MT VOID 02/08/08 -- Vol. 26, No. 32, Whole Number 1479

MT VOID 02/08/08 -- Vol. 26, No. 32, Whole Number 1479

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Mt. Holz Science Fiction Society
02/08/08 -- Vol. 26, No. 32, Whole Number 1479

Table of Contents

      El Honcho Grande: Mark Leeper, La Honcha Bonita: Evelyn Leeper, Back issues at All material copyright by author unless otherwise noted. All comments sent will be assumed authorized for inclusion unless otherwise noted. To subscribe, send mail to To unsubscribe, send mail to

Various Links:

Science Fiction Politics: Five Ways 9/11 Changed Science Fiction:>

20 Things You Didn't Know about SF:

Or maybe you did:

Science Fiction becomes Reality in India:

Readings of classic science fiction stories:

Horror Safety Ads:

Hugo Reminder:

Just a reminder--Hugo nominations must be *received* in by March 1, 2008. This is earlier than in most previous years.

Puppy Bowl (comments by Mark R. Leeper):

My question is three hours of watching puppies cavort free-style on TV actually what you would call "reality TV"? [-mrl]

Israel and the Electric Car (comments by Mark R. Leeper):

Last week I was talking about the Nano, the new car announced by Tata of India. The car will sell in India for about the equivalent of $2500. It initially sounds like a good idea, but there are bad implications to putting millions of petroleum cars on the road and of India getting into the game of competing for the ever scarcer and more expensive commodity of petroleum. If the immobility of the Indian (and Chinese) people had an upside, it was that by the time they started getting cars in large numbers, it would be electric cars they would be driving. It seems we have lost that race.

It is good that something is coming along to make the middle class of India more mobile. I cannot help but think that the electric car would have been a better decision for India in spite of current infrastructure problems.

Perhaps there will not be so many petroleum-burning cars as I am thinking. As with the Model T, the Tata Nano may have problems with roads. Ours roads had mud. India has the paved roads, but they also have severe people-congestion. The roads there are congested to what we would consider a ludicrous degree. Traffic patterns often much like chaos. And it is not clear to me that any car will work well when stuck behind that in some parts of the country may include a slow-walking elephant. At least it did not when I was in India.

Meanwhile Israel had decided to go in for the electric car in a big way with government-backed financial incentives for purchasers and subsidies to manufacturers. They would tax cars based on the emissions so electric cars would be a good investment and it will help build the domestic industry in electric cars.

See and

To say that building the electric car industry is Israel is a good idea is a huge understatement. How is the electric car good for Israel? Let me count the ways.

There are still some problems with the electric car and it is not ready to replace the petroleum burner, but that may just take some clever engineering, and clever engineers are not a scarce commodity in Israel. Israel could find that pioneering the electric car is a way to do well by doing good.

Tata is investing in old technology and pulling India into that hole with it. Israel seems to have its eyes on the future. [-mrl]

VARIABLE STAR by Robert A. Heinlein and Spider Robinson (copyright 2007 by Blackstone Audio, Inc., 9 CDs, ISBN 10: 0-7861-6858-7, ISBN 13: 978-0-7861-6858-3, read by Spider Robinson) (audiobook review by Joe Karpierz):

I didn't cut my SF teeth on Robert A. Heinlein; that role was filled by Arthur C. Clarke. In fact, I really never read any Heinlein until the 1980s, when FRIDAY was nominated for a Hugo. I read most of the ones that came after that, like THE CAT WHO WALKS THROUGH WALLS, and other later works. I also read the expanded version of STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND. My reaction, after reading STRANGER, was, "What's the big deal?"

I cut my book reviewing teeth on Spider Robinson's reviews in Galaxy magazine back in the 1970s, as I'm fairly sure I mentioned in some previous review. I've generally liked Robinson's work, but even so it can get a little tedious now and again.

So, how would a collaboration of sorts between the two turn out? Pretty good; not great, but pretty good.

VARIABLE STAR was written by Robinson from an incomplete outline written by Heinlein in 1955--incomplete in the fact that the very last page of the outline, which of course contained the ending, was missing. Robinson actually got the gig during a panel at Torcon back in 2003. It was a Heinlein panel, of course, wherein an announcement was made of this outline, and someone in the room shouted that Spider ought to write the book from it. (It should be noted that Robinson cut *his* SF teeth on Heinlein, so the suggestion made some sense). Well, the appropriate people that need to be present to make something like this work were in the room--including Spider--and he got the job.

Enough of that. The year is 2286, and Joel Johnston is eighteen years old and in love with his girlfried Jinny Hamilton. Joel is from Ganymede, and is the son of a Nobel prize winning physicist. He is dirt broke, and plans to get a scholarship to a prestigious school to continue his music education. Jinny, however, is NOT a Hamilton, but a Conrad. Her grandfather is Richard Conrad, one of the richest men in the solar system who controls a good deal of the commerce in said solar system. Joel and Jinny are to be married, but Joel has a surprise coming his way. The elder Conrad, called Conrad of Conrad, plans to have him educated to take over the family business; in essence, Joel would be come Conrad of Conrad.

Joel wants none of it. He goes on a massive bender of sorts, and when he wakes up he finds that Conrad has ensured that Joel would not get that scholarship. As a result, Joel hops aboard the RSS Charles Sheffield, a colony ship headed on a twenty-year voyage to a distant planet. Jinny tries to talk him out of it, but to no avail. Joel has had it with her.

What ensues is the story of a man thrust into a situation he's not quite sure he wants to be in, but now he must make the best of it and learn to get along and survive. He must heal from his failed relationship with Jinny, become a part of the colony to spread humanity to the stars, and generally learn to survive and become a fully functional human being.

One thing this book really isn't is a Heinlein novel. He was told not to try and write in Heinlein's voice, but instead to write his own book to the outline. What we have then is really a pretty good Spider Robinson book, full of jokes, puns, music, and all around good times. I think the book is fairly reminiscent of the Heinlein books that I've read in terms of some of the things that Robinson talks about, but it is distinctly Spider in nature. And the ending that Spider came up is a good one, I think, full of optimism and hope for future's humanity.

As a reader, Spider is good enough to pull this off. I've heard him read from a Callahan book at a con, and this was very reminiscent of that reading. He does his best trying to pull off female voices, but the rest are fairly decent. And Spider does a heck of a job reading his own humor; I told my daughter that the only thing funnier than a Spider Robinson book is Spider reading one of his own books. He pulled if off nicely.

So, this is a pretty decent book, a nice way to fill the time in the car going to and from work. It's not a great book, but it's a pretty good one. [-jak]


CAPSULE: Norman Solomon's 2005 book (of the same title) comes to the screen as a 72-minute documentary. Solomon's subject is the almost formulaic approach that the US Government has used to sell wars to the American people. Particular emphasis is placed on parallels between the Vietnam War and the second Iraq war. Solomon is on-screen explaining his thesis and off-screen Sean Penn narrates. Solomon makes a strong, if not always convincing, case. Rating: low +2 (-4 to +4) or 7/10

Much more than it ever was in the 20th century, the feature documentary film is becoming a major venue for political argument. Cinema has proven to be a very effective medium for political argument. Perhaps more than arguments in books or newspaper editorials the medium of the film documentary is ideal to hold the attention of the recipient. Why is documentary film so effective? With written text the reader has control over the speed of the reading and has time to stop and to question points. A film, particularly one seen in public, gives the viewer no opportunity to pause the presentation and to think about the implications of the argument he has been presented. A live lecture also carries the audience along without their control, but it rarely engages the eye at the same time so it does not so much engulf the viewer. Documentary film can be a powerful medium for persuasion. Its main drawback is that if the film is released as a feature film it generally requires a paid admission so to a certain extent it is preaching to the converted. It perhaps can reach a wider audience on television, but that returns some control to the viewer.

In general the political left is holding the high ground in political documentaries with the most visible practitioner being Michael Moore, though he is far from the most accomplished in the medium. Charles Ferguson's NO END IN SIGHT and Molly Bingham's and Steve Connors's MEETING RESISTENCE are really very much better film examples. WAR MADE EASY: HOW PRESIDENTS & PUNDITS KEEP SPINNING US TO DEATH is a fast-paced comparison of some of the wars the United States has fought over the past fifty years and in particular how they were presented in Presidential Press Conferences and by the media. The film is narrated by actor and activist Sean Penn and has Norman Solomon putting for the major arguments. The film is actually based on Solomon's book of the same title.

As the film demonstrates, one of government's first responsibilities in waging war is selling that war to its own people. It is imperative to motivate the soldiers to risk their lives in the fight and to convince the general public to support the war effort. Solomon suggests that in the last fifty years the United States has been in more conflicts than it was in the more distant past and that the United States has provoked many of those conflicts. (Solomon never seems to consider the possibility that our decisive victory in WWII may have shown us to be the strongest world power and left the perception that with that power comes the responsibility to fight when need be for peace. Solomon ridicules the notion of fighting for peace after the Second World War, but avoids criticizing that interpretation of WWII.)

Solomon draws parallels between the Gulf of Tonkin "Incident" (which is now generally acknowledged to have not involved Vietnamese participation at all) and the Bush administration claim that Iraq prior to the second Iraq war was accumulating weapons of mass destruction. That assertion is now generally believed to be at best unproven and is assumed by Solomon to be false. Solomon shows how many dissenters in the media, in Congress, and the public are intimidated into silence to avoid the possible accusation of being disloyal to the troops who are risking their lives.

Once the war begins dissenters are accused of supporting a policy of not supporting our troop and of wanting to "cut and run." We see examples of this across wars. As is demonstrated, frequently an enemy head of state will be compared to Hitler. That can be used to provoke a predictable reaction. (I do not remember, however, Ho Chi Minh ever being compared to Hitler, but that would be a bit of a reach.) Solomon criticizes both Fox News and about equally CNN, which is usually considered more liberal.

One weakness of the film is that Solomon does not examine alternate explanations for the similarities from one war to the next of governments' and media's handling of the war. Solomon's case that the government and media follow a formula is not rock solid, but there is more than a little truth to it. There is some difficulty determining whether it is the government intentionally follows a proven formula for selling wars. It may be that similar circumstances are likely to elicit similar reactions. And the similarities may not be all that significant. It may be that Solomon's case of parallels between how the government sells is true, but not necessarily a profound one.

In any case the arguments seem worth considering and the film makse for provocative viewing. I rate WAR MADE EASY a low +2 on the -4 to +4 scale or 7/10.

Film Credits:


ROAD TO VICTORY (film review by Mark R. Leeper):

CAPSULE: A star college football player and an exotic dancer want to have a strong sexual relationship, but the football player is sexually dysfunctional and frustrated. This is a very unusual film that centers on the player's problem and his dealings with doctors in trying to fix the problem. Even on the art house film circuit this would be an unconventional film. The topic is almost better suited to documentary than to narrative style. Mike Reilly writes, directs, co-produces, and stars. Rating: low +1 (-4 to +4) or 5/10

I frequently start my reviews with a qualification that the film is a subject that I either have strong opinions on that I have little interest in. ROAD TO VICTORY is really about (at least) two subjects. One is the physical and psychological demands of being a star football player and the other is the effects of dysfunction on a sexual relationship. I come to the film with very little interest in either subject and I left the film with very little interest in either subject. That is just me, but recognize that the viewers' mileage may vary a great deal.

Elliot Bayser (Reilly) is a very promising college football player soon to go to professional football. He has been injured a few too many times and that may be contributing to his current difficulty. Apparently he has a humiliating problem with his sexual performance as the story begins. At a lecture on dysfunction he meets Anna. Anna is also a student at the same fictional West Coast school and in her spare time she also is a stripper at a local club. They two are quickly drawn to each other and Anna really wants sex, but Elliot finds he is unable to perform in bed. Both want to be together and even to have children together, but it becomes increasingly evident that Elliot will not be able to fulfill his first requirement in the process. ROAD TO VICTORY is unorthodox with its very clinical discussions of the physical and psychological causes and effects of sexual impotence. In particular it discusses the interrelation of impotence with violent contact sports like football. It is suggested by one doctor that the problem is the use of steroids. It seemed inevitably that sooner or later that would be one explanation. But Elliot refuses to either confirm or deny that he has ever used steroids. We see in his memories that he has received injections and that fact is even important to him, but we do not know the contents of that syringe. Other explanations are given, but the actual causes of the problem remain unclear throughout. In the end Elliot will have to decide what his values really are.

The issues of this film are broader than just whether football is harmful to sexual health. There are issues of how the medical community treats athletes and patients in general. There are problems inherent in the system including those of procedures and problems of values. The situation is explained by a slightly too convenient good-guy doctor who is willing to take a global view of the changing procedures of the medical profession and in particular its use and reliance on drugs.

In his first feature film Mike Reilly seems to run the whole show. He is co-producer, writer, director and he plays the main character. As with any "first film" there are several rough edges. The viewer can tell this is an independent film with minor problems that a major studio film would not allow. One problem may have been a trick of the lighting, but it is something of a distraction. As Elliot speaks to Anna from behind the wheel of a car, his eyes appear to be very different colors. One appears green and one appears brown. I suppose a studio film would have seen the problem and would digitally correct it. I am sure the budget here did not allow for that. The film does show some subtlety. The film very explicitly tells us that there is sex going on somewhere near the camera, but the film is shot without nudity. The dialog is very graphic and explicit, the photography is not at all.

This film is very independent even for an independent film. It will have a very selective appeal and to be candid I would not have recommended the film to a viewer like myself. But it does tackle some weighty issues frankly in ways that are startlingly different from anything I have seen in a film before. The reach of this film goes beyond addressing itself to one couple or even something as broad as the whole field of sports medicine. It really addresses our entire national health policy. It is a film of some accomplishment and one that shows promise. I would rate it a low +1 on the -4 to +4 scale or 5/10. It should be noted also that the film has been picking up prizes at some international film festivals.

Film Credits:


Science Fiction for Non-Fans (letters of comment by Dan Kimmel, Victoria Fineberg, Mike Glyer, and Taras Wolansky):

In response to Evelyn's request for science fiction to recommend to non-science fiction fans (in the 02/01/08 issue of the MT VOID), Dan Kimmel writes, "I've had great success with Robert Sawyer novels, but they have to be carefully assigned. My mother doesn't read SF but she likes courtroom dramas. I gave her ILLEGAL ALIEN. For the ritual director of my shul I gave a copy of CALCULATING GOD. Both were well-received." [-dk]

Victoria Fineberg writes, "With respect to your quest for 'Science Fiction For People Who Don't Like Science Fiction,' may I recommend a discussion thread at the Bogleheads, The Moderated Vanguard Diehards Investment Forum?

Valuethinker, the poster who started the thread, is a Canadian living in London, and I consider him as one of the most thoughtful participants.

Granted, most of those who contributed to the thread *do* like science fiction, but you may find some of their ideas acceptable by your discussion group." [-vf]

Mike Glyer writes, "Your entry reminded me about reading Terry Carr's collection SCIENCE FICTION FOR PEOPLE WHO HATE SCIENCE FICTION while I was in high school. After so long all I remember is that it was a great collection, and I especially liked the story by William Tenn." [-mg]

[The contents of this are:


Taras Wolansky writes, "What would I recommend for people who say they "don't like SF"? I think I'd first ask what they do like. Then, I would give one person an SF romance, another an SF Western, another an SF mystery, and so on." [-tw]

Evelyn notes, "The problem is that if they don't like science fiction, one still needs to pick (for example) a science fiction mystery that is not too heavy on the science fiction." [-ecl]

Tata Nano Cars (letter of comment by Fred Lerner):

In response to Mark's article on the new 'Nano' car from Tata (in the 02/01/08 issue of the MT VOID), Fred Lerner writes, "One thing to consider about the Tata Nano: wouldn't a petrol-based automotive infrastructure be less centralised, and thus more resilient (and, given Indian circumstances, more reliable) than an electricity-based one?" [-fl]

Mark responds, "It definitely would be easier to roll out a petroleum network. But as I said I think either would be rolled out if there were real demand." [-mrl]

PSYCHOHISTORICAL CRISIS (letter of comment by Taras Wolansky):

In response to Evelyn's comments on Donald Kingsbury's PSYCHOHISTORICAL CRISIS in the 02/01/08 issue of the MT VOID, Taras Wolansky writes:

I think "malthanatostomy" ... may be interpreted as mal + thanatos + ostomy = "bad death cutting".

For me, when Kingsbury writes about men, it's in glorious black-and-white; but when it's about women, it's in Technicolor. Unfortunately, there are few women in PSYCHOHISTORICAL CRISIS.

Kingsbury, a mathematician, has criticized Asimov for not "doing the numbers" when writing the "Foundation" trilogy. I recall I computed the population density of Trantor, assuming it had as much land area as the Earth. It came out to about the same as New Jersey." [-tw]

Atlas and Eratosthenes (letters of comment by Gregory Frederick, John Oswalt, and Kip Williams):

In response to Mark's comments on Atlas in the 02/01/08 issue of the MT VOID, Greg Frederick writes:

I read the latest MT VOID and just had to respond. I am reading a book about the ancient city of Alexandria in Egypt. This book covers the rise of culture and science due to the accumulation of knowledge known in those early times and stored in the Great Library of Alexandria.

There was a very forward thinking and science oriented Greek who was a member of the philosopher/scientists in that library. Eratosthenes is his name, and he was born around 275 BC. He determined that the Earth was a sphere and actually calculated its circumference. And he was only 198 miles off from the circumference we know today. The circular shadow of the Earth on the Moon during a lunar eclipse and the fact that ships would disappear hull first then the masts later as it sailed away from Alexandria convinced him of the shape of the Earth. This type of ship disappearance indicated the curvature of the Earth. Euclid had already written his Geometry books and they were stored at the Library so Eratosthenes could refer to them for his calculations. Eratosthenes had heard that there was a deep well in the south of Egypt that on one day of the year allowed the Sun's light to illuminate the bottom of the well. Eratosthenes had a member of the royal court measure the distance from that village, Syene, where the well was located to Alexandria. In those days, a court member was trained to walk with a very specific pace so that the distance he traveled could be measured. Eratosthenes assumed the Sun's rays were relatively parallel as they hit the Earth. So, on that day when the Sun's light would light up that well in Syene, he then measured the shadow of a stick he stuck in the ground in Alexandria where that royal pacer had stopped. He used the angle he measured of the stick's shadow to determine the angle that defined the sector of the Earth that the pacer had walked. I attached a drawing to show this calculation process. You can see the same drawing on page 15 of Sagan's Cosmos book. This is an excellent example how ancient people know more than most people would think they knew today.


Mark responds:

Ah, you bring back memories. I think the story of Eratosthenes measuring the size of the Earth was in the "Classics Illustrated" comic of Great Scientists. He measured the earth in units called "stadia" and in a footnote they translated that into miles. I use the example when I teach geometry. It is a nice simple example of how angle translates to distance on a circle.

That same comic had a project that supposedly allowed you to draw a quarter of a circle using only straight lines. It sort of was like a curve stitching problem. If you did it on a Cartesian Plane you would connect the points (N, 0) and (0, 10-N) for N=0,1,2,...,10. Skeptic that I was, I did not believe the bounding curve really was a quarter of a circle. I invented a technique to find out what the bounding curve was and it turned out to be a parabola pitched at a 45-degree angle. But I still fool around with the technique I invented for that. Basically I find the intersection of the line connecting (N, 0) and (0, 10-N) and the line connecting ((N+e), 0) and (0, 10-(N+e)). That will be a point with the x and y coordinates each being functions of N and e. If you take the limit as e goes to zero the intersection point drifts to the point that the line segment contributes to the bounding curve. Then you get y(N) as a function of x(N) and you have the function that defines the bounding curve. Of late I have been looking at curves like the curve stitch bounding curve you get if you start with a parabola and look at all the line segments that are perpendicular to tangents of the parabola at the point of tangency. The curve has an unexpected cusp at zero.

I don't know if you follow that. Anyway that comic book is still paying off benefits for me. At the time you wrote your e-mail I was watching a terrific lecture by Lewin of MIT on the optics of rainbows, sky color, etc.

I think it is not the lecture that is supposed to be that that link, but it is a great lecture nonetheless. I would recommend any of his lectures to you, but this is the only one I have seen and it is not the lecture advertised. But he seems like a really good teacher. This lecture is not too technical and is a lot of fun. You can link to several of his lectures from


John Oswalt writes, "There is a good article on the history of the Flat Earth view at" [-jo]

Kip Williams writes, "The Greeks knew the world was round. Columbus and those of his time knew it too. His argument was that the world was small enough around that he could go all the way around and get into the Indies by the back door. He was wrong, of course, but in a somewhat fortunate way for his backers. The 'flat earth' thing is a canard tossed in by later mythmakers." [-kw]

THE INNOCENTS ABROAD (letter of comment by Kip Williams):

In response to Evelyn's comments on THE INNOCENTS ABROAD in the 01/25/08 issue of the MT VOID, Kip Williams writes, "I remember the PBS version of 'The Innocents Abroad'. I was disappointed, possibly from having had high hopes. I was particularly put off with the conceit of having all the guides played by one person, which killed and embalmed Twain's own joke of calling them all 'Ferguson'. Interestingly, this failed gag is the only thing I found memorable about the show." [-kw]

This Week's Reading (book comments by Evelyn C. Leeper):

Lately I have been reading several alternate histories as part of my responsibilities as a judge for the Sidewise Award for Alternate History. Alas, most of these are not worth commenting on, because what generally happens is that I read the interesting ones when they come out, but keep delaying the less promising ones until the end of the year, hoping that enough other judges will give it low enough votes that I won't have to read it. (If four out of six judges hate it, it really doesn't matter if I love it.)

I listened to MOUNTAINS OF THE PHARAOHS by Zahi Hawass (read by Simon Vance) (ISBN-13 978-1-400-13280-5, ISBN-10 1-400-13280-0) on a recent trip. Many parts merely reinforced the adage that a picture is worth a thousand words--listening to the reader describing the layout of a tomb complex, complete with measurements (and given in both metric and English units to boot!) was less than edifying.

Hawass stresses that the pyramids were built by the ancient Egyptians, not by aliens or Atlanteans. He talks about this emphatically in the introduction. A few chapters later, he refers to the builders, and says "the men who built the pyramids- -and they were men..." and I found myself wondering for a minute why he was emphasizing that women did not build the pyramids. And then I realized that by "men" he meant "humans", not "males". Hawass also emphasized his belief that the pyramids were not built by slaves, but by volunteer labor. He tries to give the impression of freely given labor, but his description ultimately sounds more like corvee (labor in lieu of taxes) than true volunteers.

The biographical blurb on READING LOLITA IN TEHRAN by Azar Nafisi (ISBN-13 978-0-375-50490-7, ISBN-10 0-375-50490-7) says, "She [Nafisi] was expelled from the University of Tehran for refusing to wear the veil...." I am sure most people's reaction is "How outrageous! What a restriction of freedom!" But if you read of a female visiting professor from country X, "She was expelled from the University of Iowa for refusing to wear a top," you would probably have a completely different reaction. (Too unlikely? How about a visiting professor ejected from a public beach for refusing to wear a top?)

That thought aside, I will also warn that the book will be more meaningful if you have read the works characters and authors Nafisi names her chapters for (Lolita, Gatsby, [Henry] James, and Austen). However, her descriptions of life in Iran before and after the Revolution will be meaningful even without knowledge of the works.

WHY IS THERE SOMETHING RATHER THAN NOTHING?: 23 QUESTIONS FROM THE GREAT PHILOSOPHERS by Leszek Kolakowski (translated by Agnieszka Kolakowska) (ISBN-13 978-0-465-00499-7, ISBN-10 0-465- 00499-7) has a very long title for such a small book (223 pages, 4.25 inches by 6.25 inches, and 1 inch thick). The original Polish had seven additional essays, which would made it ideal for reading one a day for a month. The essays are Kolakowski's own interpretations of and thoughts on the great philosophers, such as "Truth and Good: Why do we do evil? [Socrates]" or "What There Is: Do ideas exist? [William of Ockham]"

One essay is "The Nature of God: Do we have free will? [Spinoza]" In this essay, Kolakowski asked, "But can we then (someone might ask), punish people for their misdeeds, if everything is entirely determined and no one freely chooses what he does, but is governed by implacable necessity? Kolakowski answers, "Spinoza says: yes, we can. Just as we kill venomous snakes without asking if they have free will, so, in the name of the common good, we must punish offenders." But it seems to me that either Spinoza or Kolakowski is missing the point: if there is no free will, then asking how we can punish people for their misdeeds (or, phrased another way, whether we should punish people for their misdeeds) misses the point: our punishing them is as much a product of "implacable necessity" as their misdeeds and asking "whether we should do it" is meaningless. It is like asking whether the apple should fall when you let go of it.

Another essay, "God's Necessity: Could God not exist? [St. Anselm]", asks why, "If God is just, how can He save some sinners while condemning other, the former by His mercy, the latter according to justice, if the evil done by both is similar?" And for that matter, if God is immutable, He has no emotions, so what does "mercy" mean in this context? [-ecl]

                                          Mark Leeper

Quote of the Week:

           Do not worry about your difficulties in mathematics.  
           I can assure you mine are still greater.
                                          -- Albert Einstein

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