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The Gruen Transfer - The Pitch: Banning all ReligionFollow

#27 Sep 08 2011 at 1:54 PM Rating: Good
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LockeColeMA wrote:
Eske Esquire wrote:

They used to give us critical thinking design exercises like that in architecture studio. "Design a house without walls." "Design a city without people." Things like that.

Those actually sound pretty fun. I'd think a house without walls could be a silo or dome (by walls did you mean square walls? By house, could it include things like a boat or a dumpster?), and a city without people is really easy: termite mounds and underground superstructures.


I always liked them. The results were always interesting. The schools I attended skewed towards the artsy/academic side of things, so the professors always encouraged students to play with the definitions and break convention. They liked it when the exercise would, say, get you to question what defines a "wall" or "house".

The more engineer/math/science-oriented students often struggled with them. They had trouble separating themselves from self-imposed rigid definitions and boundaries. Those types of students work best with clearly defined requirements.

I remember one where our professor asked us to create a "balanced drawing." Most students created mirror images. Our prof brought up one that had a big circle on one side, and a tiny circle on the other side, and posited that it was balanced. Caused quite an uproar...one student in particular got pretty heated in denial. I ventured that the image was balanced in "level of interest"...that the two sides, one with its unusually big circle, and the other with its unusually small circle, where equally interesting, thus balancing the image. Got a lot of brownie points for that one.

Tough to put that on a resume, though. Smiley: grin

PS: I like your city answer. Not so sure about the silo/dome, though. Pretty sure those are walled, by any definition.
#28 Sep 08 2011 at 1:58 PM Rating: Excellent
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lolgaxe wrote:
My wife told me about a billboard in the Lincoln tunnel last year. Something about the three Wise Men and the manger scene, and the caption on it was something along the lines of "It's a myth. This season celebrate reason." I wish I had seen it, it sounds like an amusing waste of money, equal to any pro-religious billboard.

season of reason

Smiley: grin

Ironically, found the Google Image search image from The Blaze Smiley: tongue
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#29 Sep 08 2011 at 1:58 PM Rating: Excellent
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lolgaxe wrote:
This season celebrate reason.

I bet Reason Trees suck.
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#30 Sep 08 2011 at 2:02 PM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
lolgaxe wrote:
This season celebrate reason.

I bet Reason Trees suck.


Yeah, since there's no Santa for Reasonmas you know everything under the tree is socks and underwear. You know, reasonable presents. Maybe a new blender if you're lucky.
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#31 Sep 08 2011 at 2:05 PM Rating: Excellent
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Jophiel wrote:
lolgaxe wrote:
This season celebrate reason.

I bet Reason Trees suck.

I'm imagine they're reasonable, actually.
BAM!
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#32 Sep 08 2011 at 2:07 PM Rating: Excellent
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catwho wrote:
Yeah, since there's no Santa for Reasonmas you know everything under the tree is socks and underwear. You know, reasonable presents. Maybe a new blender if you're lucky.

Grandma gave you one of those long "money cards" but, when you open it, it has a savings bond. Much more practical.
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#33 Sep 08 2011 at 3:49 PM Rating: Excellent
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Of of I-10 outside of Sealy, we have some sort of "SECEDE" billboard. I've lost count of the abortion billboards I've seen.

Oh, Texas. Smiley: oyvey
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#34 Sep 08 2011 at 3:50 PM Rating: Excellent
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LockeColeMA wrote:
season of reason
I laughed. Hard.
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#35 Sep 08 2011 at 3:54 PM Rating: Decent
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LockeColeMA wrote:
gbaji wrote:
One is an expression of free speech. The other is an advocation of infringement of free speech. It shouldn't matter which sides beliefs one happens to agree with to see that difference.


This is true; I did not read her statement this way (more that she was asking who would pay for commercials like these).


Strange. Maybe I missed it, but I didn't see her ask anything remotely like that anywhere. She did say (and you quoted and responded to her) that it was funny that an advertising contest would involve advertisements banning free speech. As far as I can see, you were the one who brought up the issue of who would pay for such a thing, not her.
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#36 Sep 08 2011 at 4:13 PM Rating: Excellent
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LockeColeMA wrote:
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If I were religious I don't think either of those commercials would make me question my beliefs. They'd probably **** me off with their stupid rhetoric.

Lucky. Every day I pass by this billboard:
after you die


It's pretty inoffensive,

Like ****! It's giving you the finger!

Edited, Sep 8th 2011 6:14pm by Debalic
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#37 Sep 08 2011 at 4:19 PM Rating: Excellent
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This is my favourite non-religious billboard:
http://s3-ak.buzzfed.com/static/imagebuzz/terminal01/2009/12/17/10/god-is-a-hard-act-to-follow-19680-1261065492-4.jpg
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When it comes to sitting around not doing anything for long periods of time, only being active for short windows, and marginal changes and sidegrades I'd say FFXI players were the perfect choice for politicians.


#38 Sep 08 2011 at 5:17 PM Rating: Excellent
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#39 Sep 08 2011 at 5:22 PM Rating: Excellent
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#40 Sep 15 2011 at 4:39 PM Rating: Excellent
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I thought this was an interesting story that relates to this topic:

Quote:


Most Canadians think religion more harmful than good: survey


By Teresa Smith, Postmedia News September 15, 2011 3:24 PM



Story
Photos ( 1 )

Images such as this, showing members of the infamous Westboro Baptist Church protesting *** marriage, have convinced many people that religious faith can be destructive.

OTTAWA — It's no secret fewer Canadians attend church today than 20 years ago, but what may be surprising is almost half of Canadians believe religion does more harm than good, according to the results of a survey conducted by Ipsos Reid.

Explanations from experts vary — from fear of extremists and anger toward individuals who abuse positions of power, to a national 'forgetting' of Canadian history.

"In the past few years, there have been several high-profile international situations involving perceived religious conflicts, as well as the anniversary of 9/11, and I think when people see those, it causes them to fear religion and to see it as a source of conflict," said Janet Epp Buckingham, associate professor at Trinity Western University in Ottawa.

Religion seems to be a key player in many of today's top stories, from stand-alone events — such as the 2005 riots in the suburbs of Paris linked to the French government's proposed burka ban, and right-wing Christian Anders Behring Breivik's shooting rampage in Oslo, Norway — to more drawn-out sagas, such as child abuse in the Catholic Church, and the perception that Christians are constantly campaigning against *** marriage and abortion.

Canadians who don't participate in religion themselves experience it in the news, which can sensationalize the negatives aspects of religion, said Dr. Pamela ****** Young, the principal of the School of Religion at Queen's University, in Kingston, Ont.

****** Young said that had the survey asked if religious people did more harm than good, the answer would have been very different.

"To me, that means people think religion is harmful, but people who are religious aren't particularly harmful," she said.

The survey, which was conducted ahead of the launch of a new Global TV show — Context — about religion in Canada, also found that 89 per cent of Canadians are comfortable being around people of different faiths.

****** Young said when she asks most of her first-year students if they're religious, they say no. When she asks if they are spiritual, they say yes.

She said this follows a general trend among Canadians who are turning away from organized religion — which is seen as a concrete set of pre-ordained rules — in favour of a more personalized spiritual journey.

But, on the question of whether religion does more harm than good, Rev. Canon Dr. Bill Prentice said: "We forget our history."

He pointed out that the first hospitals, schools, and universities in Canada were founded by religious institutions, or at the very least, have a religious foundation.

Prentice, director of Community Ministry for the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa, said churches continue to "do good works" across the country, managing food banks, social programs, and helping the country's homeless find shelter.

These charities "wouldn't exist if the churches pulled out because the volunteer sector in the religious communities do work that wouldn't otherwise go on," he said.

"I think we take for granted all the positive things that religious institutions are doing in our society, because they're working in the background and they're working with marginalized people," said Epp Buckingham. "They're the first on the ground when there's a humanitarian disaster, or a tornado or a hurricane, and they're often the unsung heroes."

Dan Merkur, a visiting scholar in the department for the study of religion at the University of Toronto, said he thinks there are some massive changes happening in organized religion worldwide.

In the 1960s and 70s, he said, most clergy tried to 'rationalize' religion by making it logical. But, these days, he said the trend is toward social work and counselling, suggesting that clergy "want to listen to people and help them through their troubles."

This, said Merkur, could be a reaction to fewer people in the pews, or it could be the natural course of religious philosophy.

http://www.vancouversun.com/Most+Canadians+think+religion+more+harmful+than+good+survey/5409555/story.html



Edited, Sep 15th 2011 3:39pm by Olorinus
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lolgaxe wrote:
When it comes to sitting around not doing anything for long periods of time, only being active for short windows, and marginal changes and sidegrades I'd say FFXI players were the perfect choice for politicians.


#41 Sep 15 2011 at 4:44 PM Rating: Excellent
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As someone more religious than the norm around here (not that it'd take much), neither commercial made me consider giving up religion. So they both failed as commercials no matter how much atheists want to high-five one other over them.
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#42 Sep 15 2011 at 7:19 PM Rating: Good
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Elinda wrote:
If I were religious I don't think either of those commercials would make me question my beliefs. They'd probably **** me off with their stupid rhetoric.

Jophiel wrote:
As someone more religious than the norm around here (not that it'd take much), neither commercial made me consider giving up religion. So they both failed as commercials no matter how much atheists want to high-five one other over them.

I'm not sure if it's because my job involves trying to sell people more stuff than they need, but I think you both have a pretty flawed idea of how commercials work.

They aren't mind control; they aren't convincing arguments. You don't see a commercials about Lady Gaga drinking Dr. Pepper and mumble to yourself "Dr. Pepper, Dr. Pepper," or think "Hmm, they've made a good point that my life would be more like that of a music star if I drink their beverage."

Most advertisements you see are effective. On the most basic level they're there to inform and remind. The product exists, and we hope you haven't forgotten about it. Typically, the more people think about it the better. If you see a commercial on tv that makes you post about how totally ineffective it was, then it's totally working.

I also think you have this flawed notion that commercials are supposed convince and who they inevitably end up swaying. An M&Ms commercials isn't trying to make an argument about why you should by M7Ms over Mars bars and isn't trying to sway the people who say they love Mars bars and hate M&Ms. It's about the people who don't really give a crap about candy. It's about the childless person picking out a bag of Halloween candy who needs to get to his doctor visit in 15 minutes and he really doesn't give a crap what he gets for them. Commercials are there to grab the fringes and apathetic fence sitters. They don't work in decision based buying, they work on impulse buying.

A commercial about atheism doesn't need to directly convince a single theist to be effective, and judging by it by the ability to turn a churchgoer into a secularist is a pretty ridiculous metric.
#43 Sep 15 2011 at 7:23 PM Rating: Excellent
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You're getting a lot of typing practice taking me seriously.
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Belkira wrote:
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#44 Sep 15 2011 at 7:26 PM Rating: Excellent
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You should see how muscular my hands are.
#45 Sep 15 2011 at 7:31 PM Rating: Excellent
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Allegory wrote:
You should see how muscular my hands are.

That isn't from typing...
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#46 Sep 15 2011 at 7:39 PM Rating: Excellent
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Kastigir wrote:
Allegory wrote:
You should see how muscular my hands are.
That isn't from typing...
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#47 Sep 15 2011 at 7:39 PM Rating: Excellent
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I personally would have gone in the other direction. The problem with your argument is that people always take it to the other extreme (and you're kind of doing the same). Someone says "I hate that new Burger King commercial so much, I'm never eating there again" and some other wisetard invariably says "You're talking about it so that means it worked!"

No, it doesn't. Burger King doesn't want you talking about or thinking about them. They don't give a shit if the commercial wins awards. They only want Customer Traffic Post-Commercial > Customer Traffic Pre-Commercial. If it causes a net loss of customers -- but they're talking about it! -- then the commercial was a failure. If it results in stagnation, it's a failure unless you're hemorrhaging customers to the point where stagnation is good news.

Now I would have said another purpose of advertisement is to make the already converted feel good about their choice. You don't want your atheists to have doubts about their decisions, you want to pat them on the back and say "Good job!". That's why products come with instructional fliers congratulating you on your purchase or restaurants have posters inside the building saying how much you'll love this experience. It's not to make the faithful lose faith, it's to let the secular high-five one another for being secular.
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#48 Sep 15 2011 at 7:56 PM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
No, it doesn't. Burger King doesn't want you talking about or thinking about them. They don't give a shit if the commercial wins awards. They only want Customer Traffic Post-Commercial > Customer Traffic Pre-Commercial. If it causes a net loss of customers -- but they're talking about it! -- then the commercial was a failure. If it results in stagnation, it's a failure unless you're hemorrhaging customers to the point where stagnation is good news.

That's what I got into in my seconod paragraph. Companies want increased awareness (excluding being in the news for putting rat poison in their products) because it does lead to increased sales. They don't turn McDonald's fans into Burger King fans. They turn people who don't give a crap into "eh maybe I'll eat at Burger King, since it's right here."

Companies don't make big investments into advertising to high five themselves.
Jophiel wrote:
It's not to make the faithful lose faith

Nor was it trying to. That's not how any commercial works, and is a terrible metric to measure effectiveness by. Think about it in any other terms. Do political adds turn life long Republicans into Democrats? No? Are they then entirely about Democrats high-fiving each other? It's the exact same situation.
#49 Sep 15 2011 at 8:32 PM Rating: Excellent
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The only thing I ever really take from commercials is how stupid they are.
#50 Sep 15 2011 at 8:45 PM Rating: Good
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Clearly those companies are all just high-fiving themselves.
#51 Sep 15 2011 at 9:01 PM Rating: Excellent
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They try for a lower five, but their speed is lacking in the execution.
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