The Jeb Bush Train Commences

Yea, this sums up the Jeb train…

This is what voters will be subjected to for the next 22 months: A candidate desperate to please and to be understood, taking up the people’s time to get his message out over and over again, in different forms until someone applauds it.

Jeb Bush is like a corporate-created product that’s in the middle of a consumer focus group, looking for some sign of “like.”

I mean, when you are working from the assumption that you are better brother to be President than the last one, it’s just a matter of trying that key until it fits, because if Georgie could do it….

But anyway, as to Jeb’s comments, here is the crux of his argument.

“I hope that we can show respect for the good people on all sides of the gay and lesbian marriage issue – including couples making lifetime commitments to each other who are seeking greater legal protections and those of us who believe marriage is a sacrament and want to safeguard religious liberty.”

The problem here is that “respect” is not shown to one side in this debate. We could have a situation where all marriages are respected, but one side doesn’t want that. Instead we have this kind of “you must to be tolerant of my intolerance!!” rhetorical jujitsu that makes up the core of modern conservative thought.   (It should also be noted, this statement was released in part because Bush’s previous stance of not being a bigot didn’t fly with the Tea Derpers).

This isn’t an issue where “agree to disagree” works, as one sides wants to *literally* take rights away from the other and that other side *literally* just wants to be treated equally. It’s not apples and oranges, it’s Assholes and Americans.

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Intolerance of Bigotry in the name of Tolerance is not Hypocrisy, it is Progress

Perhaps seeking to blunt that criticism, Rubio acknowledged the United States has a history of discrimination against gays and lesbians. He added that his opponents pose what he called legitimate policy questions and urged a respectful discussion going forward: “Tolerance is also a two-way street.”

But he said he could not support such marriages despite a quick-moving shift in public opinion on allowing same-sex couples to marry.

“There is a growing intolerance on this issue,” Rubio said of those who back same-sex marriages. “This intolerance in the name of tolerance is hypocrisy.”

via Rubio: Same-sex marriage foes face ‘intolerance’ – Yahoo News.

Headline = point.

Also, it should be noted…no one is trying to deny the rights of folks like Rubio to marry, if one somehow feels inclined to cast him as the victim of the “folks who aren’t me”-marriage debate.

The World This Week, March 22, 2009

[videos forthcoming]

US NEWS

People thieving the electrons.

Obama: Economy hurts.  Duh.

Obama Budget Strategy raises questions.

New home construction gets a lift (month-to-month).

Small business help on the way.

Fed prints money like mad.

A couple economists agree that printing money is a good idea…today.

China wants a new global currency standard.

Palin to preach to choir.

McCain Twitterview a joke, a stilted lagging joke.

Feel the outrage….

….oh wait, we did that?

Probe into AIG bonuses launched.

Gassley suggest suicide for AIG execs, then back off to resignation and public flogging.

Laid off worked parades in front of AIG mansion.

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Pakistan moves closer to rule of law.

Iraqi government wants heads to roll.

Dead Sea Scrolls authors existence questioned.

Georgia v. stem cells.

Pope v. witchcraft and tribalism.

Everyone of the Book (Christian, Muslim, Jew) vs teh Gays.

Stop-Loss phasing out.

Obama talks to Iran.

Iran wants more than talk.

SCIENCE/TECH

The Frogopalypse.

Veggie garden makes a return to White House lawn.

Obama gets schooled on Special Olympics and bowling.  NOTE: Bowling not a particularly intellectual pursuit.

The Great Unkowns and the Unknowables.

In Defense of Love : Summation

You can begin to catch up here.

I would HIGHLY recommend you catch up before joining in, this is a conversation that had been going on for a while, and it would behoove one to read up before joining in.

Thanks.

In Defense of Love, Part II (the Fusion bit, charging now…)

To catch up to this discussion quickly, one has to but read this post and the comments.

Then this post, and the comments.

And then this post, and the comments. If you do that, you should be all caught up.

In response to my previous post, “In Defense of Love”, I also received an email on the subject from a friend of mine who wishes to remain anonymous.   That email will not be shared in full, but I will quote portions of it here.

As I asked for his permission to share that email, under that condition, and he acquiesced, I will be combining both responses to my “gauntlet” in the response posted here.

Sorry, if this gets a bit confusing, but it is often difficult to catch up to a conversation already in progress, as the Dude once said “Donny, you’re out of your element!”

Once you have caught up, feel free to click/scroll past “the jump” and continue reading…

“The Jump”

Continue reading

In Defense of Love

or as some people call it “Gay Marriage.”

Just a quick follow up to a conversation I’ve been having.  I don’t think this is going to make the first version of the book (although it might, because I like the phrasing). The setup is this post over here (yes, I’ve been engaging in various theological debates lately, why do you ask?).

This is a bit of my linguistic ju-jitsu, at its (IMHO) best.

The set up….

Can someone here quote me on what Jesus said, explicitly, about gay marriage?

And telecom laws, and wireless networks, and nuclear weapons, and stem cells, and evolution?

Thanks, and please make sure those words are in his, please keep the interpretations to yourself.

Yea, Joel, we probably aren’t going to agree on this one. 🙂

The Response…

You are most likely, right, Roy. I don’t believe that He actually addressed the issue directly; however, I do believe that His mission was not to address each and every issue, but to free us from sin.

I like this, because we had already agreed on a rather poignant point regarding the life of Jesus, which I ran into following up my false prophets post earlier (wordpress shares tags and its easy to find people interesting in talking about the same stuff you are).

I had read the bio over at that site for the proprietor and I felt him to be an honest believer, and a capable opponent.  It’s no fun beating up on people who don’t study this stuff, and can make good references and understand others.  He also seems to be a good man, which is important for this kind of stuff.  I found his handling of some “trolls” to be exemplary (check the about and bio pages for a good lesson on how to deal with such blog annoyances.  I usually don’t have that much patience (and I’m a patient man), and go for the virtual throat immediately.)

The Setup….it’s always good to be clear on terms….

Do you consider being gay a sin?

[serious question]

And maybe a bit on why?

Simple, to the point.  Give them enough room to draw the playing field…

I do (as I do corporate greed, among other things). It is against God’s order, His image for Christ and the Church. It is roundly condemned in the Old Testament (and the New – albeit I understand that some will differ with me concerning interpretive issues.) One of the commands in Eden was to multiply. It is impossible for two members of the same sex to multiply naturally.

To be sure, unless you have read the rest of my blog, I do not consider the Christian moral system that I hold to be a political system in any way and would not attempt to push my morality on others – as I also hold to the holiness tradition of the Wesleyans, some Pentecostals, etc…

And then bring in the nuclear weapons (well, recall that I already set us up the bomb, now one can set it off, like in Megaton)

Corporate greed is very well covered in the concept of the “the love of money” thing.

I would counter that “God’s Order” is now understood to be quite a bit more complex than Jesus could ever have understand [sp]. This was my point in bringing up other topics upon which no sermon was ever given. We have a knowledge of the workings of the Universe that far surpasses those of two-thousand years ago. Jesus gave no sermons on quantum mechanics, nor plate tectonics, not did he ever reference such modern and accurate conceptions of how the Universe functions.

I would also counter that the order to “replenish the Earth” has been accomplished and there are now humans everywhere from pole to pole and meridian to meridian. I would further counter that because of our zeal to “replenish” we now have enough humans living such a lifestyle as to put our own planet in peril (at least as a worthwhile ecosystem for our species).

In that context, how can it be a sin to live by one’s nature? In that context, would it not make sense in God’s infinite wisdom to have a class of human that would not add additional pressure to a “replenished” Earth?

There are many other factors that would make it impossible for a couple to multiply, including that disease of “life out of control” called cancer (which can destroy both ovary and teste).

Should they, too, be denied the right of marriage?

I appreciate your understanding of the difference between faith and politics, and am glad to hear it. However, it seems there is quite a bit of interpretation of “God’s Order” being done here that is not backed up by direct statements.

And Deb, if one’s body is a temple, obesity and gluttony are probably the worst and most common sins of the modern world. Yet I don’t see anyone keeping people who have no respect for their own bodies in that regard being considered “sinful.” Nor do I see people using this “sin” to deny them the rights of all other citizens(I realize you aren’t of that slant, polycarp).

And no, Deb, I don’t consider being gay to being in any way similar with being a killer or a thief. I would also ask how many gay people have told you, personally, they chose to be gay [ed. other than in the sense of finally accepting it]  In my experience, that percentage is exactly 0.

I’ve seen love in many forms and that includes the love of a man for a man and woman for a woman.

Do you not see that love, or do you consider it to be false?

I also think we both agree on how using the Old Testament in a discussion of Christ’s teachings is a bit of a non-starter. 🙂

Always end with a smilie.

Maybe a winkie.  Particularly if what you just said might go down sideways.

Question marks are used to trigger the automatic “query” response.  The data is provided and the argument begins to process before one *really* knows what one is reading.

Joel, I eagerly await your response.  As you are thinking, so am I.  Anticipating your next move, and readying my fusion weapons.  😉

Educating Rick Warren On What Jesus Said (and how He Acted)

I can’t believe I have to do this.  I was reading an interview that Rick Warren (of the Purpose Driven Life) gave and was struck by something he wrote.  So I kept reading the interview and was struck by a few other silly things he said.

Look, I’ve got nothing against Rick Warren personally.  From what I’ve seen he seems like a nice guy who does some good work.  My problem is with the lack of…shall we say…accountability of his theology.  And the lack of reason and logic in his worldview.   In his mind, what you do in life doesn’t matter, as long as you declare your love for God, it’s all good.

This leads to some really, really, nasty things when applied to real life, which is far more complex that it seems Mr. Warren is capable of conceiving.

Read on for that argument…

Continue reading

Obama Affirmitively-Actioned into Presidency (and other stuff Americans decid

I don’t know if you heard, but yea.  It’s a different world today.

And I’m very, very happy about it.

Obama Wins

Obama Wins

As I mentioned previously, this was a pretty big deal for me and a whole lot of folk.

As a quick note on the jocular title of the post….here’s the stats.

It turns out that saying Americans “retired” McCain would probably be one of the more accurate ways to explain the voting.  His age was a major concern for a lot of voters, which I think was accentuated by the Palin problem.

Ultimately, it turns out that people wanted to change the national (and Republican) policy of “concentrate the wealth” that we’ve been following for the past 30 years.  It seems that many think maybe “spreading the wealth” a bit could provide major dividends.  I happen to agree, for a number of reasons, mainly having to do with the idea that spreading some of the wealth will do wonders for many workers in the economic realm of “motivation.”

I thought this was a big deal also because of the world opinion.   It was something that didn’t show up on polls, and maybe was even a net-negative for Obama (in the weird world of U.S. politics), but I think it was Obama’s true stength, and that (r)ace-in-the-hole that will help a great deal in our negotiations with the rest of the world.

The whole world has to take a second look at the U.S.  A long hard second look.  And THIS IS A GREAT THING.   We’ve got a pretty amazing country here, and it’s something that many have forgotten, not the least of whom live here.  And now we’ve proved a great many people wrong.  Again.

We’ve raised the bar on Western democracy.  We’ve slapped racial bullshit in the face.  The United States of America elected a President who’s middle name is HUSSEIN.

You know what’s funny?  The only major demographic group, IN THE WHOLE WORLD, that is bothered rather than elated by this achievement of Martin Luther King’s dream of judgement on character over skin-color, is here in the U.S.  I hope and pray they’ll calm down and get it back together, I met some rather devastated people last night.  Some who genuinely believe we just elected a terrorist.  After all, his middle name is Hussein.

The world had become increasingly wary of this kind of U.S. after seeing some of our actions following 9/11.   World opinion was in a steady decline after Bush’s Choice to invade Iraq.   And Cheney’s Choice to torture some of the people we captured didn’t help either.  The CIA jetting around the world on black ops and weird rumors filled the air.  Any number of shady decisions and actions took place, the extent of which we may not know for years.

The decline in world opintion was precipitous, especially after the world’s sympathy was so quickly and openly offered to us after our own great tragedy.   In 2004, when the U.S. electorate endorsed the lies, and the war, and the torture, the world turned its collective back.

By 2006, we had stepped back a bit domestically, and I think we could see the peak of anti-U.S. opinion was probably in the 2005-2006 window.   By 2007, the world (and the U.S. electorate) was decided on Bush and kinda just ignored him.  Everyone had made their judgment and it was not good.   Once 2008 kicked in the world was watching to see what we would do.  Curious to see if their judgment of the 21st century U.S. was correct.  Looking back over their shoulder a bit, wondering if we’d regained our special-ness.

Our U.S.’ed-ness.

While the world judged Bush harshly, we did get that second (third, actually) chance to amaze the world.

And it would seem they approve.

With a couple of exceptions….

SUDANESE FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN ALI AL-SADIG

“We don’t expect any change through our previous experience with the Democrats. When it comes to foreign policy there is no difference between the Republicans and the Democrats.”

…actually I guess that’s about the only exception.  He’s an exception because he knows the genocide his government is pursuing in Darfur is going to get some real attention now (one would HOPE).

That being said, there were some other big ballot initiatives around the country.

Looks like the Mormons and Catholics got their bigotry endorsed in Cali, Florida and Arizona, the “straight” states.  They are now like Iran, where gays don’t exist…or have less rights…is there a difference?

Women retained some degree of control over their own lives in South Dakota and Colorado, and it’s time to spark it up in Michigan and get that gloucoma under control.

Obama lost Nebraska, and black and women Nebraskans lost the ability to sue for “employment fairness” (on a serious note re: the title of this post…it’s going to be *really* hard to argue for expanded or even continued affirmitive actions programs in a lot of places…expect more of this).

Oregon knocked down the “stay culturally ignorant” rule and Washington is paging Dr. Kevorkian.

North Dakota and Taxachusetts both voted against tax cuts (!)cliche evidence(!), and you can finally lose your shirt on a riverboat in Missouri.  Previously, you could only lose your shoes.

All in all, it was quite a day.