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Bill Hamblin

My Assessment Of The Situation At The Maxwell Institute

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Mike Reed is out of the thread.

Skylla

I stand corrected.

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I for one am glad. You are the only one representing the other side- ...

Not from what I see.

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I think we have enough members with money who will see the need as the world becomes more wild and wooley and incompatible with our values.

We always think that the time is just around the corner when the "world" will become incompatible with our values, and we will be breaking away into our own weird and insular world again like modern Amish. But it never happens. We like being respectable. That is why we gave up polygamy and gave blacks the priesthood. That's why we keep changing our doctrine and our history to remove the embarrassing parts. Do you think we are ultimately going to pass up the opportunity to become a respectable purveyor of academic-class religious scholarship?

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Several posts are hidden. There is no need for viciousness, mockery, or flaming, especially when directed toward a name. There are other boards who like that. We don't. The good news is that only posts have been removed not posters.

Has Mike Reed been banned?

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Hamblin and Peterson are best friends. Extremely biased.

Be that as it may, I trust them both more than anyone from the reconstituted Maxwell Institute.

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I cannot help but think this is extraordinarily bad news. Apostasy in high places, even.

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I cannot help but think this is extraordinarily bad news. Apostasy in high places, even.

Alma 62:44

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We always think that the time is just around the corner when the "world" will become incompatible with our values, and we will be breaking away into our own weird and insular world again like modern Amish. But it never happens. We like being respectable. That is why we gave up polygamy and gave blacks the priesthood. That's why we keep changing our doctrine and our history to remove the embarrassing parts. Do you think we are ultimately going to pass up the opportunity to become a respectable purveyor of academic-class religious scholarship?

You never give up on the reconsturctionist position; you are at least consistent. Unfortunately, it is a very poor understanding of facts, but thank you for sharing your opinion again, and again, and again.

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And this leaking as been going on for years to the detriment of Dan. And that says much. You are right about a house cleaning. Or at least find the mole who has been feeding exmormons information about Dan.

If it has been the same mole all along, some of his/her information has been quite wrong -- spectacularly so, in some instances. The possibility remains of more than one, I suppose.

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You would have a stronger point if he had not been fired by email and otherwise undermined while he was on the other side of the world.

This is often overlooked. In the heat of the moment, the email is the only outlet if that person is away from the workplace and also out of the country. However, I was once told that one should never respond in the heat of the moment but to wait until the emotional waters calim. But this is not easy to do when the emotional turbulence happens.

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If it has been the same mole all along, some of his/her information has been quite wrong -- spectacularly so, in some instances. The possibility remains of more than one, I suppose.

Whoever it is, their intent was to harm Dan. Moles do not need to get it always right because their intent is not to always give accurate information. Information can be given only to spread a rumor or do harm.

Someone seems to using the same informant on a different board. Although I have often wondered if this informant resembles Harvey in that Jimmie Stewart movie. Only in the imagination.

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This is often overlooked. In the heat of the moment, the email is the only outlet if that person is away from the workplace and also out of the country. However, I was once told that one should never respond in the heat of the moment but to wait until the emotional waters calim. But this is not easy to do when the emotional turbulence happens.

To treat the man so shabbily and then to force him to raise funds for the very organization by which he has just been so ill-used strikes me as beyond shameful.

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Whoever it is, their intent was to harm Dan. Moles do not need to get it always right because their intent is not to always give accurate information. Information can be given only to spread a rumor or do harm.

Someone seems to using the same informant on a different board. Although I have often wondered if this informant resembles Harvey in that Jimmie Stewart movie. Only in the imagination.

I had thought so too until all the events of this past week went down. The malefactor could not have made this up on his own. He had to get the emails from someone.

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Just wanted to say thank you to Bill Hamblin for this information...and, I am so sorry to hear this. I read what was posted on MD and was in a "wait and see" mode, because I found it so difficult to believe. Very sad and surprising, to see someone of Dr. Peterson's stature, let go. He has my prayers and good wishes. Have always enjoyed his articles and his research articles and videos on the Book of Mormon.

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Last week, Gerald Bradford ([email protected], 801-422-8619) Executive Director of the Maxwell Institute ([email protected], 801-422-9229), dismissed Dan Peterson ([email protected])--arguably the most prominent contemporary LDS apologist--as editor of the Mormon Studies Review, where he has served for twenty-three years.

Peterson wishes to continue the traditional heritage of FARMS, providing cutting edge scholarship and apologetics on LDS scripture. Bradford wants to move the Institute in a different direction, focusing on more secular-style studies that will be accessible and acceptable to non-Mormon scholars. Bradford is especially opposed to LDS apologetics, which he wants to terminate entirely as part of the mission of the Institute.

This event concludes a nearly decade-long struggle for the soul of FARMS and the Institute. ..... Astute observers will note that there has been a steady decline in both quantity and quality of Institute publications over the past few years.

I have had no desire or inclination to publicly comment on this situation.

I think you just did, Bill.

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Seth, I think what Bill meant is that <up to now> he has had no desire to comment publicly. That's how I read it, anyway.

When you're friend is being pilloried it becomes extremely difficult to remain silent.

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Some quick facts, in no particular order, addressing things mentioned above:

* I have some specific reasons to believe that those to whom I copied my response to Jerry Bradford were not the source of the leak.

* I have no reason to believe that any General Authority was involved in any way in the decision to terminate my editorship of the Review.

* Nobody at the Institute has been disciplined in any way for the leak.

* My travels were not financed by the Maxwell Institute. I was in Israel because a wealthy family hired me to take them there; they paid my expenses. I'm currently in Switzerland, entirely on my own dime. (And it's breathtakingly expensive.) I'm biding my time -- didn't want to undergo jet lag too many more times this summer -- until I'm scheduled to lecture on a cruise around the United Kingdom. The travel company will be paying for that. I'm trying to use my time here in the Alps (a place that I love, and where I served my mission) to get some work done. Unfortunately, I've been somewhat distracted of late.

* I knew that this would be a melancholy trip here, because the last two times I was in Switzerland and Austria, it was with my brother, to whom I introduced the place and who came to love it as I do. We were last here -- including the very same small chalet-hotel in Lauterbrunnen where I'm now typing -- in 2010, when we came over for the Passion Play in Oberammergau. My only sibling, my very close friend, and the last surviving member (besides me) of my nuclear family, he died suddenly at the end of March. I almost decided not to come here, thinking that the painful associations might be unbearable. They've been tough indeed, but this recent unpleasantness with the Institute has compounded the problem immeasurably.

* I don't intend to "go nuclear." I love the Church, the University, and the Institute.

* I'm not conscious of having done anything wrong.

* There are, as I see it, two main factors at play here: First is a genuine dislike for apologetics on the part of a relatively small group, including, to my very recent surprise, a minority faction within the Institute. Second is a serious misunderstanding, on the part of certain Institute and University administrators, of some of my actions, attitudes, and statements, which is very difficult to clear up from thousands of miles away.

* I'm still hoping for a resolution that will be satisfactory to all concerned. I'm an eternal optimist, though I admit that, in this case, things seem to be stacked against me.

* I really appreciate the expressions of support here. I've been receiving emails from many very kind people, and I know that some have written to or called the Maxwell Institute. I'm grateful for all of this. I hope that the messages to the Institute will have some impact.

With best wishes to everyone,

Dan Peterson

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When you're friend is being pilloried it becomes extremely difficult to remain silent.

A sentiment I completely understand.

I wish Dan the best.

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Dan,

Is this something the BYU Board of Directors might get involved in?

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I am grateful for the courage and strength of the leadership of MI, and the church leadership influencing this.

I have a strong conviction that this is a strategic move instigated from levels way above Gerald Bradford.

I doubt it.

Reading Hamblins thoughts gives a frigthening insight into the minds of the current danites

Ever unable to concieve of the tiniest error on their own behaf.

Danites? Really. Come on, get real. There's nothing in error from Hamblin's post as far as I or anyone else outside the immediate scoop can tell.

Always pointing fingers at enemies wronging them.

I think a mirror would serve the best aim for an enemy.

Then you seem to need one youself.

I would hope the allegiance of most of the apologists are to the church and not to themselves.

It is one thing to call others to repentance, but it is a harder thing to repent.

Who are you talking about? Bill Hamblin called someone to repentence? To whom was is?

I am reminded of the period after the manifestos.

Maby there is something to learn from the Nephites?

Yup. Don't leak confidential information and don't support apostates.

Edited by Darren10

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And that is our fault? What do you think MI will do about that? You have to admit they have botched it so far.

Yup. Here's what Hamblin said:

The Institute, for its part, has gone into full damage-control and stonewall mode, refusing to make a public announcement, or even to answer emails or phone calls on the subject from their bewildered subscribers and donors who have heard rumors of the affair, many of whom have for years donated money to the Institute specifically to facilitate Book of Mormon studies and apologetic efforts such as the Mormon Studies Review.

If they desire to clear anything up, correct any incorrect information it looks as though they have an open invite to do so.

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Be that as it may, I trust them both more than anyone from the reconstituted Maxwell Institute.

LOL. That's excellent!!!

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Dan,

Is this something the BYU Board of Directors might get involved in?

That's why I asked for confirmation if the Maxwell Institute is located on BYU Provo campus. If so (and I'm now 99% certain it is) I certainly hope that the BYU Board of Directors gets involved. I don't mind writing them either. Afterall, BYU calls me for donations. :angel:

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I doubt it.

I just read Dan Petersen's post and so I think we can all safely discard the assumption that LDS "higher up" officials were involved in this. My underastanding is that the LDS Church does give lots of leway for decision making. Even at BYU. Personally, I like that. I wanted to be very specific as to the conditions when I would oppose LDS funds helping an institution. I truly do not want the LDS Church dictating how these institutions are run. And they don't.

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A sentiment I completely understand.

I wish Dan the best.

Seth, just want to say that I have very recently become acquainted with your blog, and I am very impressed with your calm and reasoned approach. I have seen you described on another board as "one of the good guys," and as I look back over past interactions we've had here, I'm at long last coming to realize that.

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