All entries by this author

Sidney Morgenbesser 1921-2004 *

Aug 3rd, 2004 | Filed by

‘Why is there something not nothing?’ ‘Even if there were nothing, you’d still be complaining.’… Read the rest

Gribbin Reviews Penrose *

Aug 3rd, 2004 | Filed by

No specialist knowledge needed – any more than to do a PhD on string theory.… Read the rest

Save the Wild Rice!

Aug 3rd, 2004 3:32 am | By

It’s not only the Vatican, of course. Perhaps I was too hard on the Vatican? No. I wasn’t. (I mean, apart from anything else – was their Jesus a huge fan of marriage and having children and family values? No. Was ‘Saint’ Paul? No. So what are they basing all that on? I mean, they’re not even consistent!) But that doesn’t mean I can’t be hard on other god-botherers and spirit-annoyers, does it. No.

PZ Myers has an excellent rant at Pharyngula about the latter group.

The editorial page of yesterday’s Star-Tribune was full of articles on a ‘controversy’, the sequencing of the wild rice genome. I read them all through twice, and I still don’t see what the problem

Read the rest

‘Science isn’t the only way to truth’ *

Aug 2nd, 2004 | Filed by

Right, because there are Other Ways of Knowing, all of them wrong.… Read the rest

Leave the Sacred Grain of Wild Rice Alone *

Aug 2nd, 2004 | Filed by

Is wild rice a crop or a sacred gift from the Creator?… Read the rest

Masks and Disguises *

Aug 2nd, 2004 | Filed by

Milosevic was framed and Darfur is about oil. Right?… Read the rest

Wishful Thinking *

Aug 2nd, 2004 | Filed by

Hoaxes are swallowed by people who want them to be true.… Read the rest

UK Universities Give Degrees to Failing Students *

Aug 2nd, 2004 | Filed by

‘Science graduates who cannot do what their certificate implies are potentially dangerous.’ … Read the rest

Is Prince Charles Bad For People’s Health? *

Aug 2nd, 2004 | Filed by

New study finds people may be sentencing themselves to death by choosing alternative therapies.… Read the rest

Darling Cardinal

Aug 1st, 2004 10:50 pm | By

Just a little more on the dear Vatican. Because they are such fun there, I can’t tear myself away from the subject. They say the most amusing things!

Among the fundamental values linked to women’s actual lives is what has been called a “capacity for the other”. Although a certain type of feminist rhetoric makes demands “for ourselves”, women preserve the deep intuition of the goodness in their lives of those actions which elicit life, and contribute to the growth and protection of the other. This intuition is linked to women’s physical capacity to give life. Whether lived out or remaining potential, this capacity is a reality that structures the female personality in a profound way. It allows her to

Read the rest

The Vatican Letter Itself *

Aug 1st, 2004 | Filed by

Persuasive stuff.… Read the rest

Difference Feminism, Vatican-style *

Aug 1st, 2004 | Filed by

Feminine capacity to ‘live for the other’ makes women pre-eminent source of social good. Ick.… Read the rest

Vatican Wisdom on Women *

Aug 1st, 2004 | Filed by

Feminism has inspired ideologies that question family and marriage. Bad to question things.… Read the rest

The New Scientist on Francis Crick *

Aug 1st, 2004 | Filed by

Steve Jones: ‘Francis Crick was the Charles Darwin of the 20th century.’… Read the rest

Atheists and Breeders

Aug 1st, 2004 1:41 am | By

Behold, it’s August. Well not really, not where I am. I’m kind of lying when I say that. It is August where B&W is (if B&W is where its database is), but it’s not August where I, typing these words onto this little computer screen, am. So if I (as opposed to someone else) say it’s August, I’m telling a falsehood, because where my body is, it’s 4:30-ish in the afternoon on July 31. But I’m also not telling a falsehood, because it is August in other places – but it’s not August for me, the one uttering the sentence. So is it a lie, or not?

Oh stop playing silly buggers. Anyway the point is it’s August or … Read the rest


Aug 1st, 2004 12:43 am | By

Thought for the Day – or perhaps I mean Provocative Cryptic Assertion via Adapted Quotation for the Day. Identity is the last refuge of the scoundrel.

I had this thought partly because of the ever-present dreary discussion of the Religion Question in US Politics (yawn). I’ve noticed that one ploy people resort to when anyone suggests that religion does not belong in the public sphere, is to conflate their religion with their ‘identity.’ It then occurred to me that that conflation, and confusion (because it is a confusion – religion is not ‘identity’), is what is going on – is the subtext, as it were – of the other side in the argument about Islamophobia we had a few days … Read the rest

Pope Not Dead Yet *

Jul 31st, 2004 | Filed by

Even though he has the beliefs of a dinosaur…… Read the rest

Matt Ridley on Francis Crick *

Jul 30th, 2004 | Filed by

‘Throughout his life he was high on the drug called rationality.’ … Read the rest

Francis Crick, the Telegraph *

Jul 30th, 2004 | Filed by

Accepted a fellowship conditional on chapel-absence; resigned when chapel was built. Good man.… Read the rest

Francis Crick *

Jul 30th, 2004 | Filed by

The Guardian obit, with useful links.… Read the rest