Archive for July 2011

Down, peasant

Jul 31st, 2011 5:15 pm | By

Have you seen the Texas prayer day’s site? It explains about itself.

On August 6, the nation will come together at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas for a solemn gathering of prayer and fasting for our country.

We believe that America is in a state of crisis. Not just politically, financially or morally, but because we are a nation that has not honored God in our successes or humbly called on Him in our struggles.

Why do they believe that? They don’t say. It’s a very stupid thing to believe. It takes a huge, complicated, arbitrary claim – America is in a state of crisis – and without even saying what is meant by it or listing the ingredients … Read the rest

The virtue of hmm

Jul 31st, 2011 4:33 pm | By

Hmm. Jason Rosenhouse did a post a few weeks ago saying what things he hates in writing. It pains me to say that I do some of them, and not seldom.

In fact one of them is “hmm,” which I use a lot, as you can see from the beginning of this post. I honestly typed it before remembering that it was one of the items…This is a “hmm” post, so there it appeared, as if by its own volition.

Sadly that’s the very first thing he mentions.

Starting a sentence with “Uhm” or “Hmmmm,” for example.  This is an especially common one among blog writers.  It’s a silly and cliched way of suggesting that your opponent has not

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Still no sign of any humility at the Vatican *

Jul 31st, 2011 | Filed by

It can never again be acceptable for the church to undermine the Republic’s laws.… Read the rest

More hate mail for atheists *

Jul 31st, 2011 | Filed by

“I love Jesus, and the cross and if you don’t, I hope someone rapes you!” says smiley woman.… Read the rest

Loving Christians respond to atheist WTC case *

Jul 31st, 2011 | Filed by

Nail them to that cross then display it. Kill them all and let them see for themselves that there is a God. Shoot them. Shoot to kill.… Read the rest

Debut of new blogging group

Jul 30th, 2011 4:19 pm | By

It’s Freethought blogs. There’s a Facebook post about it. It starts August 1. It will be “led by” (I’m not sure what that means) PZ Myers of Pharyngula and Ed Brayton of Dispatches from the Culture Wars. There will also be The Digital Cuttlefish, This Week in Christian Nationalism, and Zingularity.

 … Read the rest

Preying on the gullible and vulnerable

Jul 30th, 2011 4:00 pm | By

Update: A joker on Twitter pretending to be Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg thinks Edzard Ernst should be sent to the Tower. Why? Because Ernst said Prince Charles is a snake-oil salesman. Well he is! I guess saying that makes me fit for the Tower too, or would if I were a subject of the Crown, which I ain’t.

This week Ernst showed how little his critics have dented his confidence. At a press conference to mark his retirement he joined in the name-calling, agreeing with a Daily Mail reporter’s suggestion that the Prince of Wales is a “snake-oil salesman”.

Excuse me, that’s not name-calling – it’s the simple truth. The p of Wales sells a bogus “detox remedy”; he … Read the rest

Quebec spa detox treatment leaves woman dead *

Jul 30th, 2011 | Filed by

The “treatment” consisted of being wrapped in mud, plastic, blankets, and a cardboard box for several hours with no water.… Read the rest

Edzard Ernst calls P. Charles a snake-oil salesman *

Jul 30th, 2011 | Filed by

A tincture of dandelion and artichoke doesn’t do anything to detoxify your body and therefore it is a snake oil. … Read the rest

Istanbul cracks down on outdoor restaurants *

Jul 30th, 2011 | Filed by

Ramadan starts next week; it’s always a time of tension in Turkey between the pious and the secular.… Read the rest

FFRF will keep fighting Perry prayer rally *

Jul 30th, 2011 | Filed by

FFRF maintains that coercion into a religious practice is not required in order to bring suit under the Establishment Clause.… Read the rest

Chris Hedges is still frothing at the mouth

Jul 29th, 2011 4:12 pm | By

Chris Hedges is as nasty as ever. It’s a wonder he has any spittle left, he’s expended so much of it on people he hates.

The gravest threat we face from terrorism, as the killings in Norway by Anders Behring Breivik underscore, comes not from the Islamic world but the radical Christian right and the secular fundamentalists who propagate the bigoted, hateful caricatures of observant Muslims and those defined as our internal enemies. The caricature and fear are spread as diligently by the Christian right as they are by atheists such as Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens. Our religious and secular fundamentalists all peddle the same racist filth and intolerance that infected Breivik. This filth has poisoned and

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Chris Hedges rants about Hitchens and Harris *

Jul 29th, 2011 | Filed by

Secular fundamentalists, bigoted, hateful, racist filth and intolerance, poisoned and degraded, blustering, utopian visions, infatuation with the apocalypse.… Read the rest

Sam Harris replies to Chris Hedges *

Jul 29th, 2011 | Filed by

“The man is not only wrong in his convictions, but dishonest. I trust this is a consequence of his most conspicuous quality: sanctimony.”… Read the rest

Judge dismisses FFRF suit against Perry’s prayers *

Jul 29th, 2011 | Filed by

If people don’t like Perry’s use of his governorship to promote religion they can just ignore it.… Read the rest

UN body criticizes restrictions on free expression *

Jul 29th, 2011 | Filed by

UN Human Rights Committee says anti-blasphemy laws and restrictions on criticism of governments are incompatible with existing norms.… Read the rest

Breivik wants a theocracy *

Jul 28th, 2011 | Filed by

In his manifesto, titled “2083 – A European Declaration of Independence”, Mr Breivik argues for the establishment of a strict, patriarchal society.… Read the rest

Numerology and astrology booyah *

Jul 28th, 2011 | Filed by

Why rock stars dying at age 27 actually doesn’t mean a damn thing.… Read the rest

Vatican is annoyed at reaction to Cloyne report *

Jul 28th, 2011 | Filed by

The Murphy commission asked the nuncio for documents; he did not reply. Twice. So the Vatican is annoyed about what exactly?… Read the rest

Claiming to speak for

Jul 28th, 2011 10:30 am | By

One strange meme that has turned up in the recent wars is the idea that feminists are “claiming to speak for all women” and that that’s why feminism is so bad and awful.

That’s a ridiculous claim. All political and moral views do that; they all say this is better than that, and not just for me but for everyone in whatever the relevant group is, from the neighborhood to the species. Feminism has always made large claims about what women should be and do, and it has never had unanimous agreement from all women. Of course in some sense feminism claims to speak for all women, but it’s not unique or weird in doing that.

Feminism has never meant … Read the rest