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The Doctrine and Covenants and American Exceptionalism


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31 minutes ago, mrmarklin said:

Please enjoy your visit.  I've been there many times.  Bring Money.  It is the most expensive country in Europe.  You could not duplicate your current lifestyle in Switzerland making what you make now.🤨

However, your income there would be double that of the averages of neighboring countries, and professions earn living wages. The mentality of personal and public responsibility far exceeds that of the US. We lived there 3 years, and our favourite park had a sandbox with toys. Without fail, we always arrived at a tidy park. If you signal to merge in the worst traffic, you're still let in.  I delivered twins there, the chief of obstetrics gave me excellent care.

The Swiss are mindful stewards of the environment and preserving it for best use. High bridges are used to reduce highway noise and environmental disruption for small towns. Children as young as four are taught to walk the short way to school alone, but the paths are created to be clearly marked and safe for them. They learn to use saws and hammers in kindergarten and have school in the forest one day a week. My children's Swiss friends surprised me by preferring veggies to sweets at birthday parties, and were great fun in water balloon fights.

I could go on and on about the good stuff, not to say it's perfect though. There is noticeable xenophobia there, in our personal experience and observation. 

Edited by Meadowchik
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1 hour ago, AtlanticMike said:

Definitely our compassion. No matter what someone may think about the wars we've been part of around the world, or how we use our influence to sway nations, our people and military are some of the most compassionate people on earth. We're giving and willing to help just about anyone, anyway and anywhere. Have we had a violent past, no doubt, but we figured it out in a relatively short period compared to other nations. We have tried to bring freedom to women, homosexuals and the underprivileged around the world more than any other nation. In the past 100 years as a nation at war, we could of invaded and claimed dozens of countries, instead we try to liberate, then hand power back to the people of that country, sometimes it's a success, sometimes it's not. Be proud of America, be proud of what we've done to free people around the world. There's a reason caravans walk 1000s of miles to enter America, or brave shark infested waters on a dinky raft to make it here. Negative people can convince you of anything if you let them, be careful. Just because they're happy in their misery, doesn't mean you have to be.....................

Not everyone will agree with this view of the USA.  It is more hopeful and fanciful than factual.  A more realistic and cynical view was taken by Maj Gen Smedley Butler, the great Marine Corps hero, that the military-industrial complex actually runs America for its own interests.  Rather than a democracy, we have a corporatocracy of oligarchs (the same sort of people who run Russia today), which will be with us in perpetuity following the Citizens United decision of the U.S. Supreme Court.

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52 minutes ago, mrmarklin said:

I completely disagree with your conclusions.  I think that there are some great countries out there, but 20 million illegal immigrants (and more coming all the time) can't be wrong.😀

The reality is, that when the SHTF, the US is the magnet for all the world's scared money.  This has been true for over a hundred years now, and won't change in my lifetime. 

No other nation has the combination of geography, good people, good government, climates, economy, and etc. that we do.  That's just a fact.  

Well, maybe they've come to take back their country! Half kidding..

My son-in-law came over from Aguascalientes Mexico illegally right after high school with his father, brother and sister. My daughter and he met a few years after that, and they have been married for over 17 years, they have two sons.

My son-in-law hasn't seen his mother in person since that time, only on face-time. His father wasn't the best and they've disassociated from him, we've no idea where he is. I hope the new pathway for illegal immigrants that Biden wants to put forth will enable him to one day be able to visit his sweet mother. We've spent a few thousand on an immigration attorney but keep getting scared off that they'll keep him in Mexico where he has to go first before he can come back here, maybe now we'll feel good about continuing the journey with the legalization process. 

But you're right, America is known to be a land of dreams come true, and maybe other countries make it almost impossible because of the cost of living in those countries. So I guess I can have a renewed love for my country, thanks!

Edited by Tacenda
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4 hours ago, longview said:

You say the Constitution "enabled" slavery?  That is an overly dark perspective to be taking.  The 3/5 compromise was not to set a value for a slave but to reduce the power of slave states.  The Founders knew all colonies needed to join together in order for the American experiment to gain traction.

Enabled...as in permitted or allowed. Any way you put it, the 3/5 compromise was a compromise on human dignity and a large population in the colonies that had effectively no legal voice or say in the formation of the nation and what their lives would entail. Most born at that time would never taste freedom. Hoping something would just die out isn’t actively persuing a goal. And this post is a great example of what I mean by soft-pedaling the issues and contradiction/ struggles in US history in insisting on American exceptionalism and moreso the mythos around our country as opposed to the full story. On the rest, I’m tempted to just say “what calm said” on the rest. But I would just emphasize that what you quoted (which doesn’t have a link BTW) is an extremely cherry picked version of history. One that over focuses on exceptions and ignores impact on black communities in the US as well as in Africa. Which is what happens when one insists on a glowy version of history than a warts and all version. This version tends to gloss over generations of pain and struggle and honestly beautiful/sacred stories and cultures to be superseded by one narrative that’s heavily ethnocentric. 
 

to me it narrows rather than expands one’s understanding of God and how He touches humanity.
 

with luv, 

BD 

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2 hours ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Not everyone will agree with this view of the USA.  It is more hopeful and fanciful than factual.  A more realistic and cynical view was taken by Maj Gen Smedley Butler, the great Marine Corps hero, that the military-industrial complex actually runs America for its own interests.  Rather than a democracy, we have a corporatocracy of oligarchs (the same sort of people who run Russia today), which will be with us in perpetuity following the Citizens United decision of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Yes sir I understand not everyone will agree. I also understand I shouldn't talk about generals or admirals with a man who served his country in Force Recon, I'm no dummy😁, thank you again for your service. But I will leave you with a quote from Admiral McRaven. I was fortunate to meet him when I was I'm my 30s. I like his optimistic view.

20210119_184447.jpg

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9 hours ago, Rajah Manchou said:

 

Government unfortunately is not America’s strength. That should be pretty clear to anyone who has watched the news this last year. Edit: and I’m not singling out any one person or party, I’m talking about the whole enchilada. Just counting the number of wars and military conflicts we’ve been entangled in during my lifetime alone. Something is wrong about our political worldview.

You've put your finger right on it, Rajah.  Remember that Bicentennial address that Spenser W. Kimball gave, "The False Gods We Worship"?   I think his words still stand today.  

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12 minutes ago, Douglas Avans said:

Remember that Bicentennial address that Spenser W. Kimball gave, "The False Gods We Worship"?   I think his words still stand today.  

A sermon I've turned to many times!

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7 hours ago, longview said:

Are you saying that God should NOT be calling the Constitution a Heavenly Banner?  It is disturbing that you should have such a hostility to the Constitutional Republic!

I don’t presume to tell God what He can and cannot say. You shoving those words into God’s mouth. That is probably a little more dangerous.

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6 hours ago, Scott Lloyd said:

Why are you distorting my meaning? I didn’t say that the Stars and Stripes would necessarily be the flag of the Kingdom of God or even that there would necessarily be such a flag. 
 

It’s possible the United States would still exist then with its flag, as Brigham Young foretold. 
 

Or not. But I don’t think you know what the world will look like then any better than anybody else. 

Oh, but I do know better than most.

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5 hours ago, 2BizE said:

One of the big negatives of the church for members from outside the United States is how the church has embraced this American Ideology. American church members speak of how great America is and how all great things of the gospel must occur in America.  Non-Americans just roll their eyes.

As they should. Especially right now.

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2 hours ago, AtlanticMike said:

Yes sir I understand not everyone will agree. I also understand I shouldn't talk about generals or admirals with a man who served his country in Force Recon, I'm no dummy😁, thank you again for your service. But I will leave you with a quote from Admiral McRaven. I was fortunate to meet him when I was I'm my 30s. I like his optimistic view.

20210119_184447.jpg

The British had the same delusion. Their empire didn’t last.

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7 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

I don’t presume to tell God what He can and cannot say. You shoving those words into God’s mouth. That is probably a little more dangerous.

it's weird that "Heavenly Banner" isn't a scriptural term. If Americans use that term, we Canadians can say that the Canadian Charter or Rights and Freedoms is a "Celestial Ribbon"😇

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35 minutes ago, Douglas Avans said:

You've put your finger right on it, Rajah.  Remember that Bicentennial address that Spenser W. Kimball gave, "The False Gods We Worship"?   I think his words still stand today.  

His monkey and the box analogy does communicate well the though I've struggled to form the past few weeks. It sometimes feels like we're so attracted to the idea of America that we stubbornly refuse to let go of tradition. We're going bankrupt. We're literally fighting in the streets and storming the halls of government. Our two-party political system and electoral process has flaws. The Constitution requires a few updates. Treating it like some infallible stone tablet etched by the finger of God isn't going to carry us through to the Kingdom of God.

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25 minutes ago, Duncan said:

it's weird that "Heavenly Banner" isn't a scriptural term. If Americans use that term, we Canadians can say that the Canadian Charter or Rights and Freedoms is a "Celestial Ribbon"😇

The Magna Carta is an “exalted semaphore flag”

The Code of Hammurabi is a “transfigured pennant”

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27 minutes ago, Rajah Manchou said:

His monkey and the box analogy does communicate well the though I've struggled to form the past few weeks. It sometimes feels like we're so attracted to the idea of America that we stubbornly refuse to let go of tradition. We're going bankrupt. We're literally fighting in the streets and storming the halls of government. Our two-party political system and electoral process has flaws. The Constitution requires a few updates. Treating it like some infallible stone tablet etched by the finger of God isn't going to carry us through to the Kingdom of God.

The weird thing is the people who are the most outwardly patriotic seem to hate everything in America.

Good question.

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20 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

The weird thing is the people who are the most outwardly patriotic seem to hate everything in America.

Good question.

A caricature.

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6 hours ago, Meadowchik said:

However, your income there would be double that of the averages of neighboring countries, and professions earn living wages. The mentality of personal and public responsibility far exceeds that of the US. We lived there 3 years, and our favourite park had a sandbox with toys. Without fail, we always arrived at a tidy park. If you signal to merge in the worst traffic, you're still let in.  I delivered twins there, the chief of obstetrics gave me excellent care.

The Swiss are mindful stewards of the environment and preserving it for best use. High bridges are used to reduce highway noise and environmental disruption for small towns. Children as young as four are taught to walk the short way to school alone, but the paths are created to be clearly marked and safe for them. They learn to use saws and hammers in kindergarten and have school in the forest one day a week. My children's Swiss friends surprised me by preferring veggies to sweets at birthday parties, and were great fun in water balloon fights.

I could go on and on about the good stuff, not to say it's perfect though. There is noticeable xenophobia there, in our personal experience and observation. 

Switzerland is a great country.
But your statement that income there is twice that of Germany or even the EU is nonsense.  It’s marginally higher, and the cost of living easily eats up any difference.  Look it up. 
 

The Swiss are good stewards of what they have. There is a reason that many American cities are cesspools. I won’t get political by stating my opinion of why that is. 
But my statement as to living on a normal American income is still true. You would have a tougher time living on it in Switzerland. 

Edited by mrmarklin
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6 hours ago, Meadowchik said:

Sorry, but no. Your combination of parameters is arbitrary. It's just your opinion.

And my opinion is just as good as yours. 
What are your better parameters?

Edited by mrmarklin
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1 hour ago, Glenn101 said:

A caricature.

What aspects of America today, right now, do you love?

I'm not asking which decade was the best, or which American ideals, aspirations or concepts you love, but what is happening in the country right this moment that you hope other countries might emulate?

What about America today is exceptional?

Edited by Rajah Manchou
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29 minutes ago, Rajah Manchou said:
1 hour ago, Glenn101 said:

A caricature.

What aspects of America today, right now, do you love?

I'm not asking which decade was the best, or which American ideals, aspirations or concepts you love, but what is happening in the country right this moment that you hope other countries might emulate?

What about America today is exceptional?

 

24 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

After the last four years that is less a dismissal and more of an acknowledgement of where we are.

It was a caricature of conservative thought. I do not know any conservatives that match the description in that video. And that is one thing wrong with such dismissal. It does nothing to bring people together but is rather is a continuation of polarization efforts that are having deleterious effects on our society.

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10 minutes ago, Glenn101 said:

 

It was a caricature of conservative thought. I do not know any conservatives that match the description in that video. And that is one thing wrong with such dismissal. It does nothing to bring people together but is rather is a continuation of polarization efforts that are having deleterious effects on our society.

I know some that fit that perfectly. Some of them were in the Capitol.

I don’t think you realize that Americans in general aren’t interested in unity with fascists. I spent a lot of time in the last few weeks reading the ravings of minds addled by conservative media calling for violent action to make the President a dictator or king if necessary. Most are not going to act on it but some are. Clean your house of lies and the insane and the domestic terrorists and afterwards we can talk about unity. Until then calls for unity are facile excuses to pretend the monster in your midst doesn’t exist. 

I notice you didn’t answer the question either.

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6 hours ago, BlueDreams said:

Enabled...as in permitted or allowed. Any way you put it, the 3/5 compromise was a compromise on human dignity and a large population in the colonies that had effectively no legal voice or say in the formation of the nation and what their lives would entail. Most born at that time would never taste freedom. Hoping something would just die out isn’t actively persuing a goal. And this post is a great example of what I mean by soft-pedaling the issues and contradiction/ struggles in US history in insisting on American exceptionalism and moreso the mythos around our country as opposed to the full story. On the rest, I’m tempted to just say “what calm said” on the rest. But I would just emphasize that what you quoted (which doesn’t have a link BTW) is an extremely cherry picked version of history. One that over focuses on exceptions and ignores impact on black communities in the US as well as in Africa. Which is what happens when one insists on a glowy version of history than a warts and all version. This version tends to gloss over generations of pain and struggle and honestly beautiful/sacred stories and cultures to be superseded by one narrative that’s heavily ethnocentric. 
 

to me it narrows rather than expands one’s understanding of God and how He touches humanity.
 

with luv, 

BD 

I can’t add any more reactions today so I will just say “bravo” BD!

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