Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – I think this bizarre Christian claim deserves a post of its own

My adversary on Kaleidoscope has come out with this curious thing as an answer to my comment “It is, of course, no surprise at all that our author here won’t answer these questions either: “For some reason this god wanted to keep humans ignorant of what good and evil are. Why? Your god wanted Hitler to do what he did, since Christians claim that *everything* is their god’s will. This god repeatedly uses horrible means to do what *it* wants, a completely selfish being. This god works with evil repeatedly, intentionally releasing Satan to corrupt the christians left after this god kills everyone else (Revelation 19-21). Is this a good act? one would hope you would say not.””

“Vel:

I’ll answer that last question. You throw so much out that it’s hard to answer it all. God wanted to keep humans “ignorant” of good and evil so he could become their good and evil. But in deciding to “become like God,” they can now make their own decisions about good and evil. Unfortunately, they do that with their limited understanding, and someone like Hitler arises, disobeying God’s commands at every turn, threatening the world, and still you blame God for what he did because God didn’t stop him. It is not selfish: it’s God allowing you and me and Hitler to have free will.

And I affirm that all God’s acts are good. He has warned us about the end of the world. It’s our choice to obey or not. Yes, I know. You don’t believe the God of the Bible allows us to have a choice. Another topic on which you and I disagree.

Have a nice day, Vel.”

This, in the most curious nutshell, is why I stand against religion, the acceptance of tyranny, harm and the spread of lies that it engenders.  The above claim is weirdly like Christian Gnosticism but from Bizarro World.

This was my response

Then answer what questions you want to answer, author.  I see you are trying yet more excuses. 

So, you say that “God wanted to keep humans “ignorant” of good and evil so he could become their good and evil.”
So, the good and evil that the fruit would give knowledge about isn’t the same as the actions of this god which wants to be a good and evil unto itself?   that’s what your claim means.  Wow.  And your god is evil too.  that’s interesting to know. 
Per your invented story, this god knows a good and evil that is not what he wants humans to know.  There is a good and evil beyond your god and humans now have the truth and we can see that your god isn’t quite what it claims.
I know the history of Hitler pretty well.  If you compare it to the actions of this god described in the bible, Hitler does what this god does and what this god wants.  Hitler was a Christian, author.  He cites the bible when this god claims that the Jews deserve death for not accepting this messiah. Per your bible, Jesus Christ says that anyone who doesn’t want him as king should be brought before him and killed (Luke 19).  yes, that’s part of a parable, and the parable is about Jesus being the king of kings.  You can offer another interpretation if you can come up with one. 
Again, no free will in the bible.  “20 For it was the Lord’s doing to harden their hearts so that they would come against Israel in battle, in order that they might be utterly destroyed, and might receive no mercy, but be exterminated, just as the Lord had commanded Moses.” – Joshua 11  another good example.  We don’t just disagree, author, you intentionally lie about what your bible says and I can support my position with chapter and verse. 
You claim you confirm that all of this god’s acts are good.  Your opinion is meaningless, coming from someone who would accept any action from this god.  If your claim is right, I know good and evil and I know your god is evil; I don’t accept its attempts to insist it is a good and evil separate from the good and evil from the tree. 

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – the continued failure of apologetics

I follow this particular Christian’s blog, The Kaleidoscope of Culture, which is a rather curious mix of apologetics and other things.  The author does occasionally write a reply to my comments but he consistently never actually replies to me in the comments, only putting his response in a separate comment. Thus, his replies go unanswered if I’m not actively looking for them.  it seems most curious that he chooses to try to obscure himself this way.

He recently had this post, The Limits of Apologetics, which is in effect an excuse why apologetics fail constantly.  As usual, excuses are given and questions are ignored by the apologist.  Here is my rebuttal of the original post  and then below, an rebuttal of the further excuses given.  As usual, the excuses given by a Christian dig them in deeper in to the morass of their contradictory nonsense.  One knows that as soon as a Christian mentions Hitler, it won’t end well for them.

So, to my questions: “We have claims of miracles, but funny how this god never does them where anyone but a believer can see. This god never allows a Christian to heal like the bible promises, no Christian goes to a pediatric cancer ward and clears it out. Why? Selfishness? Doubt?”

you answer “Neither of course, though perhaps doubt is one. But you know your Bible well enough that you should know the answer isn’t that simple. (Luke 4: 20 – 30; Mark 6: 1 – 6; Romans 8: 18 – 24; 2 Kings 13: 14; 1 Timothy 5: 23; 2 Cor 12: 9, John 16: 1 -33). As I said earlier, I wish I knew how best to help you.”

We have you “wishing” you could “help” me, but you have failed so far. Your bible has that this god will answer any request from one of its believers, so why does your “wish” aka prayer go unfulfilled? You say “neither” but you have no answer at all on what the reason supposedly is.

As for the answers, they are indeed that simple as we’ll see in the very verses you indicate, especially John 16. Nothing about why Christians like you fail to be able to do what the bible promises all baptized believes in christ can do. There are some pretty fine human excuses like the ones you use.

Let’s look at these various bible verses you want me to look at:

“20 And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21 Then he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” 22 All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth. They said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” 23 He said to them, “Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, ‘Doctor, cure yourself!’ And you will say, ‘Do here also in your hometown the things that we have heard you did at Capernaum.’” 24 And he said, “Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in the prophet’s hometown. 25 But the truth is, there were many widows in Israel in the time of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, and there was a severe famine over all the land; 26 yet Elijah was sent to none of them except to a widow at Zarephath in Sidon. 27 There were also many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed except Naaman the Syrian.” 28 When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with rage. 29 They got up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they might hurl him off the cliff. 30 But he passed through the midst of them and went on his way.” Luke 4: 20-30

This is such a classic excuse for a charlatan. That a charlatan can’t get away with lies to those who know them is obvious. Why does JC has to use such a classic excuse for why he fails? This doesn’t work very well with the common Christian claim that “everyone” knows about him and this god from Romans 1 and JC’s supposed own comments that his miracles are to be why people should believe in him. You can’t have it both ways. Either the miracles are believable or they aren’t. Your god, by default of its supposed attributes, can always make a believable miracle, being omnipotent and all. That it can’t and Christians are stuck with blaming humans and evidently the all-powerful strength of their disbelief, is telling.

“6 He left that place and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. 2 On the sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astounded. They said, “Where did this man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been given to him? What deeds of power are being done by his hands! 3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him. 4 Then Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honor, except in their hometown, and among their own kin, and in their own house.” 5 And he could do no deed of power there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and cured them. 6 And he was amazed at their unbelief.” Mark 6

Same story, same nonsense. However, in this one, JC *can’t* do anything, just like a psychic who claims that they can read minds and offers the excuse that they can’t work in the presence of doubters. How convenient and how silly when JC and Christians claim that this god is omnipotent.

“18 I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us.” – Romans 8

Typical excuse of any charlatan who wants people to pay them now when they know nothing will happen and they have to get out of town. Paul was certain that JC would be back during his lifetime (Romans 8 “about to be revealed”, 1 Thessalonians 4 “that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord”), and Romans 13 “the day is at hand”). Paul died a false prophet. Christians now of course try to claim that ‘near’ doesn’t *really* mean near and ‘we’ doesn’t really mean ‘we’.

14 Now when Elisha had fallen sick with the illness of which he was to die, King Joash of Israel went down to him, and wept before him, crying, “My father, my father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!”” – 2 Kings 13

So, author, where does the OT have that believers in JC can do healing? Always interesting when a Christian runs to the OT that they ignore when convenient.

23 No longer drink only water, but take a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments.” – 1 Timothy 5

Paul showing that he has no idea he is supposed to be able to do miracles. It’s as if, hmmm, he has no idea what the gospels actually said or Acts or what the book of james claimed. Now, how could that be unless he never read the gospels? This would make sense since he knows precious little about JC’s supposed life.

but he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.”” – 2 Corinthians

Interesting for a man who supposedly did miracles per Acts saying this. It’s another classic excuse, that somehow that the lack of ability to do anything now has to be claimed as evidence of the ability to do something. This kind Christian has listed all of the times Jesus and Paul disagree: http://www.voiceofjesus.org/paulvsjesus.html

16 “I have said these things to you to keep you from stumbling. They will put you out of the synagogues. Indeed, an hour is coming when those who kill you will think that by doing so they are offering worship to God. And they will do this because they have not known the Father or me. But I have said these things to you so that when their hour comes you may remember that I told you about them.

“I did not say these things to you from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going to him who sent me; yet none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your hearts. Nevertheless I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate] will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will prove the world wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: about sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will see me no longer; 11 about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.

12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own, but will speak whatever he hears, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. 14 He will glorify me, because he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine. For this reason I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.

16 “A little while, and you will no longer see me, and again a little while, and you will see me.” 17 Then some of his disciples said to one another, “What does he mean by saying to us, ‘A little while, and you will no longer see me, and again a little while, and you will see me’; and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” 18 They said, “What does he mean by this ‘a little while’? We do not know what he is talking about.” 19 Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them, “Are you discussing among yourselves what I meant when I said, ‘A little while, and you will no longer see me, and again a little while, and you will see me’? 20 Very truly, I tell you, you will weep and mourn, but the world will rejoice; you will have pain, but your pain will turn into joy. 21 When a woman is in labor, she has pain, because her hour has come. But when her child is born, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy of having brought a human being into the world. 22 So you have pain now; but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you. 23 On that day you will ask nothing of me. Very truly, I tell you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. 24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.

25 “I have said these things to you in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures, but will tell you plainly of the Father. 26 On that day you will ask in my name. I do not say to you that I will ask the Father on your behalf; 27 for the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father and have come into the world; again, I am leaving the world and am going to the Father.”

29 His disciples said, “Yes, now you are speaking plainly, not in any figure of speech! 30 Now we know that you know all things, and do not need to have anyone question you; by this we believe that you came from God.” 31 Jesus answered them, “Do you now believe? 32 The hour is coming, indeed it has come, when you will be scattered, each one to his home, and you will leave me alone. Yet I am not alone because the Father is with me. 33 I have said this to you, so that in me you may have peace. In the world you face persecution. But take courage; I have conquered the world!” – John 16

So here we have JC saying that anything asked for in his name will be given, no exceptions. Christians get upset with this part since they know that despite their prayers and asking for things in JC’s name, nothing happens. They must claim that this god has exceptions, which is based in nothing but their admission that the bible must be wrong. They must claim that there is some “greater” reason why they don’t get what they pray for when again, that has no basis in their bible. The apostles said this was plain to them as literally stated, no apologetics needed.

But modern Christian insist that their interpretations are what is right, not a literal reading.

It is, of course, no surprise at all that our author here won’t answer these questions either: “For some reason this god wanted to keep humans ignorant of what good and evil are. Why? Your god wanted Hitler to do what he did, since Christians claim that *everything* is their god’s will. This god repeatedly uses horrible means to do what *it* wants, a completely selfish being. This god works with evil repeatedly, intentionally releasing Satan to corrupt the christians left after this god kills everyone else (Revelation 19-21). Is this a good act? one would hope you would say not.”

These are the questions that Christians won’t answer.

Addendum:  Our author is evidently afraid of me since he claims that his family tells him to never meet me (I never asked).  I had to ask:

“I’m sorry you are so frightened of me that you had to make up things to tell your family so they would be frightened too. So exactly how many atheist women have done anything violent, and how many conservative Christians have? That your have no trust in your god is evident. What loving caring god would allow someone to harm its chosen? That’s a direct question, author. Will you answer it? You could have said to your son (“Dad, you don’t really know. She could be anyone!”) any of these things from your bible: https://www.openbible.info/topics/protection

What the Boss Likes – my new sticker for my vehicle

After my post about nuke craters, and Dr. Strangelove, Bill kindly pointed me to a friend of his’ website all about the B-52 and the SAC program.   There were stickers about the fictional Burpleson AFB which I just had to have.  the website also has a great sample story from the anthologies offered, which gives you an idea of how crazy it was in a B-52.

So here is my new sticker and a shot of the rest of those decorating my car.

 

What the Boss likes: or at least what the Boss finds facinating, nuke craters

Having grown up with the threat of nuclear war, I’ve always been fascinated by nuclear bombs.   I almost became a nuclear weapons technician in my abortive attempt to be in the USAF.  And in my college days, I took a couple of aerial/satellite imaging courses so I love the new version of Google Earth.  It’s really unbelievable for what you can see.

Here a link to quite a view.   You’ll have to use Chrome (and maybe some other internet providers) to see it right.

This is Sedan crater, one of the tests to see if nukes could be use for civilian purposes.  Here’s a good article on a handful of notable craters.

And here is a view of a *lot* of craters.  Sedan is the one in the lower right corner.

Yep, humans are essentially insane a lot of the time.  If you continue to hit the “-” button on the view in google earth, you’ll see just how close these sites are to major cities.  there’s also a little compass at the bottom so you can change which way is north on the image you are looking at.  To find scale, click on the ruler looking icon on the left frame, and click two spots to find out the distance between them.  For example, the Sedan crater is around 425 meters across.

This is a major time waster 🙂  so don’t say I didn’t warn you

 

 

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – Christian prayers don’t work again, news at at 11

This from the Pew Foundation:

“The virus also has impacted Americans’ religious behaviors. More than half of all U.S. adults (55%) say they have prayed for an end to the spread of coronavirus. Large majorities of Americans who pray daily (86%) and of U.S. Christians (73%) have taken to prayer during the outbreak – but so have some who say they seldom or never pray and people who say they do not belong to any religion (15% and 24%, respectively).”

So, we have Christians who fail.  Their prayers aren’t answered and they get sick and die just like the rest of us.  Their god does nothing.

Despite these promises:

“Go into all the world and proclaim the good news[d] to the whole creation. 16 The one who believes and is baptized will be saved; but the one who does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: by using my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up snakes in their hands,[e] and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.” – Mark 16

Some Christians will know that these verses were added hundreds of years after.  They get upset if you mention that other Christians don’t have a problem with this claim.

12 Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If in my name you ask me[e] for anything, I will do it.”  – John 14

I’ve had a christian claim that John 14 doesn’t mention “miracles”.  I asked him if JC’s “works” were building a really great wall then.  He ran away.

13 Are any among you suffering? They should pray. Are any cheerful? They should sing songs of praise. 14 Are any among you sick? They should call for the elders of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 The prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise them up; and anyone who has committed sins will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective. 17 Elijah was a human being like us, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. 18 Then he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain and the earth yielded its harvest.” – James 5

For christians who claim that only the “apostles” could do miracles.

18 Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. 19 Again, truly I tell you, if two of you agree on earth about anything you ask, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them.” Matthew 18

For christians who claim that its up to their god to do what it wants, it doesn’t answer prayers like this.

22 He said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat, or about your body, what you will wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. 24 Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! 25 And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life?[d] 26 If then you are not able to do so small a thing as that, why do you worry about the rest? 27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin;[e] yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. 28 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! 29 And do not keep striving for what you are to eat and what you are to drink, and do not keep worrying. 30 For it is the nations of the world that strive after all these things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 Instead, strive for his[f] kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.

32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” – Luke 12

For christians who don’t like to be reminded that their god will supposedly take care of them and they should give up all they have.

All in all, evidence that Christianity/the bible is nonsense or that every single self-proclaimed Christian isn’t one or that Christians refuse to heal people when they can.

Quite a choice there.

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – My chat with Ray Comfort transcripted

After some personal uncomfortableness on my part, listening to my own voice, I have transcripted my chat with Ray Comfort that was recorded by Ray and a copy given to me for my use.

 

Here is the transcript, since I personally really hate to listen to talking heads.  I read much faster than that, and a transcript is my favorite way to see what people say.  I didn’t put much punctuation to keep the feel of the chat, but I think it should be pretty easy to read.   I started with the autotranscript function on YouTube, and it was better than I thought it would be.  But a couple of times, it had issues with Ray’s accent, and evidently mine too 🙂 although I’ve read somewhere that central PA is about as accentless as it gets for an American.

There are some interesting bit that I wanted to comment on since there were some questions unanswered, and some topics we never got back to.

Here’s the bit about creationism (and the start of the discussion about morality):

V: No, well some of that did. I mean after I read it because it’s not very often that the pastors I grew up with would mention anything except for the pretty plain vanilla fuzzy good Jesus parts of it. basically I knew enough science to know that there was no such thing as a 28,000 foot deep flood and you know went on through that then I know after I read the Bible I saw where this God killed David’s son to punish David but you know didn’t care about the child and oh you know the you know the usual stuff that you’ll hear from various you know non-christians

R: so you’re saying that the flood, the noahic flood which was said to cover the whole earth wouldn’t have covered Mount Everest with 29,000 feet do you realize there was no such things as mountains in those days, they hadn’t pushed up

V: there’s no evidence that mountains are that young and there’s you know to try claim that there was no mountains requires quite a energetic geology that would essentially release so much energy that would broil pretty much everyone on earth

R: yeah well that’s kind of what happened in the beginning the mountains pushed up like volcanoes do anyway…

V: those aren’t volcanoes

R; no they’re not but they are made of stone or rock I guess… I don’t know we’re talking about things I don’t know much about well um do you want to use that name Vel or do you want to use your real first name

It’s notable that a creationist admits not to know much about the earth.  As I’ve written before, willful ignorance is behind most creationist claims.  Creationists, be they Christians, Muslims, etc, all need to either ignore reality or intentionally lie about it.  This causes them problems because their claims about creationism are contradictory, since they don’t even start out at the same place.  We have contradictory claims about how creation happened by theists, and we have many different claims about how the Noahic flood “really” happened; all dependent on an ignorance of basic science.  The folks over at Talk Origins have a good article on the failures of creationists with the bible flood.

After this we get into the morality discussion starting with my question to Ray about his god killing David’s son.  Here’s a bit about that:

“R: yes yeah he killed David son okay did God actually kill, is it David son? or yeah David son when he committed adultery with Bathsheba it didn’t bless him with the child he said the child’s gonna die there are repercussions to his actions but he lets solomon live which is wonderful (?)

V: would you be happy if someone killed one of your children and let the other one lives

R: no of course not I love all my kids

V: then why would you accept that from your God

R: oh because he’s the giver of life he’s a giver and the taker of life and he’s the one that blesses with health and and in life itself and a peace if he deems fit to take a loved one what can I do about it I just trust him I trust his integrity so let’s go back to the issue David had a son died and God took him and God says your child’s gonna die did they actually happen

V: did resurrection actually happen

R: no did David have a son that god killed

V: no no I did if that didn’t happen why should I think that the resurrection happened

R: oh no not talking about the resurrection what I’m trying to get you to say is that did God kill the son of David

V: yes that’s what the Bible says

R: yeah but it didn’t happen did it cuz you’re an atheist so you say it didn’t happen because God doesn’t exist so why are you upset about something it didn’t happen it’s like being upset about the fairy godmother turning Cinderella’s coach back into a pumpkin.”

V: (laughter) well let me ask you if let’s just say that it did happen

R: okay

V: and you said that you would have absolutely no problem with a god doing something you would be unhappy with the human doing correct

R: oh yeah I’d be I wouldn’t be the happiest man on earth of one of my children died but I know that God is the giver and the taker of life he created every bone every every drop of blood and my children he gave me the gift of children and if he deem fit that one of my children dies I can’t do anything about it but I can trust him I can trust him in it and say Lord you know what you’re doing you allowed this for some reason it may not be a perfect will but it should permissive will you’re permitted it and in that I rejoice I trust you because that’s what faith is about it’s trusting when often often things aren’t right

V: so you believe you have an objective morality from your religion correct

R: yeah absolutely

V: so if if it’s not moral for a human to do something why is it moral for your God to do it?”

If I were Ray’s kids, I’d be more than a little disturbed by this.  I’d do anything to save my kids or anyone’s kids and that includes standing against anything, god or not, that would try to kill them.  Heck, I’d do that for my cats.  Here, it seems that Ray’s best answer is that I shouldn’t care about some kid since it was long ago.  My morals don’t work like that.  Injustice and unfairness are forever.  He goes on to claim that since everyone is going to die, it isn’t a problem and that I should only be considered with my salvation.

We went back to creationism for a bit, and Ray deflected my request for evidence about which creationism is right.

“V: Christians are all they all have the one real truth but I what need to see is evidence that that is actually the case

R: well that’s it’s provable um now let me ask what’s that

V: how is it provable

R: we’ll come up to that in a few minutes

V: Laughter.”

And of course we didn’t.   That was fine with me since I knew at some point he would have to intentionally change the subject from something he didn’t like where it was going.

We discussed the Big Bang Theory a bit and unsurprisingly he intentionally misrepresented it.  That also wasn’t a fruitful path for him (get it? Fruit?).  So we ended up with the questions that Ray loves and are on more than few of his videos e.g. “Do you think you are a good person? Have you ever lied?”  Have you ever stolen anything? etc.

R: how do you think you’re a good think you’re a good person

V: I’ve heard you do this before yes I do think I’m a good person and I do not use your Bible or your interpretation to define what good is.

R: that’s what we often do that’s what I did before I was a Christian that’s what Adolf Hitler did I no doubt if I talk to Hitler he would say he was a good person because he had his own moral standard he cleaned up Germany got rid of brothels more than full employment got rid of the scum of the earth clean the German race and …

V: know that a lot of Christians think that he did a very good job you can see that on the news with the various Trumpies thinking having no problem with Nazism at all

R: you know what if I were you I wouldn’t cover the whole church with one blanket because Jesus spoke of true and false conversions he spoke of hypocrites he spoke he spoke of fake Christians and they’re the ones that often speak the loudest so don’t sweep with such a broad broom there are genuine Christians that believe the Bible love their enemies that do good they’re kind to other people they’re not nasty and if you find someone who is professing Christian and they they lack love you can say to yourself I don’t believe that person’s a genuine Christian, they are a Jew. “

Now, when he said this initially it caught me by surprise. The auto transcript picked it up as “ they are junius”. I had to rewind this several times and listen because I didn’t want to believe it but this does seem to be what he said.

We ended up at the questions about lies and stealing, oh and taking god’s name in vain later:

“R: let’s get back the question let’s get back to the question because we’re going down a rabbit hole um if you think you’re a good person how do you measure up to those Commandments

V: I don’t care about your Commandments

R: But how do you measure up to them

V: I don’t need to measure up to them

R: well let me ask you let me let me put you on the stand and see how you do how many lies do you think you’ve told in your life

V: I’ve told some and some were for a good reason just like the folks who did Anne Frank were lying to the Nazis”

This was again not working for Ray, and he had to claim I hate his god because I use his god’s name as a cuss word.  There was more about how I have to be hating his bogeyman.  There is more about morals, and I had a good time pointing out just how evil his god is.   That got me told that I was “misinterpreting” the bible, but no explanation on how this was the case.

Then Ray was revved up and his words got faster and faster as he tried to preach at me.  That preaching was interspersed with my laughter and refutations.  His attempts at sowing fear didn’t work and that did appear to confuse him, leading to more repetition and appeals to how much my parents love me.

After trying to tell me, a former Presbyterian/calvinist, that I didn’t understand predestination “correctly”, we ended up with Ray trying to tell me that this god of his was finally answering my prayers said 40 years ago.   That his god is timeless, yada, yada. Which again doesn’t match up with what the bible actually says.

“R: okay let me answer that God sometimes takes his time a day of the Lord is a thousand years to us and God is answering that prayer today and I’m trying to help you to restore your faith so you thank God that he chooses the foolishness of preaching to save those that believe. he speaks through donkeys he’s speaking through me today and telling you that he has no pleasure in your death and he’s answering your prayer and he wants to restore your faith. Okay”

And yes, I was very very hard pressed not to use the obvious joke here. 🙂

This whole thing had a great ending when Ray sent me a signed copy of his book “Banana Man”, and it had two Subway gift cards in it.  I guess that’s what happened to the other $7000 went.  You can see the saga of the subway cards here.

What the Boss Likes – some improvements to what the PA Department of Health says about masks

The PA Department of Health has some info on masks. They have a basic bit of instruction on masks and then they refer people to the NYT instructions. Both, from my opinion as someone who has worn PPE and who sews, are lacking. Let me tell you what I think should be done.

This is what the PADOH says:

“How to Make a Homemade Mask out of Fabric or Cloth:

Below are instructions on how to make a mask at home.
Materials needed: • Fabric (100% cotton is most effective) • Fabric Ties • Scissors • Sewing machine or a needle and thread Instructions:
• Measure and cut two pieces of fabric in a rectangle pattern to fit snugly around the face (size 12 inches by 6 inches is standard for adults)
• Tightly sew both layers together on all edges
• Cut fabric ties to fit around the ears
• Sew the ties to the insides of the mask on the smaller edge, repeat on both sides
• Resew the sides to ensure a tight seal between both pieces of fabric and the earpiece

The above is going to make a pretty loose mask with no shaping to the face. The size of the NYT mask below is much better at 9.5” x 6.5”. It really needs the pleats in to fit closely to the lower face and offer some protection. The ties should be about 18” long to be tied around the head, one up high around the crown, and the other around the base of the skull. Here’s basically what you want to go for.

Mask Diagram
Mask Diagram – my changes on the NYT version.

 

Sew the ties at the corners of the rectangle. Trying to sew them parallel to the rectangle, as shown in the NYT version linked below, will just drive you nuts because it is very hard not to catch the tie in the seam. You can also use elastic but it can be problematic as the NYT article indicates.

Fold the pleats so they look like a “Z” when you would look at the short edge edge-on.   Basically, bring the lower pleat line up behind and the top line down on top in reference to the top of the mask.

Tutorials/Resources: • https://www.nytimes.com/article/how-to-make-face-mask-coronavirus.html

Now, for the NYT version, it says you can use a tea towel. That will be damn near impossible to do unless you have a heavy-duty sewing machine (mine can go through leather and denim/canvas) or a heavy duty hand sewing needle (the little ones in a sewing kit just won’t cut it), since you’ll end up going through at least 4 layers of fabric for the pleats. I recommend you use a dress shirt or a pillowcase/sheet to get a tight but light weave.

Sewing the ties will also not be easy. If you are going to use the method in the NYT version, do it by hand because a sewing machine will likely eat the narrow strip. If you want to use a sewing machine, use a larger piece of fabric and sew the tubes by folding over the edge into the main body of the fabric, run a seam, cut off the resultant “tube” and do it again. Then you can pull the tubes inside out as if you were putting a cord back in a pair of drawstring sweats.

I recommend either knotting the free ends or sewing them closed. Mine have been washed with no problems. If you can raid grandma’s sewing kit and find some bias tape, ribbon (warning, ribbon can slip), etc it can make the ties go faster.

All in all, I personally prefer the fitted mask as you saw on my last blog post. But the pleated mask will work too. I’ve made quite a few now for friends. I did wear one for getting groceries and yep, they just aren’t fun to wear. Especially for us with allergies. But they are important.

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – just in case you weren’t completely sure that conservative Christians were inhumane

Shilled by Ken Ham of the failed Ark museum and the Creation museum, we have this prize.  If you don’t want to click, here’s a screen capture of their vileness.  It wouldn’t surprise me if they take this down to try to hide what they really think.

“Put together a medical mission team in your church for a local response (kind of like Samaritan’s Purse, but a local effort). The beauty of such a team is that infectious disease outbreaks happen regularly. Having something in place will mobilize the church moving forward.

Purchase as many personal hygiene products that are currently in high demand. We need to quit making memes about the shortages of toilet paper and hand sanitizer worldwide and begin to realize that people perceive these items as a need. Churches should stock up on these supplies for distribution to their local communities. Ideas for this include taking supplies to your community or putting together fliers indicating that your church is distributing free personal hygiene products. And if people quit overbuying these supplies, why wouldn’t the church not use the same items for its members during our weekly services? It just makes sense to promote good personal hygiene because it is ultimately derived from a biblical worldview.

Have someone creative and biblical write a tract for distribution to each person receiving the personal hygiene products. What a travesty to meet people’s physical needs and neglect to tell them about their most important spiritual need: a relationship with the Creator Redeemer Jesus Christ. Here’s an idea of something you can include to answer hard questions in light of sickness and death.”

So, we have Christians who think it’s great that there is a pandemic, and who want to horde supplies, but supplies that no one needs for the coronavirus.  And then only give them out if they can also proselytize to the person who think they need toilet paper.

This underlines that conservative Christians do only help people for their own benefit, e.g. their desperate need for external validation.  They have no problem in using fear and misery to make people agree with them.

Terrorism is an evil thing.