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An honest utterance

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  • We haven't had strategies for decades, why start now? The only difference is this time we're lobbing missiles first, before committing boots to the ground. Last time we went on an adventure in Iraq we figured we could Han Solo the mission as we went along, and we saw how well that turned out. At least so far we haven't sent any ground troops to die.
    • Then there is your conspiracy theory angle [pjmedia.com]:

      The actual strategy is detente first, and then a full alliance with Iran throughout the Middle East and North Africa. It has been on display since before the beginning of the Obama administration. During his first presidential campaign in 2008, Mr. Obama used a secret back channel to Tehran to assure the mullahs that he was a friend of the Islamic Republic, and that they would be very happy with his policies. The secret channel was Ambassador William G. Miller, who served in Iran during the shah's rule, as chief of staff for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and as ambassador to Ukraine. Ambassador Miller has confirmed to me his conversations with Iranian leaders during the 2008 campaign.

      In a way, it would be a relief if true; the knowledge that there is at least some rationale to this spinelessness, however disgusting, would have a shred of merit.

      • Wow, cool! You exposed Obama's "October Surprise"? Sharp as a tack you are...

        Oh, and the "spinelessness" thing. Is that supposed to evoke a response other than, "what?" Why don't you try to digest your mass media garbage before regurgitating it all over the carpet?

        And here again, your dear friend in the white house is indeed following the footsteps of his predecessors (including the nameless one you idolize the most), so where's the beef? You're chasing ghosts.

        So, what's up? You ginning for war? AGAIN?? I m

        • Wow, if you were any more creative in ascribing incorrect motives to me, your handle would be d_r.
          I haven't the slightest interest in MOAR WAR. That position, however, does not preclude war having interest in me.
          • I haven't the slightest interest in MOAR WAR.

            Not until your faction is "in charge"* no. In the meantime, you merely being contrary. You just don't like the guy pushing the buttons. You are making a fashion statement.

            * Actually if you bother to look behind the set, you'll find they always have been. "They", too, never left.

            • You just don't like the guy pushing the buttons. You are making a fashion statement.

              Really. Thanks. If BHO wants my support, a coherent strategy would be welcome. But I understand you're trolling. Bravo.

              • ...a coherent strategy...

                So funny... You really think things are so chaotic in the boardrooms?

                • You really think that anyone below the level of the Almighty actually controls the course of history with any precision?
                  • Nice try, but you're complaining about one particular person, who is doing nothing different than any of the others. Personality, man. Get over it.

                    • Wait, so you're arguing that any one person actually controls the course of history? I suppose you'd have to, given that conspiracies just don't scale.
                      I, for one, think that, despite whatever local bits of order to which you can point, history is mostly a chaotic system, at least as seen from the meatware perspective.
                    • Nope, you haven't said any of that. Your focus, more like obsession, is on the one person, regardless of his ability to control anything. You are on a bandwagon. And you'll jump off just as soon as your "party" #ReoccupiesResoluteDesk (or however you put it). You are fooling no one except yourself.

                    • This is masterful. You can control what I'm saying, and then beat me up for disagreeing with you. I am become your strawman.
                    • You're not disagreeing with me. You haven't heard a word I've said. And I certainly am not controlling what you say. Your pjmedia propaganda rag is doing that. You parrot them word for word

                    • Well, thanks for clearing up where all these strings go, then. What's clear is that nothing stated in the conservative blogosphere could possibly true, since you've negated it all in one of your handwaves. Yuda man.
              • You just don't like the guy pushing the buttons. You are making a fashion statement.

                Really. Thanks. If BHO wants my support, a coherent strategy would be welcome.

                One, why is a "coherent strategy" - or any strategy really - required only when the man at 1600 Pennsylvania is not of your own party?

                And two, why are you pretending that this would somehow change your feelings regarding the POTUS?

                • "[your] own party". Think through the implications of that, please. And also, understand that I laugh at your every attempt to change the topic off of the disaster that is OUR President.
                  • "[your] own party". Think through the implications of that, please.

                    I love how you, again, discarded the overwhelming majority of the text of my comment in favor of your favorite snippet. Nonetheless, as much as you try to assign me to a given party - or to claim that Obama is somehow secretly a part of some grand political movement / conspiracy that is counter to everything he has done to date as president - you are at least equally as much a member of the GOP. You can pretend that the Tea Party is somehow distinct from them but we all know how that song will go.

                    And also, understand that I laugh at your every attempt to change the topic off of the disaster that is OUR President.

                    i wasn

                    • No, really: if it was MY OWN PARTY, it would be handle along substantially different lines, trust me.
                    • No, really: if it was MY OWN PARTY, it would be handle along substantially different lines, trust me.

                      So why do you get that privilege but I do not? You insist that I am part of an established party while demanding that I view you otherwise.

                    • Wait: you get to accuse me of having my own party, accuse me of having privilege, then accuse me of insisting that you are a member of some established party? I don't remember saying you were the DNC chair, for all your utterances do rival those of Wasserman-Schultz for incoherence.
                      If you want an accusation, I think you're a defender of statism.
                    • you get to accuse me of having my own party

                      I do not recall ever having accused you of having your own party. I merely stated that you are very much a proud member of a party. The statement of "your party" does not indicate ownership, but rather membership.

                      accuse me of having privilege

                      What privilege are you accusing me of accusing you of having?

                      then accuse me of insisting that you are a member of some established party

                      You regularly accuse me of being a member of an established party. I could provide cases of you doing so but you won't read them.

                      I don't remember saying you were the DNC chair

                      I never accused you of accusing me of having any power within a party, though you have in that wonderf

                    • The statement of "your party" does not indicate ownership, but rather membership.

                      There is ambiguity here, yes.

                      You regularly accuse me of being a member of an established party.

                      Statism is really more of a disease than a party.

                    • You regularly accuse me of being a member of an established party.

                      Statism is really more of a disease than a party.

                      If only you would be so kind as to tell me what that "ism" means to you, then perhaps we could discuss the matter.

                    • When proper faith in the Almighty is replaced by a belief in the state, e.g. Al Gore [nytimes.com]:

                      From the standpoint of governance, what is at stake is our ability to use the rule of law as an instrument of human redemption.

                      But this is only a distilled expression of the lousy theology exhibited in the Second Bill of Rights [wikipedia.org]. Managed liberty is not liberty; Progressivism/Statism/Socialism (you have to understand that these greased pigs resist all labels) is but an ersatz substitute for the real thing, and must be rejected.

                    • When proper faith in the Almighty is replaced by a belief in the state, e.g. Al Gore:

                      That is a bit of an oversimplification, there.

                      For one, Al Gore is still a Baptist.

                      More to the point, however, his quote that you love to bring up

                      From the standpoint of governance, what is at stake is our ability to use the rule of law as an instrument of human redemption.

                      Is referring not to individuals but to the shared human condition. He is saying that laws can be made that improve upon humanity. We have seen in times past what happens when laws are discarded in the interest of profit acceleration, he is saying we can do better by instead implementing laws that are interested in improving the situation for all people

                    • Look, I don't want to ever hear you bitch again about ME tampering with definitions, sir. You're freebasing the concept of "human redemption" outright. The plain meaning of the word is clear [google.com].
                      This is underscored by the fact that Al Gore is still labeled a Baptist. He is, at best, heterodox for this act. As a member of my church, he'd be (lovingly) rebuked, and reminded that there is nothing under the sun we can do, individually, or collectively, to be redeemed.
                      In context, I think that Al Gore is doing the
                    • You're freebasing the concept of "human redemption" outright. The plain meaning of the word is clear.

                      Did you actually read the link you provided? The first definition has to do with the redemption of humanity as a whole. Why are you selectively discarding that one in favor of the second, more narrow definition? And why didn't you provide a link to only that one instead?

                      This is underscored by the fact that Al Gore is still labeled a Baptist. He is, at best, heterodox for this act.

                      So wanting to improve on humanity is a bad thing, then?

                      As a member of my church, he'd be (lovingly) rebuked, and reminded that there is nothing under the sun we can do, individually, or collectively, to be redeemed.

                      So then why do anything at all?

                      In context, I think that Al Gore is doing the Devil's work here, and preaching a false, human-crafted Gospel.

                      Is not the entire New Testament a "human-crafted Gospel"? To say nothing of the fact that global warming is not nearly as encompassing as any relig

                    • The first definition has to do with the redemption of humanity as a whole.

                      If you know shred #1 of Baptist teachings, you know what you say is simply incorrect. You're in violation of Alinsky Rule #2 here, and need to quit while you're behind.

                      Why are you selectively discarding that one in favor of the second, more narrow definition?

                      Christ died for human sins on an individual basis. If you were the only human being (as a thought experiment) Jesus Christ would've perished to redeem you. There. Is. No. Collective. Redemption in Baptist theology. Al Gore's statement, from a Baptist perspective, is patently false.

                      So wanting to improve on humanity is a bad thing, then?

                      I don't know why you'd say that. It's not actually the topic a

                    • The first definition has to do with the redemption of humanity as a whole.

                      If you know shred #1 of Baptist teachings, you know what you say is simply incorrect

                      First of all, the definition does not refer to Baptist beliefs. The first definition that you linked to is essentially agnostic in regards to specific theological denominations.

                      Second, unlike you I do not claim to be a great scholar of things that I have not read. If the Baptists hold a specific alternate definition of redemption to be core to their existence, then so be it.

                      There. Is. No. Collective. Redemption in Baptist theology. Al Gore's statement, from a Baptist perspective, is patently false.

                      Is your claim then that to be a Baptist, one must live one's life by Baptist ideals and only Baptist ideals? Strange, I recall y

                    • Is your claim then that to be a Baptist, one must live one's life by Baptist ideals and only Baptist ideals? Strange, I recall you recently attempted (and notably failed miserably) in trying to wrap up one of my statements under No True Scotsman and now you seem to be embracing it in your own argument.

                      The entire purpose of this thread has been to point out that, in a Baptist context, Al Gore's statement is full of crap.
                      If you intend to go another direction, fine.

                      Is not the entire New Testament a "human-crafted Gospel"?

                      If you think that the New Testament was merely a few Jews and a Greek faffing about in koine Greek, you may not understand life.

                      Who then wrote it? Space aliens?

                      Did you say you knew anything of Christianity [blueletterbible.org]?

                      All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness

                      I'll give you 3/4 of a No True Scotsman on that one; there are some shades of meaning you can put on the word "given" for example. But if you think that the Jews were just kind of making stuff up as they went along, then you should consider disavowing the label "Christian".

                    • The entire purpose of this thread has been to point out that, in a Baptist context, Al Gore's statement is full of crap.

                      First, if that was your only point, it took you an absurdly long time to get to said point. You literally spent days talking about things in this thread that did not in any way relate to that point.

                      Second, is the Baptist community truly that homogeneous on that matter? I don't have first-hand exposure to that denomination but I know there was plenty of room for differences in opinion in the Christian denomination that baptised (and eventually confirmed) me oh-so-many decades ago.

                      But if you think that the Jews were just kind of making stuff up as they went along, then you should consider disavowing the label "Christian".

                      I never accused anyone

                    • Second, is the Baptist community truly that homogeneous on that matter?

                      Come on down, mister. You said

                      Who then wrote it? Space aliens?

                      I replied with a conditional

                      But if you think that the Jews were just kind of making stuff up as they went along, then you should consider disavowing the label "Christian".

                      You counter with

                      I never accused anyone of "making stuff up". Indeed you have made up that accusation from nothing at all.

                      Can you clarify at what precise point you felt as though you were accused of, well, anything at all, please?

                    • Did you have an argument to make there, or are you just typing to keep your fingers moving? I read your comment start-to-finish several times (I would recommend you try the same some time) and couldn't find an argument.
                    • Did the closing question mark elude you? I asked a question. Are you feigning illiteracy as a dodge, then?
                    • If anything your closing question mark shows that you still aren't reading what you are replying to. I stand by my point that you had no apparent point to make in that comment.
                    • "Sorry, I can't understand what you're saying. I've got this banana in my ear, curling 'round my head, and blocking my vision."
                    • Is that your plight? How then do you type your replies, are you using dragon or something of that sort? It would help to explain a lot here...
                    • What is that you're on about? I've got an entire bunch of bananas on my head, like a cross between Carmen Miranda and BHO.
                    • What you're trying to do here didn't work before and won't work now either.
                    • Au contraire: absurdity seems the most efficient means of responding to you.
                    • there is nothing under the sun we can do, individually, or collectively, to be redeemed.
                      Of course there is: "Repent, and sin no more". (And since you're fallen... repeat as necessary).
                    • Fair point. Let me elaborate: "There is no work we can undertake of ourselves whereby we can say: Lord we are justified by this thing WE did under our own power." Even the act of accepting salvation is a passive one.
                    • I disagree with that a little; Salvation is a gift that must be accepted. You have free will, you can choose to accept -- or even later, abandon that gift -- however you wish.

                      But you have to make that choice if you are able to.

                      And... your faith must bear fruit.

                      (Children and the severely mentally impaired are not able to make that choice.)
                    • I'm not persuaded that, once properly accepted, salvation can be relinquished (Rom8:38 [blueletterbible.org])
                      As for faith bearing fruit: what specific fruit did the saved thief on the cross beside Christ bear? Not to discount the book of James; I certainly concur on an integral/derivative relationship between works and faith. However: no scoring!
                    • I'm not persuaded that, once properly accepted, salvation can be relinquished

                      That flies against free will. One could, theoretically, at some future date, reject Christianity and lose their salvation.

                      The Protestant argument is that they never had Salvation to begin with... so when they rededicate their life (again), are they truly saved that second / third / fourth time?

                      For some of us -- because I've experienced Christ present in the Eucharist, I could never turn away from my faith. But the choice
                    • That flies against free will. One could, theoretically, at some future date, reject Christianity and lose their salvation.

                      Again, I'm not sure you're any more capable of un-saving yourself than you were saving yourself in the first place.

                      This is probably the wrong venue for this discussion though.

                      Why so? I know some people on here that really, really need to ponder this ssuff.

                      earnestly asking Christ to deliver him

                      Fair enough. Where I can't follow is the need to set up point systems. The auto-salavtion plan is laid out in Job 40. tl;dr: you're toast.

                    • There is a misconception that the Catholic Church has a "point system" -- it doesn't.

                      What the Church encourages is to live out your faith -- and, as James eloquently points out -- a faith without works is a dead faith.

                      Logically, this makes sense. If you've truly accepted Christ, and His commandments to be more like Him, then your life *should* be different from what it was before.

                      You are correct that none of us can get to Heaven on our own. We need Christ's grace and mercy -- my point is simply, we
                    • Many Christians mistakenly believe that once "saved", always "saved", therefore they can do as they please because grace covers it.

                      Show me the mature Christian that buys off on the "Jesus the blank check" theory. That immature notion indicates an utter non-grasp of the New Testament in general, and the Roman Epistle in particular.

                    • Simple -- they're at a MegaChurch near you.

                      But what they do, when, say, Ted Haggard gets high and engages in gay sex, is say... well, he wasn't really saved before. But this time (after the whole rededication / rebaptism) it'll stick -- pinky swear.

                      And that's really where I think a lot of my Protestant brothers are incorrect -- they focus too much on whether a person is "saved" and not what happens afterward. What MUST happen afterwards that the faith should bear fruit, otherwise, the faith is dead. (
                    • And that's really where I think a lot of my Protestant brothers are incorrect -- they focus too much on whether a person is "saved" and not what happens afterward. What MUST happen afterwards that the faith should bear fruit, otherwise, the faith is dead. (Those who keep the faith to the end...)

                      And of course works flow naturally from salvation. The notion that there are some metrics associated with demonstrating salvation, itself, is an equal and opposite bugaboo. You fully grasp, I'm sure, that any mortal system implies the potential for rigging.

                      The segregation I see in the Protestant Community really bothers me. "Oh, we only send our kids to christian school (or homeschool)" -- meaning that there are fewer points of light in the public schools.
                      Or, "We only buy Christian media" -- fine, but then without Christian influence the culture rots faster.

                      Given my sons are 3yrs old and 3mos old, I understand the argument all too well. Just because Jesus reserve a millstone for those who offend the little ones affords me scant motive to offer MY two kids. Let me double down. I can recite John 3:16 all day,

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