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Everything posted by GernBlansten

  1. At the height of the space race, American engineers were faced with a daunting task. Give astronauts a device that will allow them to take notes in zero gravity. Obviously, there would be tasks that would require an astronaut to log a message or reading for later use. Pen technology at the time was all based on gravity. Pens required the pull of gravity to deliver ink down the tube to the roller. Fountain pens would be a huge mess. So NASA spent millions developing a delivery system that would work without the pull of gravity. The zero G pen. You could write upside down! A fascinating
  2. Ed, You got a problem with clean feet? I happen to like my feet clean. In fact, I might just use one those foot baths if I came across one. Come to think about it, I think everyone would do better if we all washed our feet more frequently. Sure help the foot odor problem in airplanes when people slip off their shoes eh? Or getting foot fungus at the gym. I remember at Philmont, hiking into Fish Camp and taking off my boots and washing my socks and feet in the cool stream. Pure heaven. Maybe the Muslims are onto something us Westerners just are missing. As for the constituti
  3. We have made great advances due to the forcing of innovation that the manned space program has required. I'm a big fan of scientific research and unmanned space flight is uber cool and necessary to advance our understanding of the universe. But it lacks human drama. Watching a bunch of nerds in a control room celebrate the landing of a Mars rover just doesn't do it for us. Putting men in mortal danger always solicits great advances. Wars are incredible motivations to develop new drugs, weapons and life saving procedures. I bet, if you weighed the advances in technology from WW2 f
  4. I'm in the space business. Obama turning the Orion into a life raft just gave me another year or two of work. What a joke. However, manned spaceflight is a folly. We were never destined for space. We simply cannot survive there and the possiblity of finding somewhere we can survive is way beyond our life spans. Sure it forces some technological advances that benefit our terrestrial lives. But its still a folly. We will never leave this planet permanently. We need to focus on this little ball of fuzz instead of playing Buck Rodgers. The same tech advances we get from
  5. I don't think you do understand, Ed. If the basins were for the exclusive use of the Muslims and paid for with public funds, yes, it would be an endorsement. But they aren't. Anyone can use them. Likewise, the government owning a BSA unit but restricting service to only religious people is an endorsement of religion. Right?
  6. Ed, the wash basins are not restricted. The BSA is. That is the difference and its very significant. I'm sorry you can't see that.
  7. Ed, would you care if the footbaths were exclusively restricted for people of Muslim faith? That is exactly what the BSA/public school charter creates. An exclusive use of a public service based on religious affiliation.
  8. I don't like the idea of public funds putting in foot baths for religious reasons, however they do not restrict their use. If use of the foot baths was restricted to only Muslim faithful, then the situation would be the same as a public entity owning a BSA unit.
  9. Beavah, Your comment about "Let's say, for example, that we're fightin' a war in a conservative Islamic nation, where homosexuality remains a religious taboo. " is just plain stupid. Let's say, for example, that we're fightin' a war in an overtly racist nation, where dark skin remains a taboo. Should we de-integrate the Army just to appease our enemy?
  10. Beavah, you are the one splitting hairs. The mission of the BSA is to serve the youth. Their own policies state they only serve hetero, God fearing youth. They will not serve athiest or homosexual youth. Period. How can a BSA unit be owned by a public entity and not serve all youth?
  11. Beavah, there is a clear distinction between an organization targeting its services to a specific population and excluding (barring) a specific population from taking advantage of those services. LGBT programs do target that community, however, they do not bar hetrosexuals from service. Example: You have a question about your gay brother, you can get advice a LGBT program. They will serve you, even though you are hetero. Women's clinics target their services to women, men are not barred from taking advantage of them. Example: you have a question about your wife's health and want
  12. My point is that I understand that discriminatory organizations take public money all the time. However, those organizations cannot discriminate in the same way in offering their services. The Savation Army takes public money to run shelters. They are discriminatory in their membership just like the BSA. But they don't only serve Christians. They must serve all the public with their public funds. How can a BSA unit be owned by a public school, but not allow athiest or gay students to be served?
  13. "At the time", Beavah, did the words in the contract that either party could terminate the contract with one years notice mean something different?
  14. Beavah-"Yah, where do yeh get that? Taxpayer money is spent on private organizations all the time, and on organizations that discriminate on a legal basis. If it weren't, we'd need to nationalize a lot more industries and services. That may be what some (maybe you?) want, but it ain't exactly consistent with our historical view of liberty. " Please enlighten us with a specific example where a discriminating organization is getting public funding that restricts its services to their discriminating policies. I really don't think you can.
  15. Beavah, As a member of the Bar, do you agree with the BSA stance not to release the Perversion Files to the plaintiff?
  16. Not necessarily Sherm. For the sake of argument, lets assume there is nothing about the perp in these files. But, the files reference other cases where the BSA was aware of an abuser and didn't do the right thing. That would be material in the plaintiff's case because it would demonstrate that they didn't take appropriate controls and the plaintiffs case is strengthened. But lets assume that neither is the case. That the perp wasn't tracked and there was nothing in those files that is material in this case. Why not release them to the plaintiff? Nobody but the plaintiff and his l
  17. Its pretty clear that these files are pertinent to the case. They could demonstrate whether or not the BSA used appropriate measures to protect him. If they did, the files will exonerate the BSA. If they show otherwise, the BSA may be liable for damages to this young man's life. The plaintiff requested the files in a lower court during discovery and were refused. It had to be escalated to the supreme court to finally get BSA to release them. The fact that the BSA fought so hard to not release the files to the plaintiff indicate to me that they will not exonerate them, and in fact wil
  18. Scoutfish, in this case, the plaintiff requested access to the files. The BSA refused. I don't know the plaintiffs intent, but I can assume it was to demonstrate that either the BSA had records of the abuser before the incident, or had demonstrated a lack of follow through with other known abusers. In either case, that information was pertinent to his case. Usually the court will seal these records to the parties in the case so that the content is not release to the public. That is not what this verdict was about. The BSA refused to turn over the files to the plaintiff and the supreme
  19. The problem to me isn't that the BSA maintained the Perversion Files, but that when faced with a complaint from a former youth member, they refused to release those files to that individual in a clear effort to protect themselves. It took a supreme court ruling to get the BSA to do the right thing. Perhaps we should require every BSA professional to take the Citz merit badges.
  20. Why would the BSA call these the Perversion Files if they were just internal files about some people? I'm thinking they will quickly settle this case out of court and clamp a secrecy clause on the settlement.
  21. Wouldn't that information be pertinent to the plaintiffs case? Even if they were just accusations? The judge and jury would decide if they were relevant. One side cannot withhold evidence. That's how the system works.
  22. The BSA called these files the Perversion Files internally. Not the press, the BSA did. A fellow claims he was sexually molested by a BSA leader 30 years ago and is suing the organization. He's already settled with the LDS church which gives his claims some credibility. In his lawsuit, he demands to see the Perversion Files to see if they support his case that the BSA knew about the abuser. BSA fights him and the case goes all the way to the Oregon Supreme Court where the BSA loses the battle. The files are released to him. Why on earth would the BSA not release the files to him?
  23. I think Merlyn evokes such a negative response from many of you because he is usually right and is not afraid to let you know it. If he were wrong, you'd just move on and not let it get under your skin.
  24. I think all of Merlyn's posts are on-topic. Yes, he is inflammatory, but at least he keeps it on topic. Just because you don't agree with him doesn't make him a troll.
  25. Beat the feet. That means long hikes with weight. 10+ miles. If you are able to carry weight for more than 10 miles without issues, you are ready for Philmont. Hiking poles are great, highly recommend. Especially for the old guys. It saves your knees. That little bit of extra balance when you step over that log or across that creek with a 60 lbs pack will keep you from tweaking your back, knee or ankle. Also helps cadence. And can be your dining fly and spare tent poles.
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