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2011-05-20 Conspiracy, Religions

THE WORLD IS COMING TO AN END!

It’s happening tomorrow.. (Maybe in a few hours!!)

OMGOSH WHAT WILL I DO!!!!

Here is a thought…

I will content myself by REMEMBERING that “The World is coming to an end” has happened many times in the past…

Funnily enough.. Most of the time.. It’s just ANOTHER RELIGIOUS SCAM..

See: ReligiousTolerance.Org

Failed prophecies:

  • 30: The Christian Scriptures (New Testament), when interpreted literally, appear to record many predictions by Yeshua of Nazareth (Jesus Christ) that God’s Kingdom would arrive within a very short period, or was actually in the process of arriving. For example, Jesus is recorded as saying in Matthew 16:28: “…there shall be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.” In Matthew 24:34, Yeshua is recorded as saying: “…This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.” Since the life expectancy in those days was little over 30 years, Jesus appears to have predicted his second coming sometime during the 1st century CE. It didn’t happen.
  • 60: Interpreting the Epistles of Paul of Tarsus literally, his writings seem to imply that Jesus would return and usher in a rapture during the lifetime of persons who were living in the middle of the 1st century.
  • 90: Saint Clement 1 predicted that the world end would occur at any moment.
  • 2nd Century CE: Prophets and Prophetesses of the Montanist movement predicted that Jesus would return sometime during their lifetime and establish the New Jerusalem in the city of Pepuza in Asia Minor.
  • 365: A man by the name of Hilary of Poitiers, announced that the end would happen that year. It didn’t.
  • 375 to 400: Saint Martin of Tours, a student of Hilary, was convinced that the end would happen sometime before 400 CE.
  • 500: This was the first year-with-a-nice-round-number-panic. The antipope Hippolytus and an earlier Christian academic Sextus Julius Africanus had predicted Armageddon at about this year.
  • 968: An eclipse was interpreted as a prelude to the end of the world by the army of the German emperor Otto III.
  • 992: Good Friday coincided with the Feast of the Annunciation; this had long been believed to be the event that would bring forth the Antichrist, and thus the end-times events foretold in the book of Revelation. Records from Germany report that a new sun rose in the north and that as many as 3 suns and 3 moons were fighting. There does not appear to be independent verification of this remarkable event.
  • 1000-JAN-1: Many Christians in Europe had predicted the end of the world on this date. As the date approached, Christian armies waged war against some of the Pagan countries in Northern Europe. The motivation was to convert them all to Christianity, by force if necessary, before Christ returned in the year 1000. Meanwhile, some Christians had given their possessions to the Church in anticipation of the end. Fortunately, the level of education was so low that many citizens were unaware of the year. They did not know enough to be afraid. Otherwise, the panic might have been far worse than it was. Unfortunately, when Jesus did not appear, the church did not return the gifts. Serious criticism of the Church followed. The Church reacted by exterminating some heretics. Agitation settled down quickly, as it later did in the year 2000.
  • 1000-MAY: The body of Charlemagne was disinterred on Pentecost. A legend had arisen that an emperor would rise from his sleep to fight the Antichrist.
  • 1005-1006: A terrible famine throughout Europe was seen as a sign of the nearness of the end.
  • 1033: Some believed this to be the 1000th anniversary of the death and resurrection of Jesus. His second coming was anticipated. Jesus’ actual date of execution is unknown, but is believed to be in the range of 27 to 33 CE.
  • 1147: Gerard of Poehlde decided that the millennium had actually started in 306 CE during Constantine’s reign. Thus, the world end was expected in 1306 CE.
  • 1179: John of Toledo predicted the end of the world during 1186. This estimate was based on the alignment of many planets.
  • 1205: Joachim of Fiore predicted in 1190 that the Antichrist was already in the world, and that King Richard of England would defeat him. The Millennium would then begin, sometime before 1205.
  • 1284: Pope Innocent III computed this date by adding 666 years onto the date the Islam was founded.
  • 1346 and later: The black plague spread across Europe, killing one third of the population. This was seen as the prelude to an immediate end of the world. Unfortunately, the Christians had previously killed a many of the cats, fearing that they might be familiars of Witches. The fewer the cats, the more the rats. It was the rat fleas that spread the black plague.
  • 1496: This was approximately 1500 years after the birth of Jesus. Some mystics in the 15th century predicted that the millennium would begin during this year.
  • 1524: Many astrologers predicted the imminent end of the world due to a world wide flood. They obviously had not read the Genesis story of the rainbow.
  • 1533: Melchior Hoffman predicted that Jesus’ return would happen a millennium and a half after the nominal date of his execution, in 1533. The New Jerusalem was expected to be established in Strasbourg, Germany. He was arrested and died in a Strasbourg jail.
  • 1669: The Old Believers in Russia believed that the end of the world would occur in this year. 20 thousand burned themselves to death between 1669 and 1690 to protect themselves from the Antichrist.
  • 1689: Benjamin Keach, a 17th century Baptist, predicted the end of the world for this year.
  • 1736: British theologian and mathematician William Whitson predicted a great flood similar to Noah’s for OCT-13 of this year.
  • 1792: This was the date of the end of the world calculated by some believers in the Shaker movement.
  • 1794: Charles Wesley, one of the founders of Methodism, thought Doomsday would be in this year.
  • 1830: Margaret McDonald, a Christian prophetess, predicted that Robert Owen would be the Antichrist. Owen helped found New Harmony, IN.
  • 1832?: Joseph Smith (1805-1844) was the founder of the Church of Christ, which became the Restorationist movement after many schisms. It now includes The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – a.k.a. the Mormons, and about a hundred other denominations and sects. He heard a voice while praying. He wrote, in Doctrines and Covenants section 130:
    • 14: “I was once praying very earnestly to know the time of the coming of the Son of Man, when I heard a voice repeat the following:”
    • 15: “Joseph, my son, if thou livest until thou art eighty-five years old, thou shalt see the face of the Son of Man; therefore let this suffice, and trouble me no more on this matter.”
    • 16: “I was left thus, without being able to decide whether this coming referred to the beginning of the millennium or to some previous appearing, or whether I should die and thus see his face.”
    • 17: “I believe the coming of the Son of Man will not be any sooner than that time.”

The year in which this event occurred is not recorded. However, one commentator suggested 1832 or earlier. 16 Smith is later recorded as having said:

“I prophesy in the name of the Lord God, and let it be written--the Son of Man will not come in the clouds of heaven till I am eighty-five years old.” 17

Smith would have reached the age of 85 during 1890. Unfortunately, by that year, Smith had been dead for almost a half century, having been assassinated by a mob. Note that his prophecy is ambiguous. It can be interpreted that:

Jesus would return during 1890 (which did not materialize) or that 1890 would pass without Jesus’ return (which did come to pass).

Some anti-Mormon sources quote only verses 14 and 15, and draw the former conclusion – that Smith’s prophecy failed.

  • 1843-MAR-21: William Miller, founder of the Millerite movement, predicted that Jesus would come on this date. A very large number of Christians accepted his prophecy.
  • 1844-OCT-22: When Jesus did not return, Miller predicted this new date. In an event which is now called “The Great Disappointment,” many Christians sold their property and possessions, quit their jobs and prepared themselves for the second coming. Nothing happened; the day came and went without incident.
  • 1850: Ellen White, founder of the Seven Day Adventists movement, made many predictions of the timing of the end of the world. All failed. On 1850-JUN-27 she prophesied that only a few months remained before the end. She wrote: “My accompanying angel said, ‘Time is almost finished. Get ready, get ready, get ready.’ …now time is almost finished…and what we have been years learning, they will have to learn in a few months.” 10
  • 1856 or later: At Ellen White’s last prediction, she said that she was shown in a vision the fate of believers who attended the 1856 SDA conference. She wrote “I was shown the company present at the Conference. Said the angel: ‘Some food for worms, some subjects of the seven last plagues, some will be alive and remain upon the earth to be translated at the coming of Jesus.” 11 That is, some of the attendees would die of normal diseases; some would die from plagues at the last days, others would still be alive when Jesus came. “By the early 1900s all those who attended the conference had passed away, leaving the Church with the dilemma of trying to figure out how to explain away such a prominent prophetic failure.” 12
  • 1881: Mother Shipton, (1488 - 1561), a 16th century mystic predicted the end of the world: “…The world to an end shall come; in eighteen hundred and eighty-one.”
  • 1891 or before: On 1835-FEB-14, Joseph Smith, the founder of the Mormon church, attended a meeting of church leaders. He said that the meeting had been called because God had commanded it. He announced that Jesus would return within 56 years – i.e. before 1891-FEB-15. (History of the Church 2:182)
  • 1914 was one of the more important estimates of the start of the war of Armageddon by the Jehovah’s Witnesses (Watchtower Bible and Tract Society). They based their prophecy of 1914 from prophecy in the book of Daniel, Chapter 4. The writings referred to “seven times”. The WTS interpreted each “time” as equal to 360 days, giving a total of 2520 days. This was further interpreted as representing 2520 years, measured from the starting date of 607 BCE. This gave 1914 as the target date. When 1914 passed, they changed their prediction; 1914 became the year that Jesus invisibly began his rule.

1914, 1915, 1918, 1920, 1925, 1941, 1975 and 1994, etc. were other dates that the Watchtower Society (WTS) or its members predicted. Since late in the 19th century, they had taught that the “battle of the Great Day of God Almighty” (Armageddon) would happen in 1914 CE. It didn’t.

The next major estimate was 1925. Watchtower magazine predicted: “The year 1925 is a date definitely and clearly marked in the Scriptures, even more clearly than that of 1914; but it would be presumptuous on the part of any faithful follower of the Lord to assume just what the Lord is going to do during that year.” 6

The Watchtower Society selected 1975 as its next main prediction. This was based on the estimate “according to reliable Bible chronology Adam was created in the year 4026 BCE, likely in the autumn of the year, at the end of the sixth day of creation.” 8 They believed that the year 1975 a promising date for the end of the world, as it was the 6,000th anniversary of Adam’s creation. Exactly 1,000 years was to pass for each day of the creation week. This prophecy also failed.

The current estimate is that the end of the world as we know it will happen precisely 6000 years after the creation of Eve. 9 There is no way of knowing when this happened.

More details on the WTS predictions.

  • 1919: Meteorologist Albert Porta predicted that the conjunction of 6 planets would generate a magnetic current that would cause the sun to explode and engulf the earth on DEC-17.

References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay.

The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

Richard Kyle, “The last days are here again: A history of the end times,” Baker Books, (1998), Page 111.

Watchtower magazine, 1924-JUL-15, Page 211).

William Martin, “Waiting for the End: The growing interest in apocalyptic prophesy,” The Atlantic Monthly, 1982-JUN. Online at: http://www.theatlantic.com/

“Herman L. Hoeh,” Wikipedia, downloaded on 2006-APR-24, from: http://en.wikipedia.org/

Mike Harris Jr., “Arnold Murray. False Teacher. False Prophet.,” Mikes Christian Corner, at: http://www.mikeschristiancorner.com/

Toooo funny… → http://www.rapturesurvivor.com/

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2010-09-26 Religion

I have considered myself an Agnostic for sometime now. I wont bore you with the reasons for my choice. But I will say that I’m glad to be living in a country that allows me to proclaim my choice publicly without fear of religious repercussions.

Problem: Will belief in a god or religion limit our scientific future?

The Australian political system is openly dominated by religion. Being Agnostic, I have been feeling somewhat out of step with the mostly christian dominated politics here in Australia.

As a result, being rurally located, I have turned to the internet for some answers. But from what I have seen and heard online. Mostly the believers constantly barrage the Atheist/Agnostic with passionate pleas for their lost souls. Little else is offered. Threats of hellfire and damnation. The believers are quite primitive sometimes.

But no real arguement for religion is offered. It is suggested that religion provides morals to societies. Is is suggested that without structured religions societies would be without even basic morals. But I discount that on reasons of common sense. I reason that Morals also developed on tribal/national borders.

I prefer to communicate with people on PalTalk. PalTalk has been around since 1999 and provides Voice/Text chat in selectable rooms. (like irc) Use of PalTalk is Free.

One Atheist room I have found recently is called “Why are religious people intellectually dishonest?

There is a rarely a dull moment in the room. With believers of most faiths participating regularly.


Zoom in on Image

If you would like to join into the chat.. (Mostly running 24/7) Just click the following link and you will be placed into the room.

http://chat.paltalk.com/g2/paltalk/1148934424

There are 2 ways of running PalTalk nowadays. If you have the full version of the client installed. Clicking the room link will open the client and connect you to the room. However, If you dont have the full version of PalTalk installed. A cut down browser based java client (which isnt as good) will be started.

I would recomend that everyone installs the full Paltalk client rather than using the java version. But if your on linux or Mac maybe the java version is better for you.

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2010-07-20 Religion

Note: Unfinished.. Saved as a placeholder

I was wondering if “Marriage” is on the increase or decrease in Australia.

So with limited capabilities I devised a test of sorts.

Armed with:

I decided to create a graph that shows the percentage of population that is participating in marriage each year. (population / marriages)/100

To be honest. I thought that graph would indicate an overall decrease.

But I was wrong. The graph seems to indicate that Marriages are at an all time high. Approximately 1.9% of the population each year is now getting married.


Zoom in on Image

Can other things can be observed in the data? Peaks and troughs at specific turning points in our history?

  • 1920 Trough
    • April 20 to September 12
      • Australia competes at the 1920 Summer Olympics in Antwerp, winning one bronze and two silver medals. It is the first time Australia has competed at the Olympics separately from New Zealand – the two nations had previously competed as a combined Australasia team.
    • April 2
      • Edward, Prince of Wales arrives in the country to thank Australians for the part they played in World War I.
    • August 10
      • The Princes Highway is officially opened.
    • December 3
      • The first successful flight from Melbourne to Perth is completed.
  • 1931 Peak
    • January 10
      • The Beef Riot takes place in Adelaide. Seventeen people are injured when unemployed men clash with police while protesting the decision to remove beef from the dole ration.
    • January 22
      • The Commonwealth Court of Conciliation and Arbitration announces a 10% reduction in the basic wage, in addition to reductions made in accordance with the fall in the cost of living index, effective from February 1.
    • March 4
      • Holden’s Motor Body Builders is purchased by General Motors, and is renamed General Motors–Holden’s Ltd.
    • August 15
      • The two ends of the Sydney Harbour Bridge are joined in the middle.
    • December 19
      • A federal election is held. The incumbent Australian Labor Party led by James Scullin is defeated by former Labor MP Joseph Lyons and the United Australia Party.
  • 1942 Trough
    • February 15
      • Singapore falls to the Japanese, with approximately 15,000 Australian troops taken prisoner.
    • February 19
      • Darwin is bombed by Japanese forces for the first time. At least 243 persons are killed.
    • March 1
      • The cruiser HMAS Perth is torpedoed by Japanese destroyers in the Battle of Sunda Strait, sinking with the loss of 350 crew and three civilians.
    • March 3
      • 88 Allied civilians and military personnel were killed and 22 aircraft were lost when Japanese Zero fighters strafed Broome.
    • March 20
      • At Terowie, South Australia, American General Douglas MacArthur makes his famous speech which included the words “I came out of Bataan and I shall return.”
    • May 4
      • The Battle of the Coral Sea begins.
    • May 19
      • The prototype CAC Boomerang, an Australian designed and built fighter aircraft, takes to the air for the first time.
    • May 22
      • American soldier Eddie Leonski is arrested and charged for the “Brownout Murders” of three women.
    • May 31
      • During an attack on Sydney Harbour, a Japanese midget submarine sinks the converted Sydney ferry, HMAS Kuttabul, killing 21.
    • June 7
      • The Income Tax (War-time Arrangements) Act 1942 is enacted, transferring the power to levy personal income tax from the states to the federal government.
    • June 8
      • Japanese midget submarines shell Sydney and Newcastle.
    • July 6
      • Elements of the Australian 9th Division arrive in El Alamein. The Division subsequently takes part in the First and Second Battle of El Alamein.
    • October 30
      • Construction begins on the Burma Railway, begun by 15,000 Australian prisoners-of-war captured by the Japanese after the fall of Singapore.
    • November 26
      • A violent brawl breaks out in Brisbane between United States military personnel and Australian servicemen and civilians, in what becomes known as the “Battle of Brisbane”. One Australian soldier is shot dead.
    • December 1
      • HMAS Armidale, a corvette of the Royal Australian Navy, is sunk with the loss of 100 men.
  • 1960 Peak
    • 19 July
      • First reported skyjacking/hijacking in the world Trans Australia Airlines Flight 408.
    • 14 October
      • The Warragamba Dam is opened by the Premier of New South Wales. Jack Brabham wins the Formula One Championship for the second time.
  • 1970 Trough
    • April 21
      • The Hutt River Province Principality is established.
    • May 3
      • A new international terminal is opened at Sydney Airport
    • July 1
      • Melbourne Airport is officially opened.
    • October 15
      • A portion of the West Gate Bridge in Melbourne collapses, killing 35.
    • Pope Paul VI visits Australia. Queen Elizabeth and other members of the royal family tour Australia.
  • 1978/79 Peak
    • Neville Bonner is announced as Australian of the Year.
    • June 9
      • A fire at Luna Park Sydney kills 7. The park is forced to close.
    • July 11
      • The American space station Skylab crashes in Western Australia.
    • July 19
      • The Miss Universe final is celebrated in Perth.
    • July 20
      • Inaugural meeting of the National Farmers’ Federation.
    • October 19
      • The Australian Federal Police is established.
  • 1984 Trough
    • February 1
      • Medicare comes into effect in Australia.
    • February 2
      • Melbourne newspaper The Age publishes phone taps incriminating an unknown judge.
    • February 6
      • A bomb blast wrecks the home of Judge Richard Gee in the Sydney suburb of Belrose. High Court Judge, Justice Lionel Murphy is named in Parliament as the judge referred to in The Age tapes published on February 2.
    • March 24
      • Wran Government re-elected in NSW for a 4th term.
    • April 19
      • Advance Australia Fair is proclaimed as Australia’s national anthem, and green and gold as the national colours.
    • May 14
      • The one dollar coin is introduced in Australia.
    • July 18
      • National Crime Authority established.
    • August 1
      • Australian banks are deregulated.
    • August 21
      • The Federal budget is televised for the first time.
    • September 2
      • 7 people shot dead and 12 wounded in bikie shootout between rival bikie gangs the Bandidos and Comancheros in the Sydney suburb of Milperra.
    • September 5
      • Western Australia becomes the last Australian state to abolish capital punishment for ordinary crimes (ie murder). New South Wales maintained it as a punishment for treason and piracy with violence until 1985†, when capital punishment was finally abolished in Australia.
    • November 26
      • Former NSW Corrective Services Minister Rex Jackson appears in Court on conspiracy charges for the early release of Prisoners.
    • December 2
      • Hawke Government re-elected with a reduced majority.
  • 1997 Peak
    • 1 May
      • Tasmania becomes the last state in Australia to decriminalise homosexuality.
    • 1 May
      • Melbourne’s HM Prison Pentridge is closed.
    • 5 May
      • The position of Chief Minister of Norfolk Island is restored.
    • 20 May
      • A Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission report calls for an apology for an early government policy of removing Aboriginal children from their parents and placing them in institutions.
    • 1 July
      • The telecommunications market is deregulated, allowing the entry of competitors other than Telstra and Optus.
    • 13 July
      • A crowd of over 100,000 people watches the Royal Canberra Hospital implosion. A 12-year-old girl, Katie Bender, is killed instantly and nine others are injured when debris from the site travels across Lake Burley Griffin.
    • 30 July
      • The Thredbo landslide occurs, killing 17 people.
    • 2 August
      • Stuart Diver, a ski instructor, is rescued as the sole survivor of the Thredbo landslide.
    • 30 August
      • Elections in the Northern Territory re-elect the Country Liberal Party government of Shane Stone.
    • 31 August
      • The head of Yagan, a Noongar warrior, is repatriated to Australia 164 years after being taken to the United Kingdom.
    • 11 October
      • A state election is held in South Australia. The Liberal/National coalition government of John Olsen is re-elected for another term, albeit with a substantially reduced minority.
    • 15 October
      • Cheryl Kernot, leader of the Australian Democrats, defects to the Australian Labor Party.
  • 1999 Trough
    • 14 April
      • A massive hailstorm hits Sydney, with most of the damage being centred on the Eastern Suburbs. It is the costliest natural disaster in Australian history, causing $1.7 billion in insured damages.
    • 11 May
      • The biotechnology industry receives a record $800 million in the federal budget.
    • 21 May
      • Eight decaying bodies are found in barrels in a disused bank vault north of Adelaide, marking the beginning of the Snowtown murders case, which were Australia’s worst ever serial killings. More bodies were found underneath a house in Adelaide on 26 May.
    • 28 June
      • The GST bill is passed through the Senate, with the help of most of the Australian Democrats, in exchange for exemptions on fresh food.
    • 30 June
      • Tim Fischer retires as federal leader of the National Party & is replaced by John Anderson the next day.
    • 27 July
      • A canyoning disaster at Saxetenbach Gorge near Interlaken in Switzerland. 21 tourists, 14 of them Australian, are killed.
    • 26 August
      • The Prime Minister creates a controversy when he avoids the use of the word ‘sorry’ when a motion was tabled in Parliament expressing ‘deep & sincere regret that indigenous Australians suffered injustices under the practises of past generations’.
    • 30 August
      • East Timor votes for independence from Indonesia. In the violence that follows, Australia is a major contributor of peacekeeping forces.
    • 18 September
      • In a shock result, Steve Bracks & the Labor Party form a minority government with three rural independents to oust the ruling Liberal/National coalition government of Jeff Kennett in Victoria.
    • 3 November
      • The Reserve Bank announce an interest rate increase of 0.25%, the first since 1994.
    • 6 November
      • A referendum is held to determine whether Australia should become a republic & whether a preamble is inserted into the constitution recognising the Aborigines as Australia’s first people. The ‘no’ vote scores 54% on the republic question & 60% on the preamble question.
    • 14 November
      • In response to the growing number of illegal immigrants, most of whom arrived by boat, the government allows police to board vessels in international waters. On 23 November, refugees were barred from seeking asylum in they had lived somewhere else for more than seven days or had the right to live somewhere else.
  • 2005 Peak
    • 11 January
      • 9 people are killed in Bushfires in South Australia, making them the worst fires seen in Australia since Ash Wednesday until the February 7 Victorian bushfires in February 2009.
    • 25 February
      • Parts of the Sydney suburb of Macquarie Fields erupt into rioting following the death of a 19 year old in a police car chase.
    • 26 February
      • The ALP government of Geoff Gallop is re-elected in Western Australia for a second term.
    • 2 April
      • The Shark 02 Royal Australian Navy Westland Sea King helicopter crashes off the coast of Nias, killing nine people.
    • 17 April
      • Bali Nine are arrested for drug smuggling in Indonesia.
    • 2 May
      • Douglas Wood taken hostage in Iraq. He was rescued on 15 June.
    • 6 May
      • The scandal concerning the 2001 deportation of Vivian Solon first came to light.
    • 26 May
      • National Sorry Day renamed National Day of Healing.
    • 27 May
      • Schapelle Corby convicted of drug smuggling by an Indonesian court & sentenced to 20 years in gaol, later reduced to 15 & then reverted to 20 years.
    • 1 June
      • 2005 Indonesian embassy bioterrorism hoax.
    • 27 July
      • After 10 years in power Bob Carr resigns as Premier of New South Wales & is replaced by Morris Iemma on 3 August.
    • 21 August
      • Michelle Leslie is arrested in Bali after being found with two ecstasy pills in her handbag at an open-air dance party just outside of Kuta. She is found guilty & sentenced to three months in prison on 18 November, but is released on 20 November as she had already served her sentence.
    • 29 August
      • After describing Bob Carr’s wife Helena as a “mail-order bride”, NSW Opposition Leader John Brogden resigns. He attempts suicide on 30 August.
    • 12 October
      • The Bali Memorial, Melbourne commemorating the victims of the 2002 Bali bombings is officially opened.
    • 2 December
      • Van Tuong Nguyen is hanged in Singapore for drug offences. He is the first Australian to be executed since 1993.
    • 11 December & 12 December
      • 2005 Cronulla riots take place, with the rioting centred around Cronulla & other beachside suburbs. There is also rioting in the Greater Western Suburbs area of Sydney & attacks on people of Middle Eastern descent are reported in Perth & Adelaide.
    • 31 December
      • Sections of the Trans-Australian Railway near Nurina on the Nullarbor Plain were washed away by flooding, halting passenger and freight services for up to five days.

Thanks to Wikipedia for the data.

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2007-03-02 Religion

Understanding Islam

Before 9/11 I knew very little about Islam. After 9/11 I made it a point to find out what makes a Muslim. I read a fair bit of information on the web. While I was acting as a staff member for an unnamed chat program, I sometimes used my spare time to voice chat to Muslim people about how Islam works.

Keeping it under 'Control'

I have one or two (possibly more) Muslim friends as a result of that chat program. But no matter how open these people were to discussing Islam with me, (and I sometimes asked questions that I knew would be hard for them to answer.) Not one of them was able to give me proper logical answers to most of my questions about Islam. It all comes back to doctrine for the Muslims. Only the Clerics are able to ‘interpret’ the readings. To even question Islam is taboo for normal Muslims.

Even the moderate (almost non practising) Muslims still became extremely defensive when trying to justify the laws of their religion. Now some of the people I spoke to were professional people who worked with modern computer equipment etc.. They fully partaking in the modern worlds inventions in all other respects except for religion being the divider between us. One admitted to having the very occasional drink of alcohol. But even he defended Islam with such fervour. That when he found himself not able to sufficiently justify his religion. He agitatedly suggested I read certain websites that may explain it better to me. I received a similar response from most Muslims I spoke to.

Women are just not treated as equals under Islam.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_in_Islam

This has serious implications for westerners who have such ideals as “all people being created equal” (Race/Creed/Colour/Sex?) The obvious question is that if your own Women are not equal, then what status is a Man from another country? Doesn’t this system seem to invite Human Rights violations by it’s very nature?

They place their religion first. Their country second?

The way I see it. The Muslim way of looking at the world is always firstly, “as a Muslim”.

I do not know to what extent this religious fervour will go in a moderate Muslim. For example: Would a moderate Muslim (what is a moderate??) honour the laws of their ‘adopted’ country above their religion? I don’t think so.. That worries me because there are a lot of Muslims in our Australian society. If the extremist part of the religion is able to gain sufficient sympathy from the moderates in this religion. Then Howard may have bitten off a lot more than he can possibly chew. (Good time to bow out.. Let the next guy have the problem..)

How big is the problem?

Unfortunately, I can’t help thinking that, the law of averages says their will be a percentage of Muslims with extremist ideals as part of that overall Australian Muslim population. I just wonder what extent those groups would or could go to in this country.

Foolish Political meddling

The stupid thing is.. I don’t think we had to worry about Muslim extremists in this country prior to John Howard participating in the “War of the Willing”

But now.. I fear we do.. We have closely aligned ourselves politically with the US and Britain in our response to a “War on Terror”. The question remains.. Why did Howard do it? Was it all just to stay in power? Howard knew that the war was very unpopular with voters. Maybe “Honest John” realises that with Global Warming and a US government in huge debt. Being Australian Prime Minister may not be such a good job soon. If you can believe the incoming governments. They always inherit huge depts from their outgoing counterparts. (We shall see..)

What's all this religious frenzy about anyway?

As far as all this religion stuff goes. I personally don’t have much of a religious fervour. I was raised in a Christian society and given Christian ideals, So I guess I have a Christian bias.. (But I’m working on it..) I tend to believe that if God exists. It’s beyond what I could understand. So therefore I will try and live in a civilised manner. Distributing fate where I see fit. Participating my dribble at the appropriate moments. (But not too much - like those top posters.. <GRIN> I don’t want to leave a treasure trail of data/ranting/swearing behind me.)

As for as the Iraq and Afghanistan people being able to choose to return to their preferred religious based form of government.

In my opinion, that is a foregone conclusion.

I can see the Muslim Clerics trying to impose a more restrictive religious form of government. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharia) Which in my opinion will happen.. Over time..

Good old Uncle Sam?

So.. I think I see a pattern..Don’t you see the pattern? The US doesn’t like the way a leader or a government of a country is acting. So the US destabilises the country. The US changes the leadership or government of the country. The new leader or government of that country is pro US for a time. (The US make sure of that..) Then eventually (over time) the circle repeats.

I think we may have seen enough data at this point in history to conclude that the US will meddle in ANY other country on the whim of whatever president happens to be power.

http://www.swnewsherald.com/online_c...r_meddling.php

If I were an American citizen I would be demanding amendments to their constitution (or whatever it takes) to limit the power of the president after seeing how it can/has been abused.

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2007-02-29 Religion

“PJ O’Donovan” <Xentinc@aol.com wrote in message news:1175253846.120754.149370@n59g2000hsh.googlegroups.com

Americaphobia: Final Thoughts

Published March29, 2007

“It’s very hard for me to look at American Muslims, or Muslims in general, or anyone who considers themselves “liberal” or “progressive” or “humanist,” who claim to stand for freedom and human rights and then attack everything America has done and tried to do in Iraq over the last four years.

The fact is that the naysayers claimed we weren’t really striving for liberation. We were. They claimed we’d install a new puppet dictator. We did not. They claimed that we wouldn’t really try to set up a democracy. We did. They claimed there would be no legitimate elections. The Iraqis had three national elections in a row, all certified as legitimate by international observers, not even counting the local elections that were held before that.

They claimed we’d do everything possible to get out of the country “before the next elections”--they claimed that before the 2004 elections and again before the 2006 elections. It didn’t happen. Now these same people in many cases are cheering for a Congress that’s trying to force us out of Iraq even though the war supporters consistently say “no, that would be morally and strategically wrong.”

Time after time the naysayers have proven themselves both morally and intellectually incoherent, and yet they never have the introspection to acknowledge this.

Furthermore, anyone calling himself a “liberal” or a “humanist”-- Muslim or not--is in my view faced with a stark choice:

You either sit around pretending that a vicious, murderous, fascist “insurgency” that routinely cuts people’s heads off and shoots children in the face is the “legitimate voice of the Iraqi people,” or you recognize that there is in Iraq a government elected by the Iraqi people working under a Constitution written entirely by Iraqis that recognizes human rights better than any in the Arab world.

No matter how many reservations you have about how it was done or how imperfectly that elected government implements the ideals expressed in that ratified Constitution.

If you take the former position you have no business calling yourself a liberal or a progressive or a humanist. If you take the latter position, then maybe you have to swallow the bitter pill that someone named George Bush, whom you don’t like and maybe think is incompetent, was the instigator of something that damn well needs to be supported.

But you can’t have it both ways. Indeed, by declaring the whole thing illegitimate, all you’re doing is siding with the Islamophobes of the world who claim the Muslims and the Arabs are far too savage, backward, and primitive to respect things like democracy and human rights. Indeed, you’re implicitly siding the the Jihadwatch crowd.

It’s high time someone told you people this, whether you’re Muslims or not.

The progressive, humanist position is not, and never has been, the “anti-war” position. “

Lazerzap Replies

You dont get it do you…. The people in Iraq and Afganistan wanted to live in an Islamic state. They didnot/do not want democracy. They want (rightly or wrongly) their religious based government. I think when the USA (and the willing…) finally leave Iraq and Afganistan.. (If ever) The people will return to their Islamic based government.

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