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By: one million words, Pete Jahn
Jun 17 2016 12:00pm
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State of the Program for June 17th 2016

In the News:

Eternal Masters Launches this Week: Eternal Masters drafts are on. Info on Eternal Masters is here.
 
July MOPR Promos Announced: The July promos have been announced. They are Spatial Contortion (event promo) and Angel of Deliverance (store promo.)   Not exactly scarce cards, but they do have alternative art.    
 
Wizards Talks Bomb Rares: Sam Stoddard wrote an article explaining how R&D thinks about bomb rares, and their effects on limited. Read it here.
 

The Timeline:

This is a list of things we have been promised, or we just want to see coming back.   Another good source for dates and times is the MTGO calendar and the weekly blog, while the best source for known bugs is the Known Issues List. For quick reference, here are some major upcoming events.   In addition, there are either one or two online PTQs each weekend, with qualifiers running the three days prior to the PTQ.
 
Item: date and notes
·         Power Nine Challenge: Last Saturday of the month, at 11am Pacific.  Next one June 25th.
·         Legacy Challenge: Second Saturday of the month, at 11am Pacific. Next one June 11th.  
·         No Downtime on: June 22
·         League End Dates: all current leagues end July 27, 2016 
·         Eternal Masters: June 16 through July 6. Details here.
·         Legacy Championship Qualifiers: July 6 through July 20
·         Legacy Championship: July 24
·         Eldritch Moon Prerelease: July 29-August 1. Details here
·         Kaladesh Prerelease: October 7-10, on sale October 10th. Product code KLD.
·         From the Vault Lore: releases online October 10, 2016.
·         Aether Revolt: January 2017 release
 
Flashback Schedule:
Flashback drafts are 10Tix / 100 Play Points / 2 Tix plus product, not Phantom, single elim and pay out in play points: 200 for first, 100 for second, 50 for third and fourth. 
·         Triple Shadowmoor: June 15 to June 22
·         2 Shadowmoor, Eventide: June 22 to June 29
·         Triple Shards of Alara: June 29 to July 6
·         2 Shards, Conflux: July 6 to July 13
·         Shards, Conflux, Alara Reborn: July 13 to July 20
·         Triple Magic 2010: July 20 to July 27
·         Triple Zendikar: August 17 to August 24
·         2 Zendikar, Worldwake: August 24 to August 31
·         Triple Rise of the Eldrazi: August 31 to September 7
·         Triple Magic 2011: September 7 to September 14
·         Triple Scars of Mirrodin: September 14 to September 21
·         Mirrodin Besieged, 2 Scars of Mirrodin: September 21 to September 28
·         New Phyrexia, Mirrodin Besieged, Scars of Mirrodin: September 28 to October 5
·         Triple Innistrad: October 26 to November 2
·         Dark Ascension, 2 Innistrad: November 2 to November 9
·         Triple Magic 2012: November 9 to November 16
·         Triple Avacyn Restored: November 16 to November 23
·         Triple Magic 2013: November 23 to November 30
·         Triple Return to Ravnica: November 30 to December 7
·         Triple Gatecrash: December 7 to December 14
·         Dragon’s Maze, Gatecrash, Return to Ravnica: December 14 to December 21
 
Flashback This Week: Flashback drafts are back. We have Triple Shadowmoor. Shadowmoor’s money cards include Prismatic Omen, Fulminator Mage, Fracturing Gust, Greater Auramancy, Reflecting Pool, Runed Halo and Kitchen Finks.
 

Opinion Section: Homophobia

Last weekend, a lowlife shot a lot of people as they were partying and enjoying life. Maybe he was a terrorist – he did pledge loyalty to various radical Arab and Islamic groups, but that included pledging loyalty to both sides in various civil wars.  Maybe he was a radical with no idea what groups were what. Or maybe he was just showing off – claiming to be something more than a lowlife with a gun. The US CIA has said the shooter had no connection with ISIS and other Middle-Eastern terrorist groups (link). We do know he had a history of anti-gay rants. We also know he shot over 100 people at a club that catered to the LGTBQ community. The whole episode is horrific and a tragedy at many levels. It raises lots of questions and issues – but I am going to discuss the one that relates to Magic and the Magic community.
 
I never again want to hear anyone complain that a card, a play or anything is “so gay” if it is meant in anything like a demeaning tone. It has never been funny or cool or cute.   It has always been unacceptable.   It has always shown that the person speaking is an intolerant jackass and bigot. But we live in a world where people are being killed for who they are, and that is no joke. 
 
We have always had bigotry, and people who object to “people like us” loving or marrying “other people.” Bigots objected to marrying outside the tribe, outside the religion, outside the race, and now outside their sex. Society learns and adapts, over time, and those old prejudices fall away. 
 
My personal belief is that if everyone in a relationship is an adult, knowingly consents and willing participates, and if no one is being harmed, then who they love or what they do is none of my business. I only object if coercion is involved, or if anyone involved is not fully capable of making their own informed choices. Does that mean that I’m okay with five guys, three gals and a goat getting it on in the road in front of my house? (Some bigot asked me that, once.) Answer is – of course not. I don’t belief the goat can give informed consent, and people should not block the road, but what some number of adult men and some number of adult women do with each other is none of my business, provided they do it in private and no one gets hurt. 
 
History has some awful parts. Once upon a time some societies thought it was a good idea to eat members of that other tribe, or feed Christians to lions, or burn Protestants alive, or gas Jews, or lynch Negros, or tie gays to barb wire fences and leave them to die.  That was then – modern society no longer accepts any of that. Modern society does not find “joking” references to hate crimes or bigotry to be funny. 
 
Throughout history, political demagogues have blamed the world problems on some “them” that is causing trouble for “us.” In reality, though, there is no “them.” There is only us, and we come in infinite varieties. Accept people as they are, and enjoy the variety. (Note: accepting people as they are is not the same as accepting whatever people do. No matter what their race, ethnicity, creed or sexuality, I am still going to condemn bigots if they act like bigots.)
 
To bring this back to where we started, a lowlife with a gun shot over 100 LGTB people, killing 49. It appears he shot them because they were gay. We cannot undo that tragedy. However, we can take actions to see that that never happens again. One big step would be to eliminate homophobia – and a first step in that direction would be to stop making homophobic “jokes.” Stop calling cards, plays and opponents “gay.” Please.
 
Here endeth the sermon.
  

Judge Question of the Week:

I have been training new judges for many years, and part of that training involves setting out scenarios and problems that teach various parts of the rules. They start simple – i.e. a creature with trample is blocked by a creature with protection – and get harder as they go. The goal is to determine what areas of the rules I need to teach, and what my candidate already knows. And to have some fun. Here we go.
 
Teaching tool here: I have five cards, representing five types of abilities. Please name the abilities.
 

 
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 

 
Bonus question: Forest has a special type of activated ability: name it.   (Hint: not Basic Land. Land is a type, not an ability. Basic is a supertype, not an ability.)
 

Cutting Edge Tech:

Standard: While all the pros were playing in Legacy GPs, SCG ran a Standard PTQ.  The Top 8 decklists are here. I’m partial to the winner.
 
RG Ramp
Chris Foley, Winner, SCG Standard PTQ Roanoke
Creatures
3 Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger
4 Dragonlord Atarka
4 World Breaker
11 cards

Other Spells
4 Chandra, Flamecaller
4 Kozilek's Return
4 Oath of Nissa
4 Hedron Archive
4 Nissa's Pilgrimage
4 Explosive Vegetation
24 cards
 
Lands
4 Cinder Glade
4 Shrine of the Forsaken Gods
4 Sanctum of Ugin
10 Forest
3 Mountain
25 cards

Explosive Vegetation
 
Modern: No Modern GPs this week. SCG ran an event. The SCG IQ  Top 8 decklists are here. Here’s my favorite list this week.
 
 
Legacy: We had two Legacy GPs last weekend. Storm won out in Prague, while   Coverage of GP Prague is here. Coverage of GP Columbus is here. Columbus had the best finish – where a nearly completely locked Infect player (Clay Spicklemire) attacked with a lone Noble Hierarch, which was blocked by Snapcaster Mage. Spicklemire then played Invigorate, Become Immense and Berserk, and trampled over for 22 damage and the win.
 
 
Vintage: The VSL Season 5 has begun. The Season 5, round one decklists are here.   The VSL will be playing new decks next week. The most interesting deck this week, for me at least, is Paul Rietz’s build. Panoptic Mirror?  So cool!
 
Tezzeret Welder
 

Card Prices

Note: all my prices come from the fine folks at MTGOTraders.com. These are retail prices, and generally the price of the lowest priced, actively traded version. (Prices for some rare promo versions are not updated when not in stock, so I skip those.)   You can get these cards at MTGOTraders.com web store, or from their bots: MTGOTradersBot(#) (they have bots 1-10), CardCaddy and CardWareHouse, or sell cards to MTGOTradersBuyBot(#) (they have buybots 1-4). I have bought cards from MTGOTraders for over a decade now, and have never been overcharged or disappointed.
 
Standard staples: Standard was mixed this week. People are still looking for alternatives to the GW Tokens decks, and not finding them.   Cards for the mono-blue prison deck bumped up, but still not enough to put them on the chart.   Day’s Undoing is very close. 
 

Standard Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$23.23
$18.72
$4.51
24%
$17.60
$17.79
($0.19)
-1%
$21.80
$30.09
($8.29)
-28%
Dragonlord Atarka
$7.63
$15.01
($7.38)
-49%
$7.08
$10.01
($2.93)
-29%
$11.20
$15.01
($3.81)
-25%
$24.82
$27.71
($2.89)
-10%
$28.82
$35.87
($7.05)
-20%
$26.31
$29.47
($3.16)
-11%
$10.43
$9.27
$1.16
13%
$6.33
$7.42
($1.09)
-15%
$18.38
$16.46
$1.92
12%
$12.17
$11.54
$0.63
5%
$15.63
$12.62
$3.01
24%
$21.48
$19.18
$2.30
12%
$3.85
$5.87
($2.02)
-34%
Sylvan Advocate
$7.19
$5.55
$1.64
30%
$8.04
$7.70
$0.34
4%
$9.01
$8.53
$0.48
6%

Modern staples:  Modern is a bit more reasonable this week.   Just the normal fluctuations – and some big moves. Cavern of Souls, what happened to you? 
 

Modern Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$26.12
$26.50
($0.38)
-1%
$20.19
$20.22
($0.03)
0%
$33.24
$32.99
$0.25
1%
$32.34
$29.77
$2.57
9%
$29.83
$39.67
($9.84)
-25%
$21.80
$20.70
$1.10
5%
$18.19
$18.93
($0.74)
-4%
$28.05
$28.17
($0.12)
0%
$35.04
$33.26
$1.78
5%
$33.69
$34.87
($1.18)
-3%
$33.34
$33.12
$0.22
1%
$29.20
$30.27
($1.07)
-4%
$85.28
$97.30
($12.02)
-12%
$32.75
$32.11
$0.64
2%
$37.34
$35.28
$2.06
6%
$28.08
$29.98
($1.90)
-6%
$51.34
$51.47
($0.13)
0%
$15.51
$15.68
($0.17)
-1%
$15.63
$17.77
($2.14)
-12%
$37.49
$38.81
($1.32)
-3%

Legacy and Vintage: Legacy and Vintage are mixed this week, but down overall. People may have been practicing for the Legacy GPs, and now that they are over, people are trading their Legacy cards back in. Maybe.        
 

Legacy / Vintage Cards
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
$48.92
$49.75
($0.83)
-2%
$131.52
$142.41
($10.89)
-8%
$11.19
$12.66
($1.47)
-12%
$23.56
$24.17
($0.61)
-3%
$39.36
$40.56
($1.20)
-3%
$39.30
$38.58
$0.72
2%
$24.49
$27.47
($2.98)
-11%
$47.37
$45.50
$1.87
4%
$51.37
$53.71
($2.34)
-4%
$84.86
$84.86
$0.00
0%
$42.82
$44.77
($1.95)
-4%
$61.31
$65.73
($4.42)
-7%
$189.41
$205.10
($15.69)
-8%
$61.63
$57.41
$4.22
7%
$51.85
$51.73
$0.12
0%
$36.92
$37.41
($0.49)
-1%
$55.03
$59.07
($4.04)
-7%

Set Redemption: You can redeem complete sets on MTGO. You need to purchase a redemption voucher from the store for $25. During the next downtime, Wizards removes a complete set from your account and sends you the same set in paper.  
 

Complete Set
Price
Last Week
Change
% Change
Battle for Zendikar
$73.66
$78.17
($4.51)
-6%
Dragons of Tarkir
$109.79
$126.60
($16.81)
-13%
Magic Origins
$121.82
$131.11
($9.29)
-7%
Oath of the Gatewatch
$128.87
$122.86
$6.01
5%
Shadows over Innistrad
$92.42
$86.02
$6.40
7%

The Good Stuff:

The following is a list of all the non-promo, non-foil cards on MTGO that retail for more than $25 per card.  These are the big ticket items in the world of MTGO. Rishadan Port is back under $200 each, but this list is still ridiculous. 
 

Name
Set
Rarity
Price
Rishadan Port
 MM
Rare
$ 189.41
Black Lotus
 VMA
Bonus
$ 131.52
Liliana of the Veil
 ISD
Mythic Rare
$ 85.28
Misdirection
 MM
Rare
$ 84.86
Show and Tell
 UZ
Rare
$ 61.63
Mox Sapphire
 VMA
Bonus
$ 61.31
Wasteland
 TPR
Rare
$ 58.82
Wasteland
 TE
Uncommon
$ 55.03
Tarmogoyf
 MMA
Mythic Rare
$ 53.50
Tarmogoyf
 MM2
Mythic Rare
$ 53.37
City of Traitors
 EX
Rare
$ 52.86
City of Traitors
 TPR
Rare
$ 52.16
Tangle Wire
 NE
Rare
$ 51.85
Infernal Tutor
 DIS
Rare
$ 51.37
Tarmogoyf
 FUT
Rare
$ 51.34
Ancestral Recall
 VMA
Bonus
$ 48.92
Gaea's Cradle
 UZ
Rare
$ 47.37
Lion's Eye Diamond
 MI
Rare
$ 43.70
Mox Jet
 VMA
Bonus
$ 42.82
Underground Sea
 ME2
Rare
$ 40.37
Force of Will
 MED
Rare
$ 40.13
Underground Sea
 ME4
Rare
$ 39.53
Exploration
 UZ
Rare
$ 39.36
Food Chain
 MM
Rare
$ 39.30
Volcanic Island
 ME4
Rare
$ 37.72
Voice of Resurgence
 DGM
Mythic Rare
$ 37.49
Scalding Tarn
 ZEN
Rare
$ 37.34
Time Walk
 VMA
Bonus
$ 36.92
Underground Sea
 VMA
Rare
$ 36.80
Containment Priest
 PZ1
Rare
$ 36.42
Containment Priest
 C14
Rare
$ 36.25
Mox Emerald
 VMA
Bonus
$ 36.12
Volcanic Island
 ME3
Rare
$ 35.75
Griselbrand
 AVR
Mythic Rare
$ 35.04
Mox Pearl
 VMA
Bonus
$ 33.82
Grove of the Burnwillows
 FUT
Rare
$ 33.69
Volcanic Island
 VMA
Rare
$ 33.61
Mox Ruby
 VMA
Bonus
$ 33.59
Horizon Canopy
 FUT
Rare
$ 33.34
Blood Moon
 MMA
Rare
$ 33.24
Batterskull
 NPH
Mythic Rare
$ 33.24
Blood Moon
 9ED
Rare
$ 33.10
Mox Opal
 SOM
Mythic Rare
$ 33.10
Mox Opal
 MM2
Mythic Rare
$ 32.75
Blood Moon
 8ED
Rare
$ 32.34
Ensnaring Bridge
 ST
Rare
$ 31.89
Cavern of Souls
 AVR
Rare
$ 29.83
Lion's Eye Diamond
 VMA
Mythic Rare
$ 29.60
Inkmoth Nexus
 MBS
Rare
$ 29.20
Celestial Colonnade
 WWK
Rare
$ 29.00
Jace, Vryn's Prodigy
 ORI
Mythic Rare
$ 28.82
Ensnaring Bridge
 7E
Rare
$ 28.74
Verdant Catacombs
 ZEN
Rare
$ 28.50
Scapeshift
 MOR
Rare
$ 28.08
Ensnaring Bridge
 8ED
Rare
$ 28.05
Unmask
 MM
Rare
$ 27.22
Ancestral Vision
 DD2
Rare
$ 26.84
Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet
 OGW
Mythic Rare
$ 26.31
Ancestral Vision
 TSP
Rare
$ 26.12
Undiscovered Paradise
 VI
Rare
$ 25.89
Mox Diamond
 ST
Rare
$ 25.80
True-Name Nemesis
 C13
Rare
$ 25.74
Mox Diamond
 TPR
Mythic Rare
$ 25.41
True-Name Nemesis
 PZ1
Mythic Rare
$ 25.35

The big number is the retail price of a playset (4 copies) of every card available on MTGO. Assuming you bought the least expensive versions available, the cost of owning a playset of every card on MTGO is $ 27,650.  That’s down about $230 from last week’s number.
 

Weekly Highlights:

Nothing exciting this week. I did manage to log on to MTGO one evening this week, after a long, long day. I logged in, fired up the league I was in, checked out my deck and promptly fell asleep waiting for a match. I can’t blame that on a long wait for a match – I blame that on all the 14 hour days. Bah.   Still, having played no Magic at all in the last two weeks does keep the weekly highlights short, which is totally not the goal.
 
PRJ
 
“One Million Words” and “3MWords” on MTGO
 
This series is an ongoing tribute to Erik “Hamtastic” Friborg.
 
HammyBot Super Sale: HammyBot was set up to sell off Erik Friborg’s collection, with all proceeds going to his wife and son. So far, HammyBot has raised over $8,000, but there are a lot of cards left in the collection. Those cards are being sold at MTGOTrader’s Buy Price.  
 
 

Answer to the Judge Question of the Week:

I have five cards, representing five types of abilities. Please name the abilities. Bonus question: what type of activated ability does a Forest have?
 
 

 
 
 
 
 

 

 
 

 
The abilities are:
·         Always Watching has a static ability. Static abilities just happen. 
·         Avacynian Missionaries has a triggered ability. Triggered abilities have the word “when,” “whenever,” or “at.”
·         Dauntless Cathar has an activated ability. Activated abilities always begin with the cost, followed by a colon.
·         Dissension in the Ranks has a spell ability. Yes, it is a real thing. Yes, including it is almost cheating. 
·         Jace has a loyalty ability. It’s a special subset of activated ability.
 
Forest, and other basic lands, have mana abilities. This is a type of activated ability that creates mana.   Not all abilities that create mana are mana abilities (e.g. triggered abilities like Carnival of Souls and spells like Dark Ritual create mana, but are not “mana abilities”.) The difference is more than just corner case stuff – mana abilities do not use the stack and cannot be countered or responded to. 

 

22 Comments

I love Infect decks, but I'd by Bazaar of Baghdad at Fri, 06/17/2016 - 12:09
Bazaar of Baghdad's picture

I love Infect decks, but I'd say what the Prague Storm player did for a finish against a near certain lockout was even more amazing.

Great opinion section, and by ricklongo at Fri, 06/17/2016 - 21:18
ricklongo's picture
5

Great opinion section, and I'm truly surprised by the bigotry in the Facebook comments (although perhaps I shouldn't be). Seeing those people try to justify their hatred by claiming that a condemnation of prejudice is "taking a moral high ground", or citing "judeo-christian values" that leads to "decent people"... it's almost too much. Funny and sad at the same time.

Yeah.. by Elbinac at Sat, 06/18/2016 - 03:56
Elbinac's picture

I'd be more impressed with religious values if there wasn't an extensive list of atrocious things done in the name of each of them.
There aren't exemptions from that either, all have outliers to any extreme.

Have heard of any Jedi by Paul Leicht at Sat, 06/18/2016 - 04:48
Paul Leicht's picture

Have heard of any Jedi atrocities...oh wait. nvm. Real world analogy though maybe American Indian faiths?

The destruction of the Temple by AJ_Impy at Sat, 06/18/2016 - 06:57
AJ_Impy's picture

The destruction of the Temple was an inside job!

Atrocious Things... by Fred1160 at Sun, 06/19/2016 - 19:26
Fred1160's picture

Atheists haven't had clean hands, either. Stalin, Pol Pot, Mao,... They hated religion and millions of people died because of them. The root cause of "atrocious things" is people. There are bad people in all walks of life and all pursuits.
It reminds me of the story of the guy who said he didn't want to go to church because of all the bad people there. His friend told him that if he wanted to avoid bad people then he should stay home because there are bad people at school, at work, at Walmart, at the doctor's office, etc., etc.

The examples you cite didn't by KingRitz at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 11:55
KingRitz's picture

The examples you cite generally didn't kill people because of or in the name of atheism. Nearly all of Pete's examples did kill people because and in the name of religion. It's not a good analogy.

What about the 58 million by Bazaar of Baghdad at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 14:26
Bazaar of Baghdad's picture

What about the 58 million Americans aborted since Roe (1972)? The vast majority of those have been definitely sacrificed at the altars of hedonism or materialism.

You are implying something by Paul Leicht at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 14:51
Paul Leicht's picture

You are implying something unproven: namely that aborted fetuses are intelligent and people; Not merely protoplasm being formed into eventual people. Even among the religious this is a controversial and much debated but totally unproven concept.

For the record, I have NEVER met a woman who aborted a fetus who did so because they were simply hedonists who were dealing with an inconvenience. Every single one I have met had both regrets and relief because they were not prepared to raise the resulting child if they carried to term. Particularly those who were forcefully impregnated. Not to mention the not inconsiderable health risks to some.

Also do you have some kind of actual corroboration of that number or is it merely a guesstimate?

Finally, this whole line of tit-for-tat reasoning is wrong. Just because religious nuts kill people does not make all religious people nuts or killers any more than atheist heads of state represent atheists when they are committing atrocities.

Quite a gamble to risk... by drinkard at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 15:40
drinkard's picture

So your argument is because science, which is a radically different study every twenty years, hasn't officially named a fetus an intelligent person, abortion is ok? You're making quite a gamble there: that when science does declare it a person or not, you're that sure that scientists will say it's not and all these abortions will just have been okay.

Fetuses are scientifically proven organisms. They respond to stimuli, consume energy, reproduce cells using a genetic code, create wastes, move. All of these are functions of living things, not growths or tumors. There is no characteristic of a living thing that changes in and out of the womb for a fetus. If it is a living thing (which is the definition of an organism), is your argument that it is not intelligent, so it's okay to kill them? That's a dangerous logical precedent. Is your argument that the fetus is not human but some other animal and evolves into a human upon delivery?

I'm leaving religion, homosexuality, etc. out of this discussion intentionally, even though I know that is the context. Abortion is not intrinsically a religious argument. Take AR-15s out of homes, make them illegal for purchase, remove the use of "gay" as a pejorative, allow gays to marry and sell them cake, all that stuff, but please stop promoting the murder of the innocent, unborn, living babies, especially with the argument "we don't know yet whether they are living and it is not okay or unliving and it is okay."

As to whether or not fetuses by Paul Leicht at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 16:22
Paul Leicht's picture

As to whether or not fetuses are intelligent that is a far cry from stating they are living tissue. Much of your body is living long after you die. Would you consider cremation then an immoral act (all other reasons why it might be, aside)?

I don't agree with "abortion is murder" (that is a moral judgment). It may be wrong (I can't decide for others in that case) but it may just be the dissolution of life that never was fated to be sentient.

We might as well call all killing of life murder and do away with antibiotics, chemical sanitizers and fly/bug spray if the fact that it is living is the test.

If however, and this is key to what I WAS saying: you could prove definitively that fetuses were intelligent, THAT imho would be murder (whether legal or not) and since we haven't and as far as I can tell, can't prove it, the default is: protoplasm. No more of consequence than getting a mole removed or a fungus infection killed via anti-fungal creme.

The whole religious aspect is actually a key argument about whether abortion should be legal or not. The religious argument isn't at all about intelligence but about soul. Those who favor the "pro-life" stance argue that conception creates a soul that is housed within the protoplasm that eventually forms a baby in the uterus.

Those who favor the pro-choice stance don't consider that to be relevant to the discussion at all but do tend to err on the side of proven data because how do we measure a soul or it's intrinsic value?

Whereas a mother's concern for her own health, circumstance and well being are real and in some cases quite immediate.

Personally I don't promote abortion. I think that is something each mother must decide for herself and as a male I will never (fortunately) be placed in such a position to make such a terrible choice. If I did have to make such a choice I don't know how I would choose. I would not expect a government entity to make that decision for me.

So please be to clear: I am not promoting "murder of innocent ... babies" (How very nasty minded of you, that you would accuse someone of that after one post!) I am as a rationalist, a progressive and an agnostic, promoting self-determination and choice without need of government consent. Until such time anyway as we can more properly ascertain harm greater than that threatened to the mother who does not abort her fetus.

Thank you so much Paul by KingRitz at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 23:05
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Thank you so much Paul Leicht. You're exactly 100% right on all counts and saved me from having to type all of that up and wade into the morass.

There are plenty of atheists by drinkard at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 16:59
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There are plenty of atheists and humanists against abortion. The fetus is a living human with many differences from fungi, skin cells, and moles. If you poke a mole, it doesn't squirm. None of these differences are unique to life outside the womb. This is why the soul is left out of the discussion.

If you poke an earthworm it by Paul Leicht at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 17:35
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If you poke an earthworm it squirms as well. If you poke a plant it responds even if you don't see the response Living things interact with the universe around them. Some more obviously than others. Being living and or alive does not mean something is automatically sacrosanct and that it is morally reprehensible to kill them.

Just saw a young hawk (maybe a hand span wide at full wing), take down a baby Bluejay and then fly off being pursued by two adult Bluejays. (The hawk got away with its prey.) None of the above birds fit the usual definition of sentient. Though it would not be hard to anthropomorphize the scene to make them seem so.

The point I was making about 'soul' is that, while I disagree with the religious argument about soul, I can't disprove it anymore than we can prove or disprove fetuses are intelligent. Intelligence is something easily discernible in a new born even if it is born with defects and diseases. The same can't be said of a fetus even 'in vitro'.

As soon as it is provable that fetuses are intelligent, I will be against abortions. That still won't sway me from my philosophy that it is a woman's choice what to do with her body. No matter how disgusted others may be by those choices.

Only a rationalist could come by drinkard at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 18:45
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Only a rationalist could come up with something so irrational as the product of human reproduction is not a human. All births, including failed abortion attempts, prove that the fetus is a human, and we know by its processes that it is living. Abortion is the termination of human life. I may not have a uterus, but the mother doesn't have her fetus's heartbeat, either. That heartbeat belongs to a different body.

Ad hominem does not really by Paul Leicht at Tue, 06/21/2016 - 01:21
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Ad hominem does not really strengthen your argument there. And it is clear we have reached an impasse. I won't respond in kind. Just a reminder "NO" is not a proper rebuttal.

So, just be nice, right? by ComixWriter at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 17:05
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5

In addition to event timelines, win/loss records of some format-specific decks, price listings, and judicial musings over card abilities, a well-known and prolific writer of things MTG asks us to be kinder.

...and then the comments section blew up, mostly about the request to be kinder with each other.

Please help me understand what happened. This is a safe website, right? We can have civil discussions, right?

No site on the internet is by Paul Leicht at Mon, 06/20/2016 - 17:36
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No site on the internet is 100% safe. Joshua does a pretty good job of weeding out the worst offenders. As for civil discourse I am doing my part I think. Please let me know if I have strayed over the line. As to what happened, Pete touched a nerve. And imho good for him. About time we as a community talk about some of this stuff. Civilly of course. We are Brethren and Sisters in this game and in life even if we don't acknowledge it.

I haven't seen anything that by JXClaytor at Tue, 06/21/2016 - 00:49
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I haven't seen anything that has really crossed any lines yet. It's been for the most part civil. I'm happy about that.

I was disappointed with the by Sysco at Thu, 06/30/2016 - 18:42
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I was disappointed with the opinion section (which is not a big deal because there is no expectation that I should be made "happy" with the opinion section!). I certainly have no problem with anyone sharing their opinion, however lets not obfuscate facts while trying to support your opinion.

Specifically I am talking about the statement "Maybe he was a terrorist". We don't have to wonder if "maybe" he might be, we have the killer himself letting us know the answer. There is no need to wonder about it.

Also, I'd like to state some facts regarding abortion (which is a shame in some way to be discussing this on a MTGO site...). I realize it is legal to kill an unborn baby (or fetus if you prefer) in the USA, and I know there are people who are just fine with it. Regardless of which side you are on or what you want to call it, the fact is the baby/fetus has arms, legs, eyes, nose, mouth, ears, fingerprints and a beating heart. It is also a fact that an abortion stops this beating heart.

For those that would like to claim abortions are OK, I suggest you find the video that shows random people on the street that are shown a video of what actually happens during an abortion. 95% of the people that were OK with abortion before they watched the video changed their minds and said "no", it is not OK. Just some food for thought.

Everyone is entitled to their by Paul Leicht at Thu, 06/30/2016 - 19:06
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Everyone is entitled to their opinion. They are not subject to "right" or "wrong" the same way facts are. :D Also people are subject and susceptible to emotional fabrications. That does not make what they are seeing or hearing fact (cf the completely debunked and utterly deceitful videos of a year or so ago, regarding Planned Parenthood.) The stimuli do not need to be what they appear to be to invoke an involuntary and often illogical response. Man on the street style videos are notorious for that reason.

Invoking the vegan battlecry "beef is murder!" for instance is just as visceral to many if you follow it up with images of a slaughterhouse in operation. Doesn't actually mean they have the moral high ground.

Cavern of Souls by MichelleWong at Fri, 07/01/2016 - 03:28
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I used to stand up to defend the life of the unborn, but after years of reflection I discovered that there is no credible evidence that souls exist. Cells exist. Brains exist. Not souls. Sad but true.

And when those human embryonic cells are less than 3 weeks old, then those cells are not yet human persons in my personal opinion.

I wish there was such a thing as a "Cavern of Souls" where we could all dwell happily for all eternity as a blissful community of souls, however that exists only in fantasy games and fantasy novels (otherwise known as holy books). The only cavern of souls which exists, is the one where you choose your creature type, then you smile at your blue opponent and say "Try to counter THIS please!!"