Monday, 16 January 2012

determining "truth" with feelings and emotions

do you think feelings and emotions are an infallible way of determining truth? then maybe you havent heard of hypochondriasis:
"This debilitating condition is the result of an inaccurate perception of the body’s condition despite the absence of an actual medical condition"

Friday, 13 January 2012

feelings vs facts in the mormon church

i saw this on the exmormon yahoo mail list:
My former RS press whom I am very close to, came over today and demanded to know what is going on with me. We talked for awhile. She bore her "testimony". Later she facebooked me and said her heart is breaking and she wished she could give me her testimony because her feeling is that everything good she has is because of the church. This was my response. I thought you might like to read it.
The feeling that something is true cannot replace cold hard facts. When DNA evidence proves that the modern Indian is not a descendant of israelites all the good feelings or testimony in the world cannot make it true. When egyptologists translate the papyri and inform us that they are only funeral documents and not the Book of Abraham that Joseph smith claimed, all the good feeling in the world cannot make it so. So we have discovered that the Book of Mormon and the Book of Abraham are not accurate translations of ancient records and therefore cast doubt on the prophetic calling of Joseph smith.
well said.

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

my views on relativism and sophism
Their philosophy contains criticism of religionlaw, and ethics. Though many sophists were apparently as religious as their contemporaries, some held atheistic or agnostic views (for example, Protagoras and Diagoras of Melos).
I also criticize religion, law and ethics and also morality. I am atheist.

Relativism is sometimes (though not always) interpreted as saying that all points of view are equally valid
i think it would depend on what the point of view was about, e.g. you dont value a car mechanic's point of view on a specific surgical procedure as much as you would a surgeon's.

Relativism is the concept that points of view have no absolute truth or validity, having only relative, subjective value according to differences in perception and consideration
if this were taken to mean that there is no such thing as truth or fact, then i would disagree. if it is restricted to views about non-testable, non-verifiable, non-scientific claims and personal preference (e.g. the "best" music artist) then i could agree with it.

Friday, 6 January 2012

the NDAA H. R.1540 signed by barack obama does not specifically exempt US citizens from indefinite military detention without trial

the whole problem is that the legislation is not written in "plain english", it's vague and is written in a way so that the administration/military can interpret it in any way that suits them best. section 1021 is the key issue. it's not long at all so read it for yourself and see how many different ways you could interpret those words.

page 265 of the pdf, section 1021.

so here's my attempt at plain english:
(a) military can detain anyone defined in section b
(b) people who can be detained:
1. A person who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored those responsible for those attack
2. A person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces.

* "associated forces" (could mean anything they want it to)
* "hostilities" (could mean anything they want it to, e.g. even criticism? and note "or its coalition partners"
* "beligerent act" (could mean anything)
* "directly supported" (could mean anything)

 there is no clause that excludes americans from military detention without trial, otherwise it would have read "non-US citizen" instead of "a person". paragraph (e) pretends to appear like it exempts american citizens:

(e) AUTHORITIES.—Nothing in this section shall be construed 
to affect existing law or authorities relating to the detention of 
United States citizens, lawful resident aliens of the United States, 
or any other persons who are captured or arrested in the United 
all it says is that it doesnt affect existing law or authorities concerning the detention of american citizens or *anyone* (citizen or not) captured or arrested in the US.

section 1022 also pretends to appear to be an exemption of military detention for US citizens:
(1) UNITED STATES CITIZENS.—The requirement to detain 
a person in military custody under this section does not extend 
to citizens of the United State

but all it does is exempt US citizens from the *requirement* of military detention. it's not *required*, but it could still be *legal*.

update: i found this article about a US citizen, allegedly tied to al qaeda who was assassinated, along with his 16 year old son--without trial: