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Thank you Matt for your response. You are correct that there are "different strands" in the Orthodox community -- and about particulars there always will be, as long as these differences do not contend against "the mind of Christ," which is completely self-sacrificing.

You are also correct that in current political parlance, a conservative should want to put less power in the hands of authorities, and liberals would entrust the authorities with more. This is a modern definition, because in Christendom (i.e., Byzantine and Roman Catholic civilization until the early 15th century), the government had quite a bit of power (even over the marketplace), and that government could not be called liberal at all.

You suggest that socialism necessitates atheism, and that somehow environmentalism and social/racial justice help bring about socialism and/or atheism.

"Socialism" itself is a term that is complicated. In the early 19th century, when socialism came to the fore, you might be interested to know that there were many models of socialism, and many if not most of them were thoroughly Christian. Only a few -- like Marxism, and later Leninism and Stalinism -- were committed to atheism, founded as they were upon the Marxist dialectic of history, along with its eschatology.

One other thing -- while most people may not identify themselves as polluters in their own right, many Christians in fact oppose any regulation upon corporations that restrict pollution. They do so because they assume that laissez-faire economic theory must be Christian, when in fact this is not historically the case.

Thank you for your post. It is interesting the different strands in Orthodox thinking. It seems that there is a desire by many to transform American into a more socialist and atheistic society. It seems the two are linked as past examples of socialism necessitated atheism.

It also seems that certain causes, environmentalism, social and racial justice are simply the most effective ways to accomplish the first two goals. What I mean is that most people think we should not pollute the earth, for example, but many people don't think there should be a central planning committee that allocates resources to individuals based on a pollution formula.

It seems dangerous to put more and more control and power into fewer and fewer hands. To me a conservative wants to put less power in the hands of authorities while a liberal, to me, wants to put give authorities wide ranging and nearly absolute power to determine what people should think, do and say.

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