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Comment: Re:compensating? (Score 2) 287 287

With massive unemployment and young men and women looking to start a new career; there will be plenty of opportunities to work for oppressive regimes at curtailing freedom for the established ruling elite. It's like the intellectual and societal form of the broken window fallacy.

World war can't come soon enough!

Comment: I don't like Wired (Score 1) 41 41

Am I the only person here who doesn't like Wired?

I remember back in the mid-to-late 90s when a friend had a subscription. It seemed like bunk to me--full-color glossy pages and a kind of self-congratulatory almost outside-in look at computers and geek culture. My friend (an artist and self-avowed geek) loved the magazine, while I (a programmer) just never got the appeal. I liked the programming magazines that gave code samples!

I can't say I've seen an issue of Wired in probably 10 years, but judging from the Wired blog sites like "GeekDad" it seems to me that it's still full-on geekporn rather than a real technical magazine. I'm quite sure that my experiences 15 years ago have biased me against Wired, but are my impressions at all correct?

Comment: Re:I hereby ascertain the bankruptcy of Greece. (Score 2) 1145 1145

I have a question for you. The few times I have been in Europe specifically for business, the businesspeople in Switzerland and Belgium who I met with spoke rather derisively of the "southern Europeans." Certainly from the comments on Slashdot today there seems to be a lot of anger and, from my perspective, prejudice (justified or not is another question) against the southern European countries. The southern European countries also seem to just be doing what they've always done.

So my question is--given this, why did banks lend so much to Greece? This seems to me as criminal as the subprime loans in the US.

Comment: Re:What they are cheering about? (Score 1) 1145 1145

I have nothing against the Greeks - I like them - they are kind, warm and similar to slavian people. But they need to learn that paying taxes is what makes you country function. They need to learn that if they are into some international community they can't lie about their finances to get a credit. And so on.

Slavian people? Are you referring to Slavs? The Greeks of today basically ARE Slavs (this is, of course, debatable), after the huge Slavic migrations during the late Byzantine and Islamic periods.

Comment: Re:Not a mistake (Score 1) 230 230

You're 100% correct, and I wrote poorly. We should belittle ISIS and their twisted beliefs.

What I was trying (again, poorly) to say was that we trivialize their beliefs at our own risk. President Obama saying pretty much "that's not true Islam" might make for a nice feel-good quote, but what's the point of the statement? Does he think ISIS is going to rethink their beliefs because a Christian from the US thinks they're interpreting the Qur'an wrong?

Comment: Re:Lawrence (Score 2) 230 230

You might try learning the difference between evangelical and fundamentalist Christianity. Nothing of what you said is a good generalization of evangelicals, which is why the fundamentalists don't like them much. Evangelicals are about the church (and especially the financial success of it), while fundies are often as you describe. It's fun to remind fundies that they are also, technically, evangelicals (an evangelical church is simply one that does not have an exclusive territory assigned, but must compete with other churches of the same faith for followers and tithes).

I disagree with everything you just wrote. There is a considerable overlap between fundamental and evangelical Christianity. No part of the definition of evangelical stresses that they are "about the church" or the "financial success" of the church. I think you are conflating evangelical with Pat Robertson / Jerry Falwell breed of televangelist?

It is not true that an evangelical is just a church that does not have an exclusive territory assigned...that's jut not it at all.

I don't really care to get into a pedantic argument over definitions of different Christians sects, but on quick google for "what is an evangelical" (there's of course the WIkipedia page too, with a bullet point definition, see, e.g., the rise of fundamentalism in evangelical Christianity: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evangelicalism#Fundamentalism) comes up with plenty of pages, from the horses mouth so to speak, that talks about what it means to be evangelical.

Comment: Re:Lawrence (Score 3, Informative) 230 230

That is complete nonsense.
Everyone I'm aware about doing bible interpretations is fully aware about the fact that the bible was written by humans.
We all know Jesus was not "walking on water" as the amaraic phrase only means "to stroll at the beach".

With all due respect, "everyone you're aware of" does not constitute probably much but a tiny fraction of the diversity of religious belief in the world. Just google "Bible divinely inspired" or see the Wikipedia page https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biblical_inspiration or view a local evangelical or fundamentalist church service. Many Christians do believe that while the Bible was written by humans, it was divinely inspired and as such is the literal word of God.

This belief is even more universal in Islam, where there is much less of a history of critical or literary theory reading of the Qur'an. It's a tenet of faith that the Qur'an was "revealed" to Muhammad one revelation at a time. There is a concept of the "Umm al-Kitab" -- the mother book -- a sort of celestial ur-book of wisdom and religious teaching that sets there floating in the ether. The Qur'an is but a portion of the umm al-kitab that God chose to reveal to Muhammad.

Care to point some out? AFAIK the new testament has not much to say about sexuality.

Sure. Most are in the Pauline epistles (that's actually why I mentioned Paul in the section of mine you quoted), but they appear directly as quotes from Jesus too. Here are just a few:


http://www.biblestudytools.com/nkjv/matthew/passage/?q=matthew+5:27-28 -- Looking at a woman with lust is the same as adultery. (Matthew 5:27-28)

http://www.biblestudytools.com/nkjv/matthew/passage/?q=matthew+5:31-32 -- Divorce is as bad as adultery. (Matthew 5:31-32). (You can also get out of these two that adultery is bad)


http://www.biblestudytools.com/nkjv/1-corinthians/passage/?q=1-corinthians+5:1-5 -- Sexual immorality is a big deal. (1 Corinthians 5:1-5)

http://www.biblestudytools.com/nkjv/romans/passage/?q=romans+1:26-32 -- More on sexual immorality. Those practice such things (one of such things being ... well, read it and see!) are "deserving of death." (Romans 1:26-32)

You can find probably dozens more.

Comment: Re:Lawrence (Score 2, Insightful) 230 230

My understanding of ISIS (mostly from a Muslim Arab coworker, so of course my "expert" could be wrong) is that they're "religious" in the same way Scientology is: they have all the trappings of religion, but it's all quite contrived. They emphasize whatever parts of scripture helps their goals and ignore the rest in a very obvious and transparent way that fools almost no one. It's not that they're murdering "moderate Muslims" per se, they're simply murdering anyone who speaks up about how evil they are, or simply speaks against them, whether on religious grounds or any other grounds.

I would argue that that's true of all religions, and everybody. If you can show me an entirely internally consistent religion and a person who follows 100% of those teachings exactly, I would be shocked! Everybody emphasizes whatever part of the scripture they want and ignore other parts. Some conservative Christians glide past the "Do not judge" part and spend a lot of time focusing on sexual immorality! Some liberal Christians glide past the many parts of the new testament that deal with sexual immorality and spend a lot more time with the "do not judge" part! That's just religion for you. Remember, even a religion as seemingly peaceful as Buddhism had adherents who really perfected the modern concept of the suicide bomber.

Personally, I was offended when President Obama attempted to define what true Islam was, and who was a true Muslim and who was a faker. How colonialist of him to attempt to be the arbiter and definer of native religion!

There are many other places in the world where IMO the problem really is religious fundamentalism, but those guys aren't raising armies and conquering vast territory. Even in Afghanistan it's just one tribe after another, not a united fundamentalist army.

I think you're partially right and partially wrong. The issue is that Islam to a very large degree overlaps with parts of the world that have maintained pre-modern tribal ties to a degree that most of us in the east and west are no longer familiar with. Thus, in Afghanistan, it's not that the fundamentalists aren't united, but that many tribal coalitions have been unified through fundamentalist Islam.

I think it's a mistake to confuse the problem with fundamentalist Islam in other parts of the world and other cultures with ISIS and the Arabian Peninsula.

I don't. We could have a nearly infinite discussion about the history of Islam, the history of the Middle East, the rise of the West, and the economic and social morass of much of the Islamic world. We would actually probably end up agreeing about a lot of these things! Militant fundamentalism used to be a part of Christianity, but was stamped out a long time ago. Militant fundamentalism in Islam has yet to be eradicated. If you think the trappings of Caliphate, the revival of the 'Uthman dinar and other potent symbols of early Islam, and the persecution of historical enemies exist in a vacuum, I think you're very wrong.

Have you ever heard a evangelical Christian Bible study or lesson? It's interesting. They will focus to an incredible degree on each word of the verse they are studying. They will talk about the word in the original Greek (or Aramaic, etc.) and its connotations, how it compares to other Biblical accounts, etc. We're talking nitty gritty minutia and some interesting historical analysis. BUT, they also start with the inviolable precondition that the Bible is the literal word of God and divinely inspired. So, forget any line of reasoning like "Maybe Paul said XYZ because of his Jewish heritage and don't forget that the Roman governor had been stamping down on ABC, so if the early Christians wanted to avoid being persecuted, they had to act this way." The correct answer is always "Because God."

Same for ISIS. They are VERY grounded in history, but they are very one dimensional. Belittling (or disregarding the validity of) their beliefs is a huge mistake, however.

Comment: Re:Outage.. (Score 1) 369 369

Something similar. Took almost an entire ISP down. Had a few servers with about 200 domains running bsd located at thier "data center " which was more like a couple shelve and a long bench. Anyways, they where supposed to be running a script to verify two servers were mirroring the other two. I got lazy and stopped checking the logs for it and eventually they stopped running the backups or the script to verify it. One day a drive failed and about 50 domains were off line. I couldn't remote into any server and started getting a run around from their techs so i loaded up all the backup servers i had and a file share with copies of everthing and drove the 200 miles to the isp.

Turns out one of their techs tried to fix the problem by pulling a good drive from one of the other boxes but wasn't the one mirroring the bad drive. This then caused issues in the raid for the good box which he tried to rebuild by pulling the a drive from the mirroring box and ended up breaking all the configs. The worse part is that he thought he had the right tools to fix everything at home and instead of going to get them, he loaded my servers up and took them home.

So i show up, realize i have to start from scratch, set up a couple makeshift boxes that likely wouldn't survive a month, then i connected an old NetWare server. I enabled SMB on the two new servers and started transferring files from the NetWare server. Next thing i know, someone came in and started rebooting all the routers. I looked and jokingly said a reboot is not a fix.

Well, this went on for about two hours with about half a dozen people working on it, making phone calls and claiming they were under some DOS attack. My file transfer was finished, i disconnected the NetWare server, and it all magically stopped. I had misconfigured the SMB and created a packet storm that their routers and modems gladly repeated and multiplied to the point it almost melted their network.

My real servers finally showed back up so i loaded them up, built new ones and had a t3 ran to a commercial building near the house that became their new home. There was a lot of finger pointing and talk about compensation but it got dropped when i reminded them that the only reason i had access of that kind was because they failed to fulfill a contract obligations and then screwed the pooch trying to recover.

Comment: Re:No, it ISN'T free speech. (Score 1) 265 265

And there's a problem with your concept too. You do not know god doesn't exist. All you know is that you have not been convinced that one or more God's exist or existed at any time. And no, saying if god exists do X to prove it does not mean one doesn't exist when X doesn't happen any more than i wouldn't exist if you demanded i took a dump on your door step while you sleep as proof i exist and i didn't.

The worse part. In your fervor to proclaim a scientific untruth (science cannot prove a god doesn't exist, only that one is not needed ), you miss the entire point of the clause. However you were created, a common inborn desire of man is to strive for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness which is not limited to a select few born into the right families or royalties , or bestowed upon by some king or whatever for the success or pursuit in those goals.

All through human history, this is a desire of the human race. Choices and ideas on how to achieve it varies, but it has been present. People naturally desire it. The fact that they were created (in however that came about ) means this exist.

"Because he's a character who's looking for his own identity, [He-Man is] an interesting role for an actor." -- Dolph Lundgren, "actor"