I agree with you, but think that you are referring to a moral sphere. In more
everyday matters, it's not sin that necessarily limits a country's options. It
can be all kinds of things. It's just like people. What did I do to have a stroke
that damaged the right-parietal pre-frontal lobe of my brain? Well, when you link
all the chains of cause and effect together, it's because I was born with a
congenitive heart defect I didn't know about until a valve broke. Obviously
that's not a sin, but the consequences have sure limited my course of options.
Now, that is not necessarily a bad thing, it just means that my life will proceed
in a direction that's different than I had originally anticipated. Who knows --
that could turn out to be a very good thing.

I'll give you an example of how Canada's having their options limited has forced
us to turn lemon into lemonade. As part of my job, I used to compile statistics
on the high-tech infrastructure of various jurisdictions, so our marketing people
could help market the province as a good place to do business ("white espionage"
-- reading, surfing the net, buying reports, talking to people). It turns out
that Canada actually leads the US in Internet penetration (the number of people
per capita who use and have access to the Internet), we lead the US in cell phone
ownership and usage, and we are way ahead of you in broadband and 3rd-generation
research-level Internet infrastructure. Now bear with me, I'm not just bragging
here, there's a point. One of the sources for one of my stats was a US magazine
("Newsweek" as I recall), and they said they figured the reason Canadians used
the Internet more (specifically this stat was who used the Internet to shop
online more, and Canada's #1 in the world, or was when I collected that
particular datum) was because it was so cold up here we had nothing better to do
in the winter. The guy was serious, and it's people like that who reinforce our
image of USAmericans as being ignorant of what happens outside their country;
even if this is an unfair (even untrue) perception, it's fed by anecodote after
anecdote like this.

Now here's my point, now that I got all that off my chest. The real reason Canada
does so well in Internet and telco infrastructure is because we're a gigantic
country (the 2nd largest in the world after Russia) with a population roughly
that of New York state. IOW, communications infrastructure is vital, and is a
higher priority for us because we have to overcome this big geograhic barrier we
have, given our low population density. Sir Wilfrid Laurier, a turn-of-the-20th
century PM once said, "Most countries have too much history. Canada has too much

Another quick example: the fact that you had a revolution saved us from having to
spill blood, and we negotiated our independence from Britain in gradual, peaceful

So that's the distinction I keep trying to make, but judging from Stephen's
comments, which I take to be caricatures of my own, rather than restatements of
them, I haven't been too successful at explaining myself.

Scott McGee wrote:

> Marc, in amongst some other stuff, said the following:
> > We have free agency but limited options, which is usually how life
> > works.
> This reminded me of a topic I wanted to discuss. In the Book of Mormon I
> seem to recall several places where the idea of being able to act or to
> be acted upon is presented. It seems to me, that the idea here, is that
> we are given the ability to act, and our actions determine in large part
> how well we retain that ability or are degarded to a state of being acted
> upon.
> I get the destinct impression that one of the consequenses of sin is to
> move you more and more to the state of being acted upon.
> There is a strong resonance for me here. Partly, I think, because I have
> a strong beleif in teaching my children about consequences. Partly,
> however, it seems to strike a very strong and familiar chord with my
> spirit.
> Have any of you ever pondered this topic, or wish to discuss it now?
> Scott
> --
> Buttered bread always lands butter side * Would YOU mistake these as
> down (Unless it sticks to the ceiling!) * anyone`s opinions but my own?
>          Email: [EMAIL PROTECTED] (Scott McGee)
>          Web:   http://scott.themcgees.org/
> --
> http://fastmail.fm - The way an email service should be
> /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
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Marc A. Schindler
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland

"The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and
falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark."
--Michelangelo Buonarroti

Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the author
solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the authorís employer,
nor those of any organization with which the author may be associated.

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