Welcome to Jill Stein’s Victory Party — by NormanB (“Deviations from the Norm”)
Thank you, and Congratulations to Jill Stein! She ran a brilliant campaign, brought hope to hundreds of thousands of people, and lit a lamp, a direction for the future. Come to the Jill Stein Victory Party. We haven’t won yet, but we in the Stein campaign have the comfort of knowing we’re doing the right thing.
She got nearly 400,000 votes, raised and spent about $350,000: Just under a dollar a vote. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson spent about a million dollars, and got just over a million votes. They were fourth and third, respectively, in the Presidential popular vote Tuesday.
So, our work is cut out for us. There is just one Left Party in the US noticeable to the bigger Parties. The Green Revolution is needed. The Green Revolution is happening. We must not relent. If each of us who voted for Jill Stein brings in just fifteen more people, and then does that ten more times…
We don’t have time to celebrate. We have an awesome and somber task. The house is on fire, but the kids are playing Monopoly. We’ve asked Obama, the bully of the block, to put out the fire. He won’t do it because he’s playing the game.
When the President does something unjust, every time he does it, we’ve got to call him on it. Yell and point. Call a War Crime a War Crime. Atrocity is Atrocity. Murder is Murder. Self-pardoning for Murder is preposterous, and illegitimate in every case.
Every time there’s an unsolved killing, we must point out the obvious suspect: President Obama. Every time he commits a crime, we must call for prosecution. Call for a Special Prosecutor every day that there’s a reason to do so.
Maybe Obama’s going to turn honest and good this term. If so, he still needs to be prosecuted for the War Crimes and Cover-Ups. But just in case he doesn’t turn honest and good, make up your lists to distribute around the internet:
Obama’s hateful policies against Children, Women, Gays, African-Americans, Africans, Sikhs, Muslims, Minority Religions in general, Workers, Students, African Slaves, Bahraini Slaves, Home Owners, Consumers, Breathers of Air, Drinkers of Water, Eaters of Food, and his hateful policies against Mother Earth. Circulate petitions demanding that he immediately halt the Pogroms in Bahrain and the West Bank.
Every time he does something detrimental to children, point out his hateful policies against children. If he hurts or kills another child, point out other children that he has hurt and killed. Post the pictures of them dead. That is truth.
President Obama’s Hateful Policies Against Sikhs — by NormanB (“Deviations from the Norm”)
I greeted my young Sikh friend. Neither of us spoke of the tragedy. We just spoke of our mutual compassion and respect. He said his father wants him to leave this country … to a place with less bigotry, discrimination, and violence; I guess: South Africa.
During his reign, President Obama’s policies have consistently encouraged Hate Crimes against Sikhs. Below are examples. Most of the world’s Sikhs live in India. Sikhs do not cut their hair or beard. Many wear turbans. The massacre operation was carried out by a Right-wing Terrorist who was US Military Intelligence veteran who was specifically trained to carry out such Psy Ops attacks. He was indoctrinated into anti-religious Hate Groups in the Army.
But what can we expect out of a sleazy outfit like Reuters except propaganda? The New York Times [speaking of sleaze] revealed last month that both it and Reuters regularly Bribe President Obama by giving him editing privilege over wording of their articles. New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters divulged that both his paper and Reuters [and other so-called "free" press] began paying the Bribes after President Obama Blackmailed them, insisting that they would get no access to the President if they did not pay the Bribes. Isn’t it nice having a President from the Chicago Mafia? http://my.firedoglake.com/normanb/2012/07/21/ny-times-bribes-obama-and-romney-after-campaigns-demand-it/
2. Sikh Slavery in Obama’s puppet state Bahrain: President Obama, Commander and Chief of the US Armed Forces, could park the Navy’s 5th Fleet anywhere he wants. Anywhere he wants. That’s what “Commander and Chief” means. Let’s assume the reason that he parks it in Bahrain is not Only because he wants Sikhs to be kept as Slaves. Let’s assume that he has some other reason that doesn’t seem as evil. Even so, Slavery is a deal-breaker. We fought a Civil War in this country over Slavery. Here’s a Bahraini ad to buy a 22-year-old female Sikh as a sex slave, and have her delivered to Bahrain from Punjab in India. http://www.punjabimatrimony.com/matrimonials/Country/17/Bahrain.html Abraham Lincoln said “As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master. This expresses my idea of democracy. Whatever differs from this, to the extent of the difference, is no democracy.” Under President Obama’s “democracy,” or morals, or whatever you want to call it, keeping Sikhs as Slaves is OK.
3. In Obama’s Bahrain, Sikhism is illegal: The Slaves of Bahrain, including the Sikhs, are not allowed to practice their own religion. Under Bahraini Shari’a law, Islam is the only Legal religion. Even the most immoral and repugnant Slave owner recognizes that he is responsible for the well-being of his Slaves. If President Obama is to continue holding those Slaves, he is morally required to provide protection for their Freedom of Religion. So please, President Obama, I am begging you, if you’re absolutely refusing to free the Slaves, then at least, grant them Freedom of Religion!
4. Sikh religious Sacrament draws the Death Penalty in Obama’s Bahrain: Tolerated in India for millennia, Marijuana is a traditional sacrament at Sikh festivals, and among the Sikh Nihang and Bhangi sects; and the Tenth Sikh Guru, one of Sikhism’s founders, Guru Gobind Singh wrote it about as “Bhang” in his poetry, and gave it to followers. In the Indian Hemp Drugs Commission report, the Sikhs’ practices concerning Ganja are reported under the regional heading “Punnjab.” http://www.ukcia.org/research/indian/chapt9.php
6. Obama Classifies the Pakistanis it kills as “Millitants”if the have Facial Hair, even if the Murdered Pakistani isa Child, according to Medea Benjamin’s documentary Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control.
7. Obama’s Goons frequently Commit Hate Crimes Against Medical Marijuana patients, many of whom have Long Hair or Facial Hair: These Hate Crimes ordered by the President (raids on Medical Marijuana facilities) have resulted in excruciating suffering and premature deaths for patients with ALS, AIDS, Multiple Sclerosis, Skin Cancer, and many other maladies. Longtime activist Medical Rights activist Steven DeAngelo, now a Political Prisoner with long hair and facial hair like a Sikh. http://stuffstonerslike.com/2012/07/14/protest-president-obamas-fundraiser-in-oakland-ca-on-july-23/
8. The President has publicly announced that he is allowed to order Murders/Assassinations: The Murders he orders are frequently against people with beards. The high-profile Murders that Obama orders are against non-Christians.
9. Obama ordered the Administration’s investigation of US Right-wing Terrorism closed down because Rush Limbaugh and other Right-wing TV personalities demanded it. In ordering the investigation of Right-wing Terrorism stopped, he also committed a Hate Crime: He further that all Terrorism investigation be against Muslims, according to Democracy Now! This was a Hate Crime against non-Christians who might have hair.
10. The Obama Administration has cracked down on non-mainstream-Christian religious practices: Its FDA carried out a Hate Crime in Lawrence, Kansas, at a shop dealing in religious sacraments named “Sacred Journey.” Anyone can tell by the name of the place that its intentions are religious, and thus protected by the First Amendment. The owner was charged with crimes though he was growing perfectly Legal plants, and supplying Legal sacraments. Even if President Obama has an intense personal hatred on non-mainstream-Christians, he should not be empowered to put that hatred into policy against the minority religions.
11. These Massacres of US citizens happen specifically during time of war. Obama is pushing for lots more war.
12. When the Colorado Massacre happened a Few Days Earlier, Obama’s spokeperson immediately announced that more such incidents would certainly be tolerated: According to Democracy Now!, Press Secretary Jay Carney the President would say nothing and do nothing that would curb gun violence by restricting Right-wing lone nuts from massacring Americans. Carney said they weren’t gonna touch it. Terrible choice. The President’s job is to protect the American people, no matter how much money the Gun Lobby has.
The Power of the Mass Media: Newly Discovered Osama bin Laden Cave Video — by NormanB (“Deviations from the Norm”)
My two-year-old radical political performance art video got “featured” by YouTube this month, the first time that’s ever happened. It was suddenly promoted to lots of potential viewers around the globe. Please don’t watch it yet. I have a few things to say about it first.
When President Obama claimed in Autumn 2009 that he was empowered to order Premeditated Murder against any Muslim anywhere in the world, pardon himself for the crime(s), and then proceeded doing it in Somalia and Yemen; I was outraged, and ashamed to be an American.
The Muse poured out this poem through me, and by March 2010, I had an event scheduled to raise awareness, and was recording this video, with my videographer and significant other Rachel. Less than three months later, I posted my first blog/Diary here at FireDogLake.com.
This flick’s viewership is high for one of my videos. I don’t know why it was featured, but there are details and political events that relate. It has all along been viewed in Africa and in many Muslim countries. This month was the anniversary of bin Laden’s Murder (that is, the Premeditated Murder ["targeted assassination"] of the person whom Special Forces killed, then claimed was Osama bin Laden, then disposed of the body without verifying who it was).
When I recorded it, President Obama was propagandizing about going after the presumably living Osama bin Laden “in the cave where he lives.” Congressman John Murtha had courageously called for investigation of War Crime Atrocities committed by cowardly US Marines in an horrific massacre of defenseless women and children in Iraq. But instead of an investigation, hundreds or perhaps thousands of websites popped up demanding that Murtha be Assassinated for being so disrespectful to the Marines.
Soon, Murtha was rushed to a Military hospital, supposedly for a simple procedure. But instead of the usual simple procedure – the standard and safe laparoscopic surgery – the Military doctor sliced open Murtha’s body cavity with a knife and slit his intestine. That killed him. The Military assumed it was an accident. So did the press.
At the same time, ex-Congressman Charlie Wilson dropped dead. Charlie Wilson’s War was the book and movie about Representative Wilson’s covert program to arm bin Laden in Afghanistan. One Congressman talked too much, and the other knew too much. The Obama Administration, of course, didn’t investigate either of the killings, despite the hundreds of death threats from Marines against Murtha immediately before his Murder in Military custody.
Another reason YouTube may have chosen to promote this one at this time is that another video I’m in just soared to about 10,000 hits: A live concert I did a year ago with a couple of friends: President Obama’s Primary Democratic challenger and Political Theatre performance artist Vermin Supreme, and legendary Political Prisoner and performance poet John Sinclair – who was imprisoned after his brilliant work at the 1968 Democratic Convention, and finally released [despite his long remaining sentence] when his admirers and fellow pot smokers came out and raised hell – John Lennon and them. (Vermin’s popularity may have rubbed off on me: After finishing third in this year’s New Hampshire Democratic Primary, Vermin Supreme got millions of views on YouTube in several videos, and toys and sculptures were created in his image in other countries.)
This featuring by YouTube garnered about exactly 20% of the lifetime views for this video. The US views accounted for 53.4% of all views this month. Lifetime, US viewers have watched 51.2% of the showings. Most of this month’s 822 views occurred on the day it was featured, the anniversary. President Obama was sure promoting it then, bragging about his anniversary.
So here’s the phenomenon: Though I was registered as a Democrat when I recorded it, as an artist I’m more of a revolutionary communist, completely non-commercial, with no incentive for any corporate entity to push it. However, on YouTube I get my message out there anyway, in this case, four thousand times over!
So that you’ll fully appreciate the overwhelming extent of exposure YouTube gave my anti-status-quo diatribe, I’m about to get rabelaisian on you, and tell you exactly where it went. It went to 84 nations this month, and 115 total. And it went to Washington, DC, and 45 states this month, and lifetime: All 52 states: The 50 common ones, DC, and the Unknown State.
Of course, we don’t know how many of these views were recorded and then shared with people not online, but we do know that lots of the views were in countries where very few people have internet. And since it’s gotten popular in Arab countries, we don’t know how many of the views are by US intelligence agents monitoring dissent on the web, or trying to tie me to any alleged Terrorists who might listen to my songs.
And we don’t know about the Unknown Nations and Unknown States that crop up. That may be when the intelligence monitors are on, not wanting people to know which country or state they’re in. And we don’t know about the 19 additional views that YouTube chose not to include in its tally of statistics, but my best guess is they went to NSA headquarters, or maybe they just haven’t been fully counted yet. And we don’t know in which countries this video may be sometimes blocked, or prohibited completely.
Total views: 4,122 since this video was posted on March 7, 2010: Obama bin Plottin by Norman B (“Deviations from the Norm”): 822 views in the past month, mainly on its big day. Below trace those views to the viewer.
421 viewed it in the United States; 67 in Canada; 62 in California; 31 in Saudi Arabia, Florida, and New York; 24 in Texas; 21 in North Carolina; 20 in Pakistan, and Australia; 18 in New Jersey; 15 in Massachusetts, and the State of Georgia; 14 in Michigan; 13 in Ohio, and Pennsylvania; 11 in Illinois, Washington State, and Indiana; 10 in the Dominican Republic, and Colorado; 9 in Colombia, Indonesia, Nevada, Minnesota, and Louisiana; 8 in Morocco, Algeria, Portugal, Ireland, and Virginia; 7 in Austria, Peru, Germany, Argentina, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Denmark, Arizona, Maryland, Connecticut, and Kentucky; 6 in Chile, New Zealand, and Missouri; 5 in Iraq, Norway, the Unknown Nation, Tennessee, Alabama, and Oregon; 4 in Finland, Belgium, Puerto Rico, Haiti, India, Tunisia, Nigeria, the United Kingdom, Italy, and Hawaii; 3 in Israel, the Ukraine, Greece, Romania, Suriname, Switzerland, Thailand, Singapore, Ethiopia, France, Mexico, Lithuania, Ecuador, Arkansas, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, and Mississippi; 2 in Senegal, Croatia, Estonia, Fiji, the Republic of Georgia, Qatar, Ghana, Tanzania, Russia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Egypt, the Netherlands, Sweden, Poland, Idaho, Vermont, Kansas, the District of Columbia, Oklahoma, and Montana; and 1 viewer is reported to have viewed it this month in the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Spain, Guatemala, Panama, Japan, Nicaragua, Azerbaijan, Serbia, South Africa, Bahrain, the Palestinian Territories, Guam, South Korea, Armenia, Brazil, Libya, Vietnam, Jordan, Guadeloupe, Honduras, the Sudan, Kuwait, Nebraska, South Carolina, the Unknown State, Utah, West Virginia, and Rhode Island.
Not everybody goes for the hype, or even looks in at YouTube. Viewers in the following countries have also watched it, but not when it was so trendy: Malaysia, the Philippines, Kenya, Djibouti, Hong Kong, Oman, Venezuela, Trinidad and Tobago, Latvia, Sri Lanka, Yemen, Ecuador, Hungary, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Nepal, Somalia, the Maldives, Malta, Moldova, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Iceland, Slovakia, Cambodia, Costa Rica, Jamaica, El Salvador, and Angola.
It is a propaganda campaign, a ruse, an attempt to Cover Up, rationalize, legitimize, and ‘justify’ the Intrigues and Murders by the Obama Death Squads (ODS) in Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, Central and South America, and island nations.
With aid from Intelligence, this video about a minor African warlord suddenly went viral, just in time. So far, the Cover-Up is working.
Millions of mentally ill individuals are now promoting the pro-Assassination video, and sending zillions of dollars to invisible children! How do we know that they are mentally ill? Only the mentally ill join lynch mobs:
Even if they were sane before they signed on to the Murder Conspiracy, once they threw their support behind it, each of them consciously decided to Murder Mr. Kony, who is Black … believe me, while they are participating in the lynch mob, each of them is certifiably violently insane.
I’ve been sad to see some here at FireDogLake passing along lynch mob info without forcefully opposing it. Try to remember, killing people is wrong. Jesus even said so. Here’s an exposé of Kony 2012. [This is soundtrack only, so (if you're a multi-tasker) you can play the sound on another tab as you read on.] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nE4Z_iUTuw8
Get with the program! Get with the group! Get with the mob!
Kony 2012 swamped the news, it was all over! You know what else was in the news? A stupid, relatively meaningless Republican race that nobody cares about. The Republicans aren’t even trying to win, because they know they could never elect somebody as far-Right as Obama: Oh, they keep pretending they don’t like him, and keep running against him, but the far-Right Republicans have never had it so good!
Rick Santorum is just jumping up and down waving his arms around screaming ‘I’m the Stupid candidate! I’m the anti-environment candidate! I’m the dangerous candidate! If you don’t vote for Obama, then you’reStupid!‘ Obama is truly the most effective Republican President since Grant.
What is Covered Up: Meanwhile Vice President Joe Biden was down in Central America palling around with the world’s most Murderous monster, Honduran Dictator “Pinochet” Lobo, boss of the most active and notorious Obama Death Squad.
Pinochet Lobo’s ODS Murdered at least 20 journalists and 75 lawyers in Honduras during the run-up to Biden’s visit. Reporters were slaughtered throughout the region, in what can only be described as a bloodbath. (That article’s coming, and I’ll link at the end of this one.)
Obama Death Squads also Murdered at least 20 more journalists in Mexico and throughout the region. I don’t yet have stats on lawyer Murders in Mexico and the rest of Central America.
All authorities see Agosto Pinochet as a horrible bloody monster. And it is Pinochet’s career that Lobo’s Obama Death Squad seeks to emulate and duplicate in triplicate. Obama and Biden and Clinton must stop supporting these Assassinations by Pinochet Lobo’s ODS.
Obama used the Kony old news to ‘legitimize’ his invasion of Uganda, Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and recently “independent” South Sudan, five months ago in October 2011.
And, here’s some disgusting pro-Murder propaganda directly from the US Government, President Obama’s Propaganda Minister Jay Carney expressing the Obama Administration’s support for the propaganda effort.
Nearly five thousand people have been reported lynched in the US. 73% of them have been Black. So far.
There are of course the obvious parallels in the Kony lynch mob to our collective insanity when we the American people joined in bloodthirsty lynch mobs against dark-skinned Muslims like Dictator Saddam Hussein and that terrible TV star Osama bin Laden.
Oh, yeah, and the lynch mob that killed that poor Black Somali child trying to protect African resources – you know, the kid that President Obama called a “pirate” and ordered him shot. He might have been a Muslim too.
But I am struck by two other parallels.
I made a pilgrimage to Rosewood, Florida, with my partner and chicks in tow, a decade-and-a-half ago. But there is no Rosewood, Florida. You can go there, but there’s no there there. Not anymore.
We looked at what isn’t left of Rosewood, then we got the hell out of there; because, well, I had my family with me, and to this day not only are Black people still not welcome in that part of Florida, but pilgrims and sympathetic gawkers at the site of the Atrocity are definitely not allowed either.
The world’s first viral video, Birth of a Nation with its heroes the Ku Klux Klan, swept the nation like a storm in 1915. Democratic President Woodrow Wilson of Virginia watched it, and said it was “So true!”
What was true [according to the film] was President Ulysses S. Grant had unjustly occupied the South to enforce Voting Rights, Civil Rights, and Human Rights during Reconstruction after the Civil War. The film said that after the evil Grant was out of office, the KKK came in and freed the South from the carpetbaggers.
The film said the problem with universal Civil Rights is that Black people are unequal savages! Black men were raping White women, the viral video said. Immediately after the film’s debut, the KKK re-formed at Stone Mountain Georgia and lynched a Jew.
Thousands of Blacks were lynched throughout the country over the next decade-and-a-half. Somebody in Rosewood saw the movie, or heard about it, or knew about the fad.
Out of many Racist incidents in Florida in the early 1920s, Wikipedia sites this particular race riot as a precursor to the Rosewood Atrocity:
“In December 1922, a white mob burned a black man to death for the murder of a white school teacher in Perry, 75 miles (121 km) from Rosewood, and then burned down the black Masonic Lodge and other black institutions, including a school and a church. The Perry lynching was covered on the front page of The Gainesville Daily Sun for a week in December 1922, heightening tensions in the region.”
The next month at the all-White Masonic Lodge in Sumner, near Rosewood, instigators insisted that a Black Rosewood resident had raped a White woman. No proof. Were these people the KKK? That’s ambiguous. We don’t know if they wore hoods and robes after they left the Masonic Lodge. We do know a Black janitor was working there. He was also a Freemason.
We do know that rules of Masonic etiquette required that the Black Mason not betray the confidence of his White superiors. But some historians surmise that he did go warn Black residents. The White lynch mob killed people and burned the place to the ground. We’ll never know how many Blacks were Murdered that night in Rosewood.
In the early 1980s, the St. Petersburg Times exposed the Rosewood Massacre. To deflect criticism generated by that article, in 1993 the Florida Legislature began investigating the Massacre. In 1997, a film about the Massacre came out, but it didn’t get the kind of viral promotion that Kony 2012 did.
In 2004, to deflect criticism generated by film, “the State of Florida declared Rosewood a Florida Heritage Landmark and erected a historical marker on State Road 24 that names the victims and describes the community’s destruction,” according to Wiki.
What Wiki can’t tell you is this: If you go to that marker, if you see that awful site, you will not be welcomed there. You will be even more of a sitting duck than my family and I were when we went there. You’ll be a worse sitting duck than the people of Rosewood themselves:
Do NOT get out of the car! First, turn the car around. If you have good enough telescopy, you can read the sign or photograph it. Hit the gas and get the hell out. Please. These people are nobody to fuck with.
And remember: To get back to civilization from the Rosewood killing fields, it’s eleven-and-a-half miles of thin road through flat desolate swampland where anybody can see you, and nobody would grieve if something happened to you. If you went to look at that marker, you are either a nigger or a nigger-lover. Get out of there quick; but, whatever you do, don’t get pulled over!
Three years before the Rosewood Massacre, Sir James Frazer published his monumental 12-volume study The Golden Bough, which through interpolative Cultural Anthropology tells the story of the disgusting violent prehistorical slime pit out of which our current humanity has finally emerged. Or have we emerged?!
Royal families marry within royal families. This has gone on for thousands of years [that we know of]. It may have gone on thousands of years before history was recorded in written language. Yet everyone in the slime pit could see that the sperm and blood of the King and a Virgin would cause the fields to be fertile. And it was damn important for the fields to be fertile.
But if they killed the Kings every year, those Kings wouldn’t be to able breed a super race of ruler-class demi-gods, with vestigial tails from all the inbreeding. (No, they’re not lizards from Mars. Don’t be fooled by those scaly tails. They’re just inbred.) Kings determined that Kings were needed alive. They got a substitute for the King. They got him a Tanist.
Now, instead of ritually killing the King every year, the people could rejoice in treating a Tanist as King for a day, or for a year, and then killing him instead of the King. It’s such a simple way to treat simple-minded people already mind-numbed by the prevalent propaganda. Just get them chanting like the people in the Kony 2012 viral video.
Other Religions are Dumb, Wrong, Bad, and Strange: YouTube Inspires Reinstatement of Spanish Inquisition — by NormanB ("Deviations from the Norm")
Unfortunately, I’m not kidding in the title: A legislator saw YouTube videos of people allegedly in distress, allegedly while on Salvia Divinorum, and based on those videos, he introduced a bill to ban the herb. A religious Sacrament, Salvia was banned by the Inquisition in 1508, along with Marijuana, Colorines, and 200 other plant Sacraments then used in Mexico.
An fdl Seminal Diary yesterday about the Alaska Republican Primary Election titled In Alaska, Lisa Murkowski Concedes to Teabagger – End of the 30-Year Murkowski Family Reign reported on the state of the Election. The gist of that posting was that the Primary’s winner, Tea Party conservative Joe Williams, may be easier for Democrat Scott McAdams to defeat in November than notorious Republican Oil Puppet Murkowski. Near the end of the Diary, however, the writer made a cruel bigoted slur against one of the candidates. You can go there if you want, but I’ll repeat my response below, so you won’t need to click away again:
Good riddance to the murky Murkowski Oil Dynasty.
I vehemently oppose the Right-wing politics of Joe Williams.
That said, I also vehemently oppose the poster’s apparent hateful Right-wing bigotry evidenced in the post, about “this teabagger who looks and thinks a lot more like the unibomber …”
Nominally liberal Rachel Maddow also suffers from this affliction, since nearly every time she shows a photo of a man with a beard she exhibits contempt or hatred and mentions his facial hair.
But doesn’t Scott McAdams also sport a partial beard? Is he a “unibomber” too? Maybe they’re both Arabs or Muslims or Sikhs or Coptics or Amish or Jews or Hippies or Eastern Orthodox.
Millions of people follow Pope Shenouda in Egypt or Pope Benedict in the Vatican, based on the idea that each holds a tradition passed down from one of Jesus’s Disciples. Are Coptics and/or Catholics wrong? And, if so, should they be stopped? And what about tiny minority religions?
In the 19th Century, the US declared the Mormon War, but was unsuccessful in banning the religion. In the 20th Century, the US tried to obliterate the Ethiopian Zion Coptic Orthodox Church in Florida. The most visible members were imprisoned. Yet still, the "Florida Coptics" exist.
Rather than anthropomorphizing a Diety, many people today consider Nature, Scientific Truth, and the Universe to be the same as G-d.
In the late 19th Century, the Rationalist School of the Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church adopted such thought. Here’s how it was passed down to me:
1. Be good.
2. Studying primary Biblical themes enriches one with knowledge and understanding of our roots, history, culture, morals, humanity, human nature, et cetera. However, …
3. … there is no G-d, no devil, no Heaven, no Hell, no afterlife.
4. Humans evolved from earlier primates.
5. Jesus was a good man and a great teacher.
6. We ain’t Catholic.
7. Shut up and eat your peas.
The Sikhs began with the premise that the religions of both the Muslims and the Hindus surrounding them are equally good and correct, and that both deserve of respect. Later Sikh Gurus asserted that the religions of Christians, Jews, Buddhists, New Agers, and others deserve the same respect. The Baha’i Faith takes a similar tack. Strangely, Sikhs believe they shouldn’t cut their hair, while Baha’is believe that they should.
The Florida Coptics, the Rainbow Family, adherents of Rastafari, and the Church of the Tree of Life can be classified this way. Some people say "Politics should play no role in religions." Others say "Who are you to tell me what belongs in my religion?" Still others say "No one should be able to dictate another’s religion." Yet others say "All religions are ridiculous and wrong."
Quakers (Friends) and Unitarians may be considered Political Religions. Both started as Christian sects, but are liberal enough to now welcome and include some who don’t consider themselves Christian. Of course, when one starts with such a liberal ideology as Quakerism, he may come to consider himself not a member of any organized religion, as Benjamin Franklin and Abraham Lincoln did. When asked to officially declare his religion after becoming President, Lincoln wrote "Liberal."
An important Political Religion is the Universal Life Church. A formerly conservative Protestant Minister, Kirby Hensley, started it in California in 1959. From the backwoods and uneducated, Kirby had a revelation that no one should be doubted in their own religion, and therefore he began ordaining everyone who wanted to be a Minister. More than a million have taken him up on it. All four of the Beatles did. Many Americans got religious waivers keeping them out of the Vietnam War because of their affiliation with the ULC. The First Church of Bob was a congregation of the ULC.
That last title makes fun of the Bab, founder of the Baha’i Faith. In fact, its larger manifestation, the Church of the Subgenius, makes fun of every religion and spiritual concept its members know about. Pagans and Atheists also have ULC congregations.
When President Ulysses S. Grant endorsed grammar school education for all Americans of school age, Catholic schools were already proliferating in this country. Some reactionary Protestants pushed Pres. Grant to ensure that his program would teach Protestantism to America’s pupils. Grant was the leader of the Radical Republicans (not anything like today’s group called that). When the Liberal Republicans and The Nation magazine had advocated not letting newly freed slaves vote until they could read, Grant had pushed back insisting that Blacks in the South would be allowed to vote. That was called "Reconstruction." Throughout the South, Blacks were elected to political office. That ended when Grant left office. As for religious schooling, he stated that the United States must never promote the beliefs of, nor discriminate against "Sectarians, Pagans, or Atheists." Grant had a beard.
In the interest of complete openness: In 1980, I joined the ULC, the Church of the Tree of Life, and the Ethiopian Zion Coptic Orthodox Church. I now work for the First Universal Tree Of Life Church, which has been since last millennium been a congregation of the ULC.
Those of Us Who Study History are Condemned to Watch the Rest of the World Repeat It — By Norman B
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
– George Santayana
“Those of us who study history are condemned to watch the rest of the world repeat it.” — Me.
Here I am in the liberal bastion of Amherst, Massachusetts. Yet Islamophobia and related hatred of people who are different is in full bloom. I am not Muslim or Arab, but you can’t tell that from looking at me, because I have a long gray beard that can strike fear into the 10,000 or more Freshmen in this University town, who’ve never before lived in such a multi-cultural Mecca (if I can still use that term). Lots of times during my daily walk across the UMass campus, a new Freshman has seen me, and turned to run away in terror. It will probably happen again next week. I can laugh at it, but it hurts immensely.
Earlier this year, a mosque was proposed, but the haters – I mean "the neighbors" – prevented it, falsely claiming that the traffic would be a problem.
And even at the most liberal place in town, Hampshire College, I am severely discriminated against. To put into perspective just how liberal Hampshire College is: For several years Saturday Night Live aired a continuing skit with a running gag about Hampshire students: No grades, no tests, no departments, students openly smoking pot. It’s all true; and it’s alright with me.
As it happens, I am a Minister in a radical church, the Church of the Tree of Life. Hateful opportunist politicians have attempted (unconstitutionally, I think) to ban the Church by illegalizing its Sacraments, the most famous of which today is Salvia Divinorum, an herb that doesn’t hurt anyone, but makes most of its users uncomfortable and scared, because it takes them to the place of prophecy. The Church began in San Francisco around 1970, and has operated without problems here in Amherst more than 15 years. Three-quarters of the attendees at our events have been Hampshire College students.
So when a local newspaper ran a disinformation article about Salvia, I was compelled to act, including placing fliers at Hampshire College, as I’ve done for more than a decade. Ah, but I don’t look like a college student, even a Hampshire student, and I don’t dress like a professor. So, as I was boarding the bus to leave, a Hampshire College policewoman approached me with her hand on her gun, trembling profusely. I felt like I was facing that poor McCain rally attendee who, speaking of Candidate Obama, stammered “He’s – he’s a – a Arab!” John McCain, of course, said “No he’s not; he’s a good man,” as if the two are mutually exclusive.
Well, I was banned from Hampshire College, despite my history there. (I had worked there, I had performed there, had been involved in political organizing there, and my activist/performer career had been the subject of a student’s dissertation, among other connections.) And if you think that’s bad, you should see what happens if I try to get onto a plane.
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
– George Santayana
“Those of us who study history are condemned to watch the rest of the world repeat it.” — Me.
Nobel Prize Committee: Do the Right Thing! — by NormanB ("Deviations from the Norm")
Obviously, the Nobel Prize has lost most of it prestige since it was awarded to President Obama. His actions have started Civil Wars in Mexico and Pakistan. One of them is next-door to the United States, and the other has nuclear weapons, and was already on the precipice of nuclear war with India. When Bush’s initial invasion of Afghanistan nearly sparked nuclear exchange in 2001 and 2002, he backed off. He didn’t force it, and the nuke war stopped simmering so badly.
Now, Obama has gone on to start Civil Wars in Yemen and Somalia. He’s ordering killings in nearly all Muslim countries. He’s ordering longtime NATO ally Turkey to reverse its feelings about Iran and Israel.
He keeps encouraging war against Iran, supposedly for its nuclear program (which Iran couln’t afford if the US Military stopped buying Oil, which props up its price, enriching Iran, Russia, and many who paid for Obama’s Presidential campaign).>
And, let’s not forget the Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
But the Nobel Prize Committee CAN regain the international respect it once held, by recalling the prize it gave to President Obama. He has disgraced the prize. If they don’t take back Obama’s Nobel Prize, the Nobel Committee will continue to look like buffoons and puppets.
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