Wisdom from the Web
On the Vail Daily Web site, you can comment on each story or editorial you read there.Here, we publish excerpts of those comments:Re: Evolution a worldview, not science”I completely agree. Einstein saw physics as a way to explain and comprehend the natural laws that were put in place by God and not as a way to debunk him or disprove his existence.”Albert Einstein was no believer. Like other notable scientists such as Stephen Hawking and Richard Dawkins, all have at one time or other made reference to God. This should not be taken to mean these men actually believe in the existence of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic invisible (yet anthropomorphic) supernatural interventionist guy in the sky. Re: flatlander: Babysitting Eagle CountyThere really is someone at the Daily who is informed, smart and socially astute! Kudos to Web Editor Austin Richardson for his thinking and courage to buck the socialist tide. You should run for county commissioner.Re: Belief in the ResurrectionUnknown authorship? If you had bothered to read the Bible, you would know that in many cases the author of the individual books say who is writing it. Examples are with Paul, Luke, Peter, etc. That’s just in the New Testament. We know that 66 authors contributed to the Bible over a substantial amount of time, although it is true that there ]are some authors we don’t know such as the writer of Hebrews. Pushing a sectarian religious view? The Old Testament is about Judaism, certainly not a sect of any other religion. The New Testament is about what would later be called Christianity in the early church of Paul and the apostles, an extension of Judaism. Christianity broke away from that very dogmatism that controlled the culture of the time. Revised from its original form? Any noteworthy scholar will tell you that we know more about the original Biblical scriptures than ever before. In fact there are more original manuscripts of the New Testament that were found in differing places of geography and culture that read word for word than even the Iliad. And that book hardly ever gets bashed on for accuracy. Hmm. The Old Testament as we have today has been around since the Septuagint, which is the Greek translation of the Hebrew (Jewish) texts. We are reading similarly what Jesus read himself with minor modifications for language barriers and altercations. …Re: Forest may trim ATV trailsDon’t worry. The Forest Service will spend all of its money on planning and there will be nothing left for enforcement or god forbid, trail and road maintenance.Smokey is now a bespectacled grumpy old bureaucrat locked in a closet forever revising meaningless plans, which are never funded and just stacked on the shelf with all the others. At least it keeps the timber side of the agency busy cutting tress for pulp to make the paper for the plans. …Re: Belief in the ResurrectionI have read the Bible, and made a fairly exahustive laymen’s study of it. Perhaps “obscure” would have been a better term than “unknown,” but the authorship of most of the Bible is essentially or completely unknown. We have deduced a few things about the authors of the Gospels, but even the names Matthew, Mark and Luke were assigned more or less arbitrarily to those works (none of them contain a self-identification by the author); “John” identifies himself as such in John, and says he was an exile on Patmos, etc., but he, like the others, is unknown outside the few (or no) claims he makes for himself in his Gospel. We have fragments of ancient gospels that conform to the ones in our canonical Bibles, but they are not the “originals,” which were, as far as we know, purely oral. We have no way of knowing whether the fragments we have are part of the original written corpus of works. No gospel was written by an eyewitness to the events they describe. The first (Mark) was not written until some 30-40 years after Jesus’s death. In the first century or two A.D. there were many more gospels in circulation than the four in our Bibles. The four were chosen more or less arbitrarily by councils of bishops in the third century who voted on it. (Sure , the various epistles of Paul are most likely written by Paul, but there is no extra-biblical corroboration of them, or of him.)The OT has been around a lot longer than the Septuagint. But its origins and authorship are, of course, even more mysterious than those of the NT. Moses did not write the Pentateuch, and there is no extra-biblical corroboration that Moses even existed. (I’m sure that Moses, or at least some character who “Moses” represents, did exist, though I’m skeptical of the miracles attributed to him.)These are the findings of “secular scholarship,” which you may entertain or reject depending on your worldview. I’d say at the very least they raise troubling questions about the Bible as reliable history, especially as pertains to the miracles.This “underlying theme of love” you claim for the Bible predominates in the NT, but this clashes pretty dramatically with the tone of the OT, where we get such advice as “happy is he who dasheth the little ones’ brains against the rocks,” and “the rebellious son shall be stoned to death.” I admit I haven’t read the Quran but I gather, from what I’ve read about it, that it is full of similar mixed messages. Today’s most fervent Christians, like their Muslim counterparts, seem to revel in their holy book’s most hateful and violent precepts.Re: Charter school’s a valid choiceDon Rogers is correct. (I was going to say he is “right,” but thought he might resent the implication.) Tamara Miller can’t know why parents make school choices until she has faced that choice herself. I have often observed that even the most liberal parent at some point puts his/her own child’s interests before the ideal of multiculturalism. I am reminded of a woman in Santa Barbara who fought the good fight to keep white parents from moving their children to less-Hispanic suburban schools. For years she kept her children in a school that eventually became Hispanic-dominant and more important, Spanish-dominated. She couldn’t communicate with other mothers. PTA meetings were in Spanish. Spanish-speaking parents were mistrustful of her. Her years of volunteering at the school library were rebuffed. The straw that broke her dedication to the local school was that not a single classmate came to her son’s birthday party. Not a single classmate. So this daughter of a liberal Democrat California state senator, this lifelong activist for liberal causes, enrolled her child in a nearby school where most of the children spoke English, where other parents would speak to her, and where her degree in library science would be welcomed. The parents from the school she had defended for so long said that she removed her child because she didn’t want him to sit next to brown kids.Re: Letters to the EditorNice try, Roger Brown. I don’t care if out-of-state home owners pay for an increase in taxes, but you can’t do it that way. All of us who live here and pay taxes will have to have an increase to support other people’s lifestyles. That is what should concern you. If I don’t have to pay extra for someone else’s child, I can have more of my money pay for my own child. It is not the responsibility of government to care for our children. That is absurd. Get a clue and take care of all taxpayers with reduced taxes so we can have more to spend here in the valley. This is the way you create more revenue. Which in turn would fund all of these special pet projects our elected officials seem to buy into. Re: Belief in the ResurrectionBob Branden’s local crusade against science and reason made me think of this quote from evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins:”Religious faith not only lacks evidence, its independence from evidence is its pride and joy, shouted from the rooftops. …One reason I receive the comment about science being a religion is because I believe in the fact of evolution. I even believe in it with passionate conviction. To some, this may superficially look like faith. But the evidence that makes me believe in evolution is not only overwhelmingly strong, it is freely available to anyone who takes the trouble to read up on it. Anyone can study the same evidence that I have and presumably come to the same conclusion. But if you have a belief that is based solely on faith, I can’t examine your reasons. You can retreat behind the private wall of faith where I can’t reach you.”Re: Letter from IsraelLarry Rich states “This is a war of blatant Islamic aggression against a nation whose only sin is to have been born Jewish,” but is that really all there is to this conflict? Did “blatant Islamic aggression” simply form in a vacuum? Israel is not blameless in this conflict, contrary to the doctrine of Israeli infallibility held by the extreme right. Israel has committed countless acts of aggression and brutality against the Palestinians since 1948. Israelis slaughtered Palestinians and took their land in the name of God. Hmmm, do you think that has anything at all to do with the mess we’re in today? And when you add to that the fact that the U.S. has propped up corrupt Islamic governments like Saudi Arabia in exchange for cheap oil, which naturally breeds anti-U.S. sentiment amongst the citizenry, and at the same time give billions of U.S. tax dollars to the Israelis to keep slaughtering Arabs, you realize that “blatant Islamic aggression” didn’t just come out of nowhere. This is not an excuse for terrorism. It’s just that I would no sooner forget the Holocaust that forget the fact that Israel is not completely without blame, and the sooner Israelis realize that, the sooner we will have peace. Re: flatlander: Babysitting Eagle CountyBreaking news: Intelligent life discovered on Planet Vail Daily! After years or belief that the Vail Daily was a vast wasteland of misinformation, non-intelligent thought and socialist editorial policy, an intelligent and conservative form of life has been discovered – Austin Richardson.Re: The partisan gamesDon Rogers, You’re right and you’re wrong. Like you, I, too, used to find partisan politics distasteful. But once I learned how other democracies work (or don’t), the realization dawned on me that two is the ideal number of political parties. Observe European politics and it’s obvious that having a bunch of parties only results in chaos and tentative bedfellows, and having just one party is a dictatorship.Also, for better or worse, these days virtually everything is politicized. Our county government and local newspaper are ultra liberal. Our county commissioners can’t dream up enough ways to spend other people’s money, and the majority of commentaries published by the Vail Daily are anti-Bush, anti-Republican, pro-Leftwingnut conspiracy theory nonsense. How about a reality check?You are correct, Don, in that “We simply need citizens to roll up their sleeves and take on those mundane challenges that actually affect our daily lives.” But that’s not what our politicians are currently doing! From Avon to Eagle, our elected officials are imposing ever more feel-good tax and spend liberal legislation, while neglecting their defined and limited duties. The Avon Town Council and our county commissioners repeatedly exceed their authority, and beyond publishing a few angry letters to the editor no one does anything to stop them. Several bobblehead readers even endorse increasing taxes to pay for this socialist crap, as if whatever our government provides is actually “free.” There is no free lunch. Someone has to pick up the tab.Re: Costs a cause of teacher turnoverNow this is what I call a typical low budget, non-professional article. There is not one quote in this piece from the trenches. I don’t see one whisper from a teacher that resigned and what they think. The Vail Daily is doing this valley a great disservice by not presenting this issue properly. The cost of living? You have got to be kidding. I can’t believe you have the audacity to have a headline like “Costs a cause of teacher turnover.” This is mickey mouse journalism. Once again, the Vail Daily has disappointed. Re: Belief in the Resurrection… It doesn’t matter what kind of label you put on them, the point is that some gospels were selected for inclusion and some weren’t, and the selections seem to have been made for political, partisan or arbitrary reasons, and decided by majority vote. A rather bizarre way to assemble the inspired, revealed word of God. And if anyone had witnessed the Resurrection, I’m sure it would have left a profound and lasting impression. But we have only the accounts in scripture to assure us that there was a resurrection and somebody witnessed it. Doesn’t seem like much to go on for such a fantastic story. …Re: Research is a valuable toolYou’re forgetting one thing. All of those gods all claimed to be more powerful and therefore above the likes of us humans. However, Jesus never claimed to be above or better than us, in fact he put himself below us for the sake of us. That’s kind of an important thing. For your “research,” try researching the Gospels. You’ll find a story about a god, i.e. God, humbling himself to come down to Earth in the form of Jesus and dying to be resurrected again for the sake of our sins. None of those of other gods died for we humans. Re: Government access station hits cable soon… Government access stations are nothing new, but for our illustrious Eagle County commissioners to take it upon themselves to create their own government owned and controlled television station is a boondoggle, especially when multiple local tv stations already exist. There is simply no reason for the county to run such a business!Re: Lamm takes on a tabooPolitical correctness will ultimately kill us.Vail, Colorado
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