The real danger to American democracy is the methodical hollowing out of – nearly everything.… Read the rest
All entries by this author
Many Christians think homosexuality is a gift of God. Admittedly, some don’t think so very loudly.… Read the rest
Must preserve freedom of expression and criminalize concrete incitement, Frattini said opaquely.… Read the rest
International Committee Against Execution congratulates all those who have helped save Nazanin’s life.… Read the rest
Five judges reviewed her case, and all admitted that what Fatehi did was only self defense.… Read the rest
Look at this leering little pill. Look at that ineffable smirk. Well naturally, she’s got her picture in the paper, and she’s been given a chance to set up as the new fun thing to be, a Martyr for her Faith. Of course she’s smirking. She must have been beside herself with joy and excitement when a teacher told her to take off the nasty little necklace with torture-execution emblem. She’s probably been waiting to be told that for weeks, wondering what was taking everyone so long. Mind you, she was allowed to wear the same revolting thing as a lapel badge if she wanted to, the pious little creep, but no, that would interfere with the martyrdom-pose, so … Read the rest
Tears, shock, right to wear cross, other religions, why, determined, even if, symbol of her faith.… Read the rest
And hire a PR flack to delete criticism from Wikipedia entry. Naughty.… Read the rest
Odd that a Labour government promotes an industry where the odds are stacked in management’s favour.… Read the rest
Something W K C Guthrie said about Socrates set off a train of thought.
[S]ince no one will try to find out what constitutes right action, or what is the real meaning of freedom or justice, if he thinks he knows it already, the first task was to convince others too of their ignorance.
True enough, probably – unless she already thinks that things keep on being worth thinking about even if she does think she knows something about them already. That’s why a basic stance of skepticism, uncertainty, revisability, is a good thing. If we have it, we’re likely and predisposed to go on (and on and on) trying to find out things even if we have thought about … Read the rest
A tangential comment in this piece on why Harvard shouldn’t pretend, as Steven Pinker put it in The Crimson, “‘faith’ and ‘reason’ are parallel and equivalent ways of knowing” is pertinent to a recent discussion here of condoms and the Catholic church:
Indeed, it is not uncommon for religious leaders to advocate acting on faith in the face of reason – as when Catholic priests forbid married women to use condoms even when their husbands are infected with AIDS.
Of course, Catholic priests (and bishops and archbishops and cardinals and the pope and many theologians and Catholic thinkers and writers) forbid everyone to use condoms under any circs, but the point Lawrence Krauss is making by putting it … Read the rest
Also the overall story. Getting pretty much all of it wrong, really.… Read the rest
Two reasons: football triumph of 1992, and low expectations.… Read the rest
From MSF: Somalia, DRC, Haiti, Colombia, Sri Lanka, CAR, Chechnya, India, Malnutrition, TB.… Read the rest
‘One-fourth of all black swan families are headed by gay parents.’ Bang goes ‘unnatural’ claim.… Read the rest
Reason must be unfettered by faith if we are to truly educate our children and our students.… Read the rest
I read a bit of Julian’s Atheism: a Very Short Guide earlier today and there was a bit I wondered about. It gave me pause. He’s comparing belief in God with belief in the existence of the self – one’s own, that is.
For many religious believers, their belief in God’s existence is of comparable strength. They feel the truth of God’s existence so strongly that they can no more doubt it than they can doubt the existence of their own selves.
Is that true? I wondered. I don’t know that it’s not – but I wonder. It seems implausible. It seems implausible because (as we all know via Descartes, of course, if not in any other way) it’s not … Read the rest
‘I still think this here blogosphere is a great venue for public intellectual work.’… Read the rest
Kaufman, Holbo, Osell, Bérubé discuss the old-boy network in blog-world.… Read the rest