Archive for October 2009

Yes You Are Strident, Reporter Tells Dawkins *

Oct 8th, 2009 | Filed by

You wouldn’t talk about a strident Christian, Dawkins tells reporter.… Read the rest



Your Logic Makes the Puppy Sad *

Oct 8th, 2009 | Filed by

Myers on Mooney on Dawkins on communication.… Read the rest



Mooney Insists That Dawkins Has Surrendered *

Oct 8th, 2009 | Filed by

He has become a communicator! He has learned how to frame! Another lost lamb returned to the fold.… Read the rest



A futile wish

Oct 8th, 2009 11:40 am | By

I must say, I wish Mooney would not be at it again. I wish Mooney would go do other things now. I wish he would find other despised minorities to smear with accusations of aggression and assault and bashing and other forms of wickedness. I wish he would do that so that I could go back to ignoring him (also of course because then he wouldn’t be doing the thing which I resent his doing and thus feel compelled to rebuke him for doing). Of course, I could go on ignoring him, speaking literally – I’m not forced to retort to his manipulative campaign against overt atheists. But I think his campaign ought to be rebuked, so in that sense … Read the rest



The center of what, exactly?

Oct 8th, 2009 11:07 am | By

Chris Mooney is at it again, this time with an article at the Huffington Post explaining that Dawkins really has changed his tune even though he explicitly and emphatically said he hasn’t when Jerry Coyne asked him while they were both at the Atheist Boys’ Alliance (emailing from room to room, apparently, as opposed to just talking, but then that means the money quote was in writing, which is always useful). Mooney acknowledges this clarification (though not the implied rebuke to the spin he and Rosenau rushed to put on it) but he turns it into a Point For His Side anyway.

But what’s truly noteworthy is where Dawkins hints as to how this all happened-e.g., he’s got an evolution

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They’re sneering, he sneered

Oct 7th, 2009 5:47 pm | By

Andrew Sullivan really does have a down on Jerry Coyne, doesn’t he. He quotes from Jerry’s post on the Atheist shindig and then comments:

They’re really charming, aren’t they? It is as if everything arrogant about the academy and everything sneering about cable news culture is combined into one big snarky smugfest. Maybe these atheists will indeed help push back the fundamentalist right. Maybe they will remind people that between these atheist bigots and these fundamentalist bigots, the appeal of the Christianity of the Gospels shines like the sun.

Or maybe they will remind (different) people that some of us are tired of theists telling everyone what’s what without a whisper of (public, unapologetic) opposition. Who knows – the … Read the rest



Fill my quiver, will you, honey?

Oct 7th, 2009 5:37 pm | By

It’s interesting to know there is such a thing as ‘Quiverfull families.’

Quiverfull families tend to believe in male headship – the principle, also derived from the Bible, that men should lead households. Feminists are perhaps the fiercest critics of the budding Quiverfull movement. They accuse it of trying to undo the equality and freedom won for women over decades of struggle, and claim that the idea of automatic male leadership is anachronistic. But Robert Sanford sees his approach to family life both as authentically Christian, and as the best training for children to take on what he sees as the moral decay afflicting American society.

Here’s what I want to know: what is that ‘But’ doing there? Feminists think … Read the rest



The Emptiness of the Supernatural Hypothesis *

Oct 7th, 2009 | Filed by

Tom Clark reviews a Biola University philosopher’s book defending supernaturalism. … Read the rest



Saudi King Boots Powerful Cleric *

Oct 7th, 2009 | Filed by

Member of the Council of Religious Scholars
said mixing male and female students was a great sin.… Read the rest



Shirin Ebadi: Iran’s Women Are Not Afraid *

Oct 7th, 2009 | Filed by

Women are well aware that they will obtain equality only within a truly democratic political order.… Read the rest



The Demographics of Atheism *

Oct 7th, 2009 | Filed by

Nick Spencer of ‘Theos’ says that as atheism goes down-market it becomes more like religion.… Read the rest



Catholic Missionary Priest Defends Condom Policy *

Oct 7th, 2009 | Filed by

Wear a tooth-guard before reading.… Read the rest



Why Do Nonbelievers Baptise Their Children? *

Oct 7th, 2009 | Filed by

Because they don’t believe in limbo, yet it still worries them. ‘Why take the risk? It made me uneasy.’… Read the rest



Found objects and bus-flattened treasures

Oct 6th, 2009 5:40 pm | By

Lookit! A blog post all about my friend Claire and how universe-boggling she is and what remarkable art jewelry she makes when she is not busy teaching or doing research or writing a book or picking up squashed bottle caps off the ground. There are pictures of some of the art jewelry that you can look at. I have a sensational piece of art jewelry that Claire made me for my birthday. I made all the readers of that blog post jealous by describing it. It is thrillingly complicated as well as beautiful.… Read the rest



No you may not learn about ethics, you little heathen

Oct 6th, 2009 5:01 pm | By

Apparently church groups in Australia think that if you’re not doing something churchy then you shouldn’t be doing anything at all.

At the moment, an archaic clause in NSW’s Education Act prohibits students who opt out of scripture from being taught anything while others receive religious instruction. At some schools, that means more than half the students are basically doing nothing…The NSW Federation of Parents and Citizens Association (P&C) has funded the St James Centre for Ethics to develop a pilot program to teach ethics to students who don’t want to learn scripture. But the program had barely crossed the Education Minister’s desk before the Government’s religious education advisory panel sounded the alarm. Approving the proposal would require the

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Meet the ‘Quiverfull’ Families *

Oct 6th, 2009 | Filed by

No, on second thought, don’t.… Read the rest



Court Reviewing Berlusconi’s Immunity Law *

Oct 6th, 2009 | Filed by

Berlusconi says immunity allows him to govern without being ‘distracted’ by the judiciary. … Read the rest



How to Make a Turin Shroud *

Oct 6th, 2009 | Filed by

First, heat your oven to 450 degrees; next, place a linen sheet over a volunteer and rub it with a pigment.… Read the rest



Church Loses Fight to Keep its Records Sealed *

Oct 6th, 2009 | Filed by

Mumbles something about its First Amendment rights.… Read the rest



The Dumbest Education Policy In Australia? *

Oct 6th, 2009 | Filed by

Students who don’t want to study scripture must not be allowed to study anything else instead!… Read the rest