'Religions must push back against a wave of "intolerant secularisation", a British Cabinet Minister will say during an official visit to see the Pope.
Baroness Warsi, who is Muslim, wants Europe to become "more confident in its Christianity".
Christian roots "shine through our politics, our public life, our culture, our economics, our language and our architecture", she will argue.
I have to agree. Ever since 9/11, religions of all kinds have become suspect to zealous militant secularists. Which means about 90 per cent of the world's population are now considered deluded and possible dangerous.
How do you live with that level of paranoia?
Anyway, it is good to see a Muslim Minister standing up for beleaguered Christians.
Since the Warsi woman is a member of an obnoxious rightwing political party, she has nothing of any relevance to say to me.
Stick with your tribe. Retire to the hills. Never be disturbed by a new idea ever again. Yawn...
Sorry to be cruel but that was the weakest response in this thread.
I would check out the idea of dis-identification. Who knows what insights might await you?
Be a keeper of the light. It is never a hopeless cause to fight fear or evil. Our time here can be said to be a series of adverse events that challenge you to fully experience life.
All the faiths of the world save a few are grounded in ideals that are good in the eyes of any logical person. It is when we let our core universal truths be forgotten that we allow ourselves to be deceived.
We all should know tomorrow isn’t promised today, so the fear that is rampant in our time is no different that the fear any human has ever had to bear. The only choice left is how will you spend your time? Manifest fear, or live for the day and the hope of tomorrow.
Why the fixation on fear? From my earliest childhood I've known that we are born, live, grow old and die, a pattern reinforced by the examples of our cat, rabbits, budgie and the occasional great aunt. Nothing frightening there.
Fear only enters the equation when people feign knowledge about eternal torment after death and use it to frighten children and impressionable adults. Such people should keep silent.
The cat, rabbits and budgie all approached death with equanimity because no-one had filled their heads with nonsense.
'The cat, rabbits and budgie all approached death with equanimity because no-one had filled their heads with nonsense.'
Animals obviously don't suffer from existential anxiety. They lack the understanding to consider the issues of sickness, old age and death.
Human beings are not necessarily very different. Most people take the denial route with these serious issues.
People in denial are of no use to someone who is sick, or facing death because often they are just too scared to even look the sufferer in the eye.
Is this the fear that you are refering to?
No, I was referring to the fear that I referred to by name - namely the fear of torment after death.
Most people I know are quite realistic about old age, sickness and death. The ones in denial are those who refuse to learn from all the evidence of the natural world and insist that they have special knowledge about life after death. Now, that's denial.
Happily, I have no fear of torment after death.
I am wondering why it prays on your mind. I cannot imagine it is simply because others believe it.
Do you think we have a duty to intervene and tear away the children of Christians, Muslims and Buddhists (where I live they believe in hell) and so save them from falsehood and creased brows?
That would be an awful lot of tearing and weeping and gnashing of little infant gums.
You are too fond of twisting my words to your own agenda.
Nothing preys on my mind, thank you very much.
Tearing children away from parents is barbaric. Why on Earth would I advocate that?
I think, though, that education should steer clear of religion and in particular should encourage critical thinking and judgment. Would you sign up for that?
There is certainly nothing wrong with critical thinking- and plenty of Christians have managed it despite your poor opinion of them. If you come across a stupid Christian the problem is that they are stupid not that they are Christian. In the same spirit, if you come across an aggressive atheist the problem is the aggression not the atheism.
I think my main issues with people like Dawkins et al are 1 the arrogance, 2 the lack of discrimination (ideas like- a few people, who happen to be, religious are a problem so all religion is a problem) 3 the inability to simply accept people for who they are.
I think, if one advocates critical thinking, one should be prepared to follow where it leads, even if the conclusions are contrary to previously held beliefs. Critical thinking is a way of life, not a tool to apply only within a comfort zone.
I'm not much of a Dawkins fan either, by the way. I don't think he writes especially well. But I accept him for who he is.
When you approach the originality of critical thought displayed by Christians like Gregor Mendel, Isaac Newton, the Venerable Bede, Max Planck, Jane Austen, Georges Lemaitre, Leonardo Da Vinci or even Tony Blair you will certainly have a right to occupy the high ground.
Lemaitre was a Catholic Priest who first proposed the Big Bang Theory.
Mendel was a Friar who gave us the Science of Genetics.
Newton spent more time on his idiosyncratic religious beliefs than, optics, calculus or the laws of motion.
The list is pretty long if you really want to go back in time or throw the philosophers, poets, architects and composers into the pot.
Yes, he did. Odd then that his optics, calculus and laws of motion have stood the test of time so much better than his idiosyncratic religious beliefs. Why do you think that might be?
The issue is critical thinking. Newton had it in spades and it was one of the many attributes of Christian Europe. A combination of Jewish and Greek intellectual rigour was always going to do well.
There might come a point when atheists have made an equal contribution to our understanding of the world. The foundations will always remain the fruits of Christian culture.
If you find that shameful there is always denial.
Atheism has only become mainstream quite recently, so the available "sample" of atheists from which to draw examples of great thinkers is much, much smaller than the sample of people who follow/have followed a religion. Give it a couple of hundred years - then you might be able to draw a comparison.
Speaking of Greece, what about those ancient Greek thinkers - do you think that belief in Zeus, Hera et al. was directly responsible for the philosophical, scientific and mathematical advances of Socrates, Plato, Euclid and so on? Somehow I suspect your answer will be "no".
I think that religion and science are two sides of the same coin - the desire to explain the world around us. You can't say that the former is responsible for the latter - it's more a case of people being responsible for both.
I agree with that, though I tend to see religion as an ancient art form, aiming to provide aesthetically pleasing allegories and stories (which it does) rather than actual explanations.
Christian religion has been supportive of science since the works of Aristotle were reintroduced into Europe by St Thomas Aquinas and his followers in the Thirteenth Century.
If Greek Mythology is anything to go by, I am guessing Greek Religions had an astonishing insight into the human condition and would certainly have valued free inquiry.
...but some Christians weren't that supportive, as Galileo was only too well aware. Saying "the Christian religion has been supportive of science" is a blanket generalisation.
I would hazard a guess that the majority of ancient Greek thinkers didn't have religion at the forefront of their minds when they did their stuff. So perhaps it's more the case that religion didn't actively get in their way, rather than being a positive force.
The trial of Galileo is one of those little pieces of history that protestants have always seized on to demonstrate their undoubted superiority. It is also one of the many things that protestants have passed onto the atheists (their true successors in the UK at least)for use as a weapon against all Christians.
If you look at the trial, you will find that poor Galileo was a pawn in a power struggle between the Pope and the Jesuits.
The Pope was a personal friend of Galileo and the Pope had always supported his work. The less educated were undoubtedly upset that Galileo's work displaced human beings from the centre of the universe (a predominantly Greek idea).
The Jesuits used that unpopularity and Galileo to put pressure on the Pope with a show trial.
Fellow Catholic scientists had no issue with the new astronomy and gradually the uneducated got over their shock.
Someone needs to write a book along the lines of 'Atheist Mythology and the Forces That Drive It'
Protestants are the antecedants of atheists? Ooooh, someone tell that to all the creationists on this forum (most of whom are probably some form of Protestant).
BTW, creationism is a prime example of the conflict between religion and science (or to put it more accurately, the conflict between science and those religious people who find science threatening). I take your point that many religious people throughout history have also been scientists, and that there doesn't necessarily have to be a conflict between science and religion. But things aren't as simple as you paint them - as you yourself said, earlier in this thread: "I think my main issues with people like Dawkins et al are... 1 the arrogance, 2 the lack of discrimination (ideas like- a few people, who happen to be, religious are a problem so all religion is a problem) 3 the inability to simply accept people for who they are."
Point no. 2 works just as well if you turn it round and say "a few people who happen to be atheists are a problem so atheism per se is therefore a problem".
Interesting historical viewpoint. The blossoming of 'modern' Western thought that began with the Renaissance and progressed through the Enlightenment was more to do with the rediscovery of Classical mathematics, science and philosophy that had been carefully hidden from the people for centuries by. . .??
There is NO critical thinking in that response. In fact, it is completely contradictory to what the Bishop was talking about and it is the Bishop who cannot accept people for who they are, arrogantly and chock full of discrimination.
I don't think I've ever met a zealous militant secularist. Do they have horns?
I have seen Dawkins described as Darwin's Rottweiller in the Guardian. Seems about right.
As far as I'm aware, Dawkins' only weapon is argument. That hardly constitutes militancy. Most persecution of religious people is by other religious people.
The word militant, which is both an adjective and a noun, usually is used to mean vigorously active, combative and aggressive, especially in support of a cause, as in 'militant reformers'
Aggressive is the main element. And in the case of Dawkins, pointlessly so. He seems to imagine that the ideas of Darwin have some social relevance which they clearly don't.
Christian ideas certainly do have social relevance and have been the glue of European society for 2 thousand years.
I suppose that if you have a siege mentality you will see militants everywhere. The vast majority of irreligious people merely want to go about their business in peace. Western European society is predominantly post-Christian.
People in Europe certainly want to go about their business in peace. And it is good to see advocates of that like Warsi.
Incidentally, do you have any examples of wars or conflicts driven by religious convictions- from the last few hundred years. I mean? I often see comments like 'religion starts wars' in these forums. But i can never think of any that qualify after the end of the Reformation.
Open your eyes. Israel/Palestine? Israel v. Iran? Afghanistan? Al Qaeda-9-11? Pakistan v. India? Religion-fueled conflict is causing trouble in many parts of the world.
In each case religion is one of the identifying features of groups that are in conflict.
In Israel, two groups are struggling over the land of Israel/Palestine.
I don't imagine anyone in Afganistan wants to convert you to their particular brand of Islam.
In fact, I can't think of any 'religious conflict' that involved one side wanting to impose articles of faith or points of theology or a special kind of worship on another. So why are they labelled religious conflicts?
Finally, Al Quada are hardly representative of Islam and are a small group of zealots exploiting the many resentments that exist in the Middle East and its periphery.
Well, it could be argued that the U.S. in Afghanistan is trying, unsuccessfully, to impose Western Judeao-Christian values on the Taliban. Iran has publicly advocated wiping Israel off the map. It seems to me that religious fanatics are promoting conflict all over the world.
You mean the US Govt are dispatching missionaries to Afghanistan? I thought they were soldiers. I imagine geo-political motives and that long quest for hegemony over Eurasia are more relevant.
As a matter of fact I think there are American and other missionaries in Afghanistan, but I doubt they have been sent by our government. There are American extremist missionaries in several African countries who have supported the execution of homosexuals. These kinds of activities are an example of why people are becoming less religious.
Well, a prominent objective appears to me to be establishing women's rights--schools for girls, allowing women to work outside the home, listen to music, dress the way they wish. This has nothing to do with Asian hegemony. More like futile nation-building efforts. I wrote the Taliban off as a so-called civilization when they dynamited the centuries-old giant Bamyan Buddhist statues.
Small correction. Iran has stated something along the lines of "Israel's occupation of Palestine must vanish from the pages of time".
Then by the same token, the 'zealous militant secularists' that you cite (if they exist) are hardly representative of rationalism.
True, but I do not see Quakers trying to put an end to how Christmas is celebrated by Evangelicals. I do not even see Muslims trying to end the Christmas celebrations like I do secularists.
Secularists are trying their BEST to end the celebration of Christmas. Next, it will be Easter. People can not even put Christmas ornaments up any more without some gripe. You can not even say "Merry Christmas". It is not X Mas either. Jesus is not a X. Jesus is the savior of mankind.
"Secularists are trying their BEST to end the celebration of Christmas. Next, it will be Easter. People can not even put Christmas ornaments up any more without some gripe."
That's a bit of an exaggeration in my experience. The only objections I'm aware of is to spending taxpayers' money to put up Christmas symbols on public (city or state) property while excluding the same privilege for other religions. The town where I live in Michigan is decorated to a fair-the-well in the shopping district and many home owners decorate their houses and yards in ways ranging from a simple wreath on the door or a Christmas tree in the window to quite elaborate decorations of their houses and yards. The residents on our block put up candelaria candles on Christmas eve in front of every house, whether they be Christians, Jews or athiests. I haven't heard a peep out of any "secularists." Some overly PC people say "happy holidays" rather than "merry Christmas," but more say "merry Christmas" to others regardless of their religions. I've received "merry Christmas" greetings in person and cards from Jewish and non-church going friends.
You mean he advocates a scientific theory that has been proven and widely accepted for many years all over the world?
No, he uses a scientific theory for his own purposes. He imagines that if religion could be disposed of then reason and light would flood our currently benighted world. Which is probably the opposite of the truth.
present religion would be disposed is unavoidable future but unfortunately we would create new religions...
Reason is the opposite of truth? [puzzled]
Reason has a poor history in human affairs.
Eugenics is a perfectly reasonable approach if you want to improve the biological condition of the human race. Culling the weak works in animal husbandry, after all and Darwin helps us to understand why it works in the natural world.
Reason was a great rallying cry during the French Revolution and filled plenty of baskets with human heads.
I would rather take my chances with the religionists.
Reason is responsible for everything around you in the modern world - developed after religion suppressed it for a thousand years of dark ages.
The French Revolution was a totally justified regime change from an obnoxious system of government and a manner of removing the 1% from their positions of lords over a totally suppressed feudal society. It could be recommended for America today, a few bush, cheney, banker, corporation owners heads in baskets would improve that society no end.
You say religion does not cause war and yet you must be aware that bush would never have had enough popular support to attack Iraq for no valid reason without the religious vote, whipped up by anti muslim-ism. Bush talking about his 'crusade' and the soldiers in training with their guns and bibles ?? or did you miss those images and words before they were buried and forgotten by the right wing media ??
Just because someone uses "reason" as a rallying cry, it doesn't mean to say that reason or secularism is responsible for their actions.
So rather than blame reason for the behaviour of the French revolutionaries, it would be better to look a bit deeper.
Similarly - despite being very secular myself - I would hesitate before blaming religion for the world's ills.
Truth is proven by reason. If reason disproves something, it is not truth.
Perhaps, reading his books or attending his lectures might change your assessment of Dawkins as opposed to what someone in the media calls him.
You're free to do so, however calling out those who have far more insight into how the world works seems rather petty and hypocritical.
I notice that Dawkins has something to say re the Warsi comments posted on his web site from an interview on Newsnight.
http://richarddawkins.net/videos/644963 … ht-14-2-12
Excellent video. It shows the Bishop to be a deceiver and narrow minded fool, the more he talks, the more damage he does to Christianity.
Thanks for posting it.
Reading around the responses to Warsi from commentators in the liberal press, I am pleased to say that Dawkins is seen more as a pest than anything else.
There were some quotes from John Rawls (probably the most influential liberal philosopher of the last half century) along the lines of 'religions should be under no obligation to conceal evidences or expressions of their faith.'
There was some soul searching along the lines of 'are Christians really being forced to hide their faith for fear of ridicule and judicial attack?'
In other words, liberals are still (for the most part) keeping away from pointless, cruel and disrespectful attacks on religion and wanting to distance themselves from the likes of Dawkins.
So where are the attacks so prevalent in these forums coming from?
Now, your acting just like the Bishop.
What attacks? Are you being attacked or is your faith being attacked. Does your faith not attack others and their beliefs? Are you and the Bishop stating that others should just bow down to your faith and allow it to rule our world, because that is exactly what the Bishop wants.
And, THAT is the attack folks like Dawkins are trying to explain.
Ha! Ha! The militants are the ignorant fundamentalist ideologues of all stripes.
Paraglider. That was my laugh for the day. Thank you.
it is good that europe is increasing becoming non religious...existing religions would die down ,sooner or later...but does that mean we wont have religion...nope...new religions would be created ...thats part of human history...we keep creating religions...
to see people leaving religion...as he admitted himself...i am fine with pope staying in rome...no issues as long as religion moves out of human life...but as i said we would manage to invent new religion as we did in past...so religion would still stay with new book, new version of god...
The Pope is not in Rome; he is in the Vatican City State. It may be small and surrounded by greater Rome and Italy, but it is neither Roman nor Italian.
Yes, and Washington D.C is neither North or South.
LOL. A zealous militant securalist. That made my day, mostly due to the sheer inaccuracy of such a claim. What secularist wants to push a holy book to be taught in public schools, discriminate against homosexuals, and not fight climate change because "God will save humanity?" Some people...
Don't forget holy wars and inquisitions!
The climate always changes. Climate change is nothing more than global money exchange between the rich and poor nations of the world. So many scientist say that global warming aka climate change is over exaggerated. Second, the Holy Book has done more to promote goodness than vise versa.
"So many scientist say that global warming aka climate change is over exaggerated."
How many? Can you name some? Where do you get this misinformation?
98% of climate scientists say that the science of global warming is clear and well established. Why is it so hard for you to accept that?
I appreciate you trying to use facts Ralph, But the right-wing is immune from such information.
Hey there, Sooner. I am pleased to have this opportunity to exchange ideas with you. I have so much to learn and so little time.
Do you mind if I ask you why you inserted an absurd political label in your comment?
Suppose I said that I am not yet convinced global warming data are harbingers of a pending catastrophe. Would you label me as right wing without knowing the reasons behind my statement and without knowing anything about my political philosophy? What if I told you I voted for a Democrat? Would you then label me a right-wing Democrat or, perhaps, a liberal right-winger? What if I said I was an American Democratic, closet-Conservative, Libertarian, anarchist, pinko-Socialist leaning Independent. Now, what does that tell you about global warming data?
Political labels are a useless distraction when discussing the causes and effects of specific issues. They only have value to those who need a label to attack because they do not have a good grip on the facts.
Thanks, Sooner, for joining in the discussion. I would love hearing about the facts that support your position on global warming.
It's not an absurd political label. None of the positions on the major issues of the day supported by the current Republican party have any factual basis whatsoever. Tax cuts for the rich don't create jobs, being gay is not a choice, torture does not work, evolution occurred, and abortion is not murder.
Your attempts to derail the issue of denying climate change are very amusing. If you are a socialist who denies climate change, you would be correct to say you are not a right-winger. But your denial of it is supporting the future destruction of the planet, and it is indefensible. However, conservatives are much more likely to deny climate change. Which current GOP candidate has outlined a plan to combat it?
And if you seriously believe you are a closet conservative, libertarian, anarchist, pinko socialist leaning independent, I would say you probably need to learn the meanings of your positions, considering libertarians want to ensure private property, and socialists want to abolish it...
You're also right that labels tells NOTHING about global warming data, but anyone even REMOTELY informed on the issue knows the scientific consensus. To say I don't have a "grip on facts" shows how intellectually dishonest your reply is so far. Perhaps you should read the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or read Gallup and their surveys of practicing climatologist, or how bout you read information from the National Academy of Sciences, or read NASA's website? Or you could enroll in an environmental science course at your local community college and find out there is a consensus that way .
Anyone who had the slightest understanding of THE GREENHOUSE EFFECT would not be asking me what "data" I have.
Hi again, Sooner. Me back again.
Now, you confuse me even further. First, you defend your use of an absurd political label by saying, “ It's not an absurd political label.” Then you agree that the use is an error, “If you are a socialist who denies climate change, you would be correct to say you are not a right-winger.” This seems to be a contradiction or, perhaps, just double-speak. Either way, I submit it is absurd to disregard the reasons behind a person’s position on any issue based upon labels that inaccurately assume a political bent. You know what “they” say about people that assume too much.
Nor did I, Sooner, attempt to derail any issue. I tried to discredit the notion that a person’s opinion on any issue is a reliable indicator of his political philosophy. In a hypothetical scenario, if lived on a lake that was being polluted by a big industry and spoke out against big business on environmental issues, would you label me a liberal or a conservative, right or left wing? Within the same scenario, would you label my position on climate change as left wing or right wing?
My point is quite simple. One’s interpretation of the causes, effects, or solutions relating to any social issue is not a reliable indicator of political leaning! A person who favors extending unemployment benefits might be a liberal, a socialist, a Libertarian with an unemployed son-in-law, or a conservative, Republican banker with a conscience. Labels do not reduce the importance of their conclusions and they certainly do not make them less valid.
One more example of absurd political labels before I go. Examine your condemnation of ALL Republican supported issues: “None of the positions on the major issues of the day supported by the current Republican party have any factual basis whatsoever. Tax cuts for the rich don't create jobs, being gay is not a choice, torture does not work, evolution occurred, and abortion is not murder.” Now imagine all the Americans who agree that tax cuts for the rich do not create jobs but also believe abortion under some circumstances is indeed murder. Try putting a political label on each of them that will reliably predict how they will vote in November.
Thanks, Sooner. I do not think I am a threat to you or to the planet.
I defended the use on Republican politicians only. I already admitted I was incorrect to say a Socialist who denied global warming would be a right winger. They would simply be intellectually dishonest on climate change, putting the planet in peril, but at least they would be willing to feed everyone! The context was referring to Republicans though, not socialists. But you also failed to provide any current Republican presidential candidates who are in favor of curbing global warming in any serious way. Jon Huntsman gave lip service to the idea and he never garnered much support.
And if you don't think positions are a reliable indicator of political philosophy, you might want to study political science. That's one of the issues the discipline is concerned with, predicting elections and how people will vote based on certain characteristics. And certain issues break down very neatly along party lines, such as with same-sex marriage 69% of Democrats favor it, and only 28% of Republicans do. So if you want to be speak very strictly, when I refer to a group, I just mean the "majority" of that group, such as if a Republican said Democrats were in favor of violating God's word and supporting homosexuality, they would be mostly correct. But back to the point.. All I would have to do is ask, what do you think of climate change, and what is your position on abortion, and I could very reliably tell you which way a person voted. There will be outliers everywhere, such as something around 5% of the Tea Party identifying themselves as "liberal," but majorities are who elects the politicians. If 80% of Texans said they believed in God, and you met a Texan and didn't know anything about them, there is an 80% chance they would believe in God, and it would be RATIONAL for you to believe that based on the make up of the Texas population, unless the individual told you otherwise.
If you lived next to a lake that was being polluted, you would be speaking out because something was DIRECTLY harming you, a sort of physical reaction to a stimulus, which any human being would do, regardless of political party. However, Republicans across the United States are constantly complaining about environmental regulations, which without their existence would pollute our air even more. So basically it's a, not in my specific backyard, but very much so in everyone elses kind of issue. And if a higher percentage of Republicans favor environmental regulations and curbing climate change, they do a poor job of showing it with the politicians they elect. Democrats are guilty more of inaction and not fighting for more environmentally stringent regulations.
Your use of conservative, Republican, banker and conscience all in the same breath is quite amusing, considering millions of people in this country do not have adequate access to health care, billions starve across the globe, and the bankers are paying themselves huge bonuses still, even after they had to be bailed out. But that's a slight digression.
Actually, the political label is pretty simple. If you are a Christian, you are against abortion, and a white male, the chances are quite good you will vote Republican, and polls bear this out. In fact, if you truly believe abortion is the murder of innocent babies, then voting for whichever party was against abortion would be the most logical thing for you to even do. But you misunderstood my point. I simply outlined a portion of the current GOP platform to show that none of those issues have any factual support behind them. Any Republicans that disagreed with the GOP platform and took more moderate stances would not be considered a "right-winger." Words must have meaning.
You're also right that people can mix and match. But generally that isn't how it works, and sometimes can be contradictory, with Republicans calling for "limited government" because economic justice is a "private charity issue" while calling for the government to legislate against homosexuality and abortion, because they are "God" issues.
'One’s interpretation of the causes, effects, or solutions relating to any social issue is not a reliable indicator of political leaning!" So if someone says the government should not be spending money on abortions, they are against abortion in all circumstances except for the life of the mother, and they are against gay marriage, that's not a reliable predictor of their "political leaning?" That actually fits perfectly with the modern day GOP. Am I wrong on their official platform?
I think you misunderstood me with this whole label business. I was not saying EVERY Republican shared the views. But when the majority of a party supports policies, and then votes for politicians that enact those policies, that is the political philosophy of the party. And when a majority of a party takes views on certain issues, it is only rational by the laws of probabilities to believe the next person you meet will take that view and to speak of the parties in terms of the majorities. You wouldn't speak about Catholics in terms of the 20% that actually don't use birth control would you? That could be included as the minority, but not the make-up of the whole.
When politicians of a certain party take actions that the voters did not endorse, then the voters could not be blamed for that. The two parties do stand for different things though. They have some shared common ground, like your example with unemployment insurance, but it's like accusing a socialist of being in favor of abolishing private property, and the socialist replying well I am not in favor of abolishing it all, I only want it in certain areas, and then becoming upset with you for believing they wanted to abolish all private party. Many socialists do, and it is actually the dictionary definition of the term, in popular discourse.
I'll end with a quote from the HOUSE Republican's website.
"More taxation, regulation, and litigation will not create more jobs. Government takeovers of the economy have failed while the size and the scope of the federal government has exploded. Washington has tied the hands of small business owners and job creators with onerous regulations and backward fiscal policies that have stalled the economy, slowed innovation and destroyed jobs. We need common sense, pro-growth policies to give small businesses and entrepreneurs renewed confidence in our economy and to remove Washington as the roadblock to job creation." One does have a responsibility to look at all the issues a party supports. It seems as though you are arguing that based on the majority of a party, one cannot speak of it's political philosophy. I have no idea how that view could possibly be defended.
P.S. I do find you to be a nice guy, and I never thought you were a threat to the planet .
Hi Sooner. Sorry to take so long to reply.
I thank you for the kind words at the end of your extensive comment. I appreciate your taking so much time to explain your views. You did a fine job. Your points about label definitions are noted.And later…I will stand, however, with my assessment that it was presumptuous to label a poster a “right winger” because of his position on one issue. He might be a socialist, a Libertarian, or independent. Do we know? What ever his political bent, I fail to see how he can be judged to be “immune from such information” solely because he disagrees with one set of interpretations and conclusions. Labels used to assign people to political ideologies may work well in broad discussions of many issues but they get weaker and more unreliable when applied to smaller and smaller groups. They usually are useless when pinned on one person for taking a position on one issue. Forgive me for using the word “absurd.” Perhaps it was too harsh.
Then again, Wow! That really hurts! (Just kidding) I am supporting the future destruction of the planet! My reply was intellectually dishonest! I should read the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change! I am tempted to use the word “absurd” again.
Let me say one thing up front: I am a firm believer in scientific rather than anecdotal research. I am also familiar with the stat from my friend Ralph Deeds about 98% of climate scientists saying global warming is clear and well established. Still, there is a big distinction between the data and the conclusions. I am still uncertain about anthropogenically, manmade, induced climate change simply because cause and effect links are not universally accepted. In fact, the IPCC report is based on a flawed ideological perspective. It was widely criticized for heaping most of the blame for warming on carbon emissions. There is still the need for more research. Rather than engage in a “he said, she said” discussion, I would just point out there is significant disagreement from respected scientists and climatologist about many of the doomsday projections. As for declaring a consensus, only 52 scientists participated in the IPCC Summary in 2007. By December 2010, “more than 1,000 scientists had joined in the thrashing, if anything revealing a mounting consensus in the other direction.” (1) It would be intellectually dishonest of me not to explore other scientific opinions just because they disagree with the majority.
I have noticed that the rejection from the opposition is not coming from the ranks of the fringe and flaky. The InterAcademy Council (IAC) is a high-level group of the world's leading scientists. The board consists of the presidents of 15 academies of science and equivalent organizations representing Argentina, Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The IAC reviewed the 2007 IPCC Fourth Assessment at the request of the United Nations. In August 2010, the IAC responded that in their review they found little evidence-based science to support many of IPCC's conclusions about climate change. "From extensive oral and written input gathered by the Committee, it is clear that several stages of the assessment process are poorly understood, even to many scientists and government representatives who participate in the process," the report stated. "Most important are the absence of criteria for selecting key participants in the assessment process and the lack of documentation for selecting what scientific and technical information is assessed."
Dr. Ivar Giaever won the 1973 Nobel Prize in Physics. He supported Barack Obama in 2008. He also joined 76 Nobel Laureates in signing an open letter praising the President's "new initiatives in education and training, expanded research funding, an unbiased process for obtaining scientific advice, and an appropriate balance of basic and applied research to meet the nation's and the world's most urgent needs.” He is not one of your “right wingers” immune to facts. In September 2011, he resigned as a fellow from the American Physical Society, the leading professional organization of physicists in the US, because of the group's intransigent stance on climate change. He said he "could not live" with the organization's position that emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities were changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate.
I submit these facts, not to argue for or against climate change and/or the predictions about greenhouse effects, but to demonstrate that minds much greater than mine are not yet convinced. Should I be convinced? Perhaps, one day, I will catch up to you on your quest to save the planet. Or, perhaps, you will have to back pedal if the “consensus” suffers a meltdown.
Are we bad to have this discussion in a thread about Godless Europe?
(1) http://www.lakelandtimes.com/main.asp?S … leID=13931
I have no problem with long waits between replies. I often forget about these forums, and then when I come back and am reading through I remember them again! You're also right that not every individual who denies climate change is a "right winger." They could be any political affiliation! However, my point in this reply isn't really to go off on rabbit trails again. I'll just say I agree with you that the smaller a group gets, the better it is to ask specific questions to determine beliefs.
Now, the IPCC did have some organizational issues. I'm glad you brought this up, because I hadn't actually read about it. The press release from the InterAcademy Council website states, "The process used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to produce its periodic assessment reports has been successful overall, but IPCC needs to fundamentally reform its management structure and strengthen its procedures to handle ever larger and increasingly complex climate assessments as well as the more intense public scrutiny coming from a world grappling with how best to respond to climate change, says a new report from the InterAcademy Council (IAC), an Amsterdam-based organization of the world’s science academies." There were errors, such as the Himalayan ice caps, did not affect the overall results of the assessment.
But I can pretend that the IPCC never existed. There are a plethora of other scientific organizations that support the scientific consensus for climate change.
-http://www.globalchange.gov/- United States Global Change Research Program
-http://www.acia.uaf.edu/- Arctic Climate Impact Assessment
-http://www.nasonline.org/- The National Academy of Sciences
-http://www.interacademycouncil.net/24026/25142.aspx- The InterAcademy Council you cited in your evidence issued a report in 2007 calling for action. I suggest skipping to their "Case for Immediate Action" section.
-http://www.euro-acad.eu/downloads/memorandas/lets_be_honest_-_festplenum_03.03.07_-_final2.pdf- European Academy of Science and Arts
-http://www.caets.org/- International Council of Academies of Engineering and Technological Sciences
-http://www.interacademies.net/File.aspx?id=4825- Network of African Science Academies
-http://www.royalsociety.org.nz/organisation/panels/climate/climate-change-statement/- The Royal Society of New Zealand
-http://royalsociety.org/uploadedFiles/Royal_Society_Content/policy/publications/2010/4294972962.pdf- The Royal Society of the United Kingdom
-http://www.english.pan.pl/images/stories/pliki/stanowiska_opinie/2011/IAMP_STATEMENT_NOV_20102.pdf- Polish Academy of Sciences
And here is a quick youtube video showing scientific organizations I did not mention- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wuQEMOJl4lg
So I am unable to see why you believe there is not a major consensus and there are "growing numbers" of scientists who are skeptical of global warming.
Also, your use of a prominent physicist who supports Obama does not change the fact that thousands of other scientists working independently of each other are all reaching similiar conclusions. I think I was wrong to call you intellectually dishonest. That would imply you were being a spin doctor. I think it would be more accurate to say you were simply mistaken.
The rational thing to do is to believe the experts when they have evidence on their side. Doctors said smoking caused cancer, and now it's the consensus The tobacco industry tried to deny it, but they lost the public debate and the science. It's the same case here. Unless there is a smoking gun, it is not logical for me to go with a small minority. If the situation were to change, I would also change my position accordingly.
As to the place of this discussion, maybe it can help people on both sides of the debate. It is a bit of a strange place though huh?
Wow, it's that bad in Europe that a Muslim has to defend Christians. Oh well, I knew it was the beginning of the end of Europe anyway.
@cassie europe wont get finished and is moving in right direction of moving out of religion....only concerned should be too many muslim migrants who would take another 500 to move out of their religion...it is obvious that known religion wont be able to survive test of time....there is nothing new in it....now somebody might come up with brand new religion , till it too fails to survive test of time...its cycle known to human history since long...
A Partisan Power Play Won't Redeem the Bishops
http://nationalmemo.com/content/partisa … em-bishops
The Conservative Party does not have new ideas. The Warsi woman is spouting her stuff to please the good churchgoers of Middle England and other safe Tory seats. There is nothing new in the least in supporting a "christianity" that fits with Tory values. I bet if a more radical type of christianity were to gain prominence in Europe, Ms Warsi would be among the first to huff and puff about the need to control radicals and revolutionaries.
I have the fortune to be able to support excellent politicians with real ideas for how to improve society, at local and at national level.
'Are we bad to have this discussion in a thread about Godless Europe?'
God will probably forgive you (if He exists). Europe probably has a regulation or two that forbids it.
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