COOLTRIBE

Here's an email newsletter from Cooltribe. http://www.cooltribe.com/

Dear Cooltribe member,

This newsletter is to inform you of the new exciting features added to Cooltribe this month. But first, I would like to take a second to thank you all for your continued support.

Two months ago, Cooltribe didn't exist and already today, we have the solid foundations of a caring and active community. What inspires me is our ability to collectively make a difference, to make our mark on the world. The world doesn't change overnight and we know it takes more than one person but let's not underestimate the power of one single action and its ripple effects.

We have chosen the pressing issue of the "Rainforests" as the first cause Cooltribe will address. At the current rate of deforestation, 75% of the Amazon will be depleted by 2030 so we need to take action. Cooltribe has made a pledge to plant 1 million trees in the rainforests and with your help we can do this in time for the Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, December 2009.

How will we achieve that?

o For every new member who joins Cooltribe and for every existing member with a completed profile, we will plant 1 tree in the rainforests, FREE to our members

o You will receive, from our tree planting partner, Carbonica.org (who is fully regulated by DEFRA), a full certificate with GPS coordinates of the tree's location, the type of tree planted and the amount of CO2 absorbed by the tree during its lifetime. Show it off!

So what can YOU do to help?

o First, check that your profile is completed. When it is, automatically, you will be eligible for 1 tree and a tree icon will appear by your profile.

o Tell as many people as possible about our initiative and get them to join us. We need your help to spread the message and achieve our 1 million trees.

In addition to the above, you will be pleased to see our "Interview with Eco-Heroes" box where we will bring you weekly exciting interviews of people who are walking the green talk. If you know a "Eco-Hero", please let us know and we will try our hardest to interview them. We have also fixed bugs and made other technical tweaks.

We have many more changes in the pipeline, like for example a reward system where we will select member of the week/month so bear with us as we implement them.

Your continued feedback is appreciated and we will try to incorporate your suggestions in our future releases.

Big Hugs as always

Hessia Fernandes
Founder, Cooltribe

I joined. I'm an environmentalist. I have been since I first started learning about naturalism and conservation as a little kid. Good stewardship is Christian. Bad stewardship is antichrist. Of course, the metaphysical has its dark side versus truth too; so within circles claiming Christianity, there's plenty of the attitude that since "matter" is not spirit and God is spirit, it must be okay to ruin the Creation. Well, the Creation is home to many, and Jesus doesn't destroy his neighbor's homes. If everyone were to care on the level that our brother, Jesus, demonstrated in the flesh, we'd be in Heaven already right here and now.

Don't let the simplicity of this post fool you. The issue of environmentalism goes straight to the heart. To be consistent, everyone has to be an environmentalist; but to be a consistent environmentalist, everyone has to love one another as Jesus loved and still loves his closest friends and relatives in flesh and spirit.

If everyone would come to comprehend that, again, we'd be in Heaven already right here and now. I'm sorry my mundane brothers and sisters turn their backs in selfishness. I'm pleased my real, spiritual brothers and sisters stand up though.

The Christian Commons Project is Creation care.

Peace,

Tom Usher

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The following should appear at the end of every post:

According to the IRS, "Know the law: Avoid political campaign intervention":

Tax-exempt section 501(c)(3) organizations like churches, universities, and hospitals must follow the law regarding political campaigns. Unfortunately, some don't know the law.

Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are prohibited from participating in any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. The prohibition applies to campaigns at the federal, state and local level.

Violation of this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. Section 501(c)(3) private foundations are subject to additional restrictions.

Political Campaign Intervention

Political campaign intervention includes any activities that favor or oppose one or more candidates for public office. The prohibition extends beyond candidate endorsements.

Contributions to political campaign funds, public statements of support or opposition (verbal or written) made by or on behalf of an organization, and the distribution of materials prepared by others that support or oppose any candidate for public office all violate the prohibition on political campaign intervention.

Factors in determining whether a communication results in political campaign intervention include the following:

  • Whether the statement identifies one or more candidates for a given public office
  • Whether the statement expresses approval or disapproval of one or more candidates' positions and/or actions
  • Whether the statement is delivered close in time to the election
  • Whether the statement makes reference to voting or an election
  • Whether the issue addressed distinguishes candidates for a given office

Many religious organizations believe, as we do, that the above constitutes a violation of the First Amendment of the US Constitution.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

That said, we make the following absolutely clear here:

  • The Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project not only do not endorse any candidate for any secular office, we say that Christianity forbids voting in such elections.
  • Furthermore, when we discuss any public-office holder's position, policy, action or inaction, we definitely are not encouraging anyone to vote for that office holder's position.
  • We are not trying to influence secular elections but rather want people to come out from that entire fallen system.
  • When we analyze or discuss what is termed "public policy," we do it entirely from a theological standpoint with an eye to educating professing Christians and those to whom we are openly always proselytizing to convert to authentic Christianity.
  • It is impossible for us to fully evangelize and proselytize without directly discussing the pros and cons of public policy and the positions of secular-office holders, hence the unconstitutionality of the IRS code on the matter.
  • We are not rich and wouldn't be looking for a fight regardless. What we cannot do is compromise our faith (which seeks to harm nobody, quite the contrary).
  • We render unto Caesar what is Caesar's. We render unto God what is God's.
  • When Caesar says to us that unless we shut up about the unrighteousness of Caesar's policies and practices, we will lose the ability of people who donate to us to declare their donations as deductions on their federal and state income-tax returns, we say to Caesar that we cannot shut up while exercising our religion in a very reasonable way.
  • We consider the IRS code on this matter as deliberate economic duress (a form of coercion) and a direct attempt by the federal government to censor dissenting, free political and religious speech.
  • It's not freedom of religion if they tax it.

And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute? He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers? Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free. (Matthew 17:24-26)

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  • Tom Usher

    About Tom Usher

    Employment: 2008 - present, website developer and writer. 2015 - present, insurance broker. Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration. Volunteerism: 2007 - present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.
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