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» The Ornery American Forum » General Comments » Ornery Etiquette, Censure, & Suspension (Page 1)

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Author Topic: Ornery Etiquette, Censure, & Suspension
KnightEnder
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I think we should have a mandatory time-out period for people that misrepresent the statements of other members in order to libel those members if it can be proven to the Mod's satisfaction that what they accused the offended member of saying wasn't what they said, and that the member libeling them did so intentionally.

I'm using Ed and Koner in my examples because they are the two that have done it to me in the last two days, but it happens all the time.

Koner's was an honest mistake, and while I think we as a group should strive to be damn sure we have the right person when we are accusing them of something disgraceful, I don't think that kind of thing should call for censure or suspension. Also, it should be noted that Koner has been man enough to apologize and admit his mistake.

Also, to be fair Ed has not had a chance to apologize, as I have only just now pointed out how he has unfairly libeled me, but I think it is obvious to anyone reading the exchange that he purposely misrepresents what I said in order to make me look bad. In this case to make me look like a Nazi-lover. If you can believe that. (In fact it is amazing coincidence that these "misunderstandings" always seem to make me out to be a Nazi-lover or something equally disgusting.)

Personally, I'm sick of spending half of my time here pointing out that I didn't say what I was accused of. Or pointing out that if you can read English it is apparent that I didn't mean what my opponent claims I meant.

Evidence:

Ed had asserted that society needed religion for cooperation, because society works better when it cooperates. I responded that the Nazi's cooperated pretty well together.

Then this exchange followed. Ed said:

quote:
So, KE? If you were given a hard choice between prayer in school or Nazi style cooperation, which you you choose?

Just saying...

Ed.

Notice Ed even used the word STYLE in his question.

quote:
I'd take Nazi style cooperation every time. That doesn't mean we'd commit atrocities, but I'd worship the state and the party and what it could do for my country before I'd worship an invisible man in the sky.

But the point was, and is, that you can have a cooperative society without religion.

KE

Notice I used the word STYLE. And in responding to the above post of mine Ed cut off the last sentence stating that "(But) the point was, and is, that you can have a cooperative society without religion." I guess it is much harder to try and paint your opponent as a Nazi-lover if you leave that part in.

So, Ed separated out the last line, quoted the first, and posted this:

quote:

@ KnightEnder:

quote:

I'd take Nazi style cooperation every time. That doesn't mean we'd commit atrocities, but I'd worship the state and the party and what it could do for my country before I'd worship an invisible man in the sky. --KE

Ummm... OK.

I guess this shows that you trust Nazis more than you trust religion.

[shrugs] You got that right.--Ed

It is obvious that I said Nazi STYLE cooperation, not Nazis.

He did address the last line of my post, but standing on its own as if it had no bearing on the post it in which it was included. The easier to accuse me of trusting Nazis don't you know? I of course went on to point out that Nazi's probably wouldn't be crazy about my liberal, homo-loving ass.

The frequency of these "mistakes", honest though they sometimes are (like Koner's), combined with the posts of people like Ed who deliberately twist the words of people with whom they disagree, is appalling, it is dishonest, and it wastes time and degrades the quality of the forum.

We as a group should strive to be better than this. And people that repeatedly libel other members should be censured and/or suspended.

KE

[ June 24, 2005, 03:00 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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javelin
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I don't think people on this board have to much trouble distinquishing between what someone said, and what someone else SAID they said. I don't believe I KNOW when people are being deliberately deceptive about someone else's statement or not. I mean, you could say that I misrepresented what Ricardo was doing in the thread here , and maybe that'd be a fair judgement. It could also be stated that while I felt I was pointing out a despicable tactic, I also ended up having to make it clear that I had no idea whether Ricardo intentionally used this tactic or not. Should I have stated this upfront? Sure. I screwed up. Should I be banned? I don't think so - take a look at Ricardo's responses - should he be banned? I don't think so.

Better for us to work it out - look at the other people responding to our comments - they can think for themselves.

[ June 24, 2005, 03:11 PM: Message edited by: javelin ]

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FIJC
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I think you're starting to take this forum way too seriously and personally.
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Funean
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I agree, KE. While we do mostly strive to keep a civil tone (hey, OM, didja notice we were good?), and do pretty well at it, and self-police pretty well when we don't succeed, I think there are some tactics which are not acceptable even when delivered in a civil tone.

I don't know whether Ed's misstatements are purposeful, careless, or merely the result of a grave misunderstanding of what KE's been saying, but I do know that a great deal of time has been spent--probably at least 3 pages' worth--on members having to repeat themselves and correct errors and misstatements in others' posts and quotes, in that thread alone.

Mistakes do happen, but we all need to take more responsibility for reading the work of our fellow Ornerians. Most of us craft our arguments and our responses to others carefully, and it is at the very least disrespectful to read those entries carelessly, especially if you are planning to refute them.

It is not ever an acceptable strategy to twist others' words to suit your refutation, to belittle the original writer or their argument, or to make an extra point. Either your argument stands on its own and addresses the points of the other guy, or it falls on its own, having failed to meet the challenge of the opposing argument.

Don't free and respectful discussion of our ideas take precedence over "winning?" If "winning" becomes the point of our efforts here, we're done.


edited to add: I'm not sure there is a good way to "enforce" good behavior in this area, other than self-policing and asking everyone here to examine their own actions, because it's often unclear whether a misstatement is malicious or even purposeful. I can't quite get on board with suspensions for that reason, but I do know that I am reluctant to engage with members who have grossly misstated me in the past. Shunning is very effective among the Amish, you know. [Smile]

[ June 24, 2005, 03:17 PM: Message edited by: Funean ]

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KnightEnder
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Really FIJC? You wouldn't mind someone accusing you of saying that the US military personnel are dishonorable, or that you are a Nazi-lover?

And Jav, I said/meant "repeated" offenses.

KE

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KnightEnder
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Thanks Fun. It's always good to have our most reasonable member agree with me. [Wink]

KE

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javelin
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Funean, I do agree with everything you are saying (even though I'm sure I've violated half of that, more than once), but I'm not sure official censure is the best way to handle the problem.

I'm not sure how that'll work though - it's pretty tiring to see people directly insult each other's reading comprehension skills as a debate tactic.

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Funean
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I just edited my post to that effect, jav...realized I'd left it out. [Smile]

KE, you're taunting me, aren't you? Dangit!

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javelin
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KE - sorry - I see that now as the last thing stated in your post - I'm afraid the first half overwhelmed that - your opening statement applies to any deliberate mistatement, while the last half a sentence restricts it to repeated offenses. See how easy it is to misunderstand? *grrr - angry at self*
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potemkyn
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KE,

I believe that I brought up a similar issue about two months ago and very few people thought my complaints were reasonable, including you.

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javelin
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Can you link, potemkyn? I'd like to review, personally.
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potemkyn
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http://www.ornery.org/cgi-bin/ubbcgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=6;t=006170
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Funean
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I remember that, potemkyn.

If I recall correctly, that issue was more about people not respecting the line between people and ideas, and members being able to state that a particular line of discussion was becoming unnecessarily offensive, and request that it be toned down.

In this case, KE's talking about the deliberate or careless misstatement of others' words for the purpose of argument.

Both problems are inimical to free discussion, which has everything to do with ethical argumentation and respectful discourse.

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halfhaggis
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From About Ornery.org

quote:
If you post something and someone disagrees with your idea, their disagreement does not erase your original statement. There is no need to answer except to clarify or offer new material.
I think a lot of people get a little emotional and forget the above.

The page goes on to say

quote:
Personal attacks, mockery, or speculation about the motives of people posting here are not allowed, and such posts will be removed without notification. Repeated offenders will be banned from the site.
Hmmm. Curious.
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javelin
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Potemkyn - yes, I remember that now too. I was very disturbed by that entire thread.
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simplybiological
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good lord, everyone, LET IT GO.

If I took everything personally that people said about me/my beliefs on this site, I'd probably have to go kill myself for lack of anything positive left to hang onto.

KE, go snuggle your wife and your boys and take solace in the fact that NO ONE really thinks you're a nazi.

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KnightEnder
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That argument was about blanket statements. Particularly a blanket statement by RickyB. It was not the same because RickyB wasn't intentionally twisting a posters words around to insult that poster. RickyB wasn't misrepresenting what any poster said. RickyB simply stated that he thought religious people were "something" (gullible, stupid, delusional, I forget which) that Potemkyn took exception with. Whatever the case, it is not the same as this. Ricky didn't twist your words to make you look like you were something you're not.

KE

[ June 24, 2005, 04:08 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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halfhaggis
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Except his Neo-Nazi friends.

[Razz]

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javelin
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quote:
Originally posted by KnightEnder:
That argument was about blanket statements. Particularly a blanket statement by RickyB. It was not the same because RickyB wasn't intentionally twisting a posters words around to insult that poster. RickyB wasn't misrepresenting what any poster said. RickyB simply stated that he thought religious people were "something" (gullible, stupid, delusional, I forget which) that Potemkyn took exception with. Whatever the case, it is not the same as this. Ricky didn't twist your words to make you look like you were something you're not.

KE

See Funean's earlier response:

quote:

I remember that, potemkyn.

If I recall correctly, that issue was more about people not respecting the line between people and ideas, and members being able to state that a particular line of discussion was becoming unnecessarily offensive, and request that it be toned down.

In this case, KE's talking about the deliberate or careless misstatement of others' words for the purpose of argument.

Both problems are inimical to free discussion, which has everything to do with ethical argumentation and respectful discourse.


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KnightEnder
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Edited to add, I took out something immediately upon posting but apparently halfhaggis saw it anyway, so I feel compelled to put it back in so his comment makes sense.

I said. We had a long discussion during which most people felt that potemkyn was being too touchy.

Also, the Mod said that we should assume that most people are smart and not delusional.

How can we assume people that believe in invisible people are not delusional? I'll have to go look up the word. I'll be right back.

SB, they just went to Fry's so I'm all alone and in the mood to argue. [Smile]

KE

[ June 24, 2005, 04:13 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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OpsanusTau
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quote:
I think a lot of people get a little emotional and forget the above.
It's ineffective to discuss things with people without explaining at some point what you think their arguments are, and how your argument contradicts theirs.

It is likewise difficult to maintain a discussion if, when someone claims to have refuted your argument, you do not restate your argument together with your conviction that it is not refuted.

I think there's a middle ground, though, between superhuman debate where everybody miraculously understands what everybody else means, and arguments of unblemished logic stand like pillars of marble decorated with bas-relief of facts, and the "Nuh UH!" "Yes HUH!" of fabricating responses to one's own arguments out of whole cloth.

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KnightEnder
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delusional: the act of being deluded

deluded: to mislead the mind or judgment of

Sounds like religious people to me. Unless y'all mean to tell me that y'all don't really believe there is an invisible man in the sky? Or that y'all don't believe that a dead man rose up out of his grave and flew to a home in the sky that we can't see?

KE

[ June 24, 2005, 04:16 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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javelin
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I don't believe that there is an invisible man in the sky. I don't believe that a guy flew to a home in the sky that we can't see.

And if I did, it wouldn't necessarily be delusional, as far as you can prove, KE. It might SEEM delusional, but unless you can prove it, I'd suggest you stop saying it.

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KnightEnder
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See potemkyn, people can say I'm crazy or foolish for believing what I believe, but they can't say I'm a Nazi or a racist or classify me with other hateful groups without some kind of proof. And they can't do it by twisting my words.

KE

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KnightEnder
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No, unless you can prove it, I suggest you stop saying it, or whoever is saying it, or risk being called delusional. Of course you'd be in good company as 85% of our country is under the same delusion.

KE

[ June 24, 2005, 04:30 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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javelin
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You can't call someone delusional just because they can't prove something to you, KE, not and be accurate.
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KnightEnder
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If someone is under the delusion that there is an invisible man living in the sky watching what we do, why can't I say they are delusional?

KE

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KnightEnder
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And people that think that God actually talks to them are psychotically deluded.

delusional: a persistent false psychotic belief regarding the self or persons or objects outside the self

psychotic: characterized by defective or lost contact with reality

reality: the quality or state of being real

God ain't real. Therefore everything I have said is true. And if God is real, then reality has no meaning. We'd have to agree that ghosts, vampires, werewolves, and compassionate republicans are real.

KE

[ June 24, 2005, 04:37 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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javelin
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You can say what you want, KE, but whether or not what you are saying is right, well, that's the rub. And it is certainly insulting.

You do know that the only person who I've ever heard say this:

quote:
Unless y'all mean to tell me that y'all don't really believe there is an invisible man in the sky? Or that y'all don't believe that a dead man rose up out of his grave and flew to a home in the sky that we can't see?
as something that Christian's believe, is you?

You may believe these things are delusional and psychotic, but you've never bothered to prove it, and instead just insult people with it, 'cause you feel it's self evident. Others, on this forum, do not, and feel insulted by the implication. It would be appropriate, in my opinion, to either stop using the offending statement, or to prove it. Note: this would require you to prove that:

(a) People cannot be invisible.
(b) There is no invisible men in the sky.
(c) There is no invisible men in the sky watching us.
(d) That God has never talked to anyone.
(e) That a dead man has never risen from his grave
(f) That no man can fly
(g) That the dead man we say rose from the grave didn't get up and fly to this invisible place in the sky.

You'd also need to define what you mean by invisible, what you mean by man and men, what you mean by flying, what you mean by rising from the grave, etc.

Good luck with that.

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javelin
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quote:
God ain't real. Therefore everything I have said is true. And if God is real, then reality has no meaning. We'd have to agree that ghosts, vampires, werewolves, and compassionate republicans are real.
Are you being intentionally offensive?
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KnightEnder
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I need to prove that men can't be invisible? You're joking right? You've actually made me laugh out loud whether you were or not.

I'm saying what I believe. I'm stating reality as we know it. I'm tired of pretending that just because a delusion is pervasive that it is any more real than any other delusion. Why is it offensive to compare one made up character to another? There is no proof that any of those characters exist. You're not insisting that I act like they do, are you?

Oh, I was being jokingly intentionally offensive to republicans, if that is what you meant.

KE

[ June 24, 2005, 04:52 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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OpsanusTau
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...the fact that most claims of religion in general and Christianity in particular are not, in fact, falsifiable, removes both them from the realm of "definitively real" and KE from the burden of having to prove them (because they can't be proven).

I have always thought that accepting that something can be true without being "real" the way KE is using the word is what faith means.

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javelin
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quote:
I'm stating reality as we know it.
And I'm trying to state that what you believe to be reality that "we know" isn't.

I'm insisting that you have certain beliefs that you refuse to back up, and instead insult people for having different beliefs. You are insulting people who disagree with you, because they disagree with you. That's what this boils down to, KE.

And yes, men CAN be invisible.

Invisible Man

Not to mention that fact that if you can't see someone, even though they are there, that's considered "invisible". Can you see the men currently residing on the space station, up there in the sky? How'd they get there?

[ June 24, 2005, 04:54 PM: Message edited by: javelin ]

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javelin
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quote:
Originally posted by OpsanusTau:
...the fact that most claims of religion in general and Christianity in particular are not, in fact, falsifiable, removes both them from the realm of "definitively real" and KE from the burden of having to prove them (because they can't be proven).

I have always thought that accepting that something can be true without being "real" the way KE is using the word is what faith means.

It doesn't, however, give KE the right to be able to announce that people who hold these beliefs are "delusional", nor does it prove them to be delusional. I'm not arguing that KE needs to prove these people wrong or right, I'm saying he'd have to do so in order to call them "delusional" with any authority, and without being merely insulting.
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KnightEnder
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No, Jav, it isn't. What it boils down to is that you have an irrational illogical belief that you can't prove and you are upset with me for pointing it out.

I defined reality. And an actual being "God" doesn't fit into reality. He's not "real".

I showed you the reasoning and definitions behind my asserting that religious people are delusional. You just don't like the logical conclusion. Perhaps you should embrace your delusion and call it faith like all the rest of the religious people?

KE

[ June 24, 2005, 04:57 PM: Message edited by: KnightEnder ]

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Funean
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Jeez, drive home and everything goes to pot.

Knock it off, you two!!

Let's get back to the point of it all. (me--no just kidding)

It is bad to insult other members of Ornery, particularly as a debate tactic.

It is also bad to be careless with meanings, particularly when the meaningful portions involved were written by other people.

It is inexcuseable to deliberately distort or reverse the words of another poster to "win" an argument or to make the other poster look bad.

Don't do these things.

Oh yeah, and:

It is bad to get into a fight with another poster about a tangential issue from an earlier argument during a thread about better behavior on Ornery. [Razz]

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KnightEnder
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Alls fair as long as it is honest and you can back up your argument with logic and or evidence. I'm not upset about people being mean, I'm upset about people lying to make other people look bad, or to win an argument. I dish it out, and I can take it, but I don't lie.

KE

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javelin
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KE, let's take this here, shall we?
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Mormegil
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quote:
If someone is under the delusion that there is an invisible man living in the sky watching what we do, why can't I say they are delusional?
You can. It's rude, and makes you look like a jerk, so maybe you *shouldn't*, but you can.

Nice straw man, by the way, which is ironic considering you started a thread about misrepresenting others' arguments.

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kenmeer livermaile
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Wow. Cool. Real-life ultimate camouflage.

I think the umbrage gets taken at the word 'delusional'. It has an unpleasant connotation.
It isn't, however, totally incorrect:

"an erroneous belief that is held in the face of evidence to the contrary"

Remove erroneous and it holds true: there is far FAR more evidence of the nonexistence of God than there is of God's existence. This, however, does not make it an erroneous belief.

Me? I believe there's a very visible man in the sky, big as all the horizon, whom we can't see because he's wearing a sky-colored version of one of them Jap military invisiblity suits.

Regarding the invisible suit article, it metaphorically augments the question Oriental ancients ask of food: Do I eat it or does it eat me?

I doubt we'll anytime soon improve on the ancient Pythagorean conceit of Celestial Spheres and their Musdic which we can't hear because it is ever present, the eternal cosmic backdrop.

The miracle of existence seems far too great for us to embrace. Thus, believeth I, do we invent gods and telological cosmologies and such: to provide us some shelter from the unrelenting majesty of It All. Why, even the sun, mere Sol, modest star on the outskirts of galactic town, is too bright to stare at with the naked eye, and will burn one dry if one stays out in it too long.

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