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Author Topic: Dutch Euro-Deputy Proposes Lifting the Special Status of Mt. Athos  (Read 8545 times) Average Rating: 0
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plutonas
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« on: January 16, 2003, 01:55:38 PM »

PASCHALIDIS: RESPECT MOUNT ATHOS

Macedonia-Thrace Minister Giorgos
Paschalidis commented on the proposals made on the occasion of a resolution
submitted by a Dutch Euro-deputy requesting the lifting of the special
status of the monastic community in Mount Athos according to which, women
are not allowed to visit its grounds
.

Mr. Paschalidis stated that Mount Athos is a place of prayer, has its own
rules, and its own map constitutionally consolidated both in Greece and at
an EU level. The Macedonia-Thrace Minister stated that a thousand year old
tradition, and the wish of the people to choose their own way of life, residence and communication through
prayer must be respected.
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« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2003, 02:29:25 PM »

This is why Greece should have never joined the EU!  The Eurocrats have no respect for tradition, especially Christian tradition.  Instead, they are more interested in the secular humanist PC agenda. They serve and worship at that agenda. Angry Angry Angry
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« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2003, 07:40:09 PM »


I wholeheartedly agree.  But the EU is not only a threat towards religion.  It's also a threat against national identity.
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« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2003, 08:40:33 PM »

Well, here you have what the supporters of the One World Government are doing, integration, free-trade and supression of identity. They want to supress Mount Athos because it is important to the Orthodox identity, and this doesn't with the indifferentist and pluralist character of the EU, based on the principles of the French Revolution.
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« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2003, 09:29:51 PM »

Does anyone know where I can find the article that discusses this matter?
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« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2003, 12:10:09 AM »

Ok let's be rational here.  Free trade is supported by 99.9% of economists as the best way for two nations to grow economically.  I will be happy to cite books that you can read on the subject.  I got my degree in political science with a concentration in international relations.  That doesn't mean I remember it all though!

The EU could be a good and Christian thing.  One world government isn't necessarily a bad thing.  Nationalism is NOT a good thing.  The idea of a nation is what did in the Byzantine Empire and kept the Orthodox separate under the Turks.

Any governmental system can be good or bad.  The EU could be a Christian organization.  Just because it is run by socialists it is not inherently evil.  I don't like the current EU policy but it could change.  If Turkey joins the EU that will be good cuz then the eurocrats can push the T people around in the human rights area!

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plutonas
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« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2003, 01:15:26 AM »

Quote
The EU could be a good and Christian thing.

The EU is based on secular Western values that are in direct opposition with Christianity, and especially to Orthodoxy, for the precise reason that the religion remains true to tradition.  The European Union will never evolve into a Christian organization, and even if it did, what makes you think it would evolve into an Orthodox Christian organization?

Quote
One world government isn't necessarily a bad thing. Nationalism is NOT a good thing.

A one world government is indeed a bad thing, a very bad thing -- and precisely why the Orthodox Church opposes it so adamantly.  The results of a "one world government" are best demonstrated by "melting pot" multi-cultural societies like the United States where people from all over the world live together (as they would if a one world government ruled the world).  Everywhere you look you see cultureless, irreligious, and nihilistic people with no purpose or sense of direction in their lives except, of course, for indulging in hedonistic pleasures and securing wealth.  This degeneration of life is caused directly by the lack of a national identity or culture, which are essential to man.  In a one world government, this same thing would be lacking.  The only difference would be is that the entire world would be like this, instead of just America.

A much better articulation of the above is by Alain de Benoist:

"Man evolved in cooperating groups united by common cultural and genetic ties, and it is only in such a setting that the individual can feel truly free, and truly protected. Men cannot live happily alone and without values or any sense of identity: such a situation leads to nihilism, drug abuse, criminality and worse. With the spread of purely egotistic goals at the expense of the altruistic regard for family and nation, the individual begins to talk of his rights rather than his duties, for he no longer feels any sense of destiny, of belonging to and being a part of a greater and more enduring entity. He no longer rejoices in the secure belief that he shares in a heritage which it is part of his common duty to protect--he no longer feels that he has anything in common with those around him. In short, he feels lonely and oppressed. Since all values have become strictly personal, everything is now equal to everything; e.g., nothing equals nothing."

[Alain de Benoist, "Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft: A Sociological View of the Decay of Modern Society"]

Quote
The idea of a nation is what did in the Byzantine Empire and kept the Orthodox separate under the Turks.

There absolutely no historical evidence of any kind to support your theory that nationalism "did in" the Byzantine empire.  The empire fell directly because of the Turks and indirectly because of the sacking of Constantinople by the Catholic Crusaders in 1204, which weakened the empire, ensuring its eventual destruction.
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« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2003, 01:21:35 AM »

Adam Smith and David Ricardo, prophets of the anti-Christ?
I despise the EU as much as anyone, but don't bash free-trade!
If anything, the values that the EU stands for-statism, socialism and heavily regulated markets-are antithetical to the tenets of classical liberalism, the founders of which helped demolish the mercantilist orthodoxy of the 18th century.

ECONoman

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« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2003, 01:27:18 AM »


"The EU is based on secular Western values that are in direct opposition with Christianity, and especially to Orthodoxy, for the precise reason that the religion remains true to tradition.  The European Union will never evolve into a Christian organization, and even if it did, what makes you think it would evolve into an Orthodox Christian organization?"

Nothing like religious chauvinism, heh?

"A one world government is indeed a bad thing, a very bad thing -- and precisely why the Orthodox Church opposes it so adamantly.  The results of a "one world government" are best demonstrated by "melting pot" multi-cultural societies like the United States where people from all over the world live together (as they would if a one world government ruled the world).  Everywhere you look you see cultureless, irreligious, and nihilistic people with no purpose or sense of direction in their lives except, of course, for indulging in hedonistic pleasures and securing wealth.  This degeneration of life is caused directly by the lack of a national identity or culture, which are essential to man.  In a one world government, this same thing would be lacking.  The only difference would be is that the entire world would be like this, instead of just America."

A one-world government would actually represent the opposite of what America is.

A much better articulation of the above is by Alain de Benoist:

"Man evolved in cooperating groups united by common cultural and genetic ties, and it is only in such a setting that the individual can feel truly free, and truly protected. Men cannot live happily alone and without values or any sense of identity: such a situation leads to nihilism, drug abuse, criminality and worse. With the spread of purely egotistic goals at the expense of the altruistic regard for family and nation, the individual begins to talk of his rights rather than his duties, for he no longer feels any sense of destiny, of belonging to and being a part of a greater and more enduring entity. He no longer rejoices in the secure belief that he shares in a heritage which it is part of his common duty to protect--he no longer feels that he has anything in common with those around him. In short, he feels lonely and oppressed. Since all values have become strictly personal, everything is now equal to everything; e.g., nothing equals nothing."

[Alain de Benoist, "Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft: A Sociological View of the Decay of Modern Society"]

Who? What? Fortunately, I didn't have to take any philosophy or sociology courses as an undergrad. I suggest Russell Kirk or Frederick vonHayek as alternatives.


"There absolutely no historical evidence of any kind to support your theory that nationalism "did in" the Byzantine empire.  The empire fell directly because of the Turks and indirectly because of the sacking of Constantinople by the Catholic Crusaders in 1204, which weakened the empire, ensuring its eventual destruction.  "

The emperors after Basil II weren't so great either-its not as if they had
a good record. Also, the Byzantine Army was destroyed at Manzikert without Western interference. Therefore, I suggest you look further back into the 11th century for some other causes of Byzantine decline.

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« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2003, 01:46:35 AM »

There are those who oppose the free-trade agreements because they believe it does just the opposite.  To these people, instead of creating a truly free market, the agreements bring us a step closer towards a worldwide regulated economy.  International statism remains statism.  According to this school of thought, it is rediculous to suggest that genuine free trade needs treaties.  NAFTA becomes an imposter in free market drag, sort of like Serge' at CINEast perhaps?  Smiley

I think mercantilism hasn't seen its dying days yet.

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« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2003, 01:57:30 AM »

Quote
Nothing like religious chauvinism, heh?

I don't know what religion you are (though it'd be odd for a non-Orthodox to be here) but our Church teaches that Orthodox is the One True Faith, and not some heresies from the West (Catholicism, Protestantism, etc.).  In any case, Western Christians have always been hostile to the Eastern Orthodox, so it could arguably be even worse for us Orthodox if the EU was a Western Christian organization.

Quote
A one-world government would actually represent the opposite of what America is.

Thanks for explaining why... or should I just take your word on it?

Quote
The emperors after Basil II weren't so great either-its not as if they had
a good record. Also, the Byzantine Army was destroyed at Manzikert without Western interference. Therefore, I suggest you look further back into the 11th century for some other causes of Byzantine decline.

That's true about the emperors after Basil II, but even then there were times when Byzantium seemed to be gaining some revitalized strength.  There are many reasons as to why and how the empire fell but the two most obvious and important ones were the two I listed.
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« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2003, 02:05:50 AM »

"Free trade is supported by 99.9% of economists as the best way for two nations to grow economically.  "

Yeah but how could Romania or Albania compete with the EU and its subsides, it is not a fair free trade, or Mexico with the USA? And there's also one thing, they say that all their products must enter for free (and our products can enter for free too so it has a disguise of "equality"... but we have no products to sell). they support free trade of products so that their products can enter freelly to the poor countries, but they refuse to accept our people to go there and work!

The EU is a strange creature, they are obviously promoting free trade and ask the East natons to open theur economies, but the EU members hols statist ideas and subsides and all to protect themselves. They hold their "humanitarian internationalism" but they put pressure against the countries where their enterprises get the money (Spain , for example, demagogically agrees with the lifting of the debt against the poor countries, but after the Argentinian crisis they were the first who wanted their money back.

The spirit of the EU is completely secular and non-christian. Do you know that in the EU parlament (and in some local parlaments like that of Britain) they want to remove the name "Christmas" from the christmas holliday, and then call it "winter holliday"? Why? Because the muslims and the jews would get offended by that!!
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« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2003, 02:24:30 AM »

Quote
"Man evolved in cooperating groups united by common cultural and genetic ties, and it is only in such a setting that the individual can feel truly free, and truly protected. Men cannot live happily alone and without values or any sense of identity: such a situation leads to nihilism, drug abuse, criminality and worse. With the spread of purely egotistic goals at the expense of the altruistic regard for family and nation, the individual begins to talk of his rights rather than his duties, for he no longer feels any sense of destiny, of belonging to and being a part of a greater and more enduring entity. He no longer rejoices in the secure belief that he shares in a heritage which it is part of his common duty to protect--he no longer feels that he has anything in common with those around him. In short, he feels lonely and oppressed. Since all values have become strictly personal, everything is now equal to everything; e.g., nothing equals nothing."

[Alain de Benoist, "Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft: A Sociological View of the Decay of Modern Society"]

This is interesting. Maybe that explains the high crime rate we see in Great Britain and the US.

Quote
The spirit of the EU is completely secular and non-christian. Do you know that in the EU parlament (and in some local parlaments like that of Britain) they want to remove the name "Christmas" from the christmas holliday, and then call it "winter holliday"? Why? Because the muslims and the jews would get offended by that!!

Which goes to show the EU's true colors.  Let's not be naive here, Western Europe has become post-Christian.  Secular humanism and PC have become the love and zeal for the Eurocrats.  The EU will never be a Christian thing.  It is only interested in setting an image that it wants everyone to worship.
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« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2003, 03:15:13 AM »

"I don't know what religion you are (though it'd be odd for a non-Orthodox to be here) but our Church teaches that Orthodox is the One True Faith, and not some heresies from the West (Catholicism, Protestantism, etc.).  In any case, Western Christians have always been hostile to the Eastern Orthodox, so it could arguably be even worse for us Orthodox if the EU was a Western Christian organization."

Technically, according to your standards, I am a heretic and a schismatic: a Byzantine Catholic. Actually, I'm even worse, because I was Orthodox (and quite zealous at that) at one time. FYI, I will be reverting pretty darn soon. Also, "Western Christians" most certainly have not always been hostile towards Orthodoxy. That is a rather incorrect statement. So, a unified Europe based on Classical Protestant and Catholic ideals is worse than secular, anti-religious statism?
Also, are Catholics hereitcs or schismatics?

"A one-world government would actually represent the opposite of what America is

Thanks for explaining why... or should I just take your word on it?"

So, in the U.S. we have genuine religious tolerance, a tradition of federalism, local, devolved power, the right to bear arms and a vibrant private sector.
How does that compare with the EU?

"The emperors after Basil II weren't so great either-its not as if they had
a good record. Also, the Byzantine Army was destroyed at Manzikert without Western interference. Therefore, I suggest you look further back into the 11th century for some other causes of Byzantine decline.

That's true about the emperors after Basil II, but even then there were times when Byzantium seemed to be gaining some revitalized strength.  There are many reasons as to why and how the empire fell but the two most obvious and important ones were the two I listed."


No, Manzikert and the failure of Basil II's successors were more important, because they chroniclogically happened before the 4th Crusade. If Manzikert had been a total rout by (not of)  the Byzantine Army, its quite possible they could have still been a superpower. By 1203, the eve of the 4th Crusade, they were much weakened, much more than in 1023, the year before B2 died, or 1070, the year before Manzikert. I don' t believe Byzantium, even without the 4th Crusade, would ever have been a world-wide power. Just a regional state in SE Europe, and in a couple of hundred years Western Europe will jump past Byzantium anyways.

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« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2003, 08:28:46 AM »

I agree with anastasios, and as a finance and accounting major, Free Trade is the way to go, entry into the EU is a Good Thing(TM).

Selected individuals seem to think the EU is like some big bad organization bent on taking over the world. The Euro,as George Wills so eloquently states, reflects the subordination of politics to economics. This is also a Good Thing(TM). Economic stimulus and stability in lesser developed eastern european economies will be exceedingly helpful. The position of the free-market economists reflect this thinking.

Remember, constant economic growth leads to political stability! For an economic market to work smoothly, exchange rates must not disrupt trade or investment through their unpredictable movements. Only a single currency can shelter firms and individuals from these disruptions. Stable currencies have historically lead to stable, democratic governments. The European Union should be no different.

Furthermore, foreign exchange rates result in sizeable transaction costs which widens the "wealth" gap between nations. Before the Euro, if an individual left France with 1,000 Francs, he would have to change his money into the currency of the country he would enter. On his return home, he could be left with less than 500 Francs without having made a single purchase.

Advocates contend that if the EU controls inflation, creates a stable continental currency, and ends foreign exchange transactions costs, there can be nothing wrong with subordinating politics to economics.

Now if economies are stable, quality of life is high, wars are small or non-existant, wouldn't you contend that the EU is a GOOD THING??

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« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2003, 08:35:36 AM »

The EU might be good for economies, but its not good for religious rights, freedom of speech. Its good for the cause of secularism.

But then I'm also a states rights guy, I have no problem with Nationalism and soverignity, and despise communism, socialism and a one world government too.

But to get back on topic, the EU wanting to life special status of Mt. Athos is horrible. I hope no one is defending this EUism.
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« Reply #16 on: January 17, 2003, 09:10:52 AM »

I disagree Nik.

Where is the proof of the individuals who do not support the EU? Why is the EU always equated with the anti-christ, stomping out of religious rights, and other misconceptions?

As I mentioned before, economics reflects politics.

If the economy is stable, you will see the proliferation of good government. Democracy will be abroad, you WILL see religious rights, freedom of speech et al.

The bottom line is, when people start making money, when they start sitting on their asses and get fat, you almost always seem to witness a trend towards growing individualism and liberalism.

This, IMO, is not a bad thing for the individual, as it assures him more rights.

Please read your history and textbooks, and look at real wide world situations, before you start making blatant generalzations. A homogenous currency can and will raise the standard of life across the EU.

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« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2003, 09:27:05 AM »

Next they'll be telling us that women should be permitted to become monks and men to become nuns. Can't let such discriminatory restrictions remain in place can we Roll Eyes

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« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2003, 10:50:47 AM »

Well, I'm an EU citizen and I agree with Bobby. These are interesting times to be in the EU with the imminent enlargement of the community set to bring in millions of Orthodox believers from eastern Europe and Cyprus. Perhaps the reason our Dutch politician is able to make such a call in the first place is because he knows nothing of Orthodoxy?

Personally I am strongly pro-EU  although not uncritical of it. The European courts have forced recalcitrant national governments to implement important legislation, which left to themselves they would never have done. It has also brought peace to Europe after two world wars and certainly both parts of my own divided country have benefitted greatly from its economic aid. You must remember that in America you are in a world economic superpower, in Ireland we are on a small, insignificant island and have a chance through the EU to be at the heart of things.

I agree that the EU bureaucracy can go mad, as can the PC lobby, but Christians need to be in there fighting their cause.  

Here's an extract from the Russian Orthodox Church EU Bulletin which is well worth subscribing to via e-mail if you are interested in EU affairs:

Inclusion of Religion in a European Constitution: Dialogue Continues

According to Zenit International News Agency, the President of the European Commission Mr Romano Prodi says that the future European Constitution should not exclude cultural and religious traditions, especially the Christian, which forged the continent.

In a letter to the Convention of Christians for Europe, Mr Prodi expressed his appreciation and support of the meeting of the Convention, which was held in Barcelona on 6-8 December 2002 and culminated in the ‘Barcelona manifesto’. ‘In the process of construction of the new Europe, no one can remain on the margin or be unknown, to say nothing of excluded; the cultural and religious traditions cannot be neglected, especially the Christian, which has been and is indispensable for defining the memory and future hope of Europe,’ stated Mr Prodi. ‘In Europe, the future of Christianity is closely linked to that of the challenges of the Continent, as well as to its responsibilities before the world in this historic moment,’ he added.

The European Union ‘must demonstrate to the world that there is a democratic and civil way of administering globalization, stemming from democracy itself, stability and peace,’ said Mr Prodi in his letter. ‘In order for this to be possible, we need all the values of our tradition: the secular and religious,’ he concluded.

In response to those who believe that the Constitution should be ‘neutral’ and not mention religion, the Barcelona manifesto said, in particular, that ‘neutrality does not consist in denying the social dimension of the Christian conscience of the majority of the people of Europe, but in recognizing it, together with other religious and non-religious global conceptions with which it dialogues, to obtain the European common good and universal fraternity.’

Mr Prodi’s letter to the Convention of Christians for Europe is to be seen against the background of an ongoing dialogue between European religious leaders and politicians about the inclusion of a reference to religion in a European Constitution.

On 3 January the Vatican again signalled that the future European Constitution must respect the community of believers and recognize their contribution to society and their legal status. This was manifested during the exchange of ideas between Pope John Paul II and Patrick Cox, President of the European Parliament, who was received in audience with his wife and 12-member entourage.

To subscribe to this bulletin: http://www.orthodoxeurope.org/europaica/subscribe.php
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« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2003, 12:12:39 PM »

The EU, for everyone's edification, originated in the wake of World War II. It acquired the name "European Union" at the Treaty of Maastricht in 1992. The obvious reasons for the EU were two world wars and Communism. The idea of "single Europe" goes back to the Romans, the Benedictines, Charlemagne, and the attempts to recover the Holy Lands. For a few decades, there has been a European Parliament with nominal powers, but William Penn (Founder of the the Pennsylvania colony) in 1690 proposed the very same idea. Thus, to call this the new world order is pretty absurd. Europe may be post-Christian, but a single Europe is anything but new.

Moreover, I have to agree with Bobo. It was Europe's instability that destroyed the Christian order. It will be a stable Europe that again has reason to adopt the tough teachings of our Blessed Lord. If we worry about nominal things like this Mt. Athos story, we will miss the bigger picture. Obviously the EU cannot force anything on Mt. Athos since that would be an obvious violation of religious liberty. The EU stands to gain nothing by it but a narrow social agenda and a lot of angry people. Since Mt. Athos has nothing to do with the Single Market, I don't think we need to be worried about this. I don't think the folks in Brussels are losing much sleep over it anyway.

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« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2003, 12:23:36 PM »

Us Finance folk will beat your Econ folk any day of the week.

Bobby

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« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2003, 12:40:47 PM »

Christians have lived and survived under every social and economic system known to man,--and continue to--adjusting to the ebb and flow of the times and conditions and fortunes providence gifts and tests us with.

I believe our emphasis--relative to the EU--should not be on hypothetical issues, but on how we can use the new circumstances and opportunities presented to us, by providence, to do what we do best: evangelize and bring lost souls into the Kingdom of God.

Thanksgiving is due for the new opportunities gifted to us by the Holy Triune God to build His Kingdom , unto which all kingdoms must--ultimately--make obeisance.

In the King of Kings and only legitimate Despota, Christ, our crucified and risen Lord,

Jude
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« Reply #22 on: January 17, 2003, 12:44:55 PM »

I'm taking Financial Accounting right now, and yes, I admit that Prof. C.J. Skender is way cooler than Prof. Brad Schwartz.

"Now for the rest of the class we're going to do accounting, so if you have to go, I understand."--C.J. Skender
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« Reply #23 on: January 17, 2003, 01:27:18 PM »

Ya, Financial Accounting is a monster.

it's the hardest portion of the CPA exam.

Man, Skenders got better quotes than Schwartz!


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« Reply #24 on: January 17, 2003, 01:27:44 PM »

Jude,

     Agreed. The EU is another one of those opportunities to evangelize the world no matter how evil it seems. The world is always evil, but Our Blessed Lord has overcome it. Today's EU, like the first EU, the Roman Empire, can be the same way.

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« Reply #25 on: January 17, 2003, 02:30:43 PM »

Quote
So, a unified Europe based on Classical Protestant and Catholic ideals is worse than secular, anti-religious statism?

If not worse, then on an equal standing with the current secular type.  Either way, you have an anti-Orthodox establishment with flawed ideals and values.  

Quote
Also, are Catholics hereitcs or schismatics?

The Orthodox Church would say schismatics, but I believe this to be a euphemism more than anything else.  When the Catholics started innovating Christian theology they should have immediately been labeled heretics.  Had that been done, they might not have existed today, which would have prevented many problems in the world.

Quote
So, in the U.S. we have genuine religious tolerance, a tradition of federalism, local, devolved power, the right to bear arms and a vibrant private sector.
How does that compare with the EU?

I'm talking about social aspects of the United States and the EU.  I don't see how anything you listed would prevent the things I stated previously from coming true.  And as for religious tolerance, well, this same religious tolerance changed the nature of the United States from a God-fearing society (when it was originally founded) to a irreligious place of decadence and moral corruption.  Few places in the world are as debauched as the U.S.  It's a regular Sodom and Gomorrah.

Quote
I don' t believe Byzantium, even without the 4th Crusade, would ever have been a world-wide power. Just a regional state in SE Europe, and in a couple of hundred years Western Europe will jump past Byzantium anyways.

Unless some odd twist of fate, it probably wouldn't have continued to be a superpower.  I don't disagree there but the fact is that it still would have probably existed for several centuries more.

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The bottom line is, when people start making money, when they start sitting on their asses and get fat, you almost always seem to witness a trend towards growing individualism and liberalism.

This, IMO, is not a bad thing for the individual, as it assures him more rights.

Once again I'll quote Alain de Benoist to show the bankruptcy of such arguments:

"Over the last several decades, liberalism used communism as a scarecrow to legitimize itself. Today, however, with the bankruptcy of communism, this mode of "negative legitimation" is no longer convincing. At last, liberalism, in the sense of the emphasis on the individual above and even against that of the nation, actually endangers the individual by undermining the stability of the society which gives him identity, values, purpose and meaning, the social, cultural and biological nexus to which he owes his very being.

"Fundamentally, classical liberalism was a doctrine which, out of an abstract individual, created the pivot of its survival. In its mildest form it merely emphasized individual freedom of action, and condemned excessive bureaucratic involvement by government. But praiseworthy though its defense of individual freedom was, its claim that the ideal system is that in which there is the least possible emphasis on nationhood leads to situations which in fact endanger the freedom of the individual. In its extreme form, classical liberalism has developed into universal libertarianism, and at this point it comes close to advocating anarchy.

"From the sociological standpoint, in its extreme form, modern internationalist liberalism defines itself totally in terms of the gesellschaft society of Tonnies. It denies the historical concept of the nation state by rejecting the notion of any common interest between individuals who traditionally shared a common heritage. In the place of nationhood it proposes to generate a new international social pattern centered on the individual's quest for optimal personal and economic interest. Within the context of extreme liberalism, only the interplay of individual interests creates a functional society--a society in which the whole is viewed only as a chance aggregate of anonymous particles.

"The essence of modern liberal thought is that order is believed to be able to consolidate itself by means of all-out economic competition, that is, through the battle of all against all, requiring governments to do no more than set certain essential ground rules and provide certain services which the individual alone cannot adequately provide. Indeed, modern liberalism has gone so far along this path that it is today directly opposed to the goals of classical liberalism and libertarianism in that it denies the individual any inalienable right to property, but still shares with modern liberalism and with libertarianism an antagonism toward the idea of nationhood. Shorn of the protection of a society which identifies with its members because of a shared national history and destiny, the individual is left to grasp struggle for his own survival, without the protective sense of community which his forebears enjoyed since the earliest of human history.

"Decadence in modern mass multicultural societies begins at a moment when there is no longer any discernable meaning within society. Meaning is destroyed by raising individualism above all other values, because rampant individualism encourages the anarchical proliferation of egotism at the expense of the values that were once part of the national heritage, values that give form to the concept of nationhood and the nation state, to a state which is more than just a political entity, and which corresponds to a particular people who are conscious of sharing a common heritage for the survival of which they are prepared to make personal sacrifices."

[Alain de Benoist, "Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft: A Sociological View of the Decay of Modern Society"]

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A homogenous currency can and will raise the standard of life across the EU.

The following article shows the nagative effects of the EU currecny in Greece.  Very enlightening: http://www.e-grammes.gr/ideology/euro_en.htm

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The European courts have forced recalcitrant national governments to implement important legislation, which left to themselves they would never have done.

In other words the EU is forcing national governments whose laws are based on centuries, if not millenia, of tradition to accept alien doctrines and foreign ideals incompatible with the society.  Indeed a "blessing."
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« Reply #26 on: January 17, 2003, 02:53:14 PM »

Dear friends,

I can't possibly reply in the time I have today to all the posts in this thread.  Let me clarify something:

What I meant by nationalism doing in the Byzantine Empire is this: yes we all know the Crusaders and the Turks conquering the Byzantine Empire actually "did in" the Byz. Empire.  But would they have been able to do so IF the Serbs and Bulgarians were still a part of the Byzantine Empire? NO!  When the Serbs and the Bulgarians revolted and wanted their own "nations" that's when the Turks REALLY got moving!  Imagine if there had been a united front.

Also, under Turkish domination, there were several times when the Orthodox conceived of restarting the Byzantine Empire with Russian help.  But then the Bulgarians and Serbs and Romainians decided "we don't want to be under the Greeks."  If they had all cooperated....

Nationalism itself, in its refined 17th century form, is a western import.  So why are you all so proud of it?  A move towards unity between peoples is much more Christian--remember, God was born in the Roman Empire, where many cultures blended under ONE government.

I can't understand how one poster made the assertion that if the EU succeeds it will result in Europe being like the US--multicultural--and that THAT would result in secularism, nihilism, etc. etc.  Whatever! I think it is very inspiring to see cultures blending (I live in New York), and am quite happy to see it.  It inspires me to love mankind more.  One could make the argument that nations and tariffs and all that isolationist stuff merely hightens xenophopia.

In Christ,

anastasios
(not claiming to be an expert!)
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« Reply #27 on: January 17, 2003, 03:02:43 PM »

Plutonas,

The site you gave as a reference has absolutely no footnotes and cites no references to back up its assertions regarding EU currency. The site has a hellenistic agenda it seems. You also seem to be misinformed regarding EU policies on law and government.
Do a google search on: The Treaty of Rome, and educate yourself a bit on the EU system before you attack it.

Bobby

In addition I find the following on the website you gave:

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Hellenic Front is a patriotic party founded in 1994 and politically active since 1998. Hellenic Front's raison d' etre is to express the Greek patriots, build a National Opposition Front, reverse the policy of national servitude and compliance to the orders of the foreign interests and, at the same time, propose a modern way which, securing the National Sovereignty, leads to Freedom, Creativity and Development.

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« Reply #28 on: January 17, 2003, 03:31:36 PM »

I think we have gotten off topic here by discussing economics.  We are forgetting that there are people in power in the EU who want to destroy Christian tradition.  For those in the US, we have those people who despise God and want to remove every public reference to Him.  These same types are in Europe.  Anyone who thinks the EU will become Christian is dreaming because many of the deputys  are not Christians.  I am horrified at what the Dutch deputy has proposed.  Many in the EU have a leftist agenda that wants gender fairness and equality for all.  These are the same people that believe gender is a choice, that right/wrong are relative, that we must be open minded and nonjudgemental towards homosexuals, pedophiles, that we must have gender inclusive language so that we don't offend anyone.  The value of free trade is a moot point here, all along throughout this thread I have been speaking the social agenda of these Eurocrats.  We should be focusing on this, and not on the merits of free trade.
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« Reply #29 on: January 17, 2003, 03:53:43 PM »

That is a loaded statement with no proof to back it up. The EU is not all new-age liberals. In fact, Europe has many conservative political parties that identify themselves as Christian. It is a union of democracies, right or wrong, that acts in treaties and international agreements. When the Central and Eastern European Countries join in 2004, many more Orthodox will be in the EU and serve on the European Commission and the Council of Ministers. This can be a good thing. It may never become Christian in a true sense, but a stable, united Europe will certainly allow Christianity to flourish.

Matt, also "not an expert"
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« Reply #30 on: January 17, 2003, 03:59:16 PM »

I’m no expert on Byzantine history, the EU or Athos but Nicholas asked me to throw my hat in here. My views are well known and can be read at length on my site.

Free trade is the way to go.

The appeal of big, imperial systems like the EU for well-meaning Christians is understandable because it is a secular mimic of spiritual community, Catholicity.

This latest counterfeit of the unity of medieval Christendom AFAIK is no friend to real Christianity.

To my libertarian American mind, Athos is like the local tennis club or the Boy Scouts: it is a private organization on its own land and has the right to be left alone.
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« Reply #31 on: January 17, 2003, 04:01:51 PM »

Quote
What I meant by nationalism doing in the Byzantine Empire is this: yes we all know the Crusaders and the Turks conquering the Byzantine Empire actually "did in" the Byz. Empire.  But would they have been able to do so IF the Serbs and Bulgarians were still a part of the Byzantine Empire? NO!  When the Serbs and the Bulgarians revolted and wanted their own "nations" that's when the Turks REALLY got moving!  Imagine if there had been a united front.

The Serbian and Bulgarian insurgencies had less to do with building nation-states than to furthering powerful nobles thirst for greed and power (feudalism).  After all, at that time Serbian and Bulgarian culture was no different than Byzantine culture: Greek (as opposed to the vernacular) was spoken in their courts, their nobles dressed in Byzantine fashion, their princes were sent to Constantinople to be educated, and their Cyrillic written language was based on the Greek alphabet.  

This argument is strengthened when you take into consideration that many of the Slavic tsars would not simply declare themselves to be tsar of all Bulgarians or Serbs (as a true national leader would) but rather tsar of all Bulgarians and Hellenes.  For example, Stefan Dushan proclaimed himself "Emperor of the Greeks and Serbs" in 1346 and tsar Simeon's full title was actually "Tsar of Bulgars and Autocrat of the Romans" (Greeks).  And then of course take into consideration the Bulgarian attempts to lay siege to Constantinople (Simeon's dream was to rule the Byzantine Empire).  If they were looking to build ethnic empires and nation-states, please explain to me why they would want foreigners (Greeks) in their national states?    

As Ferdinand Schevill writes:

"By amassing vast estates their power steadily grew in the provinces till they boasted a position like that of the feudal magnates of the West.  Even the popular Macedonian line, including the iron-willed Basil II, was frequently troubled with the revolt of the great lords, whose status, due in the first place to their landed wealth, was dangerously enhanced by virtue of their holding the great positions at court and in the army. As soon as Basil II's strong hand was removed it became apparent that his weakling brother, Constantine VIII, was not equal to the occassion, and a preponderance of the feudal elements made itself felt which, by making the crown the plaything of noble factions, largely accounts for the overthrow of the state effected by the Fourth Crusade." ... which in turn largely accounts for the overhtow of the state effected by the Ottomans.

So, in the end, it was this growing feudalism -- and not the compulsion to build nation-states or ethnic empires -- which led to the gradual weakening and insurgencies within the Empire.

Quote
Also, under Turkish domination, there were several times when the Orthodox conceived of restarting the Byzantine Empire with Russian help.  But then the Bulgarians and Serbs and Romainians decided "we don't want to be under the Greeks."  If they had all cooperated....

One of the main reasons why the Romanians refused to revolt together with the Greeks is because of the torment and oppression Greek tax-collectors (phanariotes) put them through in the name of the Ottoman Empire and amassing personal wealth.  Had these traitorous Greeks not become subserviant lackeys of a Turkish sultan looking to better themselves on the plight of their own people and co-religionists perhaps then things would have been a little diffeent.

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Nationalism itself, in its refined 17th century form, is a western import.  So why are you all so proud of it?  A move towards unity between peoples is much more Christian--remember, God was born in the Roman Empire, where many cultures blended under ONE government.

Nationalism is a form of patriotism, and patriotism has always existed -- even before Christ was born.  Modern-day nationalism (the idea of building a "Greece for the Greeks" or a "Serbia for the Serbians") did indeed begin after the French Revolution and you should be thankful that it did as it inspired the Greek and other Balkan revolutions.  If nationalism did not exist, you would probably be an Ottoman Turk right now.

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I can't understand how one poster made the assertion that if the EU succeeds it will result in Europe being like the US--multicultural--and that THAT would result in secularism, nihilism, etc. etc.  Whatever! I think it is very inspiring to see cultures blending (I live in New York), and am quite happy to see it.  It inspires me to love mankind more.  One could make the argument that nations and tariffs and all that isolationist stuff merely hightens xenophopia.

I cited sociological excerpts explaining in detail how and why this comes about, but if you prefer to live in ignorance, then go ahead and do so.  I guess it is easier living that way.

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The site has a hellenistic agenda it seems.

That doesn't discredit the website at all.  Facts are facts, no matter who is saying them.

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You also seem to be misinformed regarding EU policies on law and government.

I know that Greece, Romania, and Cyprus can no longer legally jail homosexuals for being homosexuals, but must tolerate them because of the EU's insistence.  These are the type of laws that the EU wants for Orthodox countries.
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« Reply #32 on: January 17, 2003, 04:03:38 PM »

Treaty of Masstricht:

The Union shall set itself the following objectives:



— to promote economic and social progress and a high level of employment and to achieve balanced and sustainable development, in particular through the creation of an area without internal frontiers, through the strengthening of economic and social cohesion and through the establishment of economic and monetary union, ultimately including a single currency in accordance with the provisions of this Treaty;



— to assert its identity on the international scene, in particular through the implementation of a common foreign and security policy including the progressive framing of a common defence policy, which might lead to a common defence, in accordance with the provisions of Article 17;



— to strengthen the protection of the rights and interests of the nationals of its Member States through the introduction of a citizenship of the Union;



— to maintain and develop the Union as an area of freedom, security and justice, in which the free movement of persons is assured in conjunction with appropriate measures with respect to external border controls, asylum, immigration and the prevention and combating of crime;



— to maintain in full the acquis communautaire and build on it with a view to considering to what extent the policies and forms of cooperation introduced by this Treaty may need to be revised with the aim of ensuring the effectiveness of the mechanisms and the institutions of the Community.



The objectives of the Union shall be achieved as provided in this Treaty and in accordance with the conditions and the timetable set out therein while respecting the principle of subsidiarity as defined in Article 5 of the Treaty establishing the European Community.
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« Reply #33 on: January 17, 2003, 07:35:57 PM »

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Now if economies are stable, quality of life is high, wars are small or non-existant, wouldn't you contend that the EU is a GOOD THING??

No since in most EU countries abortion is out of control, cohabitiation over marriage is the norm, rejection of religion is all the rage.....Are these good?
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« Reply #34 on: January 17, 2003, 08:05:48 PM »

Plutonas,

What exactly do you mean by: "If nationalism did not exist, you would probably be an Ottoman Turk right now."


Just curious,
Economan, who has one term of grad school in economics under his belt.
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« Reply #35 on: January 18, 2003, 12:42:24 AM »

Plutonas,

Thank you for a well-reaonsed response.  I will attempt to digest it tomorrow as I must sign off now.

in Christ,

anastasios
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« Reply #36 on: January 18, 2003, 06:13:07 AM »


Quote
The European courts have forced recalcitrant national governments to implement important legislation, which left to themselves they would never have done.

In other words the EU is forcing national governments whose laws are based on centuries, if not millenia, of tradition to accept alien doctrines and foreign ideals incompatible with the society.  Indeed a "blessing."

No, in other words the EU forced the British government, for example,  to grant basic rights as regards pay, conditions, holiday entitlements etc. to part-time workers, the majority of whom are women. The British Conservative government fought tooth and nail to prevent this happening, aren't the labourers worthy of their hire?

Yes, and unlike America we Europeans do have millenia of tradition, rather than centuries. 17th century buildings are classified as modern here  Grin
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« Reply #37 on: January 18, 2003, 03:55:10 PM »

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What exactly do you mean by: "If nationalism did not exist, you would probably be an Ottoman Turk right now."

Well, I thought that Anastasios was a Greek (since he was using a Greek name as his nick), in which case the comment would have applied, but after looking at some posts it seems that he's actually not Greek.

Quote
Thank you for a well-reaonsed response.  I will attempt to digest it tomorrow as I must sign off now.

I hope you aren't being sarcastic because I think I went overboard with that post (e.g. accusing you of being ignorant, etc.).  My apologies for that.  I hope I have not offended you.

Quote
No, in other words the EU forced the British government, for example,  to grant basic rights as regards pay, conditions, holiday entitlements etc. to part-time workers, the majority of whom are women. The British Conservative government fought tooth and nail to prevent this happening, aren't the labourers worthy of their hire?

Okay, but what about what I said concerning the European Union forcing EU (and non-EU countries like Cyprus and Romania) to revoke laws that can jail homosexuals?  
 
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« Reply #38 on: January 18, 2003, 06:52:09 PM »

Well, I'm an EU citizen and I agree with Bobby. These are interesting times to be in the EU with the imminent enlargement of the community set to bring in millions of Orthodox believers from eastern Europe and Cyprus. Perhaps the reason our Dutch politician is able to make such a call in the first place is because he knows nothing of Orthodoxy?]



Dear Brigid,

Perhaps you can address a question I have about EU action against Eire, and whether or not the following story is true or apocryphal.

My understanding is that, in addition to invoking the Holy Trinity in its preamble, the constitution of the Irish Republic affirms traditional gender roles, viz., that the special role of women in society is that of nurturing children and homemaking.  I read somewhere that Brussels was pressuring Dublin to excise this language from the Irish constitution, due to its presumed 'sexism'.  Do you know if this is true?
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« Reply #39 on: January 18, 2003, 07:03:10 PM »

Brigid wrote:

"The European courts have forced recalcitrant national governments to implement important legislation, which left to themselves they would never have done....You must remember that in America you are in a world economic superpower, in Ireland we are on a small, insignificant island and have a chance through the EU to be at the heart of things."

Sorry, Brigid, I meant to quote from this part of your original message as an intro to my question about Brussels pressuring Ireland to change its constitution.
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« Reply #40 on: January 18, 2003, 07:05:04 PM »

Plutonas, do you really think that homosexuals should be jailed solely because of their sexual orientation?  What if they're celibate?  What about the non-celibate fornicating practicing heterosexuals?  I think the EU is right here: pathological sexual orientation should not be cause for imprisonment.

Hypo-Ortho
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« Reply #41 on: January 18, 2003, 08:12:27 PM »

I don't think it's the best method in dealing with them (as it probably has no effect in curing them, or from stoping others from taking part in homosexual acts) but at the very least it minimizes the number of homosexuals roaming the streets by isolating them somewhere where they can have no detrimental effects on the fabric of society. The best way to go about the homosexual problem, I think, would be to explore different ways in curing their sexual anomaly as someone would explore various ways to cure a various disease or affliction.

However, whether you support or don't support homosexuals being jailed, it doesn't change the fact the EU would have us tolerate homosexuals and their anomalous ways as perfectly normal, which not only goes against our Orthodox Christian faith, but also gives rise to more decadence.  This law is a dangerous precedent as it will probably lead to laws where young children will be taught in schools that homosexuality is a perfectly normal and respectable way of life.  And by that time there won't be much we'll be able to do.  



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« Reply #42 on: January 19, 2003, 11:58:20 AM »

Dear Brigid,

Perhaps you can address a question I have about EU action against Eire, and whether or not the following story is true or apocryphal.

My understanding is that, in addition to invoking the Holy Trinity in its preamble, the constitution of the Irish Republic affirms traditional gender roles, viz., that the special role of women in society is that of nurturing children and homemaking.  I read somewhere that Brussels was pressuring Dublin to excise this language from the Irish constitution, due to its presumed 'sexism'.  Do you know if this is true?


Good question and I thank you for it. The original Irish Constitution which was drawn up in 1937 reflected, among other things, the notion of a "special position" of the RC Church, a territorial claim to the six counties of the state of Northern Ireland and the idea that the 'proper place' of women was in the home. There have been 26 amendments to the Constitution proposed since then (only 24 of which have been accepted by the Irish parliament).

The preamble to the 1937 Constitution invoking the Trinity is still in force and I enclose it below, along with article 41 about women and the family. I have also enclosed articles 44 dealing with the homage due to God and 45 which says that women have a right to earn a living!

The status of women in Ireland has not been a shining example to the nations, in the 1970s, for example, a woman still needed the signature of her husband or father to be able to apply for a reading ticket at a public library! As a postgraduate student in Dublin in 1981, I myself was told that my father's signature was necessary for me to open an account at the Bank of Ireland (I took my business elsewhere). I don't think you need to be Gloria Steinem to find these attitudes unacceptable.

I don't know of any proposals by the EU to force further change, but I am actually a citizen of Northern Ireland. We have British-style divorce law here but abortion is illegal in NI with very few exceptions. Don't worry if you don't understand Ireland, nobody who lives here does either. Thank you for raising this point, I will try to find out more on the EU angle. Brigid



PREAMBLE
In the Name of the Most Holy Trinity, from Whom is all authority and to Whom, as our final end, all actions both of men and States must be referred,

We, the people of +ëire,

Humbly acknowledging all our obligations to our Divine Lord, Jesus Christ, Who sustained our fathers through centuries of trial,

Gratefully remembering their heroic and unremitting struggle to regain the rightful independence of our Nation,

And seeking to promote the common good, with due observance of Prudence, Justice and Charity, so that the dignity and freedom of the individual may be assured, true social order attained, the unity of our country restored, and concord established with other nations,

Do hereby adopt, enact, and give to ourselves this Constitution.

Article 41

1.    1-¦ The State recognises the Family as the natural primary and fundamental unit group of Society, and as a moral institution possessing inalienable and imprescriptible rights, antecedent and superior to all positive law.

2-¦ The State, therefore, guarantees to protect the Family in its constitution and authority, as the necessary basis of social order and as indispensable to the welfare of the Nation and the State.

2.    1-¦ In particular, the State recognises that by her life within the home, woman gives to the State a support without which the common good cannot be achieved.

2-¦ The State shall, therefore, endeavour to ensure that mothers shall not be obliged by economic necessity to engage in labour to the neglect of their duties in the home.

3.    1-¦ The State pledges itself to guard with special care the institution of Marriage, on which the Family is founded, and to protect it against attack.


Article 44

1.    The State acknowledges that the homage of public worship is due to Almighty God. It shall hold His Name in reverence, and shall respect and honour religion.

Article 45

2.    The State shall, in particular, direct its policy towards securing:

                               i.            That the citizens (all of whom, men and women equally, have the right to an adequate means of livelihood) may through their occupations find the means of making reasonable provision for their domestic needs.

http://193.178.1.117/upload/publications/297.htm


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« Reply #43 on: January 19, 2003, 03:04:24 PM »

Many thanks for the beautiful quotations from the Irish constitution, which I agree with. Note it doesn’t say women must stay at home and work nowhere else. It upholds ‘traditional values’ without stepping on anybody’s rights. Brilliant. But I also agree with you, Brigid, that the paternalism of some Irish institutions to women until recently is wrong.

Do people in Northern Ireland have automatic dual citizenship (UK and Eire), owing to the Republic’s claim on the territory?
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« Reply #44 on: January 19, 2003, 09:16:48 PM »

Thanks, Brigid

Those quotations are beautiful.  The closest we can get is to a deistic 18th century "creator" in our founding documents.  Makes me want to move to Ireland, except I understand that it's going through the 1960s.  

My wife worked in Ulster for a summer with both Protestant and Catholic children and she'll always treasure that experience.
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