All entries by this author

Death Penalty Confirmed for Leyla Mafi *

Dec 24th, 2004 | Filed by

Iranian judicial officials deny that Mafi has mental age of 8.… Read the rest

Stoning of Hajieh Esmailvand Put on Hold *

Dec 24th, 2004 | Filed by

Iranian authorities have temporarily stayed stoning while case is studied by judiciary pardons commission.… Read the rest

A Little Book of Bollocks *

Dec 24th, 2004 | Filed by

Tessa Jowell compiles a list of jargony governmentese.… Read the rest

The Intersection of Science and Popular Culture *

Dec 24th, 2004 | Filed by

A DNA float wins a prize at Rio’s Carnaval.… Read the rest

We Must not Tolerate Censorship *

Dec 23rd, 2004 | Filed by

Why didn’t play’s producers and police tell ‘community leaders’ to get lost? What’s to negotiate? … Read the rest

Many Names Sign Letter Supporting Playwright *

Dec 23rd, 2004 | Filed by

Letter warns that everyone has lost out due to cancellation of play. … Read the rest

Letter Deplores Closing of ‘Behzti’ *

Dec 23rd, 2004 | Filed by

B&W signed too.… Read the rest

Surprise: Men Prefer Subordinate Women *

Dec 23rd, 2004 | Filed by

And women don’t prefer subordinate men for high-investment activities.… Read the rest

Guilty Overcompensation for Past Museum Sins *

Dec 23rd, 2004 | Filed by

Scholars’ assessments are ignored in favor of self-promotional platitudes. … Read the rest


Dec 22nd, 2004 8:25 pm | By

A self-referential moment. Beg pardon. But there’s some amusement value in it (well I think so at least). Plus of course there’s the flogging aspect, and after all, the less the book sells, the sooner I will have to go out and pluck chickens for a living, after which I will be far too tired and chickeny to mess around with B&W.

So there are some reviews. There’s this one at Mugged by Reality – which is quite funny because he quotes the outraged review at Amazon and then says this:

I actually came across the book by accident. I was perusing Harry’s Place and inadvertently clicked on the Amazon link in his sidebar.
‘Hmmm’, I thought as I scanned

Read the rest

Whither Clarity

Dec 22nd, 2004 7:23 pm | By

Well here’s an oddity (the air is thick with oddities these days) – someone arguing for more clarity, an end to muddling through, an awareness of tensions and conflicts and the need for hard choices – and doing it by means of surprisingly muddled mushy unclear woolly language. That seems like a peculiar way to argue for clear thinking.

The conflict played out in Birmingham, and elsewhere every day, is between two values – one that liberals have cherished for centuries and another acquired much more recently. The ancient, almost defining liberal ideal is freedom: of expression, of movement, of protest. The newer value is an approach to society’s minorities that aims to go beyond mere tolerance, and reaches for

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Death Threats Succeed in Silencing Playwright *

Dec 22nd, 2004 | Filed by

Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti has asked theatre not to stage her play because threats against her have increased.… Read the rest

Never Mind the Truth, Just Win the Argument *

Dec 22nd, 2004 | Filed by

Schopenhauer’s sardonic book gives 38 argument-winning rhetorical tricks.… Read the rest

ACSH Replies to CSPI *

Dec 22nd, 2004 | Filed by

A history of going where the science takes them, even when that science is counter to interest of funders.… Read the rest

Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti in Hiding After Murder Threats *

Dec 22nd, 2004 | Filed by

Councillor calls mob’s success at censorship a victory for common sense.… Read the rest


Dec 21st, 2004 11:42 pm | By

Just two or three more brief quotations from Wicca. My little solstice present for you.

To discourage a poltergeist from remaining in the house put up a list of chores and tell it that if it is to remain in the house it must earn its keep. If it does not, then you will bring in an exorcist.

Errm – okay. But – um – how do I tell it? Write it at the top of the list of chores? But how do I know if the poltergeist has seen the list of chores? Or that it can read? Should I tell it personally, by announcing it aloud? But how do I know where polty is, or if it’s … Read the rest

Paul Edwards 1923-2004 *

Dec 21st, 2004 | Filed by

Atheist philosopher lived 81 years, did not convert to theism.… Read the rest

The Self-Esteem Myth *

Dec 21st, 2004 | Filed by

Just for a start, separate correlation from causation.… Read the rest

Sharia in Canada a Thoroughly Bad Idea *

Dec 21st, 2004 | Filed by

Should be rejected along with any other impulse to tailor Canada’s justice system to individual cultures.… Read the rest

Report Pushes Women’s Rights Back 1400 Years *

Dec 21st, 2004 | Filed by

Boyd’s report encourages spread of Political Islam in Canada, says Homa Arjomand.… Read the rest