This is the first year that Ariela and I are spending the Winter Holiday season away from our families. We decided to spend Christmas, Kitzmas, Squidmas, Festivus, and the Solstice in Madison to relax, keep warm, and save some money. Since We’ve been in Wisconsin, we’ve traveled five times to California, mostly for wedding-related business. Now that we have a house, finances are suddenly a big thing! Continue reading Christmas in Wisconsin
Holy Gilded Irony, Batman!
Maybe you found some humor in my previous Monday Madness post about the Pope criticizing the “pagan” sin of opulence, well, now he’s at it again, declaring that the current economic problems in the U.S. and elsewhere are proof positive that the pursuit of wealth is pointless.
The global financial crisis is proof that the pursuit of money and success is pointless, Pope Benedict XVI has told a meeting of bishops in Rome.
The head of the Roman Catholic Church said that the disappearance of money as banks collapsed showed that wealth meant “nothing”.
The Pope said that people should instead base their lives on God’s word.
Those who think that “concrete things we can touch are the surest reality” are deceiving themselves, he said.
Yes, someone is deceiving themselves. Methinks it is the dude in the gold-plated hat. Continue reading Monday Madness – Liquid Gold Edition
I don’t often have the time to continue my Monday Madness posts as of late. but today I heard something so jaw-droppingly Maddening I just had to put it online. (via Pharyngula) The head of one of the largest organizations of people in the world, one of the biggest (if not the biggest) non-governmental land-owning organizations on the planet, that governs its organization from within heavily gilded halls, has just spoken out about the evils of Opulence. It’s time for some Monday Madness.
Like send death threats to public personas, or anyone for that matter. It turns out that one of the death threats sent to PZ Myers has resulted in a swift firing of the 1-800-flowers.com employee who owns the account, Melanie Kroll. Apparently it was her husband who sent the threatening email from her computer. You could hem and haw about whether or not she is liable for the email since her husband sent it, probably without her knowledge. (Hey honey, can I threaten the life of someone with your business account?? OK Thanks!) But the short answer is that she’s out of a job, and he confessed to the crime.
Upon reflection, and reading many of the comments made, I feel that no matter how mad I was, it did not make it right for me to use the language or tone I used. In fact, I think there would have been many more constructive things I could have done, the angry email was just the simplest way.
And I’m sorry.
But then his confession turns bizarre and he starts talking about Muslims… who ever mentioned Muslims in this issue? Continue reading Things not to do with your spouse’s email account
Due to a recent scuffle over sacred sugar free cookies, science blogger PZ Myers has received a ton of hate mail and calls for his job. Of course, no one surrenders the freedom of speech when they become an employee of the government. You just don’t get to claim that the government institution that you work for supports your statements. Nevertheless, there’s been a lot of intolerance coming in the name of tolerance.
In addition to all this, several emails PZ has received contained death threats, and he has just posted two of those emails to his blog, including full IP addresses, headers, email addresses, and everything. Apparently, one of them sent this email through their work email, so now we know that they work for 1800flowers.com! Doesn’t look like they will be working there much longer. Continue reading PZ Myers posts his death threats
John McDonald, the Director of Student Ministries at Westminster Presbyterian Church, has stopped by my blog to drop a few comments. He has been seen previously at the Florida Citizens for Science blog prodding them with taunts and ill-informed criticisms of evolutionary science.
One of the interesting claims that he has been making repeatedly is that David Hume destroyed Empiricism, and that Immanuel Kant saved science from the pickle Hume put it in. This seemed rather odd, considering that Hume was himself an empiricist – he believed that knowledge derived through observation, rather than pure reason (Descartes et al.) was the way to go. Here are John’s comments on this topic on the KCS blog: Continue reading Did Hume destroy Empricism? Did Kant save science?
A little more than a week ago, I received an email from Marni Chidsey, a librarian at Okaloosa-Walton College in Niceville, Florida. She heard about a “Beyond Expelled” event that was about to take place in her locale, and the speaker was going to be Nancy Pearcey. Yes, that Nancy Pearcey. Mrs Totaluberdoubleplus Truth herself.
Marni emailed me, PZ Myers, Ken Miller, and a few others asking for advice on how to represent science and reason at the event, and what would be a good question to ask. Nick Matzke helped me out with my question then, so it was time to pay it forward. I sent her a few good proposed questions for her to ask Pearcey, and explained a little background on her arguments and its basic flaws.
Ken Miller sent the both of us a preview of his now-published essay about Expelled and how utterly dishonest it is. Check it out when you have the time. Ken suggested that Marni hand out copies of it if she could, and I asked her to record it if possible. How did it go? Continue reading Nancy Pearcey at Niceville, a review
Tuesday, the 11th of March, 2008, Professor Richard Dawkins came to Madison, Wisconsin. As I mentioned before, he was here for two talks, and I was going to try to get him on my show for an interview. It was a busy day for me in class, and in lab as well, plus my backpack was broken and I had to use two shoulder bags all day, but I carried around my books, notes, computer, and recording equipment for what was a jam-packed day.
First, there was the talk in the afternoon, of which I caught the latter half. It was a casual affair, a discussion between Dawkins and mostly students. If you want a more complete description of this event, visit Missives from the Frontal Lobe or The Uncredible Hallq. My reason for being there was to approach Dawkins after the discussion to ask him for an interview.
Richard Dawkins is coming to my humble city of Madison, Wisconsin! Sweet. I last met Dawkins in San Francisco one and a half years ago at the Palace of Fine Arts. It was there that I learned that if you don’t know what question to ask a big speaker, don’t wait to get in line – think of it in line! Doesn’t always pan out… but at least you get the chance.
Many people in Madison already know about the Tuesday night talk, but Dawkins is doing a little more than that while he’s here. Here are the events I’ve found relating to his visit: Continue reading Dawkins in Madison