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A New Kind of Christian (McLaren)


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Hey, I'm so glad you enjoyed McLaren's book. I hesitate to apply this term, but I think I could call this book life-changing. Before reading it, I had only read a little about postmodernism in the context of a philosophy of science, but I had not consciously reflected on how Christendom is so captive to modern ways of thinking and being.

Despite how much I love the book, I now hesitate a bit in recommending it. I pushed for my small group to read and discuss it together -- a couple of folks seem to appreciate it, one guy (a newer Christian) doesn't understand the point of it, and our group leader (who is of a more conservative bent) is deeply troubled by it. It's made for some lively discussions anyway. What's kind of cool is that a number of teens are borrowing it from our church library - this and the books on dating seem to be most popular with that particular demographic. smile.gif

I'm now midway through NKOC's sequel, The Story We Find Ourselves In. It's just as engrossing, or very nearly so, with emphases on creation/evolution and the Bible as transcending fact and myth. I also think this book could be very appealing for a rational or scientifically-minded seeker who has been turned off by anti-intellectual fundamentalism -- the Bible narrative is presented through much of the first half, in a very winsome dialogue form.

Please let me know if you decide to visit McLaren's home church. I'd be curious to learn what a 'new kind of church' looks like.

To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

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Hmm, well, Dever went in expecting to dislike the book, and that's how he came out. No big shock there.

I was surprised by the semi-rational vehemence of his response - I wonder if some of his bile stems from the proximity of his and McLaren's churches?

To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

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I went back and read Devers' review a second time, just to make sure I hadn't missed his point. If anything, I was struck even more by the review's smugness (and even mean-spiritness?), masking itself as humility. Case in point: the final 2 sentences, where he writes, "I trust that both the author and the reviewer can sleep well at night knowing that the church of Christ can survive both bad books and bad reviews. Perhaps in this case it will have to survive both." Come on! -- if he'd really thought his review was bad, he wouldn't have submitted it.

What's especially ironic is that Devers seems to agree with McLaren even when he's putting him down. For instance, Devers relates that the Bible writings are revolutionary only in a conservative way -- isn't this pretty much what McLaren is saying through Neo, when he states that we need to exist on a plane above tidy modern categorizations?

To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

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Andrew you hit the nail on the head with Dever.

I have attended his church a few times and have some problems with his personality. Many times I wonder if it is just me and the fact that he is a huge John Piper fan and I don't like John Piper. . .but his personality does tend to be on the smugness side.

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  • 1 month later...

As I figuratively remove my foot from my mouth, please accept my apology if I offended you, Alan. Obviously, people can come across very differently in print (or online, as I sometimes fear for myself!) than they are in real life. As with the Michael Moore thread, I react a bit defensively to criticism of McLaren, since his works have really moved me and challenged my thinking in what I believe are positive ways.

To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

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I am a huge fan of Brian Mclaren.

I started reading "Finding Faith" a couple years ago and I was about halfway through it when I had to buy one for a nonchristian friend.

He talks and acts and writes in a way that is always thinking of the nonchristian. I wanna be like that.

"I am quietly judging you" - Magnolia

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Funny thing - I had 2 totally different reactions to reading Mclaren's response to his critics and looking at the website for his church. Personally, I wasn't familiar with Mclaren before I clicked on this topic. I definitely want to read New Kind of Christian, as it sounds like its right up my alley, on the other hand my gag reflex was in full force when I looked at the website for Cedar Ridge Community church (as I live somewhat close, and was thinking about checking it out).

Their theology appears sound, so I guess I'm dealing with a personal preference issue here (so please forgive me if you attend Cedar Ridge or a similar church). I am a 28 yr. old post-modern thinker (I guess that would make me post-evangelical?), however for some reason when a church describes itself as "user-friendly", and they advertise contemporary music, drama and/or multimedia on Sundays, I am immediately turned off. I don't want that to come across in a harsh manner, I realize that people desire different worship experiences, I might just be old-fashioned (or part of a dying breed).

That being said, I am still drawn to Mclaren and his school of thought, and I am definitely going to check out his books.

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To those who have read the book (i have not, but am thankful for the thread and am going to read the reviews of the book once i finish this post) can i get advice? I am part of a group that meets monthly to discuss evangelism that takes the culture and the individual into account. We just finished The Celtic Way of Evangelism and are now going to begin A New Kind of Christian. My husband and I are leading the discussion on the first few chapters. I suppose i'm interested in hearing what y'all see as pros and cons to McLaren's approach.

thanks!

O guiding night! O night more lovely than the dawn!--John of the Cross
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Hi Chris:

As is obvious from my posts, I'm very appreciative of McLaren's work -- having personally found that much of traditional evangelicalism didn't resonate with a thoughtful 21st Century worldview, I found McLaren's cognitive and experiential framework to be very useful.

OTOH, not everyone is so enamored with McLaren's challenges. When our small group attempted to study it, we made it about halfway through before bailing out. While about half of us found it useful and thought-provoking, one person (newer to the faith, more fundie-inclined) didn't understand why a new way of thinking about the faith could be useful, while another (an older, rather dyed-in-the-wool conservative) seemed to find it rather threatening.

Based on our experience, this may be a book better suited to believers who are somewhat seasoned in their faith yet ready to think about evangelical tradition in new ways.

I'll be eager to hear about your experiences, Chris. BTW, I'm almost finished with McLaren's and Campolo's Adventures in Missing the Point -- another dynamite book!

To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

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  • 5 months later...

I am currently in the seventh chapter of this book. My wife is in chapter 9 and we have been in a state of continual aggression over who gets to keep control over the book itself! smile.gif

I have an extremely full plate right now. I dream of doing three things: 1. seeing a good film (what's new?), i haven't been able to see one yet this month, 2. posting here. MAn i love this place, and you people are what makes this place so special, and 3. Finishing A New Kind of Christian. I have never been so engaged. I will probably sign off and go read a chapter before bed later tonight!

McLaren was in Chicago for an Up/Rooted meeting last month. The only reason i went is because i really love Up/Rooted, i didn't even know who McLaren was. He spoke that night mainly on the Three Phases of Spiritual Formation: Purgation, Illumination, Theosis. That night, much like the night Asher and i and our wives saw Brennan Manning in Oak Brook,

i will forever remember as a milestone night for my thirsting spirit. I had to get my hands on one of his books.

A New Kind of Christian so perfectly speaks to exactly what its title says. It's a brilliant read,

i can't wait to finish it. It's the kind of book i'd like to memorize and fully live by.

It's time folks. It's time for a change. I don't know when who how where or what, but the world needs a new kind of Christian. And i want to be transformed to be a new kind of Christian, too.

Fantastic stuff.

-s.

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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It's neat to hear that, Stef. NKOC has felt like a milestone book for me, too. I find McLaren to be a great synthesizer and presenter of ideas in a down-to-earth manner. I'd love to visit his church sometime, and see how a congregation attempts to live out these concepts.

To be an artist is never to avert one's eyes.
- Akira Kurosawa

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/secularcinephile/

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stef wrote:

: He spoke that night mainly on the Three Phases of Spiritual Formation:

: Purgation, Illumination, Theosis.

First time I can recall hearing a non-Orthodox talk about "Theosis". Weird. Yet another example of how post-modernists borrow-and-sample, mix-and-match elements of older traditions into a pastiche that suits them, I wonder? Or is there something more to this?

: And i want to be transformed to be a new kind of Christian, too.

Some people, with a greater attachment to Holy Tradition and the writings of the Fathers, would say we need to be transformed into an OLD kind of Christian. smile.gif

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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First time I can recall hearing a non-Orthodox talk about "Theosis". Weird. Yet another example of how post-modernists borrow-and-sample, mix-and-match elements of older traditions into a pastiche that suits them, I wonder? Or is there something more to this?

I think there's a bit more to it than just mixing and matching elements together to better suit one's own spirituality. These are all new concepts to me, so bear with me as a stumble around a little bit, but --

The largest gaping hole in the modernist approach to Christianity is its disregard for history. In reinventing itself and becoming something new it left behind elements that perhaps shouldn't have been tossed aside so quickly. Liturgy is the perfect example. I have had no experience with liturgy in the past, except for the rare visit to another church, usually Catholic. My understanding of it until recently was that it was used only out of a tradition that

Edited by stef

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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Have you ever prayed with someone that you just wished would shut up?

Have I??! laugh.gif

McLaren

"Could we ever know each other in the slightest without the arts?"

« Nous connaîtrions-nous seulement un peu nous-mêmes, sans les arts? »

Quoted on Canada's $20 bill; from Gabrielle Roy's novel La montagne secrète. The English translation, The Hidden Mountain, is by Harry L. Binsse.

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stef wrote:

: The largest gaping hole in the modernist approach to Christianity is its

: disregard for history. In reinventing itself and becoming something new it

: left behind elements that perhaps shouldn't have been tossed aside so

: quickly.

So is becoming yet ANOTHER kind of "new" Christian the answer?

: Liturgy is the perfect example. I have had no experience with liturgy in

: the past, except for the rare visit to another church, usually Catholic. My

: understanding of it until recently was that it was used only out of a

: tradition that’s been handed down. I think the negative spin that was

: tacked onto my evangelical understanding of it was that the tradition was

: old school, beaten up, stringent, etc.

As one who attended a few youth groups that sang the same dozen songs over and over again, I cannot help but find this anti-liturgical argument a little silly. smile.gif

: However, seeing it reemerge in various circles lately has really

: awakened me to the power or . . . prayer that has had an enormous

: amount of thought put into it and uses language itself in a powerful way.

: . . . Not to mention the fact that you can trust it. Have you ever prayed

: with someone that you just wished would shut up?

Or sung in a service where the music was forced to follow the whims of whoever happened to be holding the guitar that night?

: McLaren’s views on Theosis, or Divinization (via unitiva) is that the light

: of God comes into someone so much that they begin to glow like God.

Even literally, supposedly, if you believe the stories about e.g. St. Seraphim. Or Moses and the transfigured Christ, for that matter, I guess.

: But the area we have been sorely lacking (and especially you Peter are

: going to love this) is in social justice.

Hey, I've got nothing against "social justice", so long as it isn't just a cover for leftist politics and naive economics, etc. And boy, don't phrases like "a global minimum wage" sound like airy-fairy pie-in-the-sky you-say-I'm-a-dreamer-but-I'm-not-the-only-one modernism to YOU?

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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So is becoming yet ANOTHER kind of "new" Christian the answer?

Maybe "different" is a better word for you then. Semantics.

:Have you ever prayed

: with someone that you just wished would shut up?

Or sung in a service where the music was forced to follow the whims of whoever happened to be holding the guitar that night?

HEh. Well somebody's got to lead so it might as well be a guy with a guitar. But i can feel your pain. There are times that i wish i could just shut up! Especially if i'm leading and i look out at the congregation and think to myself, "There's a disconnect happening here. These people are just waiting for the kickoff." (that woud be a fall thought, btw.)

The hardest thing as a worship leader is to be all things to all people. I've got the kid operating power point wearing a Slipknot t-shirt to people in their 70s that have been life-long Christians. Style has splintered its shards into so many clicks of people that one cannot possibly be all things to all people. It's a very tough job. But i hope i'm not just having a "whim" when i lead, whatever that is! :)

don't phrases like "a global minimum wage" sound like airy-fairy pie-in-the-sky you-say-I'm-a-dreamer-but-I'm-not-the-only-one modernism to YOU?

Well, maybe. I guess i'm thinking more about it in a personal way though. If i'm a Christian and i own a company that's hiring workers in Asia or Mexico for 14 cents an hour, it doesn't take politics to tell me that i'm doing something immoral. But if i'm a Christian and i work for a company that's doing this, in essence am i not aiding an immoral act?

I don't know what the answers are, but i like the kind of thinking that's going into the questions. And i'd never heard the phrase "global minimum wage" before so it stuck with me as something to chew on. Should we start a new thread?

-s.

Edited by stef

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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First time I can recall hearing a non-Orthodox talk about "Theosis". Weird. Yet another example of how post-modernists borrow-and-sample, mix-and-match elements of older traditions into a pastiche that suits them, I wonder? Or is there something more to this?

There is. At the same time that Emergent is growing and the Ekklesia Project is growing and post-evangelicalism is growing, a quiet yet persistent little voice known as "radical orthodoxy" has been consistently firm in the wind of change.

Radical orthodoxy borrows quite a bit from the east, from the Orthodox with a capital "o." There are a lot of affinities between the ecclesiologies of a Brian McLaren version of the post-evangelical and the academics that populate radical orthodoxy. So a lot of the focus on Orthodoxy with a capital "o" migrates into the thought of McLaren and others.

There is not so much of a mixing-and-matching going on. It is more that McLaren is attracted to the focus of Orthodoxy on spiritual formation, as it has been articulated by Radical Orthodoxy.

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

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stef wrote:

: Well somebody's got to lead . . .

Oh?

: If i'm a Christian and i own a company that's hiring workers in Asia or

: Mexico for 14 cents an hour, it doesn't take politics to tell me that i'm

: doing something immoral.

Why? If you are giving them a better wage than most other employers in that part of the world, in what way is your wage "immoral"?

(M)Leary wrote:

: Radical orthodoxy borrows quite a bit from the east, from the Orthodox

: with a capital "o." There are a lot of affinities between the ecclesiologies

: of a Brian McLaren version of the post-evangelical and the academics

: that populate radical orthodoxy. So a lot of the focus on Orthodoxy with

: a capital "o" migrates into the thought of McLaren and others.

Interesting. Is this the 21st century's answer to the 19th century's Oxford movement -- but with an Orthodox tinge instead of a Catholic tinge? (And will this result in some people going all the way and converting to Orthodoxy, as whatshisface Newman did to Catholicism?)

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Andrew wrote:

: What is your evidence that these companies are actually paying a better

: wage, or are you merely parrotting conservative propaganda?

Well, to quote the New York Times article I linked to at our earlier thread on sweatshops:

Mongkol looked up, puzzled. "It's good pay," he said. "I hope she can keep that job. There's all this talk about factories closing now, and she said there are rumors that her factory might close. I hope that doesn't happen. I don't know what she would do then."

He was not, of course, indifferent to his daughter's suffering; he simply had a different perspective from ours -- not only when it came to food but also when it came to what constituted desirable work.

Nothing captures the difference in mind-set between East and West more than attitudes toward sweatshops. Nike and other American companies have been hammered in the Western press over the last decade for producing shoes, toys and other products in grim little factories with dismal conditions. Protests against sweatshops and the dark forces of globalization that they seem to represent have become common at meetings of the World Bank and the World Trade Organization and, this month, at a World Economic Forum in Australia, livening up the scene for Olympic athletes arriving for the competition. Yet sweatshops that seem brutal from the vantage point of an American sitting in his living room can appear tantalizing to a Thai laborer getting by on beetles.

I ran this article by a friend of mine who was a missionary in Thailand for several years, and he said the article was pretty much accurate. And no, I have no reason to believe that my missionary friend is particularly "conservative".

: And even if it's a marginally better wage, are said workers able to better

: their lives substantially (e.g., better housing, health care, education for

: their children) or are they essentially just as impoverished as before?

What do you mean by "substantially"? Do you mean, are these workers living at American levels of comfort? Oh, probably not, but give it time. To quote that article again:

The truth is, those grim factories in Dongguan and the rest of southern China contributed to a remarkable explosion of wealth. In the years since our first conversations there, we've returned many times to Dongguan and the surrounding towns and seen the transformation. Wages have risen from about $50 a month to $250 a month or more today. Factory conditions have improved as businesses have scrambled to attract and keep the best laborers. A private housing market has emerged, and video arcades and computer schools have opened to cater to workers with rising incomes. A hint of a middle class has appeared -- as has China's closest thing to a Western-style independent newspaper, Southern Weekend.

[ snip ]

For all the misery they can engender, sweatshops at least offer a precarious escape from the poverty that is the developing world's greatest problem. Over the past 50 years, countries like India resisted foreign exploitation, while countries that started at a similar economic level -- like Taiwan and South Korea -- accepted sweatshops as the price of development. Today there can be no doubt about which approach worked better. Taiwan and South Korea are modern countries with low rates of infant mortality and high levels of education; in contrast, every year 3.1 million Indian children die before the age of 5, mostly from diseases of poverty like diarrhea.

: What are the associated conditions that those workers are expected to

: work under - for instance, is it a salutary environment; are only adults

: being employed; is there a right of association; etc.

Varies from place to place, I'm sure. But again, to quote that article:

This is not to praise sweatshops. Some managers are brutal in the way they house workers in firetraps, expose children to dangerous chemicals, deny bathroom breaks, demand sexual favors, force people to work double shifts or dismiss anyone who tries to organize a union. Agitation for improved safety conditions can be helpful, just as it was in 19th-century Europe. But Asian workers would be aghast at the idea of American consumers boycotting certain toys or clothing in protest. The simplest way to help the poorest Asians would be to buy more from sweatshops, not less.

: - Are the companies making the region and country a better place to live

: in, or are they despoiling the water and land, while coddling up to

: unsavory leaders?

Irrelevant. We were discussing wages, not environmental effects (though the article quoted above gets into that, too). Indeed, the increased costs of managing any given sweatshop's effect on the environment would, itself, make it more difficult to increase the wages for those who work in that sweatshop. And indeed, one of the whole points of imposing American-style environmental standards and union-level wages on these overseas places of employment is to drive them out of business (and to deprive foreign workers of jobs) so that the American working class can continue to live in relative luxury. Now THAT'S moral!

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Well, maybe. I guess i'm thinking more about it in a personal way though. If i'm a Christian and i own a company that's hiring workers in Asia or Mexico for 14 cents an hour, it doesn't take politics to tell me that i'm doing something immoral. But if i'm a Christian and i work for a company that's doing this, in essence am i not aiding an immoral act?

This is not in itself an immoral act. Money means different things in different economies. It also means different things in different markets and in different frames of reference, regardless of markets. First a question, why do I struggle to tithe and set savings aside when I make quite a multiple of the minimum wage and my wife works at almost twice my hourly rate with all the overtime she wants, while the famous illegal alien makes below minimum wage here and sends money back to his family (I guarantee you as someone who has had a job off the books, deductions will be taken out of that worker's pay, regardless of his employer's intention to report the job....)?

Why, because a dollar means something entirely different in the country from which this worker hails and goes WAY farther there than here, irrespective of exchange rates. Further, what we consider here a minimum existence is in some cases not even possible in this worker's country; this internet hookup, the telephone lines, this computer, my car(s) and their insurance, and on and on. Life is not quite impossible as we conceive it without some of this and this conversation is DEFINITELY impossible without these minimum services not a burden to this other very poor family.

Which is why, with a global minum wage you and I would be crazy not to run to another country and take advantage. We would be flush with cash at a fraction of what we make now, for a short period of time. The whole thing would probably crash because those in power would not be prepared with the infrastructure, or the volume of money suddenly spiking the system. The latter causing hyperinflation and the former anger in the workforce. We'd have to leave with our "winnings" or be killed for it. But it would be a good ride while it lasted. In the meantime, in the U. S. the products made by workers in other countries would go radically up in price and we would be hard pressed to buy much that we take for granted for a while as our economy adjusted. There would be less investment capital to startup some of thse industries that went to other shores precisely because such disposable income would no longer be disposable. And of course, the inevitable delay to markets that "startup" implies. I don't think that would be a moral answer at all.

"During the contest trial, the Coleman team presented evidence of a further 6500 absentees that it felt deserved to be included under the process that had produced the prior 933 [submitted by Franken, rk]. The three judges finally defined what constituted a 'legal' absentee ballot. Countable ballots, for instance, had to contain the signature of the voter, complete registration information, and proper witness credentials.

But the panel only applied the standards going forward, severely reducing the universe of additional basentees the Coleman team could hope to have included. In the end, the three judges allowed about 350 additional absentees to be counted. The panel also did nothing about the hundreds, possibly thousands, of absentees that have already been legally included, yet are now 'illegal' according to the panel's own ex-post definition."

The Wall Street Journal editorial, April 18, 2009 concerning the Franken Coleman decision in the Minnesota U.S. Senate race of 2008.

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If things get out of hand, of course there's another protocol for this, but it is important to deal with some of this here while still dealing with other aspects of the pomo question. As long as pomo movements within the Church accept uncritically, or unformed propositions and a prioris having nothing directly to do with the propagation of the Faith and "spiritual formation", it will be a divisive force even among those disposed to its POV. The assumptions pomo THEOLOGIANS, SOCIOLOGISTS, and PHILOSOPHERS accidently or intentionally drag to the table far afield of their own specialties are not necessarily moral assumptions by declaration or association.

In response to your 2nd comment, Peter:

- What is your evidence that these companies are actually paying a better wage, or are you merely parrotting conservative propaganda? And even if it's a marginally better wage, are said workers able to better their lives substantially (e.g., better housing, health care, education for their children) or are they essentially just as impoverished as before?

- What are the associated conditions that those workers are expected to work under - for instance, is it a salutary environment; are only adults being employed; is there a right of association; etc.

- Are the companies making the region and country a better place to live in, or are they despoiling the water and land, while coddling up to unsavory leaders?

These questions can only reasonably apply to an economy equipped to handle the infrastructure that you demand. You are superimposing the values and standards of this most advanced culture in the history of the world on other cultures and leadership that does not comprehend, let alone have the necessary intellectual and economic wealth to even try to address your demands. Do we forget that it took four hindred years AND an economically gifted and literate populace to get to this point in history?

Twenty five years ago, Zimbabwe was a continental economic collosus. Look at it today. We have the legal and intellectual wealth (I mean only people's heads) to keep things from going just that way. They don't. If you just want to dump wealth on the Third World and hope it sticks, we've been doing that for decades and look where we are. If you want to command them to be like us in markets and economy, go ahead, but we've tried that too and I'm sure that is morally distasteful to you as well. We couldn't command India to do a d*** thing since independence. On their own they threw over that infernal "cottage economy" that Ghandi insisted on and are now emerging, finally, as an economic force to be

reckoned with. They aren't there yet. They will be. Ironically, those helpdesk jobs there use American products from hardware, to software, to snacks and refreshments. We sell them that stuff because they can finally afford it.

"During the contest trial, the Coleman team presented evidence of a further 6500 absentees that it felt deserved to be included under the process that had produced the prior 933 [submitted by Franken, rk]. The three judges finally defined what constituted a 'legal' absentee ballot. Countable ballots, for instance, had to contain the signature of the voter, complete registration information, and proper witness credentials.

But the panel only applied the standards going forward, severely reducing the universe of additional basentees the Coleman team could hope to have included. In the end, the three judges allowed about 350 additional absentees to be counted. The panel also did nothing about the hundreds, possibly thousands, of absentees that have already been legally included, yet are now 'illegal' according to the panel's own ex-post definition."

The Wall Street Journal editorial, April 18, 2009 concerning the Franken Coleman decision in the Minnesota U.S. Senate race of 2008.

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