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Subject: Ilthuain: RSPer dierum insequitorum rss

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Antigonus Monophthalmus
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The following RSPer needs no introduction because I am unwilling to supply one. Really I just didn't feel like looking at the list, so I figured a newcomer (or maybe someone I only recently noticed? Who knows?) would be a safe bet. Really, Ilthuain and I had a great classics fight that was probably better than any other argument I've had in this crappy forum, so what a great choice, right? Especially since it was conducted in a manner which would have made the classic rhetores proud

So Ilthuain, I know nothing about you other than that you are a history buff, so I will begin with that:

What time period in history do you find most interesting?

Why do we study history?

Is there a time period that you think touches on deeper truths about humanity more than others?

If you had to propose a new way to organize history other than chronological order, how would you do so?

And last what's some crazy belief you hold that would be the subject of ridicule in whatever circle you hang out in?
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Congrats. Can you share something about yourself?
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Chief Slovenly
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BagpipeDan wrote:
Especially since it was conducted in a manner which would have made the classic rhetores proud


And the rest of us fairly amused. NERD FIGHT!
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Tobias Strobe
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I'll answer tomorrow!

(at work)
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Scott Russell
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What is your first gaming memory? Did you play many games as a kid? With family or friends or both?

Any sports growing up and/or now? Watching and/or playing?

Are you married and/or have kids? Spouse and kids play?

Where do you play most often now? How far would you travel for an evening of gaming? A day? A weekend? If you had the vacation, would you enjoy playing games for a week solid?

What am I missing in Nature of the Beast? My son and I only tried it once, but were unimpressed. Do you think that it improves with more plays?

Are your plays up to date? I notice only one play in your 9's and 10's.

Do you enjoy Go (rated 10) and Chess (rated 9) or simply admire their design/staying power/something else.

Are you as confrontational in person as you come across here? Is this deliberate or exaggerated by the medium of forum posts?

Biggest gripe about RSP? What keeps you coming back?

Why are a liberal? Have you always been one?

How is Portland's public transportation? Do you have a car anyway? Which do you use more often?

Apartment, house or some other living arrangement?

What do you do for fun besides BGG (And I assume boardgames)?

Why Portland? If not there, where?

Enjoy your time in the spotlight!

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Nate Sandall
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Have we met?
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Tobias Strobe
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BagpipeDan wrote:

So Ilthuain, I know nothing about you other than that you are a history buff, so I will begin with that:

What time period in history do you find most interesting?


The Peloponnesian War... at least at the present time. Around 10 years ago I focused my study on underground culture in 1950s America, but that gave way to ancients.

The allure of the Peloponnesian war is you can get to a point where you've read everything there is to read, so serious study of the subject isn't as formless as it is with a contemporary era.

Quote:

Why do we study history?


Oh Christ... this is a question for philosophers!

Personally, I study history for a few reasons, the most noble being that history is a great starting point for understanding human behavior on a large scale.

Growing up in the household I did likely influenced my decision. My father is a historian (focused on the American Civil War), so exposure to the subject was fairly pervasive. Because kids are kids, neither my brother or I pursued history as a major (I did education/psychology and he went the lucrative comp-sci route), but we do study seriously enough to make the old man proud.

I also love a good story, and for history to survive, it has to be a good story.

Quote:

Is there a time period that you think touches on deeper truths about humanity more than others?


That depends on the humans in question. The history of the Han dynasty probably means a whole lot more to a Chinese person than it does to me.

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If you had to propose a new way to organize history other than chronological order, how would you do so?


I wouldn't.

Quote:

And last what's some crazy belief you hold that would be the subject of ridicule in whatever circle you hang out in?


I gotta go work out, so I'll get to this when I get back. At this point I can't really think of one, but maybe a half hour on the elliptical will bring something to mind.
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-The website linked in your profile looks interesting, is it something you're involved in? Can you tell us more about it?

-Have you ever kissed a woman?
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Tobias Strobe
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qzhdad wrote:
What is your first gaming memory? Did you play many games as a kid? With family or friends or both?


My first gaming memory is playing "Run Yourself Ragged" on a yellow shag carpet.

I played a whole load of games with my dad and brother, mostly "The Awful Green Things from Outer Space" and a kid-friendly version of "Star Fleet Battles" that my dad put together.

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Any sports growing up and/or now? Watching and/or playing?


Yup. I straddled the line between nerd and jock, playing football through middle and high school.

I was -not- a star player.

Currently I don't play sports, but I am a big fan of tennis and a medium-sized fan of football and basketball.

Quote:

Are you married and/or have kids? Spouse and kids play?


I'm in a plural long-term relationship, and I do force the spice to play games with me.

No kids. It's not that I don't like 'em, it's just that I don't wanna deal with 'em all the time.

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Where do you play most often now? How far would you travel for an evening of gaming? A day? A weekend? If you had the vacation, would you enjoy playing games for a week solid?


I play at home, mostly. I was considering going to BGG con to play (and pimp my soon-to-be-released product), but the tickets sold out before I overcame my indecisiveness.

Playing games for a week solid is a bit much, but I do go on gaming vacations. Last July I spent a few days in Vegas for the Evolution Championship Series, a world fighting-game tournament... which isn't exactly for board gaming, but hey.

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What am I missing in Nature of the Beast? My son and I only tried it once, but were unimpressed. Do you think that it improves with more plays?


It sounds odd, but you might be missing enthusiasm.

When I was introduced to the game, it was by the designers, who were attending a convention that had very little interest in their product. Since I was one of the only people who was jazzed about the prospect of learning a game (the con bored me out of my skull but I had to be there), they spent a good deal of time teaching it to me, explaining some of the strategy, and just kinda hanging out and talking about gaming.

I guess their energy was contagious, and I ended up associating the game with the awesome time I had during an otherwise lame convention. Thus, I'm not in a position to say if the game "deserves" the rating I gave it, but it made me pretty happy, so that's what I gave it.

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Are your plays up to date? I notice only one play in your 9's and 10's.


Hell no. I'm terrible with the whole "keeping my internet up to date" thing.

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Do you enjoy Go (rated 10) and Chess (rated 9) or simply admire their design/staying power/something else.


My husband is a chess player, so we occasionally play (I lose) and have a good time.

Go, on the other hand, was an obsession of mine while I was in college. On average I'd play 5-10 games a week. Nothing is quite like two practiced players throwing down a game of drunk Go.

Quote:

Are you as confrontational in person as you come across here? Is this deliberate or exaggerated by the medium of forum posts?


Oh man... probably? I wouldn't really hang out with people who present some of the more loony-toons perspectives we find on these glorious internets, but I am a pretty argumentative bastard in real life.

Quote:

Biggest gripe about RSP? What keeps you coming back?


I think folks should permitted to throw around personal insults, because personal insults can be damn funny.

I keep coming back because I love to argue, and some of the other characters here are pretty amazing.

....more to come, gotta go to work
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Tobias Strobe
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qzhdad wrote:
Why are a liberal? Have you always been one?


Strange question, but I'll try to answer.

"Liberal" is not a label that I would self apply. By American standards I'm likely left of center, but I'd wager that western Europe would see some of my positions as centrist or even leaning right. For example, I'm pro-gun, pro-homeschooling, and pro-(rational) free market.

If the question is why do I tend to agree with the left side of American politics more than the right, I believe it is a combination of philosophy and experiences.

Philosophically, I believe that every person has a duty to contribute to their civilization if they wish to be part of it, and contributions are more efficient if they are cooperative. American conservative bellyaching about our low levels of taxation and compulsory participation in civics seems to me to be childlike selfishness and self aggrandizing myopia, so I tend to find myself on the liberal side more often than not.

My personal experiences with American conservatism in action have been less-than-ideal. The aftermath of hurricane Katrina (the rush to save face rather than save lives) convinced me that the right in this country isn't terribly serious about governance, so they probably should be excluded from power until they get their priorities in order. Additionally, at this point the right has moved away from the William Buckley standard of rational politics and into paranoid crazytown, so they're not an alternative to the occasionally corrupt, yet mostly sane, Democrats.

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How is Portland's public transportation? Do you have a car anyway? Which do you use more often?


Fan-freakin-tastic. I live next to a light rail (Max) station, so going downtown to see my (terrible, but awesome) PSU Vikings "play football" on Saturdays is a breeze.

Unfortunately, I'm a lazy bastard, so I mostly drive a 2005 VW GTI 1.8T.

Quote:
Apartment, house or some other living arrangement?


I live in the city, so apartment.
What do you do for fun besides BGG (And I assume boardgames)?

Quote:
Why Portland? If not there, where?


I've done a fair bit of traveling, and I've never been to a place where I felt so welcome. Portland really is something special, so aggressively anti-trend, a very DIY approach to life. People here are so gloriously strange. Chuck Palahniuk (or was it Katherine Dunn?) said "everyone looking to make a new life migrates west," and that other cities on the west coast are too expensive, so the "fugitives and refugees" end up here. We're all folks who, for some reason or another, couldn't make it anywhere else. That may sound like a terrible thing, but it's what makes this town so awesome.

So no, nowhere else. I had a great time in Munich, Paris is beautiful, and you can't beat Belgian beer, but I'm now a creature of this town and I can't see myself making a life elsewhere.
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Excellent -- I'm enjoying the opportunity to learn more about you. A few questions:

- What is a "plural" relationship? (Are we in the polyamory zone here?)

- To what extent have you been involved in political/activist efforts, and, if any, what were/are they?

- What are some of your best gaming memories? Worst?

- What do you do professionally? What would you ideally be doing professionally?

- What political positions do you find so ludicrous that it causes you to think less of anyone who holds them?

- What's (A) your religious background, (B) your current religious thinking, and the path that brought you from A to B?

Thanks!
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Tobias Strobe
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bjlillo wrote:
What sort of beers are you a fan of?


Awesome question. I'll answer with a current top 10 (not in a specific order)

Tripel Karmaliet - Tripel (Bosteels)
The Abyss - Imperial Stout (Deschutes)
Fred - Barleywine (Hair of the Dog)
Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale - Belgian Strong (Hitachino)
Blue Heron (my old standby) - American Pale (Bridgeport)
Bridgeport IPA
Maredsous 10 - Tripel (Duvel)
Brooklyner-Schneider Hopfen-Weisse - Weizenbock
Old Rasputin - Imperial Stout (North Coast)
African Amber - Red Ale (Mack and Jack's)

What's yours?
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Tobias Strobe
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AT 22 wrote:
-The website linked in your profile looks interesting, is it something you're involved in? Can you tell us more about it?


That's my husband's ollllllld art site. We started working on an independent PC role playing game a few years back, and abandoned it when our engineer decided to do something else with his life and I subsequently discovered that I'm a terrible coder. Fail.

Thus, we funneled our energy into a board game project. Much like our last project, what seemed so simple at the beginning gradually revealed itself to be rather ambitious. Three boards, eighty-eight character portraits, and a whole lotta boring testing later, we're actually almost ready to publish this S.O.B. and see if anyone will buy it.

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-Have you ever kissed a woman?


Never. I live a life bereft of human contact.



Just foolin'. Yeah, I'm bisexual, leaning gay. My long-term relationship involves a dude and a real knockout of a girlfriend. We all live together in an otherwise mundane/stable relationship that has persisted for many years. It sounds much stranger than it actually is.
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Tobias Strobe
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corross wrote:

- What is a "plural" relationship? (Are we in the polyamory zone here?)


Closed, long-term poly, yeah.

Quote:
- To what extent have you been involved in political/activist efforts, and, if any, what were/are they?


Hmm, I'm not really the activist type. I mostly just send money to organizations and people that I agree with. I support organized labor, sent some cash to Obama, and contributed to the website ReligousTolerance.org.

Oh, I also argue on the internet.

Quote:
- What are some of your best gaming memories? Worst?


Hmm... well, there was this one great game of the (pretty bad) CCG "Rage". My best friend and I bought a couple starters before driving up for a vacation at a cabin he owns in eastern Washington. This joint was on a lake and damn far from anything other that hillbillies and mosquitoes. We opened the boxes after we arrived and spent some of the day trying to figure out this ludicrous game. When evening came we sat at a picnic table next to the lake, taking an electric lantern and the cards out with a crate of bad beer.

We sat out there for hours, playing an unbalanced and terminally silly game as the sun set. We were surrounded by the sounds of crickets and bats as we played game after game, providing narrative for our plays and laughing hysterically. That's the kind of moment you can only get with a face-to-face tabletop game.

There aren't too many bad memories that include games. Sure, I fought about measurements in Warhammer like any other minis player, but it rarely got too nasty. I suffered through a six hour Talisman game once (well, sort of. I did take a nap after getting killed), but that wasn't really a bad experience as much as it was an illuminating one.

Quote:
- What do you do professionally? What would you ideally be doing professionally?


I'm a nurses' assistant who works with the chronically mentally ill. Ideally, I'd be doing this and selling the occasional board game on the side... I'll tell you how that works out in a year or so.

Quote:
- What political positions do you find so ludicrous that it causes you to think less of anyone who holds them?


Other than the obviously abhorrent ones (overt racism, true theocracy, etc.), I'd say it'd be the abolition of the income tax. It's so unrealistic that I just can't take anyone seriously who believes it would work.

Additionally, people who take entertainers like Glenn Beck seriously cause me to raise an eyebrow in disbelief.

Quote:
- What's (A) your religious background, (B) your current religious thinking, and the path that brought you from A to B?


Well, I was raised Catholic in a liberal household. I'm no longer Catholic, but I'm not one of those ex-Catholics who has a load of hate for the church or its teachings. It just wasn't for me.

I studied religion in my early 20s, trying to find something that would appeal to my heart and meet the rational standard I set. For a few years I thought I was an Advaita Vedanta Hindu, which really appealed to my Soren Kierkegaard lovin' theistic existentialist self. It turned out that my heart wasn't in it, but I couldn't figure out why because it all seemed so damn smart, and if I was going to be religious, I wasn't gonna be in one of those nutty and superstitious ones (OR SO I THOUGHT -foreshadowing-).

After some time in "undecided mode", I followed a random link to some essays by a dude named Philip Carr-Gomm. He was associated with neo-druidry (leader of the Order of Bards, Ovates, and Druids), so I sorta dismissed him as a kook who makes up stories about fairies and listened to a lotta Jethro Tull. I read his stuff anyway, but my prejudices didn't allow me to comprehend his positions, even though he never once mentioned phony magic powers or Tull.

Years later I had a personal crisis, and I started thinking about the "kook" and what he wrote, so I went back and gave it another read, and it all clicked. Despite my desire to be associated with a religion free of goofy mumbo-jumbo, Druidry grabbed me and sounded more like truth than anything I had tried to convince myself that I believed. I'm still not buying any of the silly stuff that some of my fellow druids are into, but the underlying philosophy of OBOD makes so much sense to me that I couldn't help but join the organization.

I don't often mention my religion because when I argue with militant atheists online, I want them to think I'm Christian. My fringe, powerless, religion often gets an undeserved pass when faith is getting trashed, and that bugs me to no end.
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Congrats on making into the elite of the RSP- or at least, the category of "I've annoyed enough people so that people actually pay attention to me now and again."



Back to history, as I'm sure that eventually someone else will pick up on the Poly stuff. *LOL*

Santayana- Full of crap or not? Here's YOUR chance to upstage Bagpipe Dan if you're able to include a reference to Caesar's Commentaries in your answer.....

To what extent can we 'know' about the past? Or is history merely the creation of narratives that we use to fight ongoing political battles in the present? Please refer to your previous answer with Santayana in this.

Finally- Are you aware that an Austin band, "The Absence of Romance" has an interesting CD 'tone poem' on the Peloponesian War entitled (not very orginally) "Athens v Sparta" The History of the Peolponesian War"? I've seen them live here in Austin and they've got a whacky sort of Alan Parson's Project jive to them- but doing the Classics instead of about Robots.

For more info, see www.athensvsparta.com

Darilian
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Ilthuain wrote:
My long-term relationship involves a dude and a real knockout of a girlfriend.


You have referred to your "husband" on more than one occasion. This is the first I've heard of a woman in the mix, and you refer to her as "a girlfriend".

I'm curious -- is this random happenstance, that you refer to "my husband" and "a girlfriend"? Does it mean more, either in terms of your preference of self-presentation or otherwise?

Quote:
It sounds much stranger than it actually is.


I believe you.
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Tobias Strobe
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Darilian wrote:
Congrats on making into the elite of the RSP- or at least, the category of "I've annoyed enough people so that people actually pay attention to me now and again."


It feels like I won the Superbowl of Irritating People on the Internet (as it Relates to Board Games).

Quote:
Santayana- Full of crap or not? Here's YOUR chance to upstage Bagpipe Dan if you're able to include a reference to Caesar's Commentaries in your answer.....


I wouldn't go so far as to say he's "full of crap", but I do believe that history is merely a record of human experience and human experience is filled with so many variables, some of which are genuinely new, that patterns we see are largely of our own invention.

History is interesting, but it's still a just an educated guess at the truth. Thankfully, this elusive truth isn't terribly important, but how we attempt to get to it is.

(Sorry for being unable to tie in the Commentaries. I've been out of school too long to believably force a reference)

Quote:
To what extent can we 'know' about the past? Or is history merely the creation of narratives that we use to fight ongoing political battles in the present? Please refer to your previous answer with Santayana in this.


Heh... sure, professor. ;-)

We don't 'know', but we can make a fairly accurate guess, depending on which history we're talking about. Different eras and different sources are afforded different academic weight based on their verifiability and the validity of challenges. For example, I don't -know- that the battle of Amphipolis took place in 422 BCE, but elements of Thucydides have been a verified (or rather, as verified as we can manage), and there have been no challenges to his record that are more credible. Therefore, we assume that Thucydides is accurate because we have no better source and there is no reason to disbelieve it.

As for the second part... yes, some "history" should be taken more seriously than others. We look at the author, analyze the motive behind the thesis, and then determine if the record should be accepted as likely fact or likely bullshit. The bullshit can make for good reading, and sometimes will tell you more about an era than an accurate record, so it can all be valuable.

Quote:
Finally- Are you aware that an Austin band, "The Absence of Romance" has an interesting CD 'tone poem' on the Peloponesian War entitled (not very orginally) "Athens v Sparta" The History of the Peolponesian War"? I've seen them live here in Austin and they've got a whacky sort of Alan Parson's Project jive to them- but doing the Classics instead of about Robots.


Very cool. Not my kind of music, but admirable.

If they could be convinced to change their sound to Stoner/Doom, I'd be one of their biggest fans. ;-)
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Tobias Strobe
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corross wrote:

You have referred to your "husband" on more than one occasion. This is the first I've heard of a woman in the mix, and you refer to her as "a girlfriend".

I'm curious -- is this random happenstance, that you refer to "my husband" and "a girlfriend"? Does it mean more, either in terms of your preference of self-presentation or otherwise?


My husband and I were married in 2000, and we got together with the girlfriend in '04. I can see how this could be confusing.
 
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Cavedog_pdx wrote:
Have we met?


I don't think so, but maybe.
 
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Re: Caesar's Commentaries.....

COME ON GUYS!!!

Caesar goes to Gaul, and conquers a people with no real beef with Rome, in order to protect his position in the Senate (basically, he wanted a Proconsular position so that he would be immune from Prosecution after his controversial term as Consul)?? An entire story that sets up the battle of defining Caesar as either doing what was 'necessary' or cynically using war as a tool not just Rome's aggrandisement, but his own personal wealth and power???

And NO ONE makes the obvious link to compare/contrast this with Gulf War II? I mean, Bagpipe Dan is kinda 'righty', but you, Tobias, you're a liberal hippy from PORTLAND!!!!!

I expected better from the RSP....*sniff*

*LOL*

Next time, I'll stick to simple one from Thucydides, like the Melian Dialogue.

Darilian
(And y'all call yourselves CLASSICISTS.....*LOL* *Tongue firmly in cheek*)
 
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Darilian wrote:


Next time, I'll stick to simple one from Thucydides, like the Melian Dialogue.

As a Belgian I feel for the poor Melians
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Nate Sandall
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Ilthuain wrote:
Cavedog_pdx wrote:
Have we met?


I don't think so, but maybe.


Is Tobias your real name? Is it also the one you use to introduce yourself?
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Congrats!
 
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Ilthuain wrote:
Despite my desire to be associated with a religion free of goofy mumbo-jumbo, Druidry grabbed me and sounded more like truth than anything I had tried to convince myself that I believed. I'm still not buying any of the silly stuff that some of my fellow druids are into, but the underlying philosophy of OBOD makes so much sense to me that I couldn't help but join the organization.


Great, just what we need: a Druish princess!

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I don't often mention my religion because when I argue with militant atheists online, I want them to think I'm Christian. My fringe, powerless, religion often gets an undeserved pass when faith is getting trashed, and that bugs me to no end.


Interesting. Why does it bug you?

Quote:
Other than the obviously abhorrent ones (overt racism, true theocracy, etc.), I'd say it'd be the abolition of the income tax. It's so unrealistic that I just can't take anyone seriously who believes it would work.


Would it have any effect on your opinion if I pointed out that the first true income taxes in the Western world began in Britain as a temporary measure during the Napoleonic Wars? And that, given that governments before then had not directly taxed income and, further, that it was intended as a temporary measure, there is historical precedent for governments operating without them, and therefore the people who argue for its abolition do so from an historical basis?

I'm not going to advance an opinion on the matter, I just think it's an interesting historical tidbit and enjoy seeing what people make of it. =)

-

If you will permit me a question steeped in additional frivolity (but of a different sort): If you could witness one event in history (let us assume, here, you are a passive, essentially non-existent observer that cannot alter or in any way impact it), what would it be?
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Daniel Edwards
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1. Whats the anti-gay marriage argument that annoys you the most?

2. Is there a box for "Druid" in the census?

3. Whats a worse quality in a politician: incompetence or dishonesty (falling short of corruption).
 
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