Sunday, November 30, 2008

COV For November

Hi. Welcome to COV for November.

Hope all American readers had a good Thanksgiving.

We kick off with a post from South Bay Soliloquies:

Which states: I Love Colbert" And shows why, with a video of The Colbert Report!

Next is a post from my blog which covers a case in Australia of alleged lack of action by the Mormon Church regarding a paedophile member

That's it for this time, these are the only entries.

Next edition of COV will be mid January. Please send your entries in by the second week January.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Recovery From Mormonism is now 13 years old

To mark this, an interview with the founder, filmed five years ago:

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Sex between adult males and 14 year old girls apparently defended by Mormon Church in Australian court case

In what could be regarded as an astonishing faux pas, a Barrister defending the Mormon Church in a court case in the NSW Supreme Court brought by a woman who alleges that her step father who was a Mormon sexually abused her.

The Barrister, Philip Taylor, SC, is quoted in press reports as cross-examining the woman -who is now 36- on the claim by her father that, as a 14-year-old child, she had consented to sex with him.

This was a strange point to cross-examine her on, as Taylor would have been expected to know that under the laws of NSW, a child of 14 would not have been able to give consent to sexual intercourse with any adult, not just her own stepfather.

The woman is asking the court to increase the time she is legally allowed to enter a claim as she points out that the Mormon Church deliberately withheld information about her sexual abuse -which it excommunicated her stepfather for- from the authorises including the police.,25197,24665248-26103,00.html

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Anger in America turns on Mormon Church

Many people in American are offended that the Mormon Church put its considerable weight organisational muscle and money behind proposals to outlaw so-called gay marriage in California. Some $22M according to reports.

The influential America Blog covers the building sense of outrage, inlcuding calls for people to boycott Utah, including the Sundance Film Festival.

The story can be found at

"Utah's growing tourism industry and the star-studded Sundance Film Festival are being targeted for a boycott by bloggers, gay rights activists and others seeking to punish the Mormon church for its aggressive promotion of California's ban on gay marriage.

"It could be a heavy price to pay. Tourism brings in $6 billion a year to Utah, with world-class skiing, the spectacular red rock country and the film festival founded by Robert Redford among the state's popular tourist draws..."

(EDITOR: Unless, of course, the organisers of the Sundance Film Festival decide to join in the boycott and decamp to another location? Such a permanent loss would be a blow to Utah.)

A spokesman for the Mormon Church said: "As we move forward from the election, Church members need to be understanding and accepting of each other and work together for a better society.)

(EDITOR: This spokesman seems unaware that some Mormons have been disciplined by local and regional leaders for daring to fail to comply with church orders to campaign against gay marriage.)

The Mormon Church will live through interesting times. And all of its own making...

Here is video footage of a protest in Salt Lake City, Utah:

Salt Lake City No on Prop 8 Rally from Reid on Vimeo.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Ex-Mormon singer-songwriter

Theo Hirsch (Tedd from the RFM board)

Please note as one might expect, Tedd's language is &**%ing strong! So if you are easily offended, don't watch this!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Here it is, the October edition of COV

My exmo book is published. And has earned a foul-mouthed tirade from someone called Matthew. He might wonder why his comment was rejected.

Matthew, you might wonder why your comment was rejected.

This was because you used an obscene word in your comment.

Now, you might wish to use this type of language in your ward building, but you will NOT use it in comment section of my blog.

You really do need to seek an interview with your Bishop as you seem to be holding your temple recommend under false pretences, you foul-mouthed person.

You are another of the tiresome kind of Mormon that decent Mormons get so (rightly)upset about. The "Don't do as I do, but do as I say" Mormons.”

I think that says it all, really!

Now to the blogs for October:

Some very sad news about Jason.

Hi Matt,

Out of respect for Jason (Starbright), I have went ahead and made his blog into a 'public domain'-type of site. People can download as much as they want of it until March of next year. The new company understands our
situation and have delayed the aquisition until then.

The current registration will expire in March, and the site will change hands at that time.

Let me know if you need anything else.

Thank you for your support of us while he was with us.


My sympathy goes to Norma and everyone else in his family and his friends.

Next, something from Runtu

"The Real Reasons I Left Mormonism

OK, I admit it: the problems I listed in my earlier post are not the real reasons I am no longer a practicing and believing Mormon. Here are my true motivations, in no particular order:”

(MATT: Oh, boy! That was very amusing. The trouble is, many TBMs really believe that this is why we leave, the poor souls!”)

This just in from Kita!

My husband & I have started a new blog. It is a collection of personal stories, commentary and news stories about Utah and Mormonism. The url is - I don't know what to submit. Haven't written anything new about Mormonism in awhile. I've been pissing and moaning about the elections and bailout on The intro page is an blog entry from my husband Doc and I liked it enough to stick it to the front. That is here -

(MATT: Posts to COV don't have to be about Mormonism. They just have to be by exmos and that's about it. Actually, they don't have to be by exmos, as people who have had their life impacted by Mormonism but who aren't members could submit posts here, should they want to.)

Next, a post from South Bay Soliloquies

Movie Review: Tropic Thunder

I saw the trailer for this and thought it would be kind of funny, although I'm not surprised at the controversy that surrounds this film and the issues of Vietnam veterans, the mentally disabled, and race. However, I thought this was a great comedy. Or maybe I just don't get offended as easily.”

(MATT: I rarely -ever- go to see films (movies) at the cinema. Maybe I'll make an exception based on this review)

And now, to my own offering

I have finally published my ex-Mormon Book!

After about a year of beating my brains out, my book is finally published.

It is called: "Mormonism Con or Cult?" And is published by The Rann Street Press and is available as a download from Lulu at £4.00, that's about $8, I think.

The link to the store is

The introduction to the book is:

"I used to be a Mormon, but I am not a Mormon any longer. I have decided to write this book in an attempt to show readers why I decided to become Not a Mormon, any more.”

That's it for this time.

But in memory of Jason I will republish here the original exmo blog list that we published on Jason's site. Thanks Jason, you are a real star:

Here it is! The Infamous Outer Blogness listing:

The Freeway Overpass Starbright
Kipona Loke
Enigma's Thought Spot Enigma
Joseph's Left One substrate
Not A Mormon Matt
Engineering ZekeTheElder
Mormon2Catholic effulgent
Sideon's Sanctuary Sideon
Letters from a Broad... chanson
WanaBeExmo anon
Halfway Demolished Kitchen of the Soul Stray Mutt
The Murphy Mafia The Apostate Paul
TragicComedy TragicMind
The Thought Spot DiggerChick
Agnostic1 Agnostic One
Equality Time Equality
Mormons In The Blogspot MITB
Latter Day Saints LDS
ScottishBrain ScottishBoy
From Rocky Top to the Rockies Jonny
Spiritual Rape Spiritual Rape
Eight Hour Lunch Inig0
Trapped By Mormons Natalie R. Collins
Masters of the Context DeCaf
Cr@ig in the Middle Cr@ig P@xton
La's Self-Discovery UT Laura
Formons Eric
Planet Kolob Blog Aggregator
The Sugar Beet Chris Bigelow
Mormon Agnosticism BYU Alter Ego
Rants and Raves Seneca

The Next COV will be in November. Please get your links in for the November COV.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

I have finally published my ex-Mormon Book!

After about a year of beating my brains out, my book is finally published.

It is called: "Mormonism Con or Cult?" And is published by The Rann Street Press and is available as a download from Lulu at £4.00, that's about $8, I think.

The link to the store is

The introduction to the book is:

"I used to be a Mormon, but I am not a Mormon any longer. I have decided to write this book in an attempt to show readers why I decided to become Not a Mormon, any more.

It is possible that some people -perhaps who still practice Mormonism- might become upset on reading some of the points of view that I express. This is my book. These are, unless I am quoting from other people, MY points of view.

It would be illogical for someone to argue that my points of view are invalid or wrong. Because they are just that. My points of view. It is likely that other people will have different points of view. That's fine. I don't have a problem with that. But please do not try to deny the validity of my experiences because they did not happen to you. Just because it didn't rain on you, does not mean it did not rain on other people.

Is Mormonism a con or a cult?

The Society for Indecency to Naked Animals, or SINA, was a hoax perpetrated by film maker, author, newspaper columnist and prankster Alan Abel from 1959 to 1962.

The stated aim of the group was to enforce the clothing naked animals, including pets, barnyard animals, and large wildlife. An alleged debate within SINA was how large an animal had to be to require clothing.

Slogans used by SINA included: "A nude horse is a rude horse".

Actor Buck Henry was asked to play the role of SINA's president, G. Clifford Prout, Alan played the part of vice president.

Abel said afterwards that the group was obviously a con from the start. The clue, he pointed out, was in the name of SINA. The Society for Indecency TO Naked Animals, which was the antithesis to the stated aims of the group!

But many people failed to realise it was a hoax. They sent money in to further its aims (always returned) and people began to make citizens arrests on people for walking naked dogs in the streets. Some zoos became nervous about allowing children to see some of the larger, -gasp!- naked animals.

And then Alan Abel revealed that it was a hoax. But some people refused to believe this and continued supporting the aims of SINA for some years afterwards.

However, this was not the first large-scale hoax perpetrated on the American public. A much earlier hoax was that plotted and enacted by Joseph Smith jnr., founder of the Mormon Church.

As with SINA, there are internal pointers to it being nothing but a hoax. But in all the excitement, these were missed. And there was a great deal of excitement about Mormonism in those early days. The philandering of the founder, secret Masonic ceremonies, the doctrine of polygamy, the death of the founder in a brutal gunfight, the founders secret murder gang, the exodus to Utah, Mountain Meadows Massacre, countless murders for offending the crazed prophet of the Rockies, Brigham Young, and so forth.

By this time the fact that the whole thing was a hoax -primarily to make the lazy, feckless Smith family a considerable income- was overlooked.

Somewhere down the long years the con was converted into a sort of pseudo-cult, relying on the brainwashing of the members not to question about the mysteries of the Mormon faith.

Why did this happen? There are several reasons. The desire not to hurt those whose families belong, heart and soul, to Mormonism. And the fact that some people make very good livings out of the continued operation of the Mormon Church being the main two. Also inertia. Why rock the boat and risk upsetting people?"

Although I have been a journalist for many years, this is the first book I have published as a solo effort. So it is special to me on two levels. It is my first book, plus it is my ex-Mormon book.

Message to you who wanted to know if this blog is for Mormon haters

You wanted to know if this blog is for Mormon haters.

No it is not. But thank you, anyway.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Should we publish COV every 4 weeks?

There are only two entries this time, one from Gunner and one from myself.

It's possible some people are on holiday, so perhaps we should keep it every two weeks? Or would you be happier with every four weeks? Perhaps the 1st Sunday in every month? Please let me know what you think about this.

Firstly a welcome return to Gunner, the founder of this particular feast! (Charles Dickens reference)

I'm back to blogging more on my religious blog so here goes.


Thanks, Gunner! Here is my contribution. An response to someone who refuses to accept that the fundamentalist Mormons are Mormons.

Are you CERTAIN about that, David?

A Mormon called David left this comment on my blog:

"Yes but the major difference between the Church and the sect is that polygamy was revoked in 1890 and the FLDS dissented and chose not to follow the new prophecies. So, no, we're not the same church because they left. They are not Mormons."

David, they follow the teachings of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young. Therefore why are they not Mormons?

Also, I would have to challenge you on your claim that polygamy was revoked in 1890.

It was taught when I was a Mormon that polygamy had only been suspended by the 1980 Manifesto and that it would be reintroduced "in the fullness of time." Along with animal sacrifices in the Mormon temples, another teaching that I found somewhat batty, to be honest.

Monday, July 14, 2008

COV Sunday 13 July

Welcome to this issue of COV. We start off with a welcome return from Sinister Porpoise
"As human beings we often make poorly conceived arguments on issues we feel strongly on. The commenter from the Vanessa Honda pohotography blog is one such example when she claims that children will suffer as a result of same-sex marriages. She also makes a historically inaccurate statement that the idea of viewing marriages as a social contract is a new one."

Now on to a contribution from Blog Happens
Deeper Thoughts
"Tomorrow is Emma's birthday. We're having a small shingdig with her buddies and my family. The Evil Sister is coming over too - we're making an attempt at amends - wish me luck!Want to hear a sad story about that sister? She's a super Mormon. Has four kids."
(Matt: It is a sad story. Made so by Mormonism, I fear…)
Now South Bay Soliloquies
A story of 5k fuelled by bananas and Nutella!
My official time was 37:25. That's really good for me.I ran with a friend from work and his daughter. If I didn't run with them I think my time would have been a lot slower.
And lastly, my post
A threat to the world’s media from the Mormon Church!
Apparently some Mormons do not see this as a threat to the media. As I pointed out, as a journalist for some 30 years, I know a threat when I see one!)

A longer comment

Your blog only accepts 300 words and my answer was 3x that long. So here my is comment on your previous blog.

Matt, you have brought up some interesting points with regard to the Aaron/tithing issue. The one point I would like to address is about self esteem within the church.

The MLM business system in a way relates to the way the church is governed, which is the Prophet or other leaders at the top, filtering down to the members at a lower level. If you work at keeping the commandments or following the leaders, then you are conforming and adding to the strength of the church. The MLM system is basically the same thing.

You buy into a product that has a social network and you become one of the group. This group mentality derives its power through convincing other people of its superiority. I wander if the church would be as popular today if it had started in this century rather than in the 1800s?

The only reason the church has become so powerful is the members that contribute to its upkeep. Any business that started out 178 years ago and is still flourishing today has got to have some amazing business strategies.

People generally buy into ideas that promise a better way of life, if they are unable to figure things out in their own lives. Imagine having 13 million (not sure of those exact figures) people doing the same thing.

Pay your tithing and you will be blessed. The church relates so many stories about the positive aspects of this principle, yet when you experience loss of income yourself and ask the church for support, you begin to understand how the church really works. We want your money, but no you can't have our money, you must go and earn it yourself. There are no dividends paid to members. At the very most you could hope for is a couple of weeks food and rent. Other than that you have to fend for yourself. So where does that leave you?

You begin to question yourself as to whether you have conformed to an ideology that only exists in some peoples mind, because they only want to look at the bright side of things, and deny the negative side of life altogether? Or as some leaders are quick to point out that you are suffering financially because you are not living the laws of the church.

If you were living the 10 commandments and in the case of Mormonism another 10 more commandments, you would surely be blessed. The doctrine isn't wrong, you are wrong they are quick to point out. Does this help your self esteem? I think not.

Realistically no person on this earth can live all the church laws all the time, but only some of the laws, some of the time. So believing you have no money because you are not living the laws of God and laws of Mormonism is silly and practically impossible.

As Mormons you are expected to not only pay 10% of your tithing usually on the gross income, but you are also expected to pay into the fast offering, missionary fund, humanitarian fund and temple building fund also.

This is way above what it says in the bible that Jesus said we had to pay. However, we could also be misled, believing what 250 quarreling Christians Bishops decided to included in the bible in the first place. This whole thing could have been a hoax to start off with, and in reality the bible could have actually put words into Jesus' mouth.

My premise is that we should follow our own head and heart and not follow the crowds, not matter how convincing they may sound. Any organization that takes your money, and promises you spiritual salvation when you are lacking physical needs is ways off the mark. Fear is used as a weapon to get the members to empty their pockets when they themselves need the money.

The problem with the church is that it does not educate its members as to becoming self empowered. The church needs the members, and their money to run the organization. It preaches honesty, but when some members mistakenly paid tithing, is the church honest enough to refund the tithing? In my personal experience this is definitely, "No". So I question, why does the church not live by its own rules and commandments?

In my opinion, the church uses feel good examples when you pay tithing, to build up your self esteem to get you to pay tithing on the basis that you will be blessed. When you question the subconscious indoctrination, it is no longer a truth but instead you have learned to conform to something more powerful than yourself.

I believe that you feel good because you belonging to a group and you are part of something that is bigger than yourself. Believing you will always be blessed because you pay your tithing, is stretching the truth, when the truth is that the church needs and wants your money, and uses mind control to get you to conform. What if you decide to pay your 10% or more to another organization or even fund your own charity organization to help the needy, instead of paying it to a church? Why not become godlike yourself on this earth, without having to put up with someone else's rules and mind games?

The church does not want you to build your own self esteem with regard to using your own mind and logic, instead it teaches you self condemnation, because it wants you to conform to its teachings and logic. It uses feel good stories to convince you of its truth, but if you are off the mark and do not conform; it does not use those same feel good stories, instead preaches self-condemnation.

Feeling good is an emotion whereas self esteem comes from doing. Feeling good and having self esteem is not related, as self esteem comes from true things, and being part of something that is not true can never be self satisfying. We learn self confidence by following our own true path!

(MATT: Thanks Genevieve!)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Mormon Church issues sinister threat to world's media

The following is a letter from Elder Lance B. Wickman, General Counsel of the Church to publishers of major newspapers, TV stations and magazines. It was sent out on Tuesday, June 24, 2008.

Recent events have focused the media spotlight on a polygamous sect near San Angelo, Texas, calling itself the “Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.” As you probably know, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has absolutely no affiliation with this polygamous sect. Decades ago, the founders of that sect rejected the doctrines of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, were excommunicated, and then started their own religion. To the best of our knowledge, no one at the Texas compound has ever been a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Unfortunately, however, some of the media coverage of the recent events in Texas has caused members of the public to confuse the doctrines and members of that group and our church. We have received numerous inquiries from confused members of the public who, by listening to less than careful media reports, have come to a grave misunderstanding about our respective doctrines and faith. Based on these media reports many have erroneously concluded that there is some affiliation between the two – or even worse, that they are one and the same.

Over the years, in a careful effort to distinguish itself, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has gone to significant lengths to protect its rights in the name of the church and related matters. Specifically, we have obtained registrations for the name “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” “Mormon,” “Book of Mormon” and related trade and service marks from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and corresponding agencies in a significant number of foreign countries.

We are confident that you are committed to avoiding misleading statements that cause unwarranted confusion and that may disparage or infringe the intellectual property rights discussed above. Accordingly, we respectfully request the following:

  1. As reflected in the AP Style Guide, we ask that you and your organization refrain from referring to members of that polygamous sect as “fundamentalist Mormons” or “fundamentalist” members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
  2. We ask that, when reporting about this Texas-based polygamous sect or any other polygamous group, you avoid either explicitly or implicitly any inference that these groups are affiliated with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
  3. On those occasions when it may be necessary in your reporting to refer to the historical practice of plural marriage in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, that you make very clear that the Church does not condone the practice of polygamy and that it has been forbidden in the Church for over one hundred years. Moreover, we absolutely condemn arranged or forced “marriages” of underage girls to anyone under any circumstances.

Stated simply, we would like to be known and recognized for whom we are and what we believe, and not be inaccurately associated with beliefs and practices that we condemn in the strongest terms. We would be grateful if you could circulate or copy this letter to your editorial staff and to your legal counsel.

We thank you for your consideration of these important matters.


Lance B. Wickman

General Counsel

(EDITOR: Here is some free, without prejudice, 'counsel to Lance B. Wickman and the Mormon Church:

Don't issue threats to the entire media of the world, lest people mistake you as a clown and the organisation that you work for as an organisation made up of clowns.)

Monday, June 30, 2008

COV For Sunday 29 June

Here is the delayed COV for Sunday 29 June. I am sorry for the delay, this was due to Yahoo not showing me the contents of any emails!

Still, I have managed to work out a way around this and here we are:-

First up Kita Kazoo:

“Mormons believe in modern prophecy. During the cold war, starting with the Cuban Missile Crisis, Mormon leaders counseled their followers to store food and other items for survival in case of nuclear holocaust. I find it strange that they continue to do so when there has been nothing to indicate the need for this now.”

Runtu's Rincon strikes up with the following interesting post on his blog:-

“I came across this interesting paragraph in the current LDS priesthood/Relief Society manual Teachings of Joseph Smith in a lesson about apostasy (I may write more about this lesson later):

As that year [1837] wore on, a spirit of apostasy grew among some of the Saints in Kirtland. Some members became proud, greedy, and disobedient to the commandments. Some blamed Church leaders for economic problems caused by the failure of a Kirtland financial institution established by Church members.”

(Matt: Yes... Church members did that! Hmmm...)
And from my own blog this time I respond to the comments from Aaron
“These are the comments Aaron made on my Mormonism and MLM post:

"I think you're on to something here. Some of your info is off target.”
Aaron does not agree with me. And I asked him to provide evidence. If Aaron reads this post, perhaps he will reply.
And from CV Rick Pancakes
“Separate two eggs very carefully. I use the shells, breaking the eggs in half with a single smack against a glass bowl, you really want to use glass for this, plastic or aluminum just won't work.”
And that's it for now. See you next time with your contribution!

And for some reason, Blogger steadfastly refused to upload the COV image! Oh, well. Maybe it will work in two weeks time!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Aaron's interesting points

These are the comments Aaron made on my Mormonism and MLM post:

"I think you're on to something here. Some of your info is off target.

Yes, Mormons have poor among them. No, we are not all poor.
And (after ten years as a financial clerk and auditor in the LDS church), I can certify that tithing is not what makes the poor mormons poor. That's a topic for another day.

The idea that the church deliberately keeps its members poor is also broken by the fact that Mormons are actually wealthier than most other religions, on a per-person basis. (If you take the top ten Judeo-Christian religions in the US, Mormons are #2 behind the Jews).

Also, on a much smaller point, the Mormon directive on tithing is does not define whether the 10% is before or after taxes.

But you are on to something here - the 'promise' of MLMs does always seem to be attractive to the poorer part of the population in general, and specifically to poor mormons. Why the typical poor mormon fails to demonstrate the same amount of skepticism towards an MLM 'opportunity' as, say, a typical poor catholic is well worth exploring. Perhaps they're just trying to keep up with their peers, the wealthy mormons, or perhaps the evangelical nature of the religion has created level of self esteem and faith (or whatever you'd like to call it) that overcomes fear of rejection.

By the way, the church also explicitly discourages taking state-based welfare and it discourages dishonesty, including with government program. So if you've been in a ward where those types of trashy behavior are rampant, I'm very sorry for the example you were exposed to, but it is not a reflection of the church's teachings or policies, implicit or explicit. People do tend to go astray in groups."

I have asked Aaron for evidence for his claims.

His last point is interesting. Because when the LDS Welfare programme was virtually halted in the UK 10 to 15 years ago, church members who were working for their LDS welfare payments were TOLD by the leadership that they must all go on to the government Social Security programme and get state assistance.

It seems that Mormonism is not quite the stable structure that Aaron fondly imagines it to be.

Monday, June 16, 2008

COV for Sunday June 16

Hi! Sorry about the delay in publication:- This was due to a download of new anti-virus software taking four hours!

First off CV Rick

“This is for all my ex-Mormon buddies out there and for those non-Mormons who've read my blog and realized that they grew up more sane and well-adjusted than any Mormon.

Why are you glad you're not Mormon...”

Now South Bay Soliloquies for the Soul

“I recently had a conversation with my mom over the phone regarding the college class I'm taking online. . . .”

(MATT: And it goes downhill from there on in, as they often do, sadly...)

And next is Fiddley Gomme's contribution:

“Damn, but I was gonna take the sweetest shot of the flag on the front porch with the dusk moon in the sky behind it last night. Into the house I went to grab the camera bag from the sofa table. Not on the sofa table. Up to the bedroom to get the camera bag from the bedside table. I mean, out to the car where I left my camera bag. Err... what? It's not in the car?”

MATT: A similar thing happened to me. With a company camera. Arghhh! Sorry. But I do sort of feel your pain, here...)

And now my contribution.

“The official Mormon Church really does not like it when people call members of the FLDS Mormons.

Well, that's just too bad! For, in reality, members of the FLDS have just as much right to be called Mormons as the members of the LDS church. After all, don't both churches consider Smith and Young as their founders?”

That's it, for this time.

Two weeks time, we'll do it all again. With different stuff, obviously...

They do not like it... but tough!..

The official Mormon Church really does not like it when people call members of the FLDS Mormons.

Well, that's just too bad! For, in reality, members of the FLDS have just as much right to be called Mormons as the members of the LDS church. After all, don't both churches consider Smith and Young as their founders?

And, if one considers the point a little, surely as Smith and Young both preached and practised polygamy, a practice the LDS church abandoned, yet is still fully embraced by the FLDS church, this would mean that, in essence, the FLDS is closer to the church of the founders (Smith and Young) than that of the modern LDS church?

This is the official LDS position on polygamy:-
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reiterates that it has no affiliation whatsoever with any polygamous groups, including the polygamous sect in Eldorado, Texas. The Church discontinued polygamy officially in 1890, but more than a century later some news and Internet reports fail to draw clear distinctions between the Church and practicing polygamous sects."

Well, that's not actually true, is it? There are credible reports of officially sanctioned polygamous marriages well into the 20th century. so if there are still references made to Mormon polygamy, perhaps this is because the Mormon church played fast and lose with polygamy for several decades after the official deceleration in 1890?

It is not possible for Mormons to distance themselves from Polygamy. Especially when their own sacred scriptures (D&C) still refer to Polygamy as an official doctrine of the Mormon Church.

Expunge polygamy from the D&C and you might have something, Mormons. But until then your protests cut no ice with ordinary people, who are not Mormons, who know full well the links between Mormonism and polygamy.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

The NSCFC launches Support & Advice for Existing or Ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses

The charity...National Society for Children and Family Contact (NSCFC) now extends its Free and Confidential service in support of the long-term effects and sufferings of existing and ex-Jehovah's Witnesses.

An increasingly concerning cause of Family Breakdown of an insidious nature is the result of the affiliation of at least one Family Member to this powerfully controlling religious Organisation.

1/ Any religious organisation that separates Family Members using Mind Control via fear of ostracism and everlasting death must be challenged in the best interest of The Children, Family Life and Society as a whole.

2/ Dictating an individual's Human Right to contact with family members, especially The Children, clearly threatens the bonds, unity and natural love within the family Unit.

3/ The resulting Damage is so great that many adults, teenagers and children continue to feel the emotional and psychological effects long after successfully pulling away from such an Organisation.

For this reason we have brought onboard ex-members all of whom have vast experience in how best to face, overcome and survive subtle mind control albeit mental, emotional or physical, which can and does include child abuse and other unlawful acts, the like of which is covered up by Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society (WTBTS) Headquarter secrecy dictates, to the exclusion of the police and local authorities and well documented as such worldwide. Suffice to say, we want to expose any form of child abuse be it sexual or otherwise.

We wish to provide assistance to victims who have been molested as children and silenced from speaking out or seeking proper assistance as directed by any religious authority. So please, if you were, are and know of any such victim or perpetrator, then why not help yourself and or save others also, for indeed just as it is written “the truth will set you free”. Please Contact Us Online or Phone 0870 794 0075

National Society for Children and Family Contact (NSCFC) is a registered charity which believes that continuing contact with a child’s parents or extended family after separation or divorce is vital for the child’s balanced development and it works tirelessly to foster those all-important family contacts. As such we offer free support and advice to all those in need. Helpline at National rate on 0870 794 0075 or at

From someone who spent 45yrs as a JW and now an Ex member since 1999.

Kind regards

Mike Ellis

Chairman: “National Society for Children and Family Contact”.

Tel: UK 0870 794 0075

COV for Sunday 1 June 2008

Firstly let's kick of with the following email

I saw your note for great sites to add that are ExMormon.

Here's a great one for you:

** It is a social networking site for exmormons [dating, family connections, friends, playdates for kids, professional services, classified ads, events, etc]. It seems really cool/



Thank you, RH. I'll add that to the list.

Next a blog entry from South Bay Soliloquies

Teen Alex Phillips puts girlfriend's nude shots on MySpace: Child Porn?

I definitely believe the charges on the guy should stand. Hopefully he spends his sixteen years productively doing something positive to turn his life around. We know his English skills need improvement.”

And next some very special art work from Sister Mary Lisa:

A fantastic piece of art and also “Focus on the Family”, which is the next post down.

My own post is in reply to one of those: “Why do you bother attacking the Mormon Church?” posts.

If these posts are rude or obscene I ignore them and delete them. I can't see why I should bother to help some poor Mormon break the rules of their own church! However, the response in this instance was not in the least ruse or obscene, so I have decided to answer the question in my blog.

And now some shameless self-promotion! The book is nearing completion. It will consist of extracts from this blog and some original material.

At least at first it will be sold as an e-book. I am thinking of charging about $2 to $4 for it. It will run to about 30,000 words.

See you in two weeks time!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

An answer to this is just me

This is just me made the following comment on my blog:

"I understand that there are many people in the world who don't necessarily want to be mormon. I haven't found many who totally disagree with mormon doctrine, they just don't want to live it. I completely respect that since everyone should have the right to choose how they want to live and do what they feel is right for them. I just don't understand why you would want to spend so much time talking about what you don't want out of life. What if you talked about what you do want instead. Like I said before, I really do respect your opinions and beliefs even if they're not the same as mine. I would really enjoy reading a blog from you about what you do believe and what you have that guides your life now."

Firstly, I think you will find that MOST people in the world do not want to live Mormonism.

You say you haven't found may people who totally disagree with Mormon doctrine, they just don't want to live it.

Why would you say that? That they -all those people- aren't Mormons because they don't want to live it?

It is my opinion that my parents made the mistake of becoming Mormons. I simply want to help other people NOT make that same mistake. That's why I publish this ex-Mormon blog. As a lighthouse, if you will, to warn others away from the rocks of Mormonism.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

COV for Sunday May 18

We start off this time with a post from Sideon

Magical Underwear

A few days ago, Arizona Awakening was in town on another business trip. Like the good gents that we are, we hosted him in one of the guest bedrooms. I’d forewarned AZ that if the weather was nice we’d be swimming so he’d better bring a swimsuit, but he said he was bringing something better and that he’d surprise me. When he told me, I thought he was jockin’ my strap but he was serious.

(MATT: And then it gets really interesting!)

And next is my post in which I reveal that my ex-Mormon book is actually (this time!) coming closer to be published!

“Yes, after a year or so of thinking and a false start (an Acer laptop that bit the dust. Here's a tip. Don't buy Acer) my ex-Mormon book is finally taking shape.

At least initially I intend to publish it as an e-book and whilst I have yet to firmly fix a price, I am thinking about pricing it at somewhere in the range of $2.00 to $5.00. Though probably at the lower end of that range...”

And that's it for this time. Somewhat disappointingly, no other blog entries were received.

See you next time. And please DO send something for the next issue which is in two weeks time.

My ex-Mormon book is finally coming closer to publication

Yes, after a year or so of thinking and a false start (an Acer laptop that bit the dust. Here's a tip. Don't buy Acer) my ex-Mormon book is finally taking shape.

At least initially I intend to publish it as an e-book and whilst I have yet to firmly fix a price, I am thinking about pricing it at somewhere in the range of $2.00 to $5.00. Though probably at the lower end of that range...

The book will basically be culled from my Blog, Not A Mormon. Although there will be some new material used in it, too. Not every post will be used, as some are not really relevant for a book on my experiences as an ex-Mormon.

The book is being edited and proofread, now. It is amazing how many typos can be found! And I am hoping that it will be published by the end of May.

I'll keep you updated on the book and it will be on sale through the Notamormon blog.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Carnival of the Veil May 4 2008

Carnival of the Veil May 4 2008


Firstly, we have two posts from South Bay Soliloquies .

"!I went to the California Science Center this weekend to see the Body Worlds 3 exhibit there. There's an IMAX film about the Human Body that goes along with the exhibit, but I wasn't entirely impressed with the film (I think it was something from the Learning Channel) and it's not essential to watch if you're going to the exhibit."


I was reminded of my own mother's homemade mayonnaise by Molly Wizenberg's article, Mayo Clinic last month. I vaguely remember my mom making mayonnaise during my childhood for things like potato salad and sandwiches.

While I can't remember her recipe, I do remember she insisted on using olive oil and dry mustard. (My memory is flaky on the olive oil part, but very solid on the dry mustard part) The bright, lemony top-note mellows quickly into the taste of raw oil on the bottom-note (to use perfumer's terms) and is definitely not like anything that comes in a blue-capped plastic container.

So here it is. Add a crushed garlic clove for extra zing.

(EDITOR: The recipe is on the blog. Visit it and make it. It seems very similar to my wife's recipe for homemade Mayo.)

And now from CV Rick, Growing Up Mormon (That sucked, didn't it? Well, it did for Rick and for me, also)
Growing Up Mormon - The Mormon Uniform

Mormon missionaries wear white shirts, dark ties, a nametag, and a bicycle helmet. That's their uniform. When I turned twelve I received the Aaronic Priesthood and was then worthy to pass the sacrament, water and bread, to the congregation. From that point on I had no choice about what to wear to church: white shirt, dark tie, dress shoes.

(EDITOR: This, however, is a more sucky than most story)

And lastly my own contribution. News that Martha Beck's latest book is to be published in the UK, soon:

And here's one from my archive
Scams, Schemes and Dreams or why Mormons are more susceptible to MLMs than most other people:

Plus a couple of others from my other blogs
It's about Glastonbury
How the father of British Geology is to be honoured in Scarborough.

That's it for now! See you in two weeks.

And please do send your contributions in.

Oh. If any of you have one to send in for this issue, please do submit it and I'll add it in later.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Steering By Starlight. A new book By Martha Beck

International best-selling author and top American Life Coach Martha Beck will be in the UK on publication date 25th June until 27th.

25th June 2008
£12.99 original trade paperback

Martha Beck will be in the UK from 25th -27th June

In Steering by Starlight, Martha Beck, international bestselling author of Finding Your Own North Star, will help set you on the right course to an authentic, rewarding life. Revealing the step-by-step process she uses with her clients to help them overcome their problems and fulfil their potential, Martha Beck brings together cutting-edge research in psychiatry and neurology in an accessible, compassionate, and original way.

Including personal coping strategies that are not yet widely available, Steering by Starlight will help you overcome the alienation that is causing you to lose sight of your authenticity.
Martha Beck identifies three stages along the path to recapturing a satisfying life:

-‘The Stargazer’ helps you understand why it’s so easy to lose yourself and offers strategies for sighting your North Star
-‘The Mapmaker’ uses this newly clarified inner vision to evaluate your situation and plot a course for upcoming years
-‘The Pathfinder’ discusses the adventures that may be encountered as you travel along this new life course

Whether it’s seeking better relationships, more focused career direction, the achievement of specific fitness goals, or a more harmonious lifestyle, Steering by Starlight’s colourful anecdotes, case studies, and exercises will point the way.

Martha Beck is the best-selling author of Expecting Adam, Leaving the Saints, Finding Your Own North Star, The Joy Diet, and The 4-Day Win. She has made numerous appearances on television and radio, including the television show Oprah, and is a monthly columnist for O, the Oprah magazine.

She has carried out research at Harvard Business School, and through her company Life Design, Inc. she helps clients develop their careers and their lives.

It will be published in the UK by

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Cov for Sunday 20 April

Doesn't time fly when you are having fun?

First in this edition is this from CV Rick Nina Writer, who writes on Fast Sunday. Always seemed very slooow to me! fun?
"Let me tell you what Fast Sunday is all about in the Mormon world. It was the one weekend a month that I hated more than any other, it was dread, it was the pain and suffering that can only come from the directives of a vengeful God.

My father never did anything halfway when it came to adhering to the principles and precepts of the gospel until after I had moved out of his house. I hear he softened a bit for the younger kids but I'm not in touch with them enough to know if this is true. However back in the day, when it came to Fast Sunday there was no softness in the old man."

And next one from Eight Hour Lunch. It's not long, So I am not going to quote from anything, but but the title. "Your Doing it Wrong!" And you know, I think he might have a point!

And next something rather moving from South Bay Soliloquies:

It links to a video interview of Carolyn Jessop on her Escape from the FLDS and her book.
Wow. How wield! THIS one's hyperlink worked!
Hooray for religion, writes Blog Happens:

Let me start off by warning you all that I am a whirling tornado of hormones right now. I'm on day twelve of freakin' fertility shots and I am truly amazed that I am still a.) alive b.) still employed and c.) still married. Poor Military Man.
And my own current blog entry takes a look at the FLDS raid and takes a look at who is realy responsible for all this:

And here is my blog entry

"The FLDS story will, to coin an old journalistic expression, run and run. Especially when lawyers for the FLDS get involved. And just wait for self-proclaimed civil Rights lawyers to get their snouts in the trough!

Some people have questioned the propriety of the raid/s in that they offend their liberal sensibilities. These seem to run along the lines of: "People should be allowed to do what they want on their own property" and "parents should have a right to bring up their own children in any way that they see fit." Yes, but not if that bringing up of children utilises what boils down to torture techniques outlawed by International Military Conventions for use against enemy combatants, let alone against your own toddlers and children, for goodness sake!"

That's all the entries for this issue.

See you next time, in two weeks when we will have more about TSCC and Mormonism, the FLDS and whatever else we want to blog about.


Saturday, April 19, 2008

FLDS in Texas

The FLDS story will, to coin an old journalistic expression, run and run. Especially when lawyers for the FLDS get involved. And just wait for self-proclaimed civil Rights lawyers to get their snouts in the trough!

Some people have questioned the propriety of the raid/s in that they offend their liberal sensibilities. These seem to run along the lines of: "People should be allowed to do what they want on their own property" and "parents should have a right to bring up their own children in any way that they see fit." Yes, but not if that bringing up of children utilises what boils down to torture techniques outlawed by International Military Conventions for use against enemy combatants, let alone against your own toddlers and children, for goodness sake!

The people responsible for all this are Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, Sidney Rigdon and the other early leaders of The So-Called Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

It was Brigham Young's decision to move to the then isolated territory of Utah and the ultra-draconian measures he introduced (including ruling by fear) that caused this dreadful situation to exist down to this time.

Brigham Young used Mountain Meadows, attacks on native Indians and guerilla attacks on the USA Army for two purposes. The first to stop the rule of law -of real law- being introduced in Utah and to raise up a fire-storm of fear in the hearts of his followers. Dissenters knew that they were likely to be taken out at night, their throat slit and to be denied a decent, Christian burial.

Their wife and children would be put upon Brigham Young's slavery auction block and sold off to the highest bidder. Oh, its doubtful if money changed hands. for the bill of currency was that of favours owed and favours dispensed.

"You scratch my back and I'll ensure that the next apostate dissenter who crosses my path and needs to be 'used up', well, his wife, his children and his lands will be yours in order to build up your kingdom when you get to the Celestial Kingdom."

Of course, the corollary to that was: "Change your ways, cross me, and the same thing happens to you."

The history of attacks and murders within the fundamentalist Mormon Church down through the decades shows that the Danite murder gang -almost a sect within a sect, if you will- and their descendants have operated almost without pause since Smith founded it.

People who have raised the legitimate question about Joseph Smith "was he a "pious fraud?" need to understand one thing: The answer to their question was staring them in the face throughout: Does a pious fraud set up a secret murder gang / death squad and use it to terrorise and to brutally rub out opposition by internal and external outrages? By murdering people and by stealing the land of followers and of non-member neighbours? By using fraud, trickery, deceit and outright theft? "No," I think is the answer to that.

If you want to study the operation and structure of the early Mormon Church,how it treated neighbours, members and their children, study the history, dark and bleak as it is, of the fundamentalist Mormon church in all its myriad sects and offshoots.

Murder, rapine, theft, fraud, rape, torture and abuse of men, women and children is what you will find. The Mormon Church is a whited sepulchre that is built on sand. The walls are already starting to crack, and the stench from within is sickening.

The FLDS is still very much a part of the official LDS Church.

What is the difference between them? The difference between two Mafia families, one might argue. I.E., not very much.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

COV for Sunday 6 April

The latest edition of COV is here!

First up Runtu with some humour.

"There might be something wrong with your religion if …

You think it’s perfectly fine for your leader to have sex with teenagers and married women, but you tell your children you’d rather they be dead than lose their virginity.

“Singles Ward” is good, but “Schindler’s List” is inappropriate due to its “R” rating.

Everyone in your church was “saved for the last days,” but everyone else just happened to be born in really wicked times."

(MAT: This is freaky. It touches on a subject in my post for this week!)

And from Emerging from the ashes we find Baptism for the dead part 2 (includes link to part 1)

"The interview went well enough. I dressed up in my Sunday clothes, a dress I hated. But then, I hated all dresses. Just was not my thing. An interview with a member of the bishopric, though, required dressing up. It's how it was done, especially in my family.

Over at the church, I sat on the old orange couch in the foyer, my hands planted under my legs as I stared at the red-orange industrial carpet. Brother Hicks, the executive secretary, called my name and escorted me into the bishop's office. I was especially shy as a kid, so "don't speak until you are spoken to" was easy enough for me. Actually, adults had a hard time getting me to answer at all. But these were questions I had to answer, and answer correctly, without guilt on my face, if I wanted the temple recommend to go do baptisms."

Next up is South Bay Soliloquries

A great gig and an approach by a dirty, smelly idiot.

"Last night Spencer Day debuted at the Hotel Cafe. For some reason I thought the Hotel Cafe was in downtown, but I was wrong; it's in Hollywood.

Even living in LA, Hollywood still feels like a strange, foreign city to me, full of nightclubs, bars, and tourist attractions. But I digress.

Spencer found me on MySpace a couple months ago and sent me a nice note. Most of the musician "friend" requests are fairly impersonal, but I felt that Mr. Day looked at my profile and (correctly) judged that I might be interested in his music, then sent a note to say so. Classy."

Easter Explained by Fiddley Gomme

"I got so confused by the early Easter this year and got so wrapped up in the commercialism of the holiday that I nearly forgot to remember the true meaning of the day. Yes, Easter is a converted Pagan sun ritual. No, there's not really a giant rabbit that hides eggs all over your yard only to be found rotting under a tomato plant, weeks later by your dog."

(MATT: My wife, with the cynicism born of gaining a ThD, calls Easter The Festival of Chocolates and Christmas the Festival of Trees...)

And here is my post for this issue...

Mormonism, someone told me, "it's not all that bad."

My reply might have surprised them. I said: "Well, so what? It's bad enough and that is enough for me!"

I have tried to hyperlink the blog posts, but it did not work. Sorry about that!

See you in two weeks time!

"It's not THAT bad!" So what? So why should I care?

Mormonism, someone told me, "it's not all that bad."

My reply might have surprised them. I said: "Well, so what? It's bad enough and that is enough for me!"

Mormons speak with forked tongues. On the one had they lay the "one true church" crap on you and in the next breath they argue that "every church has bad apples" and how you can't judge the entire Mormon church by what a tiny minority of what Mormon Bishops do.

However. It IS possible for Mormons to judge the entire Catholic church by what a tiny minority of what Catholic priests do.

How can this be? Because Mormons demand special treatment for them and their church.

They want everyone else to follow their rules but for some strange reason they do not feel they should be restricted by their own rules!

For example in Utah they want to stop or restrict non-Mormons from drinking alcohol (Word of Wisdom) yet the Mormons do not follow the rest of the Word of Wisdom dietary code, themselves! Yet they want to impinge on how non-members live their lives.

Whilst a Catholic priest who has allegedly sexually abused a child "deserves to be locked up in jail or executed" (probably without trial) a Mormon Bishop or Stake President who is a known sexual abuser of children needs to be given special treatment, as Satan tempted him. He must be given the chance to repent as he has done such good for the youth of the church (including having sex with them...) and he has assured the Stake Authorities that he will never, ever do it again, born a teary testimony, so that's OK, then! No need to involve the police! Phew! Not like with that evil Catholic priest, who deserves all he gets!

And should parents or abused children kick up a fuss, just watch for the threats of "a Court of Love" to "help them sustain the bretherin" including the person who abused their children.

Plus unattributable rumours will start to spread. "I heard that Tina Brown confessed to the Bishop to having had sex with a Methodist boy when she was 14. Well, I heard they found gay porn under the bed of Tim Jones. And I heard that the parents of Billy Rae Smith are planning on suing the church for millions of Dollars, and that's why they accused Brother Fnart of raping their child. They coached Billy Rae in what to say, you know."

Is Mormonism as bad as other cult groups? Probably not. But as I have never been a member of any cult group other than Mormonism, all I can say is: So what? That's not relevant to me or my life experiences.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

COV for Sunday 24th March

Hello. Welcome to the COV for Sunday 24th March.

First off a contribution from Eric

A flashback to my Mormon days... Ode To Me, Ward Clerk.
A poem I wrote a few years ago for The Sugar Beet, an online Mormon satire magazine. I was a frustrated ward clerk in one of the most conservative wards in Happy Valley (my mustache/goatee was a constant source of contention in the stake, causing issues ranging from leading the young men astray to upsetting Jesus). I put some of my frustrations into this quick poem, which I submitted to be published in The Sugar Beet's printed edition. It never made it to the online or printed magazines, but eventually made it to The Sugar Beet's compendium of humor, The Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer.

My days as a ward clerk feel like a lifetime ago, but the emotions and frustrations are still as real today as they were then.

(MATT: Being a ward clerk sucks. About as much as being the Ward Exec Sec. All of the work, none of the benefits. (What benefits??))

And next from Runtu:

Here's my first contribution in over a year:

As for your tag line, try this:

Reality sucks. Try Mormonism!

(MATT: Thanks! A very thoughtful article. Mormonism DOES use fear to keep members down.

And maybe I could try that tagline! Sorry about the hyperlink not working. I can't figure out how to create hyperlinks in Firefox. Anyone got an idea, please?)

Here's one from Fr33kishly Paranoid.

An interesting post. He knows where the Golden Plates are!

And now we step over to South Bay Soliloquies where we read an interest post on running, running shoes and on how you can't stop in life.

And now here is mine (Without the hyperlink. Dang!)

I had a Mormon post a comment on my blog that Joseph Smith was a prophet even if physical reality told him it was not true.

I attempt in my post to examine Joseph Smith's false prophethood by comparing him to a fake doctor. (Actually a true story.)

Well, that's it for now. Easter is almost over for another year and I'll see you in another two weeks.

Why Joseph Smith is not a prophet

Joseph Smith is not a prophet. Why? Because he wasn't a prophet. It is as simple as that.

A practising Mormon called Andrew made the following point on my blog:
"Matt my friend,

Truth is found through prayer, fasting, and study, not through physical evidence.
I know Joseph Smith was a prophet because God Himself told me. He truly did. No amount of physical evidence, however persuasive, could convince me otherwise."

My reply was

"Andrew, my dear old mate, thank you for your comment.

I prayed. Long and hard. I fasted I prayed and I studied for a very long time.

And God told me that Joseph Smith was NOT his prophet. That the LDS church was NOT his church.

This came as something of a surprise, as I was firmly convinced that when I received an answer from God that it would confirm my testimony. But it did not.

Why did Joseph Smith NOT mention the several groups that did live in the Americas? Because he was not a prophet of God. It's that simple.

At times, I wondered if it would have been better to rely on the testimonies of others, not to do as I did to pray for my own, personal answer. Because the answer I got was a hard one. All I had been taught since my parents had converted to Mormonism was,God told me, wrong.

But as I grew older I came to accept the will of God more. If God had wanted me to have continued being a Mormon, he would have left me as one. He saved me."

How can I explain this? Let's suppose that instead of being a prophet, someone called Smith decided to pose as a Doctor of Medicine. He had a fake certificate printed up, that is such a good forgery that few think to ask any questions. Those that do question his status are regarded as being jealous. Because hasn't Doctor Smith got such a good bedside manner? Doesn't he really care for the older members of the community? Isn't he good with the children?

But eventually, other people start to ask questions. Dr Smith starts to prescribe some really bizarre treatments. The drugs he prescribes are often the wrong drug, or in the wrong dosages.

Or he prescribes two teaspoons of hair shampoo for an internal complaint.

He tells someone that there is nothing wrong with them, and it is found out when he collapses in the street that he has a cancer which, if Doctor Smith had referred him to hospital, would have been curable. But now it is too late.

Eventually the medical authorities step in and, at the outraged instigation of a pharmacist, they conduct an investigation. They discover that Smith had not attended medical college as he should have done, but had been asked to leave for various nefarious practices. He borrowed a genuine Doctor's certificate and has a perfect copy made but in his own name.

When this is discovered, many patients come forward with stories of how he failed to identify a wide variety of medical conditions. They had complained to the authorities but had been ignored as Dr Smith was such a popular doctor with the other doctors in the area.

The physical evidence that Smith was a fake Doctor was merely evidence that he was a fake medical practitioner. Not that his certificate was a fake.

Anyone can want to pretend to be a doctor, or an architect, or a police officer, or a general, or whatever. Only a man like Joseph Smith can desire to pretend to be something (in Smith's case, a prophet of God) and then to continue to put this desire into practice.

What about Frank Abagnale? He used falsehoods and faked papers to pretend to be a number of things. Including a teaching assistant at BYU.

Incidentally the story of the fake doctor who was spotted when he prescribed shampoo as an internal medication? It really did happen in Northern England, several years ago. And the local pharmacist, who had warned the medical authorities for several years about his suspicions that the doctor was a fake was eventually proved right.

Rather like when William Law published the Navoo Expositor in order to expose Joseph Smith as a fake prophet.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

COV for Sunday March 9

Hello and welcome to COV for this week. I am afraid you might have to copy and paste links this time. My version of Word will not work as I have not been able to register it, as it refuses to acknowlede that I am online using a wireless modem and Firefox. So much for modern technology. Unless I can fix it in another way!

This from Kita Kazoo:

Here's my submission - This post is an experiment, I am trying to politically stir up the progressive Utah Mormons by teaching them their religion.
(MATT: Looks like a cool idea)

This one is from Corn Child

The last week has been a total letdown. I have this overwhelming sense of dread and anxiety that I just can't seem to shake. I've been flying at 250 miles an hour for the last year and a half, working towards the big degree, and suddenly I'm done! Wham! There's no gradual descent back into reality. It's just over.

(MATT: This happens. The first semester I was a Mormon and finishing the exams left me feeling down for a couple of weeks. The next semester I was an ex-Mormon and we had a damn good party fuelled by much booze in the Student Union Bar, with the booze atradically discounted prices. And I had not a minute of post-exam depression.)

And Here's one form the archives of From The Ashes

The next blog entry is from South Bay Soliloquies.

"I added something to my morning routine today that I think will require a little extra coordination and some practice.

I tend to drink a lot of tea as my caffeine source, but sometimes I just have to have a cup of coffee. Especially since my exposure to using sweetened condensed milk as creamer."

(Condensed milk is great. Try whipping it. It whips up well.)

And last, here is mine.

See you next time! And please keep those blog posts flooding in!

How come Joe Smith never mentioned THIS?

Remote Ontario Lake Reveals Mysterious Ancient Structure


While divers were conducting a unique submarine project in MacDonald Lake at the Haliburton Forest and Wild Life Reserve, they encountered an ancient stone structure revealing proof of life from Central Ontario ancestors.

The history of Eastern Canada is generally viewed in two stages: 1st - recent history, measured in decades and centuries, involving the early, white settlers and 2nd - the early history, measured in many centuries and millennia, represented by petroglyphs, stone mounds and arrow heads that takes us several hundred, sometimes a thousand or two years back into North America's native past.

A third stage may now have to be added: the ancient past, when the landscape hardly resembled the forest clad hills of today and the environment was just recovering from thousands of years of glaciation. Some ten thousand years ago, human populations were not measured in thousands or even millions like today, but dozens, or at best hundreds. Even this handful of ancestors managed to leave us proof of their existence. In a cold lake in remote Central Ontario a possible artifact has been recently discovered.

In the spring of 2005, diving was conducted in MacDonald Lake as part of a unique submarine project at the acclaimed Haliburton Forest and Wild Life Reserve (

Haliburton Forest is a premiere Ontario attraction, well known for its commitment to education, wildlife and the environment. Repeatedly staff of Haliburton Forest would stumble upon an unusual stone structure, perched on top of a rock ledge at a depth of 40 feet below the present lake level. Initially the structure was considered a complex version of a “perched erratic†, those monstrous rocks, ferried by the glaciers thousands of years ago and dumped where they happened to melt at the end of one of the recent cold-freezes.

From across northern North America, examples of compound perched erratics are known, where 2 or even 3 rocks happened to land on top of each other, leaving behind a natural structure. Initially, this is what was considered to be the origin of the Haliburton Forest mystery rock formation. When several geologists and archaeologists saw images of this object - a 1,000 pound, elongated and south pointing rock sitting on baseball-sized stones at each end, which in turn, were resting on a massive, several thousand pound slab on top of the ledge, they expressed doubts about its natural origin. But could the structure be of human origin? If so, how could that be established?

Haliburton Forest engaged the services of an underwater archaeologist to examine the structure. Before diving, he explained that so far he had never encountered man-made rock-cairns, which were stabilised without the help of shim-stones. If he found these, it would convince him of the structure's man-made, not natural, origin.

After a 30 minute dive examining the rock assembly closely and carefully, taking pictures along the way, the expert emerged with his unequivocal conclusion: the existence of 3 shims was proof to him that the assembly of now seven rocks was the result of human activity and not a fluke of nature.

Subsequently, Haliburton Forest turned to the services of a statistician to calculate the probability of 7 rocks falling on top of each other creating a 'structure'. Albeit difficult to assess, he reported back that even 4 rocks creating a natural structure was almost unattainable, but that the probability of 7 rocks hitting at the right time and place was virtually impossible.

But who, and especially when was the structure erected? What was its purpose? Subsequent dives closely examined the structure for any signs of the use of tools, decorative images or other irregularities, to no avail. The thick layer of silt covering the vertical surfaces suggests that certainly within living memory no human has ever touched the structure.

Biologists and geologists weighed in to assist the puzzled archaeologists. The geologists pointed to a dramatic drought, which gripped Eastern North America between 9000 and 7000 BC. Conditions were so dry during that time that lake levels in the Great Lakes were up to 50 meters lower and inland lakes, like McDonald Lake, which were still fed by spring melt and summer rain water, were assumed several dozen feet lower than their present water levels.

And why then, at a time when so few humans roamed Ontario, would they pick remote MacDonald Lake for a stone cairn, especially such a large, elaborate one? Here is where the biologist pointed to the conclusion of his 30 years of research: McDonald Lake is home to an ancient, glacial relic lake trout, which had survived several bouts of glaciation and retained unique features, which allowed it to survive, where other fish had perished.

From his records, he could also add that McDonald Lake, in prehistoric times was not a lake, but part and north-westerly end-point of an ancient river system which, for millennia, funnelled glacial meltwater south into what was then mighty Lake Agassis.

Many visitors to Haliburton Forest who have seen images of the rock cairn have commented on its balanced, almost attractive appearance. The surface of the top rock is almost perfectly level. Many have pointed out the many similarities between the MacDonald Lake stone structure and an artic inukshuk.

The environment in the far north resembles what Central Ontario may have looked like after the retreat of the ice many thousands of years ago. The MacDonald Lake inukshuk sits at the edge of a deep ledge, pointing to the deepest hole in the entire chain of lakes, today some 150 feet deep. At times of dramatically lower lake levels, was this the pool where the ancient trout retreating to?

While many questions remain, it is very intriguing to imagine a small band of early humans, camped on the shores of a remote lake where today modern man camps and catches trout, just as his ancestors did thousands of years ago. The story of the MacDonald Lake stone structure adds a new dimension to resource use and stewardship in Ontario.

Haliburton Forest & Wildlife Reserve features wilderness adventure activities including the Wolf Centre, the Walk in the Clouds forest canopy tour, groomed snowmobile trails, mountain biking, dogsledding, hiking, astronomy, wildlife observation, as well as wilderness camping and accommodations. For more information, please visit

Joe would have mentioned this, had he known about it? Well, yes. And that's the thing of it, isn't it? Joe only mentioned what he knew about. Sure sign of bieng a prophet! (NOT!)

Sunday, February 24, 2008

COV for Sunday 24 February

Welcome to the COV for Sunday 24 February.

We start this time with a submission from the blog South Bay Soliloquies

"I've been having a couple instances of culture shock recently. Here's an anecdote.

I was relaying a story from my vacation today to someone I know. The story involved my grandmother saying something to me in Chinese that I didn't understand.

The person laughed and said, "so she was like, [unintelligible babble that an average American would think sounded like Chinese]"."

(MATT: There’s a lot of that about. It happens in Britain too, sadly.)

And in his blog, Doug looks at misplaced environmental concern. And makes a good point, too…

“It has now been snowing since 3:30 this afternoon in what I'm pretty sure is the BILLIONTH fucking snowstorm of this never-ending winter. As I looked out the window at the buckets of fluffy stuff falling from the sky, it got me thinking about just one thing—global warming.”

And Sister Mary Lisa sends her very welcome submission concerning an email someone has sent her:

Dear SML - Falling for Someone

Dear SML:

I'm in a quandary. I've got a problem and could use your sage advice. You see, I've been married for a long time. Always faithful and true. Never strayed. Never thought I would even be tempted to, honestly. Most of that time, I was in the Mormon church and believed that the issue of marital fidelity was, like almost every moral issue, "black and white" with no shades of gray. I left the church (mentally at least) a couple years ago, and now I see moral ambiguity and nuance everywhere.

I love my wife and my family. But the last few years have been tough marriage-wise. We don't have the same spark we once did. She has trouble talking to me about things that are important to me, and does not respect my "hobbies," which she finds a waste of time. We are more like roommates (with "benefits") than an intimate partnership. Last year, my wife had an emotional affair (EA) (at least I am 95% sure it did not escalate to physical) with a co-worker that she has had a crush on for a few years now. She stopped working with him after I found out about it, and I think she was scared that if she had kept seeing him daily it would escalate. Lately, she has begun communicating with him again.”

SML offers some sage advice. Take a look, see if you can add some of your own advice and experiences.

This next blog post is from the Doc

“Intro - Americans have bought the lies of unscrupulous politicians who are running a “protection” scam based on invented threats - Politicians who promote fear in order to REDUCE FREEDOM so that they and their benefactors can rape the public. I am amazed at the resentment I engender by sticking up for my supposedly protected rights (freedom and liberty) and for the rights of others. It seems that Americans have no idea what America is all about anymore.”

And this is from KitaKazoo

"Intro - It could it be that tattoos are more than just “a way for people to express their uniqueness and set themselves apart,” as Salt Lake City Tattoo Convention sponsor C.J. Starkey claims. With a history of over 6000 years of use in spiritual & religious ceremony they could become, the new symbol of spirituality for twenty first century America."

(MATT: Here’s a question for Doc and Kita, who are tattooing experts. And anyone else who happens to read this note: The Mark that was given to the tribe of Cain. Could this mark have been a way of explaining why a particular tribe chose to wear a tattoo? Just a thought that has occurred to me on and off for several years…)

And now a post from Emerging From the Ashes

“Homophobia in Utah

Visiting Utah has its advantages, like spending time with my family, letting my son play with his cousins, and frequent DAMU meet-ups. But then there's the Utah conservatism, the Sean Hannity on the radio, the church on every corner, the weird looks you get for ordering alcohol at dinner. And every time I'm here, I somehow end up in a frustrating conversation about homosexuality with some member of my family. I'm probably guilty of starting these conversations, to be fair. But then I ask myself, why? Why do I bother?

Yesterday I had a long conversation with my mom and a couple of my sisters about homosexuality. My mom kept calling people who are bisexual and anywhere on the spectrum except the two extremes "not particular" about where they get sex. As if that's all there was to it. It is so totally offensive. She also has this idea that gay people just sleep around with anybody and everybody. She accepts that "some people are just born that way" but thinks that most are just influenced by culture and want to experiment and "get it anywhere they can."”

(Matt: Oddly enough, your sister would have been right if she had been talking about a woman I knew at college. She decided to experiment with homosexuality. She slept with a female student who was openly gay, “just so I could see what it was like,” she said, afterwards. (She was an utter loony who had decided to use her own life as a social sciences experiment. She was doing a degree in Social Sciences) She next decided to experiment with the idea of seducing a younger man, and then deliberately dropping him "to study his reactions." He was also a fellow student in our year.

Both victims of her experiments were of course utterly crushed and devastated by her ‘experiments’ and the lies she had told them, and it cost her a lot of her friends. But I feel she was the exception, and not the rule…)

And now here is my blog submission

“Persecution, persecution, persecution! Oh! You poor Mormons!

The flowing question was posted on Yahoo! Answers, the other day:

“Mormon haters, why do you hate the mormons? what did we do to you?

i want to know why you dislike or hate the mormons. dont give me the stuff about they said this and this and this so i hate them, because newsflash, people are going to say things you disagree with. so cry me a river, build me a bridge, and GET OVER IT. otherwise tell me why you vow our downfall and suffering.”

Oh, the arrogance of youth!”

That’s it for this issue. See you in a fortnight’s time!