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551 weeks ago @ iPandora - How Could A Christian ... · 0 replies · +1 points

When addressing healthcare, it should be remembered that the majority of money "earned" in healthcare is actually just restitution to the individual professional for their current and previous experiences and unprecedented commitment and requirements.

Let me walk everyone down just the most basic outline of a doctors real costs.

As a professional, the doctor has to have malpractice insurance, legal representation for when the insurance is not needed, and insurance of the hands and other tools of the trade (the hand insurance may seem ridiculous, but remember, those hands are the result of hundreds of thousands of dollars of bills and over 12 years of training . . . yah, I would be careful too).

Then, if the doctor is independent, or part of a small group, the doctor has professional staff to pay, utilities to cover, and a lease to meet.

Then, the doctor is paying off school bills . . . lots of them. Do not even think about suggesting a less expensive medical school. You are receiving world class service because of that debt and the doctor most likely did not have a large choice (you cannot just choose a med school like you can choose a college).

Finally, beyond the purely fiscal issues, the costs associated with doctors are actually a form of social thankfulness. It is through this that we thank the doctors for countless hours of physical sacrifice as they study minute detail, for taking below their training wages so that they can learn as much as possible about our anatomy, and for postponing their lives 12-15 years minimum so that we can benefit from their knowledge. If the doctor is a specialist, it is close to 15-18 years.

Sure, money may be a factor . . . many may want it. But money is not what is going to get you through, it is simply a sweet reward offered to those who were willing to take the sacrifice for a greater good.

I view these people every day and have the utmost respect for them. A couple are in for the money, but it is really less than 1% because there are easier ways to get it. The rest are their because they can. Because if they did not, there is not way the struggle would be with it . . . believe me, that is why I am a biology graduate, not a premed.

596 weeks ago @ iPandora - Socialism Vs. Capitali... · 1 reply · +1 points

I am afraid it does though. I strongly contend that a simple removal of government from the market will be all it takes to change us from socialism.

I could bring up the definition of socialism (government administration of production and distribution), but I am afraid that he idealogy of socialism is larger than the definition.

As I have mentioned, the government is using public funds (citizen's monies) to support certain products.
1) This cannot be in anyway called capitalism because the use of subsidies is always accompanied by rules regarding how the products must be made and used. This constriction is always counter-capitalism.
2) This most be called socialism because the government uses the subsidies to control prices, dictate farmer incomes, dictate product usage, and dictate product creation.

We commonly refer to the government bail out of car companies as a form of socialism because now the government dictates salaries, production (energy efficient), and distribution. All these factors are already manipulated by the government in the farm bills. The government manipulation is only enhanced by the use of subsidies.

I cannot call manipulation or control of products capitalism. It is government manipulation, and due to the use of funding as a power tool, it becomes socialism.

596 weeks ago @ iPandora - Socialism Vs. Capitali... · 3 replies · +1 points

A couple things. First, I think both your arguments side-stepped what I was really trying to communicate.

While private distributors are increasingly expanding the market share of alternate farming, the playing field is still not level. By this I do not mean that it should be "fair" with the government stepping in to mediate prices, but I mean that the field will be level when a company is required to live exclusively on its profits. When that happens, the prices of Tyson package chicken and other non-organic foods will increase and the forces of capitalism will be able to work unhampered.

Whether changing distribution effects production is not the real argument. While I would argue that it does because an artificially better distribution equals an artificially better production, the reality is that subsidies are not distribution based. Subsidies are actually directly production based. The subsidy money is used to encourage and discourage farming or just make sure that no farming takes place. This does sound like a manipulation of production.

As far as GMO's go . . .
Cows right now use corn as their primary form of grain. Corn is great for us because it has a lot of sugars that we can use, but is horrible for the 5 stomachs of the cow. Bacteria that would not be able to grow with a less nutrient rich food (i.e. grass) are allowed to grow in the cow. 5 days of eating grass would remove 90% of the bacteria, however, the industry instead rinses the beef in ammonia to kill the germs, which it only kills around 50% but exposes us to a harmful organic anion.

Chickens grow on large chicken farms are once again fed corn and housed in barns where they are two layers deep. They are so heavy that they can only walk 2-3 steps without falling. When the meat is sold, these chickens will have about 36,000 counts of toxins per chicken, compared to traditional farming which will have about 100 counts.

Are GMO's bad? Very few. But the realities of the cost of the GMO and potential health hazards would be very apparent if the consumer were required to pay for the entire GMO food. After all, if two products were about the same price and one product was rumored to be produced by a major producer and in less than ideal conditions and the other you knew to be from free range . . . what would you buy?

Organically grow meat can be bought. In fact, Walmart is now pursuing organic products too. However, what is the common reason people don't by these? Price. but, if the subsidies were removed, the cost of feeding, raising, and butchering the cows and chickens would be directly transfered to the consumer and not hidden by government money.

596 weeks ago @ iPandora - Socialism Vs. Capitali... · 5 replies · +2 points

However, it can be argued that, by choosing (through subsidies) which products to distribute and how and where to distribute them, the government is actually dictating production. As an example, the government is primarily subsidizing genetically modified grain while giving almost nothing to natural producers. This artificially reduced price then dictates a fake demand for genetically engineered grain, leading to a preference for the production of genetically engineered grain.

596 weeks ago @ iPandora - The Insane Materialist · 0 replies · +1 points

I cannot agree with this statement in its unedited form. While it is very true that insanity is brought upon logical people, the same is true for many "artists".

The insanity of logic is harder to detect because it if often used to propel a temporal belief. However, as the statement implies, because the belief is temporal and can be manipulated by humanity, the support of it will lead to insanity. I.e. because we logically trust in something that we can change, we have to trust in ourselves but we inherently know that we are untrustworthy.

However, I would argue that artist are also very prone to insanity, for the same reason. If an artist finds a temporal abstract as his inspiration (physical appearance based love, self fulfilling emotionalism), his sanity is no more stable than a mathematician trying to describe the direction and rate of travel of the universe. As a person who bases everything in logic, the artist is trying to create something eternal from something temporal. In either case, what is created is still subject to the will of what created it which is again, inherently imperfect.

The key to the statement though is where it says "The last thing that can be said of a lunatic is that his actions are causeless." This is the true distinction between sanity and insanity. Insanity fights for a cause which can be manipulated and is temporal by nature. As such, there is no trust or assurance in it. The sane fight for a cause which is by nature eternal and can not be manipulated. All the sane can do is describe the cause and not define it.

No matter the mind orientation of a person (artistic or logical), the state of the person's sanity is dependent on the basis of their inspiration or reasoning, not on their God determined mindset.

600 weeks ago @ iPandora - Would You? · 0 replies · +2 points

Three responses:

1) Ignore that option and ask yourself, if it were to allow me better opportunity to reach homosexuals for Jesus, would I?

2) If you will use that reasoning, how will building a new building help lead someone to the Lord? Are we saying He cannot use the old building? Are we saying that it is not the Holy Spirit that leads someone to the Lord?

3) The real response to the question. Our Christian influence in the homosexual community has been hurt by zealots who go on TV and proclaim, "God hates Fags" (we all know this to be untrue), or teach their children to say "I have been taught right, I don't support homosexuals." Even though this does not represent a large part of Christiandom, it is what we are viewed as.

This is perception is further supported by the not so subtle truth that pro-marriage laws are primarily supported by a christian conservative base. This knowledge alone distances homosexuals from Christians. If a homosexual knows that someone is demeaning their lifestyle, will they interact with that person? How then will we be able to interact with someone we cannot reach.

I have not thought through this last point, but I think it is worth considering. It is not our job to hate others sin. God is the one who is to hate the sin, we are to love the sinner (owe no man anything but a debt of love). Further, since one sin is as bad as another, we might as well advance laws against gossiping. If we will be so spirited about one sin, why are we not about another? It is for God to judge men, it is for us to accept and love them for who they are and encourage them to be something else . . . of their own free will.

601 weeks ago @ iPandora - If . . . Then . . . · 0 replies · +1 points

If I might interject, I think the best way to respond is that Grace is the saving action but is not involved in the saving.

If I might present a metaphor. If you are on a bridge that is burning on both ends, no matter which direction you choose to run, there will be no escape. This is a world without grace. No matter what we do, we cannot escape. Our actions and our choices have no effect on our outcome.

However, if the bridge is burning at both ends and then one end miraculously stopped burning, we could still choose which direction to run, but it was not us that stopped the bridge burning. Although our choice will now effect our outcome, that choice would have been absolutely useless without the miraculous intervention (grace).

As a final note, the belief that we are chosen (whether by grace of direct choice) negates the reason we were created. We were created to worship God of our own free will. Remember, God can force things to worship Him, but he prefers the worship to be free. That denotes a choose. While God offered the grace, with which we could never be saved, it takes our choice to accept (not create) grace and salvation. If our choice in not completely free on this earth, our worship will not be completely free in heaven.

602 weeks ago @ iPandora - If . . . Then . . . · 0 replies · +1 points

Unfortunatly, I cannot agree with your comment. While we are told that God will give us over to the desires of our heart, we are also told that He is willing that none should perish but that all should have eternal life. The reality then is that God has already chosen. He has chosen all of us. It is then our choice to accept him.

However, this choice is not a prayer or scripted "repeat after me" performance but instead a decision so profound and convicting that we make it with our heart. As a simili you can look at what C.S. Lewis wrote about prayer . . . when my heart is right, the words I say are the least important part of my prayer. When my heart is right, the words are the least important part of my salvation.

To review, you are saying salvation is based on God's selection (God changing certain people's hearts) while I contend that God has already release control of someones heart (free will) and has chosen everyone to worship Him, but some will choose not to.

602 weeks ago @ iPandora - If . . . Then . . . · 0 replies · +1 points

Our salvation is based on one thing. The sincerity of our heart. this is also the basis of our Worship. As C.S. Lewis said, when my heart is right, the words I say are the least important part of my pray.

The aspects of this in eternity are interesting. If we truly submit our hearts to Christ, God promises us at least two things. 1) He will never let us go (Once saved, always saved). 2) He will always bring us and our heart back to him. However, no such promises exist to those who have not submitted their heart to God.

So, to answer your question, there will be no consequences in heaven. Very true. There also will not be any sin. Very true. This is because people who have not truly given their heart to Christ will not be there. This is no great revelation.

However, I posted this because so many people want to worship God when they reach heaven but are unwilling to worship Him while they are on earth. However, if nothing on earth convinced them to worship God with their heart, then nothing in heaven will either. For another explanation, you can look at the story of the rich man and Lazarus.

609 weeks ago @ iPandora - Don't You Wish · 0 replies · +1 points

No we cannot. What is more, the only reason we cannot is our faith. After all, if we had no faith, or our believe in our faith was not real, what would require us to abide by and ethical standard?

This however is that largest difference between what we can do and say as Christian conservatives and what our other Republican and Democrat counterparts can say or do.

They do lie, steal, and cheat (and otherwise perform acts also associated with the devil) because for them the ends justify any means. Pay taxes, who cares? Change policies without proper authority, who cares? Teach children a single view point (which is only acceptable if you are the parent), who cares?

This is a line that the Christian conservatives cannot cross. These are tactics they cannot engage in simply because we already have our end . . . now we are just working out the means according to Godly principles.