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Messages - Charles Austin

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1
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: Yesterday at 09:13:03 AM »
I’ll call BS on that, Peter. There are probably doctoral dissertation being written on how conservatives have turned against science, And how that has worked its way into the highest levels of the Republican party.
Am I the only one old enough here to remember how in the 1950s Adlai Stevenson was said to be a bad candidate for the presidency because he was “too smart,” and an academic “egghead”?

2
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: Yesterday at 08:50:35 AM »
Monday-from the Times morning report newsletter
   The political divide over vaccinations is so large that almost every reliably blue state now has a higher vaccination rate than almost every reliably red state.
   Because the vaccines are so effective at preventing serious illness, Covid deaths are also showing a partisan pattern. Covid is still a national crisis, but the worst forms of it are increasingly concentrated in red America.
   Some of the vaccination gap stems from the libertarian instincts of many Republicans. “They understand freedom as being left alone to make their own choices, and they resent being told what to do,” William Galston has written in The Wall Street Journal.
   But philosophy is only a partial explanation. In much of the rest of the world, vaccine attitudes do not break down along right-left lines, and some conservative leaders have responded effectively to Covid. So have a few Republican governors in the U.S. “It didn’t have to be this way,” German Lopez of Vox has written.
   What distinguishes the U.S. is a conservative party — the Republican Party — that has grown hostile to science and empirical evidence in recent decades. A conservative media complex, including Fox News, Sinclair Broadcast Group and various online outlets, echoes and amplifies this hostility. Trump took the conspiratorial thinking to a new level, but he did not create it.
   “With very little resistance from party leaders,” my colleague Lisa Lerer wrote this summer, many Republicans “have elevated falsehoods and doubts about vaccinations from the fringes of American life to the center of our political conversation.”
   With the death count rising, at least a few Republicans appear to be worried about what their party and its allies have sown.
   In an article this month for Breitbart, the right-wing website formerly run by Steve Bannon, John Nolte argued that the partisan gap in vaccination rates was part of a liberal plot. Liberals like Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Anthony Fauci and Howard Stern have tried so hard to persuade people to get vaccinated, because they know that Republican voters will do the opposite of whatever they say, Nolte wrote.
   His argument is certainly bizarre, given that Democratic politicians have been imploring all Americans to get vaccinated and many Republican politicians have not. But Nolte did offer a glimpse at a creeping political fear among some Republicans. “Right now, a countless number of Trump supporters believe they are owning the left by refusing to take a lifesaving vaccine,” Nolte wrote. “In a country where elections are decided on razor-thin margins, does it not benefit one side if their opponents simply drop dead?”

3
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: Yesterday at 05:02:11 AM »
I believe one is allowed to be ignorant about two, maybe three fields. Mine are mathematics and Chinese art.

4
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 26, 2021, 11:03:47 PM »
Really? I never took a single math course in college.

5
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 26, 2021, 10:37:44 PM »
My only word to you, Pastor Butler, is: Get vaccinated. Tell everyone around you to get vaccinated. And when advised to do so, wear a mask.

6
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 26, 2021, 07:53:34 PM »
Pastor Fienen:
That would get them out of your hair and no longer troubling your well regulated society.

Me:
Some really mean people have suggested that very thing, and wondered if God is culling the herd. I do not agree  with those mean people.
I muse, in connection with the discussion upstream about "trust," that is is not simply whom you trust, but how you decide who is trustworthy.
This, I dare to day, means that you must be able to make your brain cells rub together in meaningful ways, that you either have some "book learning" or listen to those who do and that you recognize your limitations.
Elitist? Only if you think it's better to listen to smart people than to stupid people. Or if you think that those with some education are trying to pull the wool over your eyes at every turn.
"Gee, this stuff cures my horse from an infestation of worms, and someone says I should take it for COVID. Sorry, Trigger, I need your meds."
"Well, of course the election was rigged; those Jewish space lasers did real damage."
"Bob Woodward just wants to sell a book, he doesn't care if what's in it is true or not."
Good grief! We want people to listen to orthodox Lutheran clergy rather than semi-atheistic nutballs or modern anabaptists. Why can't we say "Listen to the smart people, not the conspiracy idiots, whose claims are being disproved every day"?

7
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 26, 2021, 06:39:24 PM »
And one of the best religion news writers I ever knew back in the day, a freelancer he, never worried about taxes. He never made enough to pay very much.

8
Your Turn / Re: Coronavirus news
« on: September 26, 2021, 05:26:37 PM »
James S. Rustad:
And perhaps we should stop worrying about those who don't get vaccinated as they will soon be immune anyway.
Me:
Or dead.

9
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 26, 2021, 05:24:23 PM »
And that old “food pyramid“ was partly fabricated by those selling certain food products. And at a time when we barely knew body chemistry and how nutrition truly works.

10
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 26, 2021, 04:59:15 PM »
Peter:
Some people would rather govern themselves even if it means being governed poorly. Other people gladly sacrifice their freedoms to experts who know better. I would be healthier eating meals prescribed by the FDA. I’d rather be unhealthy and eat what I want. If someone proposed to ban the private purchase of food and have a government program provide nutritious meals to everyone, they have public health on their side. But liberty would rightly object.

Me:
And you claim I deal in extremes!
Some people want freedom to use cocaine and other deadly drugs.(In moderation of course.) Do you propose we just let them do it?
Some guys with a lot of money want to rip the top off mountains so they can get to the minerals underneath, and  to hell with the impact on the environment. Is that OK?
For some the entrance to those questions are yes, no, and maybe. That’s why our constitutional system of laws and checks and balances comes into play and collectively, in a way, we make decisions. Once, we collectively decided to ban beverage alcohol. Oops. Bad idea. So we collectively decided that we would no longer do that.

11
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 26, 2021, 08:56:40 AM »
So Caring for our natural resources when they are in danger is not the job of the government? And yes, the EPA was not necessary in 1789. Does that make it invalid today? In 1860, people died of phony medication. Does that make the FDA unnecessary today?

12
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 26, 2021, 05:27:04 AM »
Schools. Roads. Bridges. Police. OSHA. FDA. CDC. Courts. Local health departments. Army. Navy. Air Force. Marines. Coast Guard. Building codes. Fire departments. EPA. And, among still more things, the mechanics needed to put our constitution into action. All - and probably more - “necessary functions “ of government. (Including, I believe, the responsibility to mandate vaccines in a pandemic.)

13
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 25, 2021, 11:02:03 PM »
Peter:
Yes. The state necessarily defends the nation, protects individual rights, regulates international trade, etc..
Me:
And there is much mischief and disagreement in that “etc.” that will not be resolved here.

14
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 25, 2021, 10:29:40 PM »
Peter:
That’s why the state should be kept strictly to it’s necessary functions. Coercion is a necessary evil that is best minimized, not maximized.
Me:
Can you explain the “necessary functions” of a state, preferably our Constitutionally governed state?

15
Your Turn / Re: Lutherans and Socialism
« on: September 25, 2021, 08:08:13 PM »
Peter writes:
If you can’t tell the difference between voluntary and coerced, you have a serious problem. I can quit the church, or a club, and stop contributing. I can’t do that with the state. That means the former is voluntary, the latter is coerced.

I comment:
No, you are wrong. You could emmigrate to a state where conditions are more to your liking.  You could move. People do it all the time, I hear. Nothing forces us to continue as citizens of the United States. But so long as we are citizens, we are obligated to obey its laws and we owe it our proper loyalty.

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