published Sunday, September 16th, 2012

'Nation fares better under Democrats' and more Letters to the Editors

Nation fares better under Democrats

Political satirist Stephen Colbert claims “reality has a well-known liberal bias.” It appears he is right. Although Republicans extol virtues of fiscal conservatism as if it were an indisputable law of nature, an article of faith, if you will, the facts reveal just the opposite.

Over the last 60 years under five Democratic and six Republican presidents, except for the wealthiest 5 percent, we’ve fared significantly better under Democrats when judged by these five key economic measurements: GDP growth (4.1 percent v 2.9 percent), employment (2.9 percent v 1.7 percent), inflation (4.0 percent v 5.1 percent), Dow Jones performance (8.1 percent v 6.5 percent) and the U.S. dollar valued against European currencies (+0.8 percent v -3.6 percent). The differences are even greater when George W.’s eight years are considered alone.

These measurements have been astonishingly consistent over the years, even in constantly changing circumstances. The Democrats seem to do better no matter what you measure, how you measure it or how you manipulate the data.

In view of the alleged liberal bias of the mainstream press, we might wonder why these facts have remained largely unpublished. But although the columnists and reporters might lean slightly to the left, the media moguls do nothing of the sort.

GEORGE B. REED JR.

Rossville, Ga.


Look for insight, not confirmation

Over the past year I have read more letters to the editor threatening to cancel their subscription than I can remember. I have read letters from both the far left and extreme right criticizing an article or an editorial. I say to those people, cancel the paper now! If facts in an article don’t agree with your “accurate account” of events, you already know everything anyway. If an editorial disagrees with your “better” opinion, then no editorial will allow you to think from a different perspective.

Sometimes we have to ask ourselves whether we are looking for news and insight or just personal confirmation. Take heart, though, there is always Fox News or MSNBC. Keep up the good work, Chattanooga Times Free Press!

LARRY PICKARD

LaFayette, Ga.


Crutchfield not an option

Former Tennessee state Sen. Ward Crutchfield is being suggested as a candidate for the Chattanooga City Council. His opponents would be Chris Anderson and Manny Rico for the District 7 seat. Crutchfield shouldn’t be an option.

Chattanooga remembers why he was forced to retire from his Senate office. Crutchfield’s neo-liberal politics don’t align with the needs of the people residing in District 7. He was caught accepting $12,000 in bribes during an FBI and TBI sting named Operation Tennessee Waltz. He pleaded guilty, got fined $3,000 and was sentenced to six months of home confinement. Crutchfield also hoarded $166,000 of leftover campaign contributions in a war chest back in 2008. This is money that he is not allowed to keep for himself.

There is no reason this city should trust him. Chattanooga already has enough corruption in City Hall with Littlefield’s sketchy land deals and his overpaid unregistered lobbyists. If he runs, don’t fall for Crutchfield. Vote wisely.

DANNY FREEMAN


Help Howard revive its band

I am a middle-age white woman who has written many times to the paper to complain about the many problems in the black community, the crime, the gangs, the over representation in public housing. I haven’t been happy about most things I have read. However, after reading about the problems facing the Howard High School band with students having to play instruments literally held together by tape, I cried, and that is not a figure of speech, I really did cry.

I challenge the churches and other schools to donate a hundred dollars, or a hundred pennies, or a hundred any amount for the “marching 100.” Howard High is trying to come back, and their band would and will give them something to be proud of and strive for.

If my creaky memory doesn’t fail me, seems I remember back in the day when we had parades downtown, Howard High was a force to be reckoned with — unbelievable. Now more than ever with the gang problem, young people at Howard High need this so badly, so please all of you give a hundred for the marching 100 and enable them to make Chattanooga proud to have such a band.

ANNE REEVES


Elect president by popular vote

The Electoral College system has to go. Everything I see and read about this upcoming election reminds me that ultimately my vote does not matter.

I am told if I wanted my vote to matter I should have moved to Ohio a few weeks ago. Elections based solely on the popular vote would make people feel the urgency to vote. Even though your vote may not make a difference in the winner of Tennessee, it may be the vote needed to push things over the top on the national scale. I know a lot of people who do not vote because they think that their voice does not matter.

While we may not be able to declare a winner by 11 p.m. on election night, I would be OK with that. Take two weeks, take a month, as long as every vote, every ballot, and every absentee is counted we can feel good about the outcome.

The need for the Electoral College system has long since passed. In a world of 24-hour news, high speed Internet and smartphones, we have an informed electorate which is more than capable of making a choice. If we can pick an American Idol by popular vote, we should be able to pick a president the same way.

MATTHEW DeGLOPPER


Move ahead, but don’t overlook past

In Clint Cooper’s online article “Highland Park Baptist moving to Harrison, changing name,” he wrote and included a quote from the new pastor, Dr. Jeremy Roberts:

“(Dr. Lee) Roberson, who was pastor for 40 years and started Tennessee Temple University and Temple Baptist Seminary, retired in 1983, several months before (Pastor) Roberts, 28, was born. ‘That’ said Roberts, ‘is a wake-up call for Highland Park Baptist Church to move on.’

As a graduate of Temple and admirer of Dr. Lee Roberson and Dr. J.R. Faulkner, I ask Dr. Roberts: Since you just arrived in April, is it possible that you do not know the plethora of godly men and women who paved the way for you to pastor one of the greatest churches in the history of our state? You implied the past was “asleep” and you are going to “wake up” the ministry. Do not overlook thousands of people who became Christians because of Highland Park Baptist Church, or who are missionaries, or who are members of churches established by HPBC, or who were educated under some of the best, godly professors at Temple.

We need to move forward but not forget the important foundations that were laid before we even arrived.

MAYLOU HOLLADAY


Government, religion don’t mix

Many Christians have skewed notions of religious freedom. I have Christian family members and cannot help but be bombarded by things I personally believe to be nonsensical and wasteful of our human potential. But this does not mean I want to suppress anyone’s right to practice their religion or believe such fanciful fantasies.

When the Freedom From Religion Foundation noted that no school board should pray before meetings, it was not saying anything about whether Christians have a right to pray for family members suffering or just to talk to their deity for some consolation about the unknown and frightening nature of our world.

The government and any extensions thereof created by taxpaying citizens have no reason to be involved in religious matters or place a religious endorsement or favor toward any belief or lack thereof. I would feel insulted if someone was trying to promote any variation of a disbelief in God in government as much as when someone promotes belief in God as if that will solve our political problems. People’s belief or nonbelief in anything supernatural is not pertinent to recovering our country: it is our shared values of liberty and justice for all.

JARED COWAN

Sewanee, Tenn.

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ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

"Government, religion do not mix" ???

When Jesus Christ is in the heart of man, goodness is present. Conversely, when He is not in the heart/spirit of man, then evil is present. Mankind has a free will to choose Jesus Christ, or, to have what the United States is experiencing now. People could have chosen the easy yoke, and, light burden of Jesus, but, through unbelief, they are choosing rather to go into cruel bondage. Little-by-little, as the Moral Majority stayed quiet, Jesus Christ was rejected. Then, replacing Jesus, came atheistic/agnostic/evil methods of life in U.S. society. The Lord God of Hosts has throughout history chastised His children. He allows cruel/savage governments to punish His children for disobedience. It is not too late! Will You continue to let the atheists, agnostics, non-believers have their way? If You truly do not want the cruel bondage that is otherwise coming to us, then speak up for Jesus! Get active! Embrace His freedom and His love for us all.

kwo

September 16, 2012 at 11:23 a.m.
ToHoldNothing said...

Jesus is not, and has never been, needed for humans to behave ethically and morally. Evil is always present in some sense or another in Christian doctrine, if only because we are incarnate entities and subject to this supposed "sin nature". The U.S. has been through hard times before in the last century (e.g. the Great Depression, World War 1 and 2) and any correlation or connection to be made to rejection or acceptance of Jesus Christ is moot and/or irrelevant to the more explicit evidence as to why they happened.

Hitler, for instance, believed Jesus was an Aryan progenitor of sorts and that one's Christian duty was to bring heaven on earth by removing the God killers and other impurities from earth through his whole ethnic cleansing plan. You think believing in Jesus Christ automatically turns a person moral or ethical? Hitler's just one example of many I could bring up of Jesus believers who are nonetheless abhorrent human beings.

Jesus is not an easy burden unless you are a mental slave and refuse to have any independent thought or even use your brain to think critically or rationally about anything. Instead, you assume this overlord you call God/Jehovah/Yahweh/Allah/etc has all the right answers and you should never question it or be subject to potential punishment at any time for any perceived slight.

I would rather be in the bondage, as you call it, of secular and philosophical reason and ethics, than be free and conform to antiquated and outdated standards of right and wrong, good and evil, acceptable and unacceptable

I resent any such claims that atheism/agnosticism is equivalent to evil, when I can easily make a justified conflation between theism and evil with support and substance to my argument.

Atheists, agnostics and nonbelievers in Jesus Christ are by far a larger majority than your believers in Iesous Christs Yeshua Mashiach ever were in history. You need to learn to get along and stop being entitled brats about your supposed religious rights that somehow include foisting it on everyone else who doesn't believe it.

Btw, I didn't choose that headline for my letter, the editor did. Mine was "Christians have skewed notion of religious freedom", which might have been a bit generalizing, but still got the point across. Maybe if I had added "Some" to the beginning, it would have worked better as a fair minded statement.

September 16, 2012 at 5:34 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

ToHoldNothing,

For many years i thought much as You do now. Most, i think, believe their opinions are correct, and therefore, true. This is precisely why we cannot do, as You have done, and compare ourselves to ourselves. Hitler was human. We are human. The absence of light is dark (less light/no light). The absence of heat is cold (less heat/no heat). It is imperative that we compare ourselves (humans) to Jesus Christ of Nazareth 'only'. Then, and only then, will we realize to what degree the Light is diminished toward evil. Government and Religion can never mix in this regard...kwo

September 16, 2012 at 8:20 p.m.
ToHoldNothing said...

But the absence of dark is light. Darkness and light are not polar opposites, they are complementary to each other. You cannot have light without darkness and vice versa

I do not believe my opinions are correct, I can argue that they are and demonstrate in said arguments.

I compare myself to no human as an absolute standard of goodness. Not Jesus, not Siddartha Gautama, not Mohammed, not anyone. I am myself and I am always in flux as a person, as a human being engaging with the world and changing my perspective, increasing my knowledge and wisdom.

Government and religion have no primary reason to mix at all. Any reason they would is incidental to people holding religious beliefs that are also justifiable by secular arguments.

September 16, 2012 at 9:44 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

You said, "But the absence of dark is light". I will only ask you, if it is worth Your time, to research Your statement. There are facts regarding the physics of light You may want to investigate. +(:>

Also, Jesus Christ, on earth at least, was all God and all man at the same time. The theology of this is to be discovered in the word 'Kenosis'. We are not, in any sense of the word, comparing ourselves to a human only. Consider taking a look at the encyclopedia article linked below. Thanx, kwo

September 17, 2012 at 1:24 p.m.
Easy123 said...

Orr,

Darkness is the absence of visible light. Your self-proclaimed knowledge of physics is severely lacking.

"Also, Jesus Christ, on earth at least, was all God and all man at the same time."

This is a physical impossibility unless you define the words "God" and "man". Once you have done so, you will understand how a "God' cannot be a "man" or vice versa. The two entities are exclusive of each other by definition.

September 17, 2012 at 2:04 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

Easy123, Do You see any difference in what ToHoldNothing stated, to wit: "But the absence of dark is light.", and, what You said, "Darkness is the absence of visible light.". This is one of the reasons i keep repeating to some folks who comment on this site..."Look a little closer"..."Look, and, then, look again". Following is an interesting concept:

Physically, darkness does not exist; there are no elemental particles of darkness; darkness cannot be measured or sensed. What does exist in various places to various degrees is the relative absence of light; which for language communication convenience we label with the term "darkness".

Cite: Giles

September 17, 2012 at 10:33 p.m.
Easy123 said...

Orr,

There is no difference between the two statements. If this is true: "Darkness is the absence of visible light." then this "But the absence of dark is light." must be true as well.

You are arguing semantics. The word "darkness" does exist. The word darkness means "the absence of visible light". Therefore, when someone says "the absence of dark is light", essentially what they are saying is "the absence of the absence of light is light". You can't say my statement is any more true than ToHoldNothing's statement. To do so would be fallacious.

Your knowledge of physics is severely lacking. You have no argument here. But I'm sure you will continue to argue and double down on your ignorance.

September 17, 2012 at 11:04 p.m.
ORRMEANSLIGHT said...

Easy123,

Do You really feel confident arguing with the legends and modern day giants of physics? If You do have a Psychological Counselor (and i think everyone should have someone to talk with), then, ask them if You might fit the diagnosis of O.D. = [Oppositional-Defiant). Then treatment could transpire and You would soon find more freedom. This is friendly advice. kwo

September 19, 2012 at 1:10 a.m.
Easy123 said...

Orr,

"Do You really feel confident arguing with the legends and modern day giants of physics?"

I'm not arguing with physics. You seem to have a quarrel with it though. I'm not the one trying to defy science, nature, physics, logic, reason, etc. with outlandish claims.

"ask them if You might fit the diagnosis of O.D. = [Oppositional-Defiant)"

You are not an authority figure. Neither is your mythological deity. Therefore, I do not fit the diagnosis. Should we go into the psychological diagnoses that fit you?

"Then treatment could transpire and You would soon find more freedom."

The only person that needs treatment here is you. That has been well documented for a while now. You will never find freedom from your troubled past and delusional obsession with your religion unless you seek professional help.

September 19, 2012 at 3 a.m.
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