Week in the prism: analyzing key events through the “Your space” exhibition
People who enjoy the company of others love it, generally. Water seeks its own level. And BTW while I'm obviously a prime target for religion conversion efforts, those efforts are very, very muted. They do take no for an answer. I know this from experience. Sorry Mormons but the whole premise of the religion is rather silly-ancient America and golden tablets I am sure there are some well meaning people in it but tithing,the power structure based on wealth and shaming of those who question the religion is downright unChristian in my view.
The brainwashed young folk who show up at my doorstep uninvited get a lecture on the worship of Baal and that they should follow suit as Baal will return on day. The Mormon Church is facing three massive challenges.
First, Mormons are having fewer children. Instead of having six, eight or more children, Mormon families are beginning to normalize with respect to the number of spawn they produce. Second, missionary work is yielding diminishing returns. Thank the internet for this.
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Any reasonable person upon contact with the missionaries will begin looking around online for information about Mormonism. As soon as this happens, most of those contacted will want nothing further to do with it. Third, as highlighted by this article, Mormons are quitting in droves.
Thank the internet for this, too. It's easy to find online support from others who have been down the path. Further, the demands of the faith are also increasingly incompatible with modern life: Mormonism makes inordinate demands of time and money on its membership. Oh, yeah, and then there's the story itself, which crumbles under the slightest scrutiny.
About years. Charlatans, criminals, con men, money grubbers, skilled manipulators of men So it's fascinating to watch this slow-speed train wreck from inside Utah. It's sweet schadenfreude to see Mormonism continue to lose influence, membership and stature. Let the exodus continue. Don't misunderstand me. None of this is to suggest that there aren't many, many good people inside Mormonism. Anyone who knows Mormons knows that by and large, they're good folks.
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The good news is that once they leave, they're still good folks. They might even be a bit better. I understand that people want to be part of a club, a group, a community.
Teaching – Red Church
People often identify with a city, a region, a country etc. What I don't understand is how anyone can accept the thought-dictatorship of a church, on matters of life and death, and based on nothing more than submission. The church believes in ongoing revelation by its leadership, and it distinguishes between core principles and social practices.
It also believes that God gives people what they can handle at the time--hence the big difference between the Old Testament's code of conduct and the New Testament's. All Christian religions have to deal with that gap. If you read Leonard J. Arrington's The Mormon Experience, a social history for educated non-Mormons like me , he explains that polygamy reflected a big difference in the numbers of female adherents and male ones, as well as the need--long before FDR created the social safety net--to deal with widows and their children.
The church gave up polygamy under threat of military invasion by the federal government, and it took decades to eradicate it from the general population, but ever since the mids polygamy has not been an issue in the church. Far more important, more recently, was the church's according second-class status to blacks. This wasn't eliminated until the 's, by revelation to the church's top leadership. They might say God felt they weren't to be given racial equality until they'd evolved culturally enough to accept it.
And now there's a black Mormon Republican representative in Congress. Now there's the issue of women holding the priesthood, which caused one female friend of ours to leave the church. I think it's a valid issue, but I will say that Mormons are taught to give women as much respect and authority as any conservative American subculture. With the plus that Mormon women and men are trained in public speaking from age 4 onwards, which in some ways is more important in daily life than whether your pastor is male or female. There would be no place to hide.
If this government ever became a tyrant, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the capability of this technology. I don't want to see this country ever go across the bridge.
I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return.
It was created [ by whom? We will come together to strengthen our intelligence capabilities to know the plans of terrorists before they act and to find them before they strike. In the aftermath of the September attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, bulk domestic spying in the United States increased dramatically. The desire to prevent future attacks of this scale led to the passage of the Patriot Act. In , " Total Information Awareness " was established by the U.
In , Mark Klein revealed the existence of Room A that he had wired back in He described it as a back door to the federal government in the systems of an unnamed wireless provider; the company was later independently identified as Verizon. The three telecommunications companies are working under contract with the NSA, which launched the program in shortly after the Sept.
The report failed to generate discussion of privacy rights in the media and was not referenced by Greenwald or the Washington Post in any of their subsequent reporting. Hank Johnson during a congressional hearing. Alexander testified that these allegations made by Wired magazine were untrue:.
Under construction by contractors with top-secret clearances, the blandly named Utah Data Center is being built for the National Security Agency. A project of immense secrecy, it is the final piece in a complex puzzle assembled over the past decade. Its purpose: to intercept, decipher, analyze, and store vast swaths of the world's communications as they zap down from satellites and zip through the underground and undersea cables of international, foreign, and domestic networks.
Flowing through its servers and routers and stored in near-bottomless databases will be all forms of communication, including the complete contents of private emails, cell phone calls, and Google searches, as well as all sorts of personal data trails—parking receipts, travel itineraries, bookstore purchases, and other digital "pocket litter. But "this is more than just a data center," says one senior intelligence official who until recently was involved with the program. The mammoth Bluffdale center will have another important and far more secret role that until now has gone unrevealed.
It is also critical, he says, for breaking codes. And code-breaking is crucial, because much of the data that the center will handle—financial information, stock transactions, business deals, foreign military and diplomatic secrets, legal documents, confidential personal communications—will be heavily encrypted Any communication that arouses suspicion, especially those to or from the million or so people on the agency watchlists are automatically copied or recorded and then transmitted to the NSA. General Alexander : "No, it's not.
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And that's from James Bashford? Johnson: "Yes. Does the NSA routinely intercept American citizens' emails? Alexander: " No. Alexander: "No.