Speaking to Secularists

"We must learn to speak to faith based voters!"

How many times have we heard those words in the wake of Democratic losses at the polling places. We have observed John McCain's destruction in 2000 by the Religious Right in South Carolina and Howard Dean's uncomfortable, forced discussion of his religious beliefs in 2004, all because politicians have been made to feel required to justify themselves to self appointed religious guardians.

And those who don't believe? Well, they're beyond the pale. Politicians have learned to fake it. Ronald Reagan, it is said, seldom darkened the door of a church before his Presidency. One of JFK's sisters, when queried by somebody writing a book on his religious beliefs, responded "that would be a short book."

Secularists, Humanists, Non-believers, Atheists, Agnostics, whatever you call us we are between 5 and 10 percent of the population, depending on which poll you believe. That's about the same as Jews in the United States, and more than Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and other groups no politician would think of offending or ignoring. Yet we are apparently the last remaining offendables in politically correct society.

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Brainfingerprinting and Civil Liberties

Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (FMRI) otherwise known, as brain fingerprinting will revolutionize how governments worldwide administer security and criminal justice. The potential repercussions for privacy rights are devastating. In years to come governments as well as corporations will possess the tools to examine an individual's brain waves and attempt to determine if they're lying.

In effect, FMRIs are neural imaging of one's brain waves. The technology allows researchers to map the brain's neurons as they process thoughts, sensations, memories, and motor commands. Since debuting a decade ago, brain fingerprinting has facilitated transparency with the cognitive operations behind behavior such as feeling stimulated by music or recognizing a familiar face in a crowd.

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Krauthammer thinks 1st Amendment does not apply to generals.

Charles Krauthammer wades into the fray between the retired generals criticizing the Bush administration and those who say that generals should keep their mouths shut. In a bizzare form of reasoning, he praises those who would praise Donald Rumsfeld's so-called military genius and then turns around and says that those who criticize them are setting a dangerous precedent akin to Saddam and other such dictators.

This, of course, is a case of selective outrage. Typical of the New Morality practiced by the Republicans, they make up all sorts of moral rules that we have to follow very strictly. But in their books, if you're a Republican, it's all good. If Krauthammer wants to be credible when criticizing generals who speak out, he needs to go after General Myers as well as the generals criticizing Bush. It works both ways.

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It Is Your Government And Your Laws And Your Military And Your War

We have often discussed where the guilt of war might lie.  It is at this point I must admit that I often become quite emotional about this issue because of my personal commitment to this country and it's military.  Having said that, I want to share a few thoughts with my friends who sometimes openly "pray" for the complete collapse of the United States military and sometimes denigrate the soldiers serving in it.

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Judicial Activism Exposed

The nomination of Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court, as well as any subsequent appointments creates a dilemma not recently witnessed in the course of American judicial history. The heightened level of consequence is well framed by the issue of abortion and the case of Roe v. Wade. Over the years, decisions made by the Supreme Court have generally granted additional rights and a generally more flexible interpretation of the Constitution. Examples include the repeal of prohibition, voting rights for women and blacks, integration, and affirmative action. Proponents of such decisions argue that the Constitution, albeit a document of arguably unequaled forethought, could not be expected to address all the issues that might occur over the course of time. They also argue that the court must often act to insure the rights of minorities in the absence of support by the majority.

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