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Author Topic: Working Poor, Conservative, and Religious Americans Are the Most Generous
Steve Eisenberg
The "Was on Sale" Song


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Who Gives to Charity?

quote:
Of the top 25 states where people give an above-average percentage of their income, all but one (Maryland) were red -- conservative -- states in the last presidential election.

"When you look at the data," says Syracuse University professor Arthur Brooks, "it turns out the conservatives give about 30 percent more. And incidentally, conservative-headed families make slightly less money."

. . .

Conservatives are even 18 percent more likely to donate blood.

The second myth is that people with the most money are the most generous. But while the rich give more in total dollars, low-income people give almost 30 percent more as a share of their income.

Says Brooks: "The most charitable people in America today are the working poor."

We saw that in Sioux Falls, S.D. The workers at the meat packing plant make about $35,000, yet the Sioux Falls United Way says it gets more contributions of over $500 from employees there than anywhere else.

. . .

Finally, Brooks says one thing stands out as the biggest predictor of whether someone will be charitable: "their religious participation." Religious people are more likely to give to charity, and when they give, they give more money -- four times as much.

But doesn't that giving just stay within the religion?

"No," says Brooks, "Religious Americans are more likely to give to every kind of cause and charity, including explicitly nonreligious charities. Religious people give more blood; religious people give more to homeless people on the street."

Source excerpt here.

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"Hillel says yes, naturally, and Shammai says no, and Maimonides is perplexed, and what do I know?"
Julius Lester

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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I heard him interviewed on Bob Edwards this morning, and I am pleasantly surprised by the results on one hand, and very disturbed on the other.

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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Malruhn
The "Was on Sale" Song


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May I make a completely gratuitously snarky comment here?

Conservatives are busy making money and quietly giving while liberals are busy making money and loudly complaining that other people give up their money.

Okay, that's off my chest! Sorry... just need some sleep... hmmmm....

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Opinions aren't excuses to remain ignorant about subjects, nor are they excuses to never examine one's beliefs & prejudices...

Babies are like tattoos. You see other peoples' & they're cool, but yours is never as good & you can't get rid of it.

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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Well, so we know that the people who are giving more, according to this source (and I saw the segment on TV) are lower than average income, and conservatives, and are religious. More conservatives, from what they tell us, tend to be "religious" than liberals, and tend to make less money. So how can they tease out, in a person who was all three, which factor was the one that created generosity?

There is no study to prove that the reason they gave more was their conservativism as opposed to their lower income status or their stronger religious views.

The strongly conservative people I have known personally, in my life, tended to be pretty stingy, actually, UNLESS they were religious, and then sometimes they were still stingy but sometimes they weren't. I reckon it to their religious beliefs, not their political ones.

That's just my take on it. No cites. Source - my ass!

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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Il-Mari
We Three Blings


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As I hear it (I have no source, just things I've heard in conversation), the most suprising result of this sutdy is really that self-identified independents give significantly less than either liberals or conservatives.

I suppose it's not as sexy a result, but really pretty interesting in my opinion (if it is indeed the case).

- Il-Mari

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When you mix faith with science, you serve neither and weaken both.

- Richard P. Sloan and Larry VandeCreek

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Simply Madeline
The First USA Noel


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The link will not load for me.

Is this one of those studies where they count contributions to your church as charity. Even if the contribution to the church is going to build a new house for the pastor? Or a new roof for the youth center?

Or is this the Stossel deal with the Salvation Army buckets?

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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He specifically did not count church offerings as charity, as I recall.

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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Esprise Me
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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When this liberal feels like giving money away, she usually gives it to the ACLU, Lambda Legal, a Democratic candidate running in a close election against a really scary Republican (I'm still waiting for my thank-you, Mr. Casey!) or some other non-charitable but still hardly selfish enterprise. For whatever that's worth...

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"If God wrote it, the grammar must be infallible. Perhaps it is we who are mistaken." -MapleLeaf

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put it in writing
Xboxing Day


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quote:
Conservatives are even 18 percent more likely to donate blood.

Have you ever checked out the qualifications to give blood? No men who have had even a single sexual encounter with another man since 77, no one who's ever used needle drugs, so one with a fresh tattoo or piercing, etc. I'm thinking that maybe more conservatives qualify to give blood.

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and it's 1 - 2 - 3, what are we fighting for? don't ask me, I don't give a damn

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Mickey Blue
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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Well, it seems to me this proves who gives to the salvation army.. So if I, a liberal, don't give to that particular charity then I wouldn't be measured..

Aside from what I presume was a survey and since the questions were not posted I find it difficult to measure its validity.. For example is a religious person somebody who believes in god and an unreligious person somebody who dosn't? Or is a religious person somebody who goes to church regularly and an unreligious person is somebody who dosn't? Two very different things really.

I give to multiple charities (though I suppose I am in the "working poor" bracket right now, not sure where the cutoff is) but don't give to the salvatin army buckets, so they'd assume I don't give anything.


One could also make the argument that while religious people in this study gave a few bucks here and there to the poor, they vote against policies that may actually help the poor again and again through conservitive candidates, by voting against welfare, socialized medicine, and a plethora of other topics.. I'm not saying thats necessarily the case, but its just about as accurate an argument as the one presented in the OP.

Incidentally I donate my money to the SPCA, a local firefighter charity we have here to help lower-income families in the surrounding areas, and the ACLU.. Not to mention numerous holiday-only charities, such as Toy Lift and food drives.

How big of a percentage of my income is that? Don't know.

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"All people are responsible for the good that they didn't do"

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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Mickey, good points.

--------------------
"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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Mistletoey Chloe
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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What about the fact that leftists might not be giving to the Salvation Army because of the SA's discriminatory employment practices?

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~~Ai am in mai prrrrrraime!~~

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Simply Madeline
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Mistletoey Chloe:
What about the fact that leftists might not be giving to the Salvation Army because of the SA's discriminatory employment practices?

Or the fact that in the past, gay activists have organised boycotts of the Salvation Army? I wonder if that had an impact on the level of donations to SA in SF.

(finally got to the link!)

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Mickey Blue, before you criticize this author's surveying, shouldn't you know how he did it first?

After listening to him discuss it, I think there is far more to it than figuring out how much people are giving to the Salvation Army.

And Esprise Me, most of those you listed would have been included as "charity" given Mr Brooks' definition of it.

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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Mistletoey Chloe
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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I was referrring to Stossel's 20/20 test. But there are also problems with Brooks' remarks, *as they're represented in the excerpt*: what about the idea that leftists may have problems with the concept of charity itself? That they may be distrustful of organizations like the SA and the United Way, that have allowed themselves to become politicized in problematic ways? That they may give to individually needy people who would not be counted in tax receipts? That they may not be deducting such gifts from their taxes, and therefore not showing up?

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~~Ai am in mai prrrrrraime!~~

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AdmiralDinty
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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Unless I'm blind, where in the OP does it say anything about the Salvation Army?

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"I wanna bite the hand that feeds me. I wanna bite that hand so badly. I wanna make them wish they'd never seen me." - Elvis Costello

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BeachLife
The Bills of St. Mary's


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But the article goes into a lot more detail than just what happened with the Salvation Army buckets.

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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
Jack Dragon, On Being a Dragon
Confessions of a Dragon's scribe
Diary of my Heart Surgery

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Mistletoey Chloe
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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Click the red words in the first line.

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~~Ai am in mai prrrrrraime!~~

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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quote:
Originally posted by Mistletoey Chloe:
I was referrring to Stossel's 20/20 test. But there are also problems with Brooks' remarks, *as they're represented in the excerpt*: what about the idea that leftists may have problems with the concept of charity itself? That they may be distrustful of organizations like the SA and the United Way, that have allowed themselves to become politicized in problematic ways? That they may give to individually needy people who would not be counted in tax receipts? That they may not be deducting such gifts from their taxes, and therefore not showing up?

Ah, I see. Brooks did discuss those very same concerns (albeit briefly) on his Bob Edwards interview.

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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Mistletoey Chloe
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by put it in writing:
quote:
Conservatives are even 18 percent more likely to donate blood.

Have you ever checked out the qualifications to give blood? No men who have had even a single sexual encounter with another man since 77, no one who's ever used needle drugs, so one with a fresh tattoo or piercing, etc. I'm thinking that maybe more conservatives qualify to give blood.
I can't give blood, due to my possible exposure to mad cow [Roll Eyes] , but I'd like to.

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~~Ai am in mai prrrrrraime!~~

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AdmiralDinty
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by Mistletoey Chloe:
Click the red words in the first line.

So it's confirmed; I am blind.

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"I wanna bite the hand that feeds me. I wanna bite that hand so badly. I wanna make them wish they'd never seen me." - Elvis Costello

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Horse Chestnut
Happy Holly Days


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Even though there are some qualifying circumstances - distrust by liberals of many of the organizations such as church or the United Way - I still think we should take a long, hard look at these numbers.

I know I probably do not give to causes or charities as much as I should. Perhaps if I belonged to a church, and were faced with my fellow congregants filling the collection plate, I would be more inclined to dig into my pocket and give.

On the other hand, I seldom write off any charitable contributions, so maybe I am just "giving under the radar", so to speak.

I was confused when Stossel said that the non-working poor make as much as the working poor. I know people on welfare, and I really do not think any of them are getting $35,000 a year.

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Elkhound
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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Conservatives and liberals both believe that the less fortunate should be helped. The difference is that Conservatives give their own money to do so and Liberals want to take other people's money to do so.

Conservatives believe that they should, out of the goodness of their hearts, voluntarily give to help those whom they deem to need it. Liberals believe that money should be extracted by the government's coercive power from some people to be given to other people whom the Liberals deem to need it.

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"The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart."--Iris Murdoch

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Mistletoey Chloe
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by Elkhound:
Conservatives and liberals both believe that the less fortunate should be helped. The difference is that Conservatives give their own money to do so and Liberals want to take other people's money to do so.


What a load of rubbish. Think about what you've said: if the only control you've got over what money goes to good and important causes is how much you personally can afford to donate, it doesn't matter whether you donate nothing or every penny you can squeeze. My personal impact will be so tiny as not to count. But taxes oblige everyone (and you will be showing me how "Liberals" want taxes to apply only to others, won't you?) to kick in a share.

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~~Ai am in mai prrrrrraime!~~

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Howard
Deck the Malls


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quote:
Originally posted by Elkhound:
Conservatives and liberals both believe that the less fortunate should be helped. The difference is that Conservatives give their own money to do so and Liberals want to take other people's money to do so.

Conservatives believe that they should, out of the goodness of their hearts, voluntarily give to help those whom they deem to need it. Liberals believe that money should be extracted by the government's coercive power from some people to be given to other people whom the Liberals deem to need it.

Wow! You'd think that someone who's been around as long as you would learn to stay away from generalizations.

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"I believe you believe that, but I just think you're confused."

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AdmiralDinty
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by Mistletoey Chloe:
But taxes oblige everyone (and you will be showing me how "Liberals" want taxes to apply only to others, won't you?) to kick in a share.

Simple. They hide the money in their evil Liberal lairs. This is also where they gnaw on the bodies of aborted fetuses, hide illegal aliens, and communicate with Osama Bin Laden and Kim Jong-Il.

With a [fish] to show I'm joking.

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"I wanna bite the hand that feeds me. I wanna bite that hand so badly. I wanna make them wish they'd never seen me." - Elvis Costello

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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Admiral Dinty, how silly. You know that liberals don't want illegal aliens hiding out in some crummy dark Liberal lair. We'd much rather kick CEO's out of their mansions and put the illegal aliens in them, after we change all the "private property" signs to Spanish.

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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Doug4.7
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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quote:
Originally posted by Mistletoey Chloe:
But taxes oblige everyone (and you will be showing me how "Liberals" want taxes to apply only to others, won't you?) to kick in a share.

The problem is not the impact, it is the fact that a tax is forcing people to "contribute" to a charity/group they may not like.

I don't mind that YOU want your tax money (or "regular" money) to go to group XXX, but maybe I mind that MY tax money (or "regular" money) goes to it.

As for the impact, sure, my contribution makes no difference, but when a lot of folks contribute to the same charity, it DOES matter.

--------------------
And now for something completely different...

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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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But Doug, that's the catch with a democracy.

I didn't want my tax dollars going to fund a war I thought was bogus, either, yet the Conservatives had no qualms with spending my tax money on it whether I liked it or not.

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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ThistleSoftware
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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I think the difference between preferring taxes or charity is a matter of which you trust to most efficiently help people, and of course which causes you consider most important.

While I do give some money to charity, I consider a well-run government to be a more efficient provider of education, infrastructure, social safety nets, and health care. Ideally the government has the broad view and the resources necessary to provide these complex services. Charities are more like spot fixes. They can help a few people at a time, or a large number of people with one problem at a time. I would rather not have hundreds of unconnected charities taking care of everything that government currently (or ideally) takes care of.

As far as keeping the government at maximum efficiency, well, that's what voting is for. Obviously the system is far from perfect as it stands but I think it has a great deal of potential.

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Officially Heartless

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Doug4.7
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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quote:
Originally posted by snapdragonfly:
But Doug, that's the catch with a democracy.

I didn't want my tax dollars going to fund a war I thought was bogus, either, yet the Conservatives had no qualms with spending my tax money on it whether I liked it or not.

True. I am also not fond of some of the ways my government spends my money. I just feel that if you think some charity is good, give to it. Don't try to get the government (i.e., the rest of us) to give to it.

--------------------
And now for something completely different...

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ThistleSoftware
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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Do you have any examples of people trying to get the government to give tax money to charities?

The only one I can think of is the "faith based initiatives" deal.

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Officially Heartless

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snapdragonfly
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Well, I can't say it any better than Thistle did.

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"Wolves, dragons and vampires, man. Draw the nut-bars like big ol' nut-bar magnets." ~evilrabbit

(snurched because one of my nutbar family members is all about wolves and another one is all about dragons...)(with apologies to surfcitydogdad)

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DevilBunny
Deck the Malls


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Conservatives and liberals both believe that the less fortunate should be helped. The difference is that Conservatives give their own money to do so and Liberals want to take other people's money to do so.

<looks at the monthly direct debits to various charities>

If you say so...

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"For God has seven thousand names, and one of them is bastard"

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
Happy Xmas (Warranty Is Over)


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Doug, what do you consider "charity?"

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"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty."--George Bernard Shaw

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