Armageddon???? - Part Eighty One Up

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PainRack
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Post by PainRack »

With regards to dead soldiers, won't the simplest thing to do be "legal liability ends once you're no longer on the mortal plane", and soldiers looking to re-up would had a new contract which applies to the "dead"?

After all, the pensions/insurance/etc and other pay applies only to when you're actively serving in the military and presumably in their active service alive. Once dead, an entire new legal frontier applies to you and existing laws/contracts won't apply.

It sounds like the most simplest way to screw up dead soldiers:D
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Post by Stuart »

Brain_Caster wrote:You're forgetting random Mujaheedin, Vietcong, Burmese rebels, etc, etc, etc , which are just as skilled and intelligent as those people you've mentionned, but which we have simply never heard of. The list is likely to have at least hundreds of people, more likely tens of thousands, including some who might have been simply civilians in their lifes and have never even seen a battlefield but simply happen to have just the personality for the job.
Which is why I don't want people bringing in their favorite alleged super-heroes as escapees. Gaius Julius was not a prisoner for a specific, well-defined plot reason that leads us into the next volume of this trilogy. Sirling was allowed in because he illustrates a specific point. It's not just, as Mike pointed out, that a person has the ability to escape, the opportunity to do so and a mistake on the part of the guards. It's also that the person who escapes has the brains to do nothing and just evade recapture. Sopmebody who goes off on a killing rampage may get a few kills but they will be caught and properly killed themselves. It needs moral fortitude to sit and wait for maybe thousands of years. Note also that Rahab's reaction to Kim and her group was perfectly correct, within her terms of reference. They were going to achieve nothing and may get a lot of escapees caught. What she didn't know was that Kim et al had the ability to fight and could get weapons that put them millenia ahead of the demons in terms of military arts.

If we take the qualifications listed for a successful escapee, it may well be that Pflong, a buffalo herder from Laos in 1461 is much better "qualified" to escape (and remain escaped) that Alexander the Great

A note to all contributers present and future. Its very tempting to write your favorite historical character in as an escapee, please don't do it. Unless there's a very specific point to be served, its cheesy
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Post by JN1 »

A note to all contributers present and future. Its very tempting to write your favorite historical character in as an escapee, please don't do it. Unless there's a very specific point to be served, its cheesy
That is a very good point, Stu. I forgot that and let myself get carried away; won't let it happen again. :D
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Post by GrandMasterTerwynn »

Adrian Laguna wrote:That there are at least a few individuals who are wankery incarnated.
These are the people most likely to eventually be recaptured, and then killed and eaten by baldricks on the account of a lack of patience.
Alexander "me and my two shield bearers vs. an army" the Great.
Megos Alexandros typifies this. When the story first picked up, I wondered who'd have the gumption to escape and remain escaped. Alexander came to mind. Then I realized that, while he probably escaped fairly easily, he probably also got himself killed just as easily.
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Post by Adrian Laguna »

Oh Alexander probably died again before his generals got done fighting over his corpse. I'm just saying, there are people who are just are so badass that it's almost a given that they'll escape. Naturally I can only cite examples who are famous, but there are likely lots of nameless guys who are similar but for the lack of ambition. Though in Alex's case, I wouldn't be surprised if he never was in bondage in the first place, his almost supernatural luck could be explained as having the favour of one of the elder gods.
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Post by MKSheppard »

The Duchess of Zeon wrote:The third man who could make that list, and there are only three in the entire 20th century with its billions of people, is Lawrence of Arabia.
Wrong. T.E. Lawrence is an incredibly overrated person. He managed to get some Arabs uppity; which ANYONE can do.

It's another thing to repeatedly carry out absurdly impossible operations against all odds, which Skorzeny and Stirling did not once, but several times.

And while I was away, I realized that there's one former POTUS who is probably walking around free:

Andrew Jackson
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Post by Adrian Laguna »

Oh man, Shep is right. Ol' Hickory Stick, the guy who once took a shot in the gut during a duel but was so unflinching everyone thought the bullet missed. He may have been an evil racist bastard, but he was a tough evil racist bastard. Not to mention, he definitely knew how to bide his time, all you have to do is look at his performance in the Battle of New Orleans. Nerves of fucking steel on that man.

One thing though, I think he was pretty religious. That's his major weakness, if his mind doesn't break from the shock of being in Hell then he might have freed himself. If not, and there's a good chance of that, then he's just another endlessly suffering soul.
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Post by JBG »

Good point Stuart.

Though, Stirling having got free does not come as a surprise, Such people, all other things being equal, would make better use of the opportunities to be free, and would form a natural centre around which other SP etc forces would congregate and survive.

Having said that, Stirling's unit would be excellent for so many tasks within Hell.

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Post by ray245 »

I'm just wondering about one thing, can a killed person give birth to a child in hell?
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Post by Robo Jesus »

ray245 wrote:I'm just wondering about one thing, can a killed person give birth to a child in hell?
No.

The dead may be able to regenerate approximations of various tissues and bodily fluids, but they are not reproducing the DNA stands that would be needed to create those tissues were they still living. Without the DNA strands needed for ova and sperm to work as 'ova and sperm', they cannot reproduce. That is why the dead children do not age, and why the dead cannot reproduce. They don't have the DNA that tells their bodies what to do and when to do it as a living persons body would.
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Post by Brain_Caster »

Robo Jesus wrote:
ray245 wrote:I'm just wondering about one thing, can a killed person give birth to a child in hell?
No.

The dead may be able to regenerate approximations of various tissues and bodily fluids, but they are not reproducing the DNA stands that would be needed to create those tissues were they still living. Without the DNA strands needed for ova and sperm to work as 'ova and sperm', they cannot reproduce. That is why the dead children do not age, and why the dead cannot reproduce. They don't have the DNA that tells their bodies what to do and when to do it as a living persons body would.
And you know these "facts" how exactly? Seriously, DNA is not replacable in the human body, what you describe is biologically impossible.
Even if the dead could somehow create such tissue, that tissue would not be functional without a normal, complete set of genes in the cells. Given the fact that they aren't totally immobilized corpses, we can be fairly sure that they have DNA.

Right now there's absolutely no way to know for sure. On the other hand, the Baldricks seem to have no problems reproducing and are supossedly related to humanity.
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Post by Robo Jesus »

Brain_Caster wrote:And you know these "facts" how exactly? Seriously, DNA is not replacable in the human body, what you describe is biologically impossible.
It's also impossible for energy to be converted into matter as we're seeing with the dead in this story. Yet is is happening. Also, as an answer it makes the most sense without having to add a shitload of fancy technobabble to it.

Brain_Caster wrote:Even if the dead could somehow create such tissue, that tissue would not be functional without a normal, complete set of genes in the cells.
Yes, because the fact these people are literally creating matter (tissues) out of nothing but energy, and the fact that it is happen beyond their control, doesn't outright show that they're literally creating and recreating approximations of living tissue without the normal process of cell division and growth (I.E. aging) literally without the needed DNA strands to to begin with.

Oh wait, that actually has been shown to be case.

Brain_Caster wrote:Given the fact that they aren't totally immobilized corpses, we can be fairly sure that they have DNA.
Except for the fact that these living human corpses are made out out faux matter and their bodies are (re)created without the normal cycle of life processes (conception, cell division, birth, growth). The demons however ARE conceived, born, and grow/age like any other living creature on Earth. Hence, you CANNOT say that the demons and humans of hell are the same, as that argument does not fit what evidence we have.

Brain_Caster wrote:Right now there's absolutely no way to know for sure. On the other hand, the Baldricks seem to have no problems reproducing and are supossedly related to humanity.
The Baldrics, though slightly composed of faux matter like the dead (most likely because the Baldricks make snacks out of the dead humans there), aren't actually "dead" and composed entirely out of bodies of faux matter like the dead humans are, and the Baldricks still carry out the normal life processes, hence the Baldrics are still "normal" living creatures while the dead humans are not. The dead humans are literally appearing out of 'nowhere' with bodies made entirely out of faux matter, do not carry out normal life processes, and do not age/grow. If the dead weren't appearing in hell in the manner as they are and not carrying on the normal life functions (like aging in the case of the fetuses as the horomones and DNA strands would be pushing the bodies of the children to continue growing until at least the point of puberty), you might have the chance of making a more solid argument that the dead humans of hell are "normal" living creatures.

As it stands, such an argument to that effect isn't as strong as it could be.
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Post by Starglider »

I don't know where this whole 'faux matter' concept comes from. I'm not even sure what it means, in physical terms; are you talking about a whole new family of particles?

What we do know is that humans in hell can violate conservation of mass when healing, so it's obvious that some process outside of known physics is acting to keep their bodies looking like an idealised 'template'. Pregnancy does seem unlikely because it requires significant changes in the (female) body that would require deviation from this template. In fact if female hormonal cycle is suppressed, then women in hell presumably won't be ovulating or menstruating. Men would still be producing sperm, but they'd probably die off very quickly outside of hell, possibly even outside of the man's body.

So my guess would be that dead can't reproduce because they effectively have perfect birth control, not because they're made of some mysterious substance that isn't matter as we know it (I can't imagine how the demons would be able to digest the later with normal biochemical digestive systems).
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Post by Darth Wong »

Starglider wrote:What we do know is that humans in hell can violate conservation of mass when healing, so it's obvious that some process outside of known physics is acting to keep their bodies looking like an idealised 'template'.
How do we know that? They're surrounded with hydrocarbons and other material; how do you know that stuff isn't just being added to their bodies to replenish them? There are a LOT of hypotheses we would want to run through before resorting to the conclusion that conservation of mass gets thrown out the window.
Robo Jesus wrote:It's also impossible for energy to be converted into matter as we're seeing with the dead in this story. Yet is is happening.
It's not thermodynamically impossible to convert energy into matter. We just don't know how you would go about doing it. In any case, it's speculation rather than observation: we have not actually seen anything happen which requires this hypothesis of direct energy conversion to matter.
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Post by Starglider »

Darth Wong wrote:
Starglider wrote:What we do know is that humans in hell can violate conservation of mass when healing, so it's obvious that some process outside of known physics is acting to keep their bodies looking like an idealised 'template'.
How do we know that? They're surrounded with hydrocarbons and other material; how do you know that stuff isn't just being added to their bodies to replenish them?
The humans pulled out of the lava river were completely lacking skin. They'd pretty much have to be severely dehydrated as well - as it is only an extra-physical process could keep them from reaching thermal equilibrium with the lava and having all their body water boil away and flesh burn up. I suppose they could in principle pull the mass for regeneration from the atmosphere, but that would imply elemental transmutation as I don't think there's enough CO2 in even hell's atmosphere to support creation of new flesh at the rate we saw, assuming it isn't actively sucked in somehow.
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Post by Robo Jesus »

Starglider wrote:I don't know where this whole 'faux matter' concept comes from. I'm not even sure what it means, in physical terms; are you talking about a whole new family of particles?
The reason I call it faux matter is because #1. it's made out of energy, and #2. it decays very rapidly unless it's being fed electricity outside of hell. Normal matter does not act like that. Hence, it is a faux form of matter. And the dead are made out of it.



Anyways, to address the issues to the point I'm bringing up.

The biggest problem so far with the idea that the dead humans are almost perfectly identical to their living counterparts, down to their DNA, is presented with the dead children. If the dead children have DNA, then they /should/ be growing, as the DNA and hormones within their bodies would be pushing their bodies to continue developing and growing until at least the point of puberty. However, the dead children are not growing. They are not aging. That right says that either they do not have DNA or any form of hormones within their bodies, otherwise they /would/ continue to grow. The problem with the lack of hormones is more obvious in that the tissues would not be able to work right. However, that issue doesn't really exist in the same manner with a lack of DNA.

Another issue is how the DNA is being passed on into the realm of hell as well. You see, a living person gets their DNA from their living parents the moment they're conceived. The dead are not conceived when they appear in hell, so where are they getting their DNA from?
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Post by Starglider »

Robo Jesus wrote:The reason I call it faux matter is because #1. it's made out of energy,
But what does that mean? 'Made out of energy'? What kind of energy? Particle kinetic energy and potential energy bound up in nuclear fields can be transformed into new particles, and vice versa, but that has nothing to do with the kind of 'creatures of pure energy' silliness you see in soft sci-fi.
#2. it decays very rapidly unless it's being fed electricity outside of hell.
It decays chemically. It certainly doesn't transform into 'energy' in a way understandable by current physics, otherwise every time you killed a Baldrick you'd get a gigaton explosion as their body is converted into hard radiation.
If the dead children have DNA, then they /should/ be growing, as the DNA and hormones within their bodies would be pushing their bodies to continue developing and growing until at least the point of puberty.
Without DNA you can't make new proteins, so all biochemical activity would stop rather quickly. If you're not going to have DNA, you might as well say 'the dead are solid holograms', because there's nothing inbetween that works as an even moderately plausible biology.
However, the dead children are not growing. They are not aging.
I think it's more likely that whatever force heals their bodies within minutes is more than adequate to resist the very slow 'damage' that natural aging mechanisms are doing to the body.
You see, a living person gets their DNA from their living parents the moment they're conceived. The dead are not conceived when they appear in hell, so where are they getting their DNA from?
The same place they're getting the rest of their mind and body from. If they can have the exact same neural patterns, hair color and freckle distribution that they did before, I doubt DNA is going to be an issue.
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Post by The Duchess of Zeon »

Starglider wrote:
Darth Wong wrote:
Starglider wrote:What we do know is that humans in hell can violate conservation of mass when healing, so it's obvious that some process outside of known physics is acting to keep their bodies looking like an idealised 'template'.
How do we know that? They're surrounded with hydrocarbons and other material; how do you know that stuff isn't just being added to their bodies to replenish them?
The humans pulled out of the lava river were completely lacking skin. They'd pretty much have to be severely dehydrated as well - as it is only an extra-physical process could keep them from reaching thermal equilibrium with the lava and having all their body water boil away and flesh burn up. I suppose they could in principle pull the mass for regeneration from the atmosphere, but that would imply elemental transmutation as I don't think there's enough CO2 in even hell's atmosphere to support creation of new flesh at the rate we saw, assuming it isn't actively sucked in somehow.
Transmutation is however a favourable and simpler alternative to the violation of conservation of mass.
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Post by Starglider »

The Duchess of Zeon wrote:Transmutation is however a favourable and simpler alternative to the violation of conservation of mass.
Six and two threes really. For transmutation, you have to have a mechanism capable of tearing atoms apart and reshuffling the subatomic particles into an extremely specific configuration; working biological tissue. It has to do this without emitting significant radiation or waste products, which is hard to envision. For matter creation, you have to have a mechanism that can make particles pop into existence, again matching an extremely specific configuration. Particles popping into existence is hardly unprecedented - virtual particles do all the time - conservation of mass-energy is probably only locally violated anyway, given the proven existence of extra-dimensional realms in this story.

So it's simpler in the sense that it's an easy answer to 'where do the particles come from', but it makes the (as yet unexplained) mechanism that's causing the regeneration even more complex than before.
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Post by Darth Wong »

Starglider wrote:
The Duchess of Zeon wrote:Transmutation is however a favourable and simpler alternative to the violation of conservation of mass.
Six and two threes really. For transmutation, you have to have a mechanism capable of tearing atoms apart and reshuffling the subatomic particles into an extremely specific configuration; working biological tissue. It has to do this without emitting significant radiation or waste products, which is hard to envision. For matter creation, you have to have a mechanism that can make particles pop into existence, again matching an extremely specific configuration. Particles popping into existence is hardly unprecedented - virtual particles do all the time - conservation of mass-energy is probably only locally violated anyway, given the proven existence of extra-dimensional realms in this story.

So it's simpler in the sense that it's an easy answer to 'where do the particles come from', but it makes the (as yet unexplained) mechanism that's causing the regeneration even more complex than before.
No it's not. An unexplained mechanism is better than a fundamental violation.
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Post by Mayabird »

Alright, fess up. Who listed this story on TV Tropes? Because whoever you are, you left out a link.

While I'm here and everybody's talking about who might or might not have escaped the tortures of hell, I'm wondering which (un)lucky humans ended up singing in the choir eternal. A lot of old Hebrews probably, them being the Chosen People and all, but presumably a lot of Christians as well. Probably a large number of saints and martyrs, but I'm wondering who else.
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Post by Darth Wong »

Mayabird wrote:Alright, fess up. Who listed this story on TV Tropes? Because whoever you are, you left out a link.
It's also not a good example of the "mind-bogglingly powerful villain gets built up to absurd levels and then easily defeated" trope; the demons are never built up to be shatteringly powerful before they clash with the humans (unless you take cultural expectations outside the story into effect), and the means the humans use to defeat them are appropriately powered.
While I'm here and everybody's talking about who might or might not have escaped the tortures of hell, I'm wondering which (un)lucky humans ended up singing in the choir eternal. A lot of old Hebrews probably, them being the Chosen People and all, but presumably a lot of Christians as well. Probably a large number of saints and martyrs, but I'm wondering who else.
It depends on whether the estimate of nobody being allowed in for the last thousand years is accurate. If it is, then most of them are probably lost to history, apart from a few people mentioned in the Old Testament. Ironically enough, none of the Christian Crusaders would have made it in. If it isn't, then one might surmise from Yahweh's attitude that he started his new policy around the time of the Enlightenment, when people started turning away from him. This would mean that a lot of the Crusaders would probably be there, along with various witch hunters, Catholic torturers, etc. All of the most mindlessly devout.
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Post by Cecelia5578 »

Darth Wong wrote:
Mayabird wrote:Alright, fess up. Who listed this story on TV Tropes? Because whoever you are, you left out a link.
It's also not a good example of the "mind-bogglingly powerful villain gets built up to absurd levels and then easily defeated" trope; the demons are never built up to be shatteringly powerful before they clash with the humans (unless you take cultural expectations outside the story into effect), and the means the humans use to defeat them are appropriately powered.
While I'm here and everybody's talking about who might or might not have escaped the tortures of hell, I'm wondering which (un)lucky humans ended up singing in the choir eternal. A lot of old Hebrews probably, them being the Chosen People and all, but presumably a lot of Christians as well. Probably a large number of saints and martyrs, but I'm wondering who else.
It depends on whether the estimate of nobody being allowed in for the last thousand years is accurate. If it is, then most of them are probably lost to history, apart from a few people mentioned in the Old Testament. Ironically enough, none of the Christian Crusaders would have made it in. If it isn't, then one might surmise from Yahweh's attitude that he started his new policy around the time of the Enlightenment, when people started turning away from him. This would mean that a lot of the Crusaders would probably be there, along with various witch hunters, Catholic torturers, etc. All of the most mindlessly devout.

There are plenty of saints from the first 1000 years of Christianity who would have made it in, probably many ordinary people as well. Most of whom were not inquisitors, witch hunters, etc. (concepts which didn't exist really in the 1st Millenium anyways).
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Post by Adrian Laguna »

Darth Wong wrote:If it isn't, then one might surmise from Yahweh's attitude that he started his new policy around the time of the Enlightenment, when people started turning away from him. This would mean that a lot of the Crusaders would probably be there, along with various witch hunters, Catholic torturers, etc. All of the most mindlessly devout.
A great lot of Crusaders weren't so much devout as looking for power, prestige, loot, or just a good fight. I mean shit, the Fourth Crusade didn't even make it to the Holy Land, they looted (Christian!) Constantinople and went home. The only one where a good chunk of participants would have made the cut for Heaven was the People's Crusade, it was composed of a bunch of peasants and priests who believed they would be able to defeat the Saracens through the power of sheer faith. As you might imagine, they got slaughtered like cattle.
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Adrian Laguna wrote:
Darth Wong wrote:If it isn't, then one might surmise from Yahweh's attitude that he started his new policy around the time of the Enlightenment, when people started turning away from him. This would mean that a lot of the Crusaders would probably be there, along with various witch hunters, Catholic torturers, etc. All of the most mindlessly devout.
A great lot of Crusaders weren't so much devout as looking for power, prestige, loot, or just a good fight.
You could describe George W. Bush that way. It doesn't mean he's not devout.
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