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About Carborendum

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    Eternally grinding away at entropy

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  1. I'm not sure it is a false dichotomy. You're simply turning it into a question of semantics and characterization. Have you considered the necessary ties between "scientific consensus" and "groupthink"? Do you not see the similarities in denotation, but obvious connotative differences? To get to a deeper understanding of my meaning I'll give this disclaimer. Just because a person gives an quick answer to a single quick question doesn't mean they aren't generally speaking a trustworthy person. There is much in the context that can change that characterization. So, no I'm not saying that they really are untrustworthy people. But do I trust them on this one issue? How can I? I don't even know what question was asked in the survey. I was surprised to find out that I fit the category of a "climate scientist" in my profession -- at least from an article I once read on Huffpo. I never considered myself to be. But apparently my profession (Certified Floodplain Manager) was in the list. (ASIDE: as a CFM, I often have to deal with rainfall estimates and am part of committees that determine what data is sufficient to change the tables and charts used by others who calculate flood properties.) As such, I'll tell you that I often just read articles and papers to get the information. Other people are responsible for peer reviewing it. And by reading enough of these papers and articles on the same topic, I can get a sense of a consensus. I'll read it enough to see that it at least appears to have been done right. Nothing jumps out at me. Nothings seems amiss. So, it looks good. I accept it. This is not because I've thoroughly evaluated the data and methodology or studies or whatever all by myself. I'm just reading other people's work. Yes, scientific consensus really does mean groupthink to that degree. Only on a few topics that pique my interest do I really look at data or methodology. And when I do, I can say that I'm usually satisfied. But every once in a while I see something that doesn't make sense. I try to contact people who can get my objection out there. Sometimes it falls on deaf ears. Sometimes it results in a change. Then there is the matter of trusting the survey itself. You are trusting whoever presented the statistic or gathered the statistic. What was the question that was asked? What specifically did these climate scientists believe or reject? The thrust of my argument from the beginning was that there are certainly a few scientific truths that are the consensus. But those items of consensus are not what you're purporting them to be. A climate scientist is asked,"Do you believe global warming is real?" Well, duh-uh. That's just a matter of looking at temperature data for the past 1000 years. It has risen, overall. I don't think there is anyone who is going to say that we have not seen a pattern of warming over the past couple centuries. But there is a question of how much and what the cause is. A climate scientist is asked,"Do you believe greenhouse gases are a real phenomenon?" Again, absolutely. This is just plain physics that we can calculate from all known quantities. I would say "basic" physics. But it is far from basic. However, those who know the equations and variables can certainly show that greenhouse gases do exist and they do what people say they do. But again, how much? The whole thrust of my argument was not that climate alarmists have it all wrong. They don't. And neither do the people on my side of the aisle. I can't tell you how many people I've had to correct when they said that CO2 does nothing to the temperature. My argument was about what variables produce how much impact on our climate? And that is where the media that you're listening to have it all wrong.
  2. I guess people like making judgments without really reading what I said. I HAVE LISTENED TO MANY STORIES. But precious few are first hand accounts. I've lived a good many years, lived in six states. I also travel so much that I've spent at least a month or two in about 100 wards. I have personally known nearly 10,000 people in those wards on a personal level. And a tremendous number of them did indeed have people they loved leave the Church. And I still have many former LDS friends. But the numbers of people with first hand accounts of the members who remained "shunning" them away from the Church has been very close to zero. The vast majority still have their family visit them and celebrate holidays. And they do all they can to be civil. I have, on the other hand, heard MANY first hand accounts of people who leave who try to point out anti-Mormon literature to persuade the family to leave as well. I've heard many who have accused them of not loving them enough to leave the Church over gay marriage or whatever. I didn't just come up with all this on a musing on a lazy afternoon. Everything I said was from extensive personal experience. If that's not good enough for you, fine. You haven't lived my life. You haven't spoken to the people I've spoken with. And you'll believe what you'll believe. But you have no right to say I'm in denial, am ignorant, or lacking in experience based on nothing but the fact that I disagree with you.
  3. You seem to have multiple questions. But you didn't really ask any at all. First: "backwards timeline". I'm not sure why this wouldn't make sense. The laws of thermodynamics indicate that matter cannot be created nor destroyed, merely changed from one form to another. So, it obviously makes sense that what exists now has always existed in some form. That is a never-ending timeline in both directions. And this is science pointing this out. Why wouldn't it make sense? They even hypothesize that this universe has existed an infinite number of times before, exploding and imploding over and over again. It apparently makes sense in a secular frame, but not a religious one? Not following. If the problem is simply conceiving an "end", we have to recognize that "Eternity" is something that we cannot truly understand in mortality. All we can see in our minds is a line going off into the distance so far that we can't see it. Our finite minds seek a finite end to everything. So, to not see that end that doesn't exist, seems incongruous to us. Our Christian Friends: Well, nothing in the Bible says anything about how God was or was not created. He was simply there at the beginning. But the beginning of what? All we know is that he was there at the beginning of the creation of the universe. But if we do indeed believe there is a heaven and hell, are we stuck believing they exist only in this universe? So, could we theoretically travel there if we had the technology to travel that far in a short period of time? I find that harder to believe. Or else it would possible to rescue someone from hell by simply going there. I find it easier to believe there was something else before the Universe. And there is nothing in the Bible that forbids the belief that we were there too. In fact, there are multiple passages that indicate there was: Two that come to mind off the top of my head. Not slam dunk proof. But certainly indicators. What is God?: They may think that our beliefs "lower" God to our level. On the contrary. Our beliefs allow us to see the possibility of us being "raised" to His level. This may seem like "the glass is half full". But there is another factor here. When discussing aliens, there is no absolute scale of what level we are on. We're only on comparative scales. When speaking of God, HE IS the absolute scale.
  4. I've never had a problem with this personally. Not that no one I've loved ever left the Church. They have. But our relationships never suffered because of it. I've only heard a VERY small number of people who have dealt with it personally. I do, however, hear a plethora of "a friend said..." I wonder just how many of those horror stories actually overlap or are even real. I had a relative (an entire household) leave and join some no-name Christian church to raise their kids in. And we knew what had happened. For a while they tried to hide it. I just shook my head, figuring they'd bring it up when they were ready to talk about it. It seemed they were the ones who were shy about it. I didn't care as much as they thought I did. I saw the early warning signs. I did what I could to love them and all that. But I realized that, as disappointed as I was, it was their choice. They still come to our house a lot. We go to theirs. We ask each other for favors (like babysitting). We've been there for each other for many crises, including Hurricane Harvey. Whew! When the father of that household said thanks, I simply said, "No prob. That's what family is for." He said, "Yeah, I guess it is." He knew we loved them And I know he loves us. My oldest brother left the Church. It was because he was gay. This was LOOONNNGGG before the big political hoopla beginning in the late 90s. The thing is that we all knew he was gay several years before he ever came out to us. There was no big reveal. And it was no big deal for us. It was a big deal to him. I have no idea why. Notice that in both situations, we who stayed with the faith didn't have a problem. But both of the other parties felt shame. They felt fear. But I'll tell you that nothing we did would ever warrant anyone feeling that way. It was, instead, all the rumors and myths and rare stories of people who had been kicked out or disowned etc. How often does this really happen? Virtually all the people I know personally have said that they'd certainly be disappointed. But they would still love their family and friends. They would welcome them into their homes. I just don't buy into this attitude that it's an epidemic of hate. I tend to think we love people more. Evidence: How many times have we heard of people like Chieko Okazaki and Michael Mclean who have had a crisis of faith because of their love for their relatives? They'd consider leaving the Church themselves first before rejecting their loved ones. Those are the stories that I can verify when I hear it. But all these other stories? How many are verified? I often wonder if many of those who are disaffected simply imagine they were being rejected. Or possibly they misinterpreted pleas to come back as criticisms. Maybe the family was just REALLY BAD at communicating and it ended up coming out as criticism. Maybe the one who left was continually trying to convince the family to leave as well. Yeah, that's great for family unity. I'm sorry, I just don't see it as the problem this article makes it out to be.
  5. Whether it is in a person's church file or not is ... not AS important as people are making it out to be. They will have to be on the sex offenders' registry for their entire lives. And by virtue of that, they are not allowed BY LAW to do any activities involving minors. I would CERTAINLY be for the idea of leadership being responsible for checking the registry any time someone is called to such positions. They do that for boy scouts, why not youth, primary, and nursery? Nowadays, it isn't even a formal background check. Just look it up online.
  6. Brief enough that certainly isn't clear. "The inhabitants thereof" could simply refer to the fact that this world has ALL the inhabitants there are. Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying there aren't any. I'm saying that there is nothing specifically saying that there are. We can, of course, speculate -- and in this case, I see no harm in it. But it isn't a slam dunk. I'm about 5% over to the side of "we're the only inhabitants in the universe. Recently, the University of Oxford produced a model which says that we may very well be alone in the universe. https://www.nbcnews.com/mach/science/are-we-truly-alone-cosmos-new-study-casts-doubt-rise-ncna891286 https://cosmosmagazine.com/space/stop-looking-for-et-modelling-suggests-we-re-alone-in-the-universe Beyond that, we really aren't seeing it. After finding over 4000 planets in over 3000 systems, astronomers found that none of them could actually sustain life beyond a very very basic level. Of course that is a tiny tiny sample of the entire galaxy, let alone the universe. But the pattern they are seeing is that there is a very complicated set of variables that all need to coalesce in order to sustain life. We can do the numbers game and find that there would probably only be 10,000 to 50,000 planets with sentient life on it. That is not so astronomical as we have been led to believe. We have not realized how unusual earth is. Among all the planets we've discovered so far none of them even come close to having the delicate balance to even have the possibility of life now or in the future. The earth appears to be unique. I personally believe that the so called exoplanets don't really indicate the presence of the so-called algae they hope it is. It really doesn't make sense when considering all the variables on those planets. So, it may be that none of those observed planets actually sustains life. Even if there is life on other worlds, chances are that there aren't that many after all.
  7. This is a misleading statement. There are many things that support. But most will discount them because of assumptions about the BoM. Other areas seem to point at discounting the historicity, when in reality it is merely inconclusive. You cite DNA for example. The DNA tests merely point out what is dominant and what has survived. But a small nation among many in the Americas would have dilluted any Jewish DNA over thousands of years. There are many reasons to believe that even from the start, the Lehite DNA was dilluted within just a few generations. And there is further reason to believe that the Mulekite DNA was dilluted even more so. Mitochondrial DNA statistics have shown that very few (in comparison to the likely total) ancient mothers' DNA has survived. This doesn't mean non of the other mothers never existed. It just isn't found in the DNA anymore. Similar things could be said of Y-chromosomal DNA. So, that "evidence" that seems to prove the BoM historicity false is really an inconclusive test.
  8. If they've gotten to that point, 99% of the time you can't really do anything. There is one hope. You do the best you can to be the best example of light and love in her life. Not as missionary work, but as true, honest, charitable, and unselfish service.
  9. I keep hearing that. But consider the eventual extension of that logic. If ours was "way to convenient", which one would be "more convenient"? If it can't be, simply because the odds are too small, then that means it couldn't really happen anywhere. That's the same logic. Also keep in mind that nowhere does any scripture say that there is life on other planets. We're simply told that the Lord will not reveal anything to us about other worlds. It would work very similar to how the Nephites experienced it. Considering communication and travel technology of the time, they may as well have been on another planet at the time.
  10. I agree that it seems the punishment doesn't fit the crime. But we need to keep in mind two things: The maximum punishment per state law would have been 6 months or a year depending on the age of the boy. This is based on incomplete description in the KSL link. The additional time was for additional charges. They basically threw the book at him. They guy is going to be on the sex offenders' registry for the rest of his life. His life as he knew it is essentially over. That's no slap on the wrist.
  11. No misunderstanding. It's a matter of trust. Did all these scientists actually study all the information in the report and independently study and scrutinize it as if they were independently peer reviewing it? No. There has been no series of papers by said scientists that would support that. No series of second generation reports that would account for the large number of those surveyed that included an analysis of the data points or critique of the models. There was simply acceptance of the conclusions without any scrutiny by the population at large. They simply accepted it and repeated it. That is groupthink.
  12. I'm getting a distinct impression that many on this board are of the opinion that the BoM is not actually a factual book. It's merely a book of fables which teach good principles. Nothing more. Sorry. I'm not one of them. And, much of the BoM IS SUPPORTED by actual scientific evidence -- specifically some claims that have been used by such critics to discount the historicity of the BoM. Obviously, there is a lot we do not yet have proof of. But so what? We have some and we don't have all. That is true of much of archaeology.
  13. Think about what you just said. Let me re-word: "The keystone isn't the keystone because if you remove another stone that is not the keystone, then the arch will crumble as well." Yes, removal of other stones may cause the arch to crumble. But that doesn't mean the keystone is not a keystone.
  14. We're just going to have to agree to disagree here. You seem convinced that all this is significant. I look at this entire quote and think,"Why is that considered a good argument for this?" I'll grant that you've addressed the idea that this was something done in the temple. But you're not addressing the GULF between simply making a sacrifice (which would be considered parallel to simply praying for someone else) vs. performing a vicarous ordinance in place of another. Clarify: Are you stating that it is you personal experience that you have personally witnessed that endowed persons would gather together outside the temple, clothed in the full temple ceremonial clothing and performed a True Order of Prayer ceremony? As stated elsewhere, there were some things that were done with special permission. In fact the special permission was quite common. But that would seem to indicate that those who did it without special permission were doing something which was forbidden. And I was an adult when the Church was cracking down on the practice back in the 80s when people took it upon themselves to have such groups. It was these groups that I was referring to. While some did it out of ignorance, others continued even when the Brethren said to stop it. They were considered apostate.
  15. You're now getting into the individual pieces of the arch. Think about this: When anti-Mormons attack us, what is the #1 thing they attack? The validity of the BoM. Think about why they do that.
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