: President Bush "State of the Union Address" this year surprised African Countries when he admonished to give billion+ dollars for AIDS related causes in those countries. One third of people in that continent are infected with the HIV virus.
Sure. And when did AIDS start to be noticed as a big problem? The early 1980s. That's a long time after 1914. But the Watchtower has been claiming since the early 1920s that pestilence got much, much worse after 1914. That's patently false when actual historical facts are examined. In the 20th century we have not seen pestilence on the scale of previous times. We don't see 80-100% of a town wiped out due to smallpox, plague or whatever.
: Cancer is still the #1 killer in the world followed by Heart Disease. Looks like pestilence is 'still' part the sign.
Wrong. Cancer and heart disease are not pestilences. You don't believe me? Look up the English and Greek words. Furthermore, cancer, heart disease and other ailments are generally diseases of older people. Why do we see more of these diseases? Because the huge diminution of actual pestilences that kill indiscriminately, but a larger proportion of the youngest children, has helped create a lot more older people as a percentage of population than ever before.
: Who knows how the latest terrorism threats - if carried out - will significantly increase pestilence.
Irrelevant. The Watchtower has claimed that we've seen a massive increase since 1914, which is patently false.
: As regards WWI, more people died from the Spanish Influenza (reported 20 million) than all those who died in the actual war (reported 9 million).
Yes, and what have we seen since then? Anything like it? No. And what do you think is worse? The death of 20 million out of 2 billion? Or the death of 1/3 of the world's population, as occurred in the mid-14th century due to the Black Plague?
: Famine never got better since the pangs of distress started 1914 according to most UN statistical reports.
Nonsense. You're reading only false Watchtower statistics. And don't confuse reports about hunger and malnutrition with actual famine. They're quite different. The world's poor have always been hungry and malnurished. Today they make up a substantially smaller percentage of the population than before 1914.
: On record, earthquakes (including volcanos) in one place after another are still causing 'pangs of distress' upon earth's population like no other time in history.
So what? Their frequency and intensity is the same as always, according to the available evidence. The Watchtower now admits this. But one thing that Watchtower will never tell you: the risk of dying in an earthquake in the 20th century is a lot less than in the preceding four centuries. In fact, it's lower by a factor of four than in the 18th century.
How can something that's a lot less of a problem be a sign of anything? Like I said, if anything, these "signs" are anti-signs.
: Wars have increased in frequency, multitude of troops, and destructive intensity since 1914.
Frequency and number of troops, as a percentage of population? No. And you can't produce any data to prove your claim.
: Increase in Lawlessness (sin) is arguably at the tempo of the Canaanites before Jehovah came into Judgment with them.
The keyword is "arguably". Can you produce any statistics that compare previous centuries with the 20th and show that the 20th is worse? No, you can not. But I can produce some indicators that show it's a lot better overall. A warning: If you quote Watchtower nonsense about this, you'll get your head handed to you -- it's already been thoroughly debunked.
As for Jesus' words, a careful look at what he actually said proves that he did exactly the opposite of what Watchtower and some other lookers-for-the-end-in-their-lifetimes claim: He said to avoid looking for signs. And that's exactly as it should be, since he also that that "the end" would come exactly as a thief in the night -- unexpectedly, without warning. He even specifically stated that "the end" would come when his followers were not expecting it. So if you're expecting it, due to your interpreting events, you're proving to be a false Christian. At Luke 21:8 Jesus emphasize this further when he said to stay away from people who declare, "The end is near".
It's pretty clear, Sherwood, that the Watchtower Society has misled people like you into repudiating Christianity. You JWs very well fulfill Jesus' words that 'not everyone saying to me, Lord, Lord, will get into the Kingdom of heaven." So sad.
I suspect that by now, you're inclined to ignore my last several paragraphs and revert to the now-standard JW excuse: "Jesus said there would be earthquakes, war, famine and pestilence. We see them. Therefore the end is near." But tell me, Sherwood, since these things are either better, or no worse, than ever before, how can they be a sign of anything? If I told you to meet me at the main kiosk of Grand Central Station when you noticed that the grass is green, the sky is blue and young men are lusting after young women, would I have given you a clue of when to meet me?