Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Not One Damn Dime Day

Tomorrow is "Not One Damned Dime Day" in America. It's being promoted as a way to protest the war in Iraq and the inauguration of war-monger Bush:

Since our leaders don't have the moral courage to speak out against the war in Iraq, Inauguration Day, Thursday, January 20th, 2005 is "Not One Damn Dime Day" in America.

On "Not One Damn Dime Day" those who oppose what is happening in our name in Iraq can speak up with a 24-hour national boycott of all forms of consumer spending.

During "Not One Damn Dime Day" please don't spend money, and don't use your credit card. Not one damn dime for gasoline. Not one damn dime for necessities or for impulse purchases. Nor toll/cab/bus or train ride money exchanges. Not one damn dime for anything for 24 hours.

On "Not One Damn Dime Day," please boycott Walmart, KMart and Target. Please don't go to the mall or the local convenience store. Please don't buy any fast food (or any groceries at all for that matter).

For 24 hours, please do what you can to shut the retail economy down. The object is simple. Remind the people in power that the war in Iraq is immoral and illegal; that they are responsible for starting it and that it is their responsibility to stop it.

"Not One Damn Dime Day" is to remind them, too, that they work for the people of the United States of America, not for the international corporations and K Street lobbyists who represent the corporations and funnel cash into American politics.

"Not One Damn Dime Day" is about supporting the troops. The politicians put the troops in harm's way. Now 1,200 brave young Americans and (some estimate) 100,000 Iraqis have died. The politicians owe our troops a plan -- a way to come home.

There's no rally to attend. No marching to do. No left or right wing agenda to rant about. On "Not One Damn Dime Day" you take action by doing nothing. You open your mouth by keeping your wallet closed.

For 24 hours, nothing gets spent, not one damn dime, to remind our religious leaders and our politicians of their moral responsibility to end the war in Iraq and give America back to the people.

Having been caught up in the spirit of Leftist protest we here at Viewpoint stalwartly intend to join millions of others in spending no money tomorrow in order to "shut the retail economy down." Of course, if we are successful we will inflict the most grievous financial hurt on the little folk who staff the Wal-Marts, pump the gas, drive the busses and cabs, etc.

If those single moms and beleaguered dads struggling to feed and clothe their kids are not harmed by our boycott, well, then that would tell us, unfortunately, that our protest was a failure. So, either we inflict pain upon the little people, or we don't. If we do, we can celebrate our success in bringing increased economic misery to tens of millions of low-income workers. If, however, they regrettably survive our efforts unscathed then we can at least take comfort in knowing that we tried hard to make their lives tougher and their kids hungrier.

This Left-wing logic is really pretty easy once you get the hang of it.

Pale Blue Dot

The service which sends us the Daily Philosophical Quotation the other day offered this one by the late Carl Sagan:

How is it that hardly any major religion has looked at science and concluded, 'This is better than we thought! The universe is much bigger than our prophets said, grander, more subtle, more elegant. God must be even greater than we dreamed.' Instead they say, 'No, no, no! My god is a little god, and I want him to stay that way.'

Actually, Sagan was not quite right about this. Once Big Bang cosmology came to be understood, at least in its major outlines, many Christians began to realize that the age and vastness of space had marvelous theological implications. For one thing, the extravagance of creation which people like Sagan think argues against conceiving of man as somehow significant and certainly against the view that man is central to creation, actually does the opposite.

According to the Big Bang hypothesis, the universe began in a primordial explosion of space-time and enormously hot energy, which cooled as it expanded, and from which the first generation of stars precipitated. The theory has it that those stars "lived" for billions of years, compressing protons in their cores into heavier and heavier elements and eventually dying and exploding themselves, creating even heavier elements in their death throes, and spewing this chemical debris into space where millions or billions of years later it would be captured by the gravitational tug of younger stars and condense into planets.

If God did indeed choose to form galaxies and solar systems in some fashion such as this then there are remarkable implications. It took, on this model, thirteen billion years, for the universe to produce the conditions necessary for life to exist on this singular "pale blue dot", to borrow from the title of one of Sagan's books, and all that while the universe was expanding. In other words, the process of preparing a world suitable for human habitation took thirteen billion years of cosmic evolution and all that time the cosmos was growing at unimaginable speed.

Thus for us to be here at all, given the means God employed to create us, the universe has to be just about as old as it is and consequently just about as large as it is. Its age and its size are consequent upon the choices that God made in fashioning it. We, then, really are at the center of the universe. Not geographically, of course, as the ancients thought, but ontologically. It exists as it does so that we could exist as we do.

Just as ecosystems, in order to sustain certain species of animals and plants, has to transition through many stages of development and has to encompass a certain minimum size, so, too, does the universe have to be at a certain stage of development and of a certain dimension in order for life to emerge and thrive anywhere in it.

When looked at this way, the vastness and scope of the universe astonish us even more than they would otherwise. We are left speechless at the fact that God did all of this just so that we could inhabit a tiny speck of it, just so that we could be.

Second Term

As the Presidential Inauguration draws nigh we thought our readers might enjoy this amusing piece of political humor sent along to us by Dick F.