Cults in our Midst

by Lee Elder 55 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Jehalapeno
    There is a little room for moderates in the Democratic party, and almost no room for moderates in the Republican party.

    That is a gross and naive misrepresentation. Trump is not a moderate, at least on the surface. The policies he’s put forth, though, have been somewhat moderate. However, the only moderates in real life that I know are republican or are starting to lean republican.

    My views are best represented by the libertarian left. But there’s no representation in the Democratic Party for any kind of fiscal libertarianism. Now, the republicans are starting to adopt a more laissez faire position to social issues.

    I can have a rational discussion with conservatives about gay rights and my stance on adopting a less interventionist military policy.

    However, no one that is on the left in my circle of friends can have a rational discussion about Trump’s tax bill, strict immigration enforcement, or gun rights.

    Every conservative friend I have supports the rights of gays to get married. Some of them are even atheist.

    No Democrat friend I have supports an artists right to turn down a custom job that offends his conscience when that artist happens to be Christian and White.

    I find conservatives more open to discussing ideas and less likely to take offense if you have a different point of view.

    You really need to sit down and try to have a friendly chat with a republican, Lee.

  • freemindfade

    Leftism is a dangerous ideology. I don't consider it to be liberal or progressive. Its an intolerant arrogant movement that history has taught us has a bad ending.

    Anyone ever hear of O'Sullivan's law?

    O’Sullivan’s Law

    O’Sullivan’s Law states that any organization or enterprise that is not expressly right wing will become left wing over time. The law is named after British journalist John O’Sullivan.

    Television shows are the best examples of this. 24, House. Charitable foundations are worse but harder to see.

    One of the reasons for this is leftist intolerance versus right-wing tolerance. Right wingers are willing to hire openly left-wing employees in the interest of fairness. Left-wingers, utterly intolerant, will not allow a non-Liberal near them, and will harass them at every opportunity. The result over time is that conservative enterprises are infiltrated by leftists but leftist enterprises remain the same or get worse.

    Also, leftism is in and of itself a form of decay. It’s what happens not just to television shows but to nations, churches and universities as the energy given off by the big bang of their inception slowly ebbs away. Rather than expend vitality in originality and creation they become obsessed with introspection, popularity and lethargy. Leftism is entropy of the spirit and intellect.

  • never a jw
    never a jw

    Let's review, we are surrounded by cults. Scientology, JW's, Amway, far left, Trump cult, Ayn Rand devotees, etc etc. And of course, members of a cult will never admit they are in one.

    Full disclosure, I just joined a good cult, I think, Sam Harris podcast loyal listeners. I invite you to join.

  • never a jw
    never a jw

    Freeminfade:"One of the reasons for this is leftist intolerance versus right-wing tolerance. Right wingers are willing to hire openly left-wing employees in the interest of fairness. Left-wingers, utterly intolerant, will not allow a non-Liberal near them, and will harass them at every opportunity. The result over time is that conservative enterprises are infiltrated by leftists but leftist enterprises remain the same or get worse."

    You my friend definitely are delusional with your self righteousness, paranoia and black and white view of the world. You went from Watchtower to Trumptower

  • Lee Elder
    Lee Elder

    Some of you are so far over the edge, you can't recognize a moderate when you see one. There are a very moderates left in the Republican party like John McCain, John Kasich, Jeff Flake, and Bob Corker. Most are fleeing because the party is being taken over my right wing extremists who don't have a clue what it means to be a fiscal conservative.

    When you see someone like Steve Schmidt, a longtime Republican strategist and adviser to Bush and McCain renounce his membership calling the party "corrupt, indecent and immoral", there is a very serious problem in my view.

    Incidentally, I have many Republican friends. My next door neighbor is one of my closest friends and is Republican. We are fiscally conservative, and socially liberal. We also enjoy Scotch! We're both quite concerned about what is happening. Oh, and he voted for Trump, but now regrets it, though he would not have voted for Hillary.

    There is a level of dysfunction with Trump and his administration that is unprecedented, and rivals the Cretans on the Governing Body of JW's.

    Good article in the NY Times on Steve Schmidt:

  • blownaway

    Cults are every where. From Greenpeace to the Mormons. Its very interesting to view some videos of small cults.

  • Bungi Bill
    Bungi Bill

    The more extreme forms of political ideology can and do inspire a level of fanaticism which rivals the worst of the religious forms. (Numerous examples of this were observed in Malaysia’s 12 year battle against the communists, during what was known as the “Malayan Emergency”).

    Not surprisingly perhaps, traces of this same “all or nothing” mentality are often observable even after a person abandons a cult. Speaking for myself, it took some time for the realisation to sink in that things are seldom ever clearly black and white. Instead, you are much more likely to be dealing with various shades of grey. This is particularly the case with politics - where a healthy dose of cynicism is a bloody good place to start from!

  • scratchme1010

    Interesting thoughts.

    Cults exist in many diverse parts of society. This includes politics.

    This sentences in your original post caught my attention. I know a few experts in the matter of cults. In fact, I'm spending my 4th of July weekend attending a conference on the topic. The experts I know, many agree that using cult as a label doesn't quite help educate the public about these groups (or effect). They provide a very interesting perspective regarding terminology, and they prefer to refer to them as "harmful groups", "high-demand groups", or "controlling groups".

    Using those terms removes the religious tone that cults tend to have, so many other groups and relationships are included in their definition of a cults. It also help people who are hurting because of he negative effects of such groups, learn to take care of themselves and not fall in the hands of yet another similar (or worse) group or situation.

    The experts I know run support groups, and the ones who attend come from a wealth of different groups, coming from every walk of life, politics, religion, there was eve a man who was in a Karate-related cult.

    With that in mind, using cult as a label instead of treating seeing that there's an effect on people that certain things bring to them, doesn't paint a clear, complete picture. That's why sometimes it's difficult for some people to understand that agreeing with Donald Trump and believing in him is not necessarily cultic (cultish?) behavior.

    Something else that I find relevant is that the experts themselves do not keep lists, nor do they name any specific groups as "cults". The reasons for that are two (1) there might be legal implications and (2) they concentrate in the effects of those groups, which is what I believe people should be talking about, not in the groups themselves.

    Additionally, they list a few characteristics of high-demand, harmful, controlling groups:

    1. Lack of accountability
    2. Intense emotion and dissociative practices
    3. Attitude of superiority and isolation
    4. Lack of training
    5. Manifestations of "groupthink" with dissent not tolerated especially in the "inner circle"
    6. Intolerance of individual expressions of differences as well as commonalities
    7. Lack of transparency, no open communication
    8. Unhealthy conflict resolution

    Keeping those things in mind, and looking at things from that point of view, I think it's a waste of time to talk about specific people, political parties, the liberal/conservative crap, or even the JWs, unless we are looking at the negative effects of what any of them can have on people.

  • never a jw
    never a jw

    When I came to the U.S. (30 years ago) and try to learn English by watching TV my favorite shows were "Cheers" and "This week with David Brinkley", and with Sam Donaldson, George Will, and Cookie Roberts. I found George Will (the Republican) always the wiser person and I am happy today to see that he quit the Republican party and is Trumps biggest critic. At least someone can see that the Republicans in the far right have turned the party into a dangerous cult.

  • slimboyfat

    Don’t know if Trump and supporters are cult, but they do lack common sense and moral sense, to support a man who lies compulsively and has confessed to crimes, including assaulting women and obstruction of justice, so far without conviction.

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