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Comment Re:Why Try (Score 1) 30

And I agree that the financial industry (and anyone else who stores anything of value) would have to abandon the SSN as a key to access to our assets, but we'd just have to come up with some other replacement. We won't be able to share everything (all information) like that until we're all ready to share/give anything of ours to anyone else without question - in some kind of utopian community, where nobody wants to be better than their neighbor when it comes to physical wealth. We're still a little ways off from that...

Comment Re:Why Try (Score 1) 30

Did you just mean making SSNs public? They should be public info, like our names/address, but the number is being used as both an ID (by some) AND the password (by others). It should only be used as a ID key; utilizing it as a password is asinine.

If you meant ALL information public... That would be ok as long as it remained as anonymous data (which makes it worthless). Once it becomes "information" (grouped into meaningful data about something or someone), no thanks. If you want to, go ahead - but we'll be expecting all of your dick picks be posted alongside everyone else's - with names, addresses, phone, email, @twitter name, facebook account, etc.

Comment Re:DV (Score 1) 535

And people thought 2012 was bad... Obama and Romney were both far superior to either candidate this year.

The sad part is that a lot of people here would STILL take a dump on Mitt Romney's head if he had entered the 2016 race. (He'll forever be the "what could've been president" - especially when Chinese historians look back on our failed democratic experiment.)

Comment Agreed (Score 1) 535

I installed Mint on my wife's ancient Dell laptop for her and it does everything she needs (luckily we're not PC gamers.) If push comes to shove, I'll go with a personal Mac (like my work machine).

After two decades, I can finally and honestly tell myself I never need to run a Windows PC again. Windows 7 is the end of the line for me, and just in time considering MS's new business philosophies about privacy.

Comment Re:I'm totally shocked... (Score 1) 614

or needing two incomes to raise a family.

Mostly agree, but this one point is factually incorrect. Throughout American history, there has only been one era where it possible for a one income family to pay the bills - the post-WWII generation. It was a statistical outlier. The rest of the time the USA has been a two income country - whether it was on a farm or in a city. Everyone contributed.

Comment Re:Not so fast, there... (Score 3, Interesting) 614

A few possible rabbits (mostly bad):

1) WWIII (which would have to stay conventional and our side would have to win - though casualties would be in the hundreds of millions around the world).
2) US government bankruptcy (this destroys the fiat dollar and a generation's savings, but the gov't can no longer can run up debt that squeezes discretionary spending.)
3) A second "black plague" that culls the herd around the globe and humble everyone enough so they'd be more willing to help each other out and cut people's dependence on less efficient, government-sponsored socialism.)
4) Some new technology that creates such wealth and comfort that average people no longer have to work and capitalism is transformed into something completely different.

My money's on #3.

Comment Re:Standard of living (Score 1) 614

compared to what you can get for a few hundred bucks and $30 a month.

Can you eat (or live in) that cell phone?

And inflation over the last 20-30 years has changed. Instead of mostly increasing quality or value to increase price (and thus profits), manufacturers have embraced quality cuts - like drug dealers that cut their cocaine with mystery powders. Processed foods are increasingly "processed" (even sugar is thrown out for cheaper HFCS). Metal, HQ parts are traded for plastic. Product sizes are shrunk. Instead of solid homes, we get shoddily-made stucco + chicken wire boxes with finger-jointed studs. And so on... All to feed the Wall Street beast we've sold our 401K souls to...

But I guess it is easier to find Pikachu...

Comment Re:The behavior is the public health problem (Score 1) 822

You probably won't see this, but... (If you do, this is all I'll say in response.)

A letter from a 70 was circulated years ago that specifically detailed what sexual acts were "appropriate" and which were not. Oral sex being a a key bullet point, and part of the commentary was "I can't believe anyone even had to ask this--you should know better that those things are dirty and offensive to god...".

I don't know how long ago that was and I don't have the letter, but that guy was clearly wrong and pushing his personal beliefs and views on others that had no basis in doctrine. And 70s aren't infalliable and have been known to be excommunicated from time to time (I know of one for sure).

There are dozens of micro-cultures within the church itself. They range from..."

There are various cultures, but the Mormon cultures aren't the Mormon doctrine - which sticks to following the basic teachings of Jesus in the scriptures. And again, nobody in the church is perfect - but anyone who thinks that wife-swapping or other sexual intercourse level acts outside the bonds of marriage, or only talking about sex in hushed tones behind locked doors, is pretty messed up and could use a little professional counseling.

JS did not just practice polygamy. He practiced polyandry--*sharing* women and wives *already married and committed to other men*.

I have never seen or heard that he took other men's wives from them and reassigned them to himself or others - for whatever reason. If that was really verified as fact, I seriously doubt that South Park would've passed on such salacious/juicy material for their "dum de dum dum dum", JS-ripping episode.

On your manuals "white-washing claim", I've been teaching Primary (kids) and/or Gospel Doctrine (adults) for almost a decade and it is all very basic and kinda boring/simplistic at times. As a teacher, I add what I can from Institute manuals to spice up the history/background, but there's just not enough time. Besides - When I focus on the details, they go over most adults' (and all kids') heads. They don't know the Scriptures well enough to even debate basic points (Bible or BofM) let alone historical facts they'll never recall. And that type of academic study does little to help them during the week when they're bombarded with all kinds of various ideas/philosophies (good or bad) as soon as they go home.

Um, no. It's precisely because if everyone knew it all they would all *leave* the church. Controlling the flow of knowledge is integral to keeping the wool over the eyes. Make no mistake about it.

Not true. Us teachers, local leaders, bishops, stake presidents, etc. don't hide anything. There's just no time to cover it all, and it's not that important. Extra study time for church history is up to each family, and it's all out there. I've never seen this wool pulled in my entire life, including years in which I was excommunicated and exposed to the "other side of the tracks", philosophically speaking.

You do sound pretty bitter - which is sad, no matter what you believe now. All I can add is to testify that the Holy Ghost (and the Spirit) are real (and not just vague emotions, as you described them in your regex). And in the end, it's ultimately just your word against mine. People have to individually decide who is right by testing it out for themselves. To do this, they just have to follow the Gospel of Jesus as best they can, and do it with an honest and open heart (without guile). If they do that, they will absolutely see what comes of it in their own lives. There is no other way to settle any debate about it.

Comment Re:Subversion of the West (Score 1) 1080

Just like traffic laws exist to make sure the sociopaths don't have free reign, the equivalent of economic "traffic" laws need to exist.

They already do - see the The Sherman Anti-Trust Act of 1890.

They're just not being enforced anymore due to lobbying efforts (and probably bribing) in D.C. It's as if the law doesn't even exist, and the growing pains of the late 19th century have all been forgotten.

Comment Re:The behavior is the public health problem (Score 1) 822

I totally get the frustration with our church. Sex has been a taboo topic for WAY too long within the church, and there has been harm done by the unwillingness to be open about it. For example, some temple-endowed members in the past believed that they had to have sex in their temple garments for various absolutely ridiculous reasons (making sure that conceived children during that intercourse were sealed to them, keeping covenants made in the temple that they misunderstood, etc.) As a member, that just sounds crazy - but nobody told them otherwise, so they just believed it.

Then you'd have the occasional bishop (the equivalent of Catholic priests in the LDS church) that would give engaged couples sex advice that had NO BUSINESS GIVING young couples. "I'm not supposed to say this as your bishop, but sex_act_X is evil. Avoid it altogether." Unbelievable behavior that a young couple wouldn't have the courage to challenge, but an older Mormon couple would respond to with, "Kiss my ass, bishop. I'm going screw my wife/husband up and down, any way that I like."

However, that is finally changing. The latest generation of growing, active Mormons are more educated about sex than my generation was - and light years ahead of those before them. And that's not because they've seen porn; it's because of the Internet in general (the free flow of information in general) and changing sexual mores. I've personally attended professionally-taught seminars held at church buildings (that our stake set up for us) to talk about and learn about sex addiction. Young couples can even attend pre-marriage classes at LDS institutes where they openly discuss real sex in marriage, and teach ideas that can be summed up with, "If your spouse is OK with it, that's fine. Be open with your communication about everything, and have fun with each other." I'm sure that there are many older Mormons who would've LOVED that kind of open education when they were in their teens and early 20s.

The saddest fact of the matter is that historically Joseph Smith drank like crazy and sexed up women like crazy. If he were alive today he'd be a registered sex offender. He shared men's wives, stole men's wives, smoked, drank, and was quite a slick talker. This is all documented in their own church archives--but most members still have on the blinders of cognitive dissonance. SLC even supported a brothel for decades in the early years--frequented by members in leadership and non-members alike, and they made their own booze back then too.

Now hold on. Joseph Smith wasn't a wife abusing/using, sex-addicted drunkard - he just wasn't perfect and clearly made some mistakes. Yes, JS had multiple wives, and IMO polygamy sucks. While it had its purpose at that time, polygamy makes it way too easy to abuse women - as the disgusting, not-affiliated-in-any-way-with-real-Mormons FLDS cult under that child molestor Warren Jeffs has shown. Yes, JS probably smoked and drank some (the banning of alcohol and tobacco wasn't even canonized as "live by this" doctrine until well after JS's death, and drinking untreated, non-alcoholic fresh water back then was actually dangerous in places).

And on this brothel story: It's quite possible there was one in Salt Lake City. I'd like to see any evidence of a brothel anywhere in Utah that was maintained by the LDS church and frequented by church leaders.

Also consider this: If people are converted to the LDS religion via the Spirit of God (that's what the Book of Mormon promises), why do they HAVE to study it? It's not part of the sales pitch. The Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost are the keys they rely on.

And the church history is open to anyone to research it if they want to know. The reason the church isn't teaching every element of its 186 year history because there's frankly there's no time. There's too much doctrine to refresh and church business to go over every week in our three hour block of Sunday services to waste time studying trivia like when JS filed for bankruptcy, when he went looking for gold, how many wives he had, etc. It's the Spirit that converts people to the truth - not logic and church history. If that was the qualifier for any church to be legitimate, none would exist.

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