I hate to say this, my friend Rocket, but you make more sense in your writing than in listening to you ! I get it (well, a little better than before). Very modestly, these are very necessary words. More Christians should have this out look. But as you stated, it should come natural and not from fear of damnation (or prison as you poignantly put)!
Hey Kentucky, and welcome to the forums.Â I didn't imagine anybody who knew the muslim and the preacher would ever be reading my post!
I've always made a hell of a lot more sense on paper, buddy... no secret.Â Â
Applying this consideration to selfishness vs. altruism, our desire "to live well" requires us to find the mean between these two extremes.
What is the mean between freedom and equality as it relates to the fact that this project seems to attract people mostly holding extreme selfishness and extreme freedom views whereas reality appears to be much more complex and will require a nuanced approach to build a majority political party in NH after getting off the bus?
Hey Thomas Paine, pleasure to discuss this topic with one of my favorite thinkers.Â TP, back from the dead, would surely join the FSP.
I don't think we need to be concerned about building "a majority political party" in NH.Â I'm in the LP, and I'll support the LP when I get to NH, but party politics is only one small part of my liberty-activist equation.Â I think with the success of the FSP, the LP could possibly achieve a plurality (not a majority) in NH, but that would be a result of FSP success, not a prerequisite for it.Â There are many methods of advancing freedom, an array of which are already being tried by free state pioneers and other liberty acivists.Â Each FSP participant will have his or her own ideas and priorities, but new movers will naturally be attracted to methods which appear to be achieving results.Â Ghandi didn't build a majority political party, and neither did Paine or Franklin.
And besides, whether anybody directly intends this or not, one of the FSP's effects will be a reduction in the importance of political factions.Â Simply remove pork from government and dramatically reduce taxes; there will then be much less to squabble over, i.e. much less stolen money for factions to wrestle over.Â If we can just make the prizes smaller, fewer would be enticed to play the big government game.
Can rational people (individuals or groups) hold opposing views at the same time and articulate a unifying vision of "living well"?
I've never heard a unifying vision of "living well" that was not based in liberty.Â Rational people who love liberty but hold opposing views should be able to avoid conflict on the essential ideas.Â We all have our own ways of understanding how our mutant government makes people's lives worse.Â Like a big pile of turds, big government looks a little different depending on your point of view, but you know it stinks unless you are
It shouldn't be that damn hard to demonstrate that individuals and society would flourish, in all ways, if government could be reduced to its small handful of legitimate functions.Â As long as we're unified against the idea of tyranny, we're unified enough for the Rocketman.
As for the mean between freedom and equality, that might be a topic for another thread, but I've made no secret of encouraging people to think altruistically as well as egoistically.Â The FSP will fail for sure if the people who move are not good neighbors.
You can talk about good deeds all day long, and the source of your purpose for doing them. Or you can focus your energy and just go and DO good deeds.
I agree wholeheartedly with the sentiment, Mike, but some of us are so hopelessly abstract that we can only fall in love with ideas.Â 8)Â If our love and appreciation of liberty inspires us to effect change, we need to spread those ideas so our motives can be understood, accepted, and hopefully shared!Â Altruism at gunpoint is deplorable, but I'm all for persuading
people to help their neighbors, in addition to doing it myself.Â
Also, talk and action are not mutually exclusive.Â All talk and no action is bad, but all action and no talk would also be bad.Â Conversations like these are what's most conspicuously absent from government "education," to such an extent that most Americans today are inexplicably unwilling and/or unable to productively discuss anything important.
There is nothing more uncool in the 21st Century United States than questing for wisdom, understanding, and truth, and that's what I ultimately want to see change... more so than any single detail.Â Unless I'm way off, a primary purpose of uniting nontheistic do-gooders would be to promote good deeds, or at least demonstrate the multifarious benefits of helping others.Â I know well enough to avoid holier-than-thou moralism, but there truly is a philosophical justification for non-coerced neighbor-helping, and I want to help spread it around to all the atheist Scrooges.Â If I'm not convincing, I will respect their right to remain stubbornly selfish.
I can wait a bit longer for Varrin's next post, but hopefully it won't be too