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Comment: Re:The Harsh Light of Day (Score 1) 132

by turgid (#46800951) Attached to: Google Aids Scientology-Linked Group CCHR With Pay-Per-Click Ads

It's no more or less believable than any other religion. Do you think people really believe that a dead guy came back to life? How about an entire ocean was suddenly parted so the good guys could get away and then collapsed again on the bad guys? Or that the earth is 6000 years old? Or that the guy who created the entire universe 12 billion years ago and billions of light years large is really really concerned about if human penises wind up in human vaginas before the correct ritual is performed?

You can sort-of understand why ancient religions came about and stuck. People in general, without education, before the formulation of the Scientific Method, living in a very uncertain world where starvation and disease were all about (and life was short and harsh) would invent supernatural explanations for things and perhaps like to believe that there was someone looking over them in judgement all the time.

However, there is absolutely no excuse for Scientology to be as big as it is. It was conceived as a cynical exercise in demonstrating that gullibility, ignorance and superstition, which are fundamental parts of human nature, are every present and easily exploitable (for money) and that society has not advanced to the point that the human race has outgrown its primitive cultural roots.

You have to hand it to L Ron, it was a dastardly,cynical plan to make money out of the stupid, and it has been a soaring success.

As they say, a fool and his money are easily parted. There are a lot of Hollywood actors involved...

Comment: Re:Frist pots (Score 1) 265

by metlin (#46796049) Attached to: I expect to retire ...

But it's you who sees religion where there isn't any. Why else would you call it "Calvinist"?

You should consider doing some reading, especially the writings of Max Weber -- "The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism".

In American history, the work ethic that places value on hard work and frugality is often ascribed to the puritans. It is by no means unique to them -- if I had brought up Asian Tiger Moms or the Jewish work ethic, someone else would have jumped on that, ignoring the rest of my argument.

But historically and culturally, the puritans were known to place a higher value on being good, hardworking people than on the ceremonies of religion. In fact, their whole idea is that being a good and useful member of society is a far better display of being "good" than going to church or confessions. In that sense, they have effectively distanced themselves from the traditional ceremonies of religion, despite the origins of the term (which is also why the new GOP has a bastardized concoction of values that admire both Jesus and capitalism).

In any event, I certainly think there is value to that worldview (hard work and frugality), your religious affiliations (or the lack thereof) notwithstanding. Perhaps I should call it the Horatio Alger work ethic, as Neal Stephensen calls it.

All right, all right. I'll stop having a beef with you.

Eh. You do realize that I am an American, right?

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Journal: This should be one of those "I told you so" moments... 1

Journal by Timex

...but I won't say it, even though I'd be justified in doing so.

I was just looking through the beta for Slashdot (which I don't like, by the way) and saw a "Hall of Fame" page. I looked at it and this was one of the most popular stories of all time. It was posted when Obama was elected the first time.

Time is an illusion perpetrated by the manufacturers of space.