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View Diary: Obama Wins With Catholic Vote (55 comments)

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  •  Why are you bringing attention to this? (0+ / 0-)

    IMHO this would best be something to sweep under the proverbial rug.

    •  Please get off your high horse. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joedemocrat

      I'm Catholic.  You're being offensive.  

      Is there any room for Obama moderates around here?

      by Bagger on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 07:33:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, what is offensive to me is the (0+ / 0-)

        hundreds of thousands of kids you guys have sexually molested and then covered up.

        Be that a high horse or whatever, it's totally fucked up to me that you continue to get away with it.

        •  I hope you're equally harsh on all Americans (5+ / 0-)

          for our war crimes in Iraq. The use of drones in Pakistan and Yemen (and who knows where else). Our massive effect on global warming. And on and on. Or, perhaps, you can realize that the good and the bad exist in the same group and the struggles of the good can be acknowledged as they work towards a better future? Or not. Your choice.

          Attention rich bastards, this is real important,
          I thought you might want to know
          That $5,000 suits don't hide your 5¢ souls.

          by ontheleftcoast on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 07:57:41 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  How do you stop being American and (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Knockbally

            end all that?  Really, tell me how?

            By contrast, it is not that difficult to stop enabling the abuses of the Roman Catholic Church . ..  after all, membership is entirely voluntary (quite unlike paying taxes to support the US MIC).

            •  Being American is voluntary (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Timaeus, pHunbalanced, Knockbally

              Pack your bags and move. Or work to make America better. But remember, it's often easier to make change from the inside.

              The ball's back in your court.

              To me progress is not so much a goal as it is a process and I believe it will not follow a straight course. Remember, the drops of water that form the river may not take the shortest path but they will still reach the ocean.

              by ontheleftcoast on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 09:03:09 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Move where? (0+ / 0-)

                Seriously, not that many countries want Americans.

                I don't really know why you are being deliberately obtuse on this issue, but it is quite frankly difficult to stop being American as compared to stop being a child abuse enabling religious nutcase.

                •  Wrong. (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Timaeus, pHunbalanced, Knockbally

                  When you are born and raised in a tradition it is very difficult to leave it behind. Leaving behind your nationality is no less difficult than leaving behind your culture and that includes your religious beliefs.

                  Look, insult all Catholics as much as you want. That is your right as an American. But I get the sense that it's not me being obtuse that's bothering you on this rather it's the uncomfortable feeling you have that I'm right about it.

                  To me progress is not so much a goal as it is a process and I believe it will not follow a straight course. Remember, the drops of water that form the river may not take the shortest path but they will still reach the ocean.

                  by ontheleftcoast on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 09:19:37 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

    •  Hey Roadbed Guy, we've got to stop meeting like (6+ / 0-)

      this.  We need to distinguish between the  
      the top-down hierarchical institutional governing body,which is pushing a socially conservative agenda aligned with the right-wing, and a vast numbers of Catholic people and voters inspired by the social justice traditions of many Catholic communities,  which also happen to be an important and large constituency of the Democratic Party and people of our country.

      When critics of the terrible atrocities of the pedophiliac priests fail to make these distinctions and issue blanket castigations of Catholicism and all Catholics as the exclusive cause and responsible parties in pedophilia scandals, or the Holy Wars and Crusades starting a thousand years ago which have no doubt contributed to current tensions in Islamic areas, these critics harm progress towards resolution, as well our Democratic coalition, secular humanism, atheism, and the social fabric of America and the world.

      If we used similarly flawed  logic we could indict all Americans for collective responsibility for Bush Administration war crimes, moral responsibility for civilian deaths in drone strikes, all Moslems responsibly for violent Jihad, all followers of Shinto for atrocity committed by the Japanese in the rape of Nanking, all Jews responsible for injustices to Palestinians, and all Palestinians responsible for terrorists rocket attacks on Israeli border areas, and all modern global citizens responsible for excess consumerism and energy use causing carbon emissions potentially destroying life on earth.  

      And, before you jump in and say this is exactly right, Roadbed Guy and this is why only you and modern "scientifically" oriented supporters of nuclear power are morally pure, let me remind you that we can easily find a large group who would indict you for all future instances of totalitarian police state necessary to keep vast quantities of radioactive wastes out of the hands of terrorist who wish to use existing power plant waste sites vast dirty bombs with drone missal strikes.

      This kind of mind set will infinite perpetrate hostilities, bigotry, prejudice, and side-effect injustices forever, which is one reason the Geneva Conventions makes collective punishment illegal.

      But, this does not mean that all human as part of our global social system do not have a voluntary opportunity to assume collective moral responsibility for all of our collective moral short-comings in an abstract way, in the sense that this perspective may be a first step towards enabling us to transcend them and work together towards building better societies. To me, this is essence of the spirit of secular or scientific humanism - but which has a pre-requisite of granting an entry level of respect to all people and their private religious and spiritual beliefs, ethnicities, and a vast number of other "original sins."    

      I see posts such as this as important contributions to improved collective understanding and effectiveness in developing more sophisticated collective perspectives in our  Party and as people of our country which should also include the essence of a secular Rosetta stone that helps enable a pluralistic peoples to engage more deeply in issues involving values and also "collective responsibility" for our institutional failures and short-comings against aspirational goals.

      To make this more specific, many Catholics including Joe Biden distinguish the social justice mission of Catholicism from the socially conservative agenda of the hierarchy represented by the Vatican and councils of Bishops, who at a very practical level competed for the hearts and minds of Catholic voters who each had to decide whether to vote for Democrats and social justice, or follow the Vatican and vote for the socially conservative anti-abortion and "family values" agenda.

      This excellent post by Timaeus, calls our attention to a job well done by our many Catholic Democrats like Joe Biden who helped keep this towards a 50-50 split.

      Catholic voters displayed a more sophisticated political perspective in being able to tease out these subtle nuances and we should celebrate, elevate, and include their success with ours as fellow respected Democrats.

      Especially, as we are probably about to grabble with our own complex ethical ambiguities as we engage in a "grand compromise" with Republicans to avoid the largely self-made crisis of the "fiscal cliff" but will possible result in Democrats "betraying" Social Security recipients, Government Pensioners, and  Medicare recipients by adopting much of the Simpson-Bowles provisions including these pathetic and dodgy modified cost-of-living  adjustments - which many will consider to also be an atrocity.

      But, will we then denounce all Democrats as just as guilty as all Catholics, and everyone else, for all atrocities committed in our names by our institutions in the inherently humbling engagement with our political system and reality?

      No! I say, let's instead move in the direction of learning, nuance, and subtle distinctions where we tease out how we get more of the good things and less of the bad things out of ourselves and our social groups including religions. And, where we redefine moral responsibility as an empowering opportunity to make the world better, rather than as a convenient black indictment we pull out to automatically blame groups of others for more complex moral failings of human systems.  

      Otherwise, you might risk giving Atheism a bad name and being held morally accountable for single handedly undermining the possibility of cooperation and progress in pluralistic democracies, and others may incorrectly put you in the same indictment box along side pedophiles, war criminals, Republican bigots, and other near-do-wells.  And, this wouldn't be fair, even though it might resonate on certain humorously poignant comic ironies, some might enjoy.  (But, then I would denounce them,and myself with equal fervor, and jump into the indictment box with you.)    

      So Timeaus is moving us in the right direction to notice and celebrate that we owe much gratitude to those Catholics who had the courage and moral sophistication to defy the religious orders of their church hierarchy and use their noble feelings and traditions of their religions social justice mission to chose to vote for Democrats.  We probably could not have won this election without them, and need to include and respect them as a vital part of the Democratic coalition, and also I would hope a larger coalition of secular and non-secular humanists who are trying to find ways to transcend divisions to work together to help create a better world.

      So, in the spirit of brevity, let me say no we should not sweep this under the carpet, but sweep it to the middle of the floor and reveal in it, roll around in it like a cat marking our primary playground.

      And, as alway, Roadbed guy, you know I mean this in the nicest possible way, and as a fellow Democratically, humanist, oriented scientist.  

      The means is the ends in the process of becoming. - Mahatma Gandhi

      by HoundDog on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 08:45:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes we could . . . (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HoundDog, Knockbally
        If we used similarly flawed  logic we could indict all Americans for collective responsibility for Bush Administration war crimes, moral responsibility for civilian deaths in drone strikes, all Moslems responsibly for violent Jihad, all followers of Shinto for atrocity committed by the Japanese in the rape of Nanking, all Jews responsible for injustices to Palestinians, and all Palestinians responsible for terrorists rocket attacks on Israeli border areas, and all modern global citizens responsible for excess consumerism and energy use causing carbon emissions potentially destroying life on earth.
        And that would be fair enough.

        But puzzle me this - as I pointed out above "how do you stop being an American?"  - there is NO trivial answer as compared to how one can stop enabling the child abusing Catholic Church . . .  IOW, one can pretty much instantly decide to no longer be part and parcel of the latter.

        •  Thanks for reading and responding Roadbed Guy (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Timaeus, Roadbed Guy, Knockbally

          I was afraid you might misinterpret my excessively long speech as a snark, just because I put in some self-satirical comic relief for my own, (and your benefit.)

          I knew you were going to like this paragraph, and am so pleased you quoted it, as I deliberately put it in to illustrate I do understand elements of your perspective better than you might think.

          One thing I appreciate about you is you exceptionally long attention span.  And, attention to detail.

          Well, I guess I should say two things I appreciate are you long attention span, and attention to detail, and your intelligence.  ....

          Among your many admirable qualities are attention span, attention to detail and intelligence, which helps soften the your sometimes edgy and provocative cynicism.  (So much for this Monty Python allusion to break the ice.)

          To respond to you excellent point I need to introduce a more complicated mathematical paradigm, I know you must be familiar with as a scientist.

          The choice you identify of being able to renounce our religions but not our nationality implies that this choice is a binary variable and our only possible response to moral failings by the leaders of these groups, and in regard to collective guilt, moral responsibility, and punishment.  

          But, this is a vast oversimplification of several  variables which include the "relative degree of identification with the group (Catholicism or being an American), the perceived relative legitimacy of the group compared to others you might be able to participate in instead, and also the degree of dedication or alignment with such a group for other goals. And, also and unfortunate oversimplification of the longer-term and wider system issues involved in remaining part of a group that engages in, enables, or even allows immoral and criminal behavior.  

          You suggest we should hold Catholics moral responsible for their continued participation in a group  because some of their leadership engaged in pedophilia and many of the top most leaders deliberately covered it up, allowing other children to be molested, and "imply" they could have, and "should have" "easily" left  their church, and when they do not we are correct in holding them to be morally responsible for enabling a criminal organization so are therefore equally morally culpable.

          But, that we should not hold all American equally responsible for potential war crimes committed in our names under the Bush Administration because it would be "inconvenient" for us to move?  Really?  

          First of all, you err in your assessment that it would easier for some deeply religious people to give up their Church and Faith than to move and seek asylum to another country.

          But, what is more surprising, is that you would suggest collective guilt and punishment is legitimate but "inconvenience" in quitting the system should be an excuse that would let folks off the hook.  Those trapped in criminal gangs face much worse "inconvenience" than a rich fellow like you would seeking asylum in another country.

          But, when we look at the bigger picture of the whole causal network of other system variables, and also expand our time frame into a dynamic framework over time we discover that these choices are not just binary "on and off" switches but continuous variables of an infinite number of graduations.

          I'll grant that the amount of work and inconvenience" are important but we need to introduce more variable and a longer time frame -- shall we say "total switching" cost to "move in the direction" of a cost/benefit dynamic  mathematical analysis (of the sort I've tried to use to convert you away from nuclear power to wiser more efficient sustainable energy choices. ) ( Mathematically these two problems may be surprisingly  isomorphic in many ways)

          All Catholics, and Americans, supporters of nuclear power,  and more generally members of groups they were brought up into systems that turn out to have moral side effects not to their liking have many more options than just up and leaving.

          Some choose to remain members to see if they can be a positive force in helping the groups recognize and transcend their pathological components.

          "Membership" in these groups is not simply an either our choice. Many Catholics and Americans identify to large extents with what they perceive to be positive elements of their group, its behavior, and moral consequences, but dis-identify with negative, immoral, and criminal behavior done by errant members in the name of the group.

          One reason I did not leave and renounce my American citizenship with former President Bush violated Geneva Convention, international law, and the American Constitution by falsifying data to lead us into the war in Iraq is that I did not and do not accept the equality of George Bush = America.  

          I remained an American, passionately patriotic and dedicated to our Constitution and the rule of law, and energetically denounced Bush, Cheney, and the yet- to-be indicted co-conspirators for trying to hijack our Country and our redefine our Constitution and identify as Americans with their disgusting and aberrant behavior which harmed many more children with death than all the pedophile priests combined.  (See several hundred posts here in my archives from that time period.)

          I do not excuse myself from collective guilt if the rest of the world could bypass our total domination of the world courts to indict us for war crimes, -- I just don't think realistically that is going to happen, or that may be the most constructive way to maximize collective learning to improve the future behavior for humanity.  But, I'm open minded.  I actually think hearing in the World Court would be better than not, but that's a different topic.

          If we take our excess use of carbon based fuels which is having a catastrophic impact on our atmosphere and the possibly even human, and other life-forms on earth as another example of the same principles we see it not even as much "moral and ethical" issues as much as survival issues.

          For this purpose, and for clarity, and brevity, I oversimplify and use the same cost/benefit type of analysis where survival is just one component of "utility" or "goodness" and collapse of the atmosphere and ecosystems, and vast numbers of human deaths, as a "cost" - a very negative cost.

          But, I suspect I know you well enough that if someone responded to you they should be excused from having to reduce  excess use of carbon based fuels because they have no other planet to go to you would quickly reject this by saying "no, you have another choice which is to stop burning highly carbon emitting coal."  

          In fact do you not use this exact argument to suggest "simple-minded environmentalists" are hypocritical  not to support nuclear power?  I would argue that nuclear power has such cost problems with the generation of problematic nuclear waste which not only kills the cost/benefit ratios when compared to renewables, but also create enormous national security "external cost"  of terrorism, or even just the extremely costly measures we must go through to avoid them including loss of civil liberties as one of costs.

          But, I bring this up only to show that your own espoused belief system, to the extent I am rendering it accurately quickly demolishes the "Catholics are different from American with regard to moral responsibility because they can give up their religion, but we can't conveniently move logic."  

          I hope you will quickly renounce this as an over sight or mis-step, so we can move onto looking at a more valid moral-ethical-cost/benefit paradigm.    

          The means is the ends in the process of becoming. - Mahatma Gandhi

          by HoundDog on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 10:33:33 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I guess we just fundamentally disagree (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Knockbally

            on this - personally I was raised in a batshit crazy religion and left when I was old enough to get out of under my parent's sway.

            So it CAN be done.   Again, very easily, you just freakin' do it.

            Unlike leaving the country.  There is NO practical way for vast numbers of people to simply pack up and leave no matter how much you care to equate the two scenarios.

            •  You guys (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Roadbed Guy, Timaeus

              I am so impressed with the level of your discourse it's almost making me misty.  Seriously.

              You disagree with each other, as Roadbed Guy says, in fundamental ways, but you are civil, listen to each other, respond to each other, and don't resort to attacks.  

              As a believer and what I sometimes think of as a "half-assed Catholic", I struggle with my faith.  I have not found it easy just to leave the church, even though I rarely go to Mass.  It's such a part of my upbringing, my history, and even my ethnicity (Irish) that I think I'll always, at some level, consider myself Catholic.

              I hate what the hierarchy has done covering up the ruination of young lives; but many of the humans within this institution constantly amaze me with their compassion and concern for justice.

              I guess, ultimately, I would love to see discussions among people of all faiths or no faith with the kind of respect I've seen above.  Even if as progressives we can't agree about religion or faith, perhaps we can find those important areas where our passions intersect, and work together there.

              The last word in ignorance is the man who says of an animal or plant: 'What good is it?” - Aldo Leopold

              by Knockbally on Fri Nov 09, 2012 at 06:15:37 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Guess you caught me on a good day . . .. (0+ / 0-)

                other days I would have been this close to ripping your eyes out like a rabid raccoon might do . . .

                •  Oh, dear. (0+ / 0-)

                  Not my eyes.  My (relatively) beautiful eyes!

                  I'm glad I caught you on a good day, too!

                  The last word in ignorance is the man who says of an animal or plant: 'What good is it?” - Aldo Leopold

                  by Knockbally on Fri Nov 09, 2012 at 08:03:05 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

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