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Everything posted by JohnsonJones

  1. I recognize that episode! Okay, a joke that my wife absolutely hates. My wife is a natural blonde (meaning it is her natural hair color, not something out of a bottle). I discovered this joke several years ago and she HATES it when I tell it to her. How do you kill a blonde? You put a scratch and sniff sticker at the bottom of a swimming pool. So, she really hated me telling this as a joke, but it got worse one day. Lo and behold my kid had put a scratch and sniff sticker at the bottom of the bath tub. My wife decided to get it off of there when the tub was still full of water. I guess she must have fell halfway in because the next I knew there was screaming and shouting. I went there and she was all upset and infuriated, hair wet and dripping and the sticker in hand. "That kid (name not said here) just tried to kill me with this stunt!" she exclaimed. I smiled as I snarkily said the joke again. That day my knowledge was corrected. I don't know about whether you can kill a blonde in that fashion, but I know that if you put a scratch and sniff sticker at the bottom of a tub it is a sure fire way to see STARS! Now, everytime I tell the joke I am reminded of that day as suddenly, I see Stars all over again! PS: The above is just a joke, my wife didn't actually have to deal with that, none of my children of them did put a grape scratch and sniff at the bottom of the tub but it was ME who cleaned that one off, and my wife doesn't hit me. I do like it if she hits ON me though.
  2. Are you talking about the flight tracker, the one that takes publicly available information and republished it. All it did was look at the airport flight logs of departing and arriving aircraft and tallied it to match Elon Musk's tail. It shortened a task from 2 minutes to a few seconds. The reporters who were reporting on his banning the flight tracker and what happened next weren't even reporting on this information, just the story itself. Some of them gave a link to where the tracker was and where it is now, but they were just reporting the news. They did not state the location of Musk or his aircraft from what seems to be being reported. If you know his plane registry you can probably find where his tail is this exact moment. This is public information so that we don't have plane crashes in the sky or if under 18,000ft that if a plane goes down we know the general vicinity to go looking for it. If he hates this information being out there he would be wise to do what the world's richest man did (or who has it now, presently) which was to simply sell his plane and rent planes instead. This means he has no registration or tail numbers that can be connected to him and thus makes following his movements all that much harder if someone wanted to do so. If Musk really considers this "Doxxing" his next step should be to ban the Federal government and the FAA from his site (saying they have accounts there) because they are the ones who are actually putting out this information for the public to see. Most Flight plans, even from Military aircraft while flying in the U.S. in non-military (MOA's, etc) airspace , are not secret or private information. This is to ensure safety of the skies to the maximum amount they can.
  3. In reflection of the recent post I had a thought (and it is only that, a thought) regarding how the 7 heavens of Judaic literature could reflect on our own eschatology. 1st Heaven - This world, this earth. This mortality. This is where Adam and Eve dwelt. 2nd Heaven - The Spirit World. It is said this is where those tossed out of heaven dwell as well. It is home to those both good and evil who are spirits. 3rd Heaven - The Telestial world. This is where the Garden of Eden and the Tree of Life supposedly are. If it is a Telestial but perfected world I could see it as a Garden or as the Garden of Eden for those who have a Telestial Glory. 4th Heaven - This contains the heavenly Jerusalem and temple and Altar. This is where the Lord can come to visit and those in the Celestial Kingdom come and visit and teach. It is ruled by the Archangel Michael. I could see this as the Terrestrial World. 5th Heaven - 3rd Degree of the Celestial Kingdom. They are not quite full enough to be in the 6th heaven. 6th Heaven - 2nd degree of the Celestial Kingdom. Those who serve those in the 7th Heaven. 7th Heaven - This is where God dwells. This is where his throne is located. This iis the abode of all unborn human souls. I'd say this is also equivalent of the Highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom. Just some thoughts I had while reading the thread regarding some connections that could be had between our own religious beliefs and some of the more mystical beliefs found elsewhere.
  4. I think the world today has lost a sense of responsibility. Today a group of people want to make it all about lust and romance. They don't put any factor about responsibility into it. If you marry someone and have a family, it does not matter at that point if the romance has gone out of your life for that time. You are responsible for your family. As a father you are responsible for your children. You are responsible for trying to do all you can to help them and your family if you are a Father. If you are a mother you are responsible that they know they have a loving mother who supports them. It is more than just about what YOU want, it is about taking care of everyone in the family. I fee this is forgotten today. A LOT of it is about the individual and what THEY want rather than what is good for everyone else. It is about selfish desire rather than expressing the love for others. It is about what you can get rather than serving and helping those around you. Those fathers that abandon their families because of worldly lusts (or mothers who do the same) are individuals who make me sad. It is also about commitment. I love my wife tremendously, but even if I did not I would still be committed to her. I made that commitment many decades ago and that is an important factor in marriage. You commit to putting your spouse above all else. Even if you are gay and decide to get married in a heterosexual marriage, that should not be something you toss away. You should remain committed to the ideals of the gospel and to living a life that is committed to something more than yourself. If you choose that path, you should stick to your decision rather than deciding years later that you no longer want to honor your commitments. It harms those you committed to, it harms those you brought into the world, and to me it is a dishonorable way to act. If you don't want that responsibility and commitment and are a homosexual, it is better to NOT trod that path than to try it out or even start down it. IMO.
  5. I've heard of a platform recently called Mastodon (I think that is what it is called) which is a twitter competitor which people are going to.
  6. I would change that to Voters need to register with the proper identification papers EVERY election. I'm not a big buyer into the idea that there was election fraud, but I DO think we could have more secure and more equal elections if we implemented some of these types of changes.
  7. I actually agree with this, WITH one addendum. Influencing the vote is not just being done from one side, but both sides. If we want people to vote at the Polls the Republicans need to stop closing polling locations and make sure to open MORE polling locations and make it easier for people to actually get to the polls. Leave the Polls open longer (yes, it will mean we won't get our instant results by the end of the night, but if we can help people vote, leave the polls open till 9PM rather than closing at 7PM as they do at some places...etc). I am all for having people vote in person at the polls, but they need to be able to HAVE the polls to get there and vote. They need polls available. I have seen an awful lot of Republican actions trying to shut down polls or close them entirely in areas where they are not expected to have the majority. It doesn't matter if you expect to win or lose an area, everyone needs to have equal access to the polls if we want them to use polls as the locations where they vote rather than trying to get other ways of voting. Other than that, I am all for requiring someone to have a government issued picture ID to vote (it's actually normally free for the ID, sure, you may have to pay if you want a drivers license, but the cost for an ID is either low cost or free in most of the United States) and having them vote in person at the polls. I think it would be good for voting security. I think that the polls need to be available though.
  8. I think it is more of influencing rather than simply just spying. From what i understand, TikTok in China for youth and children focuses on upping the amount of educational videos shown. The algorithms for the US are the opposite. I suspect China has a HUGE presence on social media in general (Tik Tok, reddit, etc) to try to disrupt the United States and the Western World. If they can make people unhappy enough with their governments and Democracy they can destabalize the free world to the point where they may be able to make inroads of their own. I see an awful lot of sentiment from youth who spend an inordinate amount of time on these social media platforms (instagram, Tik Tok, reddit, Imgur, etc) that indicate there is a much higher number of far left commentary, far more atheists or those who claim atheism and anti-religion, and who disparage democratic institutions on these platforms than what I see in everyday society or even in polls of what Americans actually think, believe, and feel. If they are spying on you it is probably connected to an algorithm that tries to figure how to play content that best makes you upset and disgruntled with the society around you and the emphasize those feelings so that you get angry at society around you. It can work for both sides, both right and left politically speaking. I think that may also be part of why we see such extremist views arising on the both the left and the right over the past decade as China has gotten more involved with buying up or being involved with social media in the background. They are the serpent in the grass and we aren't paying attention.
  9. Yes, I had just noticed that Musk is all for suppression of the press. It IS his company though, and I do support one able to do whatever they want with their property. He paid enough for it. What I do not understand is how all these people who really dislike what he is doing and what is occurring on twitter, why they remain on twitter. Stop using twitter and let Musk pay for those losses. As it is, they are supporting him simply by using his platform. If he can survive without their support (I don't think he could, but you never know. I think it would fail if they all left and all he had remaining were his sycophants, but I'm no financial guru). For those who love Musk, let them remain on his platform and let him do whatever he wants (unless or until it actually harms someone else). It is ironic how he keeps trumpeting about this thing called free speech and then tries to do everything but allow it on his platform. (note: I still feel he should be allowed to do it, but I find his talk about it and his actions rather opposite of each other). If I recall, trying to negate a free press was one of the reasons why the Founders of the Constitution, and especially those who were for the Bill of Rights, wanted to have something protecting free speech and the freedom of the press.
  10. That's not tithing that a Missionary is paying. The MEMBER who was NOT a missionary was paying on their increase. They chose to put some (or all of it in some cases) of it or all of it into savings. When they go on their mission they then follow a modified form of the Law of Consecration. Someone (it's not necessarily always the missionary, in fact, there are many times someone else is actually helping to pay for the mission. It is good that your sons paid for their missions, but this is not so in every case) pays the money for the missionary fund. It is then distributed and utilized as per the NEEDS (or what is seen as sufficient to cover their needs) of those missionaries. They are NOT receiving THEIR money back. They are not getting the money they paid. That money is gone. Any money given for the missionary is the church's money. The missionary is then receiving funds to help them pay for the necessities in life as needed. That money is actually the LORD's money. Not theirs. The LORD's money. This is why they don't pay tithing. There is no need to pay tithing on the Lord's money. In contrast to this. A University professor at BYU is paid from the Church coffers. This is initially the Lord's money, but is now given to the University professor as their increase. That professor has also paid tithing and paid into the church coffers (perhaps the same coffers their paycheck comes from!). However, this is no longer the Lord's money they have gotten. It is their private funds and money. Thus, they should pay tithing on it as per the Commandment. Now, if the missionary has money that is not the LORD's money they should pay tithing on it. This would be money their parents send them if the parents do that, or money that the missionary may be earning from worldly sources. However, it is a mistake to think that the money the missionary is getting to help pay for their needs on their mission is actually the money that the missionary paid the church. It is not. It USED to be that the missionaries funded their own missions. Today, it is not. IN fact, in many instances the missionary is getting MORE from the Lord than anything they paid (housing and other expenses including the monthly allowance are supplemented by the Church in many areas today from other funds outside and beyond the basic money paid by the missionaries in the field). For example, just living in SLC or the Provo areas today have an average Rent of 900 dollars for a one bedroom apartment (though some places say it runs more towards $1500 in SLC). That does not include the car payment if they have a vehicle, or car insurance. With that you can peg on another 200 to 300 dollars. You add in another 135 dollars for each missionary and you have something like 1400 to 1500 dollars per missionary. Missionaries do not pay that much into the missionary fund each month. SLC and Provo areas are actually cheaper than many other metropolitan areas in the US or Europe. The view isn't that missionaries are being paid by the Church for their service...if they were they would also have to pay taxes. I stated above that the understanding today is that they are using the Lord's funds to pay for their needs. This is supposed to be sacred money that they are using to help them meet the necessities of life. Now, on something not really spoken outloud, but more of a personal idea on the matter... It is a personal thought that I have that the missionary fund today doesn't cover the entirety of the missionary costs of the Church, that just like the Universities and CES system of the church, the mission program is heavily supplemented by other funds and investments from the Church itself today. This is to help alleviate the difficulty of saving enough for a mission. The money given to the Church to help pay for a mission is to help the missionary understand and have enough commitment to it to sacrifice time and effort in order to prepare themselves to serve even before they have gone on a mission, and to help the family also in a similar manner if the family are the ones helping pay these costs.
  11. I have. I also have studied a lot of history. However, I KNOW the conservatives of today would NOT like to understand it in the way it was practiced. It goes against their very essence of political worship. It doesn't take a rocket scientist nor a genius to understand. The BIG difference between communism as practiced in the USSR and China is at the very core of why the Law of Consecration and the United Order are different. It isn't about whether you have private ownership or property, as that is actually just about the same in both Communism and what is labeled as Religious Communism (with the early LDS groups as a primary example in some educational venues). It isn't whether or not people are supposed to only be given what they need and not necessarily what they want. It isn't that both are dramatically the opposite of capitalism. What it IS is that one is directed by men and as such...flawed. The other is directed by God, and thus just. In both systems, private ownership really doesn't exist. The only owner is the top dog. In Communism that is the government, but in reality whoever it is directing that government (hence corrupted men in general). In the Gospel, it is only God. Those who would steal from God get the fate that we see Peter give out to those who decided that the "private property' was theirs to keep. However, people with money never want to see a true society where there are no rich or poor among them. It is all about the money and possessions they have. They NEED to feel they OWN something. The Law of Consecration is merely a mirror to that of our mortal lives. AS we sin, we have already lost ourselves. We cannot save ourselves as we now belong to the adversary. We have divorced ourselves from the Lord. HOWEVER...the LORD HAS PAID THE PRICE. If we are to be saved, the only way to be saved is to give ourselves to him and love him with all our heart, might, mind and soul. We must hold nothing back and give everything to him, for whoever is willing to lose all they have for his sake will gain eternal life. The Lord never told the Rich man...go and sell all you have and then I'll give you a small part again in this life so that you have some private property. That wasn't the deal. It still isn't. The deal was different. It was give all you have and come follow me. The Rich man couldn't abide by the terms. The Law of Consecration are those terms. If we think that we are going to retain private property and base our thoughts and belief on that, we have already missed the point of the Law of Consecration. It is NOT just a physical state of being. It deals with the very essence of Salvation and what we should be willing to do to attain it. We can be called as stewards over the Lords church and the Lord's property, but when we start thinking that the Lord's property will be ours and that it is then OUR title and OUR property, we've missed the point, as well as what actually has happened in history and how it actually was performed. The big thing about accepting the Law of Consecration is that you give without the expectation of ANYTHING in return except for your love of Jesus Christ. Tithing is a smaller version of this. You don't pay tithing because you will get something in return, though many feel you can receive is NOT the reason you pay tithing. If you pay tithing so that you are going to get something back like that, it sort of misses the point. The reason you pay tithing is it is a commandment. You obey the commandment because you love the Lord. The same applies to the Law of Consecration. You are not supposed to do it because you think that it operates with you getting some private property that you will get to keep, even if you apostasize and leave the church (Several of those who were excommunicated would have LOVED to keep the property 'deeded' to them in the manner you are describing, unfortunately for them it didn't work that way, or perhaps we should say...fortunately) or you have no matter what. That property is given to the LORD (in theory, it was already his, you are just recognizing it formally) and is HIS. You give the property because you wish to follow him out of love for him and a desire to devote yourself fully to him. You do it with no expectation of returns, because you love the Lord and desire to follow him in a way the Rich young man could not. However, I know this is something that most members in the United States would not agree with today. 100 years ago they probably would have, and 80 years ago that belief of theirs changed the entire landscape of America as they inspired a United States President and his government to create what many members today consider a socialistic program. It is possibly something that we will not agree upon here. This is something has actually changed in my lifetime. When I first joined the church what I have said was NOT unpopular nor was it unknown. Today...a much different view and interpretation of the very same scriptures are being tossed around. Th
  12. [For those who TLDR... I have a much shorter TLDR at the bottom]. It's an interesting verse. From my readings in Church History that's how it worked, but NOT how many here think it worked. The Church in many instances retained title. Members were given a paper based upon their worthiness. As LONG AS THEY REMAINED FAITHFUL the property was theirs for stewardship and an inheritance. It could and WAS taken away when members apostatized. Exceptions were given for wives and children left behind or widows. One is a title for legal property. The other is a document given by the Church that could spell out when and how that individual would be allowed to use or keep the property. A man would give his property to the church and it became the church's. The Church then retained that property, but there would be items that the family would be able to retain (for example, food, clothing, etc). Hard Property normally was kept by the church, especially in certain areas. This was an even harder rule under Brigham Young. His ideal was Orderville in which property (such as land) was all deeded to the community and none held by the individual, though personal property such as personal effect WERE deeded to individuals. If we look at how the church runs the United Order, or it's parallels today, we can see how the Law of Consecration probably would be run. There are two methods or groups in this. The first is not the Law of Consecration, but a much lesser law, that of tithing. Today, much of the tithing funds come from North America, with Europe and Australia normally also having wards give tithing funds in excess of what they receive. In return, the Ward will get a lot less (it is not unusual for a Ward to be giving tens of thousands of dollars a month, sometimes over a hundred thousand in some wards. wards that donate this much tithing do not get anywhere close to this much back as their budgets). The funds they get back ARE theirs to do with as they want. This is their stewardship. The tithing funds are used to help all of the church, not just the richer wards of North America. In a like manner we have those under the auspices of the Church (the one most can relate to are Missionaries) who live under a modified law of Consecration and United Order type of support. Missionaries are allocated funds each month in regards to how much it is expected they can live off of and survive. They are given enough for their needs. They are also given a place to live and sometimes a vehicle. They are supposed to be good stewards of this property. Missionaries VERY RARELY are given the title or deed to the vehicle or property. They normally do not even have a deed for the furniture. They ARE allowed to keep what they purchase with the money (though in some missions it is requested that if the missionary has excess money at the mission, that the missionary also returns that money). IF you are deeded property with a title, as per the scripture, you may keep that property. In general though, the title was the church's and thus if you became unworthy or separated from the Church, the church did NOT lose that money or property. [SIDETRACK of Mine] This was even a thorn in Brigham Young's side (who, if we listened to could have had some interesting impacts on the dynamics of Utah today) who said to the effect that property (land) should NEVER leave the church or the church's membership. That if they sold the land to those who were not part of the church, or it was given or taken by those who were not part of the church, great sin and apostasy would afflict the saints at later times. If we visit Utah today it has many of the same sins found in the rest of the US in abundance there as well. I would say Brigham Young was prophesying correctly what would happen. Of course, a lot of the economic bounty that has come from non-members being a part of the Utah economy would not be possible if the Saints had followed what Young had said as well...interesting to wonder what Utah would be like in that instance. [ END OF SIDETRACK] Anyways, it didn't work as people in the thread seem to want to interpret it in how it worked. Yes, people got deeds, but it was NOT necessarily deeds to titles and such. Sometimes they did, many did not. The problem comes in is the first part which is where one is commanded to consecrate their property to the Church. This would be ALL their property...not just some. This property is NOW the Church's, and as per the prior verses, the property thus consecrated REMAINS with the Church. There were some that felt that the property they were given stewardship over should remain theirs and argued it WAS theirs after this. When they were told that some of the land they had would then go to other Saints that were arriving, bitter feelings arose (a great deal of bitter feelings, especially from those who tended to have a lot more of that land they tended to before others arrived). Section 42 Addresses this rather clearly, and as it is written precedent prior to the next sections, it would be the one that is read first... as it says.. The problem arises if he has title from the government for this land (rather than the church having the title) instead of it being granted to him to merely be a steward at the whims of the church the next verse becomes unenforceable under Church law. The church had to be able to force them to give up the extra land, which, without legal title, they would not be able to matter how righteous or unrighteous that individual was. You see this same wording in Section 51. This specifies that yes, it is his right an inheritance, UNTIL he transgresses. What then does he get to keep? His appointed portion, of which he has lost his stewardship if he is not worthy of it...OR something else. Well, that's where it gets tricky and depends on who is interpreting it. Which comes to the question, what part was consecrated...Why ALL of it. It was ALL given to the Church at least land and such. was not necessarily all given, neither was money or profit if it was just sufficient. Excess profit and food were supposed to be donated, but they all were supposed to have sufficient for their needs. Under Brigham in many instances, such apostates would be tossed off the land and out of the community. If they refused, well, normally bad things followed those who refused this. Section 83 makes allowances though and in theory they were supposed to be allowed to remain on the lands "of their inheritance" as it were. If you were a man, this normally did not happen. If you were a widow or a single mother, it COULD HAPPEN. A good way to see it in action today would be to look at the FLDS branches of the church. If someone apostatizes, if they have enough power in the church they may be able to retain ownership of the property they supposedly have stewardship over. Normally though, the CHURCH (FLDS or other fundamentalist groups in this instance, not the true church) will retain control over that property and the apostate kicked off and out. They probably don't live the true law of consecration, but they probably have a better handle on how it works than many of the Saints today in our church. It is probably a lot closer to how it would work if enacted today then what many imagine it would work like. The TLDR Thus, there WOULD be some who actually have deeds which specify you have property, but most of the members would not have these titles. They MIGHT have documents which bless them with stewardship over property to be theirs as an inheritance (as long as they are faithful, similar to other promises one may make where they are given blessings as long as they are faithful), but if they leave the church in apostasy...that paper will be of little effect against the power of the Church and the actual title that they would hold in general. The way it actually worked in the past, the way we see the lesser law of tithing and the modified version of it today (missionaries, tithing), as well as the way we see groups which branched off from the church but still try to practice it to a degree, show that in practice it works a LOT differently than what many think it would. PS: I should add, that if a Missionary saves enough money to BUY A HOUSE OR LAND than they would indeed be able to keep that house if they purchased it with their missionary allowance (highly doubtful they would ever have that much). In that light, YES, they could keep that property. Ideally, under the law of consecration though, if someone was saving that much money they would be donating it back to the Bishop rather than buying property as it would be obvious they were receiving far beyond what they needed to suffice for their own needs. The same principles apply to the Law of Consecration and the United theory. (Post Note: I find that the idea of people having property like they do today is more from those who desire to retain the property they have and place value on it. You talk to those who are in poverty in South America or Africa and their take on the matter is far different...interestingly enough. Those in the States tend to think of it more of a matter of keeping what is theirs and that they will be able to keep and control their property like they do today, while those from poorer nations seem to have more of an idea of a group sharing of things and everyone being more equal in most ways...just some interesting differences I've seen and read).
  13. I believe in theory there are a few church positions that are exempt and that's what it is for. Apostles and the first Quorum of the Seventy I think are actually exempt from having to tithe on their allowances and such. The same would apply to Mission President reimbursement and such. For those who that is their only means, they would in theory be exempt. The same would also apply to Missionaries and their allowances I think. There is no need to actually ask a Missionary if they are a full tithe payer (I would assume, I have never been a Mission President myself, but I don't think that would probably come up in the temple recommend interviews with them...though I could be highly mistaken).
  14. That's not how it worked in New Testament times. That's not how it worked under Joseph Smith's Presidency. That's not how Brigham Young ran it. Why do you think the Church would do it differently than it ever did before. They NEVER ceded property to be a member's private property. That's not how it worked. If you left the church you did NOT get to keep that property. This was a factor of GREAT contention during Joseph Smith's time (and many of the apostates who left over this exact matter were some of the mob leaders who later martyred him). This was found out to be absolutely NOT true under Brigham Young, much to the regret of some who decided to leave the church. Whatever was the church's property REMAINED the Church's property. The only incident of question regarding this was pertaining to Brigham Young and what was his and what was the Church's property upon his death. You were given what you needed (food obviously was not returned, but property was NOT yours it was the church's property, you were simply the caretaker of it temporarily). This was many times FAR LESS than what people THOUGHT they needed. The best comparison is that it was one of the only successful run communal or communistic governments (even if religious) ever ran. I think if the church actually RAN it how it was run in Brigham Young's day, there would be a GREAT DEAL of apostasy from many very conservative Saints who think exactly as you do above. They would find out they do NOT OWN anything once given to the Church and are NOT GIVEN anything to OWN as their OWN property. They are given STEWARDSHIP of that property, but the titles and all else remain the property sole of the Prophet or the Church. To make matters worse, many well off and those in the middle class would probably feel as if they had their property stolen (much like some did during Joseph Smith's time. It wasn't as big a factor during Brigham Young's time as most didn't have much to begin with when they arrived in Utah or when they set up the settlements, so communal property owned and administered by the Church made a LOT MORE sense from a survival viewpoint) when they get a LOT LESS to be stewards over than they feel they deserve. What is given to the church is the church's...or the Lords. It is no longer ours and we should not expect to get it back as our property...because...if it is run anything like it was in the are not going to get it. At least it wasn't run as in Peter's time. Those who withheld something or didn't like it but remained members in the church in his time seem to have met untimely deaths. It could be FAR more strict than it was during Brigham Young's time. A similar item, or lesser law, is followed by us today. The Law of Tithing has the same principal. Whatever you give to the Church is the Church's property. They can do with it as they please. Do NOT expect to get it or anything back from the church itself. You do not pay tithing out of expectation of blessings or that you will have everything turn out excellent. You pay it because it is a commandment. The Lord will probably bless you, but that is NOT why you actually pay tithing. You pay it because it is a commandment. The Church OWNS that once you give it to them. The same applies to the Law of Consecration. Under the law of consecration, anyone who expects that they will have their own private property back will probably be greatly surprised unless they are among the very poor (and even then, it is not theirs, it is still the church's, they are given stewardship over it, but it is NOT their property). If we spread the property out from those in North America to those in South America, Africa, and some parts of Asia...a far greater amount will be given to those in other nations than left in the United States. It may turn out similar to how tithing funds are used today (a ward in North America may end up donating a million dollars in tithing funds a year...but they are probably only going to get a few thousand as a budget back...and that is for the Church expenditures normally...helping the needy comes from a different fund typically). Those in North America may only get a fraction of what they are expecting. They will probably get enough to get them by...but it's not going to be something they are used to most likely. Unless they remember that once something is given to the Lord it is no longer theirs, and are happy with whatever the Lord blesses with them back...there may be great anguish and grief if we ever were called to actually LIVE the Law of Consecration again. Under the Law we give all we have to the Church (and that isn't just monetary or physical property, it is also composed of time and effort). It is then that the Lord will grant us what he will, not what we think we need or demand.
  15. It is something people do in respect and recognition. A Bishop is given certain keys, and though they may not be the current authorized individual with the keys, they still have those keys (at least from my understanding). This means they are still a 'Bishop' in technicality, but not THE Bishop that is acting as the Bishop at that moment. If I was called again to a calling that I have the keys to, then (once again, if I understand it right) I will not need those keys given to me once again, I already have them. The ability to exercise them on the other hand would be given for that purpose as long as I was once again in that calling. Members call former Bishops of the Ward...Bishop. It is a sign of respect or recognition of the above. I find it is normally those who were members when the Bishop was their Bishop of their ward who call the former Ward Bishop...Bishop (now that's a mouthful...isn't it). New people who move in or are baptized who were not part of the ward when the Bishop was Bishop, most of the time will call the former Ward Bishop a Brother instead. Of course, there are also many that will call the former Ward Bishop whatever the Bishop prefers...including his first name if they are well acquainted with each other. Whether or not that is actually acceptable traditionally, I don't know, but it probably is a lot easier to call the guy Joe rather than Bishop if Joe really likes to be called by his first name. I find now days many will revert to calling the former Ward Bishop as a brother as well. I don't see anything wrong with that, but I may also be mistaken. I think being congenial and friendly to people is a good thing instead of trying to enforce the term or anything like I said...maybe the guy just likes his first name as well...
  16. I think Tesla's stock is going down over concerns about how much Musk's cross over with Tesla stock being leveraged in regards to his buying Twitter. A man that spends that much time on Twitter shows that he may not actually be acting in the capacity of a CEO all that much. For someone who claims they work hard he certainly seems to work less than I do and have more time to do things like "twitter" than I have. I have been wrong many times before but I think twitter may hit some severe financial difficulties in the next year or two from the way I hear they are heading. There are some of my students who said that he is trying to pick a fight with Apple recently (that can't be right...that seems...not wise considering how much of the US population owns an Iphone right now...) to try to bully them into paying to advertise with him again (he's lost a lot of the advertisers from what I hear). The sounds of it make it seem Twitter may not have a bright future. I could be wrong (and am open to admit I am wrong many times), but I am going to hazard a guess that things may not be that rosy for Twitter's future. If Tesla stock really is mixed into his leverage for the buyout of Twitter, Tesla may have some ramifications from that as well. We will see where everything stands in two or three years for Twitter and may be that they are on their way out at that point or at least in precarious positions financially.
  17. The problem we have is our definitions of slavery. Something that has bothered people for many years, especially in the past 50 is that slavery is NOT condemned in the Bible. The problem is HOW that slavery is conducted. The Bible includes BOTH forms in direct contrast to each other. The story of Joseph portrays the good and bad of slavery as well. Joseph was a slave in both good and bad conditions. In the portion where being a slave is good he is the second most powerful person in Egypt. He has more power and freedom than most that are not slaves. In this instance, being a slave is akin to being the representative of your master directly to the people. This type of slavery has been utilized in the past in various ways, sometimes good and other times bad. The Mamluks were a dominent force in North Africa and the Middle East but were slaves. They were the power that everyone feared. A bunch of slaves that were a military. Similarly, the Jannisaries were slaves to the Royal Ottomans. People would try to give their children into this slave military just so the children could have the power and privilege of it. These groups were brutal in their training, but they had far more power than many others...and were slaves. Slavery is used as an allegory in the Bible to each of us in some instances. This is seen directly by the descendants of Jacob. When the Children of Israel came to Egypt and submitted to Joseph, just like Joseph, they were slaves to Pharaoh. This was a path to great power for them and prestige. However, they were slaves and later were subjected to great evil as such. The new Pharaoh acted evilly and the slavery they practiced was wrong in many ways. Thus, they were under an evil master. They needed deliverance but in that needed to be freed by Pharaoh or another. Until the price for them was exacted (In Pharaoh's case he didn't wish to let them go until finally he lost his son, which is also a similitude to what the price to free us from our own slavery to sin is) they were not freed. They finally were freed and went on a journey (very long one) to the promised land (also allegorical to our own journeys in life). In a similar manner We each sell ourselves into slavery. When we sin we sell our souls. Just like a man could not free another master's slaves simply by stating it, we cannot be freed so easily from selling ourselves into slavery by sin. A slave must be bought from the other at the price demanded and become the slave of the one who bought them before they could be freed. In a like manner, we are bought by the Savior. It is only through him that we can be freed from the slavery we impose upon ourselves by our sins. HOWEVER...and this is something many do not think on as much, when we are bought we are then slaves to the savior. We are HIS bond-servants as one could put it. He will free the slaves, but he had to pay the price to buy them first. In this, he is ALSO the good master (as opposed to the bad master). Our modern morality equates slavery with evil. However, it is only certain types of slavery and HOW those who are the masters act towards their slaves that are really evil in regards to what the Bible considers wrong. Most of what we see in the South was the bad type of slavery. Historically though not all slavery was considered evil or wrong and in some cases was seen as the path to great power. This is NOT me condoning the slavery as we see in the Southern United States, but remarking that the idea that all slavery is wrong no matter what is a modern idea of our modern western society and based upon current relative morality rather than a Biblical morality. Part 2 - With that said, I agree that the Constitution incorporates many compromises and has far more flexibility which allows compromise and change over time. It is why it has stood so long thus far. There is a line of thought in Historical circles (as well as political science) that goes over the idea of virtue vs. self interest. (it's not the only line of thought in this area, but one which I think can pertain to this conversation). It has that the founders were well read and knew of the conflict between self interest and virtue. Virtue in this manner is one that seeks to help and further society and civilization with no thought of return to oneself. Self-Interest is one where one's only thought is how something will benefit them. In society there is both virtue and self-interest. Each must be addressed in order for a balanced government to operate. The constitution thus was written in relation to both issues, virtue and self-interest. This way a government composed of those who only were in it to benefit themselves but not for society as a whole could be balanced out with their self-interests interposing with each other to make a more balanced and fair government. In the same manner it also allows those who are virtuous to be involved and promote the welfare of society in the same government. This is wholly independent of religion and means that the ideals of the Constitution can still be flexible enough to continue operating when we have a nation composed of people from all types of faiths, morality, and walks of life represented within it's framework. We had many founders involved with the composition of the United States Constitution. They did not all share the same ideas or beliefs. It is the combination of their working together which brought the Constitution to life...not just the words or actions of one or two of those who were behind it's writing.
  18. They said the same thing about Abortion. I would support limited Abortion (not the free range it had become, but more of a medical doctor's provision to use as a tool as needed for the health of the mother...etc) far more than the Gay Marriage push and Transgender indoctrination on young children that we have today. I would have thought that the righteous in the nation would have fought far harder and quicker against that attack against our children than they have, instead they choose to go after abortion in it's totality. I believe in America and that it is a Republic built on freedom. It is a nation where no one religion is the law, and where religion and government are separated. Thus, one can have the beliefs they want without fear of persecution. Because of this... I support the idea that those who believe in a manner can act in that manner as long as it does not harm others. If one wants to practice polyandry and it does not hurt others in that relationship, I do not think they should be persecuted. I felt the same way towards those that wanted to have homosexual relationships. However, when they started pushing indoctrination into children's films and such (and just recently Disney just released a children's film with a main factor of it being a child/teen/young adult pursuing a Gay relationship from what I understand) that IS NOT OKAY by me. This is how you turn those who would support your freedoms to be those who are against allowing you to keep doing these things.
  19. I thought he only paid 44 Billion, not 55 Billion. My daughter says that one of the languages needed is Scala, and while there are those who know it, it is harder to find those who are really familiar with it. Firing those with the experience of the framework (or laying them off or them just quitting) means that the likelihood of them losing vital information to keep the framework going is extremely high. Of course, if they want a "twitter 2.0" which uses a completely different framework, then that something that could be done with an entirely different group of employees after firing the old ones. Of course, then it is banking on the name recognition and name brand rather than the product, and that's a very risky endeavor to go as it is literally something else under the same name. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. I'm not sure anyone knows what Musk is planning...Musk included at this point. PS: One other thing to add, burning it to the ground and replacing it with another program is even riskier according to her because it takes time to program something. It isn't just like snapping your fingers or putting together a model. It can take months (though more likely years) to get a successful program working for something as big as twitter is now. If done extremely quickly you'd still be looking at weeks down the road in which time they could lose most of the customer base if the original stops working.
  20. I have heard a rumor that was 88% of the Twitter Employees, including almost all of the software engineering department except for those with the H1B visas. I have also heard the rumor that Musk called a meeting trying to figure out if there were anyone left who could code at all and called an emergency meeting that people had to show up yesterday, then revised it because he found there were those who weren't able to make it (after he had told everyone the offices were closed until Monday) and started making revisions to his demand they all show up to the point that he hoped they would show up today or tomorrow if possible, and if not and had an excuse such as were not able to get to the office, they could meet otherwise via electronic means. From the same rumor, apparently security is still working, or some of them, as they were there to let at least one software engineer into the building who responded to Musks call for a meeting yesterday. With that the rumor is he's pretty crazy over there right now and those who can get out of it...are getting out of it as they see a ship sinking. The H1B's can't, but many of them are trying to find other jobs in the interim so that they don't have to worry (which could be hard considering Meta and Amazon just announced a lot of layoffs themselves). Even they want to get out of there, but can't without risking being kicked out of the nation and it's not worth them. The rumor is NONE of them think he knows what he is doing currently, it's a wild ride. I suppose if you consider that 88% of the employees as leftist crybabies leaving the playground as a good thing...that's good for your hopes. Not sure it's a wise idea for a corporation to shed that much of it's knowledge base and experience in such a short time, perhaps that's just me. Just rumors though. I don't know what will happen with Twitter (was never a user myself). It seems to me that it could be in trouble, but maybe Musk has some surefire way to turn it into a Billion dollar profit maker a year in the near future. I don't know how that would be if the rumors are true or even partially true at this point...but as I said, I've never been one to really follow twitter that closely so I'm not terribly familiar with the ins and outs of it. The rumors have made for an interesting item to read recently though.
  21. Most of that generation has passed on (due to old age). The ones that I know that are still alive today were children at the time. It was rather brutal on children in those places. All the ones I know in the United States are VERY PROUD to be United States Citizens today, and are very proud of the United States itself. They are pretty patriotic. Interestingly enough, most of them (not all of them) that I know from the United States personally are also Democrats. That probably is an interesting facet in regards to the make up of the Latter-day Saints in the U.S.
  22. I am torn on the issue. While I initially supported those who wanted to allow "Gay Marriage" I did not expect them to be so aggressive at attacking our morality or our children, and in doing so they have slowly turned me to be opposed to such sentiments. FAR before they brought abortion to the Supreme Court, I would have felt those who truly were on the Lord's side would have tackled the issue of Gay Marriage in the nation in regards to how far and how much it should be enabled in relation or comparison to what they now call "Traditional Marriage" in the public consumption. The fact that BOTH parties now seem to be in support of such things and we have widespread acceptance just shows how far the abomination spoken of in the New Testament and the rest of the Bible has gained ground among our World today. It is interesting that we are as the Nephites and the Lamanites, for as in the Book of Mormon, as the Nephites grew more wicked the Lamanites grew righteous in comparison. In many nations which we have conquered or opposed in the past in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East where they are not Christian but of other religions, their laws regarding morality have become more moral while ours have become less moral. While I am happy to promote freedom for all, I am less happy to hand weapons which others will use to try to attack the morality and morals of my grandchildren and eventually great grandchildren and beyond. Thus, I am torn on the issue. If the Church supports such a bill though, far from it for me to disagree. Instead, it is better for me to stay silent on my actual thoughts (which would be a much longer post...if you know me) regarding the Bill itself and say I support the Church's statement from here on out and hope that such actions will help mend fences and relationships among us and our brothers and sister.
  23. Overall, we have far more freedom than others. HOWEVER, there are areas we have lost (and others where we have gained) freedom of expression in the past century (or more accurately, the past 70 years). Many would consider these good areas to have shortened people's freedom to do things, others probably consider them terrible. Ironically, the CHURCH itself supports some of the areas where these freedoms have been lost. The BIG area for loss of freedom is the ability to choose who you want to employ and who you want to sell to. We lost the ability to discriminate against other people in regards to employment or in publicly selling retail. This means that we cannot discriminate against someone on the basis of sex, religion, race, and various other factors (such as, when it applies, disability for example. Is this a good abridgment? There are MANY who feel this IS a good abridgment of freedom. Is this the sign that you are talking about where we are heading down the path of the 1920s Germany? Historically speaking, it stems from the opposite end of the spectrum so that would be ironic. More likely, those who wish to enable discrimination more blatantly including areas of employment tend to exhibit the signs of facism far more than those who are on the opposite end of the spectrum. That doesn't mean we should label any of these groups which are composed of the majority of Americans as Facist or heading in that direction though. Doing so normally weakens an argument unless there is legitimate comparisons that facts and HISTORY agree with. Most who try to say these things are lacking in their historical accuracy in many instances and wish instead to exaggerate to try to make a political point. Laws to disable discrimination in these factors normally go counter to the discrimination that abounded during the regimes that existed in Germany and other portions of Europe during the 1930s. They also normally are somewhat counter to the Communist government's actual actions during the 1950s and 60s where discrimination against certain groups were especially high. That said, we have also gained many freedoms of expression (not that I would actually think these are good things, but if you are pro free speech without boundaries, you may). Ironically again, the CHURCH has actually opposed many of these. The expressions that deal with immoral actions, portrayals, and what would been seen as extremely offensive morally in the past are now allowed to be shown with almost no barriers in the United States and Europe today. The freedom to express such things in media came about from such individuals such as Larry Flynt (sp?) and others who challenged our communities standards of morality in expressing such things. As a result, today we see things in R-Rated, PG-13, and even PG movies that would have been highly censored or outright banned when I was a child. Is this a good thing? There is a fine balance between what is good and what is evil and what should or should not be allowed in our expression and our free expression of things as well as what we are allowed or not allowed to do. This balance has changed over the past 100 years. If we go back 100 years, Kyrie Irving would have simply not been employed in most cases, at least in the sports he plays. He may have had trouble finding a job that would employ him period, as employers were MUCH more free to employ who they wanted and take their own discrimination as a factor. Today, due to laws that said we could not do certain things, the landscape has changed. Businesses try to use these to cater to what they feel will bring the most money. In that regard, one of the aspects which is still attractive for businesses in the Western World is the freedom to ACT as THEY CHOOSE (instead of what the government mandates what they do, as many businesses found out to their detriment in Russia recently). They still try to cater to audiences in ways they feel will bring them the most money. When an employee decides to impact that in a negative way, there are MANY instances (not just the NBA, many businesses just fire people who do this) where the business will take action against that employee. This means that when certain things may be stated and become widely public, and a business deems that will turn off many of their audience, they will take action. If we disagree with how much influence one group of the public has over business decisions, then the best way to counter that is to get a group that has more money and SPENDS more money to have a BIGGER impact to change the way that business operates. A business CAN dictate what an employee says or acts when that employee is being seen as representative of that business. They are not a government, and as long as they are part of the Western World and we still have freedom of speech, they will still be protected in their ability to do such things in most instances. It is wonderful to live in the Free World. It is wonderful to enjoy the blessings thereof. However, when we talk about what freedoms we have had abridged and what freedoms we gain, it is good to see exactly what freedoms we really have lost (for example, the freedom to discriminate in business, which I don't know a ton of people that are against this, but...there you go) as well as the freedoms we have gained (we have gained the ability to be much more graphic in our expressions and portrayals regarding language, violence and immorality due to what some deem as art taking precedence over community standards of morality for example). Many may not realize that by calling for the abridgment of expression and speech from businesses, we are ALSO CALLING for OUR OWN ABRIDGMENT of expression, though many do not realize that this would be the end result if we try to push these things to their logical conclusion.
  24. AS far as current events, this one is perhaps the most dangerous now. I do not know what actions NATO will take. I do not think they can simply let it slide, and since as of right now Russia seems to not be taking responsibility, it seems that something should need to be done in order to show that this is unacceptable. If it is a Russian feint, they must be shown that we aren't going to put up for such a thing. The danger is that this could lead to an escalation, the end of which escalations could eventually lead to a bigger confrontation or even war. Such a war could be nuclear. I don't know where this is going, but I cannot see that we can simply shrug our shoulders and ignore it. Update: It appears President Biden has said it is unlikely it came from Russia and could be that it was part of the anti-missile defense that Ukraine shot, meaning it was part of the weaponry used by Ukraine when trying to shoot Russian missiles down. Obviously, they missed and it hit Poland and killed two people there.
  25. You realize the NBA is NOT a government entity. It is a business. Right? The great thing about the US is that PEOPLE (including BUSINESSES that are OWNED by people) have more freedom to do what they want, rather than be dictated what they have to do. I see MANY who WANT the government to dictate to people who own businesses what they MUST do. There is a BIG difference between a business and the people who own it doing what they WANT to do (including telling an employee [who can quite if they wish rather than being put in prison or executed] to stop doing something or if that employee wants to stay as an employee or be hired what they must do to remain so) and being DICTATED what they MUST do by a government. It still happens in the US, but to compare it to N. Korea or other places is not something that is really logical. I see there are many out there that are confused WHY businesses can actually DO things that they WANT to do. Many of these people want to take away the FREEDOM of these businessmen in ORDER to force them to do certain things. Freedom of speech does NOT mean freedom from consequences, but freedom to say what you want without the government coming and killing you or giving you long lengthy prison sentences. Kyrie can stop playing basketball anytime he wants without fear of being executed or a life long stay in prison. This is one of the wonderful things about the United States that many places do not have. In addition, the business owner can set limitations on their employees in a freer manner than almost anywhere else in the world (limitations normally revolve around safety and discrimination) without fear of being executed (such as what happens in China when business owners don't do what the government tells them, perhaps Kyrie would feel more at home there...of course...he wouldn't have the freedom to say what he wants either...but he could get the business owners executed if they wanted to do what they do here as well) or sent to long prison sentences (also China). Why is it that you stand for trying to say Irving is being persecuted, but seem to want to do so by abridging the rights of a LOT of other citizens in the United States. The United States is a nation which allows a LOT of freedom, and it is NOT just limited to a certain group of people. If I start a business and then make it a corporation, I have a LOT more freedom to say and do what I want with that business than many other places around the world. That is because such actions are protected in the United States. Even when people do not like my actions and call for my freedom to be abridged, luckily I would still be able to do as I WANT with MY business, even if it is a corporation in which I only own a majority of stock. However, it does not mean people have to buy what I am producing, or making. Freedom allows them to choose as well. IF WE force the abridgment of other's freedoms to do what they want with their businesses, eventually it will funnel back into where WE, individually, ALSO may lose freedoms. PS: When posting items from Yeonmi Park, why not use HER youtube channel instead of a anti-science organization that has rejected that smoking was bad for health as well as working hand in hand with tobacco companies in the few decades to promote smoking as healthy and reject the science behind showing smoking causes cancer in second hand smoke and other such items in the past? In the video it appears she is addressing the "woke" ideas that are perpetuating in the university/education systems today. This is not necessarily businesses, though it obviously is applicable seeing that Columbia university is a private university and not a government run institute. Her youtube channel is located (if I got the link correct) here. Voice of North Korea This would be her Youtube channel. In that regards, once again, when wondering WHY businesses may cater to such groups as the "Woke" crowd...the same freedoms apply again. The consequences of NOT catering may be more costly than catering to them. Freedom to choose does not mean freedom from consequence. By choosing NOT to cater to them it could mean lost sales and less money. Just as a business is free to make choices and decisions, so are customers. They can choose to buy, support, or spend their money how they like. Why... Because this is America, and we have more freedom here than most places in the world. People get confused between freedom of speech and action, and freedom of consequences all the time. Freedom of speech means that the government cannot go and punish you for making or dong things. It cannot force you to say or do things in that same manner. However, that freedom is not just for one person or one class, it applies to everyone. That includes businessmen as well as employees, employers as well as employees. We DO have limitations set on businesses and those who own them so they are not as free as others in the nation already (they are not allowed to discriminate for example), but they STILL have many freedoms that we probably should not abridge lest we start down that dark path towards the abridgment of everyone's freedoms.