You shall be made to bake! The Supreme Court takes up the gay wedding cake case.

Republicans hop back in bed with Judge Roy Moore. (So watch the hands, guys)

Hey, this FBI anti-Trump partisanship scandal story is starting to look like real news…

And why an atheist wants to see American evangelicals get back to Bible thumping.

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There are 13 comments.

  1. Thatcher

    I left my normal-to-cretin dictionary at home (the meeting with Marketing was cancelled), so I’ll use small words and simple concepts.

    One candidate may have done evil in the past.

    One candidate proposes to continue an ongoing evil into the future.

    Caught up yet?

    • #1
    • December 5, 2017 at 10:08 am
    • 2 likes
  2. Coolidge

    Percival (View Comment):
    I left my normal-to-cretin dictionary at home (the meeting with Marketing was cancelled), so I’ll use small words and simple concepts.

    One candidate may have done evil in the past.

    One candidate proposes to continue an ongoing evil into the future.

    Caught up yet?

    And one candidate is crazy anti Muslim, anti gay and has written a book where he says women should not be elected to public office. Plus he has used religion for political ends in the most blatant fashion and can be relied upon to act like a fool. It is up to the people of Alabama but after picking two completely unfit candidates in the primary … not much hope there. Another awful binary choice. It has to stop. And comments are supposed to be civil at Ricochet, so I’d appreciate it if you refrained from calling people cretins.

    • #2
    • December 5, 2017 at 10:24 am
    • 1 like
  3. Member

    And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. And they marvelled at him.—Mark 12:17

    We’re electing a politician to go to Washington, not electing him to Heaven.

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    Another awful binary choice.

    All of them are in our system, some are just more obviously so than others.

    Psalm 146:3-5
    (3) Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. (4) His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. (5) Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God:

    We may believe some politician to be of excellent character when we send them off to the city council or state capital or Washington, and a few surprise us by keeping their pants zipped and their noses clean. But most over time will find ways to let us down, because they are human. In sending Roy Moore to the Senate, we can only be pleasantly surprised if he doesn’t find a way to embarrass Alabama on any given day.

    • #3
    • December 5, 2017 at 2:33 pm
    • 2 likes
  4. Member

    Hey Michael – where’s this stuff about KFC?
    You mentioned it in yesterday’s and today’s intro.

    What’d I miss?

    • #4
    • December 5, 2017 at 2:49 pm
    • Like
  5. Member

    contrarian (View Comment):
    Hey Michael – where’s this stuff about KFC?

    https://ricochet.com/474459/trumps-crime-love-kremlin-kfc-fish-sandwich/

    • #5
    • December 5, 2017 at 2:53 pm
    • 1 like
  6. Member

    Seems you went down the same road about not voting for a bad candidate even if you think the opponent is worse – this time with an atheist. Well, I’m an atheist too, and I think you’re both making poor arguments. Incidentally, I don’t understand the John the Baptist reference. Is one of the former teens going to behead Moore?

    I’ve commented about this before, but I’ll give it another go. First, no one has made an argument that explains why voting for an unethical person is inherently unethical. If you voted for someone because he was unethical, then sure- that would be wrong. What about if you vote despite his being unethical? No one’s made a case for that.

    It’s a job. Hiring a roofer who is immoral in his personal life doesn’t make me unethical. Finally, what if both candidates have bad character. If the moral people refuse to vote, then in those cases we’re going to end up letting the immoral people decide for everyone else. What kind of wacky argument accepts that as the best outcome?

    Second, I just don’t understand your view about how if there’s a God, then He would want righteous people not to vote and you should have faith that somehow everything would turn out for the best. I know that there are things religious people believe that I will never see eye to eye on, and I try not to be disrespectful about them, but that strikes me as lunacy.

    One or the other of them will win. Why would God want his followers not to use their judgment about what outcome would produce the least harm? How is the best outcome achieved by your choosing not to act rather than acting to the minimze the harm done to your fellow man? Maybe we should become Christian Scientists and let God heal illness rather than use medicine while we’re at it.

    I do think there’s a valid argument that says you should not vote for people with poor character when the consequences aren’t great. Tha why supporting Clinton was dumb (since Gore’s politics were the same) ad dumping Conyers is smart (since he’s going to be replaced with a younger, abler, scandal-free clone of himself).

    The problem with using that argument against voting for Trump was that it may have been valid, but it wasn’t sound.The consequences were huge. What about Moore? I’m honestly not sure. I could argue either way. I wish people were discussing this question – what the likelihood of a significant vs insignificant effect of losing a Senate seat will be – but that isn’t what people are focusing on. It’s unfortunate.

    Here’s my bottom line:

    If losing the seat means that there’s a significant chance of losing the senatein ’18,

    then the stakes are profound and you shouldn’t chance it, but instead ‘elect & reject.’

    • #6
    • December 5, 2017 at 5:11 pm
    • 2 likes
  7. Member

    Contrarian, as someone who is religious, I am with you on about every point. Very well said. Thank you.

    • #7
    • December 5, 2017 at 5:27 pm
    • 2 likes
  8. Member

    Arahant (View Comment):
    Contrarian, as someone who is religious, I am with you on about every point. Very well said. Thank you.

    Thanks. If someone could convince me that we’ll keep the majority next year even if we lose Sessions’ seat, then I’d agree with Graham and Shapiro and the rest of the people saying that everyone is better off if Moore loses. I haven’t seen a strong argument for that. In fact, I’ve been seeing Democrats saying that this puts the Senate in play again.

    If Kennedy decides to retire in July 2019 and we’ve lost the Senate, in part because we gave up the Alabama seat, then we’ll have done the wrong thing by not electing Moore. Obviously, I’m not predicting that, but if someone wants to convince me that it’s immoral for someone to vote for Moore, then they need to convince me that being concerned about a scenario like that is unreasonable.

    Maybe someone could convince me, but I’m not seeing arguments addressing such concerns. I’ve seen arguments about character, tribalism, moral responsibility, and the decline in the quality of candidates and political discourse. Those arguments aren’t going to move me. I have well-formed views about all those topics and this Senate race hasn’t changed my thinking about any of them.

    Frankly, I find it a bit presumptuous when someone argues that you should change your mind about something because there’s something not properly thought through that is a matter of values. If people wanted to discuss what is likely or just possible in the Senate in the next few years – and how to assign probabilities to different outcomes, I’d be eager to hear arguments like that.

    • #8
    • December 5, 2017 at 7:59 pm
    • 1 like
  9. Coolidge

    contrarian (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):
    Contrarian, as someone who is religious, I am with you on about every point. Very well said. Thank you.

    Thanks. If someone could convince me that we’ll keep the majority next year even if we lose Sessions’ seat, then I’d agree with Graham and Shapiro and the rest of the people saying that everyone is better off if Moore loses. I haven’t seen a strong argument for that. In fact, I’ve been seeing Democrats saying that this puts the Senate in play again.

    If Kennedy decides to retire in July 2019 and we’ve lost the Senate, in part because we gave up the Alabama seat, then we’ll have done the wrong thing by not electing Moore. Obviously, I’m not predicting that, but if someone wants to convince me that it’s immoral for someone to vote for Moore, then they need to convince me that being concerned about a scenario like that is unreasonable.

    Maybe someone could convince me, but I’m not seeing arguments addressing such concerns. I’ve seen arguments about character, tribalism, moral responsibility, and the decline in the quality of candidates and political discourse. Those arguments aren’t going to move me. I have well-formed views about all those topics and this Senate race hasn’t changed my thinking about any of them.

    Frankly, I find it a bit presumptuous when someone argues that you should change your mind about something because there’s something not properly thought through that is a matter of values. If people wanted to discuss what is likely or just possible in the Senate in the next few years – and how to assign probabilities to different outcomes, I’d be eager to hear arguments like that.

    I think that electing Moore in 2017 makes it more likely that the Republicans will loose the Senate in the 2018 election. All Republican Senate candidates will be portrayed as accepting child molesting. This will be enough to swing some voters to the Democrats.

    • #9
    • December 5, 2017 at 9:28 pm
    • Like
  10. Member

    FredGoodhue (View Comment):
    I think that electing Moore in 2017 makes it more likely that the Republicans will loose the Senate in the 2018 election. All Republican Senate candidates will be portrayed as accepting child molesting.

    Not if the Senate refuses to seat him.

    • #10
    • December 5, 2017 at 9:31 pm
    • 1 like
  11. Coolidge

    Arahant (View Comment):

    FredGoodhue (View Comment):
    I think that electing Moore in 2017 makes it more likely that the Republicans will loose the Senate in the 2018 election. All Republican Senate candidates will be portrayed as accepting child molesting.

    Not if the Senate refuses to seat him.

    Like the host, I’m no lawyer, but can the Senate refuse to seat a man for actions he did well before he was a Senator? From what I’ve read, it’s not clear.

    • #11
    • December 5, 2017 at 11:01 pm
    • Like
  12. Member

    FredGoodhue (View Comment):
    Like the host, I’m no lawyer, but can the Senate refuse to seat a man for actions he did well before he was a Senator? From what I’ve read, it’s not clear.

    It has been a very long time, and it may have been the House, rather than the Senate, so different rules might apply, but with those caveats, I believe the body has full control of whom they allow in. It is not something that has been done often. They are usually very careful about this power, though. Also, it is not just these forty-year-old allegations. There are much more recent incidents in his political career that they could investigate and decide these preclude his being seated.

    At that point, the governor would have to appoint another interim, etc.

    • #12
    • December 5, 2017 at 11:52 pm
    • 1 like
  13. Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    FredGoodhue (View Comment):
    Like the host, I’m no lawyer, but can the Senate refuse to seat a man for actions he did well before he was a Senator? From what I’ve read, it’s not clear.

    It has been a very long time, and it may have been the House, rather than the Senate, so different rules might apply, but with those caveats, I believe the body has full control of whom they allow in.

    They can expel him too. I think that’s probably what they’ll end up doing because they can investigate the claims and then use the conclusion (assuming it indicates his accuser’s case is more convincing than his) as the justification for his expulsion. It then is less a case of merely nullifying the election result since there’d be a form of due process. Hopefully, a bipartisan investigation would have enough credibility to mollify Moore supporters who currently believe in a WaPo conspiracy.

    I genuinely see nothing wrong with this scenario – in spite of all the hand-wringing about voting for a disgusting person. I don’t want to sound unkind, but the emphasis on ‘keeping one’s hands clean’ when there’s an (IMHO) ethically acceptable alternative that’s far preferable just seems too precious by half.

    I don’t dismiss the pragmatic concern about the DEMs using Moore as a cudgel in ’18 campaigns, but:

    1. They can make a great show of their disapproval when ousting him so that no one can be uncertain what they think of him
    2. They will be responsible for kicking him out. DEMs alone couldn’t do it. Besides, the folks who sent him to Washington weren’t the GOP senators. If Moore wins, itllbe because of Alabama voters, who aren’t going to be on the ballot in 2018
    3. I am extremely loath to sacrifice anything in the hope that DEMs won’t label you. They shouldn’t have that power – and anyway it’s never worked. I can think of plenty of cases where they just smeared everybody despite attempts to distance and repair. I can’t think of anywhere they let it go.
    4. DEMs are going to label GOP candidates Nazis no matter what. White supremacist, misogynistic, viciously homophobic, nativist, theocratic money hungry fascists. How much more mileage can they really get from another slander? At some point, there must be diminishing returns.
    • #13
    • December 6, 2017 at 3:35 pm
    • 1 like