‘Even if no prosecutions are brought, the Act will inhibit public debate on issues of great importance.’… Read the rest
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Guardian/ICM poll shows 64% agree ‘the government should not be funding faith schools of any kind’.… Read the rest
White liberals have dismissed intellectuals critical of their ancestral cultures as inauthentic.… Read the rest
Parents sue council over refusal to bus Jewish children 30 miles across the Pennines. … Read the rest
Bush is being especially irritating today. No he’s not, he’s always this irritating, but there are a lot of examples of that around today and recently. I feel like gathering a few of them together.
He didn’t get to appoint his friend to the Supreme Court – no fair.
Harriet Miers, the US president’s nominee for the supreme court, announced today she had withdrawn her name from consideration. Ms Miers, who is George Bush’s former personal lawyer, had been facing growing opposition amid questions about her qualifications and claims of cronyism.
Gee, I can’t imagine why. Just because she’s never done any judging. Just because she’s totally unqualified, and wouldn’t be nominated for even the smallest localest judicial post if … Read the rest
Well great. Janeya Hisle of the Pennsylvania ACLU took extensive notes on Steve Fuller’s testimony, so we can explore his linkage of social constructionism with creationism more thorougly. Thank you Janeya Hisle.
According to Dr. Fuller, scientific methods are inherently discriminatory and designed to shut out alternative ideas. For example: peer review. The reviewers are rarely a representative group but a “self-perpetuating elite.” By evaluating a scientist’s track record and publications, the process discriminates against young scientists with new or unpopular ideas. Dr. Fuller said that these same scientists might also have unequal access to grant funding. He suggested that an affirmative action program for scientists with alternative ideas might be one way to address this economic bias.
Yup – … Read the rest
ACLU official takes thorough notes; Fuller says interesting things…… Read the rest
Segregating children according to parents’ superstitions a great way to create a volatile, violent town.… Read the rest
Large ‘faith-based’ trusts to take over schools currently free from a religious ethos. … Read the rest
Human Rights Watch not pleased.… Read the rest
White House bowed to pressure from moderate House Republicans, restored wage protection.… Read the rest
Yale has refused to explain why anthropology department did not renew contract.… Read the rest
Courageous intellectual giant or destructive rhetorical manipulator?… Read the rest
Bush complains about senatorial expectation of seeing relevant documents.… Read the rest
And another thing. (I’m behind. I’ve had all these items burning a hole in my pocket, and I keep having to do other things, so the list keeps getting longer. You know how that goes.) And another thing: the horrible outcome of that trial of the editor of a women’s rights magazine in Afghanistan. Reporters Without Borders, the Committee to Protect Journalists, International Freedom of Expression exchange, are all on the case. Good luck to them.
Nasab was prosecuted for reprinting articles by an Iranian scholar criticising the stoning of Muslims who convert to another religion and the use of corporal punishment for persons accused of such offences as adultery. An Afghan journalist present at the 22 October hearing
I trust you enjoyed that Christopher Hart piece in the Times. I liked it so much I thought I would revisit a few of the highlights, just for the pleasure of it.
The difficulty is rather that all the religions on offer are so patently preposterous, if not downright unpleasant. Judaism tells us in its most sacred text, the Torah, that a donkey once turned round and started an argument with its master (Numbers, chapter 22); and that the supreme creator took time out to instruct his chosen people not to carry dead badgers, pelicans, hoopoes or bats (Leviticus, chapter 11). Christianity, while accepting these texts as sacred, further believes that God manifested himself on earth in the form
Steve Fuller is a social constructionist, a Stong Progamme-ist. He says things like this:
So, what exactly do science studies scholars do – and why does it seem to bother scientists so much? We apply the theories and methods of the humanities and social sciences to the work of natural scientists and technologists. We study them as people, not minor deities. We observe them in their workplaces, interpret their documents, and propose explanations for their activities that make sense of them, given other things we know about human beings. This may sound like pretty harmless stuff, but it actually took a while even for sociologists to come round to it. Until the 1970s, the ‘sociology of science’ was based
Europeans make huge assumptions when they lump all Muslim immigrants together, persistently and unreflectively.… Read the rest
Elements named as affronts to Muslim culture included secularists and feminists.… Read the rest