Pope Francis Describes Internet as "A Gift From God"

irishda

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Vigormortis said:
irishda said:
Considering the non-measurable qualities of inspiration and creativity, whose to say it's not?
Because the default position is to not believe it is so until evidence is shown to prove that it is.
Posits are not made by scientists? Are theories not ideas that cannot be definitively proven? Belief may be a strong word, but it is certainly an idea at the least that precedes any theory, an idea that maybe something works a certain way. Then the experiments are made to test it.
 

Vigormortis

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irishda said:
Posits are not made by scientists? Are theories not ideas that cannot be definitively proven? Belief may be a strong word, but it is certainly an idea at the least that precedes any theory, an idea that maybe something works a certain way. Then the experiments are made to test it.
Yes, but those "ideas" are not accepted as true.

When a scientist posits a hypothesis, they may think, or even believe, what they're positing is true. However, they nor the rest of the scientific field will accept that it is true until it is proven to be so.

You're welcome to claim any idea you want, but the default position is to not accept the claim as true until evidence is provided backing the claim.

Besides, you don't prove a negative. You ask someone, for examlpe, to prove bigfoot exists, not to prove he doesn't exist.

Also, I never brought this up in my previous post, but how can you claim creativity and inspiration are immeasurable? Since they are actions of the mind, and the mind is a physical entity whose electrochemical responses can be measured, it stands to reason that with enough understanding of how the brain works we could conceivably measure such things.
 

Animyr

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furai47 said:
From those (definitions), I think we can draw that deism not only has a completely different "power structure" for lack of a better term, but also that theism has extra stuff on top of just creating the world and existing in the supernatural as is the case with deism.
I think I?ve preemptively responded to every point you brought up, and will not do so again this time. With your new comments in mind, please reread my previous posts. But I?ll highlight this:

Theism is defined as such: Belief in the existence of a god or gods, especially belief in a personal God as creator and ruler of the world.

Notice how the first part is just as I said it was, and the "especially" part or any other more specific definition is specific to Abrahamic monotheism, from which the big three derive? I already discussed how the original, broader meaning can become tied to a more specific meaning for convenience, just as the word ?god? itself has.

furai47 said:
"schnippen schnappen something about x" is my version of saying "snip some words to identify what I'm responding to" and I'm quite fond of it.
Fine, but since I can't read tone of voice over the internet, it makes you sound rather smug and flippant. Just so you know. Substituting " something about X" for my actual words is also very similar to inserting "blah blah blah" which makes you sound even more so.

furai47 said:
The reason the word "evolution" in science circles means change of characteristics over time in a given population is because almost everyone who uses it uses it to mean exactly that.
Irrelevant to my point. Suppose, for instance, that everyone outside high-end science labs thought that evolution meant pokemon-style transformation, and then scoffed at evolutionary biologists on the basis of that understanding. ?What, they think animals just turned into new animals? Preposterous! Why are we teaching this trash in schools?? What would those who understand evolution and its original and/or true meaning do? Would they make a new word to replace the one they lost to the public? Would they try to publically clarify on or reclaim the word ?evolution?? This leads back to the point in my previous post, which I don't think you really addressed.

furai47 said:
Popular votes can still change what the word is used to denote
Since you?re all over the idea that words are defined by popular vote and there?s nothing we can do, I find it odd that you object to Vigor giving his vote. Maybe you objected to the fact that he declared that that?s what the word means full stop, but how many meanings of words do you think changed from people politely suggesting to others to change the way they use the word (not saying that?s never happened mind), and simply saying that that?s what the word meant until it caught on, as Vigor was arguably trying to do?

furai47 said:
1)you think agnosticism does not mean a person is unsure of the existence of a god/gods; which it most certainly can and has done so for anywhere between 2500 and 3000 years now2)you think atheism does not mean a person believes that a god/gods do not exist which again, it most certainly can3)you think you can categorise upwards of 7 billion people into 4 neat boxes when it comes to religious beliefs4)you think it's religious indoctrination that has turned atheism into a "bad word" and not tribalism, something universal to the human species (a minor complaint)
1. It means (at least according to Vigor and my own experiences) someone who does not claim to know the answer to the question of the existence of god. This is very close to the colloquial meaning (that is, simple uncertainty) and of course anyone who is agnostic in the colloquial sense is also agnostic in the etymological sense of the word by necessity (because the etymological sense is broader). But the colloquial definition of agnosticism does not distinguish between knowledge and belief, which I why I think the etymological definition is more useful.
2. To clarify for everyone, it does not NECESSARILY mean that. Of course anyone who believes there is no gods is an atheist, but not all atheists believe there is no god. The point is that people take the word atheism to be a more specific, confident stance then it actually is.
3. I don?t know what Vigor thinks of them, but I would never claim that the four boxes are neat. They?re rough classifications which distinguish between knowledge and belief, which are important distinctions to make.
4. Is religion not a sort of tribe (as is nationalism, sports teams, and everyone who liked the ME3 ending), in the social and psychological sense?

furai47 said:
deriving what words mean in modern times from use in the past is still not particularly smart.
If the categories had been ?certain believer, uncertain believer, certain unbeliever, uncertain unbeliever? would that satisfy you?

You seem to be implying that since we decided that we were, say, and atheist, found out what the etymological roots of the word were, and then changed our position to be loyal to those roots. Untrue. Our stance is a certain stance. As it happens, the word Atheism is not merely associated with those of my stance, but the exact etymological roots of the word mirror our exact stance on the issue. Why, how convenient. Why not use it? Sure seems to be the right word.

What is more, Vigors definitions of words are (roughly) the definitions I've seen used by almost every major atheist figure or atheistic organization, as well as both atheists and theists in academic circles. Again, it is not a mere personal definition. It is the type of classification favored, or at least sometimes used, by ?experts.? Not saying that they can?t be slowly outvoted by the people at large, mind you.

furai47 said:
When today you ask a person if they're religious and they tell you they're agnostic, it might just be because they're using the word to mean "I don't believe in god"; and believe it or not, most any definition will support them on that.
Then they would be both atheist and agnostic. Atheists (or nonbelievers, if you?d prefer) come in varying degrees of certainty(as to believers), and it?s useful to distinguish between the various kinds. The four categories thing does this, whatever label you give them.
 

SuperScrub

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I guess the Catholic Church realized if it wants to stay in business in a day and age where information on anything is available to anyone. And in an age where people are moving away from the biblical ages, you got to roll with the new technology and worldview of what modern people think. If this guy was in the holy chair when I was 12 I would still be a Catholic. Now if only he can reveal the names of everyone of his priests caught in a sex scandal and I'll stop thinking about mean things about the Catholic Church.
 

Neonit

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Another miracle manufactured by humans.

He means well (or at least acts this way), but i cannot get rid of the sensation that anyone or anything would change, in face of impending doom.

If he truly tries to change the church in any, however small way - i wish him luck.

But honestly? People who are already in palaces, sitting on golden thrones... in my opinion they change only when the mob is storming their castle. And then its too late. I think that's the problem of the church.
"We were KINGS for hundreds of years, why should WE change?!"
 

irishda

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Vigormortis said:
irishda said:
Posits are not made by scientists? Are theories not ideas that cannot be definitively proven? Belief may be a strong word, but it is certainly an idea at the least that precedes any theory, an idea that maybe something works a certain way. Then the experiments are made to test it.
Yes, but those "ideas" are not accepted as true.

When a scientist posits a hypothesis, they may think, or even believe, what they're positing is true. However, they nor the rest of the scientific field will accept that it is true until it is proven to be so.

You're welcome to claim any idea you want, but the default position is to not accept the claim as true until evidence is provided backing the claim.

Besides, you don't prove a negative. You ask someone, for examlpe, to prove bigfoot exists, not to prove he doesn't exist.

Also, I never brought this up in my previous post, but how can you claim creativity and inspiration are immeasurable? Since they are actions of the mind, and the mind is a physical entity whose electrochemical responses can be measured, it stands to reason that with enough understanding of how the brain works we could conceivably measure such things.
A lot of science is built upon theories, which, by definition, are not proven, yet the scientific community functions as though they are. Hell, science still doesn't understand how freakin' gravity works. I'm not trying to say that scientists cling to a belief as strongly as religion, but, historically, scientists have proven more than stubborn in letting older or even disproven theories/"facts" go. People like to act like science ONLY operates on sound, fundamental data, but the truth is the field of scientists is just as populated with idiots as any other field.

As per creativity, you need not even examine the method of creation to understand it's immeasurable. Since the output of any creative work is subjective, how do you quantify what cannot be agreed upon? For instance, three scientists observe as a man pours water into a measuring glass. To one scientist, there is 15 mL; another sees 10mL, and the third sees 50 mL. What is the measurement? Arguably, one might be able to identify a specific chemical response that correlates what amount someone would see in the glass, therefore enabling someone to categorize people into groups based on the amount of liquid seen. But that still doesn't present an objective measurement.

Secondly, when it comes to the brain, I've often wondered, are our emotions really the product of chemical reactions? Or do the chemical reactions occur because of our emotions? If a person is sad, neurology would say it is because a specific chemical is present in the brain making the person sad. Since a chemical compound is introduced, would it not stand to reason then that no other chemical would be able to affect the brain? If we are controlled by chemicals, how then do we override the current chemical? If it is random, then why do certain activities make people happy? If the current chemical can "run out" and therefore allow a new one to be introduced, wouldn't certain medical disorders like depression be curable simply by waiting?
 

kalakashi

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Strident atheists such as myself find this type of news irritating because it is not news-worthy. To us, there is a man who believes in god saying that the internet is a good thing, and for some reason, this is seen as cause for writing out an article and spreading the news. Who cares if the pope likes the internet? To us, it is once again just a regular person getting much more attention and praise than they deserve, simply because he also has stupid beliefs.
 

Evil Smurf

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Geth Reich (Yakob) said:
I don't think the Lord would approve much of the things I've been looking at online....
I don't know, God's into gangbang porn. He calls it "The Holy Trinity."
 

Dragonlayer

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Evil Smurf said:
Geth Reich (Yakob) said:
I don't think the Lord would approve much of the things I've been looking at online....
I don't know, God's into gangbang porn. He calls it "The Holy Trinity."
I don't know, actual Christian pornography would probably be very bland: SEE XXX VIRGINS BECOME MOTHERS WITH NO INTERCOURSE XXX THESE GIRLS WILL GET DOWN ON THEIR KNEES AND PRAY FOR YOUR SALVATION!
 

Madman123456

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The Lord doesn't like a great many things. For example, us humans in general. If we behave well enough and regret all the occasions when it was impossible to follow his commands then maybe, just maybe you might possibly see an ending to the eternal torment he laid upon us when he kicked us out of paradise.

Religious lore can be weird sometimes. I suspect many alien species in fiction have a religion or sometimes several because it is so easy to make one up, you can write all sorts of bullshit and it is next to impossible to fail.


Regarding this pope: it will never cease to amaze me how easily people are swayed.
True, this might just be a pope that is slightly less evil than most of his predecessors but i will continue to cast a suspiscious eye on him and his cult.
"A gift from God!"? Really? After centuries of censorship and false interpretation of the holy word, which seems like it was written as nebulous as possible, after countless people have misused religion to further their own agenda which might have been their own overly zealous beliefs, god gives us an instrument which can be used to tell the truth to people.
Or rather, tell so very many lies that at least one of them will be closer to the truth then the bible ever came by sheer random chance.

Well, god, thanks for reddit.
 

C14N

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I've seen a lot of people complaining about this saying that the Pope is trying to give God credit for something "science" has brought us, as if "science" is a competing organisation that is totally mutually exclusive to religion. Besides the fact that that is pretty absurd and the Catholic Church is actually pretty supportive of scientific research (except the stem cell stuff), that's not what he's saying at all.

He's just encouraging members to embrace technology, not fear it. He's not saying God just gave this to us pre-built and all the brilliant people who have worked to make it sat there twiddling their thumbs.

"Oh, the pope said something we hip young cool kids all knew anyway, whoop de doo"

This completely misses the point. As a frequent internet user, it might surprise you to know that there are a LOT of people who generally try to keep away from stuff like this. There are reports and "opinion pieces" on places like The Daily Mail and Fox News telling many conservative Christians that these pieces of technology are harmful and you should try to keep your kids away from them. Statements like this will make a big difference because a figure like the pope has a lot of influence over people like this. Even from a purely secular standpoint, if it results in more people using the internet then you'll have more money going into this stuff which, in theory will create more tech jobs and improve the services you use.

You're allowed to completely disagree with the core beliefs of a group and still just be glad that their worldview is lining up a little more closely with yours instead of taking a big shit on it for trying. As much as you might dislike the Catholic Church, you aren't going to badmouth them out of existence so just cheer up hope they keep moving in a more positive direction.
 

C14N

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kalakashi said:
Strident atheists such as myself find this type of news irritating because it is not news-worthy. To us, there is a man who believes in god saying that the internet is a good thing, and for some reason, this is seen as cause for writing out an article and spreading the news. Who cares if the pope likes the internet? To us, it is once again just a regular person getting much more attention and praise than they deserve, simply because he also has stupid beliefs.
Because the news isn't tailored specifically to you? This person is a leader to a huge number of people, he has some pretty big political muscle. He's not just some guy who believes in God. The fact that it doesn't affect you personally doesn't mean nobody should ever report it. This is kind of like saying "I'm not Syrian and I never plan to go to Syria, why does the news keep reporting on Syria when my friends and I don't care about Syria?"
 

Vigormortis

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irishda said:
A lot of science is built upon theories, which, by definition, are not proven, yet the scientific community functions as though they are. Hell, science still doesn't understand how freakin' gravity works. I'm not trying to say that scientists cling to a belief as strongly as religion, but, historically, scientists have proven more than stubborn in letting older or even disproven theories/"facts" go. People like to act like science ONLY operates on sound, fundamental data, but the truth is the field of scientists is just as populated with idiots as any other field.
First: science never claims absolute certainty. Nor does it claim absolute knowledge. As a great comedian once said, "Of course science doesn't have all the answers. If it did it'd stop." And just because it doesn't have the answer now; or perhaps even the wrong one; doesn't mean it won't have the right one in the future. Science is self-correcting. That's the point. It's about finding the best answer for something in the universe with the data we have available. As new data arises our definitions and understandings change with them.

Besides, just because science doesn't have the answer, it doesn't mean someone gets to slap any nonsensical explanation they want into that void. They don't get to say, "Well I don't know, therefore God did it."

God of the gaps, as it is known. Or more specifically, an argument from ignorance.

Secondly: science is a human endeavor. As a result, it is only as infallible as the people performing it. And as we both know, people make mistakes. However, science is, once again, self-correcting. This is why there is a strict vetting and peer-review process for every new hypothesis that comes along.

Thirdly: your evidence that science is a "broken field" is a Cracked.com article? A site that lives and breaths satirical editorials?

Most of the "egregious issues" brought up in the piece pertain to industries outside of scientific study; namely the pharmaceutical industries. The "bullshit" pointed out is a result of people misusing science, not science being fundamentally flawed.

As the end of the article states: "Just to be clear: It's not that you should suddenly stop trusting science in general -- without science it would be impossible to distinguish charlatans from people who have actual wizard powers. But there's a big difference between accepting scientific consensus and just blindly believing everything said by a guy in a white lab coat."

As per creativity, you need not even examine the method of creation to understand it's immeasurable. Since the output of any creative work is subjective, how do you quantify what cannot be agreed upon? For instance, three scientists observe as a man pours water into a measuring glass. To one scientist, there is 15 mL; another sees 10mL, and the third sees 50 mL. What is the measurement? Arguably, one might be able to identify a specific chemical response that correlates what amount someone would see in the glass, therefore enabling someone to categorize people into groups based on the amount of liquid seen. But that still doesn't present an objective measurement.
The output of a creative endeavor is irrelevant to the process involved. The point of contention was whether it was possible to measure the electrochemical processes involved in creativity. A point that I still affirm is entirely measurable, if not yet decipherable.

Also, your example is ridiculous. For one, their being scientists is irrelevant to the conclusion of the example. For another, if those three "Scientists" were really scientists they'd actually measure how much liquid was in the glass, not just take a wild guess. And lastly, the subjective interpretation of the electrochemical responses is irrelevant to the question. The key is whether the responses can be measured.

Secondly, when it comes to the brain, I've often wondered, are our emotions really the product of chemical reactions? Or do the chemical reactions occur because of our emotions?
You still have the issue of cause-and-effect. Even if "emotions" caused the electrochemical reactions in the brain (which they don't), you still haven't addressed what caused the emotional responses. Not to mention what the purpose of the electrochemical reactions are if emotions occur before they do.

You need a step in between "My friend gave me a hug" and "It made me happy".

If a person is sad, neurology would say it is because a specific chemical is present in the brain making the person sad.
It would say the person is sad because of a combination of neuro-chemicals, external stimuli, and specific neurological reactions to the presence of both.

Since a chemical compound is introduced, would it not stand to reason then that no other chemical would be able to affect the brain?
Chemical mixtures exist everywhere. They are an integral part of everyday life. Why would the brain be an exception?

If we are controlled by chemicals,
We are chemicals. You don't need "controlled by" in there.

...how then do we override the current chemical?
Who says we do? Can you provide any proof of this claim?

If it is random, then why do certain activities make people happy?
Random is a loaded word. Especially in this sense.

And, even if these electrochemical reactions were random (which they technically aren't as they often rely on external stimuli), then why would that preclude the possibility of someone finding happiness in certain activities?

If the current chemical can "run out" and therefore allow a new one to be introduced, wouldn't certain medical disorders like depression be curable simply by waiting?
Fallacious. Again, emotions are a combination of chemicals in the brain, external or internal stimuli, and the specific electrochemical reactions within the brain to these two factors.

The body continually reproduces many of the chemicals present in the brain. Of course they can run out, but the body replenishes them over time. Usually.

However, this is not always the case. In many instances, mental disorders and diseases stem from a lack or overabundance of certain chemicals in the brain. In others, these disorders are caused by the brain negatively reacting to certain chemicals; usually from some malformed structure within the brain itself.

It's clear you have a lot of questions about neurochemistry and the human mind itself. Some I likely can't address as, clearly, I am no expert. However, there is a wealth of vetted, peer-reviewed, scientific literature out there on the topic. It make take some time but consider rummaging through it.

You never know, you could find it to be incredibly stimulating. You may even become the next great neuroscientist[footnote]Honestly said without a single hint of sarcasm.[/footnote]. ;)
 

Vigormortis

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Animyr said:
Just wanted to say, "Thank you", again.

I grew weary of some of the arguments in this thread. Notably those rife with double standards.

I have little interest in arguing over something when the primary counter-argument is predicated on 'ad populum'.
 

kalakashi

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C14N said:
Because the news isn't tailored specifically to you? This person is a leader to a huge number of people, he has some pretty big political muscle. He's not just some guy who believes in God. The fact that it doesn't affect you personally doesn't mean nobody should ever report it. This is kind of like saying "I'm not Syrian and I never plan to go to Syria, why does the news keep reporting on Syria when my friends and I don't care about Syria?"
Those are two very obviously different things. The pope saying the internet isn't all bad is not news. The people who care about what the pope says will hear him say it through whatever media outlet he chooses, and the people who don't care will not care. It is an unimportant article, and uninteresting; it has no consequence beside informing the reader of the pope's feelings about the internet.
In Syria we have human suffering and refugees seeking asylum, events that are affecting people. Nobody is enlightened or enriched by the pope article.

As I say, followers of the pope will surely find his message and do what they will with it, but in the rest of society, it's put out there as if to say this guy is worth listening to, and we (strident/militant/whatever atheists) would sooner have him and his ilk forgotten about entirely. The longer people are listening to him, the longer he has to spread word about the sin of homosexuality, that condoms are a last resort against AIDS and that abortions should be illegal.
 

C14N

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kalakashi said:
C14N said:
Because the news isn't tailored specifically to you? This person is a leader to a huge number of people, he has some pretty big political muscle. He's not just some guy who believes in God. The fact that it doesn't affect you personally doesn't mean nobody should ever report it. This is kind of like saying "I'm not Syrian and I never plan to go to Syria, why does the news keep reporting on Syria when my friends and I don't care about Syria?"
Those are two very obviously different things. The pope saying the internet isn't all bad is not news. The people who care about what the pope says will hear him say it through whatever media outlet he chooses, and the people who don't care will not care. It is an unimportant article, and uninteresting; it has no consequence beside informing the reader of the pope's feelings about the internet.
In Syria we have human suffering and refugees seeking asylum, events that are affecting people. Nobody is enlightened or enriched by the pope article.

As I say, followers of the pope will surely find his message and do what they will with it, but in the rest of society, it's put out there as if to say this guy is worth listening to, and we (strident/militant/whatever atheists) would sooner have him and his ilk forgotten about entirely. The longer people are listening to him, the longer he has to spread word about the sin of homosexuality, that condoms are a last resort against AIDS and that abortions should be illegal.
Almost everything you said is so broad it could just as easily have been applied to Syria.

"The people who care about the government oppression in Syria will hear it through whatever media outlet the rebels choose, and the people who don't care will not care. It is an unimportant article, and uninteresting; it has no consequence beside informing the reader of what is happening in a far away country that has almost no trade or diplomatic relations with this one. Nobody is enlightened or enriched by the Syrian article. As I say, followers of the Syrian conflict will surely find this message and do what they will with it, but in the rest of society, it's put out there as if to say these rebels are worth listening to, and we (pro-Assad/apathetic/whatever) would sooner have them and their ilk forgotten about entirely."

The people who care hear about what the pope is doing in the news because that's the expected outlet for the affairs and statements of world leaders. Besides that is the fact that many people who are interested aren't checking the Vatican webpage every day for updates, many of them probably won't even be Catholic, especially with this pope.

I'm sure that you don't want to hear from people that hold opinions contrary to your own, but many people hold those opinions and do actually want to hear about people in power who agree with them. I greatly doubt that if the article was about something critical that Richard Dawkins said about religion that you would have any of these qualms, despite the fact that a far larger proportion of the population care about what the pope says.
 

RandV80

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Only thing that could have made his message better is if in the spirit of things he said the internet is a gift from Ceiling Cat!

 

NSGrendel

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I really wish I could post something here, but given the bans I've seen being handed out over the last few days, I can only assume that the boards are becoming Disney compliant.

Catholic church, internet, distribution of images featuring unwilling subjects. Please feel free to connect the dots.
 

Pebkio

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Nov 9, 2009
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You know what... I was all set to go: "You know what... you're right! All that hard work by thoundsands of people certaintly helped a tiny bit but all the credit goes to your imaginary friend!"

But I kinda like this Pope so I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt.

He fully knows that science and dedication and intelligence and cooperation are the things from which the Internet was gifted, but he's using his Religion to get his followers to stop acting backwards. Which bring me to my second point... which is that I find that confusing... because I wasn't aware that the internet was shunned by many Christian communities. In fact:
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/issues/issue_205/6149-Missionaries-of-the-Digital-Age
And that was over four years ago.

As for the third point... as I'm sure so many people have pointed out - 4chanLUEyoutubePortalofevilpornsitesandSomethingawful.
Dot Com.
 

Johnny Novgorod

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Bergoglio can't fool me. I've been on his case since before he took over from Pope Palpatine. I know he's as backward as that guy was, he just knows how to handle himself better in public.