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User Profile: HappyStretchedThin

HappyStretchedThin

Member Since: January 09, 2011

Comments

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  • [25] October 11, 2014 at 11:07am

    @Raptur,
    I laid out 7 points of what defines a cult. Who or what they worship was NOT included in them, because once you begin the claim that anything that’s NOT YOUR specific brand of Christianity (or other religion) is a “cult” then you’ve completely distorted the core meaning of what a cult IS. Cults have many different forms of unverifiable belief systems as a basis. But what they SHARE is all of the points I mentioned. Since the LDS share NONE of those characteristics, classifying them as a “cult” tells more about YOU than it does about your accusation. It’s obvious you have no clue what the word means, or even care–your only agenda is to discredit anything that doesn’t conform to your narrow beliefs. Then you ADD evidence to this extreme and extremely distorting bias by citing a youtube video which consists of an endless string of context-free quotes from high profile Mormons all FRAMED as if they’re condemning you, Christianity, and all Christians through time. But in EVERY single one of those quotes, IN CONTEXT, what those leaders were ACTUALLY attacking is the same thing YOU attack: false doctrine.
    There’s no need to distort like this. Just be open and honest and come at it head on. Show me you UNDERSTAND LDS doctrine FIRST, THEN if you still disagree then we have SUBSTANCE to argue. But don’t LIE first, by misrepresenting LDS beliefs, then INSISTING you’re right. You just look foolishly partisan that way. Kinda “Wendy Davis”-ish…

  • [44] October 11, 2014 at 9:46am

    Oh Muscles and Jonny.
    You’re as ideologically blind on religion as liberals are when they talk about politics.
    Let’s be objective for a minute: a cult has defining characteristics. Which one applies to the LDS.
    1. Leaders profit personally – the LDS are all volunteer
    2. Leaders manipulate followers to maintain personal power – LDS callings to leadership rotate
    3. Leaders centralize control – LDS operates under principles of local control
    4. Leaders discourage independent thinking – missionaries open with “investigate what we’re testifying and find out for yourself”
    5. Leaders require unquestioning loyalty to their person – LDS encourage personal testimony discovery of principles, not people, with the sole exception of Jesus Christ who they worship
    6. Leaders are unaccountable to outside authorities – LDS believe God has empowered secular authorities, so citizens should uphold legal authorities
    7. Any dissent brings swift and severe punishment, breaks bring shunning – excommunications for public rebellions against beliefs do happen, but always in view of reintegration in the future should the person change their mind.
    It doesn’t walk like, talk like, smell like, feel like, or even look like the cult duck you’re claiming.

  • [18] September 26, 2014 at 9:30am

    I can imagine very little MORE nonsensical than a government regulator uttering the words “common sense rule”.

  • [2] September 24, 2014 at 11:44pm

    Thoroughly amazed by some of the comments here. How eager some of you are to show how knowledgeable you are on the finer points of law, police tactics, and the broader constitutional and social issues of race in America, the 2nd Amendment, and police brutality.
    All based on a short article (did you read it even?) with very few of the key facts, a 1:22 video with no sound, and ZERO context for any of your learned and reasoned judgments.
    Some of you have the same mob mentality our founding fathers wrote a Constitution to AVOID.
    The grand jury saw ALL the evidence and concluded that there was not enough to convict the officer involved.
    Did you know, for example, that the police had received a 911 call witnessing to an armed man waving a gun around, possibly pointing it at people? These cops had armor on. That MEANS something. They were prepared to protect themselves. Do you HONESTLY think it was because they just randomly wanted to kill someone SAFELY that day?
    The only 9 people qualified to judge this, in presence of all the facts, independent of the police and of the family of the deceased or other interested parties, are the Grand jury. They made the call. the rest of you are concluding without all the facts.
    Or lying, like blount (in the same post he accuses conservatives of making things up) claiming that he saw the whole video from him picking up the weapon to him getting shot, because no such video exists or has been released.

    Responses (5) +
  • September 24, 2014 at 7:08pm

    LordJosh: Doubling down on not fact checking yourself isn’t helping your image.
    Sasquatch: “no matter how minor that harassment might be” < So you DO make distinctions between degrees of evil (even if we disagree). This is a good sign, even if your statement that there’s not much difference between communist dictatorship and what we have now is evidence of appalling willful cecity.
    Maybe you’re a traffic anarchist too, and refuse to stop on red. Is THAT not also a form of “seizure” by your logic? It certainly impedes individual freedoms! Except that it doesn’t really. Stopping for a red is a way to temporarily allow for opposing interests (cars going the other way) to also have freedom with a minimum of interference.
    A checkpoint (NOT with ID checks–that’s NOT what we’re talking about here), that lasts 25 seconds on ave. has only ONE difference with a red light: that officers are walking up to your vehicle, asking questions, looking in eyes and smelling breath. USSC has ruled–that doesn’t constitute a violation of search and seizure.
    Accidents can happen with no fault. With fault, law should judge, as you say. But an accident with fault DUE to NEGLIGENCE deserves different penalty, just as murder with intent is different from manslaughter. Laws SHOULD take into account altered states of mind. All I’m saying.
    Simple test: who do you know in the US that is in prison for political opinions? We’re not East Germany. By a longshot.

  • September 24, 2014 at 6:49pm

    Notmyproblem: Well said. The ACA is an egregious affront to the Constitution. And the constitutionalist judges who dissented said so, therefore agreeing with you and me. Dittos for Roe v. Wade (which didn’t give women the right to murder babies, per se, but rather converted murdering babies into a question of privacy that the state didn’t have the right to inquire about–stupid legal decision and disastrous moral consequences–I’m with you!).
    But are you REALLY trying to say that the refusal to treat an officer of the law like a regular human being who’s just trying to keep the community safe is equivalent to those two?
    The Supreme Court DID agree that pulling someone over for a search, or further check than looking in eyes and smelling breath and maybe asking a few questions to see about slurred speech, for example, required Probable Cause.
    But they also said merely setting up a checkpoint of this nature was equivalent to setting up a stoplight in the nature of the “intrusion” it would be on the average citizen, and therefore did NOT constitute a violation of the 4th A.
    Side question: to whom should we appeal when the Supremes rule wrong?

  • September 24, 2014 at 6:38pm

    Barkonius: I appreciate your balance in arguing. Yes, mostly my point is just not to provoke them, but it goes a little beyond that. I don’t think this guy provoked, but he refused a reasonable request for no good reason, and it’s because he just flatly ideologically and blindly refused to give the officer any benefit of any doubt whatsoever. I want us to treat an officer the way we’d treat the president, and a neighbor–as an equal who we respect.
    You are RIGHT to be vigilant about incremental mission-creep, even here, but it’s not naiveté that leads me to call you out on your idea that the US is a police-state–on the contrary: it’s because I understand and have studied actual police-states. There are fundamental differences that if we’re not crystal clear on, we’ll waste our energies attacking friendlies rather than the real enemies of our liberty. And that idea frosts my twinkie just a little too much to let it pass. We DON’T have a dictator. The officers here are UNIFORMED (i.e. NOT clandestine agents of a secret police force). They are doing their best to let people THROUGH as quickly as possible, NOT checking EVERYONE for papers and anything else to find something wrong. They’re NOT trying to scare everyone or impose a feeling of fear that even a false denunciation could send them to prison. THAT’s what police states are like. You minimize the horrors of totalitarianism when you fail to see we’re not it.

  • [-1] September 24, 2014 at 6:27pm

    2GodBe: Furthermore, you are still VERY confused on the nature of rights in this country and on the historical causes of the Revolution. Life, Liberty, and Pursuit of happiness earned the label of inalienable, the right to have papers and persons held inviolate is QUITE alienable, as your own historical examples show. The Constitution was intended to limit govt agents from OVERusing what is otherwise a PERFECTLY legitimate right of the state. Look, not everyone in a society follows the law. We need ppl to enforce laws. They need power to enforce them. They should have rules to stop them from abusing the power. But they DO use the power for GOOD, when they exercise it properly.
    In the time of the Revolution, BY CONTRAST, and by your OWN admission, police forces, the judicial branch, and govt in general was being ABUSED–it was being employed in an arbitrary way to serve the whims of a dictator, not being used in a RATIONAL way to serve the PEOPLE.
    There’s no comparison here!
    Does govt tax too much? YES! Does it mission creep and bloat? YES! Are politicians corrupt? YES! But we still have free elections, we still live in a mostly peaceful and free society, the police and judiciary are NOT arbitrary, and are AFRAID of public opinion turning against them.
    You’re straining at a gnat here, bro. and missing the WHOLE POINT of the American freedom in the process.

  • September 24, 2014 at 6:16pm

    2GodBe: The “hothead” comment was not directed at you, but at Force2Be.
    To substance: debates like this are good for refining arguments. I’ll concede that you’re right on the letter of my first words. I overstated my point. I never meant to suggest that exercising a right constitutes probable cause IN AND OF ITSELF. In my subsequent comments I hope that has been clear. However, it would be naive for you and could be mortally dangerous for a cop to NEVER take “hiding” behaviors as motive to investigate further, which is what YOU are suggesting. Suspicion or a hunch can legitimately be considered necessary but insufficient. Your cited case DOES go to that point, but you also are overstating: you don’t have the context or standing to be able to judge WHAT it was that cop was using as his PC justification for taking action. Where your case goes too far is to equate the situation of a cop following a citizen around to a fixed position sobriety checkpoint where cops DO have the constitutional right to stop everyone for the time of a red light, and DO have the right to inspect breath, eyes, and behaviors. They MUST have PC to have the RIGHT to check papers, but they can ASK for any kind of cooperation and reasonable people should VOLUNTEER it. Your stubbornly adversarial position vis-a-vis authority in general is self-perpetuating, emotionally based, and self-destructive.

  • September 24, 2014 at 4:08pm

    Bulte: Let me try again: http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Michigan_Department_of_State_Police_v._Sitz/Opinion_of_the_Court
    But I’m glad for your quote and for your ignorance, because it gives me a chance to clear something up for more neutral parties who would benefit by a little precision, fact, and sound reasoning.
    #1: This was a Supreme Court case and therefore applies everywhere, not just MI.
    #2: and more importantly, the REAL quote is this: Those who would give up ESSENTIAL liberty to purchase a LITTLE TEMPORARY safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. The words you’ve taken out MEAN something. Franklin wasn’t trying to establish a hierarchy of importance between liberty and security, with security on the bottom, but rather make the case that giving up EITHER one for the other WITHOUT good reasons leads to the loss of both. If freedom can be defined as the power to act, what power to act are you expanding when you withhold your ID from an officer who asks for it? If safety can be defined as the freedom from harm or fear of harm, what action is more likely to keep you free from harm/fear of harm: letting an officer have your ID for a few seconds, or withholding it?
    Be VERY careful thinking these through–I am NOT presuming you’re guilty here. Even an innocent person faced with the choice, restricts both freedom and safety when refusing an officer’s reasonable requests. If they abuse, call them out legally later, don’t refuse.

  • [-2] September 24, 2014 at 3:54pm

    SWH: You should probably spend a little more time reading the novels behind the movies, my friend. When you get passively fed by an image, what you from even a very good movie tends to be overshadowed by the emotional impact it has on you. If you had actually read George Orwell’s 1984, you’d know it was about totalitarianism. And you’d ALSO have your logic circuits firing to be able to distinguish between ACTUAL 1940s-50s style totalitarianism and what we’re living in now. My guess is, you’d also expand your observational powers to be able to see the difference between a home visit to a target, and a sobriety checkpoint with no targets and no vehicles being searched without PC.
    Barkonius: Checkpoints aren’t examples of cops treating you as suspects, they’re examples of cops treating motorists as motorists, and letting everyone through in under the time it takes to stop at a red light, unless they have PC to stop and search. How does me promoting logical and reasonable respect for officers exercising constitutional authorities constitute justifying the clear abuses of power you’re claiming? You may be tired of conservatives, but logic isn’t on your side on this one. Upholding constitutional authority does not a statist apologist make. Try again.

  • [-2] September 24, 2014 at 2:28pm

    Buster: Your reply comes closest to making me re-examine my main point. I’m arguing for greater respect of law enforcement in general, but I’m NOT blind to the fact that power corrupts and that officers of the law are also fallible human beings who we, as citizens, should be vigilant to keep a proper check on. To the extent that this officer lost control, he should be put in his place–by the citizen, and by his superior officer. Like with overly heated exchanges between regular human beings with no power differential, the solution should be apologies, a handshake, and getting on with life.
    I’m just insisting on the point that the point on which this motorist chose to stand up for his constitutional rights is asinine and needlessly inflamed the situation. This does NOT excuse the officer who lost his cool–I’m just not talking about his side of the equation as much.

  • [-1] September 24, 2014 at 2:23pm

    2God: The case you site bears little resemblance to the case at hand. I’m not excusing all police of any abuse of authority, or implying that any and all hunches rise to the level of PC. The link in my most recent comment points to constitutionality of checkpoints, and behavior indicative of criminal activity (such as attempting to hide evidence from uniformed officers) can indeed be a necessary but insufficient part of the PC test. The cops, even for a guilty person, must satisfy ALL PC requirements for pulling someone over–as you and I both agree. But none of that gets to the heart of your core confusion here: why stand on principle HERE? Why over a 20 second sobriety checkpoint? The point is that reasonable human beings recognize the need for authorities as a general principle, and also recognize that it costs them NOTHING (no substantial liberty whatsoever is lost) by volunteering to show one’s ID EVEN IF it’s technically not obligatory.
    Dejure: Correct, but again, that’s not what’s going on here. This is not a barricade to check for papers. There are tightly controlled rules to keep this constitutional, otherwise the 4A WOULD kick in. But checkpoints for a brief scan for signs of insobriety have been upheld, per link in my most recent comment.
    Force2Be: Do you listen to Glen Beck. Like ever? Resistance is NOT the way to solve a police state (which this isn’t, by a longshot!): it’s love, honor, virtue, and courage. Sit down, hothead.

  • [-3] September 24, 2014 at 1:56pm

    Capncrumbles: You’ve misread my attitude completely. You’ll probably misread the opinion which made the checkpoints constitutional too. But here it is in case:
    http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Michigan_Department_of_State_Police_v._Sitz/O
    SanDiegoDave: You’re quite right. But that’s mischaracterizing what’s going on here. It’s not a chance for cops to stop everyone and make them prove they’re worthy of legally driving before moving on. It’s more like a stoplight-length wait while an officer smells your breath, looks you in the eye, and waves you on. Average stop time cited in the above opinion was 25 sec. It’s not a blanket amnesty for them to do whatever they want because they blocked your road.
    LordJosh: Yes, PC has standards. And proof in court has yet higher standards. To the extent the cops did not meet the standard, I will apologize and agree with any court challenge to their misbehavior. I don’t excuse them for everything. However, assuming equal burden of proof, your turn now to demonstrate to me that they did NOT have PC. Can you smell his breath through the video? Do you know which top 10 wanted posters are extant in IL atm that perhaps this motorist looks like? Better to err on the side of caution, no? A false accusation costs 5 minutes and a little wounded pride. If this motorist HAD been dangerous, it would have been worth it.
    Mykle: I agree, wouldn’t let them search my house, that’s not what’s going on here. It IS legal per link above.

  • [1] September 24, 2014 at 1:42pm

    MrDave: Rehnquist offered the opinion. Scalia agreed. Stevens wrote the dissent. Check facts first, then offer opinions. It’s a good rule of thumb to prevent you from looking like an idiot.
    LordJosh: I suggest reading the ACTUAL opinion (here: http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Michigan_Department_of_State_Police_v._Sitz/Opinion_of_the_Court), but since you haven’t, I’ll enlighten you. What you claim it says, it doesn’t. Check facts first, then offer opinions. It’s a good rule of thumb to prevent you from looking like an idiot.
    Sasquatch: I love your passion, bro, but if you SERIOUSLY can’t distinguish a HUGE moral difference between a sobriety checkpoint where uniformed cops are waving people on in less than the time it takes for a stoplight unless they see signs of drunkenness (after which they STILL have to carefully show PC for each case) and a SECRET police organization designed to uphold a dictatorship through fear of the population, then I submit that you understand NEITHER the American constitution NOR the horrors of Communist East Germany. That and you’ve got deeper problems than I’m qualified to help with.
    Every consideration the cops make at these checkpoints is to MINIMIZE the intrusion.
    p.s. your logic on DUI laws would also put laws on parking meters, traffic lights, and separate degrees for murder out of commission. Are you really that anarchist? And it’s fallacious logic too: having an accident isn’t criminal.

  • [-6] September 24, 2014 at 12:54am

    p.s. When speaking of law enforcement, as opposed to Regulators (which is a category, I think even you would agree, we should be careful to distinguish), every time they find something wrong and legally gather the evidence to make it stick in court, our lives and communities get a little better. Credit where credit is due, right?

  • [-5] September 24, 2014 at 12:52am

    Please excuse my overly broad brush. Of course not every Libertarian is of the Ron Paul variety, always making stands on principle, never actually using his influence to get anything passed into law, even when he’s right.
    You seem like the kind of suspicion you hold isn’t out of bounds at all. You merely have a healthy distrust of power in all its forms because you understand the corrupting nature of power. Fair enough: may the suspicion be mutual.
    But please don’t tip over from there into putting quotes around the word authority as if no such real and constitutional thing exists. That would be the beginning of making yourself into the law. Even government officials have some legitimate and necessary functions. All ask is that we all approach them as if they’re worthy of the same respect they ask of us.

  • September 24, 2014 at 12:11am

    Because, Sasquatch, if you’ll get off your high horse long enough to read the actual opinion, the nature of DUI is categorically different than the other kinds of crimes you mentioned. It’s NOT a crime to drink, or to become drunk, but it IS a crime to operate a vehicle while under the influence. Are we agreed so far? So how do you go about punishing the other crimes you mentioned? You wait for the crime to happen, get a warrant or act on probable cause, then arrest the perp and send in the proof. When DUI happens, it’s almost ALWAYS at the scene of an accident before cops can KNOW a crime was occuring. With MINIMAL intrusion (and the decision placed some pretty tight limits on this–please, by all means, get educated on your rights), we can catch these perps BEFORE life and limb are threatened. Be careful not to let them make a checkpoint a fishing expedition, yes. But stand on principle over showing ID and registration? Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater, bro.

  • [75] September 23, 2014 at 11:03pm

    Policepeople have a tough job. They deal with the idiots of society all day long, are only called when something goes terribly wrong, and are treated with disrespect and suspicion by almost everyone they have to deal with directly. And to top it all off, their job consists of accusing people of things and gathering evidence BEFORE experts, scientists, and judicial authorities decide what accusations hold up, and which ones are baseless.
    You libertarians are so concerned about the right to keep an ID in your pocket rather than let a uniformed authority check it for a second, as he’s been ordered to do for everyone else, on the principle that he needs probable cause to suspect you in the first place–aren’t you being a little hypocritical here? In effect, YOU’RE suspecting the OFFICER of abuse of authority without probable cause.
    A guy like this that cuts off his nose to spite his face, standing stupidly on the wrong principle (YES, technically it’s his right–no dispute there), is behaving like someone with something to hide and finding any way he can to weasel out of compliance with a proper authority. Cops, at that point, DO have probable cause, imho, to at least CHECK to confirm or deny their suspicions.
    Dude deserved his 15 minute harassment, deserved a cop’s accusations, and then deserved to drive away free because it was proven baseless.
    Let them keep the peace, people.

    Responses (37) +
  • [14] September 19, 2014 at 8:20pm

    I find that both appropriate and curiously easy to pronounce.

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