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Thread: Is Obama Really Going to Win?

  1. #151
    Senior Member Array cafe's Avatar
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    But there is redistribution of wealth going on. The rich/poor divide in this country is growing.

    I do not think you can really make a scriptural case for God having a problem with the involuntary redistribution of wealth benefiting the poor. Tithes are not a suggestion in a theocracy and a portion of those tithes were commanded to go to the poor. Farmers were forbidden from going over their fields a second time or from harvesting corners of their fields etc in order to allow for the poor to take what was left.
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  2. #152
    Oberon
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    Quote Originally Posted by cafe View Post
    I do not think you can really make a scriptural case for God having a problem with the involuntary redistribution of wealth benefiting the poor.
    No, and I wouldn't try. However, I can make a pretty good historical case for wealth-redistribution projects ending badly.

  3. #153
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    Quote Originally Posted by oberon View Post
    I'm all for helping the needy, but wealth redistribution (implicitly at gunpoint) for the purpose of operating a welfare system is not the same as Christian charity. It comes from a different impulse and operates by way of a different dynamic. There's a big ethical difference between giving your own money to the poor and giving somebody else's money to the poor.
    hmmm. So are there other reliable methods of dealing with economic inequity and dealing with issues like poverty, homelessness, etc., that are not just theoretical/idealistic but actually alleviate the issue?

    Politically conservative people as a group give more to charity than the politically liberal.
    I'm wondering how much of this is based on "charity" that is given on an ideological basis rather than on pure altruism with no strings attached.

    One of my biggest gripes is that Christian "charity" usually seems to more just be a vehicle for promoting a particular set of religious values, rather than mere altruism (aka The "Let's help people so we can win them to Jesus" Syndrome). It's a subtle trap to fall into but a dangerous one.
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  4. #154
    Senior Member Array Lateralus's Avatar
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    Altruism does not exist.
    "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. #155
    Oberon
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    hmmm. So are there other reliable methods of dealing with economic inequity and dealing with issues like poverty, homelessness, etc., that are not just theoretical/idealistic but actually alleviate the issue?
    Yes, there are. A quick look in your phone book will yield you a half-dozen phone numbers for local food banks and homeless shelters, some of them operated by churches or parachurch organizations. In Rocky Mount, the closest shelter to my house is operated by United Community Ministries. They take donations of money, food, and time. Many of the churches in town support UCM financially, also.

    My liberal neighbor hates having the shelter nearby because it draws homeless people to the neighborhood and brings down his property values.

  6. #156
    Oberon
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    One of my biggest gripes is that Christian "charity" usually seems to more just be a vehicle for promoting a particular set of religious values, rather than mere altruism (aka The "Let's help people so we can win them to Jesus" Syndrome). It's a subtle trap to fall into but a dangerous one.
    ...so the food value of a bag of groceries is somehow negated if it also contains a tract?

    Having moved in Christian circles, you're probably aware that the number of folks who really want to do face-to-face evangelism is about as small as the number of folks who really want to volunteer at homeless shelters. Neither task is particularly pleasant.

  7. #157
    He pronks, too! Array Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    As a socialist who has been poor for most of his life (only conveniently middle-class right now), and anti-consumerist, I'm finding Oberon's depiction of the typical leftist to be pretty absurd.

    EDIT: I think it's worth pointing out that a tie between religion and right-wing philosophy is a very American/Canadian thing. In Latin America, central and western Europe, and most of the Muslim world, religious people are often associated with socialist ideals (though Europe has seemed to have changed the most in that regard).
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  8. #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    One of my biggest gripes is that Christian "charity" usually seems to more just be a vehicle for promoting a particular set of religious values, rather than mere altruism (aka The "Let's help people so we can win them to Jesus" Syndrome). It's a subtle trap to fall into but a dangerous one.
    That's false. Religious people are more likely to donate both time and effort to charity, faith-based or not.
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  9. #159
    Oberon
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    ...I'm finding Oberon's depiction of the typical leftist to be pretty absurd.
    Point out where I've depicted a "typical leftist," and I'll consider your argument.

  10. #160
    unscannable Array Tigerlily's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ajblaise View Post
    Just though I'd post this. Looks like McCain likes Obama maybe a little too much.

    Thanks for posting that.

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