blue bits. red rocks.


singulus said: "Just wanted to Thank You for the referral to 'Diglotting' ...


A stupendous site, and enjoy tremendously all the posts on Jurgen Moltmann. And like the chief diglotter there, Moltmann has supplanted all others as my favorite theologian to read. Been on a Moltman kick, just started The Coming of God, and recently completed God in Creation, which after the few few chapters, I thought was not as stellar as the other half-dozen Moltmann books I rate all as 5 star standouts, but then the last half of the book rattled my mind and completely shook me to the core (as is the case with all Moltmann’s works). Some of his early books, mainly Theology of Hope were tough plodding as I struggled with all the references to Bloch, Hegel and other German theologians/philosophers. But even when half of the material flew over my head, passages in the other half more easily grasped, totally gripped and touched me in a profound way.

ininterestingtimes said: Do you belong to a church that practices the kind of Christianity that embodied in the religious posts you make or are you a believer on your own? Also You never got back to my if you have read the book The Pagan Christ by Tom Harpur?

I do not think there is any church that “practices the kind of Christianity embodied in the religious posts” here on the AZspot ranch in total lockstep. Nor one that completely exemplifies a true fellowship of Jesus way followers in the manner which I envision. Which is why we have contemplated launching our own variant of ecclesia, but for the present, I do belong to a church affiliated with the Vineyard movement — and out of the cornucopia of Protestant church traditions, I am on board with its kingdom theology and call for ministries of compassion.

No, I have not read The Pagan Christ by Tom Harpur. Can you share with me what is the significance and merit of this title? It looks interesting, but leery of the book jacket blurb suggesting Christianity is just an imprint of ancient Egyptian religions. No, not by any credible scholarship.

antelopebaby-deactivated2013042 said: You said that in order to get through a book or article quickly, or even at all, it should be about something you're interested in. But what if the subjects you are interested in have almost no practical applicability to your life or career? What if you are pretty much sure you will be pursuing a career in economics or finance, but those subjects bore you so much that plowing through them is pure drudgery, and you are very much interested in psychology, anthropology, sociology, and the likes?

Well, you still have a choice.

You can either (a) choose to foster and cultivate an inkling for those subjects that “bore you so much” or (b) opt for pursuing studies in an endeavor you cherish.

The choice to persevere in a field you have no passionate interest might seem bum advice, but sometimes, you might not even be aware that there is aptitude and fondness within you, waiting to be kindled by a deeper dive into the subject material. And conversely, sometimes, an academic discipline might appear attractive at the introductory level, but turns into drudgery when you descend into weightier work.

And concerning the latter option, I will repeat the old adage that if you find a job you love, you will never work another day in your life. If you are truly passionate about a life long pursuit of a particular practice, I believe you could ensure somehow to make it work enough to scrabble together necessary food and shelter (and clothing).

kohenari said: The issue for Sides, to my mind, isn't whether or not Obama failed to come out spitting fire from the moment of his inauguration; the issue is whether or not "command of the narrative" actually matters at all. And, if it somehow does matter, which seems to be a bit dubious, does a certain sort of narrative command actually lead to getting even *less* done than attempts at bipartisanship?

Andrew Gelman has another good post on all of this at the Monkey Cage this morning; it's a slightly different take with the same general conclusion.

I wish I had more time to properly respond, but just a few words before I dash off to work duties — on this “command of the narrative” (my paraphrasing), I side with Westen — it’s how Reagan was popular despite the public, in the aggregate, being opposed to his policy planks. And it was how FDR achieved so much, despite the revisionist nonsense I see floated by The Monkey Cage and others. FDR rallied the public and was immensely popular, and so was Reagan to a degree, that irked liberals to no end, who puzzled over how this could be whilst public opinion, according to polling, was decidedly in their court on the issues. FDR ultimately overreached in his tryst to stack Supreme Court justices that thwarted his policies.

And this blurb by Gelman is ridiculous:

If you accept the hypothesis that Obama came into office expecting an economic turnaround in four years, then everything makes sense. Why would he attack Wall Street in his inaugural address? No need to piss off the moneymen. Why be partisan? Better to pass moderate legislation with 70 or 80 votes in the Senate rather than fight to the death to get everything on the Democratic party’s wish list. Long-term, the 2006 and 2008 elections gave a lot of people the impression that the Democrats would be in the driver’s seat for awhile, so there seemed to be no rush.

If Obama truly expected an economic turnaround in four years, then that belies the sinisterness in a stimulus that primarily propped up the failed financial institutions (in lieu of more demand focused stimulus) and was sold to the public on the notion that utter financial collapse and catastrophe stalked the public without enacting such a costly measure pronto.

Ensconced in their academic circles, Gelman and Sides (and that goes for many of these “analyst” perspectives), fit perfectly into Westen’s adage about issue focused v. narrative.

xiuminded said: Are you an existentialist?

I disavow allegiance to isms of any sort, including existentialism.

Though I have grown quite fond of reading Kierkegaard, Sartre, Camus, etc.…

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kenluong said: Hello,

I'm a newbie in SEO, so I really need more links for my website.
Could you please add my link to your sidebar. It's just a simple link.
I'm very appreciated that.
Thank you so much.

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Of course, I will do something to pay for your help if you need.

Sorry, I do not do that sort of thing here.

Good luck on your SEO quest…

misterbailey said: What are your thoughts on The Zeitgeist Movement?

I am uncertain, exactly, on what The Zeitgeist Movement entails.

It’s Wikipedia entry describes its telos as such:

The core idea advocated by TZM is the replacement of current civilization with a money-free and cybernated “resource-based economy”. The Zeitgeist Movement and the Venus Project promote replacing human labour with automation, government will be through collective participation of the public, aided by advanced cybernation. According to the movement, there will be no decision-making process regarding greater social issues by human beings, those decisions are arrived at by using the scientific method, based on the carrying capacity of the Earth, rather than using human opinions. The replacement of human decision making by artificial intelligence is termed ‘Social Cybernation’. Private property will not be abolished, but it will become obsolete as culture grows, being replaced by “a system of universal access”.

I have not seen Zeitgeist: Addendum, but I did view the Zeitgeist: The Movie, the first. And I found it be a rather poorly sourced conspiracy story, based on dubious, shoddy history. Not just in the atrocious third that proffers a Jesus myth hypothesis, but all the parts, including the ridiculous Federal Reserve Bank ravings, that seem more at place in anti-semitic, John Bircher Glenn Beck fulminating tracts.

But I am thoroughly down with replacing human labour with automation. :)

chill said: Love the blog. However the theme you use doesn't have permalinks for the entries. Sometimes I just cruise your page and find stuff i want to reblog or like but it difficult to do so

Permalinks exist for all post items, with the exception of question/answer posts (which a “permalink” is still accessible in a sense, via the “comment? link). On some displays, they might be difficult to see as it is a faded sun that “lights up” when you hover over it.

/yes, a theme refresh in entirely in order. When I get a few free hours to dive in, I will create a fresher theme, more suited to the 2010s.

/thanks for the note and for reading :D

emmtotheatt said: Hey, just wanted to drop in and say that 1) I love your blog. And 2) Despite the fact that Tumblr is a largely atheist community and despite making the spotlight as a politics blog, you still post Christian articles and such. While I love the political things you post, some of the things I most look forward to are what you find on Christianity and spirituality. Keep up the good work :)

/thanks for your readership :D

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highlyskeptical said: I saw the historical image. What do you think about affirmative action?

Since I’ve allowed this question to germinate in my queue, it might be of value to share again, the original "historical image" post that this question is in reference to.

Essentially, in principle, I am in agreement with the tenets of affirmative action. Especially in the realm of government jobs and contracts for service. Conservatives who lambast affirmative action policies like to allude to the legendary Martin Luther King epigram clipping "…judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character" as if to pronounce the exalted civil rights champion as an adversary to affirmative action programs. Nothing could be further from the truth:

In a 1965 Playboy interview, King compared affirmative action-style policies to the GI Bill: “Within common law we have ample precedents for special compensatory programs…. And you will remember that America adopted a policy of special treatment for her millions of veterans after the war.”

In King’s teachings, affirmative action approaches were not “reverse discrimination” or “racial preference.” King promoted affirmative action not as preference for race over race (or gender over gender), but as a preference for inclusion, for equal oportunity, for real democracy. Nor was King’s integration punitive: For him, integration benefited all Americans, male and female, white and non-white alike. And contrary to Gingrich, King insisted that, along with individual efforts, collective problems require collective solutions.

However, let me toss out a caveat — that legislative affirmative action mandates, especially in the private sector, have engendered appreciable backlash, particularly from white underclass elements, that perceive such remedial measures as “reverse racism”. Before you patently dismiss their claims, consider that inequality is not a binary toggle and many poor white citizens suffer from a similar set of built-in economic encumbrances.

Which is why I advocate for broader initiatives, like a living wage that solve the problem at a higher, root level. And make no distinction on race or other genetic or environmental factor — simply by magnitude of economic inequality.

countlessscreamingargonauts said:

I am wondering if you could give an explanation on the Gaza Strip and its importance...I mean, Im aware of the going ons, but Im always confused when it comes to the Strip itself.

I am no expert on historical goings on of the Gaza strip, but I did compile a short list of article links on the topic for you:

lordsteezy said: Hey,did you ever fix this? i'm having the SAME EXACT problem.

No, the Tumblr Queue is not misbehaving in such a manner for me.

But, I must confess, I do not rely much on its auto-publish capability, as I still deem it to unreliable for such a task. However, as a “holding” queue, it has served aptly, though in recent days, I have noticed an irksome trait — random placement of new added queue posts that seem to end up at the top, middle and bottom. But it is not dumping the entire queue contents in the manner which the aforementioned rant link details.

bbalgangyi-deactivated20140510 said: Just a quick tip, if you're going to post xkcd comics, it's a lot better to post the alt-text with it. If you place your mouse over the image on the website you'll see the alt-text where the author of xkcd often includes some commentary or little jokes with the comic.

You know, for some reason, I had forgotten this D;

So then I spent the next several hours scrolling through xkcd strips…

noinvinciblearmies said: why the sudden focus on weight?

Maybe I need help for my condition.


cherrydi-deactivated20120924 said: Hey, I need a big favor !!! I found you through the Politics section in Tumblr, because I'm trying to get my post reblogged many times for my Government project grade. My teacher is going to grade me according to how many people reblogged my piece. I chose tumblr, because it is a source of major people interested in these themes. I posted an art piece, that consists of the American Flag. Each star is replaced with a tree, that represent the increasing deforestation that has been going on since a very long time in the USA and it hasnt been able to be controlled. If you could please check it out, it's my second post in my dashboard. I would greatly appreciate this. THANK YOU !!!!!

Really? Teachers grading on the basis of how many Tumblr reblogs can be attained?

Holy Exploding Tumblr, Batman!

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