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Old 06-25-2012, 06:39 AM   #181
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Originally Posted by financeguy

Just because you've applied your idea of what conservative values represent, and found them wanting, and then, no doubt, not found yourself wanting and duly congratulated yourself on your social conscience, doesn't make it true. I don't accept any of the characteristics you've applied to conservatives as applying to me. I don't fit any of these characteristics that you've outlined and applied to conservatives.

If you seriously and genuinely don't believe some on welfare treat it as a more-or-less permanent, life-long lifestyle choice, and/or a means of financing their drug habits, then come to Dublin some day, and I'll point them out to you. I'll show your their pastimes (principally, hanging around, claiming dole, court appearances, taking, buying and selling drugs), I'll explain how they use the public purse as a means of financing their lifestyle choices - better yet, we can talk to them directly, and they can explain themselves. And they're completely unapologetic, by the way - they literally don't know any better. All these people I'm talking about are 100% white Irish ethnically, incidentally, so there's no racism in this. It's not like in the US, they can't blame it on slavery, or something that happened to their great-great-great-grampy back in the 1860's or whatever.
Never once did I deny that those people exist. I think the difference is that I view them as exceptions to the rule, while you view hard working people fallen on tough times as exceptions to the rule.

That is, unless YOU are denying that those people exist.

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Old 06-25-2012, 11:48 AM   #182
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Originally Posted by PhilsFan View Post
This is the most infuriatingly obtuse thing I've read in a long time.

You have it exactly backwards, FG. It is the liberals who are realistic about the nature of life being harsh, not the conservatives. The conservatives are the ones who perpetuate bullshit notions like the American Dream, the idea that life will reward so long as you work hard. It is the conservatives who say that life will only treat you poorly if you are lazy.

The liberals are the ones who actually have the wherewithall to stand up and say, "There are hard working people who are getting dicked over by the system." There are people out there who work their ass off and have nothing to show for it purely out of circumstance. Liberals are the ones who are realistic, the ones who say that life is hard, and some people are getting an unfair shake for no reason.

Conservatives will just say that you're only poor if you're lazy. That's unrealistic. You see that as pragmatic. It's actually just being an uneducated asshole.

I'm not calling for a system where the people who have good jobs have to finance the people who aren't that fortunate (the notion that this is a "lifestyle," as if it is some fucking choice, is bullshit and you should know better). But I am calling for a system that recognizes its own inherent flaws. Liberals propose a system that is realistic about class structure in this country. Conservatives propose a system that implies that class is a direct result of what people deserve.

So don't fucking tell me that conservatives are the realistic ones. It's a lie. A bitter, rotten lie to its very core.

after reading that, even if I were predisposed to agree with your premises, I would be turned off by the name calling and rude tone

If one wants to further this side of the argument I would suggest a better written response.

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Old 06-25-2012, 12:18 PM   #183
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You are the last person who should be giving pointers on writing style.
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Old 06-25-2012, 12:26 PM   #184
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I wonder what the ratio of on topic responses to complaints about writing style is in this thread
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Old 06-25-2012, 12:28 PM   #185
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I can't believe how much ground we've covered without accomplishing anything. But I suppose that's to be expected when the topic is basically "let's talk about things people do that are bad."
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Old 06-25-2012, 11:44 PM   #186
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So, back to sin...

Originally Posted by maycocksean View Post
I hear what you're saying but I wasn't really referring to the sensationalized true crime stories that the media flogs. I'm actually thinking more of the things that don't get covered, that pretty decent people both near and far don't like to think about. Everything from the wars playing out across the globe to the anonymous crimes of domestic violence, the state of our environment, the state of our economy, not to mention your everyday ass-holism that comes with impatience, selfishness, arrogance and so on. In that sense you're right this is more or less the same as it's always been throughout history. This is also the part where the conversation about sin begins for Christian.
Gotcha. And I think I was trying to refer to some of that stuff, too, but I don't think I clarified that well enough, so again, sorry for the misunderstanding.

Originally Posted by maycocksean View Post
"I am the world and you are the world" (from a song by Live. ..anybody remember that band from the mid-nineties? I hear they remained popular in Australia for awhile after the passed the scene in the states. . .but I digress). I think trying to accept the reality without being overwhelmed by it is an important balance to strike.

I'd like you to unpack "the way religion frames the debate about sin and ways to remove yourself from it." I'm not sure I follow your line of reasoning.

Also, despite some differences on specific activities, I don't think that there is that much disagreement between people of faith on what constitutes sin, at least not to the point that understanding is impossible.
1, I do remember that band, yes . I like a few of their songs.
2, well, it kind of alludes back to what I'd been mentioning in the thread-the contradiction apparent that we're full of sin from the start and that we have to do this and that to try and repent for said sins (and even then it may not be enough), but yet we can also have a savior come in and free or forgive us so easily from our sins. Plus, even with a savior our problems are still there, we haven't stopped sinning just because this savior's blessed and accepted us or taken the fall for us (as Jesus did). The choices just seem too simple on either end, I think-someone can save us all or we have to fight to prove we're worthy of forgiveness, there doesn't seem to be much middle ground. I don't disagree with either worldview, I think both schools of thought have valid reasoning and can see the appeal of them, but I think they're too pat a solution to the problems. If that makes sense.

And you're right on the second part, so I'll rephrase my original statement-what constitutes sin can be confusing (some extreme faiths think dancing is a sinful action, some see homosexuality as sinful as a couple of the ones that might stir up debate), but maybe what I should say instead is, okay, so we're all guilty of sin of some kind. Fine. I can accept that. But are all sins equally bad, or are some worse than others? The rankings can be confusing. Sometimes I look at what some churches get upset over versus what they overlook and it seems like the two should be reversed. But of course, that can be a matter of opinion.

Plus, I was also thinking about the fact that so many denominations is proof that there's been some pretty big disagreement at various times somewhere.

Originally Posted by maycocksean View Post
I've often said that the Christian faith isn't so much about telling us how to live a good moral life as it is about dealing with when we don't.
I can agree with that.

Originally Posted by maycocksean View Post
"I've heard that too, and I suppose there is some truth in it. But sexuality remains the arena in which that power is exerted. Not trying to imply anything by that, just observing.
No, yeah, you're right, and I understand where that makes the distinction confusing sometimes.

Originally Posted by maycocksean View Post
"Me too.

One more thing I wanted to add. Acknowledgment of sin in the Christian faith often means confronting on our status quo, and requiring us to go outside of our comfort zone. It often means that the "me" I was content with all along might not be so "okay" after all. For many people that reality alone is enough to dismiss the whole notion of sin all together.

But I think there is something to be said for a healthy sense of discontent if you will. It's all a balancing act though, and I'll be the first to concede that religion has often used guilt as a tool to control it's followers. Throughout history opportunistic folks have realized the usefulness of religion as a means of using and controlling others. If you can tap peoples deepest fears and anxieties and convince people you have The Answer, you've got yourself a remarkable amount of power. It's why I think Jesus' harshest criticisms were always of religious people, particularly the powerful ones.

Of course opportunistic folk have found other ways to tap into people's anxieties too--advertising for example, and many a self-help author and motivational speaker.
I wholeheartedly agree with this as well, and I think that's part of what I was trying to get at above with the whole "the way religion frames the debate about sin" stuff. I think sometimes it often comes off as a massive guilt trip and is more obsessed with our failings than focusing on the fact that, yes, we fail, we're human, but they're willing to help us rise above our failings instead of sitting here telling us we're lost causes or something.
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Old 07-01-2012, 11:45 AM   #187
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Simply to respond to the first few pages of posts ( because my eyes began to cross through the several subsequent pages...), I do not relate to a concept of sin, because I find it a purely religious term and I am not religious. Having grown up with religion and religious people, the word sin doesn't offend me either.

I believe morality only comes into play when it affects others. So any thing I may think -- sexual, devious, loving, violent, generous, selfish-- is a free for all without any moral significance as long as I do not carry it outside in a way that hurts someone, as long as I do not lie to myself with self-serving justification that taking it outside is acceptable in some way.

I do agree though that thought, image, fantasy, without self-awareness, can deaden you to others, blur the line between thought and action--so with all freedoms comes the responsibility of self-monitoring that you do not cross that line.

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