Verify your facts. There is, for example, using vehicles donated as ambulances to transport nuns, and quite clear indication that it was never about the economics for her. She clearly was a power-hungry sadist.
In order to get a clue, you should look up "abstraction" some time. But if you are not interested in logic or science, then you apparently do not want a clue. Lugging science in with religion is a transparent insult though and not worthy of response.
I don't know a lot of strongly religious people (the few I know seem to be pretty fucked up), and the mildly religious ones I know seem to be well able to keep that from interfering with their lives. Most people I know are atheists and do not see any pressing need to change that. Of course, where I live religion does not have a place in public discourse or polite conversation, you have to actively seek it out.
As to "going to be tortured for eternity", the most theologically sophisticated version I have heard of that was to stay "distant from God" (with the other atheists), with a strong implication that you actually get to keep your individuality and do not have to get into bed with a creep for eternity either. While the whole model strikes me as exceedingly contrived, should that happen, I will be fine with it. And atheists are more interesting people to be with anyways.
Heheheh, nice. And exactly true.
A transparent attempt to discredit me without any factual value.
The trick with "logic" is used by a number of religions targeting people of higher intelligence. (For example there are quite a few Christian splinter groups that use it.) It works by establishing some axioms that corrupt whatever comes out of the logical process. As any logical conclusion is only as valid as the axioms used, this works well. Often this little fact is cleverly disguised. Logic does not give you truth in any meaningful way, that is the job of the axioms. So while your religion is more sophisticated than the average and targets a different group of people, it is just the same thing in a better disguise.
There really is no need for me to research your particular mental malady.
Reduced mental capability can in layman's terms be described as "stupidity". "Cognitive dissonance" is something else.
You presume these people are religious. Very likely they are not, but are "authoritarian leaders" instead (https://home.cc.umanitoba.ca/~altemey/). These people will do anything to dominate their followers, professing to a "faith" is a quite common technique used.
The joke did not. (And I did laugh, it is actually a nice one
As to requiring empirical evidence, requiring it in a
Eventually, wealthy and liberal societies come to an end for other reasons
Those 'other reasons' are pretty simple: Liberal and wealthy societies become complacent due to the ease of their lives, and that makes them neglect the principles and practices that made them powerful and wealthy to begin with.
The default human condition is poverty, misery and violence. Escaping that is rare, and it takes a special society to make wealth, power and security seem normal. Once wealth, power and security are seen as birthrights and not hard-won prizes, the parts of a society that make it special are neglected (because, hey, they're 'mean' and 'hard work'), and rot sets in.
Sticking around hasn't helped Manning any.
I think you're looking at "consequences" as a very black and white thing. Snowden is facing the consequences for his actions -- he's exiled from his country and may never be able to return. He's already sacrificed so much to do the right thing. Sticking around to be persecuted wouldn't help out any. He took the risk of being tortured, imprisoned, and even executed. Isn't that enough? That's the most we ask of our soldiers and then we declare them heroes -- we ask that they risk their lives. We ask that they risk sacrifice, not that they do sacrifice. Kamikaze pilots and suicide bombers have no place in the defense of our country. Why should the whistleblower be so self-sacrificial? Why is he not a hero for risking his life when that's the standard of valor we place upon ourselves?
It's not just a tax write off. By keeping his money in the foundation and the investments of the foundation, its a tax shelter.
He's no more altruistic than the big pharmaceutical companies. It's not really altruism when you stand to make a large profit. Gates just figured out that the charity business can be an extremely successful one -- it gives one the ability to strong-arm entire nations all while immune to criticism under the protection of "philanthropy." The Gates Foundation, like similar foundations, exists so those of his lineage will all be filthy rich no matter what and no individual will be able to screw it all up for the rest of the family. It's like a trust fund designed to last centuries rather than decades.
Your attack on televangelists is irrelevant. They're much more an analog to Gates than a dichotomy.
but unfortunately the Ukraine signed an agreement that they would disarm their nuclear stockpile with the agreement that the west would protect their borders.
Treaties like that caused WWI.
Simple, because they are morons. For the question at hand for those that really do not see the glaringly obvious: Recording sound to digital is orders of magnitude easier than making good OCRed ebooks out of print copies.
Switch on your brain and look at the reasoning I have given? If that is beyond you, then no citation will help. Some level of education and insight is required to be able to participate in these discussions. Unless you prefer to sound like an utter moron?