Sunday, March 23, 2008

The Audacity of Reason

From Sam Harris via The Huffington Post:
Barack Obama delivered a truly brilliant and inspiring speech this week. There were a few things, however, that he did not and could not (and, indeed, should not) say.

(read on)

Disturbing ad Placement

Do you find this ad and its placement in Science News as disturbing as I do?

click on the image for a larger view.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Dr. Wafa Sultan

"The al-Jazeera network deeply apologizes for the fact that one of its programs' participants degraded Islam and the monotheistic faiths on her own initiative. The channel extends its apology to all its viewers for the offensive remarks and has canceled both reruns of the program"

And with this unfortunate apology, Al Jazeera demonstrates for all to see, the corrupt and repressive environment in which it has to operate. Whether means to make an earnest effort toward unbiased journalism or whether the mission of the news station is purely propaganda may be academic - they evidently have no choice but to pander to Muslim extremist pressure.

Transcript of the full debate courtesy of Aqoul.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Better (very) Late than Never

From TimesOnline:
Vatican recants with a statue of Galileo

Four hundred years after it put Galileo on trial for heresy the Vatican is to complete its rehabilitation of the great scientist by erecting a statue of him inside the Vatican walls.

The planned statue is to stand in the Vatican gardens near the apartment in which Galileo was incarcerated while awaiting trial in 1633 for advocating heliocentrism, the Copernican doctrine that the Earth revolves around the Sun.

... and I suppose this is expected to make it all better now? Token repentance four centuries after the crime? Now that's setting a great example, isn't it?

The church still routinely takes irrational stands in the face of reality, often with devastating human and environmental consequences. Unless it is somehow able to relinquish its self-claimed monopoly on "truth", step into the present day, and begin to remodel itself in light of the world as it actually is, not as people
millenia ago imagined it to be, the church will continue its slow, pathetic descent into irrelevancy.