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MikeH's Journal
Posted by MikeH in Latest Breaking News
Thu Dec 08th 2011, 12:46 AM
Response to photo in thread titled Strong new evidence of ancient water on Mars
To find the North Star, you look to the north. To find the Milky Way, you look the udder way.
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Posted by MikeH in Latest Breaking News
Thu Dec 08th 2011, 12:21 AM
Response to OP: Harry Morgan, Colonel Potter on ‘M*A*S*H,’ Dies at 96
Actually I find it hard to believe that Harry Morgan had still been alive up until just now. I remember him playing Officer Bill Gannon in Dragnet. I liked him in that role, though he did seem to be a yes-man to Sergeant Joe Friday (as played by Jack Webb who died in 1982). I remember one episode in which Bill Gannon was adding a lot of sugar to his coffee, and he made the comment that sugar was the salt of the earth.
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Sat Nov 12th 2011, 04:13 PM
Response to response to my previous post
"Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones." — Marcus Aurelius These seem to cover the possibilities, and seem to be very good advice about an attitude to take toward life ...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Sat Nov 12th 2011, 01:38 AM
Respose to post in thread titled "My Road to Atheism Was a Long One"
There is no God. Our existence is without purpose. We are adrift in an uncaring void indifferent to all our mortal toil. In the end nothing we do matters. If this is true then, for instance, particularly given the fact that I am 60 years old and do not have any children, I don't see any reason that I ought to spoil my happiness in this life by agonizing and worrying myself about how global warming, threats to the planet's sustainability, and environmental degradation are going to affect peopl...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Tue Nov 08th 2011, 11:29 PM
Respose to OP: Preaching Virtue of Spanking, Even as Deaths Fuel Debate (with link to NY Times article)
I wonder how fundamentalist Christians who preach and advocate spanking children, such as Michael Pearl and James Dobson, would have raised the boy Jesus, and what they would have done to him, had he been in their charge. Actually I think we know the answer. As said by Jesus, "As you have done it unto the least of these, you have done it unto me."
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Wed Oct 12th 2011, 03:49 PM
Response to poster who stated "When one believes in a God they cannot prove or see, God rewards them for their faith."
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Tue Oct 11th 2011, 08:31 PM
Response to OP regarding the statement "God Said It, I Believe It, That Settles It…"
A believer making the statement “God said it, I believe it, that settles it,” is not much different from a German in the 1930's making the statement “Hitler said it, I believe it, that settles it." If the God believed in by Christians and other theists is really real (important qualifier: IF), then our critical facilities, which include our common sense and our ability to think logically and rationally, are gifts given to us by God. And if that is the case then using these gifts is much more h...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Tue Oct 11th 2011, 07:57 PM
Response to poster who stated "When one believes in a God they cannot prove or see, God rewards them for their faith."
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Fri Oct 07th 2011, 01:37 AM
Response to OP (by a Christian): I like Jesus. How about you?
I used to be a Christian. One thing I understood to be the point of the Christian faith, and which I took seriously, was that Jesus Christ is supposed to be alive today (after having been resurrected), and that one can have a personal relationship with him, and that such a relationship makes a transforming difference in a person's life. One supposedly can be given the "gift of the Holy Spirit", can be "indwelt by the Holy Spirit (or spirit of Christ)", can have the "peace of Christ", and can "...
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Posted by MikeH in The DU Lounge
Mon Oct 03rd 2011, 01:15 AM
In thread about the 1950's singing group "The Four Lads"
My parents had the album . From the link we can see the songs in the album. I remember my mother played it a lot, particularly in the years 1959 and 1960, when I was in 3rd and 4th grades. It reminds me both of some happy and some very unhappy memories from my childhood and grade school. I remember later seeing the movie Guys and Dolls on TV when I was older. I also remember their song "Standing On the Corner" from when I was 5 or 6 years old. I like the harmonies of the Four Lads and othe...
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Posted by MikeH in The DU Lounge
Mon Oct 03rd 2011, 12:51 AM
Response to OP: Does anyone else remember cannibal jokes?
What happens to a dentist if he is captured by cannibals? He becomes a stewed dent.
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Posted by MikeH in General Discussion
Sat Oct 01st 2011, 05:53 PM
Happy 87th birthday to probably the most truly good person to hold the office of President of the United States, certainly in recent times. And a Christian in the best sense of the word.
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Posted by MikeH in The DU Lounge
Sat Oct 01st 2011, 04:24 PM
Response to OP: Did your mom think bikini panties were slutty? Mine did. (I.e. the OPer's mom did.)
Or hair on any part of a woman's body below the neck? It strikes me that one thing that many people, and society in general, are very prudish about in this day and age, is body hair on women. It seems that women in our society practically have to go through all kinds of pain and trouble to remove any and all body hair, and look like plastic Barbie dolls. This seems to be more true now than it was in the 1960's or 1970's. Back then women shaved their legs and underarms, but many women still k...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Fri Aug 26th 2011, 05:58 PM
Response to a fundamentalist (but not "ultra fundamentalist" ) Christian
I believe the philosophy including the only way to salvation is through Jesus Christ. Anyone that accepts Jesus is saved, even if the acceptance is by a terrible criminal on his deathbed. That does not mean that all a person has to do is live in any manner they choose and simply say the words at the last minute of life. A person has to truly accept in their heart. So a murder victim who happens to not have "accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior" is "unsaved" and goes to hell. However if the...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Fri Aug 26th 2011, 05:31 PM
Response to a fundamentalist (but not "ultra fundamentalist" ) Christian
And I do believe in God, specifically Christianity as outlined in the New Testament. In your terms, that means I believe in a God that plays favourites - only those that believe a certain way are saved and go to heaven. So those who happen to guess correctly by believing a certain way (i.e. by "accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior") go to heaven. Those who happen to guess wrong by adhering to a religion other than Christianity, say Islam, are condemned and go to hell. And usually those wh...
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Posted by MikeH in General Discussion
Thu Aug 18th 2011, 09:12 PM
Response to OP: even the birds are looting
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Wed Aug 03rd 2011, 02:10 AM
Response to OP: Spectrum of theistic probability: Where are you on Dawkins' scale? (1 = Strong theist, 7 = Strong atheist)
I.e. I would consider myself to be technically agnostic but leaning toward believing in some kind of Intelligence higher and greater than ourselves. I consider the reality of a God or higher Intelligence to be an open question, and definitely not an absurdity. I used to be a Christian; however I found that my supposedly having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and with God through Jesus Christ, had not ever been of help to me in enabling me to better deal with any distressing circumst...
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Posted by MikeH in The DU Lounge
Mon Jul 11th 2011, 02:35 AM
Response to OP: can you drive a stick shift?
When I was 16 and just starting to learn to drive, in 1967, my family had a station wagon with a stick shift. I would often go practice driving in the station wagon with my dad and sometimes my younger brothers and sisters along a country road which went from our town to a neighboring town. I remember the car going herky-jerky when I tried to use the clutch and shift gears, and I never mastered the clutch and the stick shift. About a year later our family moved and my dad had a Volkswagen whi...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Wed Jul 06th 2011, 08:49 PM
Response to Poll question: Which of these three is the most patriotic? One of the choices was eating apple pie
It is eating apple pie. By eating apple pie (or especially apple pi pie) one will certainly become pious. I will agree, though, that protecting and defending peoples' first amendment rights is really the only truly patriotic of the choices.
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Posted by MikeH in The DU Lounge
Wed Jul 06th 2011, 08:40 PM
Response to OP: What do you love that everyone else hates?
I am a heterosexual male who has had a liking for body hair on women since being an adolescent. I particularly like a woman who is otherwise attractive, and who has serious and significant body hair (i.e. more than just a little), and who lets her body hair grow out, and who likes and is not ashamed of her natural state and her natural hair. I find such a woman to be very sexy. I have always particularly liked hairy or unshaven legs on women, but I also like hair on a woman's arms, underarms,...
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Posted by MikeH in The DU Lounge
Wed Jul 06th 2011, 08:13 PM
Response to OP: Dan Fogelberg - Leader of the band
Musically speaking the song is very nice; however there are some things in the song that I have some problems with, and that I feel very strongly about. I myself had a very difficult dad (who died 25 years ago), and I do not have the same sentiments about my dad that Dan Fogelberg had about his dad. However even apart from my own personal issues with my dad I have some problems with some things in the song that I feel I need to say something about. 1) I very strongly question the idea that a...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Sun Jun 19th 2011, 03:01 PM
Response to OP: Old Testament Father's Day (Isaac and Abraham)
:rofl: :thumbsup:
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Sat Jun 18th 2011, 08:26 PM
Response to OP: Poll question: Christian DUers, do you believe in the Ten Commandments?
Not being a Christian any more, I do not consider myself to be under any obligation to submit to the supposed absolute authority of the Bible. The Bible was written by fallible human beings, and I think it exhibits human fallibility and human prejudice just like anything else that has ever been written. About the commandment to “honor your father and mother” One of the things in the Bible that I think is wrong is the commandment which says to “honor your father and mother.” I think it is ve...
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Posted by MikeH in General Discussion
Mon Jun 06th 2011, 09:05 PM
I remember that 1968 was a very tumultuous year, both for our nation and in the world, and for me personally. I had many problems in high school, even during my senior year and right before I graduated. I was dealing with a lot of personal issues and personal unhappiness at the time, and all the turmoil I heard about in our nation and the world at the time helped to add to my anxiety. I remember my dad waking me up on the morning of the 5th telling me that Robert Kennedy was shot, and the nex...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Fri May 27th 2011, 12:54 AM
I have some problems with what you say here: Life has no inherent meaning, value, or purpose. Just atoms in motion. We are tormented by disease, birth defects, starvation, disfigurements, and each other. We can barely communicate anything because we assume so much. Why not try to make life a little better? Health care, education, clean water and air, shelter, and a little tolerance will increase happiness and pleasure. Happiness and pleasure are their own rewards, so why not pursue them? I fe...
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Posted by MikeH in Religion/Theology
Fri May 20th 2011, 10:03 PM
Response to OP: Losing counties in Ten commandments cases face growing legal bills to ACLU
I would hope that the money is paid by those who have been responsible for or who have been sympathetic to the displaying of the commandments (and not by the taxpayers). It is very unfortunate that necessary public services are held hostage by their irresponsible actions. Anybody who wants to display the Ten Commandments (one of which says to unconditionally "honor your father and mother") might as well tell me to my face that it was my duty to meekly take and gladly accept the emotional and p...
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Posted by MikeH in General Discussion
Wed May 18th 2011, 09:45 PM
Response to OP: Ended a 27-year friendship today.
It definitely sounds like it was the right and healthy thing for you to end your friendship, though it doesn't sound like he was really a particularly good friend. However even if he were a good friend it would have been quite appropriate for you to reevaluate your friendship. I don't think one can maintain a friendship with somebody whom one is not able to respect, and it definitely sounds like that is the case with this particular former friend. I myself ended a 30 year friendship in 2005 a...
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Posted by MikeH in General Discussion
Wed May 18th 2011, 05:15 PM
Response to a fundamentalist Christian's response to my previous post
The Baptists believe that since you once accepted Christ, you are still saved. Although I currently attend a Baptist church, I do not agree with this doctrine. I hold the Lutheran view that if you make the decision to reject Christ, even after having accepted Him earlier, you can lose your salvation. The reason is that God does not force anyone to accept His gift. It is left as a matter of free individual choice for each of us. Zeb, to tell the truth I really do not care what one group of Chris...
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Posted by MikeH in General Discussion
Wed May 18th 2011, 03:45 PM
If I really believed everyone who didn't believe a certain way was destined for eternal punishment, I'd be trying to convince everyone I could. Even if I might be convinced for myself of my need to "accept Christ", and even if I might accept Jesus Christ and "being saved" for myself (which I did once), I was never able to accept having the terrible thought in the back of my mind that OTHERS are destined to eternal punishment if, for whatever reason, they do not come to "accept Jesus Christ" in t...
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Posted by MikeH in General Discussion
Wed May 18th 2011, 01:04 AM
Response to a fundamentalist Christian's statement: If I quote Scripture, make no mistake - I am not making the rules - just reading them.
If I quote Scripture, make no mistake - I am not making the rules - just reading them. And above all don't question "the rules", or the source from which "the rules" come. Like the German officials being tried at Nuremberg whose defense was that they were "just following orders".
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Profile Information
MikeH
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1123 posts
Member since 2002
San Diego, California, USA
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Learning from Hitler and his childhood
What point is there for us today in learning about Hitler and his history? For me, the main point is this: our knowledge will serve as a warning against our blindness and encourage us to give it up once and for all and to struggle against collective repression. This is what I do consistently in all my books in order to help people understand the psychodynamics of the mistreatment of children and its immeasurable danger for society, as demonstrated by Hitler's case. My explanations are by no means intended to suggest pity for a man as merciless as Hitler.

it was in large part owing to Hitler and his history that I became aware of the dangers of our traditional morality. We are exhorted to honor our parents and never question them no matter what they have done. Yet when I realize that millions of human beings had to die so that Adolf Hitler could keep his repression of childhood trauma intact, that millions were subjected to humiliation in concentration camps so that he never had to recognize how he had once been humiliated, then I believe that one can't point out these connections often enough in order to shed light on this unconscious production of evil. How should young people be expected to recognize and reject inhumanity and crime if these continue to be disguised instead of being pointed out as plainly as possible? Only when young people are permitted to know exactly what happened and how it could happen, only if they don't allow anything to stifle their curiosity and are not afraid of the truth, can they free themselves from the burden placed upon them by their forebears' blindness.

Alice Miller
Adolf Hitler: How Could a Monster Succeed in Blinding a Nation?

See also
For Your Own Good: Preface to the American Edition

For Your Own Good: Adolf Hitler's Childhood: From Hidden to Manifest Horror
The "Final Solution", Adaptation to Society's Norms, Morality and Duty, and Childhood Feelings
People with any sensitivity cannot be turned into mass murderers overnight. But the men and women who carried out "the final solution" did not let their feelings stand in their way for the simple reason that they had been raised from infancy not to have any feelings of their own but to experience their parents' wishes as their own. These were people who, as children, had been proud of being tough and not crying, of carrying out all their duties "gladly," of not being afraid--that is, at bottom, of not having an inner life at all.

...

This perfect adaptation to society's norms--in other words, to what is called "healthy normality"--carries with it the danger that such a person can be used for practically any purpose. It is not a loss of autonomy that occurs here, because this autonomy never existed, but a switching of values, which in themselves are of no importance anyway for the person in question as long as his whole value system is dominated by the principle of obedience. He has never gone beyond the stage of idealizing his parents with their demands for unquestioning obedience; this idealization can easily be transferred to a Führer or to an ideology. Since authoritarian parents are always right, there is no need for their children to rack their brains in each case to determine whether what is demanded of them is right or not. And how is this to be judged? Where are the standards supposed to come from if someone has always been told what was right and what was wrong and if he never had an opportunity to become familiar with his own feelings and if, beyond that, attempts at criticism were unacceptable to the parents and thus were too threatening for the child? If an adult has not developed a mind of his own, then he will find himself at the mercy of the authorities for better or worse, just as an infant finds itself at the mercy of its parents. Saying no to those more powerful will always seem too threatening to him.

...

Morality and performance of duty are artificial measures that become necessary when something essential is lacking. The more successfully a person was denied access to his or her feelings in childhood, the larger the arsenal of intellectual weapons and the supply of moral prostheses has to be, because morality and a sense of duty are not sources of strength or fruitful soil for genuine affection. Blood does not flow in artificial limbs; they are for sale and can serve many masters. What was considered good yesterday can--depending on the decree of government of party--be considered evil and corrupt today, and vice versa. But those who have spontaneous feelings can only be themselves. They have no other choice if they want to remain true to themselves. Rejection, ostracism, loss of love, and name calling will not fail to affect them; they will suffer as a result and will dread them, but once they have found their authentic self they will not want to lose it. And when they sense that something is being demanded of them to which their whole being says no, they cannot do it. They simply cannot.

Alice Miller
For Your Own Good: The Central Mechanism of "Poisonous Pedagogy"
Other tyrants and their childhood
In the lives of all the tyrants I examined, I found without exception paranoid trains of thought bound up with their biographies in early childhood and the repression of the experiences they had been through. Mao had been regularly whipped by his father and later sent 30 million people to their deaths, but he hardly ever admitted the full extent of the rage he must have felt toward his own father, a very severe teacher who had tried through beatings to "make a man" out of his son. Stalin caused millions to suffer and die because even at the height of his power his actions were determined by unconscious infantile fear of powerlessness. Apparently his father, a poor cobbler from Georgia, attempted to drown his frustration with liquor and whipped his son almost every day. His mother displayed psychotic traits, was completely incapable of defending her son and was usually away from home either praying in church or running the priest's household. Stalin idealized his parents right up to the end of his life and was constantly haunted by the fear of dangers that had long since ceased to exist but were still present in his deranged mind. The same might be true of many other tyrants. The groups of people they singled out for persecution and the rationalization mechanisms they employed were different in each case, but the fundamental reason behind it was probably identical. They often drew on ideologies to disguise the truth and their own paranoia. And the masses chimed in enthusiastically because they were unaware of the real motives, including those operative in their own biographies. The infantile revenge fantasies of individuals would be of no account if society did not regularly show such naive alacrity in helping to make them come true.

Alice Miller
The Political Consequences of Child Abuse
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