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Where Is the Democratic Alternative to Forever War?
WilliamCharles comments on May 17, 2019:
Here is his C-SPAN debate. https://www.c-span.org/video/?458500-1/soho-forum-debate-israeli-palestinian-conflict=879=maj
I am not an Atheist, I am Agnostic. There is a difference, actually a huge difference.
WilliamCharles comments on May 16, 2019:
From: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell%27s_teapot "In an article titled "Is There a God?" commissioned, but never published, by Illustrated magazine in 1952, Russell wrote: Many orthodox people speak as though it were the business of sceptics to disprove received dogmas rather than of dogmatists to prove them. This is, of course, a mistake. If I were to suggest that between the Earth and Mars there is a china teapot revolving about the sun in an elliptical orbit, nobody would be able to disprove my assertion provided I were careful to add that the teapot is too small to be revealed even by our most powerful telescopes. But if I were to go on to say that, since my assertion cannot be disproved, it is intolerable presumption on the part of human reason to doubt it, I should rightly be thought to be talking nonsense. If, however, the existence of such a teapot were affirmed in ancient books, taught as the sacred truth every Sunday, and instilled into the minds of children at school, hesitation to believe in its existence would become a mark of eccentricity and entitle the doubter to the attentions of the psychiatrist in an enlightened age or of the Inquisitor in an earlier time.[2] In 1958, Russell elaborated on the analogy: I ought to call myself an agnostic; but, for all practical purposes, I am an atheist. I do not think the existence of the Christian God any more probable than the existence of the Gods of Olympus or Valhalla. To take another illustration: nobody can prove that there is not between the Earth and Mars a china teapot revolving in an elliptical orbit, but nobody thinks this sufficiently likely to be taken into account in practice. I think the Christian God just as unlikely."
How many on here either have decided to abandon major social media platforms (FaceBook, Twitter, ...
WilliamCharles comments on May 16, 2019:
Love connecting with like-minded activists on Facebook. Hate their heavy handed gatekeeping, even more so that my participation puts money in Zuck's pocket. They label political speech "hate speech" when discussing apartheid Chosanistan, but provide zero details when asked for. Very Kafkaesque. "How many fingers, Winston?"
Who Really Gains from the Gulf Ship ‘Sabotage’?
WilliamCharles comments on May 16, 2019:
Same as it ever was.
I am not an Atheist, I am Agnostic. There is a difference, actually a huge difference.
WilliamCharles comments on May 16, 2019:
There's a category of atheist that is essentially agnostic. :-----: "Negative atheism, also called weak atheism and soft atheism, is any type of atheism where a person does not believe in the existence of any deities but does not explicitly assert that there are none. Positive atheism, also called strong atheism and hard atheism, is the form of atheism that additionally asserts that no deities exist." https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negative_and_positive_atheism
A forgotten hero stopped the My Lai massacre 50 years ago today - Los Angeles Times
WilliamCharles comments on May 16, 2019:
I think of Animal Mother from Full Metal Jacket when he said, "Better you than me." One of the elements of psychological stripping in bootcamp is to blindly follow orders from superiors (the stipulations not to follow unlawful orders largely ignored) and the extent that group approval comes into play. It's an essential part of the mindfuck in conditioning people to kill strangers when told to by the state, regardless of the claims for the rationale. I feel it takes quite a bit of individual and moral courage to buck that indoctrination.
I'm curious to know if some of you can't help themselves saying " Thank God" or Oh my God", even ...
WilliamCharles comments on May 16, 2019:
I use "Oh my Glob" from Adventure Time.
Trump is always giving "nicknames" to people he doesn't like.
WilliamCharles comments on May 16, 2019:
The Mango Manchild.
Ok this really is a good one
WilliamCharles comments on May 15, 2019:
And sadly, he just might get a 2nd term if Establishment Dems run a warmongering corporate centrist again.
Flat Earthers, and the Rise of Science Denial in America | Opinion
WilliamCharles comments on May 15, 2019:
Still, having 9/11 thrown in there always catches my eye. I'd love to see scientific demonstrations of the physics of 9/11.
Atheists make up a wide variety of independent thinkers.
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
Insisting that arguments and debates are decided on their merits as much as possible. I consider much of the freethought communty engages in hand-waving with regards to the official 9/11 narrative.
In declassified document, CIA acknowledges role in 1953 Iran coup - CNNPolitics
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
This is doubly sad as Iran had quite a Westernized culture prior to their Islamic Revolution. It's one of the reasons those crying about Russiagate (itself largely unsubstantiated) are so annoying. Pure hypocrisy. :------: "WHY CAN’T IRAN have a secular, democratic government? It’s a question Americans often ask of their longstanding Middle East adversary — especially when they see images of anti-regime protesters taking to the streets of major Iranian cities and towns to demand greater freedom. Unlike citizens of the Islamic Republic, however, citizens of the United States tend to have short memories. The historical reality is that Iran did have a secular, democratic government, led by Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh between 1951 and 1953 — but Mossadegh was removed from power in a coup organized and funded by the CIA and Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service, also known as MI6. With a handful of exceptions — Madeleine Albright in 2000, Barack Obama in 2009 and 2015 — most mainstream U.S. politicians have little to say about any of this sordid history. In Washington, D.C., Iranian hostility toward the U.S. has long been treated as inexplicable and irrational, while the CIA’s role in the 1953 coup — which set off a chain of events that resulted in the rise of Iran’s ayatollahs and the Islamic Revolution of 1979 — has vanished into a memory hole. It was left to Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, of all people, to remind Americans of the catastrophic consequences of that coup in a televised debate with Hillary Clinton during the Democratic presidential primaries in February 2016: *Mossadegh back in 1953. Nobody knows who Mossadegh was. Democratically elected prime minister of Iran. He was overthrown by British and American interests because he threatened oil interests of the British. And as a result of that, the Shah of Iran came in, terrible dictator, and as a result of that, you had the Iranian Revolution coming in, and that’s where we are today. Unintended consequences.* What Sanders called “unintended consequences,” the CIA calls “blowback.”"
In declassified document, CIA acknowledges role in 1953 Iran coup - CNNPolitics
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
"The CIA has publicly admitted for the first time that it was behind the notorious 1953 coup against Iran's democratically elected prime minister Mohammad Mosaddeq, in documents that also show how the British government tried to block the release of information about its own involvement in his overthrow. On the 60th anniversary of an event often invoked by Iranians as evidence of western meddling, the US national security archive at George Washington University published a series of declassified CIA documents. "The military coup that overthrew Mosaddeq and his National Front cabinet was carried out under CIA direction as an act of US foreign policy, conceived and approved at the highest levels of government," reads a previously excised section of an internal CIA history titled The Battle for Iran."
Russiagate’s Goal Has Been Accomplished: The Democratic Base Loves War & Imperialism Now
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
The support for the saber-rattling against Iran largely bears this out.
First post on here, so be gentle.
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
Good luck to you. It must be difficult to step outside the group.
Do you have pictures on your refrigerator?
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
Not where I put mine. My sister has too many cute magnets in inconvenient spots on her fridge, and they're always getting knocked off and broken.
To the people that interact with my posts.
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4YYnz2-bsJo&t=5s
To the people that interact with my posts.
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
I have actually let Facebook friends know I'm cutting back on a lot of reactions as it puts money in Mark Zuckerberg's pocket. I'm so very tired of their arbitrary gatekeeping.
To the people that interact with my posts.
WilliamCharles comments on May 14, 2019:
Might as well get bonus points for 1st comment. πŸ˜‹
David Attenborough: Animals are a source of infinite fascination | New Scientist
WilliamCharles comments on May 12, 2019:
Debated using the term "love" in my anthropomorphizing of Earth, but we are an expression of that fecundity, and should be alarmed over our role in the extermination of so many others species that sprung forth long before we ever arose.
‘So Help Me God’ No More: Democrats Give House Traditions a Makeover
WilliamCharles comments on May 11, 2019:
Already GOP heads are exploding (it will likely make a good wedge issue for them). They want it both ways, as when courts rule the language is ceremonial, but they also insist it belongs so as to pay due reverence to their god.
‘So Help Me God’ No More: Democrats Give House Traditions a Makeover
WilliamCharles comments on May 11, 2019:
Some people are so insecure that they demand government endorse their particular irrationalism.
‘So Help Me God’ No More: Democrats Give House Traditions a Makeover
WilliamCharles comments on May 11, 2019:
I've always held IN GOD WE TRUST on the money or anywhere in public spaces is outrageous. It is either a lie as I have no "trust" in any god or gods, or it specifically omits me as part of the WE. Either way, it's wrong.
I've got a job interview today. I'm feeling pretty positive and excited about it.
WilliamCharles comments on May 11, 2019:
To add a little levity to what is often an anxiety producing exercise. πŸ˜„
The Evolutionary Mystery of Left-Handedness and What It Reveals About How the Brain Works - Brain ...
WilliamCharles comments on May 10, 2019:
Look forward to reading it in its entirety. Not a lefty, though with a few select preferences where the left is the dominant hand.
I am interested in opinions on this statement.
WilliamCharles comments on May 10, 2019:
“I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.” ~ Stephen Roberts
I am interested in opinions on this statement.
WilliamCharles comments on May 10, 2019:
I like a comparison I read saying there's no formal word for those without a belief in leprechauns. An "aleprechaunist" as it were. I also like that others have pointed out the subtle but important distinctions between non-belief, unbelief, and disbelief.
How Jonathan Sacks dumbs-down Jewish history to defend Zionism | Robert A. H. Cohen
WilliamCharles comments on May 10, 2019:
"Political language... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind." ~ George Orwell
War of words: why journalists need to understand grammar to write accurately about violence
WilliamCharles comments on May 10, 2019:
"Political language... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind." ~ George Orwell
War of words: why journalists need to understand grammar to write accurately about violence
WilliamCharles comments on May 10, 2019:
"All war propaganda consists, in the last resort, in subsituting diabolical abstractions for human beings. Similarly, those who defend war have invented a pleasant sounding vocabulary of abstractions in which to describe the process of mass murder." ~ Aldous Huxley
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 9, 2019:
"The Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes made a personal, riveting case for breaking up Facebook in a new essay published in The New York Times today. His argument hinges on the idea that Mark Zuckerberg is a “good, kind person” but one whose “power is unprecedented and un-American” and whose “influence is staggering, far beyond that of anyone else in the private sector or in government.”" https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2019/05/how-powerful-mark-zuckerberg/589129/?utm_source=facebook=edit-promo=social=2019-05-09T21%3A04%3A42=the-atlantic=IwAR0PjhQxKddEIKFnHkgV0sVaBD1hTT0exGI1PutCpv51hUSULRMzYKTvSug
I'm friends with one of my bus drivers (I've befriended more than a few over the years actually) and...
WilliamCharles comments on May 9, 2019:
Interesting observations.
I've got a job interview today. I'm feeling pretty positive and excited about it.
WilliamCharles comments on May 9, 2019:
May the globs be with you, DNB.
Who lives in Texas and how do you deal with your super religious family & friends?
WilliamCharles comments on May 9, 2019:
Regarding the Texas theme, my online friend Deborah Mitchell wrote "Growing Up Godless" and tells of her experience raising her kids in Texas, in addition to what others shared encountering religious prejudice. I'm even quoted in the final chapter. :-----: "I see a pattern where the randomness of human actions can be directed through probability for an overall cumulative and positive effect. All throughout our society there is a butterfly effect that we are most always oblivious to… I guess my message is to go boldly forth and increase the peace and love and know you are not alone. You may not always be aware of the others choosing to follow this same path as you, but they’re out there, and they’re making a difference.” ~ LanceThruster [from Debbie Mitchell's book "Growing Up Godless" - Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.] https://www.overdrive.com/media/1577971/growing-up-godless
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 9, 2019:
"Facebook’s current business model is fundamentally at odds with democracy and basic human rights. A company that claims to bring people together has been poisoned by a maniacal focus on mass collection of user data to satisfy advertisers. Hundreds of millions have had their privacy violated and their trust betrayed. Enough is enough. Mark Zuckerberg must go. For the longest time we’ve accepted as scripture that Silicon Valley founders had a divine right to lead the most powerful companies ever created. We need to burst this cultish idea. Shareholders realize the problem is at the top. They’re lining up to Vote “No on Zuckerberg” at the upcoming AGM. However, Zuckerberg has structured the company so that he has more voting power than all other shareholders combined. It’s clear we need more than shareholders to make this happen. We need an internet-wide vote of no confidence. Zuckerberg’s resignation would send a message to tech workers, government regulators, advocates, and all who hold Silicon Valley accountable that leadership at these companies is a privilege, not a right. “I know that we don’t exactly have the strongest reputation on privacy right now, to put it lightly,” Zuckerberg quipped at the recent F8 developers conference, forcing a guffaw. The audience was silent. Not even a chuckle. We’re not laughing any more, Mark. And we’re coming for your throne." https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/may/08/mark-zuckerberg-has-to-go?CMP=fb_gu=Social=Facebook=IwAR3GWOmJhparHeQOVs7Quw9v5L1Y60xalKT1wqB8wDbmpjURhRQVcF3rS50#Echobox=1557326965
Study: At least 78% of humanitarian aid intended for Palestinians ends up in Israel's coffers
WilliamCharles comments on May 9, 2019:
Imagine funding the forces the indigenous resistance was fighting. That is the reality of how the US bankrolls the brutality inflicted on the Palestinian people. Simply shameful.
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 8, 2019:
"Why does the spread of hate speech matter? Hate speech is a hot-button issue for Facebook users who get upset when they flag a post as offensive but Facebook says it does not violate its rules. On the other hand, Facebook has upset users by mistakenly identifying posts as hate speech and taking them down. For example, Facebook had to apologize to a black activist and author after failing to distinguish between the people spreading hate speech and those condemning it. How worried is Facebook about the corrosive effect hate speech can have on the Facebook experience? It's working on ways to stem the flood of hate speech. For example, some Facebook users were surprised recently to see “Does this post contain hate speech?” listed under every post in their News Feed. "This was an internal test we were working on to understand different types of speech, including speech we thought would not be hate. A bug caused it to launch publicly. It's been disabled," Facebook said in a statement." https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/talkingtech/2018/05/15/facebook-having-trouble-fighting-hate-speech/611702002/
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 8, 2019:
"Looking at the rules as a whole, ProPublica reports that Facebook developed the rules in reaction to specific actors’, such as governments and users, complaints. At one point, the rules were open-ended, including a general rule that said, “‘Take down anything else that makes you feel uncomfortable,’” says Dave Willner, a former Facebook employee, in the ProPublica report. Wilner revised the current rules to make them more rigorous. The result, Teichman says, appears to be patchwork constructed not out of some top-down ethical determination, but rather a list slapped together over time. “Categories get this hodgepodge when they're just the result of being stitched together out of complaints people made,” says Teichman." https://www.wired.com/story/facebook-hate-speech-moderation/
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 8, 2019:
"Revealing the guidelines could at least cut down on confusion about whether hateful content is allowed on Facebook. It isn’t. Though the guidelines also raise the question of whether the Facebook value system it codifies means the social network has an editorial voice that would define it as a media company. That could mean the loss of legal immunity for what its users post. Bickert stuck to a rehearsed line that “We are not creating content and we’re not curating content”. Still, some could certainly say all of Facebook’s content filters amount to a curatorial layer. But whether Facebook is a media company or a tech company, it’s a highly profitable company. It needs to spend some more of the billions it earns each quarter applying the policies evenly and forcefully around the world." https://techcrunch.com/2018/04/24/facebook-content-rules/
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 8, 2019:
"Facebook defines seven types of “attacks” that it considers hate speech: calls for exclusion, calls for violence, calls for segregation, degrading generalization, dismissing, cursing and slurs. For users who want to contest Facebook’s rulings, the company offers little recourse. Users can provide feedback on decisions they don’t like, but there is no formal appeals process." https://www.propublica.org/article/facebook-enforcement-hate-speech-rules-mistakes
When is it okay to say "I love you"?
WilliamCharles comments on May 7, 2019:
Not letting things progress at their own pace seems a bit like fishing for reciprocation, but it would probably be preferable, at least from my perspective, to qualify these feelings instead by saying things like, "I love spending time with you, I love your take on the world, I love your personality, etc." At this early stage, "I love you," seems to involve more questions than one might have later in the relationship. It's also an unfortunate reality that dating and partnering often pressures some people to try to "close the deal" as it were, out of fear the person they desire and have strong feelings for might "get away." That being said, I remember someone once pointing out, "emotions are neither good nor bad, they just *are*."
Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our ...
WilliamCharles comments on May 7, 2019:
Made me think of this for some reason. :-----: "Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go." – Oscar Wilde
Heartbeat Bill in Ohio.
WilliamCharles comments on May 7, 2019:
It's always been about the power to control and oppress.
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 7, 2019:
"Recently two of the elite digital priesthood, Tim Cook and Mark Zuckerberg, called for more privacy and regulation of the internet. Zuckerberg also promised that Facebook “will increasingly shift to private, encrypted services where people can be confident what they say to each other stays secure.” Both calls are brazen, self serving & cynical, and exercises in misdirection. The principles of trust, privacy & ethical behaviour were never high on their agenda as they grew their digital, social & cultural hegemonies. They’ve done little to protect our data-actually, legally speaking it’s their data-and that was the way it was always meant to be. Laws protecting our data have long since been undermined by a labyrinth of online contracts & terms and conditions that nobody reads, and what could be euphemistically called a light-touch regulatory framework." https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/05/06/big-tech-and-the-rise-of-surveillance-capitalism/
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 6, 2019:
After 3 days, almost half the time of the ban itself, I got the ruling from Facebook. It is considered hate speech. They provided their Community Standards link, but with no actual feedback, there's no way of telling what specifically crossed the line. That is the nature of repressing speech in the public square (corporate owned or not). Not knowing the infraction fosters self-censorship. In this case, the ultimate goal is to dissuade posters from discussing Israel on any negative light. Imagine discussing politics, and being hesitant to point out that the US commits war crimes. For some in here, that's no big deal because Zuck isn't the government. With that attitude, expect more of the same. Maybe over issues important to you someday.
Hello single, non-custodial parents! My very sweet boyfriend is needing some advice on seeing his ...
WilliamCharles comments on May 6, 2019:
So many factors involved in this. Very good of you to be so supportive. I know next to nothing about autism, but maybe starting with, "I want you to know I love you," and then sitting quietly and following the boy's lead. The non-verbal communication of a smile might go a long way. I'm also wondering if asking for a hug (edited to add "or a fist bump"), if the boy wanted to, would be appropriate. No pressure, but rather just mention it to him how good it would make his father feel and leave it at that. Maybe just the request itself would mean something, particularly by establishing up front the boy's autonomy regarding that action. I'm thinking there's no magic combination of words in this situation.
Going to a First Communion ceremony tomorrow as an unofficial "uncle" not related by blood.
WilliamCharles comments on May 6, 2019:
Something that came to mind witnessing that shared experience by the adherents. :-----: "Vonnegut found another “echo of the Sermon on the Mount” in the work of Mark Twain. In a talk he gave on the hundredth anniversary of the completion of Mark Twain’s “fanciful house in Hartford, Connecticut,” Vonnegut declared himself “a skeptic of the divinity of Christ…confirmed of my skepticism by Mark Twain in my formative years.” He then cited these words of the author as “a profoundly Christian statement, an echo of the Beatitudes:” :---: When I find a well-drawn character in fiction or biography, I generally take a warm personal interest in him, for the reason that I have known him before—met him on the river…. :---: “The river, of course, is life,” Vonnegut said. “Mark Twain is saying what Christ said in so many ways: that he could not help loving anyone in the midst of life.”" https://imagejournal.org/article/kurt-vonnegut/?fbclid=IwAR3uH_8aeQqtA3VBLRnvXS2kxazqPKqAQO8QPFU1DB40Ujc964yFKfclXzg
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 5, 2019:
The nature of shadow bans and the power of algorithms to control the free flow of information can be quite pernicious, particularly as they quite often operate beneath the surface and below the radar. The ability for government moneyed interests to do this to greater effect and with less accoutability will only increase. That makes it imperative to discuss the many ramifications now. :----: "Murray closed by adding a very brief comment of his own: “There is no room to doubt the evil nature of the expansionist apartheid state that Israel has now become. Nor the moral vacuity of its apologists in the western media.” Since this was, of course, a damning statement about mainstream ‘news’ media in The West, these mainstream ‘news’ media, including Facebook, can be expected to dislike that — and they evidently do. On April 25th Murray headlined "Blocked By Facebook and the Vulnerability of New Media”, and he reported: This site’s visitor numbers are currently around one third normal levels, stuck at around 20,000 unique visitors per day. The cause is not hard to find. Normally over half of our visitors arrive via Facebook. These last few days, virtually nothing has come from Facebook: What is especially pernicious is that Facebook deliberately imposes this censorship in a secretive way. The primary mechanism when a block is imposed by Facebook is that my posts to Facebook are simply not sent into the timelines of the large majority of people who are friends or who follow. I am left to believe the post has been shared with them, but in fact it has only been shown to a tiny number. Then, if you are one of the few recipients and do see the post and share it, it will show to you on your timeline as shared, but in fact the vast majority of your own friends will also not receive it. Facebook is not doing what it is telling you it is doing – it shows you it is shared – and Facebook is deliberately concealing that fact from you. Twitter have a similar system known as “shadow banning”. Again it is secretive and the victim is not informed. I do not appear to be shadow banned at the moment, but there has been an extremely sharp drop – by a factor of ten – in the impressions my tweets are generating." https://russia-insider.com/en/media-criticism/top-uk-journalist-craig-murray-blocked-facebook-after-criticizing-israel/ri23351?fbclid=IwAR18EDuyaDSrosL6LjEP8T4g4v3FBkKhZad3WUZHB8BST_wdr1mJG9tge3s#.Wv-sf0L82Hs.twitter
Going to a First Communion ceremony tomorrow as an unofficial "uncle" not related by blood.
WilliamCharles comments on May 4, 2019:
In the lions' den.
Going to a First Communion ceremony tomorrow as an unofficial "uncle" not related by blood.
WilliamCharles comments on May 3, 2019:
I was quite proud of myself when I penned this and still feel it's quite valid. I was the "atheist chaplain" (staff advisor to the student atheist group) at my university. I worked at making godlessness part of the "godview" in the Office of Religious Life. We live in a world where coexistence is beneficial and can help all come to new understandings, particularly with regard to freethought. :-----: "People are =/= to their religion I am most definitely an infidel in that I have no belief in any god or gods. A person’s individual godview is the most basic right possible that a human being can have. I personally reject Islam, Judaism, and Christianity (among others)…but do not reject Muslims, Jews, and Christians. A person’s religion and religious culture are most predictably based on their family of origin, where they were born (geography), and when they were born (i.e. no Xians pre-Christ). I stand with all people on the planet willing to work together as a species to live peacefully with each other and our environment. That does not change regardless of the actions of some who think their ‘godview’ justifies any number of horrible acts. I reject those who use such acts to demonize people who are damned for nothing more than ‘guilt by association.’" ~ LanceThruster
This is brilliant.
WilliamCharles comments on May 3, 2019:
This will be quite an issue heading into the primaries. Already ready seeing many, many Dems wanting to soft pedal the flaws of various candidates. It didn't work in 2016, and won't work in 2020. The "Blue no matter who crowd" only act as if that's true as long as the "who" is not a progressive. A coalition truly out the beat Trump (the DNC's very own Pied Piper), would acknowledge that a progressive would pull in votes a centrist will not. Frighteningly, but also tellingly, it appears that Establishment Dems would rather lose with a centrist than win with a progressive.
Just random thoughts.
WilliamCharles comments on May 3, 2019:
I am always gobsmacked by the need of religionists to have their various mythologies validated by acts of the government. It comes across as the height of insecurity. I became active in church/state separation because I was tired of them treating irrationalism as the default position.
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 2, 2019:
Loudly... and often.
What to say when hijacked by two born agains in public
WilliamCharles comments on May 2, 2019:
I often tell them quite sincerely, "You are of the belief that you have the key to the true nature of the universe and all of existence based on what you consider revealed knowledge by a divine being. Instead of being happy with that, you seem more worried that someone else doesn't buy into your particular mythology. Even if you think you're making your appeal out of concern for my well-being, it won't work. I'm familiar with your belief system and reject it as being logically inconsistent and unworthy of serious consideration. And I can't pretend to believe what I don't just to be safe. Your God would know."
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 2, 2019:
Another piece showing some feel he's mocking Israel. The biggest beef seems to be that it's making Israel's staunchest allies look bad. :-----: "It's that type of lunacy that has mostly tickled Israelis. Besides exposing the prejudices of his targets, Baron Cohen's humor has also uncovered the fetishized version of Israel that many of its supposed staunch supporters on the religious right believe exists. Nearly all were drawn to the interviews under the guise of a fake pro-Israel award for their support, when in fact all it did was expose their ignorance." https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/israelis-respond-sacha-baron-cohens-who-is-america-character-1131713
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 2, 2019:
Here a piece where the writer claims Baron Cohen is too hard on Israel, that they're not like that anymore. :-----: "My wife and I were young Israeli volunteers in a small North American Jewish community. One day, we got an invitation to a lecture by a retired Israeli military officer. He was in America trying to boost Israel’s image. And his tools were his thick Israeli accent, his brash manner, and his captivatingly dry observations. “You know,” the retired lieutenant colonel told his crowd of mostly elderly Canadian Jews, “we could throw all the Arabs into the Jordan. But the world won’t let.” I assume he meant Jordan the country, not Jordan the river, but who knows." https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/09/opinion/does-sacha-baron-cohen-understand-israel.html
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 2, 2019:
One of the things I often find disheartening about many humanists/atheists/agnostics is their seeming inability to look at Israeli Zionist crimes in a fair and rational manner. I feel part of this stems from the perception that Arab/Muslim cultures are hopelessly backward and that Israeli Jews embrace modernity in a somewhat familiar way and that their religionism is somehow less threatening. For myself, the religionism issue is the first thing to set aside. This is about what was done to indigenous people by colonizers. I don't need to assess the merits of competing godviews to see that the colonizers' theft and plunder of the Americas was wrong. The same holds true for Zionist land theft. Their holy books are not real estate deeeds from their god. To maintain such would make you as ridiculous as the Republican atheists in here, ignoring the overreaching religiosity and fake piety of the GOP, mostly because they're willing to demonize Muslims/Arabs/Palestinians and support Israel.
Just wondering here.
WilliamCharles comments on May 2, 2019:
I feel they (most the evangelical strains at least) have long been about wielding power and cozying up to those they see as either doing their bidding or aligned with them on their pet issues. 9/11 allowed the nation and government to get their hate on in a more openly bombastic manner as well as demonize the "other" in a way they're more than willing to do. I think the most touching and powerful counterpoint to this I've seen, was a documentary about a group of US women that lost their husbands on 9/11, and traveled to Afghanistan to see how the people we were bombing lived.
MAH.
WilliamCharles comments on May 2, 2019:
Re: Baron Cohen's Zionism. :-----: "There is one descriptor that is too infrequently applied to him: Zionist shill. Plenty of writers have noted Baron Cohen’s ardent Zionism, but few have suggested that his Zionism should cast him in a negative light (“Before ‘The Dictator’ and ‘Borat’, friends recall, Sacha Baron Cohen was a very nerdy, very funny, Israel-oriented guy,” The Times of Israel, 11 May 2012). Even fewer have examined how that Zionism visibly influences his thematic choices and public role-playing. His commitment to Zionism is troublesome for numerous reasons: it supports the historical and current dispossession of Palestinians, situates him as an advocate of militaristic state power, calls into question his ethical commitments, and places him in Hollywood’s safest political space, that of fealty to Israel, a space in which the title of maverick loses all significant meaning." https://electronicintifada.net/content/sacha-baron-cohen-buffoonish-ideologue-israels-service/11333
Yes, Hillary Did Steal the Democratic Primary in 2016 | Soapboxie
WilliamCharles comments on May 1, 2019:
Re: Biden, particularly if more DNC cheating takes place in this primary. Could the plan be corporate stooge Democrat beats the much reviled Trump, having most people breathing a sigh of relief for that relatively minor shift of fortunes? Any primary rigging to shut out popular progressives will be ignored, the newly elected "centrist" will do little to rock the boat overall, particularly since the court is already stacked and they can claim their hands are tied, and the same GOP fucks rubber stamping the Trump agenda (along with Dem quislings) can go back to hating Dems as usual but without the Trump albatross to defend. This would be a truly bipartisan effort the quash the progressive "menace." The narrative seems to fit so far.
Yes, Hillary Did Steal the Democratic Primary in 2016 | Soapboxie
WilliamCharles comments on May 1, 2019:
The focus on Russia has sucked all the air out of the room. Nothing has been done about GOP voter suppression, the proven vulnerabilities of electronic voting, and the potential for media to again place their thumb on the scale. The Comcast guy (owner of MSNBC) did a big donor fundraiser for Biden. MSNBC added 3% points onscreen to show Biden in the lead over Bernie, that their own poll numbers showed otherwise. The poll also happens to not include *any* younger voters. These are the same type of "mistakes" as when Fox puts a "D" next to the name of a Republican caught doing something creepy or illegal.
Thank you to everyone who supported me during my suspension.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 30, 2019:
Hair Fuhrer totally fits. And Hitler *needs* to be quoted in these dark days. It is the model currently in play. :-----: "All propaganda has to be popular and has to accommodate itself to the comprehension of the least intelligent of those whom it seeks to reach." - Adolf Hitler
Thank you to everyone who supported me during my suspension.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 30, 2019:
Some good ones collected here. I lay claim to the Mango Manchild. Also Mayor Tiny Hands as I find it infuriating to think of him as competent for any level beyond that. http://www.thehypertexts.com/Donald%20Trump%20Nicknames.htm
Bob was kind enough to paint this for me! lol
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 28, 2019:
They're just wearing all white in a snowstorm eating vanilla ice cream. Good likeness.
i just need to vent, i have been attempting to meet people on a dating site, POF, i have a profile, ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 27, 2019:
That brings up an interesting thought. Regarding things considered supernatural or paranormal, I like to point out that it only needs to be true once to be true. For instance, if aliens have actually visited this planet, it doesn't matter if all the other sightings are false. I consider myself a skeptic, in that the simplest explanations are usually most likely. An Occam's Razor approach. Many years ago, my friends and I along with my little dachshund mix went hiking in the local foothills. Prior to leaving the house, we had all taken a very powerful mind-altering substance and had already reached an intensely altered state by the time we reached our secluded spot. There was plenty for my dog Willy to explore and no danger of him getting lost so everyone just enjoyed their buzz. After a bit, I wondered where Willy went, and on a lark, called for him in my mind only. He wasn't anywhere in view, but quite promptly showed up with a, "What is it?" look on his face. Again, completely without speaking, I just answered in thought, "Nothing. I just wanted to know where you were." He then proceeded to wander off to explore some more. I then told my friends what had just happened and told them I was going to test my hypothesis. We waited a bit, and then I let them know I was going to call him again the same way, and he showed right up. I would then actually speak after he'd come and say, "OK, just checking," and off he'd go again. The final test, again with witnesses, was to call him right back after sending him off, which he did, this time with an exasperated look of, "What?!?" Again, I told him just checking and he was back to exploring on his own. From that day on, we talked about it as that time I called my dog Willy using only my mind. I didn't/we didn't all off the sudden become ardent boosters of ESP, but it was an interesting occurance (anomaly?) nonetheless. Others said we only imagined it as we were high AF, but it was actually handled with a fairly scientific approach, even considering the circumstances. Anyone else ever had a similar experience?
"Never forget that you are one of a kind.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 27, 2019:
I was once on a panel discussion at my university put on by the Harvard Veritas Forum. I was the atheist panelist along with representatives of the three major religions (as they're referred to). The question being discussed was, "Does life have a purpose." I answered that the "purpose" of life is embodied by what it will do next. For some living beings, it also includes contemplation of the "why." I added that evolution brought forth you, and that no one is capable of being a better "you" than you. You win hands down. I like to think the second part mirrors the Oscar Wilde quote a bit, and the first part, a little of Bucky Fuller.
Read, read, read.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 27, 2019:
"A book is made from a tree. It is an assemblage of flat, flexible parts (still called "leaves") imprinted with dark pigmented squiggles. One glance at it and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for thousands of years." ~ Carl Sagan
Sanders/Gabbard 2020
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 27, 2019:
Tulsi would make a great VP (or POTUS even) as well as an excellent choice for Secretary of State.
Sanders/Gabbard 2020
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 27, 2019:
And lo, the prophecy did come to pass. πŸ˜„
We're on a road to destruction if we don't make changes.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 27, 2019:
I like it. Run it up the flagpole and see who'll salute.
Does anyone else who's de-converted from religion struggle with logically knowing / accepting ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 27, 2019:
I also like to post this as far as still acknowledging our shared humanity. :-----: People are =/= to their religion I am most definitely an infidel in that I have no belief in any god or gods. A person’s individual godview is the most basic right possible that a human being can have. I personally reject Islam, Judaism, and Christianity (among others)… but do not reject Muslims, Jews, and Christians. A person’s religion and religious culture are most predictably based on their family of origin, where they were born (geography), and when they were born (i.e. no Xians pre-Christ). I stand with all people on the planet willing to work together as a species to live peacefully with each other and our environment. That does not change regardless of the actions of some who think their ‘godview’ justifies any number of horrible acts. I reject those who use such acts to demonize people who are damned for nothing more than ‘guilt by association.’ ~ LanceThruster
The Mueller Report Indicts the Trump-Russia Conspiracy Theory | The Nation
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 26, 2019:
So, a question for all those claiming Russian collusion has been established. Why then wouldn't Speaker Pelosit support impeachment? Doesn't she care about protecting our democracy from foreign interference (as long as that doesn't include Israel, of course)?
Does anyone else who's de-converted from religion struggle with logically knowing / accepting ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 26, 2019:
My official agnostic anthem. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nlaoR5m4L80
Biden boosters telling me another "hold your nose" candidate is the path to victory.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 26, 2019:
@genessa seems to have taken her bat and ball and gone home. So much for rational discourse.
The Mueller Report Indicts the Trump-Russia Conspiracy Theory | The Nation
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 26, 2019:
There is no doubt that Trump is corrupt AF, but this snipe hunt may result in giving Cheetolini a 2nd term, courtesy of the same damn folks who managed to put him in office in the first place. Heckuva job, DNC.
Biden boosters telling me another "hold your nose" candidate is the path to victory.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 26, 2019:
They created this monster. They fearmonger as they confirm his shitty, corrupt judges (fast tracked no less), and give him $80+ billion more in military spending than he asked for (though he is supposedly an existential threat too dangerous to be in office).
"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened." - Dr. Seuss
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 25, 2019:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=2LiPMEqkKpY
Capone was one of the most infamous gangsters of the Prohibition Era.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 25, 2019:
Awesome analysis.
Biden boosters telling me another "hold your nose" candidate is the path to victory.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 25, 2019:
But I don't want *any* centrism!
MoA - Russiagate Is Really Finished
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 24, 2019:
I posted this in Crooks and Liars and someone responded that I had clearly not read the Mueller report. I replied with this. :-----: Have you read the Wikileaks emails? You probably have, but ignore it anyway. Russiagate is sucking all the air out of the room. It isn't the slam dunk Dems think it is and may just wind up giving Dolt 45 a 2nd term. Nail him on obstruction and any other illegal crap he pulled, but be consistent. Dems should look at GOP vote suppression, but probably fear opening that can of worms would shine a light on their primary shenanigans. Trump is on them. The DNC ran a shitty candidate (by cheating) that could not beat one of the shittiest candidates in modern memory. It wasn't the goddamn Russians.
"In our obscurity - in all this vastness - there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 22, 2019:
"We shade our eyes and scan the decay. We know that this place, this country, this planet, is not the same as the last time we looked. There are more bodies. And fewer other things: choices, unlocked doors, democracy, satisfying jobs, reality, unplanned moments, clean water and a species of frog whose name we forget, community, and the trusting, trustworthy smile of a stranger. Someone has been careless, cruel, greedy, stupid. But it wasn’t us, was it? We were inside, just watching. It all happened without us — by the hand of forces we can’t see, understand, or control. We can always go in again and zap ourselves back to a place where the firestorms and tornadoes and wars are never larger than 27 inches on the diagonal. We can do nothing out here. Why bother?"
"In our obscurity - in all this vastness - there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 22, 2019:
And sometimes it's hard not to be overwhelmed with "compassion fatigue." There's so many things to fret over, it is almost paralysing.
"Fight them to the end, until the children of the poor eat better than the dogs of the rich."
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 22, 2019:
D'oh!
C-SPAN currently has war criminal Condoleeza Rice in a panel pontificating on US foreign policy.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 21, 2019:
Also shown on C-SPAN are tributes to Columbine from the time on this 20th Anniversary. It was unnerving to see pedophile Denny Hastert speak before Congress about the importance of protecting children. So many congresspeople gave speeches about ensuring this does not happen again. Wonder how that worked out. Rep. Tom Tancredo (R - CA) turned his time on the floor into a sermon, saying that the problem is not choosing to worship God versus godless nihilism.
Easter is a perfect day to watch Richard Dawkins videos.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 21, 2019:
Chris Hedges too, as he represents a love worthy of emulating, as he rebukes those promoting doctrines of hatred.
C-SPAN currently has war criminal Condoleeza Rice in a panel pontificating on US foreign policy.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 21, 2019:
She belongs in the dock at the Hague.
In Invocation, Atheist Tells Iowa Lawmakers That Good Ideas “Are Evidence-Based” | Hemant Mehta ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 21, 2019:
"Be aware of this truth that the people on this earth could be joyous, if only they would live rationally and if they would contribute mutually to each others' welfare. This world is not a vale of sorrows if you will recognize discriminatingly what is truly excellent in it; and if you will avail yourself of it for mutual happiness and well-being. Therefore, let us explain as often as possible, and particularly at the departure of life, that we base our faith on firm foundations, on Truth for putting into action our ideas which do not depend on fables and ideas which Science has long ago proven to be false.” ~ Kurt Vonnegut, Palm Sunday: An Autobiographical Collage Kurt is quoting his great grandfather Clemens Vonnegut.
Franklin Graham Cites Death-to-Gays Bible Verse in Post About Pete Buttigieg | Hemant Mehta | ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 21, 2019:
Franklin sure knows how to shake the money tree of his cult of hatred.
Catholic Church assures billionaires that none of their Notre Dame donations will go to poor - The ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 21, 2019:
Thank Glob for that, eh? Glob must really love the poor. He made so many of them.
In your view, what is the single most significant/important US/Western cultural development in the ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 21, 2019:
Seriously? I think it's the exposing of DNC chicanery and the Wikileaks revelations in general. Establishment Dem warmongering in service of their corporate masters is an idea whose time is long overdue for the dustbin of history. This sets the stage for a sea change. I hope we're up to it.
I just joined the group "Republican Atheists" because I'm fascinated just what sort of animal that ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 21, 2019:
I will admit that the "not debating" part didn't last all that long, but only because most all that took place there was people reinforcing their own prejudices. The only way to get much of a response other than the "Hallelujah Chorus" was to offer some sort of rebuttal or opposing viewpoint.
"When the truth loses you friends... get better friends." Jimmy Dore
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 20, 2019:
In a different video, Jimmy indicated he was quoting/paraphrasing John Lennon, which is good to know. Lennon took so much heat for his anti-war stance.
Hey, y’all! I’m feeling much better today, but I can definitely tell when the muscle relaxer ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 19, 2019:
Be well. Rest and recuperate.
Lest we forget...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 19, 2019:
OK... some make you think you might be treading on thin ice.
Lest we forget...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 19, 2019:
Pretty much.
I just joined the group "Republican Atheists" because I'm fascinated just what sort of animal that ...
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 19, 2019:
I just got booted from the group (Republican Atheists) as the originator/moderator claimed I was trolling the group. I defy anyone to find evidence of that. I contend they are gutless ideologues too cowardly to actually support their own assertions. Not only can I no longer post, I've been blocked from even reading it. Ladies and gentlemen... I give you your present day Republican Party, and their useful godless idiots.
I'm a substitute teacher.
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 19, 2019:
Good for you. I am open about my own non-belief/unbelief/disbelief as I feel it is important to represent humanism to others. Though occasionally I'll get a bit of pushback, as well as efforts at conversion, the overall effect is quite positive. I found it touching that one believing co-worker said to me, "You're the most Christian person I know," to which I jokingly replied, "You take that back or I'm reporting you to HR."
I had this one night stand😁
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 18, 2019:
Doin' it on the furniture!
A moral question- Should I do work for someone that has ties to the kkk?
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 17, 2019:
Police department?
Re: Notre Dame Cathedral Yes, but is our freedoms burning?
WilliamCharles comments on Apr 17, 2019:
"Considering all of the issues that threaten both human civilization and animal life on the planet, it seems foolish that people around the world would prioritize replaceable cultural monuments over human life and the health of the planet that they call home. However, this type of behavior is typical for our species, and is precisely the reason why we have problems like war, poverty and endangered species." https://truththeory.com/2019/04/17/billion-dollars-has-been-raised-for-notre-dame-cathedral-but-we-cant-fix-the-planet/?fbclid=IwAR2bFXluM9lOxF_I2e1FQW0Qw0tCsCkYQTX7xMlu6zn0PoTpf3RI66YwKAM

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Agnostic, Atheist, Humanist, Secularist, Skeptic, Freethinker
Open to meeting women
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