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  1. #81
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coriolis View Post
    All religions have comparable potential for violence, because all can be used by groups in power, or wanting power, to sway the masses. Christianity had eras just as violent as what we see today in fundamentalist Islam. The realization of this potential is strongly influenced by culture, and the degree to which a secular authority is present which can restrain the worst impulses of the violent religious.
    They might have comparable potential, but that is not equal potential. If you want to argue for equal potential, then you are guilty of using a false equivalence logical fallacy. There are concrete differences in Christian and Islamic dogma.

    1. The whole foundation of monotheism in Christianity and the hierarchy of the early church organization (and suppression of contrary "heresies") was directly tied to the promotion of a hierarchical, autocratic form of government. Prior to that consolidation, the earliest Christians were a much more diverse and free-thinking lot, truly more "hippie-like".
    There is nothing in Bible that demands any such hierarchy.

    2. The European enlightenment benefitted significantly from the superior knowledge from the Arab world, brought back through the crusades.
    Irrelevant.

    3. There were activities of mass destruction, such as crusades. On the other hand, Christianity was not coming of age during an era of media of mass communication.
    This is just an idiotic statement. If you are trying to draw equivalency between a crusade, which required tens or hundreds of thousands of troops, and a nuclear weapon, which requires only handful of people (if that) to acquire and detonate, you are guilty of self-delusion, at the very least. You want to know why modern American liberalism is criticized? You provided a textbook example right here. What a joke.

    I would call it a wash.
    More false equivalencies.

    1. Institutionalized Christian discrimination against other faiths persisted for centuries, throughout the middle ages and well into the enlightenment. Jews especially were subject to extra taxation, expulsion, exclusion from professions, and other sanctions. Sometimes they were even accused of conspiring with Muslims against the Christian society.
    But there is nothing in the Bible calling for an extra tax on Jews. Your dismissal or refusal to acknowledge this important fact just makes me /facepalm

    2. Christianity has the succession of Peter. The Catholics claim this for the Pope, but there have been two great divisions within Christianity over the centuries, and further divisions since. Catholic vs. Protestant violence has likewise continued for centuries.
    There is nothing in the Bible about the succession of Peter or the Pope. Again, you dismiss this importance of this.

    There's so much false equivalency in your response...I should thank you for reminding me why I reject modern American liberal philosophy and call myself a utilitarian. Sometimes I lose sight of that.
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

  2. #82
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    The word going around is that it's unusual to seen an RPG-7 in an un-orchestrated attack.

  3. #83
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    They might have comparable potential, but that is not equal potential. If you want to argue for equal potential, then you are guilty of using a false equivalence logical fallacy. There are concrete differences in Christian and Islamic dogma.
    Of course there are, but these do not correlate directly with any propensity for violence. Both the Bible and the Quran can be used to justify either violence or charity.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    There is nothing in Bible that demands any such hierarchy.
    There is more to Christianity than the Bible, just as there is more to Islam than the Quran. A view which ignores this is simplistic, and cannot account for the history and realities of either religion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    Irrelevant.
    Your labelling it irrelevant does not make it so. You claimed "Christianity was not coming of age in a world where there was another, more technologically advanced civilization meddling in its affairs." You are correct that Muslim civilization was not meddling in the affairs of Western Europe; the more backwards Western Europe had been meddling in the affairs of the Muslim world. Your mischaracterization of the relative state of development of the two societies, however, indicates a poor understanding of relevant history. This is unfortunately typical of policy makers in Western governments who attempt to engage with present-day Muslim societies. Probably one reason why we have so little traction in related conflicts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    This is just an idiotic statement. If you are trying to draw equivalency between a crusade, which required tens or hundreds of thousands of troops, and a nuclear weapon, which requires only handful of people (if that) to acquire and detonate, you are guilty of self-delusion, at the very least. You want to know why modern American liberalism is criticized? You provided a textbook example right here. What a joke.
    And this is just a non-sequitur. I am comparing the death tolls of real events, namely the crusades and actual acts of violence committed by Muslims against primarily non-Muslims, such as the Sept 11 attacks. If you want to indulge in speculation or hyperbole, be sure to remember that the U.S. is the only entity on the world stage to have used nuclear weapons so far, and that there are hawks in our government who would be willing to do so again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    But there is nothing in the Bible calling for an extra tax on Jews. Your dismissal or refusal to acknowledge this important fact just makes me /facepalm

    There is nothing in the Bible about the succession of Peter or the Pope. Again, you dismiss this importance of this.
    See comments on Bible/Quran above.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lateralus View Post
    There's so much false equivalency in your response...I should thank you for reminding me why I reject modern American liberal philosophy and call myself a utilitarian. Sometimes I lose sight of that.
    I didn't think one had to be a liberal to bother to understand the true complexity and historical development of modern conflicts. The role of modern communication cannot be underestimated, though exactly how it will play out remains to be seen. It certainly makes it much harder for fundamentalists to stamp out "heresies", and much easier for progressives to collaborate and coordinate their efforts across the globe. The biggest obstacle to progress on the Western side is simplistic interpretations of Islam and Muslim societies that are based more on prejudice and wishful thinking than on fact and historical realities.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  4. #84
    Senior Member Lateralus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coriolis View Post
    Of course there are, but these do not correlate directly with any propensity for violence. Both the Bible and the Quran can be used to justify either violence or charity.
    With a wave of your hand you dismiss these differences because all ideologies can be used to justify violence. You think you're being nuanced, but you're actually being intellectually lazy.

    There is more to Christianity than the Bible, just as there is more to Islam than the Quran. A view which ignores this is simplistic, and cannot account for the history and realities of either religion.
    Another dismissal of the difference between the religions. It's too complex for you to understand, so you want to dismiss whatever suits you. And being a liberal, you fall into false equivalency trap. All cultures are equally valid. All ideologies can be equally violent. Blah blah blah.

    If you're going to make these claims, back them up. Don't make vague assertions and claim your opponent has a "simplistic" view. I've already gone into some detail on my position, but you have done nothing but wave your hands dismissively, claim things are "complex", then claim my view is simplistic.

    Incidentally, I would agree that there are more to the religions than what is written in the Bible, Quran, and Hadith. But those other influences change over time, while the holy books do not. Religions go through cycles, which inevitably includes a revival of fundamentalism (believing in literal interpretations of holy books, whether it's the year 1200 or 2012).

    Your labelling it irrelevant does not make it so. You claimed "Christianity was not coming of age in a world where there was another, more technologically advanced civilization meddling in its affairs." You are correct that Muslim civilization was not meddling in the affairs of Western Europe; the more backwards Western Europe had been meddling in the affairs of the Muslim world. Your mischaracterization of the relative state of development of the two societies, however, indicates a poor understanding of relevant history. This is unfortunately typical of policy makers in Western governments who attempt to engage with present-day Muslim societies. Probably one reason why we have so little traction in related conflicts.
    This is nonsense and your "history lesson" is completely unnecessary. This doesn't even deserve a response because you're off on such an irrelevant tangent, I don't think you can find your way back.

    And this is just a non-sequitur. I am comparing the death tolls of real events, namely the crusades and actual acts of violence committed by Muslims against primarily non-Muslims, such as the Sept 11 attacks. If you want to indulge in speculation or hyperbole, be sure to remember that the U.S. is the only entity on the world stage to have used nuclear weapons so far, and that there are hawks in our government who would be willing to do so again.
    Here's the thing, if Europeans had access to nuclear weapons in the 13th century, humans might be extinct. Thankfully they didn't. Unfortunately, it is possible for a Muslim with a world view comparable to a 13th century European to get his or her hands on a nuclear weapon. I don't think this threat is nearly as immediate as Republican war hawks would have us believe, but it cannot be ignored. Your political correctness alarms are probably going bonkers now.

    What the US detonating the first nuclear weapon has to do with all of this, I don't know. I'll just write it off as another "history lesson".

    I didn't think one had to be a liberal to bother to understand the true complexity and historical development of modern conflicts. The role of modern communication cannot be underestimated, though exactly how it will play out remains to be seen. It certainly makes it much harder for fundamentalists to stamp out "heresies", and much easier for progressives to collaborate and coordinate their efforts across the globe. The biggest obstacle to progress on the Western side is simplistic interpretations of Islam and Muslim societies that are based more on prejudice and wishful thinking than on fact and historical realities.
    Please, you're doing the exact opposite of what you claim. You're dismissing concrete differences in the ideologies with a wave of you hand, then getting on a soapbox and proclaiming that I am the one doesn't understand the complexity. But hey, let's throw something vague in there about "modern communication" to make it sound like you've actually put some thought into this issue. Right?
    "We grow up thinking that beliefs are something to be proud of, but they're really nothing but opinions one refuses to reconsider. Beliefs are easy. The stronger your beliefs are, the less open you are to growth and wisdom, because "strength of belief" is only the intensity with which you resist questioning yourself. As soon as you are proud of a belief, as soon as you think it adds something to who you are, then you've made it a part of your ego."

  5. #85
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    The Cooling Rods of Literacy

    Quote Originally Posted by Southern Kross View Post
    OMG, I saw it on the news. I couldn't believe it was Sydney. It was so violent and angry
    What was fascinating for me was to discover that the Islamic violence was organised on social networks, ie, it was organised electronically.

    So we had traditional tribal Islamists, entranced by the electronic media, and becoming eIslamists.

    So when we have traditional tribalism as the content of electronic tribalism, we have frenzy. And it was this frenzy we saw on the streets of Sydney the other day.

    In other words, electronic tribalism drives traditional tribalism into a frenzy.

    And the antidote to both electronic and traditional tribalism is literacy.

    So we should have a very well funded reading and writing program for Islamic adults in no go areas such as Lakemba.

    We should pay Islamists good sums of money to read and write. We should have large monetry prizes for reading and writing, with high status public awards.

    So inserting literacy into tribalism and etribalism is like inserting graphite rods into a nuclear reactor.

  6. #86
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    This is kind of interesting- not quite sure what to make of it. I did wonder how they got actors to go along with making this film (which is not exactly a thoughtful critique of Islamic violence on the world stage).

    http://journal.neilgaiman.com/2012/0...d-actress.html

  7. #87
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    This is kind of interesting- not quite sure what to make of it. I did wonder how they got actors to go along with making this film (which is not exactly a thoughtful critique of Islamic violence on the world stage).

    http://journal.neilgaiman.com/2012/0...d-actress.html
    Yeah, that's despicable. I hear he also tried to trick local Muslims into seeing the film by handing out dishonest leaflets at local mosques.

    Now, if one of the actors is killed, I do think its reasonable to bring the guy up on reckless endangerment charges.....nobody should be criminally liable for violent riots against the contents of their free speech, but he misled specific individuals into putting themselves into unknowing personal danger, which is another matter entirely.

  8. #88
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    I totally agree.

  9. #89
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    Some ENTJ love:


  10. #90

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    Salman Rushdie on the state of free speech in the world today:
    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Hollywo...ends-filmmaker
    One notable thing, is that he doesn't believe his Satanic Verses would find a publisher today.

    That movie was horrible on so many levels, but is no way an excuse for murder.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

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