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ndebord
March 17th, 2006, 06:27 PM
Molly Ivins excerpt from "The Progressive."

http://www.tpmcafe.com/node/27902

"Mah fellow progressives, now is the time for all good men and women to come to the aid of the party. I donít know about you, but I have had it with the D.C. Democrats, had it with the DLC Democrats, had it with every calculating, equivocating, triangulating, straddling, hair-splitting son of a bitch up there, and that includes Hillary Rodham Clinton....

I canít see a damn soul in D.C. except Russ Feingold who is even worth considering for President. The rest of them seem to me so poisonously in hock to this system of legalized bribery they canít even see straight."

(C'mon Ralph and Earle...you gotta love her, just a little, for this quote!)

Judy G. Russell
March 17th, 2006, 08:02 PM
If we can change it to:

I donít know about you, but I have had it with the D.C. [types], ... had it with every calculating, equivocating, triangulating, straddling, hair-splitting son of a bitch up there, and that includes Hillary Rodham Clinton.... I canít see a damn soul in D.C. ... who is even worth considering for President. The rest of them seem to me so poisonously in hock to this system of legalized bribery they canít even see straight.
I'd certainly go along!

ndebord
March 17th, 2006, 09:15 PM
If we can change it to:


I'd certainly go along!

Judy,

But then you'd lose the partisan edge! Let the Republicans gore their own oxen, Molly has done good here.

<g>

Lindsey
March 17th, 2006, 10:32 PM
I canít see a damn soul in D.C. except Russ Feingold who is even worth considering for President. The rest of them seem to me so poisonously in hock to this system of legalized bribery they canít even see straight."
In hock to bribery, or in thrall to the political consultants, but in either case, I agree with the general disgust. Bad enough that only 2 other Senate Dems (Tom Harkin and Barbara Boxer) had the backbone to join Feingold's call for censure, but their cowardice is not even in deference to popular opinion, as the polls have nearly 50% of the entire electorate, and 70% of the Democratic grass roots, agreeing with Feingold.

And let it be noted that the supposedly far-left New York Times is in league with the Republicans and the equivocating, triangulating DLC Democrats on this one.

--Lindsey

Judy G. Russell
March 17th, 2006, 11:39 PM
I'm more of the "a pox on both your houses" type myself.

ktinkel
March 18th, 2006, 11:08 AM
Molly Ivins excerpt from "The Progressive."

"Mah fellow progressives, now is the time for all good men and women to come to the aid of the party. I donít know about you, but I have had it with the D.C. Democrats, had it with the DLC Democrats, had it with every calculating, equivocating, triangulating, straddling, hair-splitting son of a bitch up there, and that includes Hillary Rodham Clinton....Only problem: Molly Ivins has too much common sense to run. And perhaps has too much pleasure doing what she does so well ó she is a great gadfly!

ndebord
March 20th, 2006, 08:53 PM
Only problem: Molly Ivins has too much common sense to run. And perhaps has too much pleasure doing what she does so well ó she is a great gadfly!

Kathleen,

Gadfly is good. I've been one myself in a small way. But we definitely need someone good who can get elected. Or we need to split the union and let the red states win the "civil war" finally. I've had it with religious fundamentalists collaborating with right-wing fanatics and I seriously doubt whether anybody here knows as much about them as I do, what with 9 members of my immediate family being charter members of the reborn again Southern Baptist sect.

Lindsey
March 20th, 2006, 09:21 PM
what with 9 members of my immediate family being charter members of the reborn again Southern Baptist sect.
It's not the charter members who are the problem. It's the Johnny-come-latelys (of whom Dubya is one).

--Lindsey

ndebord
March 21st, 2006, 10:47 AM
It's not the charter members who are the problem. It's the Johnny-come-latelys (of whom Dubya is one).

--Lindsey

Lindsey,

Oh, I don't know about that. I sort of subscribe to that earlier phrase: "A plague on both their houses."

ktinkel
March 21st, 2006, 11:23 AM
I've had it with religious fundamentalists collaborating with right-wing fanatics and I seriously doubt whether anybody here knows as much about them as I do, what with 9 members of my immediate family being charter members of the reborn again Southern Baptist sect.Have you been following the studies based on birth rates among red and blue state residents? Sobering stuff.

Tamar Lewin (an old CIS-ite, btw) wrote about it in October in the NYTimes (http://www.nytimes.com/2005/10/13/national/13census.html?ex=1286856000&en=deedbb83130bfc25&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss) (you may need to register to read this). And there has been more recently, but I cannot find whatever it was I was reading the other day.

fhaber
March 21st, 2006, 07:57 PM
>whatever it was I was reading the other day.

NPR, perhaps? I think I heard something in my left ear the other day - another book on the topic?

They're outbreeding us, for sure.

ndebord
March 21st, 2006, 08:25 PM
Have you been following the studies based on birth rates among red and blue state residents? Sobering stuff.

Tamar Lewin (an old CIS-ite, btw) wrote about it in October in the NYTimes (http://www.nytimes.com/2005/10/13/national/13census.html?ex=1286856000&en=deedbb83130bfc25&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss) (you may need to register to read this). And there has been more recently, but I cannot find whatever it was I was reading the other day.

Kathleen,

I don't need no stinkin' statistics to tell me which way the wind is blowing. All I need do is look at my own family tree. One son and one grandson, Episcopalians converted to RC on account of the mother's family. My brother had 7 and now I have 13 grand nephews and nieces, all born again Southern Baptists, sans one, who is Church of God.

Need I say more?

Lindsey
March 22nd, 2006, 12:13 AM
Have you been following the studies based on birth rates among red and blue state residents? Sobering stuff.
Yeah, I've heard about those, but I honestly don't worry about them that much. You don't inherit religious afiliation, for one thing, and birth rates have a way levelling themselves out for another.

I'm more worried about the whole nature of debate in this country. So long as we remain a society open to free and unhindered inquiry and debate, we'll be fine. But if we let ourselves be intimidated out of that, that's when we're in trouble.

--Lindsey

ndebord
March 22nd, 2006, 01:20 AM
Yeah, I've heard about those, but I honestly don't worry about them that much. You don't inherit religious afiliation, for one thing, and birth rates have a way levelling themselves out for another.

I'm more worried about the whole nature of debate in this country. So long as we remain a society open to free and unhindered inquiry and debate, we'll be fine. But if we let ourselves be intimidated out of that, that's when we're in trouble.

--Lindsey

Lindsey,

You don't inherit religious affiliation, eh? What was that old Catholic saying. Something like "you give me a child for 5 years, and I'll give you a Catholic forever."

John F
March 22nd, 2006, 01:39 AM
Only problem: Molly Ivins has too much common sense to run. And perhaps has too much pleasure doing what she does so well ó she is a great gadfly!
My favourite Molly Ivins quote was when she was being interviewed on CBC (Canadian PBS) during the Clinton-Lewinsky affair. She said "I don't know how seems to you guys, it must be like living next door to the Simpsons".

John F

ktinkel
March 22nd, 2006, 10:50 AM
NPR, perhaps? I think I heard something in my left ear the other day - another book on the topic?

They're outbreeding us, for sure.Maybe it was NPR ó it comes at me subliminally as I wake up in the morning! But I think I was physically reading something ó maybe an essay in Washington Monthly or some other magazine!

Itís not just the U.S.; much of Europe has similar patterns.

ktinkel
March 22nd, 2006, 10:53 AM
You don't inherit religious affiliation, eh? What was that old Catholic saying. Something like "you give me a child for 5 years, and I'll give you a Catholic forever."I think it was 7 years, and I know it was the Jesuits.

Well, they had me, but it didnít take. Their relentless teaching of logic seems to have been their undoing! <g>

fhaber
March 22nd, 2006, 12:45 PM
>I think it was 7 years

They had me for one term. We didn't quite go critical, but believe me, some hard gamma rays were generated there. I count the discipline I learned as an asset, and having had the sense to get out as a greater one.

ktinkel
March 22nd, 2006, 07:28 PM
They had me for one term. We didn't quite go critical, but believe me, some hard gamma rays were generated there. I count the discipline I learned as an asset, and having had the sense to get out as a greater one.Amen! ;)

ndebord
March 22nd, 2006, 08:35 PM
I think it was 7 years, and I know it was the Jesuits.

Well, they had me, but it didnít take. Their relentless teaching of logic seems to have been their undoing! <g>

Kathleen,

The Jesuits, to their credit, do teach logic. They prefer to develop willing disciples who can think. The evangelicals, however, are 100% delusional and wrap their entire world view around faith-based religion. Sounds harmless enough, but it is not that at all. Fundamentalism destroyed the Spanish, Dutch and British empires and might well do us in as well.

Lindsey
March 22nd, 2006, 09:10 PM
Lindsey,

You don't inherit religious affiliation, eh? What was that old Catholic saying. Something like "you give me a child for 5 years, and I'll give you a Catholic forever."
I know too many people who have been raised Catholic who have turned their backs on the Catholic Church. Besides which: Catholics are not universally arch-conservative. You find them in progressive movements as well.

--Lindsey

Lindsey
March 22nd, 2006, 09:20 PM
My favourite Molly Ivins quote was when she was being interviewed on CBC (Canadian PBS) during the Clinton-Lewinsky affair. She said "I don't know how seems to you guys, it must be like living next door to the Simpsons".
LOL!! Molly Ivins is a national treasure!

--Lindsey

Lindsey
March 22nd, 2006, 09:23 PM
Fundamentalism destroyed the Spanish, Dutch and British empires and might well do us in as well.
The Dutch had an empire?

What did fundamentalism have to do with the decline of the British Empire?

--Lindsey

sidney
March 22nd, 2006, 11:03 PM
The Dutch had an empire?

What did fundamentalism have to do with the decline of the British Empire?

Wikipedia entry for Dutch Colonial Empire (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutch_colonial_empire)

I don't see what fundamentalism had to with the decline, though. Unless one could claim that colonialism is fundamentally flawed :)

-- sidney

Lindsey
March 22nd, 2006, 11:17 PM
Wikipedia entry for Dutch Colonial Empire (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutch_colonial_empire)
Ah - thanks. I knew the Dutch had colonies, I just never knew they were considered an empire. And apparently I'm not the only one not to have thought to apply that term, because that same Wikipedia article said:

Usage of the term "empire" in relation to all of the overseas activities of the Dutch is debatable, because many of the colonies were in fact trading posts governed by two independent trade companies, the Dutch East India Company and Dutch West India Company. Only after 1815, when the British returned the colonies to the Dutch after occupation during the Napoleonic War, did the kingdom (and from 1848 onwards, the parliament) take charge of the administration of the colonies. Until recent[ly] Dutch historians were quite hesitant to use the words 'imperialism' and 'Empire'. Nowadays they use it, but mainly to refer to it in a more European aspect and most of the time only when looking at the period 1880-1940. In 1968, a Dutch historian wrote for an English audience and said: "Dutch colonial policy was never dominated by visions of establishing a Dutch empire in Asia.", S. L. van der Wal in: Bromley and Kossmann (1968)

I don't see what fundamentalism had to with the decline, though. Unless one could claim that colonialism is fundamentally flawed :)

Hah! Sidney, you are wicked!

--Lindsey

Judy G. Russell
March 23rd, 2006, 12:30 PM
I don't see what fundamentalism had to with the decline, though. Unless one could claim that colonialism is fundamentally flawed :) ROFL!!! Don't DO that while I'm drinking coffee!!!

ndebord
March 24th, 2006, 05:52 AM
Wikipedia entry for Dutch Colonial Empire (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutch_colonial_empire)

I don't see what fundamentalism had to with the decline, though. Unless one could claim that colonialism is fundamentally flawed :)

-- sidney

Sidney,

Of course you can see what effect it had, particularly on the Brits. From an earlier, more pragmatic view of Empire to the later days when late Victorian and early Edwardian England was rife with religiosity. Evangelical fervor, missionary zeal, an end-of-times anticipation and biblical prophecy were all traits of the later days of the British Empire. How did it hurt the Empire? In the schools where the upper and upper-middle class focused not on the industrial might of England, but on Empire itself. Somewhere around the 1840s, schooling itself was reformed by Thomas Arnold with a focus on Christian Altruism and sports for the upper classes. Some would call it a modern day prefectorial system. Meanwhile the Germans and Americans were handing the Brits their lunch in industry.

ndebord
March 24th, 2006, 10:04 AM
Wikipedia entry for Dutch Colonial Empire (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dutch_colonial_empire)

I don't see what fundamentalism had to with the decline, though. Unless one could claim that colonialism is fundamentally flawed :)

-- sidney


Sidney,

The Dutch empire, was in part an invention of Calvinism and the new idea of investing money in corporations in the hope of turning a profit. This was the base for modern capitalism and the Dutch were the first to apply capital investments to overseas trade. VOC and the Dutch government worked hand in hand to create a Dutch Empire. They tossed the Spanish and Portuguese out of the East Indies and Africa. (They stopped the English when they tried to get into the East Indies after which the English settled for India.)

From 1585 to 1740, the Dutch were dominant in world trade. You can argue that the VOC, not the Dutch government was the main instrument of colonization, but since the VOC ran its own army, it was both a trading corporation and an instrument of government policy.

Fundamentalism in the form of Calvinism as interpreted by the Dutch in the Dutch Reform Church was a key element in this process. The doctrine of the church was used to support one of the major profit centers of the VOC: slavery. In the Canons of Dort you find "...it was the will of God that Christ by the blood of the cross, whereby he confirmed the new covenant, should effectually redeem out of every people, tribe, nation, and language all those, and those only, who ere from eternity chosen to salvation..." This was interpreted by Dutch Jurists, such as Hugo Grotisu (1583-1645) to justify the slave trade. He recognized voluntary sale in order to escape famine and starvation and capture in a just war (bellum iustum) as justification for the business.

The VOC eventually collapsed into bankruptcy and was under attack by the same church that had supported its most profitable enterprise (slavery) in its later years, but it survived for 2 centuries during which the Dutch ran a large empire from Asia to Africa.

Wikipedia has its uses, but it is limited imo.

sidney
March 24th, 2006, 01:51 PM
QUOTE=ndebord]Fundamentalism in the form of Calvinism as interpreted by the Dutch in the Dutch Reform Church was a key element in this process[/QUOTE]

That sounds like fundamentalism was part of the rise of colonialism, not its decline. Didn't you say in the earlier post that Fundamentalism caused the deline of the empires?

-- sidney

ndebord
March 24th, 2006, 04:11 PM
QUOTE=ndebord]Fundamentalism in the form of Calvinism as interpreted by the Dutch in the Dutch Reform Church was a key element in this process

That sounds like fundamentalism was part of the rise of colonialism, not its decline. Didn't you say in the earlier post that Fundamentalism caused the deline of the empires?

-- sidney[/QUOTE]

Sidney,

Fundamentalism in the Dutch Reform Church first supported expansion and slavery and later turned against it. Did that solely cause the collapse of the Dutch Empire? No, it was one factor among many, as was the case with Great Britain.

As for GB, I think I've already made my case regarding the later stages of empire. Don't see any fundamentalism in the beginning stages of the British Empire.

Lindsey
March 24th, 2006, 09:43 PM
Somewhere around the 1840s, schooling itself was reformed by Thomas Arnold with a focus on Christian Altruism and sports for the upper classes.
Say what? Altruism is evil, greed is good???? There's a lot of greed among American fundamentalists. (Or is it evangelicals? They always get terribly prickly when you call them by the wrong term, but they don't bother to try to explain the difference.) Does that mean that American fundamentalists are good for America?

--Lindsey

ndebord
March 26th, 2006, 08:30 AM
Say what? Altruism is evil, greed is good???? There's a lot of greed among American fundamentalists. (Or is it evangelicals? They always get terribly prickly when you call them by the wrong term, but they don't bother to try to explain the difference.) Does that mean that American fundamentalists are good for America?

--Lindsey

Lindsey,

The phrase is just a phrase. It is its effect on society that was the key point for me.

Think of how the religious fundamentalists of our day have reallocated our resources to fit Christian beliefs. The industry of our time is belittled. Scientific Method is considered to be a handmaiden of Darwin and shunned. Somebody recently said that only 4% of our children go to school for a B.S. or for a degree in engineering. After WWII, returning veterans filled the engineering programs across the country. So too did the Brits misalllocate their resources back then.

ndebord
March 26th, 2006, 07:17 PM
QUOTE=ndebord]Fundamentalism in the form of Calvinism as interpreted by the Dutch in the Dutch Reform Church was a key element in this process

That sounds like fundamentalism was part of the rise of colonialism, not its decline. Didn't you say in the earlier post that Fundamentalism caused the deline of the empires?

-- sidney[/QUOTE]

Sidney,

What with my family history, just chock full of fundamentalists, I've been preoccupied with this topic for some time now and I've got to admit that it has been impossibile for me to personally make a dent into any of my relatives religosity world view.

In that vein, I've read just about everything I can get my hands on that deals with fundamentalism, past, present or future. One current book seems worthwhile right now and that would be Kevin Phillips "American Theocracy" which may help everyone understand where we are on this slippery slope moving from a secular society to a relgious one.

ktinkel
March 26th, 2006, 07:42 PM
I've read just about everything I can get my hands on that deals with fundamentalism, past, present or future. One current book seems worthwhile right now and that would be Kevin Phillips "American Theocracy" which may help everyone understand where we are on this slippery slope moving from a secular society to a relgious one.Not sure that American Irish Catholics are exactly fundamentalists, yet my aunts bragged about voting for John Kennedy because he was an Irish Catholic.

When I married my lovely Jewish husband, one of those aunts of mine sent him a card saying he was being prayed for every month by the Jesuits. Can you imagine? (Jack, fortunately, has a great sense of humor, and he displayed the card ó which implied he was protected by Jesuits ó whenever he could, even only semi-plausibly.)

A friend of Jackís mother said once that she was very glad that I was marrying Jack because it meant there was Ēone less shicksa to go after my Michael.Ē (No matter that a few months later my sister took up with her son Michael!)

And then a woman I worked with reported that her parents were sitting shiva because their son was marrying an Italian woman. They would henceforward declare their son (an only child) was dead to them because he chose to marry outside his faith.

What dreck!

Lindsey
March 26th, 2006, 11:07 PM
The phrase is just a phrase. It is its effect on society that was the key point for me.
"Just a phrase?" Does that mean you weren't making a serious argument?

Think of how the religious fundamentalists of our day
That wasn't the question I thought we were discussing. The question was how did fundamentalism cause the decline of the British Empire. And I still don't understand how you figure that.

--Lindsey

earler
March 27th, 2006, 04:02 PM
Fundamentalism played absolutely no role in the decline of the british empire. In fact, fundamentalism played its role there during the 17th century, before the rise of empire.

-er

ndebord
March 27th, 2006, 07:47 PM
Fundamentalism played absolutely no role in the decline of the british empire. In fact, fundamentalism played its role there during the 17th century, before the rise of empire.

-er

Earle,

That's funny, an absolute declaration on the topic of evangelical fundamentalism. You are quite wrong when you say that fundamentalism or evangelicalism or whatever name you care to give to excessive religiosity had no effect on the decline of GB. Let me give you an example. Remember that Matthew Arnold fellow, who revamped the English curriculum while headmaster at Rugby in 1840? He said: "...rather than have it [science] the principal thing in my son's mind, I would gladly have him think that the sun went around the earth and that the stars were so many spangles set in the bright blue firmament. Surely the one thing needed for a Christian and Englishman to study is a Christian and moral and political philosophy." [Cornelli Barnett, "Collapse of British Power", p.25]

Read some of the diatribes by member of Parliament during WWI when the Pols started to wonder why the Germans had done so well with technology in the art of war and the Brits so badly. The stuff of scandal at the time.

The point I am trying to make is not that religion by and of itself was the stuff of decline and fall, but that it was an important element in the fall.

Lindsey
March 27th, 2006, 09:58 PM
Remember that Matthew Arnold fellow, who revamped the English curriculum while headmaster at Rugby in 1840?
Ummm -- Matthew Arnold was the opposite of a fundamentalist:

Sometime during his adolescence, Matthew Arnold abandoned Christianity, apparently on ethical grounds and with little of the spiritual agonies Carlyle and Ruskin experienced, and turned to agnosticism. He thereafter spent a good bit of his life trying to tell others about it in a gentle, gentlemanly way that would not upset them too much.

. . . Fundamentally a social conservative, Matthew Arnold nonetheless pushed his devout father's Christian liberalism to the breaking point. Whereas the father had allowed that some scriptural language had to be understood as metaphorical rather than as simple-mindedly literal, the son went farther and held, finally, that the Bible is all metaphorical, recording essential human hopes and aspirations rather than historical events. (my emphasis)

http://www.victorianweb.org/authors/arnold/delaura3.html

Besides which, Arnold died 25 years before the First World War. And so far as I know, was never headmaster at Rugby, much less in 1840 -- he didn't graduate from Balliol until 1844. You have confused him with his father, who was headmaster at Rugby from 1827 until his death in 1842, during which tenure he introduced the study of mathematics, modern languages, and modern history. In his day, Thomas Arnold was considered a liberal. http://www.bartleby.com/65/ar/Arnold-T.html

--Lindsey

earler
March 28th, 2006, 05:48 AM
Lindsey has given a good reply. I don't know where you got that particular book, but it is dead wrong. The empire's decline was precipitated by the enormous cost of ww1 and the rise of nationalism throuighout the world, combined with the rise of the usa as the world power and the awakening of japan in the far east.

In fact, it was the unshackeling of the sciences that helped the empire to grow. For example, william smith, the father of geology, was able to demonstrate that the earth wasn't founded a few thousand years before christ, but billions of years before. Smith was born in 1769 and showed the importance of fossils in documenting the earth's history.

Puritanism in its extreme versions was among a minority of the english, those who left for the low countries, then crossed the ocean to found a colony in 1620 in the new world. Fundamentalism was never significant in england though adherence to the biblical version of history was mandated throughout the country, as well in all other christian countries until the 19th century, finally fully discredited with the publication of darwin's book.

-er

ndebord
March 30th, 2006, 04:16 PM
Ummm -- Matthew Arnold was the opposite of a fundamentalist:

Besides which, Arnold died 25 years before the First World War. And so far as I know, was never headmaster at Rugby, much less in 1840 -- he didn't graduate from Balliol until 1844. You have confused him with his father, who was headmaster at Rugby from 1827 until his death in 1842, during which tenure he introduced the study of mathematics, modern languages, and modern history. In his day, Thomas Arnold was considered a liberal. http://www.bartleby.com/65/ar/Arnold-T.html

--Lindsey

My mistake. Wrong Arnold. I was taling about the father not the son.

http://www.victorianweb.org/authors/arnold/bio.html

"His appointment to the headship of Rugby, a famous public school, after some years as a tutor, turned the school's fortunes around, and his force of character and religious zeal enabled him to turn it into a model followed by the other public schools, exercising an unprecedented influence on the educational system of the country."

http://www.rugbyschool.net/history/dr_arnold.htm

Arnold was appointed as Head Master of Rugby in 1828. He used two means in particular in order to impose his philosophy on the school: one was the prefect system; the other was the Sunday sermon. It was from the pulpit, in the chapel, that Arnold announced his intention of making the school a place of Christian education. "What we must look for here is, first, religious and moral principle, secondly, gentlemanly conduct, thirdly, intellectual ability."

He tried to arouse a sense of Christian duty in every boy. He believed strongly in the unity of Church and State and tried to achieve this in miniature at Rugby.

Again contrary to popular opinion, Arnold did little to modernize the curriculum or teaching methods. In principle, he approved of widening the curriculum to include science, for example, but in practice was loath to abandon any subject providing moral lessons or opportunity for reflection on historical development; so Classics retained over 50% of curriculum time.

Let me put it to you from a historian of note. R.C.K. Ensor wrote in "England 1870-1914" that "No one will ever understand Victorian England who does not appreciate that among highly civilized countries...it ws one of the most religious that the world has ever known. Moreover its particular type of Christianity laid a peculiarly direct emphasis on conduct. [It] became after Queen Victoria's marriage practically the religion of the court and gripped all ranks and conditions of society."

The ruling elite of the nation became, not engineers or scientists, but gentlemen preoccupied with gentlemanly conduct, sportsmanship, moral principles, religion, the classics and the philosophy of Locke and Blackstone. This had (I hate to use the phrase) a trickle down effect on the other classes. There were many reasons why the British Empire fell, this is one of them.

earler
March 30th, 2006, 05:45 PM
You really should read the history of that period. The empire rose because of well-trained civil servants and military. Its decline had nothing to do with the aristocracy. Bear in mind that few people attended university in those days. While the likes of locke and others had influence, it was among intellectuals, not among those governing india and the colonies.

-er

Lindsey
March 30th, 2006, 09:58 PM
My mistake. Wrong Arnold. I was taling about the father not the son.
And as I said, in his day, Thomas Arnold was considered a liberal.

Are you arguing that religion is a bad thing? That it should be rooted out of the culture completely? I don't understand why it's a problem if a culture emphasizes sportsmanship, duty, gentlemanly conduct, and adherence to principle. Those sound like desirable things to me, but maybe you would say that I've been brainwashed because my parents took me to church when I was growing up.

The ruling elite of the nation became, not engineers or scientists, but gentlemen preoccupied with gentlemanly conduct, sportsmanship, moral principles, religion, the classics and the philosophy of Locke and Blackstone.
You're overlooking that quite a number of those gentlemanly elites took up science as their hobby -- Charles Darwin for one. There were some outstanding British scientists and mathematicians in the 19th century: Besides Darwin, there was Michael Faraday, James Clerk Maxwell, Joseph Fourier, John Tyndall, Thomas Henry Huxley, John Herschel, J.P. Joule, Lord Kelvin, Herbert Spencer, Charles Babbage, William Kingdon Clifford, Richard Owen, John Snow, William Budd, Joseph Lister, Richard Bright, Thomas Addison, Thomas Hodgkin, and James Parkinson.

I think you're also overlooking the fact that the Germans lost both world wars.

I'm with Earle on this one. I see the rise of nationalism and the terrible toll taken by the First World War as the major reasons for the decline of the British Empire. Not to mention that that is the natural fate of all empires (something the US would do well to bear in mind). I don't see that any of the other European empires of the 19th century managed to outlast Britain's.

--Lindsey