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Jon Hunstman Drank Alcohol In China?


scooby

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I wouldn't normally discuss an individual's personal relationship with the Church, but this is Jon Hunstman, and it's the press that's raising the issue. From the Atlantic Wire:

http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2011/06/jon-huntsman-will-drink-peace/39240/

Talking to his associates from his time in China . . . They'll tell you Huntsman truly does view his role as one of duty and service to the nation -- even to the point of setting aside his Mormon religious views on drinking alcohol to drink the disgusting baijiu liquor which is mandatory at Chinese events (I'm told Huntsman would drink the clear alcohol once and then switch to water, hoping no one noticed after the first round).

They call baijiu "disgusting" because it has a higher alcohol content than whiskey. Some say it tastes like rubbing alcohol. (edit: by the way, never drink rubbing alcohol, it can kill you)

Did Hunstman make the right choice to drink baijiu for the sake of our country?

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Did Hunstman make the right choice to drink baijiu for the sake of our country?

Nope. It just tells me that he is willing to please the world over God. Would I not vote for him on this? No. There are other reasons I would not vote for him. Carry on.

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Does Huntsman admit it? Or is this just political propaganda aimed at possible threats to a second term to the current lame duck? (Many question authority... for the same reason I always question sources in media reports!)

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Did Hunstman make the right choice to drink baijiu for the sake of our country?

Jon Huntsman has already explained that he's no longer active LDS--and I think most of us know many 'less-actives' and so it's no surprise that he would be drinking socially.

For the 'sake of our country' is a polite excuse made for him. I don't see how drinking alcohol helps the country. Pres. Ezra Taft Benson was able to serve our country just fine without ever having to drink alcohol. If it was a necessity, it would be part of the job description. Never heard that it was.

I don't think President Bush was forced to drink alcohol during the eight years he was President--for the sake of our country :wacko: ? I remember hearing that he did not drink because he'd developed a drinking problem when he was younger.

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Huntsman did say "its complicated".

Yea he did, but really--it's not complicated. It's very simple. Jon Huntsman falls within the percentage of members on the rolls who are no longer active. I feel very sad for his believing family members and this has got to be upsetting to see him publicly admit his 'less-active' state. But I'm not surprised since I believe he's gambling that this information will help his electability.

When he was running for Governor of Utah, it would have cost votes--but on a national level where there is prejudice against LDS, he thinks revealing this information will help him.

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If true, it's consistent with Huntsman distancing himself from the Church.

...and yet this morning, there is a "correction" with regard to an earlier report (which was discussed on an ealier thread) that the Huntsman's are raising their adopted daughter, Asha, in the Hindu faith. My link (the correction can be found at the bottom of the article.) My guess is that the "distancing" strategy is proving difficult to communicate accurately, presicely because the Huntsman's are all still quite "Mormon."

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Well, trying to switch to after after the one drink does mean something positive for me though I'd prefer the Chinese be made respect his "custom" of not drinking alcohol. On the flip side, I think Romney has also committed sins against the LDS faith with former policy positions. I don't know much about Hunstman, but I's wager he has too.

It's policy positions and record I'm most concerned about in a candidate though religion can play a major role in me knowing about a candidate's decision making process. For example, I'd never vote for a Muslim if I could possibly help it because Islam is diametrically opposed to the Church and Democracy in general on so many levels. If I knew the candidate was an "apostate" Muslim, that would help. If I had to choose between two Mormon candidates, if one were a "jack" Mormon, that would be a strike against. But policy positions and record could overcome that even if the other candidate was an active Mormon. I judge "TBMness" by positions, beliefs, and record so it's possible a jack Mormon could certainly be more TBM than an active Church-going Mormon in my book.

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Well, trying to switch to after after the one drink does mean something positive for me though I'd prefer the Chinese be made respect his "custom" of not drinking alcohol. On the flip side, I think Romney has also committed sins against the LDS faith with former policy positions. I don't know much about Hunstman, but I's wager he has too.

It's policy positions and record I'm most concerned about in a candidate though religion can play a major role in me knowing about a candidate's decision making process. For example, I'd never vote for a Muslim if I could possibly help it because Islam is diametrically opposed to the Church and Democracy in general on so many levels. If I knew the candidate was an "apostate" Muslim, that would help. If I had to choose between two Mormon candidates, if one were a "jack" Mormon, that would be a strike against. But policy positions and record could overcome that even if the other candidate was an active Mormon. I judge "TBMness" by positions, beliefs, and record so it's possible a jack Mormon could certainly be more TBM than an active Church-going Mormon in my book.

I question some of the reporting. I think that comment from the article about it being 'mandatory' is opinion (another excuse for Huntsman) and is insulting to the Chinese. I would expect that because the Chinese are a gracious people, they would never wish to disrespect a person's religious convictions by forcing them to drink alcohol if it was against their faith. I also expect that any wise political representative would not continue to drink a strong alcoholic beverage and risk being tipsy, but would switch to water so they could keep their wits. They are still on duty.

I don't have a problem with voting for a person who is Muslim. If they share my political views and are known for their integrity, I would vote for them.

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I would think the Chinese would have respected them more if he stated his beliefs and stuck to them.

As I mentioned above, I will give the benefit of the doubt to the Chinese. Asian cultures are known to be gracious hosts, not boorish and backwater. I am quite sure that Huntsman could have had his staff explain to the Chinese staff that Mr. Huntsman, because of his religious convictions does not drink alcohol. Arrangements would have been made. If they could not have replaced the alcohol with water for the ceremony, then they probably would have chosen to do something else, but I think it's a stretch in this day and age to think it was "mandatory". Do Muslims NEVER visit with Chinese leaders? They don't drink alcohol either, because it is against their faith.

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I wouldn't normally discuss an individual's personal relationship with the Church, but this is Jon Hunstman, and it's the press that's raising the issue. From the Atlantic Wire:

They call baijiu "disgusting" because it has a higher alcohol content than whiskey. Some say it tastes like rubbing alcohol. (edit: by the way, never drink rubbing alcohol, it can kill you)

Did Hunstman make the right choice to drink baijiu for the sake of our country?

Who would drink rubbing alcohol? It doesn't smell like there woiuld be any flavor at all. We have some that is 70%...almost all alcohol? 140 proof. Wow. Most whiskeys are only 80 to 90 proof. I tasted this Austrian rum a few weeks ago that was 150 proof. But it had strong notes of vanilla...nothing like how rubbing alcohol smells. About a thimble. Pretty stiff stuff. Of course most of us don't just gulp that kind of drink straight like water. I have never heard of Jon Huntsman, but if he can swill 140 proof alcohol like water, he sounds like a good man to me and my kind of President, Mormon or not!

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BCSpace:

It doesn't seem to be a problem for Congressman Keith Ellison or his constituents.

Turkey is an active democracy. Being Islam isn't a problem for them.

Not quite. One reason Turkey has remained secular is because of the secular military keeping it that way, and laws that forbade many religious acts, nor could religious parties exist. So it hasn't been quite as actively democratic as some would think.

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When Nixon was in China and they served it, my father, who was there said that everyone in the group would allow the drink to touch their lips in salute and custom. There were hundreds and hundreds of people in the hall and this was done for quite some time.

Whether Huntsman drank or not is between he and the Lord.

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I question some of the reporting. I think that comment from the article about it being 'mandatory' is opinion (another excuse for Huntsman) and is insulting to the Chinese. I would expect that because the Chinese are a gracious people, they would never wish to disrespect a person's religious convictions by forcing them to drink alcohol if it was against their faith. I also expect that any wise political representative would not continue to drink a strong alcoholic beverage and risk being tipsy, but would switch to water so they could keep their wits. They are still on duty.

I don't have a problem with voting for a person who is Muslim. If they share my political views and are known for their integrity, I would vote for them.

Are you saying you are for or against Huntsman for President and why?

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For any interested, there was a pretty enjoyable article in Time last month on Huntsman. The article itself is political, but I think the below snippet is probably pertinent to the topic of this thread... sort of.

And as for whether or not Huntsman still belongs to the Church of Latter-day Saints, I know less than I did before I asked him. ("I'm a very spiritual person," as opposed to a religious one, he says, "and proud of my Mormon roots." Roots? That makes it sound as if you're not a member anymore. Are you? "That's tough to define," he says. "There are varying degrees. I come from a long line of saloon keepers and proselytizers, and I draw from both sides.")

Time Magazine, May 12, 2011

To me, he sounds like a guy that is following his heart the best he currently knows how, and trying to keep a tradition/identity/faith, that he holds dear, part of his life.

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I won't be voting for Huntsman, at least in the primaries, but not because of the reported lapses in his committment to church principles. I have voted for decades for candidates who did not adhere to church standards.

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Really? Last I knew the Chinese government did not have policies respectful towards religious freedoms.

Institutional DISrespect may be a matter of policy with respect to their citizens, HOWEVER, when the official representative of one of their biggest trading partners, and a potential enemy state at that says that he does not, as a matter of strong personal preference drink alcohol, coffee, tea, nor smoke, somehow I don't think they are going to get too snippy about his refusal to violate his principles. Would the ambassador from the Peoples Republic be expected to give deference to a prayer to a deity which might be offered in an event he has been invited to? Of course, regardless of whether he were an atheist. On the other hand, his hosts would be treading on offensive ground if they expected him to offer such a prayer.

And by "give deference" I mean maintaining a respectful silence, possibly lowering the head, during the prayer.

Huntsman did not need to give lip service to the consumption of alcohol.

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