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HB v. AB: Is collectivism the greater evil?

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There is much more integration (not just coherence, but mutual reinforcement and support) between modern conservatism and Marxism and postmodernism, than there is between Marxism and postmodernism.

People interested in how a leading religious (Jewish) conservative thinks can watch Dennis Prager chat with Craig Biddle. They cover some hard topics and find common ground. I hope more Objectivists g

Has anyone come up with a more precise characterization of who or what is or is not being suppressed than "rightist" or "leftist"?

13 hours ago, Eiuol said:

James Madison and Alexander Hamilton were barely religious at all.

Huh? Madison was baptized Anglican, studied Presbyterian, and started the tradition of presidents attending service at St. John's Episcopal Church (his wife was Episcopalian). He mostly kept his beliefs private while fighting for separation of church and state, but he never renounced Christianity.

While Presbyterian in youth, Hamilton was probably a deistic Christian as an adult, meaning he held to Christian ethics but didn't think God was involved in human affairs. After his famous duel, however, he notably begged a reluctant bishop for the final sacrament and died proclaiming his faith.

The thing about deists back then, they often retained much of the Christian ethics while struggling to apply reason over faith. Jefferson, for example, famously cut out all the miracles in the Gospels and used the rest of it. For this sort of thing Hamilton smeared him as an "atheist." Jefferson was one of the most deistic of the bunch and even he relied on Christian morality.

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I mean, I guess by my standards they would barely be religious. I don't doubt that they expressed some religion. But their beliefs were detached enough from anything religious that it doesn't even make sense to say that the Constitution had much of any relationship with Christianity. What we really have is republicanism based in the political ethics of ancient Rome. The gradual elimination of religion from government, and we can thank the secularization of just about everything for all the wonderful things we see around us.

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On 3/22/2021 at 10:49 PM, Eiuol said:

I mean, I guess by my standards they would barely be religious. I don't doubt that they expressed some religion. But their beliefs were detached enough from anything religious that it doesn't even make sense to say that the Constitution had much of any relationship with Christianity. What we really have is republicanism based in the political ethics of ancient Rome. The gradual elimination of religion from government, and we can thank the secularization of just about everything for all the wonderful things we see around us.

What I think has to be re-emphasized is that the believing person is not "the Faith". He/she is not even to be taken as a symbol of the faith - representative. They are individuals, each trying to reconcile something un-believable with the reality of living their daily lives. The contradiction is theirs alone (like their personal struggle between body and Soul). But don't make the error of thinking they can't be and haven't been rational, can't apply themselves, sometimes very well, to reality, in doing so.

I ask that one SEES. When I recommend looking around, it's to see the visible artifacts, things and products themselves, thought of, produced and built by people who were - and are - religious, by a huge majority. The tree in your garden was certainly planted by a religious person, that grocery item, the design of a new gear box, a bridge, the layout of a city's streets - you name it, were conceived of and/or constructed by them. And the individuals: The man who undertakes heart surgery might be wearing a yarmulke. 

So not exclusively 'looking at' the abstractions, literally seeing the concretes . And not simply pulling up historical, central figures, who lead the way often in establishing the ideas. Looking at the man-made results.

For every good conception, capitalism etc., there had to be an assimilation of it by the majority of a generation at the time. For god's sake, how few secularists-atheists were around then and now? So not just a "Rockefeller", a protagonist of capitalism, but also millions of businessmen, professionals and small traders who took up those ideas, at least implicitly, and practiced them while also attending church. That's how the industrial revolution and capitalism and a rough individualism proliferated and were handed down - not only because of the writings of the greats. Every objectively good idea had to be recognized and meet the approval of the people to survive in action.

Can Objectivists and the religious co-exist in society, is the question on hand. Yes, the single criterion being that most or all have understood to leave others' lives alone. Both personally and by means of the state. To mix with them, trade with them, befriending some, and so on, isn't a stretch from there.

Those 'periods', pre-modernism, modernism and post-modernism were not sharply delineated and simply waved into existence - hey presto! - that's an excess of philosophical rationalism; that also indicates revealed knowledge, e.g. the "True Word" by XYZ instantly caused that - which is dogmatic belief also; they came about by ideas, bad ones too, being disseminated, their value perceived, being gradually actualized and taken up - by people, individuals. All of them then, and most of whom today in the West were and are Christians.

Edited by whYNOT
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Posted (edited)
On 3/22/2021 at 4:49 PM, Doug Morris said:

What about opposing government interference in personal matters such as abortion?

Stay out of my body!

(Or else you conservatives' supposed opposition to gvt. interference is hypocritical and will be immediately compromised).

But I'm noticing a general resignation by some or many, that abortion won't go away. Not an acceptance of the practice, the idea is too abhorrent for them. But that eventually we will all be judged in after life for our sins, and them passing judgment on sinful acts here and now, or forcibly preventing them, is superfluous/hubristic.

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In the spirit of leaning toward the religious over the collectivist, Christianity and Culture in an Age of Crisis admonishes readers to build a new culture in the carcass of what is going on around them. (It was a Real Clear Religion provided link.)

Rod Dreher, senior editor at The American Conservative, is by far the most discussed author of this group, with his The Benedict Option first appearing in 2017. Dreher’s work casts a vision of Christian life in society that is less interested in steering the cultural ship than it is in fashioning a life raft to get away from the shipwreck of political and cultural liberalism. He replaces the old paradigm of “capturing the vote” with a vision of culture-building. Instead of creating a network of political influencers, Dreher opts for building a new world in the shell of the old, instructing Christians to establish classical schools, raise up families, and establish networks for Christian entrepreneurs.

A few more paragraphs down with a darker expectation set in bold :

[W]hat Christians need is not to abandon the free market, but to create parallel networks within it, to prepare for poverty and marginalization, situates the future of Christian work within the existing frame of the free market, encouraging entrepreneurial ventures and prudential engagements in opposing encroachments upon Christian values at work.

In short, some of the same things some active interests for a more rational society are suggesting, such as: establishing Montessori schools curricula, creating networks of philosophic influences.

From the Christian element too, could be added to set an example of living by ones 'beliefs' (or better yet, one's rational convictions) and, if family is a value, rearing children with such examples to be exposed to during their formative years.

Edited by dream_weaver
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The final analysis in society to me boils down to the difference between the subjective valuers and intrinsic valuers. I think nearly all here have had the taste and experiences of intrinsic values in younger life. The family. The nation. The culture. A religion. Etc.

(E.g. Encouraged by my father I once had an idealistic view of the British Empire, which faded as the Empire had already faded, eventually leaving behind some degree of objective value - it and its proponents weren't all so bad or wrong as I skeptically came to believe for a while and at times, good, I see now).

Where intrinsic values coincide with objective value, one can share common goals.

Where there are subjective values by such valuers there is nothing objective to share that I can see.  

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On 3/22/2021 at 4:51 PM, Doug Morris said:

That's true of most of the reactions I recall.  But I recall one who reacted in bad spirit and accused me of trying to shock.

What do you deduce from most Christian-conservatives accepting gracefully that you're not interested?

I think it suggests that they know you and I have choice and that it should be respected.

What I hear about from some Objectivists, is the Christians aiming for a theocracy. When and where? Those positions don't correlate, the religious can't force religious conversions on us, we can recant instantly anyway, and they know it.

Is that theocracy thing simply an alarmist myth, a chimera?

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1 hour ago, whYNOT said:

Is that theocracy thing simply an alarmist myth, a chimera?

My impression is that as far as out and out theocracy goes, most Christians don't want it, but a few do.

Of greater concern is some Christians' views on particular issues being an expression of their faith.

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In this comprehensive essay, Andrew Bernstein lands the knock out blow.

Left-Collectivism goes down.

For 1. The most imminent threat 2. The greatest evil of modern times.

(assuming you could not see and hadn't known that already)

 

https://www.capitalismmagazine.com/2020/10/leftist-supremacy-not-white-supremacy-is-the-gravest-threat-to-black-lives/

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Posted (edited)
On 3/29/2021 at 11:55 PM, Doug Morris said:

My impression is that as far as out and out theocracy goes, most Christians don't want it, but a few do.

Of greater concern is some Christians' views on particular issues being an expression of their faith.

Indeed, the push-back should begin there: "These issues are an expression of *your* faith - not mine and ours. What you do with your bodies is your moral concern, alone".

If they, the majority, have no desire and see no future to religiously convert anyone, would they want to politically 'convert' everyone?

I strongly doubt it.

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