Re: The Poll (was Why the Flood can not be in Mesopotamia)

Stephen Jones (
Mon, 03 Mar 97 05:30:28 +0800


On Tue, 25 Feb 1997 13:56:41 -0500, Brian D Harper wrote:


SJ>I once wanted the "Christian fellowship" of TEs like Glenn and
>Brian, but their sustained personal attacks on me over the space of
>two years has made that difficult, if not impossible. I forgive them
>for what they have said, but I cannot forget it. Brian's `poll'
>for me was the decisive turning point. I realised that I was
>subconsciously afraid that if I attacked TE *positions* hard, my
>*person* would be attacked back hard by TEs in return. But Brian's
>`poll' has made me realise that I was being increasingly attacked
>personally by TEs anyway, so what did I have to lose? Nothing.

BH>Well, I'm sure no one will be surprised that my recollection of
>what has transpired differs somewhat from Steve's. Be that as it
>may, I will take Steve at his word and propose the following:
>First I'll give a list of some of the people on this reflector
>whose judgement and wisdom I trust:
>I propose that you select (publicly) three (or more) of these
>individuals. If those selected are willing then I would invite
>them to send me their assessments of my behavior. I will abide
>by whatever decision is reached.

I don't want to drag others into this and I actually wish we could
soon get off this topic. Brian should not need others to assess his
"behavior" - he should be able to do it himself! Here is how I see it:

1. Brian called a poll on whether I was "abusing the group" without
the courtesy of letting me know privately his intentions first. This
is a fundamental breach of ordinary natural justice, let alone
Christian standards (Mt 18:15-17).

2. Prior notice would have given me the opportunity to put my side of
the case. In particular, I would have reminded Brian and the `voters,
that I had already *3 weeks before* apologised and agreed to change
my ways:

On Tue, 07 Jan 97 20:47:13 +0800, Stephen Jones wrote:

>First, a bit of housekeeping. My last mail download was 218
>messages! It has taken me 3 weeks to read and answer them. I
>apologise for the great batch you will receive. Please don't complain
>that they are late or that there are too many - I agree with you and
>I apologise! :-)
>My new strategy will be to filter all mail with "Steve", "Stephen"
>"SJ" and "Jones" into a separate in-basket. I will answer those
>first before I look at the other mail in my in-basket. I will try to
>post my replies at least weekly and ignore the rest. This means I may
>not see anything posted to the Reflector without my name in it. If you
>particularly want me to see it, you may have to cc. it to me.

I might ask Brian why he announced his snap poll, in view of the
above? I might also ask those who voted `yes' why they did so, in
view of the above?

2. The message was not cc'ed to me and because I was only reading
messages with "Stephen" or "Jones" in them in order to catch up, and
Brian's message contained neither, I did not even see it. The poll
was all over when I heard about it from a lurker.

3. The accusation that I was "abusing" the Group had never been made
previously. The first I had ever heard the accusation that I was
allegedly "abusing" the group was *after* Brian's preemptive calling of
his poll.

4. The poll was really about my motives, ie. that I was "abusing"
the Group. My actual motives in combining my messages together and
answering in batch mode was to *reduce* the total number of messages
on the Reflector. Also, to save Reflector traffic I often sent
messages to individual Reflectorites with a note that it was not
private and they could respond publicly via the Reflector if they
wished. Furthermore I had on more than one occasion apologised for
the number and length of my messages. If I really was intent on
"abusing" the Group, I wouldn't have done any of these things.

5. Reflectorites should remember that most of my messages were just
responses to messages sent to me. Because I am probably the main
creationist debater (in terms of volume at least!), I sometimes have
about 4 or 5 TEs responding to one of my messages. This means that
if I answer every response, I automatically am posting 4-5 times what
any individual TE has posted on that topic (other things being

I submit that if I had been allowed to put my case as above *before*
the poll was taken, the result would have been different. As it was,
despite his enormous tactical advantage at being able to define the
terms of the question with no opportunity for me to put my side of
the question, Brian's poll backfired on him.

God bless.


| Stephen E (Steve) Jones ,--_|\ |
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