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Everything posted by Charon

  1. I think you're right, Tammy. Basically everyone just mindlessly accepted whatever the media (mostly fed by CPS lies) said about the FLDS. They cannot separate the actual factual content of what people say (of which there has been almost none against the FLDS that withstands any scrutiny) from the way they say it. They cannot even tell when a factual claim is being made as opposed to some woman's emotional spin on events and screed against her ex. This whole thing from start to finish was just bull****. These people have done nothing wrong other than be politically incorrect. This action on the part of CPS, the local sherrif and judge Walthers may be close to the most outrageously totalitarian move on the part of a state government against its citizens, yet. And, it turns out these people aren't just not doing anything wrong, but they are almost completely unimpeachable! What really needs to happen but will never come to pass is that all the people involved in terrorizing the FLDS need to do life in a federal prison. You don't just get to make up the law, ladies -- just because you think the FLDS women aren't cool or just because of your neurotic Lifetime Movie moral philosophy. I am ashamed that I have posted here as much as I have in the past (or at all for that matter).
  2. This whole thing is a sham from start to finish. There are like 5 girls from 16 to 19 that are possible cases of all this baby-raping-bs that CPS has been trotting out. It is not illegal to marry a 16 year old. This is not a cult. And, the women are not brainwashed just because they do not buy into a whole bunch of modern liberal ideas surrounding gender issues. And, raising their children not to buy into a bunch of politically correct solcial crap is not abuse. This is nothing more than a bunch of feminists and liberals trying to make up de facto laws. At least look at the other side of the story: http://www.captivefldschildren.org/ Personally, I have a lot more in common with the mormons than CPS or the guys running around in fatigues with assault rifles terrorizing a bunch of Laura Ingallses and their children. This is sick. And, the only thing sicker than the fact that CPS did this is the fact that the media and the public at large are going around repeating the bald faced lies that CPS is promulgating as well as speculating a whole litany of their own BS about "what must be going on" and "very disturbing things" they have noticed.
  3. And, that is why, I personally think, you really can't do a whole bunch of subjects. Even though I am something of a subject matter expert in mathematics, I still feel like it is less an expertise issue and more a personal interest issue. Myrtle is doing a better job conveying math to the kids just because she is doing it, and that is what they pick up on -- her attitude and interest and priorities in life. You just can't fake that. And, how many things can you really genuinely be interested in -- one or two. It's not like you can't box check a whole lot of stuff, but to really do something -- to have an interest that goes "outisde the box", so to speak -- I think you just can't do it all. I think we really do math, as in "whatever it takes". We also refuse to drop Latin but it isn't nearly the same as the infinite subject that mathematics is for us. After that, it rapidly gets to doing things very sporadically or doing our hour and what we get done we get done and that's it kind of thing and so on. In other words, it is kind of box checking or not even checking that box at all. And, it is mostly so that when we have the Joneses over for dinner, we aren't completely mortified when our kids don't know who the Egyptians were or something.
  4. I don't know that there is any way around this phenomenon, and, in the end, it may be what matters most. My father was a mathematician, and he did not actually do virtually any math with me growing up. And yet, I have always had a philosophical approach to life -- a distinctly mathematical/"rigorous" mindset. It comes out in the language as you say and in the little things one does or doesn't say -- what's considered an important consideration on any given issue -- the way he questions assumptions all the time. I was just raised like that. Myrtle has been doing a lot of math over the years -- not just computational or even intense computational stuff, but number theory, mathematical induction -- interesting problems and proofs. We talk about it all the time. And, we apply it to something the kids might be doing. Now, it looks like I may be doing some math, myself, at my level. (I have started working meticulously through Lang's Algebra, for instance.) And, we talk about it infront of the kids. And, just beyond that we say lots of complictaed stuff. I am notorious for my multiple negations used to make subtle distinctions that I just expect everyone to automatically follow. (Those are probably moments of true obnoxious geekiness on my part.) Myrtle and I talk a lot about other things in the same kind of way we talk about math. I wonder if our real program isn't so much Frank Allen or Gelfand or Singapore but just doing math ourselves and becoming as personally preoccupied with it as we can to create a "math culture".
  5. Well, I think that you are actually supposed to be able to go into calculus after an "college prep" or "honors" Algebra II which is supposed to include some trigonometry and other transcendental functions (i.e. log and exponential functions). I say that's how it is "supposed to be" without really accounting for what all may very well have become common practice in this day and age. However, I will say this much: college algebra will always be more or less remedial math in college. Strong freshman coming into college will be going into calculus or higher -- even the (probably honors) English majors. So, placing into college algebra should probably not be seen as a good thing so much as an acceptable outcome for a non-math-dependent major. With that said, I have to say, I was looking at those compass tests. Good grief! I think Quiver of 10's kid, though, didn't just place into the course before calculus but in an algebra course much lower than that based on how she was saying it. (I'm not sure.) But, personally, I am a little worried about what course I might place into, for crying out loud! (In other words, I don't think those are particularly easy tests. But, I do think that if you went through Singapore's NEM series, for instance, you would probably place into calculus.)
  6. Well, there were two arrests of these people. It was because they had a warrant to search the temple and it is required that the men protect the temple. So, when the law enforcement officers came to search the temple the men of the FLDS surrounded it to provide nominal resistance. In that exchange two people got arrested essentially for obstructing justice. (And, that is a legitimate arrest regardless of how legit their being there in the first place was.) There have been no arrests for sexually assaulting a minor or even bigamy, yet. You would think that after ransacking the temple, they would at least be able to get some kind of bigamy or something. And, you would not expect to see it come up in the custody hearing over the course of several weeks and then all of a sudden the guy get's arrested. You would see him just get arrested right now while the state also builds a criminal case against him and you would see it come up in the custody hearing evenutally, too. The raid happened on the 3rd. It is over two weeks later. In all of that, they don't have enough evidence to even arrest someone and charge them criminally?
  7. If there is enough evidence of any of these allegations, be it video or anything else, then they would be all over the alleged perpetrators with criminal proceedings. There have been no arrests -- not even after they turned the church upside down and got all the church documents and so on. I doubt there will be any arrests and I don't think they have any real evidence. The best they can do now is turn something up with the DNA or get one of the kids to start testifying. If they had any good evidence at this point in time, somebody would be arrested and they would be preparing for a separate criminal proceeding.
  8. Well, of course. Those are the critics of FLDS. They could be exaggerating or even just lying. It could be that it really felt like that for them (which is why they left), but that it isn't really like that for most of the other women. There's all kinds of ways something like that gets spun. But, we are talking about a government agency intervening, here. That is all about the legality of it. There is no case for abuse that warrants a CPS raid or the like if they are operating within the law.
  9. No it doesn't. CPS is clearly reaching on that. I doubt it will get particularly challenged, though. CPS was certainly not obliged to do any of this. They wanted to and they may well take a serious fall in the long run for it (although I wouldn't count on that, either). In terms of their basis for removing the children, they really don't have any, and in the end, I am betting those kids are going back.
  10. No, you don't need any of that to arrest the parents. If my neighbor takes a video of me and my wife beating my kids, the police will come and arrest us both on the spot and put my kids in the custody of CPS. What you are talking about is how they eventually get custody permanently transfered to someone else. Now, if the hype is all true, then they might uncover evidence that does get them a real case of abuse, and at that point they will actually arrest someone, collect more evidence and start building a criminal case against them. As for what promted the raid, http://gosanangelo.com/news/2008/apr/06/teens-calls-led-to-raid-search/
  11. Actually, I think we had more math majors in the early 70s than ever before. Begel, the guy that headed the largest move to institute New Math (the SMSG), as Princeton trained mathematician who studied under Lefschetz. I think he even has a theorem named after him. The reason "everybody knows" that New Math was an abject failure is more the result of a systematic campaign waged against it, primarily by Morris Kline. It wasn't just New Math but really rigor in mathematics, in general, I think. I really kind of think it even gets into a professional contest between pure math and applied math (like they are competing with each other for public interest and funding). At any rate, if you get a quality text, then it is likely as close as you will ever get to getting math handed down by society's mathematicians. And, the halmarks of New Math -- the set theory and logic and proofs and such -- are a lot closer to what mathematics as practiced by mathematicians is like.
  12. Why do you say this? You are saying that there is child abuse going on and that the women are brainwashed and ignorant of the outside world and so on. I really don't know that to be true at all. That is what a lot of anti-FLDS people have said about the FLDS. Obviously, you can't just take that for granted as if it were a fact. I'll agree that marrying off a 14 yo is pretty extreme. It is certainly skirting the absolute limits of the law. But, don't forget that the law did permit that. Yeah, I would never do that with my daughter, but just because the neighbors do when it is technically legal and so on and so forth doesn't justify raiding my whole neighborhood, alleging that I am part of a conspiracy to rape and abuse children (because I went along with something that was apparently legal at the time) and so on. I think if they had a real case of child abuse, some people would have been arrested by now. Instead there is no criminal move and so it looks like CPS is just sensationalizing its case. (And, it may be because in Family Law there are different standards of evidence and so on.) You just can't take it for granted that there is all this child abuse or that the wives don't know what the outside world is like. There are 412 kids. They have produced 10 people under 18 they think might have been abused or something. On that basis, you cannot take all 412 as if it is a culture of abusing children, especially when something like 1 in 4 foster children get raped (and, that is where you will put them all if you get custody).
  13. Are you talking about the federal warrant? Basically, CPS said that the raid was mostly based on the phone call. They said that -- not journalists speculating about it. It is now known to be a complete hoax. Other than the federal warrant, I don't think there are other sealed warrants hanging out there. My point is that there have been no arrests. If you had some pretty good evidence to suspect one of the men of statutory rape or even just regular rape or all these other abuse allegations, then I think you would have arrested him by now. But, they don't seem to be making any moves at all in that direction. They are just making allegations like that as part of their attempt to take custody of the 412 children. And, it is CPS making the allegations not law enforcement in a criminal proceeding against one of the men. That's why I kind of doubt the DNA testing will come back with a whole lot. It's just a standard part of the process. And, they are tryign everything they can to drudge something up. It's a witch hunt. At this point, there is little reason to suspect that all these other allegations and stories about the evil polygamists isn't just more hype like everything else that has happened so far.
  14. No, I think they marry one wife, get a divorce and then marry the next wife and so on. It's at best a technicality, anyway. I doubt anything will or can come of it. If it could, those guys would be arrested for it already.
  15. It isn't rape if you married them. Yeah, it might be kind of disgusting that a 50 yo man marries a 16 yo girl, but it's not illegal -- not even now just after they changed the law in Texas. And, prior to that, you could have an 80 yo marry a 14 yo. Look, no one is defending their life style, here. But, that doesn't give us the right to persecute them just because we don't like them. From what I can tell, CPS doesn't have a leg to stand on. Even their own psychologist says the kids should not be put in foster care.
  16. No, there aren't just some -- they are all that way. This is mostly all hype by a bunch of people that hate the polygamists. Hey, I don't like polygamy, either. But, there's a lot of stuff I don't like and a lot of stuff people don't like about me. I would hope that just based on allegations -- especially ones that can be easily investigated and found to be false -- CPS and an army would not take over my neighborhood. What do you think CPS is going to say? That there was no abuse after all? After they roll in there with armored personel vehicles and crap like that and tear the place up? Or, do you think they are going to say "I think there is some cult-like practices of father and brothers raping their 9 yo sisters and daughters!.... Maybe there's some ritual human sacrifice to Warren Jeffs -- we don't know, we'll have to investigate further." So far, the best they have come up with is some speculation about a handful of cases amoungst hundreds. Again, I am not impressed. You could have done better than that just by randomly picking some block in the ghetto and rounding up a few hundred families in that area. And, you wouldn't just be speclating 10 days later, you would already have hard evidence.
  17. No -- that is almost certainly an at least exaggerated slander against them by their critics. Right now there are registered sex offenders living near me. Does that mean that CPS has the right to round up everyone in my neighborhood? What if I said "I don't think that guy should be considered a sex offender and I don't mind if he hangs around my 16 yo daughter"? Do you really think that gives you the legal right to take my daughter from me, take me into custody and so on? And, again, these are just allegations. Prove them and take the guy who did it into custody -- you don't get to take everyone else, too, just because they don't think he should get into trouble for it. If you get to arrest people for that, then everyone that disagrees with the latest law being passed has to go to jail. And, these allegations are probably just more outrageous hoaxes just like the 16 yo. Also, in terms of marrying and having sex with girls under the age of 18, in general, the law is what it is for a reason. Don't act like there isn't a long precedent for this in normal society. Obviously, 12 yos and so on are certainly over the top, but again, if you round up hundreds of people, it wouldn't be surprising that at least one of them really is a criminal. And, we still have yet to really see that. All we have seen is that most of the allegations turn out to just be speculation or hoaxes. And, they are obviously trying to "crack down" on them, so let's just say I am not surprised that they are making allegations like that.
  18. Forced marriage and sexual abuse are allegations. Have they been proven? Well, there are at least some people that have been arrested and others that have gone to jail. But, it is not even clear how legitimate that is, for that matter. And, even if that is all completely legitimate (because there isn't a campaign going on to systematically attack and destroy these people both publically and legally or anything), you are still talking about a handfull of cases. It certainly doesn't justify taking the whole community of people. You can find far more real provable cases of abuse just going down to the local ghetto and rounding up hundreds of women and children.
  19. Don't be ridiculous. They rolled in, literally with a tank (!), took everyone into custody and removed them against their will to some place for interrogation by CPS. They've only just now returned them to the ranch that they spent several days turning upside down and still have their children in custody. Don't you think these women know that public opinion is against them -- that half or more people think that the FLDS is some crazy cult? And, now the whole basis for the raid in the first place, is almost certainly bogus. They found the 30 year old woman posing as the 16 yo girl. How would you sound if an army of law enforcement personel descended upon your neighborhood and took everyone into custody and ransacked the place looking for something -- anything -- to charge someone -- anyone -- with? What if you knew that they were trying to stamp out your "evil" way of life and they didn't just take you but everyone -- all under completely false pretenses -- and they still had your kids? How would you talk? Would you go on Larry King and just talk normally -- just be your self? Or, would you be incredibly gaurded in everything you said so that not even the slightest slip of the toungue can be taken and used to twist both public opinion and legal proceedings against you? That is what they sound like not a stepford wife. They sound like the POWs from the Hanoi Hilton that were paraded out by the North Vietnamese to prove that they were not committing war crimes while Jane Fonda and the rest of America go around condemning the POWs as being the war criminals.
  20. No, they weren't stepford wives. An army rolled in literally with jack booted thugs and even a tank and took their kids and EVERYONE ELSE's. What would you do? I would be begging for my babies back. I would be very careful about what I might say to piss anyone off or that could be twisted six ways from Sunday by a world class propagandaist like a professional journalist. Do you really think any one of these women is any match for Larry King?? Or, even just a local television celebrity journalist? They aren't stepford wives -- they are POWs in current captivity. They are trying really hard not to piss anyone off and are begging to just go home. You can see their facade crack a little as they talk normally for a split second in the video and tell where their sentiments lie as well as exactly why they are so guarded in what they say. Yeah, it's pretty scary, alright, but not for the reasons you guys are saying.
  21. In a word, yes. LOL. You don't think that the teleological argument for the existence of god can be taught? Really? Maybe you don't know how to teach it, but it has been taught for a whole lot longer than any kind of modern day science or evolution has. Perhaps the reason you don't know how to teach it is because it is like asking how would you teach someone the use of "diagonal proofs by contradiction" in mathematics such as for the uncountability of the real numbers. Most people don't even know what that is let alone how to teach it. And, it is also not entirely specific. You could teach the specific proof that the real numbers are uncountable, and that may be the most straightforward way to go about it. The Intelligent Design analog would probably be to teach Aquinas' fifth way, I bet. That is sort of the most famous and prolific version of it. But, in both cases, it is one specific argument when the general mode of argumentation is what you are really trying to get at. You could certainly elaborate from there, though, to reading up on the other philosophers that have proposed such arguments of which there are a multitude. How would you teach evolution (like the theory of the descent of man from apes)? You would do the same kind of thing. It is true that you would use things like fossil evidence that is specifically dug up and analyzed by scientists as opposed to the sundial or watch or something like that which doesn't take a specialist to uncover and analyze. But, you would cover essentially other people's arguments and interpretation of the evidence just like you would with the teleological argument for the existence of god. In regards to the nature of what you are teaching, they are completely identical. What intelligent design is and how you would go about teaching something like that seems pretty transparent to me, frankly. It is true that it falls more in the field of philosophy than biology, but other than that, I truly don't see what the problem would be.
  22. Why do you think this makes ID out to be creationism? For instance here is an excerpt from the document: Is what leads you to believe that ID is just a cover for creationism alluded to or articulated here in this paragraph? Is it that it is the Discovery Institute or something?
  23. Well, that's just not true. Intelligent Design is the teleological argument for the existence of God. It goes all the way back. That a bunch of creationists champion that agrument now is irrelevant. That there are all these legal battles surrounding it is also irrelevant. What intelligent design is may even be more well-established than what science is, for that matter. If you ask the Intelligent Design advocates what they would teach (i.e. what they are apparently fighting in court for) then I think they will give as good of an answer as what people who want to teach evolution would give. And, I don't think that anyone's answer is really all that straight forward. It is less straight forward than what you teach to teach math or even to teach geometry or even just to teach the pythagorean theorem -- one specific thing in one specific subtopic of the subject. And, we have, indeed, ended up in quite distinct multiple outcomes because of its lack of straight-forwardness. What you would teach in history -- even less straight forward. People saying that "Intelligent Design" is just creationism or even as you say "goddidit" is a pretty obvious bastardization of it. You cannot dismiss 3000 years of the greatest minds to walk the Earth that easily. But, you will definitely have to crawl out of your nich of science and do something probably quite alien, namely philosophy, to really be able to understand it at all. Widespread disagreement about a topic just shows a lack of understanding of a topic -- not that the topic is subjective or undefined.
  24. So, just so that I can make sure and disagree with everyone, I will say a few things about evolution and ID. It is true that ID has a long and venerable history in Academia. However, I do think that it is not a scientific theory and I do think that evolution -- all of evolution, even macro-evolution -- is such a theory. ID is more of a meta-scientific theory which is why it belongs in philosophy. On the other hand, "There exists an external world" -- is that a scientific question? Or do you need to already know that to do science? "The external world is deterministic" -- again, I would argue it is a tenet of science (the standard ripost concerning Quantum Mechanics, notwithstanding), but does the proposition really belong to science? In a regular high school science class, a lot of these things are just kind of taken for granted. In fact, these issues are so ignored that one could get a PhD in physics or chemistry or biology and never even know what sorts of (very plausible) assumptions go into forming the basis of their scientific pursuits. Nevertheless, evolution is scientific. Macro-evolution is like astronomy. We don't really do experiments so much as make observations and predictions. That really is quite a bit different than firing electrons through slits or introducing a chemical to a bacterial culture or even breeding fruit flies. Nevertheless, it is part of science, I think, because it is empirical and "testable" in the sense that one can provide evidence and reason to form strong arguments in defense of various propositions that eventually even become widely accepted while others become "debunked". Intelligent Design could be a scientific assertion inasmuch as perhaps some bological experimenting demonstrates some of this "irreducible complexity" the modern day proponents keep talking about. It largely has not been, though, and there really isn't much accepted in mainstream science along those lines. Conversely, evolution is all over the place. Now it is worth noting a couple more things here. If you read the sources on this, they will say that they aren't necessarily at odds with evolution, in general -- just neo-Darwinism. While I do think that is a plenty salient point, I would also counter that there isn't a bright line between evolution-inspired non-science and just the regular scientific evolution like there is between the science part of evolution and the intelligent design that may be compatible with it. Even neo-Darwinism has more going for it specifically as science than Intelligent Design does (at least going by the literature). And, it does make a lot more specific and measurable (and far less grandiose) assertions. In fact, the very principle of Intelligent Design is that we stop looking for causes and reasons for outcomes and explain it all away with the designer. That is antithetical to the very idea of science. And, I think it, inherently, will take a metascientific (i.e. philosophical or mathematical) argument to show such a thing has happened -- that we have, indeed, gotten to a point that we can no longer do science. So, I really don't see how ID can ever be science by its very nature. And, conversely, no matter how sophisticated of a process we concoct for how natural selection produces the outcomes we see, does it not just Beg the Question to deny Intelligent Design? The process of natural selection, itself, is a complex outcome, for instance. (Now, I will also give the disclaimer that I do not adhere to Intelligent Design, so obviously I think there is a pretty good rebuttal, for instance, to that last remark. Ultimately, I do not believe ID works out as an argument. I just respect it is all....)
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