OpinionIf USA wants to compete with totalitarian and massive governments (Russia, China) for world domination, it will end up a totalitarian and massive government itself
      – BorgClown, 2010-01-17 at 04:18:50   (51 comments)

On 2010-01-17 at 04:19:29, BorgClown wrote...
It looks like you already have a massive government, and totalitarianism is on its way. Keep up the good work, guys!
On 2010-01-17 at 10:38:54, Lee J Haywood wrote...
China is now set to overtake the US in almost everything. I was just reading over breakfast about their increase in research spending and how the amount of science China is doing is about to overtake the volume of work done in US. The western world really is in full-blown competition with China now (but not so much with Russia, I guess). I can see Europe continuing much as before, but I don't know what the reaction of the US will be if their economy struggles to keep up.
On 2010-01-18 at 01:49:21, BorgClown wrote...
So far the Chinese mind their own business, bully a few small countries and permeate all over the place. If China achieves world domination, I'd hate to see it bullying the rest of the world into their ways. Although their disregard for copyrights could be a good thing.
On 2010-01-21 at 20:29:52, DigitalBoss wrote...
The USA is already there.
On 2010-01-21 at 21:03:28, Lee J Haywood wrote...
The US wishes that it dominated the world. In reality it's losing its grip, letting its economy fail and the rest of the world catch up with its strength and technological prowess.
On 2010-01-22 at 01:33:05, DigitalBoss wrote...
Two really good things happened this week: a republican won in Mass. and gave the senate 41 votes, and the supreme court re-enforced the first amendment. The dems are just going to have to realize that US citizens do not want more government, and more regulation.
On 2010-01-22 at 01:38:40, DigitalBoss wrote...
We in the US do not wish to dominate the world, we want all countries to do well. One thing that we do wish for is that radical islamic terrorists would stop blowing up our shit and killing our people. Hey, we didn't go into afghanistan until after they blew up two of our embassies, one of our ships, and crashed two planes, killed thousands of people, and destroyed two large buildings. I say we waited too long.
On 2010-01-22 at 01:40:01, DigitalBoss wrote...
After having said that, it is a reality that someone will play a leading role on the planet, if so, why not the US?
On 2010-01-22 at 19:50:22, Lee J Haywood wrote...
The Taliban are a disease in the countries they reside in - they don't just attack the West. I see American Christianity as being as much to blame as Islamic extremism. Any two countries with opposing religions are likely to wage war upon another. Religion is itself a divisive system, yet a persistent one. http://techdirt.com/articles/20100115/1549467778.shtml
On 2010-01-23 at 04:33:49, BorgClown wrote...
Imaginary friends are for kids, say no to religion.
On 2010-01-24 at 02:58:08, DigitalBoss wrote...
What has American Christianity done that you oppose?
On 2010-01-24 at 03:00:52, DigitalBoss wrote...
"American Christianity as being as much to blame as Islamic extremism" -- please explain.
On 2010-01-24 at 10:11:40, BorgClown wrote...
Just want to contribute a link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8468981.stm "Gunsights' biblical references concern US and UK forces" Trijicon, the US-based manufacturer, was founded by a devout Christian, and says it runs to "Biblical standards".
On 2010-01-24 at 10:16:31, BorgClown wrote...
A devout Christian who runs a factory of death instruments with Biblical standards. Those must be old-testament standards, although there it said "you shall not kill". WTF???
On 2010-01-24 at 10:24:11, BorgClown wrote...
BTW, Trijicon announced it will stop engraving the biblical references in weapons. That says a lot about what comes first when religious beliefs and money conflict. To be fair, USA has bullied so many people for so long it has earned the hate it receives now, but idiocy is worldwide prevalent, it's certainly not focalized in USA. For example, many BBC news articles show the idiocy prevalent in UK too, and my own country apparently has a majority of indolent idiots too. Maybe idiocy and laziness are universal human nature.
On 2010-01-24 at 14:49:10, Lee J Haywood wrote...
I already explained - two countries with opposing religions are likely to wage war. Although the Taliban attack the US for its modernity, they clearly see its citizens as a group of Christians to be loathed. Christians for their part promote the idea that it's okay to accept something as true based on faith even when the evidence contracts them. Many religious ceremonies seem harmless, but are designed to maintain group conformism and the irrationality of faith.
On 2010-01-24 at 14:53:16, Lee J Haywood wrote...
North American Christians are well known for their intolerance, particularly in the bible belt. You try going through the bible belt and pretending to insult their beliefs and see how long you last.
On 2010-01-24 at 18:21:35, DigitalBoss wrote...
If you try going through any culture insulting their beliefs you will find trouble, even your dear Communists and Atheists. The Taliban, or Islamist extremists do not see westerners as Christians, what they see are non believers of Islam, be they Jew, Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, or atheist. Your idea of a society (or commune) is much like the religious ceremonies of which you speak, designed to maintain mediocrity, group conformity, and irrational thought. As far as Trijicon goes, I think any person, company, organization, or corporation, should be able to "brand" their products as they wish, they have to only their customers to answer. I could not care less. Seems to me to be as insignificant as a part number. Much ado over nothing.
On 2010-01-24 at 18:27:13, DigitalBoss wrote...
"North American Christians are well known for their intolerance" -- I know some Christians that are quite intolerant, yes, even some in my family. I have lived in the so called "Bible Belt" the whole of my life. However, I think that your statement on the whole is false. Just as we know all you dear Brits to have bad teeth and poor diets. I am sure that you would agree that stereotype doesn't fit what you know of your people.
On 2010-01-24 at 18:31:58, Lee J Haywood wrote...
It's not the people that are the problem though. The religion itself has intolerance and groupthink built into it, along with indoctrination. It's fine to say that there are good religious people and bad atheists, but atheists aren't driven to act a particular way by their lack of a religion. Religion has nothing to do with a belief in a god and everything to do with following a dogma, which tells those who do believe both what it is they ought to believe and how to act. Atheists do bad things for all the same reasons that theists do, except for one. Theists do bad things for the sake of, or on behalf of, their religion.
On 2010-01-25 at 03:38:37, DigitalBoss wrote...
Theists do good things on behalf of their religion also. What is your point? That is funny, I don't ever remember doing a bad thing on behalf of my religion. Can you give an example of a bad thing that a Christian would do on behalf of his/her religion?
On 2010-01-25 at 03:40:16, DigitalBoss wrote...
Can you give an example of the "intolerance and groupthink built into it"?
On 2010-01-25 at 05:31:44, BorgClown wrote...
@DigitalBoss: Please enlighten me about the right a "devout Christian" has to make death instruments. I thought the ten commandments were above anything else the Bible said. I know you will rationalize a way to have your cake and eat it too, I'm just interested in your train of thought.
On 2010-01-25 at 05:33:32, BorgClown wrote...
How about "I've never killed people, I just make the instruments by which they die"?
On 2010-01-25 at 10:32:56, Lee J Haywood wrote...
Take a look at the front page of Wikipedia - "More than 200 people die during several days of rioting between Muslims and Christians in Jos, Nigeria." Certainly you could argue that they might be fighting about their favourite football team, or their skin colour instead. But then you'd expect members of religions that profess to be peaceful and tolerant to be the last to fight each other, when the opposite is true. There's no doubt that plenty of Christians lead peaceful unassuming lives, with few opportunities for conflict. On the other hand if your local church decides it's necessary to go on the offensive against resident Muslims, are you going to join them or stand up for the other side?
On 2010-01-25 at 12:29:08, DigitalBoss wrote...
@Borg: As an American citizen, the gun maker has a right to put whatever phrases, slogans, or part numbers, on his products as he wishes. I would fight and die for his right to do so. As far as his religion and the details thereof, that is between him and his maker. I don't agree with what they were doing, but I am not one of his customers either. I think that it is contradictory, but it is not my place to judge him. As for you, if you don't like his guns, or his method of "marking them up", then don't buy them. In your obvious hatred of religion, you are making a complicated situation out of something that is very simple.
On 2010-01-25 at 12:39:28, DigitalBoss wrote...
@LeeJ: People have been fighting and dying over all kinds of issues worthy, or unworthy, since the dawn of time. What is your point? Fighting over religious differences is no different than fighting over soccer differences. Logic and reason should be applied to all things in life, even religious matters. As for your hypothetical, I would not participate. I would, in fact, call the authorities. I don't have anything against Muslims. The Muslims that I know are very kind and intelligent people. But I do have a problem with Muslim extremist terrorists. You blow-up our stuff, and kill our people, or even support, harbour, or train them, and you should die, no matter your religion. Plain as the nose on your face.
On 2010-01-25 at 23:21:40, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@BorgClown: Would you agree with the assertion that religious conflict is no different than that between fans of rival football teams?
On 2010-01-26 at 12:30:41, DigitalBoss wrote...
@Borg: As far as the Trijicon issue goes, guns are not always used to kill people. Guns are also used to defend and protect friends and family. I have some weapons, and I have them to defend myself. If you come to my door hungry, I will feed you. If you break into my home and intend to do me harm, I will shoot you. Religion, or no religion. Plain and simple.
On 2010-01-27 at 00:12:16, Lee J Haywood wrote...
There are of course a lot of things that religious people do which atheists - including football supporters - aren't motivated to do. http://www.davehitt.com/blog2/still-more-things-atheists-didnt-do/ http://www.davehitt.com/blog2/even-more-things-atheists-didnt-do/ To say that religion is just another motivation to do bad things is ignoring that religion isn't just one thing. It's a whole list of ideals which are regularly perverted, and worse still are outdated and not subject to change. Even if the majority of religious people are relatively nice, that doesn't excuse the fact that they're nice in spite of their religion and not because of it.
On 2010-01-27 at 06:37:24, BorgClown wrote...
@DigitalBoss: Ah, the old "Don't judge me, God will" escape, didn't see it coming. Well, at least the customer complained and was heard. It was not a little issue, at least not where those guns are used to kill. I suppose many Islam practitioners would find it doubly offensive to be hurt by a foreigner in your own land with a weapon marked with Biblical allusions. Now they can be killed in a politically-correct way!
On 2010-01-27 at 06:42:52, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: Fighting about religion vs fighting about sports? That's a hard question for someone like me, who doesn't fancy any of them. The only critical difference I see is that religious leaders claim telepathic knowledge about God's will, and hence infallibility, as opposed to sport stars/leaders who are subject to public judgment. It's funny how they are not that separate. Maradona, an old Argentinian soccer player, has the alias of "The hand of God" and his own funny church: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iglesia_Maradoniana
On 2010-01-27 at 11:13:36, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@BorgClown: That's the real issue - not just that the soldiers using the guns had to put up with having religious messages forced upon them, but the very idea that religion has anything to do with the war. It shouldn't have any place in the fighting, otherwise those from the US are no better than the Taliban they're attacking.
On 2010-01-27 at 13:20:32, DigitalBoss wrote...
Again, much ado over nothing. Yawn.
On 2010-01-28 at 03:54:48, BorgClown wrote...
@DigitalBoss: That's the point about religion, it's about nothing but most people take it very seriously.
On 2010-01-28 at 10:25:37, Lee J Haywood wrote...
The curse of religion infects every aspect of life, the problem being that there's no single religion that everyone can agree on so the conflicts aren't only violent! Having Christianity forced upon non-Christian (e.g. Islamic) citizens of the US and UK obviously makes no sense, yet it happens daily and is advocated by governments.
On 2010-01-28 at 14:13:40, DigitalBoss wrote...
@Borg: I think your statement would be more accurate if read "but SOME people take it very seriously". Just as some people take their football, or politics, very seriously, not most. @LeeJ: I think that religion is hardly a curse. I think that in many cases religion can be a blessing. If you are trying to say that the violence of our 'war on terror' is because of religion, I think that you are WAY off base. We just want the goons to quit blowing-up our stuff and killing our citizens (many of whom are Muslim, by the way). What is forced on Muslims in the US? Can you be more specific?
On 2010-01-28 at 23:35:43, Lee J Haywood wrote...
Religion is forced on everyone in the US, not just the Muslims (they were just an example). There are plenty of stories of Christian nonsense appearing in government buildings, as well as messages being added to the presidential oath and banknotes. Similarly in the UK, schools are still required to have prayers at assembly and members of the government are likely to be religious. As for your so-called 'war' on terrorism, terrorism does need to be dealt with but it's a tiny threat compared to, oh, pretty much everything. Your chance of actually having terrorism affect your life directly is vanishingly small.
On 2010-01-29 at 05:03:56, BorgClown wrote...
@DigitalBoss: I should have phrased it as "most religious people take it very seriously". Not some, but most. They will fight back for their right to have imaginary friends, and their right to force them on their children. And even on other's children.
On 2010-01-29 at 05:08:28, BorgClown wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: Just as gay matrimonies became legal in Mexico, there's a Christian faction doing what it can to abolish that law. They pretext it's a underthought law, but the reality is that they see homosexuality as abhorrent because of their religious affiliation. A funny related case is the attempts to make polygamy illegal in USA. Polygamy is a Christian dogma, and there are certain religions who allow polygamy. As USA allows freedom of religion, the polygamy issue should have never come to light.
On 2010-01-29 at 14:02:32, DigitalBoss wrote...
Marriage started as a religious institution. Governments took it over because that is what governments do, take shit over. If you do not believe in religion, why do you care if people are married or not? If it comes down to visitation in the hospital or power of attorney, or something like that, it seems like a civil union would suffice. I am all for civil unions. Government should not take over something like that and then bastardize it.
On 2010-01-29 at 14:13:11, DigitalBoss wrote...
The US of America was founded on principles of individual freedom. The right to freely practice religion of choice being a big part. The US is however mainly Christian, so many of our customs and much of our culture is influenced by Christianity. There are other influences sure, but if you deal with the US, or move to the US, you might as well realize that and get over it. Your beliefs, and your religion may not be completely accommodated, but will be accepted.
On 2010-01-29 at 16:02:20, Lee J Haywood wrote...
Marriage, in the general sense of a ceremony acknowledging the joining a man and a woman, is universal and has nothing whatsoever to do with religion, never mind Christianity. It happens to be the case that in western countries there is a specific ceremony performed by churches, but it is not and has never been limited to Christianity - you just happen to be used to the most common practice in your country.
On 2010-01-29 at 16:02:40, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@BorgClown: Polygamy may well be advocated or denounced by certain religions but ultimately its acceptance has to be one by society, not religious institutions. If it's offensive to the majority of people in a country then the law is going to reflect that rejection. As society progresses it may be that religions have to catch up (don't they always?) but perhaps polygamy will always be rejected by the majority even though same-sex marriage is likely to become universally accepted in the future.
On 2010-01-30 at 00:45:23, DigitalBoss wrote...
I never said marriage was limited to Christianity, I said marriage is a religious institution. No matter it Pagan, or some Brazilian indigenous tribe, if you asked the people involved, they would say that the act of joining a man and a woman together was part of their religious practice, and I would dare to say that you would never find an instance of such people joining a man and a man.
On 2010-01-30 at 04:01:26, BorgClown wrote...
We're forgetting that mating is a natural occurrence not limited to humans. I agree that religion took control of it, and hence of the populace, and later governments. Which is not that surprising considering that religions tend to become governments on their own, that comes with controlling the masses.
On 2010-01-31 at 08:47:34, DigitalBoss wrote...
We haven't forgotten anything, we are not talking about mating, we are talking about marriage, two completely different things (mating is when you are getting some, marriage is when you are not). I would dare say that animals don't have such ritual ceremony, maybe some do, but if they do, they certainly would not celebrate, and institutionalize, the pairing of two males.
On 2010-01-31 at 09:57:46, Lee J Haywood wrote...
Tribal rituals are not 'institutionalised religions', they're just ceremonies. They may well be the basis of religions, but they're not being religious - that's forcing your viewpoint onto them. Indeed, your viewpoint wouldn't accept same-sex marriage but I could imagine that if a tribal group accepted such a bond between a pair of individuals then it'd be straightforward for them to adapt the joining ritual. It isn't as simple for a full-blown religion like Christianity with thousands of years of bigotry to overcome.
On 2010-01-31 at 17:53:15, DigitalBoss wrote...
In your obvious hatred of Christianity, you have proven yourself to be a bigot.
On 2010-01-31 at 18:13:19, Lee J Haywood wrote...
You're confusing a dislike of Christianity (actually religion generally) with a dislike of Christians. It's not the people I dislike, nor even their wish to be Christians.
On 2010-02-01 at 11:45:43, Thelevellers wrote...
Wow. While this has gone off topic, it is still as interesting a debate as I was hoping for - thank-you! :)