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Comment Re:Google Docs? (Score 1) 180

So we should boycott those companies because they support this new law that doesn't use Due Process. You can accuse websites and have them removed from the DNS. Or, you can post copyrighted material to sites you don't like to take them down. Because of the way the "law" is written, it is an attack mechanism and has nothing to do with piracy. Sounds similar to the Patriot Act in scope. Eventually you'll be able to use The Bill of Rights for toilet paper with laws like these.

Comment Re:Who gives a fuck? (Score 1) 180

According to the law it is about taking out websites you don't like. That is how it is implemented. Post somebody's copyrighted material on the site you don't like and then take it out. Or, just make the accusation, which is good enough to remove them from DNS, at least temporarily. No Due Process needed.

Comment Re:Bad. (Score 1) 932

higher oil prices (yeah, this may not be in their control...)

What if you kept adding to the money supply with Quantitative Easing? The price of oil is tied to U.S. dollars. Increase the supply of dollars and the price of oil has to go up. Of course this applies to anyone buying oil so you can export inflation globally. Counterfeiters are only locked up because they don't work at the FED.

Comment Re:kind of like the police (Score 1) 869

No belief is required when the proof is readably available. So I'll restate belief. Belief is faith in things unmeasurable and or having no obvious effect.

By your previous comment, you have defined belief to exclude anything supported by any kind of evidence. So, why should I see belief as anything other than irrational?

I call my it my religious belief, but do understand that others consider it an irrational belief. It's always been that way.

The point is that anything with any relevance in our world will have a measurable effect, even if it is not visible to the naked eye.

That is pure opinion. It requires that I believe you can measure anything, with current technology, for it to achieve relevance.

Actually, I never said "measurable with today's technology", but if you claim to believe in an X, which never in any way effects anything, then X is irrelevant. If X affects Y, but Y cannot be proven in any way to exist or to affect anything, then X is still irrelevant.

I don't think X has no effect. In fact, the reason people believe in God is because they feel it has a large effect in people's lives.

Consider Newtonian Physics. Newton came up with formulas that, for the first time, modeled orbital bodies. Then we get to the 20th century and go to the moon, but we can't use Newton's equations without the X of Einstein's Space Time Relativity math. The differences are very very small but important. Only recently were we able to create an experiment that physically proved Einstein's theory. There are even smaller things, such as hidden subatomic particles, that may increase our understanding of gravity and even allow us to manipulate it someday. That X, that we don't know about, may have the biggest beneficial effect in all of human history.

Knowledge increases at a linear rate when compared with what we do not know, which increases at an exponential rate. For every new discovery a scientist makes, the finding will generate at least another 10 questions. As civilization advances, humanity becomes less smart as a percentage of knowledge.

Not true. If "the things we don't know" could be quantified, they would not depend on our ability to recognize them. In other words, someone who doesn't know anything about computers may not realize that they also don't know how to write a shell script, how to use microsoft office, or how to check an email. I would say that there are at least five things this person doesn't know.

  1. What a computer is
  2. How to write a shell script
  3. how to use microsoft office
  4. how to check an email
  5. This person also doesn't know that these pieces of information exist
  6. By learning a little about computers, someone is removing items 1 and 5 from the list. I would say that this person is not adding items 2,3,and 4.

Even if the list was finite, which it is not, the hierarchy is not. Let's add some branches.

_Computers
___Servers
_____Web
_____Disk
_____Database
___Desktops
___Laptops
___Embedded

_Shell
___Bash
_____Builtins
_____Variables
_____Redirection
___Ash
___Zsh

_Office
___Basic Formatting
___Headings
___Tables
_____Merging cells
_____Repeating column heads
___Syles

For each item you remove, N items are added to the unknown knowledge category. This happens as a person traverses the hierarchy and drills down. The branches exist even if we choose to ignore them. An individual may choose to stop learning, but humanity continues onward. The growth of unknown knowledge appears exponential even in this small list. If you graph percentage of what is known and unknown over time it is very discouraging.

It should be noted that, in the real world, there are many invisible branches in the knowledge hierarchy. This occurs at the leading edge of scientific discovery. Scientists believe, with complete certainty, that unknown and currently unobservable knowledge exists. You would probably call that a rational belief as I would.

So, you can ask for evidence all you want. You'll just never get it in some areas, especially where God requires belief. And, if you do get evidence, it will likely come too late.

So far, the story doesn't make sense. I don't see why a god would create people who are capable of dishonesty, and then treasure the inability to defend against that dishonesty?

We have freewill. You can choose to lie or speak the truth. People combat dishonesty by speaking the truth. I do not know anyone who treasures the "inability to defend against that dishonesty."

And why would a god be so worried about whether people believe it exists, while trying so hard to make it appear that it doesn't?

God hopes you believe and is very sad if you don't. He's not hiding, humanity has received a very long document detailing just about every subject. You may have seen His churches in your area or around the world or met some of the millions of followers. But, if you want to meet physically you're options are limited.

What we have is a story that make little sense, is supported by no evidence, and is used to control the behavior of those who believe it.

So God is controlling my behaviour, lol, if only that were true. Ah, the evidence thing again. No proof will be given. If people had proof some will still reject it. Says that in Luke 16:19-31, it's a short read with a great punch line.

To use a bastardized variation of Pascal's wager, I can either wager my freedom on a gamble that seems high risk, or wager an afterlife that may or may not exist. By choosing atheism, I am choosing not to gamble away the freedom I know I have, in hopes of a prize that may or may not exist.

High risk? Lost freedom? Do you live in China or the Middle East? I live in the U.S., where it says our freedoms come from our Creator right in the Declaration on Independence. It also says our rights are inalienable, meaning no one has the right to take them.

Choosing atheism does have several disadvantages. Your rights are not given by God because He doesn't exist. There is no absolute right or wrong so you have relativism. With relativism everyone's values have equal weight. So, if someone thinks you shouldn't have free speech, and they are in power, it is perfectly legitimate to take that right from you. They could kill this very discussion, legalise child molestation, of follow any evil desire. How could we argue against anything without some divine basis for the law? And yet, there's something worse. With no afterlife there's nothing to look forward, no point to doing anything, just suffering and dying. What would happen to society if we take these attitudes to their logical conclusion? If is too frightening to contemplate.

There is a better way and I'm not giving it up even if this place does become like China. I'm amazed by the gift offered and the cost of it. It was, is, more than anyone deserves.

Have the last word if you want it.

Comment Re:kind of like the police (Score 1) 869

Funny how the definition you linked doesn't say "requires no proof" or anything close to it.

2. confidence in the truth or existence of something not immediately susceptible to rigorous proof: That's not close? The example for 1. something believed; an opinion or conviction: a belief that the earth is flat. Seems pretty clear. What empirical proof did they have that the earth was flat?

Suppose you are talking with a friend while waiting for an elevator. Your friend is distract by your intelligent discourse and the door opens. Opps, there's no elevator but your friend proceeds to board the elevator. Would you try to save your friend or keep the information to yourself?

.then you can't use it for a "belief" that the elevator isn't working.

Guess you didn't understand. I was asking whether you would save a friend if they were in danger, not whether you believed the elevator was working or non-working. The word "belief" is not even used in the above context. As you said previously, this is some kind of trap if you answer, I'll explain. Basically, I was curious if you had compassion for others and would intercede if you felt it was important? While no one can claim this is just a Christian concept it is something the Bible does teach. Is it still a trap to answer? Would you consider Christian compassion an anchor around society's neck?

Both Thomas Jefferson and Ben Franklin were world renown scientists of their era. And, yes I know that Ben was Deist in his youth, but he got better. lol. Jefferson certainly had doubts, like anyone else, otherwise he would not have told us to "Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because if there be one he must approve of the homage of reason more than that of blindfolded fear." There are also times when he did not doubt.

"God who gave us life gave us liberty. And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the Gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath? Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that His justice cannot sleep forever; That a revolution of the wheel of fortune, a change of situation, is among possible events; that it may become probable by Supernatural influence! The Almighty has no attribute which can take side with us in that event."

--Notes on the State of Virginia, Query XVIII, p. 237.

"I am a real Christian – that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus Christ."

--The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, p. 385.

Here's another [quote] that shows how the founding fathers were NOT eager to shove Christianity down everyone's throats. [your quote from Jefferson]

They certainly wouldn't be Christians if they tried. People have to make up their own mind. When God's protection for the U.S. finally disappears, from all the people rejecting Him, the freedoms we enjoy will disappear also. That's what happens when you lose your anchor. But, this could be you're utopia, who knows?

Well, that's it for me. It's obvious neither of us will be changing our minds. The last word is yours if you want it.
Later

Comment Re:kind of like the police (Score 1) 869

Belief requires no proof, I will never accept your redefinition of it, nor should anyone else. You certainly may follow whatever religion you choose. In the U.S., our First Amendment rights allow you to follow your beliefs freely. And the Declaration of Independence plainly states, that your rights come from our Creator, Kind of ironic. You may even believe there is no god OR that there are cosmic unicorns, neither of which would require proof to be a religion. In fact, if there were hard evidence of unicorns we could state categorically that no belief in them is necessary.

Belief is required in religion, proof is required by science. These concepts DO NOT cross over no matter how much you wish them to.

90+ percent of the Forefathers believed in the Bible and were Christians. Thomas Jefferson carried the words of Christ in his pocket through out his adult life. He considered them the purist teachings of Christianity. Funny you should bring him up.

Christianity was our moral foundation which is why Congress ordered Bibles printed and distributed to Americans twice, Congress always opened with prayer, and church services were held in the Congress building on Sundays up until the Civil War Reconstruction. It is our American heritage.

Comment Re:kind of like the police (Score 1) 869

I don't believe in black holes. They exist because of scientific evidence that shows their orbits, masses, and light distortion properties. No belief is required when the proof is readably available. So I'll restate belief. Belief is faith in things unmeasurable and or having no obvious effect.

The point is that anything with any relevance in our world will have a measurable effect, even if it is not visible to the naked eye.

That is pure opinion. It requires that I believe you can measure anything, with current technology, for it to achieve relevance. There's no way that can be true. Consider what we could measure in the 1400s, 1700s, 2000s and what technology will exist in the 2200s. Are there things that do not exist now because we will learn of them in a century? Do they have no relevance because current science can not measure them?

Knowledge increases at a linear rate when compared with what we do not know, which increases at an exponential rate. For every new discovery a scientist makes, the finding will generate at least another 10 questions. As civilization advances, humanity becomes less smart as a percentage of knowledge. It is a very humbling experience.

So, you can ask for evidence all you want. You'll just never get it in some areas, especially where God requires belief. And, if you do get evidence, it will likely come too late.

Comment Re:kind of like the police (Score 1) 869

You did not answer the question. Pick any hypothetical situation you want, where you could save someone, and tell me if you would warn them or let them perish.

So you have to have empirical evidence to "believe" a religious claim. If there were empirical evidence, that would prove the claim and it would be a scientific fact. Surely you understand that the two concepts are mutually exclusive.

Belief that there is no God is also a religion as you can not prove such an entity doesn't exist. Certainly you're not going to tell me you've travelled the universe and can provide us with empirical data from the trip. Once you believe there is no God, no absolute right or wrong, you quickly realize that every thing is relative. In that world, your opinion is just as valid as mass murderer or serial rapist, your life is completely pointless, and there is nothing to look forward to. These people become so miserable they try to convince others to suffer with them. It is incredibly sad.

I'm am certainly glad most of our Forefathers did believe in God. It allowed them to create the most successful form of government in the history of man and all based on the Bible. Weren't the Forefathers critical thinking people?

Comment Re:Yes, I know (Score 1) 520

On the other hand, the Republican Party is at this point completely taken over by megacorporate interests,

Like letting GE write their own legislation so they don't pay any tax. Or, setting the payouts for Fannie and Freddie to UNLIMITED? Or, continually rewarding friends on Wall Street for failure. Unlimited payouts means unlimited corruption. Sure seems like the current guy has "magacorporate" interests. Which party got all that legislation through?

What you'll find with corruption is that it is a see-saw which swings back and forth. Since 1776 it has been a war. When one side becomes too corrupt American's swing the other way. It is a check and balance the Forefathers didn't plan for but turned out well.

Comment Re:Yes, I know (Score 1) 520

If Obama could ignore Congress, he would have:

-closed Guantanimo (closure blocked by "bipartisan"--but mostly Republican--majority in House and Senate removing funding for any transfer, as well as forbidding the transfer to anywhere inside the US) -passed a stimulus bill that actually invested the majority of its money into job creation, rather than half into tax breaks for the rich (a "compromise" made with Republicans to keep them from stonewalling more than they already did) -given us a public healcare option (blocked by thirty-nine Republicans plus Joe Frickin' Lieberman whose state houses the headquarters of most major health insurance companies) -written a banking reform law with teeth (again, rendered toothless by forty Republicans)

You're dead on! It could have been a lot worse. But, don't give up we still have QE. They are printing money like you wouldn't believe, driving up the price of oil, which is tied to the U.S. dollar, and inflation at the same time. All on a global scale. The effort he has put into bankrupting our economy is so impressive I'm not sure we'll make it to the next election. So, don't worry, Obama may just stay in power forever.

As far as progressive taxes go, I'm not a thief and believe stealing is a sin. If you do believe in stealing and took everyone's income including all corporate income it would cover the budget for about one year. Enjoy Eat the Rich. Then the U.S. is bankrupt again with no source of income, which isn't a problem, because, that's the plan.

Comment Re:kind of like the police (Score 1, Insightful) 869

That doesn't mean being anti-religious, but certainly one would hope that with critical thinking people would realise that such beliefs are best kept as a personal thing...

Are you are a "Seeing is believing" kind of guy? Belief is: faith in things unseen. Critical thinking people know that, because, seeing is proof and has nothing to do with belief.

Suppose you are talking with a friend while waiting for an elevator. Your friend is distract by your intelligent discourse and the door opens. Opps, there's no elevator but your friend proceeds to board the elevator. Would you try to save your friend or keep the information to yourself?

Comment Re:The reason for this (Score 1) 377

Details? You want details? Who has time to troubleshoot every distro when a different one will work? That's the beauty of Linux. I guess you could look at which kernel modules are in the ram disk images and compare them across distros, but wouldn't it be easier to just insert another Live CD? It certainly has saved me a lot of time taking the path of least resistance.

Comment Re:The reason for this (Score 1) 377

The only way I could get my scanner to work was with Fedora, Ubuntu hasn't been able to find it since 9.04. The real trick with Linux is to keep trying different distros until you get one that works with the hardware you've got. I have another computer that only likes Mint, not Ubuntu, not Fedora. My friend could only get his computer to work with PCLinuxOS. My sister's computer prefers Ubuntu and wouldn't run Fedora. After you work with several different computers you'll learn to have a stack of live CDs.

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