Archive for January, 2010



Justice Stevens bemoans changed court – USATODAY.com: “WASHINGTON — When liberal Justice John Paul Stevens dissented Thursday as the Supreme Court permitted new corporate spending in elections, he invoked the names of influential and long-gone justices.
He began with retired Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, with whom he had worked on a 2003 case the majority was partially overruling. He referred to the late Justice Thurgood Marshall’s warning in a 1990 case, also overturned, about how corporate money can distort political debate. Stevens then cited the late Justice Byron White about the importance of deferring to Congress, which had passed the law the majority discarded Thursday.”

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Ezra Klein – Will bloggers profit if newspapers charge?: “A blogger with a few subscriptions can distill the information from the newspapers that readers don’t have subscriptions to. Bloggers move from providing more efficient information to offering access to information. A black market for news, in a sense.”


More than one in four Americans believe religion “outdated”

Overall, this is good news, as it indicates that, rather than blindly believing in unfounded concepts which have created an often spectacular amount of divisiveness and horror, people are beginning to develop the courage and insight to look more closely and with greater scientific thinking into humankind’s most important issues.
Nevertheless, I hope by “outdated” the majority of these individuals are not suggesting that we simply throw out all religion, ignore its history and ban it from the future. I completely disagree with such a notion, which would define tyranny and fascism, if those words have any meaning at all. As a mythicist and scholar of comparative religion and mythology, having studied these fascinating subjects for decades, I have absolutely no interest in banning religion or ignoring its massive, imaginative, creative and colorful past extending back many thousands of years.
Indeed, I love studying these subjects above all others, and my main goal is to spread the appreciation for deserving religious ideation dating back millennia, while attempting to stem the fanaticism and megalomania that create endless atrocity. It’s really not that difficult, but we need to wake up, as it seems a significant portion of people are doing today. Ironically, what we are bringing forth from our collective past is really the “updating” that religion so desperately needs in the first place!
29% of Americans say religion ‘out of date’
A Gallup poll of Americans’ attitudes towards religion released on Christmas Eve found significant recent increases in those responding either that they have no religious preference, that religion is not very important in their lives, or that they believe religion “is largely old-fashioned or out of date.”Only 78% of Americans now identify as Christian, while 22% describe their religious preference as either “other” or “none.”Most of these changes have occurred since 2000 and represent the first significant shift since a sharp decline in religious adherence during the 1970s. Over the last nine years, the number with no religious preference has grown from a level of around 8% to 13%. The number for whom religion is not very important has climbed from just over 10% to 19%. And the number who believe religion is out of date and has no answers for today’s problems has jumped from slightly more than 20% to 29%.These changes do not appear to have affected the majority of Americans who still consider religion “very important” in their own lives. That figure remains at 56% — roughly the same as for the last 35 years — while 57% still say religion has answers to most of the world’s problems.The biggest difference is that in the late 1990s, up to 68% of Americans though religion had answers to the world’s problems — even though only about 60% said religion was personally very important to them. It seems as though over the last ten years a significant number may have gone from believing that religion is a positive factor in the world, even if they’re not particularly religious themselves, to seeing religion in a far more skeptical or even negative light….


Not all atheists have revealed their atheism to their friends and neighbors. Religious theism is so widespread, and distrust of atheists so prevalent, that many people can’t tell the full truth even to those closest to them out of fear of ostracism and discrimination. This is a serious indictment against the alleged morality of religion in America today, but it also points to an opportunity: if more atheists did come out of the closet, it might lead to a change in attitudes.

http://atheism.about.com/od/atheistactivism/p/ComeOutFriends.htm?nl=1


Fox News: Keeping the faith Media Matters for America

The collected spiritual teachings of the world’s various deities, messiahs, prophets, monks, yogis, gurus, and shamans are so deeply ingrained in human culture and consciousness that they essentially tell the history of mankind. Their cosmological and philosophical differences have proved to be stubbornly intractable and provided the impetus for many of humanity’s more brutal conflicts. The greatest minds of the ancient, medieval, and modern worlds have devoted entire lifetimes delving into the deepest questions that face mankind.
But for Fox News, religion is easy: Christianity is right and good and must be defended from its relentless persecutors, and other faiths are dangerous, inadequate, or funny.


Boxes & Labels
Independent, I am

Do not box or label me
Independent, I am
Think anew is the task

To believe is lesson learned, to think anew is lesson earned
Christian, Atheist, Protestant, Agnostic, Catholic & Baptist

Do not box or label me
Independent, I am
Think anew is the task

To believe is lesson learned, to think anew is lesson earned
Democrat, Conservative, Republican, Liberal, Moderate & Activist

Do not box or label me
Independent, I am
Think anew is the task

Think anew is the Struggle
Think anew is the Shock
Think anew is the Loss
Think anew is the Gain
Think anew is the Freedom

Do not box or label me
Independent, I am
Think anew is the task

The Struggle I behold
The Shock I behold
The Loss I behold
The Gain I behold
The Freedom I behold

Do not box or label me
Independent, I am
Think anew is the task

Independence, Individualism, Self-Rule, Liberty & Freedom is my Reward
Do not box or label me
Think anew is the task I deem merit

To believe is lesson learned, to think anew is lesson earned
Christian, Atheist, Protestant, Agnostic, Catholic & Baptist
To believe is lesson learned, to think anew is lesson earned
Democrat, Conservative, Republican, Liberal, Moderate & Activist

Do not box or label me
Independent, I am
Think anew is the task

~Susanthur

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