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Archive for Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Spreading peace

May 10, 2006

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To the editor:

Of the more than 200,000 Peace Poles standing in 180 countries, eight now radiate peace from our very own town. The eighth pole was planted by the International Student Assn. and Phi Beta Delta on the Kansas University campus on May 1. Each of these poles carries the beautiful prayer "May peace prevail on Earth" in many languages.

We would love to see more Peace Poles established in Lawrence. If you are interested in learning more about them and, perhaps, planting one in your yard, at your place of work or worship, your school, a park or anywhere else, please visit our information table at the Lawrence Public Library. It will be in the south entrance foyer until Tuesday. There you will find fliers about the World Peace Prayer Society that coordinates the Peace Pole Program, information on children's peace projects, instructions on how to order a Peace Pole and much more. The society's Web site is www.worldpeace.org.

May peace prevail in Lawrence; may peace prevail on Earth for all beings everywhere.

Judy Carman and Beth Schultz,

Lawrence

Comments

Kelly Powell 8 years, 7 months ago

They truly "radiate" peace? How does one measure the amount of peace it is radiating? In angstrom units,btu's or candleight per square foot? I may of woke up on the cynical side of the bed today, but empty little gestures like this do nothing but give a false impression that something has been accomplished.....Oh well, people need their symbols and icons....carry on.

paladin 8 years, 7 months ago

Well, fiddle dee dee. First May Poles, now Peace Poles. Are all these Poles in the country legally, I wonder? I think its great. What a loverly sentiment. Peace for all the beings of the Earth. Pretty much takes care of any twinges of guilt I might have for any misfortunate beings and also alleviates any responsibility for doing anything about anything, other that superfluously pleasing myself. What a great idea. Peace be with you and especially with me.

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

Osama on Mass A Play by Blessed3x

Scene 1. Beth and Judy are walking down the smoke choked sidewalk on a bright, sunny morning. Suddenly they are confronted by Osama Bin Ladin carrying a "Honk for Hemp" sandwich board.

Osama: I will kill all Americans!! Die, die, die!!

Beth and Judy : But, Mr. Bin Laden, didn't you see the peace pole we planted in the park. It radiates peace. Doesn't it make you want to just love everyone?

Osama: Oh, yes! You are right. I really don't know why I've been so evil, but I want to thank you for bringing these wonderful poles to my attention.

Beth and Judy: You're welcome, Mr. Bin Laden. We're sorry our buildings got in the way of your planes, and the USS Cole got in the way of your explosives laden boat. We're especially sorry for all those evil embassy employees that got in the way while you were blowing up their embassy buildings.

Osama: It's okay my dears. Now tell me, how much radiation comes off of these poles? Is it enough for a dirty bomb?

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Blessed 3x,

Who is this Osama you are referring to? I thought our beef was with Saddam? Or that guy in Iran...Oh well, no matter. We'll just keep bombing everyone into oblivion, surely that will achieve peace. Who needs a pole when you've got enough bombs to pulverize the planet?

Really Blessed, are you that naive to believe that bombs alone will achieve the end you seek? Just look at present day Iraq. Our bombs have done so much to quell the insurgency and anti-Americanism...okay, and George Bush is a trustworthy gent with only the commoners' best interests at heart.

If you're so into dropping bombs and killing people (because guess what... much like the way our buildings got in the way of Osama's planes, Iraqi civilians get in the way of our smart bombs), why don't you catch the next flight to Baghdad! Better yet, send your children!

craigers 8 years, 7 months ago

I don't know about you guys, but I could seriously see a South Park episode about peace poles.

Blessed, nice work.

craigers 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst, chill out blessed was being synical just like other posters. Wow, somebody woke up on the wrong side of the peace pole this morning!!

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Craigers,

I'm not one to get all choked up about the peace poles, but I'm so sick of the warmongering. It's gotten us nothing but a huge deficit, more enemies, and a completely strapped military. But, people like Blessed and others make light of the situation, without a moment's reflection. I'm tired of the apathetic, willfully ignorant, short-sighted American electorate who think war on this and that is the answer to everything.

Doesn't it seem ironic to you that all these warmongers claim to support the war because it will stabilize the Middle East and make America safer, yet these people are the first to mock peace (even symbolic gestures). They're simply not open to the idea of peace unless it's delivered via American aircraft and kills at least 100 folks/pop. The idea of peace is detestable to these folks and represents weakness. Such an ignorant view.

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst,

In case you haven't noticed, Saddam is about to meet his virgins in the after life. I'll agree that bombs may not be the perfect answer, but if you think peace poles and hippy crap like that are you may be the most naive person on the planet. These are not people that respond to peace poles, or sit-ins, or puke-ins, or die-ins are kumbaya around the freakin' campfire. Until you and your buddies realize that THEY WANT TO KILL US SOLEY BECAUSE THEIR CRAZY RELIGION TELLS THEM TO we are all in danger. I guess it will take suicide bombings in the streets of KC or Omaha or Denver to wake you people up. Never before has an invading army went to greater lengths or greater expense to spare civilians than the US Army did in Iraq. If we are such evil arses, why did we even fire off "smart" bombs when we could have used WWII era dumb bombs at 1/100th the cost to turn the desert into a giant BBQ pit?

Maybe you're like that crazy a$$ mayor of San Fransisco that wants to eliminate our military and send all the money from their budget to the middle east to foster good relations. What a crazy bunch!

You know what the answer is? We have to deprogram the masses in the middle east. We have to teach them that women have rights, rape rooms and state sponsered mass executions are not okay, that failure should not be met with the slaying of one's entire family and that blowing up a school bus full of children is not an acceptable means of voicing ones opinion. Are we going about it the right way? I don't know. Maybe, maybe not. But the one thing I am quite certain of is that Osama, the PLO, Hesbola (sp?) and the other wacked out loonies in the middle east couldn't give a rat's flying arse about your pansy arsed peace poles! So go ahead and plant your poles, sing your songs, pretend your dead on the sidewalk and allow every illegal to cross our borders unchallenged that you want. Meanwhile, for right or wrong, the rest of us will make an attempt to save our backsides from future attacks.

As far as the citizens of Iraq are concerned, they now have an elected government that is representative of ALL factions. They are no longer tortured or have to see their wives and daughters sent to the rape rooms. They are building their production of oil to gain economic stability. In short, they are making progress. To deny this is to just deny the facts. Rome wasn't built in a day. The process will continue to grow and the small groups of terrorists that continue to cause trouble in Iraq will fall to the power of the united people. Iraq will succeed as long we allow them to and protect them in their infancy.

Our plan may not be the best, but anything's better than peace poles!

Oh and in regards to my play, it's called sarcasm.

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Blessed--

"THEY WANT TO KILL US SOLEY BECAUSE THEIR CRAZY RELIGION TELLS THEM TO"

Their crazy religion...are you referring to Islam or Christianity. It could go either way!

"If we are such evil arses, why did we even fire off "smart" bombs when we could have used WWII era dumb bombs at 1/100th the cost to turn the desert into a giant BBQ pit?"

The fact that you even ask this question speaks VOLUMES about what you DON'T understand. Can you say Halliburton, Boeing, and Lockheed Martin? War is big money, Blessed. I'm surprised you didn't know that.

"Maybe you're like that crazy a$$ mayor of San Fransisco that wants to eliminate our military and send all the money from their budget to the middle east to foster good relations."

Wrong. I don't want to get rid of the military. That's the problem with people like you...you see black and white, never gray. You think because people suggest alternative means to an end, they want to get rid of the military. Who taught you to draw such dramatic and erroneous conclusions?

"We have to deprogram the masses in the middle east. We have to teach them that women have rights..."

I love how conservatives want to take the high road on this women's rights thing. This from the same lot who believe American women should be home, barefoot and pregnant, dutifully servicing their husbands as dictated by God. What about the women in Saudi Arabia? Do they have rights also? You do know Saudi Arabia is one of our closest and dearest allies while they remain one of the harshest, most brutal dictatorships on the planet? Just another example of your willful ignorace of the facts and the GLARING hypocrisy.

And, while these "hippies" are playing dead on the sidewalk in support of their beliefs what are you doing? At least these people are willing to sacrifice something and endure a little hostility and public scrutiny. What are you sacrificing for your beliefs? NOTHING. That's why you continue to support this trumped up war--it's costing you NOTHING!

True, there are terrorists in the world who "want to kill us..." but we're creating more every second with our short-sighted approach to fighting them because we're not only killing "them."

Have your war...enjoy your war...it's costing you nothing.

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

"The fact that you even ask this question speaks VOLUMES about what you DON'T understand. Can you say Halliburton, Boeing, and Lockheed Martin? War is big money, Blessed. I'm surprised you didn't know that."

-Are you seriously making the statement that the only reason we have developed and used pinpoint weapons technology is to put money in the pockets of the developers? What idiocy? These weapons save lives. Both of the citizenry at the location of impact and the soldiers doing their duty.

"Wrong. I don't want to get rid of the military. That's the problem with people like you...you see black and white, never gray. You think because people suggest alternative means to an end, they want to get rid of the military. Who taught you to draw such dramatic and erroneous conclusions?"

-The wacked out liberals who repeatedly come up with loser ideas like this one.

"I love how conservatives want to take the high road on this women's rights thing. This from the same lot who believe American women should be home, barefoot and pregnant, dutifully servicing their husbands as dictated by God. What about the women in Saudi Arabia? "

-Gee, I can't remember the last time I set my wife on fire for not wearing her burkha. Oh and have you ever thought that some parents might actually love their children and make the sacrifices necessary to stay home with them during the most important years of their lives rather that ship them off to daycare so they can get a job and make the lexus payment? No? Are you a parent?

"What are you sacrificing for your beliefs? NOTHING. That's why you continue to support this trumped up war--it's costing you NOTHING!"

This is such a tired arguement. So let's leave it up the soldiers making the REAL sacrifice. The majority of the military believe in the work we're doing over there. They see the truth not the crap the alaphabet soup networks shove down our throats and claim to be the truth.

xenophonschild 8 years, 7 months ago

Things have come to a sorry pass when I have to agree with a bunch of damned conservatives . . . but they are right.

A case can be made that the West has been at war with Islam ever since that fly-specked dreck oozed out of the Middle East. Islam was once - by the end of the Crusades - a vibrant society, with the most accomplished scientists, mathemeticians, poets, philosophers, physicians, and architects west of China.

First the Mongols, then their own religious theocrats, decimated their society and predilections toward secular thought - sending Islam into long centuries of decline - while the West moved away from theocracy - no thanks to that wretch Thomas Aquinas - toward secular humanism.

It may be that our ancient hostility will be resumed, in earnest. No more pussy-footing about some tin-horn dictator in Iraq, or Libya, or Yemen. Islamic fundamentalists hate us with a passion so many of you who post on this site simply cannot comprehend. The images of hijacked jetliners crashing into skyscrapers fill them with delirious joy. Their hatred is social - in that we are secular; religious, in that their religion requires that non-believers be destroyed; and racial - in that we are, for the most part, white Europeans.

One long radioactive ribbon of glass, from Morroco to the farthest reaches of Muslim Borneo. That would do the trick. Mecca and Medina would disappear, literally and figuratively. No human would be able to approach their sites for a hundred-thousand years.

Something to think about.

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Blessed--

Do you deny that many people have gotten rich off military technology? Do you deny that we've got more nukes than necessary to anihilate this planet? A lot of good it did us against a bunch of boxcutter wielding terrorists. And, a lot of good it's serving as a deterrent. It's not helping us much now in our ambiguous war on terror.

And, to all you who still believe Saddam was behind the terrorist attack...REALITY CHECK! That was Osama, remember? You know, the man all our military might and technology can't seem to locate/kill? Yes, money well spent.

I guess you missed the recent poll where upwards of 70% of military members surveyed said enough already. We want to come home.

And, no, I'm not a parent, but I'm pregnant with twins and because of that have been put off work, with no paid leave to care for my children, which puts me in a financial bind. I will find myself being paid less than both men and women without children when I reenter the workforce, and during the time I DECIDE TO STAY HOME with my children, I will lose out on work credit toward social security, but the nanny next door who watches the neighbors' kids will earn social security credit. In other words, you don't have to set your wife on fire in order to deny women and children rights. Again, another extremist argument attempting to pass as logic. And, listen to any true religious conservative and they'll tell you the problem with our society today...women in the workforce. Just log on to Phylis Schflay's eagle forum or listen to Ann Coulter for two seconds...both on your side, both want to take away women's rights.

You failed to address the hypocrisy of our alliances with Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, China...all brutal dictatorships.

paladin 8 years, 7 months ago

The Final Solution? And where would that leave us? What about China?

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Xeno-

They are not right. There is a distinction to be made between religious fundamentalist and the average citizens of these countries. Those you are agreeing with lump them all together and don't give two sh**s about the innocents. How could they? Their kill' em all and let God sort 'em out attitude proves it!

xenophonschild 8 years, 7 months ago

Conservativeman:

I must respectfully disagree that the Arabs merely took credit for the achievements of civilizations they conquered.

In history, Abun Jafar Muhammad al-Tabari (838-923) was the Livy of Islam. His Annals of the Apostles & Kings, particularly Part Two, is a sober, occasionally vivid, history of Sasanian Persia. His greatest successor, Al-Masudi, in his Meadows of Gold, surveyed the geography, biology, history, customs, religion, science, philosophy, and literature of all the lands from China to France; he was the Pliny as well as the Herodotus of the Moslem world.

Arabs freely borrowed from the Greek culture that survived in Syria, and even requested books from their nominal enemy, the Greek emperor. Arabs took Greek treatises on mathematics and extensively developed the science. The greatest Muslim mathemetician - perhaps the greatest in medieval mathematics - was Muhammad ibn Musa (780-850), who we were required to study in high school. He wrote on the Hindu numerals; compiled astonomical tables which were standard for centuries among astronomers from Cordova to China; formulated the oldest trigonomical tables known; collaborated with 69 other scholars in drawing up a geographical encyclopedia; and in his Calculation of Integration & Equation gave analytical and geometrical solutions to quadratic equations

Arabs did groundbreaking, original work in medicine, philosophy, literature, art, and music. After the Mongol Hulagu, Islam was too devastated to resist the power of the theocrats who snuffed out secular thought for their own advantage.

bankboy119 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst,

Is your husband/boyfriend taking care of you?

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Okay Rightthinker, but you can't start a war and claim you're doing it for virtuous reasons i.e. protecting people from a brutal dictator like Saddam when you ally yourself with brutal dictators who can offer you something. You simply can't have it both ways. I understand that the situation is complicated, but come on. The world sees who we ally with, and they know all our moral arguments are nothing but BS!

Conservatives do this all the time. They defend the war with moral reasoning e.g. Saddam's a dictator, killed his people, we want to spread democracy...then, when you shoot holes in the argument, they fall back on... "hey, war is a necessary evil, people suffer, violence will never go away, they're terrorists who hate us," thus undermining their initial position of war for benevolent reasons.

WHICH IS IT?

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

What do you mean "taking care of me?"

xenophonschild 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst:

When it comes to righteous indignation, you should be at the head of the line. You are, to put it bluntly, getting screwed royally. Your circumstances should be noted inre your eligibility for Social Security, and you should not hesitate to contact your congressman and complicate the life of at least one of his staff.

I very well be wrong, but I don't think so. Islam is not like any other, ordinary religion. It is extremely puritanical, patriarchal, and does not tolerate well other faiths or religions. Even ordinary Muslims - taxi drivers, shopkeepers, patrons of outdoor cafes - will, given enough time and circumstance, assail you should they discover you are an American, and try to convince you to foreswear Christianity and embrace Allah.

"Moderate" Muslims are not the same animal we see in moderate Republicans, or moderate Democrats. Moderate Muslims still rejoice in attacks upon America and Israel; they simply won't do as much themselves.

Their religion controls too much of their society, their civilization. They are, at the very least, an object lesson to us not to let the Dobsons, Falwells, Robertsons, and their ilk get power in our society.

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Okay Xeno,

I've never been to a Muslim country, and though I know many Muslims who live here, it's possible that I don't know everything about Islam and followers.

However, common sense tells me that dropping bombs on them, setting up bases in their countries, relying on them to fuel our day-to-day lives, selling them weapons, and propping up dictators is asking for trouble.

If what you say is true, and the average American seems to want to believe this is true, why would we, even for one second, buy Bush's "spreading democracy" bull? Are we really that dumb or do we just love war?

xenophonschild 8 years, 7 months ago

Conservativeman:

We must exercise caution, lest we attract the attention of the liar Arminius; or, even worse, the Catholic apologist Lepanto 1571.

I have no affection for Muslims, or Arabs. It is my fondest wish that Hillary will either placate their hostility toward us, or eviscerate them from the planet. But the truth of their scholastic achievements cannot be denied. The Jesuits who taught me emphasized that we owe the very presence of paper to the Arabs. After they captured Samarkand in the 8th century, they learned from the Chinese the art of making paper, which they eventually refined and introduced to Sicily and Spain, then to Italy and France. Might seem like a small thing now, but it was a monumental addition to civilization.

You are quite right in that Arabs "transmitted" a great deal of knowledge from the Greeks, and others, but they also did original, groundbreaking work of their own. For example, an Arab caliph (c.860) engaged a staff of astronomers to make observations and records, to test the findings of Ptolemy no less, and to study the spots on the sun. The Arab astronomers measured a terrestrial degree by simultaneously taking a position of the sun from both Palmyra and the plain of Sinjar; their measurements gave 56 2/3 miles - half a mile more than our present calculation; and from their results estimated the earth's circumference to approximate 20,000 miles. One of them (Abu-Farghani) wrote an astronomical text which remained an authority in Europe for 700 years.

I could go on an on, but the point is, they were an extremely developed, vibrant secular society. They bore the brunt of the Mongol incursions, and were very nearly destroyed utterly. What remained after the Mongols withdrew, the mullahs and imans and ayatollahs claimed as their own, and refused to let secular thought live and thrive as before. When the Genoan (or was it the Venetians, I can't remember) defeated the Muslims at the battle of Lepanto in 1371, it was the end of Muslim power on the international stage, and Islam went into a steep, stuporous decline.

If they were to again embrace secular thought, it would be a miracle of such magnitude that some of us would even sing paens to your dead Galilean.

bankboy119 8 years, 7 months ago

I mean giving you financial support while you are unable to work.

xenophonschild 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst:

Unfortunately, yes . . . we really are that dumb. Democracy has no grip or place in the Middle East; they are familiar only with the rule of dictators, strong-men, and religious figures. Islam itself is not a religion for a settled, secure society; it is best suited for people making a transition from a nomadic, rootless lifestyle without any higher power than a clan chieftan, to a settled society with laws and common moral strictures. Once the transition is complete, Islam is more of an impediment to civilization than it is a plus.

Again, unfortunately, we cannot discuss the Middle East without factoring in Islam, for it is the single most dominant variable to people living there. We may think oil is the major variable, but it is not. Islam trumps everything . . . including democracy. Turkey has been able to scrape by for eighty years, since Kamaal Attaturk, but their democracy is emperiled by growing Islamic fundamentalism, as is the fragile state of affairs in Eygpt. When Mubarak goes, chaos will follow.

The point I want to make is, democracy is a strange flower to plant in such unhospitable ground. They have no prior experience or confidence in democracy, and the very grim reality that Iraq is quickly breaking away into separate Kurd-Shiite-Sunni regions underscores that "democracy" will probably be a failed experiment there. What of the 2,500 dead, 10,000 seriously wounded in our armed forces? How will their sacrifices be explained?

xenophonschild 8 years, 7 months ago

conservativeman:

I think it's safe to say we agree to disagree. Reality is that the Middle East is Muslim, and Islam is the enemy.

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Bankboy,

I managed to save a good deal in preparation for time off work, but yes, my husband has an income, as well.

xenophonschild 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst:

Good luck with the kiddies. I write literary fiction and the female lead in the book I'm writing now - A Smile From Xenophon, about a small-town Kansas sheriff who struggles to keep his community alive during the Great Depression/Dust Bowl - delivers twins, even though she is extremely narrow in the hips.

Lepanto1571 8 years, 7 months ago

Xenophon, really. "Catholic apologist?" Attempts at marginalization by absurd labelling only makes you appear argumentatively castrated.

Enough of the formalities.

C-man's assessment is valid. The "Exceptions" view of history is an intellectual cancer today. You really out to try the "rule" version. You should also focus on the keyword "re-transmit."

I will say that Averroes, who is upheld as a pinnacle of Islamic philosophy, while certainly enlightened by Islamic standards, and successfully re-transmitted parts of Aristotle back to the West, fell flat in his commentaries. Aquinas was appalled by the errors of logic in Islamic philosophy and went on to develop the Summa Contra Gentile in response, (BTW, yet another classic of western thought by someone you continue to fail to neutralize). Averroes commentaries are generally never mentioned in serious scholarship and with good reason. Arab/Islamic philosophy is not something one typically majors in today also for good reason.

For those interested, read "Sword of the Prophet" by Serge Trifkovic. Another excellent source is Victor Davis Hanson's "Carnage and Culture" who easily cuts to the root of this myth, in an East vs. West comparison of technologies and methods of inquiry.

I would also suggest:

"The Myth of Islamic Tolerance" by Robert Spencer or his "Politically Correct Guide to Islam (and the Crusades).

and,

"The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam: From Jihad to Dhimmitude: Seventh-Twentieth Century" by Bat Ye'or

In full disclosure, of these, only Robert Spencer would be considered a religious person. I add this for the sake of those who find need in labelling their adversaries as "apologists."

Anything good that came from Islamic culture happened in spite of it. Don't take my word for it, sample these authors.

Lepanto1571 8 years, 7 months ago

xeno: "When the Genoan (or was it the Venetians, I can't remember) defeated the Muslims at the battle of Lepanto in 1371, it was the end of Muslim power on the international stage, and Islam went into a steep, stuporous decline."

Genoese, Venetians, Spaniard, and Papal League! Venice was where the Arsenal resided. The Arsenal was proof positive of Western technological, scientific and manufacturing prowess, that the Turk could only replicate (and only then after hiring Venetians and Genoese); The Arsenal relied on no technology from the East and did not spring up over night. Pretty much the exact opposite of what you claim with Muslim technical superiority. The Genoese were also included, of course, as the name Gian Andrea Doria reveals.

Hanson covers this brilliantly in Carnage and Culture, all from a secular perspective.

Lepanto took place in 15 (FIFTEEN)71. What's the sense of having a name that you won't pay attention to.

While Lepanto is clearly a high-tide for the Ottoman, it was brought about by their defeat in Malta in 1565 by the terribly out numbered Knights of St. John. ALthough you are technicallly correct, the Ottomans did rebuild their Galley fleet within two years, but were gradually neutered until Sobieski crushed them outside the gates of Vienna in 1683.

It is no wonder you don't recall the details, your Jesuit fathers didn't want to burden you with the knowledge that a host of misled Catholics actually defended the West at three critical breaking points, and handed it to you on a silver platter so you could intellectually vandalize it, thus allowing you to preach a new Gospel according to Marx (Karl that is).

I hear the propaganda of Islamic intellectual superiority quite often. I just have hard time finding much that wasn't co-opted as witnessed by their 400 year state of intellectual anemia.

xenophonschild 8 years, 7 months ago

Lepanto:

I did not, and do not intend to, propagate any idea or intimation of Islamic intellectual superiority. Prior to the Mongol invasions, Islamic society was among the most brilliant and vibrant on the planet. After the Mongols, Islamic theocrats asserted themselves, stifled any resurgence of secular thought, and assured the decline of Islam.

My point is that religious entities should never be allowed to control secular thought. Which brings me to your wretched saint, Thomas Aquinas. If I remember correctly, the Jesuits note that he, essentially, spent his life presenting Aristotle's philosophy in Christian dress. To his credit, he quoted Avicenna (who you conveniently ignored in your tiny pantheon of Islamic scholars) al-Ghazali, your Averroes - whose system of thought he contested in his youth - Ibn Gabirol, and Maimonides (Bam-Bam) as precursors of Scholastic philosophy of the thirteenth century.

Aquinas was a champion of reason - which should recommend him to me - but he defends the indefensible. Jesus was a man, not God. The entire subsequent edifice of Christianity is false. Aquinas said, in your Summa Theologica, that the very limitations of knowledge indicate the existence of a supernatural world. God reveals that world to us in the Scriptures. I must have missed the part of the bible that speaks about quantum physics and superstrings. Aquinas did well for a scholar of his time . . . but you should not forget that he lived in the 13th century, and did not have access to the information we do.

I do agree with your wretched saint that God, not man, is the center and theme of existence. But God is an "It", no a he or she; and God is an abstraction that controls matter through natural physical laws . . . as outlined by Spinoza.

Finally, your saint maintained that "angels" constitute the highest grade of creation. They are incorporeal intelligences, incorruptible and immortal. They serve as ministers of God in the government of the world; the heavenly bodies are moved and guided by them; every man has an angel appointed to guard him, and the archangels have the care of multitudes of men.

Oh yeah. Much greater than Spinoza. Almost as great as my Aunt Bertha.

Lepanto1571 8 years, 7 months ago

Xenophon, much of this is covered ground regarding Aquinas and Spinoza. Go back and read my three replies to you in "Faith." Spinoza's hypothesis is unreasonable, as I have few questions. (I'd be glad to go back and cut and paste for us to discuss here.)

You favor Will Durant I know, yet he begrudgingly considers Aquinas one of the 10 greatest minds of all time, and embarassingly fails to elevate your beloved Spinoza to that list.

Perhaps his judgement can be fallible as I contend?

"I must have missed the part of the bible that speaks about quantum physics and superstrings. Aquinas did well for a scholar of his time . . . but you should not forget that he lived in the 13th century, and did not have access to the information we do."

The bible remains silent on neuro-surgery, auto mechanics, Marianas Trench, the Himalayas, and cannon artillery. I must have missed the part where it was intended to serve mankind as a science text.

What specifically in Planck-level sub-atomic mechanics based on probability and theoretical physics has invalidated Aquinas' premise?

Lepanto1571 8 years, 7 months ago

Xenophon,

I wanted to add that I am glad to hear that you "do not intend to, propagate any idea or intimation of Islamic intellectual superiority." Not only is that be something we would agree upon, it would be an exercise in futility.

BTW, I figured you would have read "Carnage and Culture," Hanson devotes the entire first chapter in Xenophon and the March of the 10,000. The first chapter alone is worth the price of the book alone in synopsizing the superiority of the western way of war through innovation, technological prowess, open inquiry, and attitude.

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst,

I'm very sorry for your situation, but you made your bed. It has become fashionable for liberals to make second-class citizens out of stay-at-home mom's so don't give me that crap about the religious right keeping these women down. My wife is a stay at home mom by her choice and I agree completely that she should earn some sort of social security credits or maybe a tax credit but you libs don't seem to like my family to keep the money we work so hard to earn. My wife stays at home because she knows that she is the one that can best provide for the needs of our children, not the daycare.

And get real, a few months of not earning social security credit over the course of an entire lifetime won't amount to didley squat. Get over it and come up with another excuse.

For your children's sake, I truly hope that you get married and the decision is made to have one of you raise your children rather than shipping them off to daycare. The sacrifices can be made, you just have to have the guts to do what is right for your children.

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

Oh, and in the military poll you quote, the question was asked of the soldiers whether or not they thought they should come home. What soldier in wartime doesn't want to come home. 58% said their mission was clear.

As for the Saudis, the Chinese and their ilk, I pray that we don't trust them. Unfortunately oil drives the world. We aren't allowed to tap our own national oil resources in fear of harming a few caribou in the great white north. So, until we can come up with a viable alternative fuel we are forced to keep good relations with the Saudi's and others. It sucks and it is hypocritical, but what else would you have us do? Let us provide our own fuel sources and then that whole corner of the world can go to h@!! for all I care.

What good are nukes? In can be argued that the presence of nuclear weapons directly led to the end of the cold war. The nuclear arms race put the Russians in the poor house. Unfortunately the Russian threat was replaced with an Islamic one now armed with Russian weapons.

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst,

Maybe you could stop posting all day long and find a way to earn money from home to aid your dire financial straights. Or better yet, save your 24.99 a month or whatever it is and cancel your internet. It's all about sacrifices, but some of us just aren't willing to do what is right.

latinlab 8 years, 7 months ago

"This was the beginning of the World Peace Prayer Society -- a genuine peace movement to spread the message and prayer May Peace Prevail on Earth. Mr. Goi believed that as more and more people are touched by this prayer and begin to live and act in the spirit of this message, a great transformation would take place in global consciousness, bringing about peace and harmony in our personal lives as well as in the world at large." Are they serious? Oh and Arminius... "Allthings conservative doesn't say much about your unbiased perspective... I did read your blog and well... Maybe you should try reading less conservative stuff and picking up a copy of The Economist, which is often abit more objective. I really hope you don't watch Fox News. Really.

bankboy119 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst,

It's good that you have some one to take care of you and taking the initiative to save is a lot more than most people do. I hope for the best for all 4 of you.

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Blessed 3x

You have REAL nerve. You make so many WRONG assumptions about me, that I don't even know where to start; however, I am NOT SURPRISED at your ignorance and your unwillingness to hear a voice outside your own. You are of no worth to our society because you're convinced you know what is right and good for everyone. Your gall is infuriating, but typical.

You claim that I have made my bed by choosing to stay home and raise my children???? I'll tell you the bed I've made...I went to college, served four years in the military, got out, taught public school, earned a graduate degree, got a good job, and at the age of 34, have decided ALONG WITH MY HUSBAND (you assumed I'm not married) to start a family. I've done everything this society says we're to do, and guess what....it's still not enough to afford me the financial stability my family needs while I stay home for a year to care for my children. And it's still not enough for the likes of you and people who think like YOU!

So, your response/solution to all this is that I should shut off my internet and try to find work from home. Well, my husband also works and his work requires that we have the internet. And, I don't think starting a business from home while I wait to give birth at any minute is prudent. Maybe I'll start working on this brilliant idea of yours after I return from the hospital.

You sir, ma'am, it...whatever you are...are an absolute shame. You have no capacity for compassion and you place no value on the experiences of others. You are so narrow minded that you believe YOUR limited experiences in life lend you the credibility/insight to make judgements about others'.

And, the reason why we don't have any of the programs in place for working mothers isn't because of LIBERALS...it's because conservatives believe investing in such programs wouldn't be necessary if mother's would just stay home.

Perhaps God just loves you more than he does me. He's deemed you far more worthy of blessings, well-being, and riches. Guess what BLESSED...see you in hell!

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst,

You must be kidding me. The feminists have force feed us that if a mother stays at home to nuture her child they have somehow failed.

http://www.albertmohler.com/commentary_read.php?cdate=2006-02-24

We are working at cross purposes here a little I believe. I think that there is no more important job than being a stay-at-home mom.

your words:

"This from the same lot who believe American women should be home, barefoot and pregnant, dutifully servicing their husbands as dictated by God."

Then you say you have chosen to stay at home with your children. I say good for you but what the heck were you taking about before. Which is it?

My internet example was simply that, an example. When my wife first started staying at home, we did without a lot of things. We drove old cars, we didn't have internet or cable. We didn't go out a lot. As time progressed, we became more financially stable and some of these luxuries came back. There are always ways to make the sacrifices necessary.

I carpool and drive an older car. I don't expect anyone to pay my way now just as I didn't expect anyone to pay our way when my wife was pregnant.

If you want to place the blame where it squarely belongs look no further than the gov. 30% of my paycheck goes to the government. More through sales taxes, gas taxes, property taxes. I figure nearly 45% of everything I earn finds it's way into the hands of the government. What a load of crap. Don't offer some government hand out, but rather get the government's hand out of our money.

"And, the reason why we don't have any of the programs in place for working mothers isn't because of LIBERALS...it's because conservatives believe investing in such programs wouldn't be necessary if mother's would just stay home." -mefirst

It was Bush that raised the child tax credit and lowered taxes to help families. It helped my family out tremendously. What are the dems doing? Fighting to eliminate the tax cuts. Really support families, huh. You can claim child care expenses on your taxes and most companies offer flex plans that can use pre-tax dollars for child care and other expenses. I do wish that my wife would earn social security credit, but who are we kidding. That is a doomed program that is awash in ineffeciency and corruption and neither me nor my wife will ever see it's benefit. And your right, with a parent at home, there would be no need for child care expense deductions and the like. But then, we simply must have our 150 channels of digital satelite television.

Having a baby is a big responsibility. I'm glad you have chosen to stay at home. I wish there were programs in place to offer a benefit to mothers that do just as you and my wife are doing. You are going to have the most important job in world, after you have those babies, I want to look at them and ask yourself if you want a daycare provider to raise them, and, if not, what can you do to avoid that.

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Rightthinker,

Exactly. I'm not complaining because life hasn't been handed to me on a silver platter. I'm complaining because I know there are so many people out there working hard, doing what they're supposed to, and "the dream" continues to elude us, despite living frugally, within our means.

And, I agree that many people put themselves in a bind by overspending. My husband and I have a dozen friends in that boat, and we refuse to sink along with them. So, we've prepared ourselves the best we can to provide for our children while I'm off for a year taking care of them, but there are countless others who work hard, yet can't save because they live paycheck to paycheck just paying bills.

How is it that people like Blessed don't recognize this? Do these people live in a freakin' vacuum? Perhaps...or perhaps they chose to villify people in these circumstances to avoid having to sacrifice anything themselves. I simply do not understand it.

I also can't understand why these same people are opposed to new ideas about how to make this society better for everyone...not liberals or conservatives, but families and children.

And yes, I'm no fan of the right, but I'll be the first to admit that Dems aren't doing much for me lately either.

mefirst 8 years, 7 months ago

Blessed,

These tax cuts, for people in my tax bracket, will save me about $15.00. Since I arrived in KS (used to live in a Blue state), I've paid more taxes and have gotten much less for my tax contribution.

Perhaps as a society we should begin re-evaluating our priorities and start living up to the ideals we claim to hold dear.

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

mefirst,

Unless the dems kill it, thank to President Bush you are about to receive $2000 in tax credit. How's that for helpin'? More than the dems will ever do. All they seem to know is how to raise taxes.

As for the $15, do you have children now? If not, well, these are tax breaks aimed at families, if you do, you are lying.

blessed3x 8 years, 7 months ago

Arminius,

It amazes me that people can sit back and complain that the tax cuts only benefitted the rich. We are by no means rich, yet President Bush's tax cuts save us thousands of dollars a year and most people earning less than my family either don't pay anything in income tax or end up making money throught the child tax credits or the earned income credit. It boggles the mind. They'll argue with you and swear they don't save a dime and it's just an outright lie.

MountainLion413 5 years, 12 months ago

Sadly, I don't think Judy Carman ever reads these blogs.If that's true, and I think it likely - I'm very disappointed in her.Blessed3x, I know your story near the start of this thread was a satire. A few years ago, I'd have fought with you over it. Today, I just wish she'd read your play, and yours and everyone else's comments here, and be willing to talk with you herself. And you with her.The one thing that's missing here - and most important - is a direct dialogue between her and those who most sharply disagree with her.I knew Judy a few years ago, and got to know her, and how she thinks. I just wish she'd participate in the debates her words start here.

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