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Democratic Socialist Mormon Friends & Support

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On 4/10/2016 at 2:48 PM, Guest said:

tesuji,

I really appreciate your post, but I have already spent over a decade being patient.  ...

 

From what you have said about your ward, I would recommend you try to largely let go of politics and focus on continue living the gospel. Patience is a life-long endeavor, I think. Certainly, continue to bring up the problem in your ward with your bishop and stake president.

In my opinion, it is seldom constructive to argue politics in internet forums. Few people are truly interested in hearing views that differ from their own. Our country is becoming more divisive - not coincidentally, this is at the same time it is becoming more proud and wicked (wicked = disobedient to God). Proud people are more offensive, and also take offense more easily. It's easy for me to see now how the Nephites destroyed themselves. President Benson's talk "Beware of Pride" keeps coming back to me as I look around the world. I'm not saying you are proud yourself, I'm just telling my overall idea about the world, and why fighting about politics is usually not worth the effort.

I am certain that whatever political view a person has, no matter how educated a persons is, they still have a lot they need to learn about the world, and could very beneficially listen and learn from others' diverse views. I definitely include myself in this. If we would listen to each other instead of fighting, I think we would realize our core values are pretty much the same. We just have different ideas about how we should realized them. Also, demagogues are very happy to preach divisive, narrow views to help them gain power at the expense of the welfare of society.

Especially in an LDS forum, spending a lot of time arguing politics is counter productive to our missions as disciples of Christ, and wastes a lot of valuable energy and time. This is my opinion.

Edited by tesuji

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55 minutes ago, Godless said:

As I recall, he also said to "render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's". I'm not saying that Jesus was a socialist (though I have a hard time envisioning a Christ that would be okay with our capitalist system), but there seems to be a biblical position that, while not necessarily condoning taxation by the state, certainly doesn't condemn it as evil.

Yeah I don't think one has to necessarily oppose taxation to oppose Socialism in general.  It's true that some services are better when socialized, like police and fire departments... certainly the Military... but there are good, articulable reasons for it. 

When Socialism becomes the dominant economic system, history teaches us that hilarity ensues, but also it means there's no room for Christian values like charity.  And that's not to say we need to make sure to have a poor class so that others can benefit spiritually by giving to them.  It's just that when people rely exclusively on the State for everything, the State takes the place of God in peoples' minds.

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10 minutes ago, unixknight said:

Yeah I don't think one has to necessarily oppose taxation to oppose Socialism in general.  It's true that some services are better when socialized, like police and fire departments... certainly the Military... but there are good, articulable reasons for it. 

When Socialism becomes the dominant economic system, history teaches us that hilarity ensues, but also it means there's no room for Christian values like charity.  And that's not to say we need to make sure to have a poor class so that others can benefit spiritually by giving to them.  It's just that when people rely exclusively on the State for everything, the State takes the place of God in peoples' minds.

I think you'll find that, outside a handful of moronic college students, few liberals would ever condone a full-blown socialist economy. There's no need to cripple those who have enjoyed financial success, nor is there a need to spoon-feed a livable income to the poor. There's a middle-ground in there, and I have no reason to believe that people like Bernie Sanders are looking for anything other than this middle ground, an economy that gives people the opportunity to be financially successful on their own merits regardless of whether they're rich or poor. Welfare programs are more than just checks in the mail and food stamps. A well-funded program could also include things like employment assistance and GED and 2-year college assistance. The poor don't need money from Christian charity, they need jobs and education. Why not let the government help with that?

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10 minutes ago, Godless said:

and I have no reason to believe that people like Bernie Sanders are looking for anything other than this middle ground,

He's not looking for this middle ground.  He's talking about a revolution.  If it has to go through a middle ground first, then so be it.  But he's not self-styled as a Democratic Socialist for nothing.

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8 minutes ago, Godless said:

I think you'll find that, outside a handful of moronic college students, few liberals would ever condone a full-blown socialist economy. There's no need to cripple those who have enjoyed financial success, nor is there a need to spoon-feed a livable income to the poor. There's a middle-ground in there, and I have no reason to believe that people like Bernie Sanders are looking for anything other than this middle ground, an economy that gives people the opportunity to be financially successful on their own merits regardless of whether they're rich or poor. Welfare programs are more than just checks in the mail and food stamps. A well-funded program could also include things like employment assistance and GED and 2-year college assistance. The poor don't need money from Christian charity, they need jobs and education. Why not let the government help with that?

Because by putting that on the Government's plate, 2 things happen:

1) It becomes politicized, and politicians can use it as a red herring to get elected. ("Vote for me and I'll reduce entitlements like Welfare!" or "Vote for me to expand welfare for those who need it!")  Soon it loses all semblance of what it was meant to be.

2) The Government can now use it as a control.  "Want welfare?  Then you have certain criteria to meet..."  This is already happening in many jurisdictions.

While Private charities may have their own problems and disadvantages, that's somewhat compensated for by the sheer number of them that exist.  With the Government, it's a monopoly.

 

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10 minutes ago, anatess2 said:

He's not looking for this middle ground.  He's talking about a revolution.  If it has to go through a middle ground first, then so be it.  But he's not self-styled as a Democratic Socialist for nothing.

No politician is going to ram through any massive changes in American politics. Not while we stay a pluralistic democracy. Sanders might move the needle a little, that's all.

Unless we get a real leader who can unite and motivate the country as a whole. Or a big war or something that does the same thing. Or we get a dictator.

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12 minutes ago, tesuji said:

No politician is going to ram through any massive changes in American politics. Not while we stay a pluralistic democracy. Sanders might move the needle a little, that's all.

Unless we get a real leader who can unite and motivate the country as a whole. Or a big war or something that does the same thing. Or we get a dictator.

Sure.  The Constitution offers America the necessary protections from this type of revolutions.  And that's why it is superior to any other government in existence and why the LDS believe it is inspired.

But, let me point out a big example here... Gay marriage did not become a reality until after years and years and years and decades of the progressives making changes.  You can say, meh, it's never gonna get that bad... until you reach the point that it is.  Because revolutionaries do not look at the world as one election cycle.  They stay focused on the end-game.  And Bernie has had that focus all throughout his life.

Edited by anatess2

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Guest LiterateParakeet
20 minutes ago, Godless said:

I think you'll find that, outside a handful of moronic college students, few liberals would ever condone a full-blown socialist economy. There's no need to cripple those who have enjoyed financial success, nor is there a need to spoon-feed a livable income to the poor. There's a middle-ground in there, and I have no reason to believe that people like Bernie Sanders are looking for anything other than this middle ground, an economy that gives people the opportunity to be financially successful on their own merits regardless of whether they're rich or poor. Welfare programs are more than just checks in the mail and food stamps. A well-funded program could also include things like employment assistance and GED and 2-year college assistance. The poor don't need money from Christian charity, they need jobs and education. Why not let the government help with that?

Have I ever told you that I'm glad you're here? ;)  I totally agree with you, but I couldn't have expressed it so well.

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23 minutes ago, Godless said:

Why not let the government help with that?

Because government has power.  You don't want an organization that is easily corruptible with their power to put you in jail in charge of Christian Charity.  It fails 100% of the time.

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11 minutes ago, anatess2 said:

Because government has power.  You don't want an organization that is easily corruptible with their power to put you in jail in charge of Christian Charity.  It fails 100% of the time.

Unlike corporate welfare, I see little room for corruption in government-directed welfare programs for the poor. Running an employment office or a food stamps office isn't exactly a fast-track to positions of power. The key is to keep government programs separate from private charities. Otherwise, yes, there could be some conflicts of interest.

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11 minutes ago, Godless said:

Unlike corporate welfare, I see little room for corruption in government-directed welfare programs for the poor. Running an employment office or a food stamps office isn't exactly a fast-track to positions of power. The key is to keep government programs separate from private charities. Otherwise, yes, there could be some conflicts of interest.

You must not have lived in a Homeowner's Association Community.

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12 minutes ago, anatess2 said:

You must not have lived in a Homeowner's Association Community.

No. I've spent most of my life in apartments and military housing.

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5 hours ago, anatess2 said:

These statements posit that the Democratic system of VOTES make the system a thief for taxing the minority if the majority decides to tax people while the minority demurs.

Your problem then is not the Socialist part of that system but the Democratic part.

To a large extent, your observation is true. But, for nearly a century, USmerica was a democratic republic, not a democracy. When the fools of the early XX passed the XVII, and undermined, nearly destroyed, the federal part of the federal system, and instored more democracy, we USmericans lost a great deal.

Fréderic Bástiat, in his opus magnus, The Law, tells us that democracy can only endure a short time until the masses learn they can vote themselves largeness from the common treasury. That is (one) reason the Framers hated democracy, and gave us a republic (if we can keep it).

It is only in democracies that socialism can start. That the elites will take it away and use it to their own ends is inevitable.

With that said, everything in my original post remains true.

Lehi

Edited by LeSellers

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Guest MormonGator
30 minutes ago, LeSellers said:

Fréderic Bástiat, in his opus magnus, The Law, tells us that democracy can only endure a short time until the masses learn they can vote themselves largeness from the common treasury. That is (one) reason the Framers hated democracy, and gave us a republic (if we can keep it).

 

:: snickers :: 

I tell people if they want to really understand what I believe to read two books: The Law by Bastiat and "The Road To Serfdom" by Hayek

 

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Guest MormonGator

And "The True Believer" by Eric Hoffer is right up there too. Have you read that LeSellers? 

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8 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

And "The True Believer" by Eric Hoffer is right up there too. Have you read that LeSellers? 

I have not seen that one.

If we start comparing libraries, I suspect we'll be here a very long time.

Lehi

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37 minutes ago, LeSellers said:

To a large extent, your observation is true. But, for nearly a century, USmerica was a democratic republic, not a democracy.

Yes, you still see vestiges of the democratic republic today.  For example, the presidential primary and the National Conventions.  The party's nominee is chosen by representative democracy.  People show up to local conventions and elect delegates to county conventions, county delegates elect District/State delegates, District/State delegates elect National delegates, National Delegates choose the nominee.  At each stage the delegates are elected by a simple 50% +1 majority and at the National Convention the nominee is selected by 50% +1. 

That is a democratic republic in action.

Edited by yjacket

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Guest MormonGator
12 minutes ago, LeSellers said:

If we start comparing libraries, I suspect we'll be here a very long time.

 

Agree 100%!

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Guest
6 hours ago, unixknight said:

The Savior didn't really spend much time, that we know of, talking about economic systems, but I do know that the things He did teach don't seem to fit so well with Socialist thought.

Luke 12:13-15.  Very Capitalist.

Luke 12: 16 - 21 Very Communist (meaning the pure classical version where no one, including govt, owns anything).

Luke 12: 22-24 Very pseudo-socialist.

All of it is highly Theocratic.

Edited by Guest

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You're definitely not alone! It's really easy to feel that way in a predominantly conservative culture. I've often been made to feel unworthy for my political beliefs, causing me to feel like there's major reconciling that needs be done between be political ideologies, and church doctrine. However, that was just the cultural isolation that made me feel inadaquate. After a lot of prayer, I'm confident that my convictions are not a mistake, and God doesn't not view me as defective. I think diversity in the church is important! And I personally feel that most progressive or Liberal views best mirror Christ's undonditional love, which we are all trying to emulate.

As far as finding like minded people to talk to, I know there are several facebook groups and forums, some of which are private so you facebook friends don't see your every move. One of which, I'm a part is Mormon Liberals https://www.facebook.com/groups/mormonliberals/

I've also found some meaningful discourse on Mormons Building Bridges if you are sympatheric to the LGBTQ cause. 

Hope this helps!

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The funny thing is that i feel exactly like that too, except it is the other way around. Living in Denmark, the majority in my church have a certain level of socialistic viewpoints. People here tend to lean towards that, and i am not at all socialistic.

But i would like to be able to debate with people on these matters. Not to convince anybody, but i believe we learn from each other as humans by meeting each others differences like that. It certaintly seems like an oppertunity missed.

What bugs me is that i have to be extremely cautious with saying any of my views, because i don't notice that same attitude on debating these things in others. In stead of a friendly conversation, the horde would gather around any opposing opinion and make it an aggressive argument. Unfortunately people take offence way to easily. Not wanting to debate things are important to respect ofcourse. It just seems like it is such a natural instinct in people, to want to express their thoughts and ideas and want to learn of others, that this "don't poke the bear" viewpoint of it seems to just block it.

I totally get where you are coming from though, and that it indeed can be a lonely feeling to not be able to express yourself properly or under what you deem to be safe circumstances. Or even to almost never be able to find someone who resognates with a lot of your political perspectives.

 

Oh, and not to hijack the thread with the whole "Denmark" subject, but i had to comment the comments earlier :D  I can assure you that the utopic picture which is shown of Denmark or even other scandinavian countries, is just as true to reality as the way America is portrayed to us. Consider people's definitions of happiness are very different from each other. And that media will manipulate for their own agendas.

 

** Correction: Rather i don't notice that attitude in many others, because ofcourse there are some amongst who you are able to speak too, all be it rarely. I am just speaking in broad terms.

Edited by Milluw

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