moderate candidates, regardless of party affiliation.

The group, which as of yet is unnamed, will publicize its candidates' campaigns and get people involved in the races, he said.

Conservatives rule

Conservative Republicans hold a 6-4 majority on the board over moderate Republicans and Democrats.

With that majority, they have been able to approve science standards that criticize evolution after holding hearings that gained international attention as a showcase for intelligent design, the notion that some science can't be explained paving the way for a belief in a creator.

And one conservative member, Connie Morris, of St. Francis, has been a lightning rod for controversy by insulting fellow board members, making false accusations about a former mayor in her district and billing the state for a stay at an expensive hotel in Miami, which she later reimbursed the state.

Next year, five board members' seats are up for election, and four of those are held by conservatives: Morris, John Bacon, of Olathe; Kenneth Willard, of Hutchinson; and Iris Van Meter, of Thayer.

Former Garden City Mayor Tim Cruz, a Democrat, has already announced he intends to run for Morris' position.

Hineman said Cruz's political affiliation didn't bother him.

"I visited with him. We are encouraged by his candidacy and glad that he is running," he said.

He said if a moderate Republican defeated Morris in the GOP primary, the group would probably endorse both candidates.

"It would be a pleasant decision to make," he said.

Conservative defense

The Kansas Republican Assembly, the conservative wing of the party that supported the conservative board candidates, did not return phone calls or an e-mail seeking response.

But Jim Mullins, of Lawrence, who has been a past leader of the assembly, said conservatives will have no problems in Education Board races because most Kansans share their views.

"In Lawrence, I'm a right-wing kook. But in the rest of Kansas, I'm mainstream," he said.

He predicted candidates such as Morris will prevail whether they face a moderate Republican in the primary or a Democrat in the general election or both.

"It'll be nice to see her get re-elected," he said.

Above the noise

Hineman said one thing he hoped the group of about 12 Kansans, which has started to meet weekly by telephone, will be able to accomplish is to get voters interested in the education board races.

The direction of the board, he said, is crucial to helping the Kansas school system and economy.

But it may be difficult to get voters focused on education board campaigns because all statewide posts, including the governor and attorney general, will be on the ballot next year, according to Washburn University political science professor Bob Beatty.

"What they'll need is money to break through the noise," Beatty said. "As you go down the ballot, the less people pay attention."

Hineman said he hoped to launch the group publicly soon.

"It's important to get our organization in place and get public just as soon as possible. I know the conservatives are organizing and motivating and fundraising," he said.

Comments

Arminius 8 years, 7 months ago

majic12:

There's intelligent life in Kansas. Your New York may be a different case. How else would one explain the elections of Hillary, Nadler, Schumer, Maloney, and other cockroaches?

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majic12 8 years, 7 months ago

Interesting question. Even more interesting that all these talkative characters haven't answered it yet. Is there intelligent life in Kansas?

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Walking_Dude 8 years, 7 months ago

Hey Kevin, you wanna audition for BUMFIGHT? I could make you a STAR.

Abortion is justifiable homicide, but I've always wondered about this "deadbeat dad" stuff. How come a guy can't opt out of a pregnancy?

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Dani Davey 8 years, 7 months ago

bearded_gnome (love the name by the way) said "and, using a dictionary definition to define liberal when you and everybody else knows that that meaning, though rather long-standing, does not describe political liberals who believe in: bigger government with higher taxes; the "right to kill the defenseless; and the beauty of government regulations which may in fact harm free enterprise."

killing the defenseless? I'm going to assume you mean abortion here. Fair enough I guess but what about small children with life threatening illnesses that have no health insurance? On that note, what about the 45 million Americans with no health insurance? Republicans have consistently rejected any kind of national healthcare system, even just for children. And what about all the wrongly convicted that are sitting on death row? I think it's a fair opinion if you're against abortion but I've always thought there should be more consistency. If you're pro-life, you should be pro-life all the time, not just pre-natally.

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Arminius 8 years, 7 months ago

Walking_Dude:

The problem with plagiarism is that if your source had his facts wrong, your facts are wrong as well.

http://www.vicegrip.net/blog/archive/2005/06/19/906.aspx

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Walking_Dude 8 years, 7 months ago

Wow, the Kaw Valley Small Business Monthly! What a truly reputable source. Great journalism there guy. Did you even take the time to see who the editor of this garbage is? It's a right winger named Kevin Groenhagen, who got his ass handed to him in a 1996 Kansas house campaign by a Democrat 7200-50. No wonder he's bitter.

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Chocoholic 8 years, 7 months ago

Faith can be both tested and observed, but not by the scientific method. The movie Contact based on Carl Sagan's book (which I hope to read one of these days) demonstrates the experience of faith juxtaposed up against the experience of science. There are experiences in my life and in the lives of those around me that I simply can't explain by scientific means, experiences that can't be duplicated or tested, just observed, once, and usually when no one else is looking. SO darn frustrating, that. But to this day I can't explain to you how, for instance, when my brother's unit was under attack in Viet Nam and he had his pack blown off his back, my mother sat straight upright in her bed in the middle of the night and said, "Something's happened to (my brother's name). Coincidence? I'd think so, if that was the only time my mom had such an experience. But it wasn't. And while those particular experiences don't prove or disprove God's existence, for me it points to existence of possibility that can't be ruled in or out by scientific means.

Although as for observation, even science shows that some things exist despite the fact that they can't be seen. Quarks. Electromagnetic energy. Maybe someday there will be an experiment that allows us to see God, but just as it would be hard to see the Earth if you held it up against your eyeball, I think we're going to need a better vantage point. But then again, maybe she's tiny. :)

I'm not too uptight about God being called the FSM. In fact, I worshipped at the REFORMED Church of the FSM just the other day. Do you suppose there's a First REGULAR Church of the FSM? "A rose, by any other name, is still a rose." And to me, God, by any other name, is still God, undiminishable.

Sorry, but I'm going to have to tackle the problem of evil in the early hours of tomorrow. See you then.

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Chocoholic 8 years, 7 months ago

Since you speak of myths and evidence, I have a question I'm hoping you can answer, and not because I want to lead you into proving any of my points, but because I sincerely want to know. Can evolutionary change be predicted with any degree of accuracy? Using your evidence for macroevolution (note I don't dispute the evidence for microevolution, which I find to be sufficiently observable, but I admit that so far I find the evidence for macroevolution lacking in observable data; this I do have in common with at least the big names of ID research, but I don't claim any comraderie with the censorship agenda folks jumping on the ID bandwagon-maybe I'm just fantasizing about a purist approach for the development and use of ID theory that NOBODY shares!) that comes from the testing and observation of scientific method, can a future event of macroevolution be predicted with any accuracy?

You know, when I read the first headline I saw about the FSM, before I read anything in the article, I actually thought maybe the name had been coined by a group of conservative extremists who were parodying some occurrence of evolution that had resulted in a new species! So I was surprised to find it came from the other end of the spectrum when I got into the article itself. When I got "exposed" to evolution, some of my education on the topic came from evolutionary biology scholarly journals. I was shocked to find evidence that the folks beating the (macro)evolution drums were just as adamant as any Christian evangelist I'd ever heard preach, complete with altar call. There were even evolutionary missionaries. And so I formed the opinion that extremists on both sides of the issue really come from two sides of the same coin, with neither side willing to concede that perhaps they each hold pieces of the truth, nor to truly test and observe and consider.

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Chocoholic 8 years, 7 months ago

Wendt,

First, to your comments on my earlier (first) post. You asked what I meant about micro- and macroevolution. It looks as though you visited the geocities page I quoted from, so you may have seen how those folks define those particular terms. But I'll go ahead and put my two cents in.

Microevolution = the small steps of evolutionary change that lead to variation within a species, ie the famous example of the moth population that changed color in response to their environment, the development of bacteria's resistance to antibiotics, the adaptation of people's skin color or added or reduced hairiness, etc. in response to habitat temperature and amount of sunlight, jaw size and power in response to diet, etc. etc.

Macroevolution = the large evolutionary jumps required to bring about change that produces entirely new species, ie what occured to produce the Cambrian explosion. Theories about how these large jumps happened, as I'm sure you know, include that they were the culmination of many small steps of change through natural selection over a very long period of time; Stephen Jay Gould's theory of punctuated equilibrium; Goldschmidt's hopeful monster theory; and ID. Perhaps there are others, but those are the theories with which I've crossed paths to date.

I don't feel I can speak for those people who claim to subscribe to ID theory, yet, as you say, "are attempting to censor evolution out of schools." I can see where ID theory could be readily hijacked by those with such an agenda. And I must say I was disappointed to get that feeling from the very Web site I quoted from, and from another I visited. You're right I think; those people create a contradiction. As you could see from my posting in response to comments from Flange, I personally am not for censorship of the subject.

This censorship issue is near and dear to my heart. I grew up in a tiny western KS community (80 people counting dogs & cats) and attended a consolidated school that served three towns + rural folk. The most I was ever taught about evolution was that it said people came from monkey heritage (they didn't even have THAT species right!) Basically the biology teacher danced around/avoided the topic and spent most of his time whacking the dolts on the front row on the head with his enormous class ring.

Fortunately, I guess he didn't consider me a dolt. I avoided brain damage and went on to college at one of the private KS universities that I won't name, altho it's in league with Bethany, Baker, Friends U., KS Newman, etc. As a lowly English major, not many science courses were required, so I again learned nothing about evolutionary theory. Or any of the other theories, for that matter. Finally, as an adult, I gained "exposure" to the material and began a process of self-education. And I am angry that I was never given this information. This is why I oppose the censorship of any of the theories in the school system.

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Walking_Dude 8 years, 7 months ago

"Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice."

---Barry Goldwater, 1964

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observer 8 years, 7 months ago

pointed out your brilliance and superior analytical skills.

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Arminius 8 years, 7 months ago

observer:

Nothing else to contribute but snide remarks? You bore me.

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observer 8 years, 7 months ago

Amazing, Kevin to validate your point, you link to "yourself". Brilliant, you'll make white house spin doctor yet.

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Arminius 8 years, 7 months ago

A conservative, by definition, cannot be an extremist. Conservatism and extremism are utter opposites.

http://smallbizmonthly.com/columns/politicsjul05.html

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bearded_gnome 8 years, 7 months ago

basing your argument on a typographical error, silly Wendt.
and, using a dictionary definition to define liberal when you and everybody else knows that that meaning, though rather long-standing, does not describe political liberals who believe in: bigger government with higher taxes; the "right to kill the defenseless; and the beauty of government regulations which may in fact harm free enterprise.

now, you imply that I did not recognize your figure of speech, and you use that too. of course I recognized your simile, for that is what it is and not an analogy. it was so inflamitory that I chose to treat it as literal in replying.
any time you want to learn about similes, analogies, allegories, anthropomorphisms, hyperbole, irony, etc. I obviously could teach you a lot.

may the Kansas Republican Assembly grow and gain success!

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Dani Davey 8 years, 7 months ago

This board has become the perfect example of what is wrong with politics today. Look at the polarization. Sure as a Democrat my first instinct is to say "look at how polarized Bush's presidency has made us." But the truth of the matter is that it's not just Bush and the Republicans (though I'd say Rove plays a bigger part than anyone), it's the Democrats too. Wendt was right when he said that liberal is supposed to mean open minded and accepting. However he and many of his like minded Democrats have shown that politically liberal and textbook liberal, aren't the same word. Liberals are as fast to reject the ideas of conservatives as conservatives are to reject liberal ideas. There is no thoughtful consideration on either side. And that is where the problems lie. Of course I tend to agree more with Democratic policies. But when I talk to a Republican I listen to their ideas and try to think of ways that we could incorporate both sides into a final product. That isn't always possible but it's worth thinking about. Politics isn't about governing anymore. It's a popularity contest with name-calling included. My highschool elections were more properly run than most state and national elections today. Back to what this article is about - moderates. Thank God (or Flying Spaghetti Monster if you prefer) for moderates. They are generally the ones who aren't tied to pleasing anyone in particular and can therefore give the consideration to the issues that result in the best outcomes for all. We should have more people like Barbara Ballard and Tom Sloan. I'm glad to see people like Michael Henry running in Johnson County trying to unseat super-conservatives. If I can't have a Democrat, I'll take a moderate Republican over a conservative Republican any day. Yeah, Bush and the Republicans have done a lot of Shady business. At this point, though, complaining about it doesn't do much good. Sure people should protest and make their unhappiness known, but we all know Bush doesn't care. Our time (and by our I mean Democrats and those unhappy with our current state of government) would be better spent fundraising, listening to new ideas, finding stand-up people who will make better candidates and truly incorporating what the word "liberal" means.

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Your geocities guy says that science excludes God from research a priori.

Science doesn't exclude anything of the sort. We just honestly state that we have never seen God.

If we see God, then we will ask someone else if they have seen God. If they have seen God, then we will compare experiences (sense-data). If the experiences match and can be replicated, then the God theory becomes a confirmed theory or "a fact". If not, then our God experience may be hallucination or delusion.

We don't want to teach hallucination or delusion to our children without lots of disclaimers.

The fallacy is that the Geocities guy is submitting a proof that God exists because science hasn't proven that he doesn't exist. This is a logically spurious argument. This is an argument that can be applied to prove the existence of anything, hence the Flying Spaghetti Monster parody.

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Evolution and genetics have been tested. A muslim, a buddhist, a hindu, a christian can all test the theory and if they all get the same result, then the theory is confirmed.

In science, it's called peer review. Takes six months to a year for most papers.

My problem with your ID Theory is that your ID Theory has no evidence. None. It's what we in science call "a myth".

I agree that there have been many myths that have been considered fact until something better came along. I don't deny that persons who hold these myths to be true get real attached to the myth, so attached that they are willing to kill non-believers.

If you want to teach a class in myth, great! I would suggest starting with the excellent "Power of Myth" series with Joseph Campbell and Bill Moyers.

Just don't try to elevate myth to the level of science.

I bet that you don't want your God called "Flying Spaghetti Monster" but if you are honest, you have to admit that you really don't know God's name, let alone whether he exists.

Here's a good one. Can something be something that it's not? Can God be evil? Can God tolerate evil? Does God know everything that is going on? Does God have the power to stop evil?

I am completely serious. It's called "The Problem of Evil". It's a legitimate theological problem, a problem that hasn't been solved yet.

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Chocoholic 8 years, 7 months ago

Flange said: "I believe evolution is the best scientifically-based theory available to explain how humans arrived at where we currently are. Intelligent design is a sneaky attempt to push a religious agenda, and it has no place in a SCIENCE classroom."

I think ID certainly could fall over that ledge. But consider this quote from http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Hangar/4264/ID.html paragraph 3 of introduction:

"Naturalists [(those who ascribe to evolution as occuring only by natural means, by chance)] claim science can't point to a creator or designer.... They make this a priori claim at the onset of their arguments. But this is a logical fallacy because they are artificially limiting science by saying what it may or may not do before any research is done."

And anyway, aren't all classrooms in public education supposed to be about education? Why can't all theories of origin and of the path life has taken to reach its present state be taught, AS THEORIES, along with the evidence for them, and students be trusted to have the intelligence to make their own decisions about the truth? Whatever the truth, isn't it important to know the thoughts and beliefs of a variety of groups of people in the world, that those thoughts and beliefs exist? Does that belong in a science classroom, or any other classroom, in Kansas or anywhere else?

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

There are several things that I wish you would clarify.

ID people don't deny that evolutionary change happens yet they are attempting to censor evolution out of schools. This is a contradiction. Censoring evolution will hurt students when they get to college level genetics classes.

ID people dispute the assertion that evolution accounts for all the diversity of life, yet they supply a faith based alternative which can not be tested or even observed.

Ever see God? Ever see God create? Ever read about Pasteur's experiment to see God create? Pretty elegant experiment.

Things which can't be tested or observed aren't science, by definition.

This alternative mechanism for life creation (the Intelligent Designer) was parodied as the Flying Spaghetti Monster in another article. That characterization probably didn't go over real well with the ID folks, as the Intelligent Designer goes by the name "God" when ID people are not in the vicinity of any evolutionist.

What is Macroevolution? Please provide a definition. Microorganisms are defined in science as life that can not be seen without aid. Bacteria, Fungi, Viruses are microorganisms. I don't think that you are claiming that evolution only occurs with bacteria and not with larger creatures, such as ourselves.

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Chocoholic 8 years, 7 months ago

Wendt said: "The point is you don't want to accept the truth of evolution. If evolution threatens your concept of God / Intelligent Designer / Flying Spaghetti Monster, then that is something we can explore....

For example: evolution is widely held by scientists to be a process that occurs in nature. Evolution makes no claims about the beginning of time. That's what the theoretical cosmologists (Stephen Hawking et al) do."

I would agree with you that "the concept of evolution makes no claims about the beginning of time." Beyond the start of the presence of life on Earth (be it by lightning strike to the "primordial soup," "extraterrestrial alien" transport of preexisting life to Earth in form of spores or bacteria, or other theory) it doesn't attempt answers, such as the source of the atoms reacting to produce the lightning, or the origin of the extraterrestrial aliens, or the origin of the speck of matter that exploded in the Big Bang.

However, proponents of Intelligent Design theory would hasten to correct your misassumption that they find themselves threatened in any way by the "truth of evolution," as you put it. They don't deny that evolutionary change happens. But they do dispute the assertion that "this mechanism accounts for all the diversity of life." (Dembski, William A. Intelligent Design. IVP, 1999. pp. 112-113.) Microevolution, they find evidence for. Macroevolution, they don't.

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

On the Christian attitude towards women front (wife beating revisited):

From http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-bibleatrocities.html

The Bible's treatment of women was abominable. Women not only had a submissive and inferior status to men, but they were considered chattel. (Genesis 3:16, Exodus 21:7-11, Numbers 30.) God set the monetary value of women at 50 to 66 percent of that of men. (Leviticus 27:3-7.) Women were to learn quietly and submissively from men, and were never to teach men or have authority over them. (1 Timothy 2:11,12.)

Double standards abounded. A wife found guilty of adultery was to be killed along with her lover. (Deuteronomy 22:22.) But, hypocritically, no law prevented a married man from carrying on with as many affairs as he pleased, as long as they were not with other men's wives. Likewise, prostitution was illegal for Jewish women. (Deuteronomy 23:17.) But there was no law forbidding foreign women to be prostitutes in Israel, or for Jewish men to frequent them - which was a common practice. And if a master and his female servant had sex, and the woman was engaged to another man, the master merely had to pay a fine, but the woman was to be whipped. (Leviticus 19:20-22.)

The Bible found no fault with Abraham and Isaac for knowingly giving their wives to other men for sexual use. (Genesis 12:11-16; Genesis 26:7-10.) In fact, the Bible praised Lot and Ephremite for offering their daughters to be raped, so this fate would not befall their male guests. (Genesis 19:1-8; Judges 19:22-24.) If a man raped a virgin who was not engaged to be married, his "punishment" was to pay a fine and marry her. (Exodus 22:16.) As for female servants, male masters could legally rape them. (Exodus 21:7-11; Leviticus 19:20-22; Deuteronomy 21:10-14.) The Bible even shows such holy men as Abraham and Jacob forcing sex on their female slaves (Genesis 16:1-2, Genesis 30:9-10.) Curiously, Christians defend servitude in the Bible by claiming that the rights of these servants were "well-regulated." (!)

(End of quote)

From what I am told, the Bible is the divinely inspired word of God. Infallible. The basis for the hearings on evolution conducted by the Kansas Board of Education.

Or is there an "Intelligent Designer" Bible that we haven't been told about?

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Flange:

This isn't a popularity contest. I'm not in the business of making anyone feel good. These are serious problems. I have presented the problems and I haven't heard anything back even resembling rational argument.

If you call yelling "Fire", in a burning building. hate filled rhetoric then I plead guilty. There is no way I can sugarcoat it. Hell, you people are getting upset with just a recitation of the facts.

It's like the Harvey Keitel character from Pulp Fiction (The Wolf) said: "Pretty please. With sugar on top. Clean the f**king car."

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Never said that you beat your wife, but then you read the post closely.

It's called "analogy" as in a situation that is similar to another. The word "like" should have tipped you off.

Although I shouldn't do this (as it's irrelevant to the discussion), I will say that I have published from one graduate science department at KU and been acknowledged in a paper from a surgery department at KUMC. I have also been married for twenty years.

Evolution isn't changing. Evolution is the statement that things change over time. The examples that confirm evolution are numerous but the theory of evolution is pretty rock solid. To call evolution "jello" is, quite frankly, in error.

It's funny that you state that you know how scientific "enquiry" is done (the word is spelled "inquiry") yet you side with the people who claim that evolution states something about the origin of the universe. It doesn't.

Conservative christians certainly make an implication that if evolution is correct, then the Bible isn't correct, I'll grant you that. Much in the same way that Copernicus's assertion that the Earth was not the center of the universe implied that the theology of the time was not correct. I've already referenced that "analogy" in this blog.

Scientific inquiry requires testing. Testing occurs upon events. Events have to happen multiple times to be tested within controlled circumstances and to a statistical certainty. The origin of the universe is not something we can test, unless you have a time machine you're not telling us about.

The vacant liberal "ascertion" (it's spelled "assertion") that Bush lied to us to get us into war has been the finding of the The Senate Report on Iraqi WMD Intelligence (formally, the Report of the Select Committee on Intelligence on the U.S. Intelligence Community's Prewar Intelligence Assessments on Iraq) for awhile now. Didn't you get the memo?

"Stereotypical narrow liberal view" seems to be an oxymoron. Are you stereotyping liberals as being narrow minded or are you confused on what you want to say. Or I guess that could have been some sort of ad hominem attack, projecting characteristics that are more often associated with conservatives. Liberals are usually considered broad minded. Hence the word "liberal".

Liberal -- 1) Not limited to or by established, traditional, orthodox, or authoritarian attitudes, views, or dogmas; free from bigotry. -- 2) Favoring proposals for reform, open to new ideas for progress, and tolerant of the ideas and behavior of others; broad-minded. (from dictionary.com).

Doesn't sound narrow minded to me.

You stupid to believe in the conservative wing of the Kansas Board of Education. The error is compounded by the fact that you, of the educational background that you profess to have, should know better.

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bearded_gnome 8 years, 7 months ago

okay Wendt; sorry I did not get back until now! no, I wasn't beating my wife, in fact I fed her lunch, prepared it myself and have been helping her with some KU homework.
one disappointing feature of this article is the complete lack of statements from the dreaded conservatives pointed at by Mr. Mooshy moderate.
now, Wendt, I have not beaten my wife, and I hope you will apologize and retract your stereotyped statement!

second, it may really shock you to know that I have a graduate level science education, yet I do believe the Bible to be true. I also know that evolution is only a theory, changing over time, and people like you who put your faith in it are trying to use jello for a foundation to your beliefs.
obviously, I understand how scientific enquiry is made.
you repeat the vacant liberal ascertion that Bush lied to get us into war, well then John Kerry lied too, and Clinton in '98, and the UN inspectors who did find Saddam in documented violation of dozens of failings from missiles to programs to make chem and bio weapons, to documenting the disposal of precursor substances, etc.
saying that Bush lied to get us into war does not make it so.

Wendt, your stereotypical narrow liberal view of the world sure misses a lot.

I haven't beaten my wife yet in over a dozen years of marriage. should I start to satisfy you?

you seem to think we are all stupid who believe the conservatives on the BOE board are right.
this resembles the argument I heard a lot after last November's election; "john Kerry lost because americans are too stupid, mislead, etc." that's a real winner for winning hearts and influencing those you disagree with, Wendt.

k

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Why are you so concerned with how others see you? I'm not asking you to be anything. If I was abusing you or the blog, the moderators would have pulled me. However, my posts seem to make valid arguments and refer to historical fact. Your last post is full of self-pity.

Believing or not believing in evolution isn't the big deal. Like gravity, evolution happens and belief doesn't enter into it.

Evolution does not depend upon the belief structure of the humans in a particular part of the globe. Evolution occurs whether we humans are here or absent.

We can't evolution. We can't make it go away because it makes us feel uncomfortable.

The point is you don't want to accept the truth of evolution. If evolution threatens your concept of God / Intelligent Designer / Flying Spaghetti Monster, then that is something we can explore.

When our population believes in the crap that the Board is trying to propagate, what it means is that we (as a society) are so gullible that we will believe anything.

For example: evolution is widely held by scientists to be a process that occurs in nature. Evolution makes no claims about the beginning of time. That's what the theoretical cosmologists (Stephen Hawking et al) do.

I understand why this is worrisome in the conservative Christian community because, like the discovery that the Earth was not the center of the universe, it shakes the paradigm. People are uncomfortable with things that imply that the Bible might not have all the answers.

People used to call it heresy. People used to burn others for this. Not too long ago relatively speaking.

======= The political problems that I list are historical fact. You can research them at your leisure.

If we don't correct the problems of an incredibly corrupt government, we all suffer.

I merely listed a number of the Republican lies that we (as a society) fell for. These lies are costing us lives and prestige around the world. That will have repercussions on our daily lives.

I would like to address those problems but having to deal with ad hominem attacks slows down the process.

Your narcissism and inability to come up with articulate and truthful ideas isn't my fault either.

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OldEnuf2BYurDad 8 years, 7 months ago

I'm surprised at how easy it is for some people to be so insulting towards others.

I do have only half a brain. I'd have to have only half a brain to keep coming back here and posting ideas in a forum where no matter what I say, I'm a target for abuse. I could put forward the most articulate and truthful ideas, and I'd be vilified for the crime of not being a liberal. Be a liberal, or get abused... that's the rule of Wendt.

In my last post, I admitted to having moderate leanings, but no, that was not enough. A moderate is still way too far to the right to escape Wendt's fire and brimstone. I'm expected to think for myself, assuming that thinking for myself leads me to think like Wendt. Otherwise, I'm just an idiot.

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observer 8 years, 7 months ago

That is a nice summation of a lot of peoples feelings. Not the right wing conservatives of course, but anyone else who has at least half a brain

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Old Enuff:

If I would've wanted to have people agree with me in Lawrence, I would've joined a Frat.

This is a blog, not a dating or friendship service. If you are using it as such, Dude, I feel for you.

I like how you think things are true because they are popular. The poll is the truth. If that is the case, Dick Morris must be your God.

Kerry got shot three times in Vietnam but was portrayed as unpatriotic, not because it was true but because it flew (somehow) with the electorate (you thoughtful, listening, and constructive Republicans) enough to give a guy, (who was so drugged out that he didn't want to take a piss test), the presidency.

Can you tell me who Max Cleland is? He lost three f**king limbs and yet was also portrayed as "unpatriotic" because it flew with you people. He lost to someone who should be kissing his feet.

Can you tell me who John McCain is? He had "illegitimate Asian children", clearly "unpatriotic", and was defeated by Bush. Karl Rove spread those lies. All this after spending five years in the Hilton for you and me.

Bush said that Iraq was involved with 9/11, and creating WMDs. Both are now well documented lies, but they sure are flying with you thoughtful and listening people.

Karl Rove and Scooter McLibby both admitted to outing Valerie Plame. And so far, it's flying. Do you remember the Nixon White House? I do. Haldeman and Erlichman were both long gone for crap like this.

And you want me to mellow???? Good Luck.

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OldEnuf2BYurDad 8 years, 7 months ago

Wendt:

You seem to think that I had a problem with you stating that "republicans do bad things". Geez, you really DO think everyone who doesn't think like you is stupid, don't you? I'd have to be completely without any brain matter to NOT agree that your OVERLY LONG list of "republican wrongs" was mostly true. YES, republicans make mistakes! So do democrats! Do you want to know WHY I voted for Bush for his second term? Because I believe that John Kerry should have had his citizenship STRIPPED for his treasonous activities after the Vietnam war. I couldn't vote for a man who led a group that vandalized national monuments and held meetings with our communist enemies in a show of support for them. Like the kids of South Park said: it came down to a vote between a douche-bag or a turd, and I voted for the turd.

People like you are so angry at our president. I think that's "transference". I think part of why the liberal left in America is so vocal against Bush because they are so ashamed that they couldn't even unseat a monkey like him. Are you angry about the state of affairs in this country? Blame yourself. If the dems had put forward a viable candidate, I would have considered voting for that person, but you just put forward a total douche when you could have put someone BELIEVABLE on the ticket. Lieberman was more liberal than Kerry, but I BELIEVE him when he speaks. I would have considered a vote for Lieberman.

You make it seem as if dems do no wrong. I have a question for you, was it a republican administration that decided to escalate the Vietnam war? Was it a democrat in the white house who got us out of Vietnam and may have averted a world war with China by establishing relations with them? Which war killed more people: Bush's war, or Johnson's war? [Now, reader, imagine me making two long posts about how democrats are of the devil because of the mistakes made during the Vietnam war.]

George Bush got us into an unjust war, could probably be called a war criminal and appears to be completly in bed with big money... yet the democrats couldn't even put forward a candidate who could beat a complete retard of a president! [My apologies to those with mental disabilities.] If you think I responded to you because you stepped on my "republican" toes, you misjudge me. I voted for Dukakis and for Gore.

Your ability to come up with looooong lists of bad people who happen to be republicans is NOT how you make a point and get people to agree with you. Even in a town as "left" as Lawrence, who here is really AGREEING with you? No one making posts today is really that excited about associating their views with your loooong, generalized and mostly angry posts. No one really likes angry people.

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Unwilling to listen??? To what?

Someone who thinks it's okay to lie to the American public because it's "organizing" or "motivating" or "fund-raising".

Someone who doesn't know that the basis for the evolution hearings was elementally faulty? Someone who (somehow) hasn't gotten the news that the evolution hearings put Kansas in a bad light?

That's what I was referring to in my first post. People will say something stupid and then when you respond to it with something other than Dittohead agreement, then I wasn't listening. Or thinking. Or being constructive. I heard you.

How many problems did I list and how many were answered with constructive solutions by the Republicans willing to "listen, think, and respond contructively"?

Things are way out of whack in this country. As I posted previously in one of my unthinking / unlistening / unconstructive posts, will it take a huge calamity such as a Depression to wake people up.

Did you watch McLaughlin this morning? The smart money isn't on incumbent Republicans right now.

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Aahhhhh, OldEnuf doesn't like it when someone says that Republicans do bad things.

What are you going to say to the families of the >1850 service personnel who lost their loved ones, not to wife beating, but to fight in a war that should not have been waged in the first place?

Are you going to be righteously indignant at that point? Do you have the balls to be?

I can't help you if you haven't recognized how foolish we look to the rest of the country.

Call up the NY Times (1-888-NYT-NEWS or (212) 556-1831). Call them and ask them how the evolution hearings "played in Peoria". Record the call. Post the recording on a website.

Hell, I'm running a webserver, I'll post it for you. Free of charge. Tell us the site name and let the rest of us bloggers listen in.

It's like the sun coming up in the east. I can point you in the correct direction but if you are blind (i.e. in denial), you aren't going to see it.

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OldEnuf2BYurDad 8 years, 7 months ago

Also, a note to LJWorld.com:

Just because we have a first amendment doesn't mean that it should be OK for someone to log in and post comments with a name like "ReachAround". This is a forum for ideas, not a porn site. I'd like someone to pull that log on ID and force RA to get an appropriate name. If I was giving someone a "reach around" in public, I'd get arrested. THIS is a public place, so such monikers do not have a place here.

Please. We need to keep this clean. You don't have to be a moral conservative to see how wrong that is.

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OldEnuf2BYurDad 8 years, 7 months ago

Wendt:

It ironic that this story is about extremists (as they are labled by some), yet in the midst of your ranting you don't have even enough insight to see your own extremist perspective. Do you realize that you just likened EVERY republican to a WIFE BEATER?!

You owe every non-wife-beating republican an apology. But you won't offer one, because YOU are an extremist.

There are good reasons to vote democrat (I voted for Gore), but there are good reasons to vote republican as well (second time around, I voted for Bush). For you to say what you just said makes you unqualified to call anyone else narrow-minded.

You say that the rest of the country is laughing at us. No, they aren't. A full half of all states have recently had some sort of legislation proposed to limit the teaching of evolution in public schools. Factually, we are part of the mainstream. But, if all you do is look at the mass media, you will get the impression that Kansas is the poster child of ignorance in the U.S. We aren't. But, making us look that way sells newspapers, so that's what the press has done to us.

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nomorebobsplease 8 years, 7 months ago

"In Lawrence, I'm a right-wing kook. But in the rest of Kansas, I'm mainstream"

That's probably a true statement, unfortunately.

Wendt, there are too many conservative Republicans who are PROUD (see above quote) of being narrow minded, shortsighted idiots.

I wish Hineman and his group godspeed.

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Here are some more:

Real values like respecting your chosen profession enough to maintain your law license and not let it lapse? Twice?

Real values like not respecting your children's education enough to give it a higher priority than a NASCAR Hall of Fame?

Real values like focusing on the teaching of evolution when the intellectual capital drain from the State and Meth are much bigger and tougher problems?

The rest of the country is laughing at us. If you can't figure that one out, then the problems with the Board will be beyond you.

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Real values like not knowing how scientific inquiry is conducted?

Real values like not understanding evolution and the process of change?

Real values like not having enough integrity to refuse to go to war when the rationale for that war is untrue?

Real values like revealing the name of a CIA operative in retaliation for telling the truth?

Does it take a Depression for the Republicans to admit that they are wrong? Depression is what we are looking at, people.

Think I'm kidding? Look at the balance of trade. Look at the price of oil and our lack of control over it. We're bent over, people.

Republicans are like husbands who beat their wives by night and pontificate by day. An abusive husband won't realize that he is a bad guy until he is led away in cuffs.

I would take Republicans more seriously if their primary spokespersons were not radio disk jockeys.

Excuse me. Radio commentators.

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ReachAround 8 years, 7 months ago

Pat Robertson for President !!

< sigh >

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bearded_gnome 8 years, 7 months ago

"organizing, motivating and fund raising" ... what dreadful conservatives, we are actually engaging in the ordinary american democratic process! what next? political speechmaking? standing for real values beyond just trying to get elected with platitudes? shocking.
Jim Mullens and the republican assembly, may your tribe increase!
wow, did you notice that this mooshy moderate quoted in the article is from "lane county?" Jim Lane for whom that county seems to be named would not have had much "tolerance" for mooshy moderates. thank you.
e

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wendt 8 years, 7 months ago

Good Luck and God Speed. Seriously.

The extremists don't seem to take kindly to dialogue. They know "everything".

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DarthSidious 8 years, 7 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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