From an e-mail to PZ Myers, I learn that:
“the DNA was/is manipulated by ET’s to gain power over the planet.”
“an important Stargate (templar complex) is going to open now.”
“whatever group controls the planetary templar complex when this star gate (some call it Amenti gates) will open in 2012 , will have dominion over the planet and also will have access to the core universal star gates in Mintaka, Orion. The last time Amenti opened , pole shift occurred due to intruder manipulation, and would have again, if guardians, who protect the human race, had not been intervened.
So, as you can imagine, there are many things going on, which you might not even dream of. But this is not important.”
Interestingly enough, even though this stuff is ‘not important’, Tom will in his next mail “talk about the parallel earth, and why they have already been manipulated by ‘Dark Forces’ and already living under the ‘One World Order’”. I feel like I ought to send him an email so that he can keep me in the loop about all these important developments taking place.
So I see other people are writing a bunch of stuff about Andrew Wakefield, the guy who published a study linking autism and MMR-vaccination. Here’s an article in the British Medical Journal about the case. I haven’t read much about the stuff before, maybe I should have.
It turns out Wakefield’s study was a study based on 12 individuals. 12. I did not know that.
Ok, so this is why there’s no way I’m giving him the larger part of the blame for what has happened here. If you make a decision as risky as one exposing your child to multiple dangerous and easily preventable diseases, you’d damn better have a better reason than a study on 12 individuals. If not, you’re a gullible moron.
Wakefield is a fraud, but even if that’s the new thing others add to this story today, it’s not what I’m focusing on. How the hell did a study on 12 individuals ever get to be considered important enough to have any kind of impact on, well, anything? Who were those fools who were giving a study like this any kind of credence? Well, there were a lot of them (wikipedia):
“The claims in the Lancet article were widely reported; vaccination rates in the UK and Ireland dropped sharply, which in turn led to greatly increased incidence of measles and mumps, resulting in a few deaths and some severe and permanent injuries.
Between 1997-1998 and 20001-2002 the MMR vaccine coverage of 2-year-olds in the UK fell from appr. 91 percent to 84 percent. The number of measles cases in the UK was more than 10 times as high in 2007 as it was in 2000 (children who’re not vaccinated don’t necessarily get sick, if they get sick, right away).
I’m reminded of the recent case of a type 1 diabetic child who died because the parents were too moronic to take him to the doctor, relying instead on the power of prayer to heal the kid. It wasn’t the first time that particular story had played out, nor will it be the last. If you’re that stupid, don’t have kids.
1. Why you should take Conservapedia seriously. They actually link to this piece from the front page right now.
2. -ll-, part 2. A quote:
“A mountain is a mass of land that is taller than its surroundings. While there is no technical definition distinguishing between the two, a mountain is generally regarded to be much larger than a hill.
There are different theories about the origin of mountains.
All mountains, at every elevation, have limestone deposits reflecting that they were once under seawater. The Great Flood accounts well for the presence of this limestone and the smooth, eroded surfaces found on most mountains.”
3. -ll-, part 3:
“Bishop James Ussher calculated the universe was created on October 23, 4004 BC. While this is not the only biblical chronology which has been developed, almost all chronologies give a creation date near 4000 BC.
This gives rise to the “starlight problem” for some Christians, although there is nothing inherently illogical about the creation of light in situ to inform humanity of the existence of objects farther away than 6000 light-years. Believers in relativity have constructed a number of models which explain the age of the universe as being affected by the time-warping effects of gravity as predicted by Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity, so that the age of the universe as measured by a hypothetical observer at the edge of the universe might be 14 billion years, but as measured by an observer on Earth is only 6,000 years.”
4. -ll-, part 4. The beginning of the article: “A liberal (also leftist) is someone who rejects logical and biblical standards, often for self-centered reasons. There are no coherent liberal standards; often a liberal is merely someone who craves attention, and who uses many words to say nothing.”
…and here’s an illustration from the article:
The second image in the article is a picture of a serial killer. The article also has a list of ‘Infamous liberals’ further down which includes Stalin and Mao.
5. -ll-, part 5. Funny enough, only half of those signs are useful if you don’t have a girlfriend. Only two don’t mention female partners/relations in any way. Let’s just say those signs aren’t particularly useful if you’re a heterosexual female worried that you’re about to become a ‘lonely atheist nerd’.
It’s easy to laugh at stuff like this, and don’t get me wrong, of course I do that as well. But then again, imagine for just a moment that you were raised by fundamentalist Christian parents and considered Conservapedia to be a far more trustworthy source of information than wikipedia and relied primarily on the information available on this site to make sense of the world. That kind of thought doesn’t exactly make me laugh.
Reminds me a lot of the ‘campaign to get rid of dihydrogen monoxide’ I saw a while ago. Some will laugh, some will cry, I thought it was pretty funny:
Nobody likes to look stupid, perhaps smart people in particular don’t because they’ve invested more in their ‘I’m smart’ (/self-)image, and not knowing what a word means makes you look stupid. Better to sign quickly and that way ‘hide the stupidity’, it always works whenever the petition isn’t a prank petition like this one. I don’t consider the ‘National School of Excellence’ part to be all that significant, I’d been surprised if he’d been unable to coax some of those girls into signing the petition (anyway if that’d been the case, there’d been no video).
In school one of the primary things people learn is that they’re supposed to be able to answer most of the teacher’s questions. If they can’t, it’s usually because they haven’t done their homework. If you ask people about stuff that they think they’re somehow ‘supposed to know about’, expect to get a lot more wrong guesses than if you ask them about stuff they don’t think they’re supposed to know about. Granted, if you ask school kids who are in a school that’s supposed to be for smart people, expect them to think that they ought to know everything. Not knowing the answer either means you haven’t done your homework or that you’re stupid and both those options make you look bad.
He said he saw a “semi-transparent half tube” spaceship on his balcony. He then entered it and met “human-like creatures in yellow spacesuits”, The Moscow Times reported.
“I am often asked which language I used to talk to them. Perhaps it was on a level of the exchange of the ideas,” he told the television program host.
He had told The Guardian the aliens took him to “some kind of star”.
“They put a spacesuit on me, told me many things and showed me around. They wanted to demonstrate that UFOs do exist.”
It’s probably quite telling that Ilyumzhinov is too far out there to even be the main intended target of a takedown like this – he doesn’t just claim that he saw them out of his window, he actually claims that he flew away with them in their spaceship and communicated with them.
On the other hand, when was the last time a US president was elected who didn’t believe in “God”? Ilyumzhinov’s delusions aren’t actually much more crazy than those of ie. George Bush, he just doesn’t share them with a lot of other people, which is why those same people tend to think of him as crazy. Strength in numbers and all that. I think it’s interesting that I live in a culture where even a guy like me tend to automatically judge a person like Ilyumzhinov harder for his moronic delusions than a christian whose views are basically on a similar level of ‘wrongness’. In my view, it’d be nice to live in a culture where religious stupidity was judged as harshly as the stupidity of someone like Ilyumzhinov.
The above ‘is a scanned page from a Christian science textbook published by Bob Jones University.’ Not a book for 2nd graders, this is actually a book that has been written for people above the age of 12. Here’s the link. Here’s wikipedia on the subject.
This stuff is just hilarious:
Yes, it’s also sad, but I choose to laugh. As PZ Myers puts it, no scientist gives much credibility to the ancient Peanut Butter Earth hypothesis (I couldn’t stop laughing after having read that sentence, it really made my day!). If I had intended to create a strawman to beat up in order to make people like these look bad, I couldn’t possibly have come up with something even remotely as moronic as this stuff. Or as the first commenter at Pharyngula notes: I don’t even know how Creationists come up with their bullshit. It’s like they’re trying to look stupid on purpose.
i) Moral depravity
The history of the atheist community and various studies regarding the atheist community point to moral depravity being a causal factor for atheism. In addition, there is the historical matter of deceit being used in a major way to propagate atheism from the time of Charles Darwin onward. The Bible asserts that “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.” (Psalms 14:1 (KJV)). The biblical fool is said to be lacking in sound judgment and the biblical fool is also associated with moral depravity. For example, the biblical book of Proverbs states: “A wise man is cautious and turns away from evil, But a fool is arrogant and careless. A quick-tempered man acts foolishly, And a man of evil devices is hated. The naive inherit foolishness, But the sensible are crowned with knowledge.”(Proverbs 14:16-18 (NASB)). The book of Proverbs also has strong words regarding the depravity of biblical fools: “The desire accomplished is sweet to the soul: but [it is] abomination to fools to depart from evil.” (Proverbs 13:9 (KJV)). Regarding the deceitfulness of fools Proverbs states: “The wisdom of the sensible is to understand his way, But the foolishness of fools is deceit.” (Proverbs 14:8 (KJV)). Noted Bible commentator and clergyman Matthew Henry wrote regarding atheism: “A man that is endued with the powers of reason, by which he is capable of knowing, serving, glorifying, and enjoying his Maker, and yet lives without God in the world, is certainly the most despicable and the most miserable animal under the sun.”
Atheism stems from a deliberate choice to ignore the reality of God’s existence
Noted ex-atheist and psychologist Dr. Paul Vitz has stated that he had superficial reasons for becoming an atheist such as the desire to be accepted by his Stanford professors who were united in disbelief regarding God
Some argue that atheism partly stems from a failure to fairly and judiciously consider the facts
v) State churches
Rates of atheism are much higher in countries with a state sanctioned religion (such as many European countries), and lower in states without a sanctioned religion (such as the United States). Some argue this is because state churches become bloated, corrupt, and/or out of touch with the religious intuitions of the population, while churches independent of the state are leaner and more adaptable. It is important to distinguish “state-sanctioned churches,” where participation is voluntary, from “state-mandated churches” (such as Saudi Arabia) with much lower atheism rates because publicly admitted atheism is punishable by death
vi) Poor relationship with father
Some argue that a troubled/non-existent relationship with a father may influence one towards holding the position of atheism. Dr. Paul Vitz wrote a book entitled Faith of the Fatherless in which he points out that after studying the lives of more than a dozen leading atheists he found that a large majority of them had a father who was present but weak, present but abusive, or absent. Dr. Vitz also examined the lives of prominent theists who were contemporaneous to their atheist counterparts and from the same culture and in every instance these prominent theists had a good relationship with his father. Dr. Vitz has also stated other common factors he observed in the leading atheists he profiled: they were all intelligent and arrogant.
vii) Division in religion
According to Francis Bacon, atheism is caused by “divisions in religion, if they be many; for any one main division addeth zeal to both sides, but many divisions introduce atheism”
viii) Learned times, peace, and prosperity
Francis Bacon argued that atheism was partly caused by “Learned times, specially with peace and prosperity; for troubles and adversities do more bow men’s minds to religion.” Jewish columnist Dennis Prager has stated that a causal factor of atheism is the “secular indoctrination of a generation.” Prager stated that “From elementary school through graduate school, only one way of looking at the world – the secular – is presented. The typical individual in the Western world receives as secular an indoctrination as the typical European received a religious one in the Middle Ages.” Atheists and secularists rarely point out that universities such as Harvard, Princeton, Oxford, Cambridge, and many others were founded by Christians
ix) Negative experiences with theists
Science has in many ways become a new God.
They left out one or two, but overall they do sound quite “reasonable”, don’t they? Ok, maybe not viii (somebody might think the causality was reversed – that religion caused hardship instead of the other way around – can’t have that now, can we…) and ix (how could anyone have a negative experience with a son or daughter of God?), but the rest of them sound really smart and deep.
Here’s the link.
Or: “Why teaching the median voter some basic economic principles may be much harder than you think”. I actually found it a bit painful to watch in the end, but you shouldn’t miss it, in case you haven’t seen it before (I seem to remember having heard a similar recording a while ago, however I seriously doubt it’s the first time this problem has arisen):
- 180 grader
- alfred brendel
- Arthur Conan Doyle
- Bent Jensen
- Bill Bryson
- Bill Watterson
- Claude Berri
- current affairs
- Dan Simmons
- David Copperfield
- david lynch
- den kolde krig
- Dinu Lipatti
- Douglas Adams
- economic history
- Edward Grieg
- Eliezer Yudkowsky
- Ezra Levant
- Filippo Pacini
- financial regulation
- Flemming Rose
- foreign aid
- Franz Kafka
- freedom of speech
- Friedrich von Flotow
- Fyodor Dostoevsky
- Game theory
- Garry Kasparov
- George Carlin
- george enescu
- global warming
- Grahame Clark
- harry potter
- health care
- isaac asimov
- Jane Austen
- John Stuart Mill
- Jon Stewart
- Joseph Heller
- karl popper
- Khan Academy
- knowledge sharing
- Leland Yeager
- Marcel Pagnol
- Maria João Pires
- Mark Twain
- Martin Amis
- Martin Paldam
- mikhail gorbatjov
- Mikkel Plum
- Morten Uhrskov Jensen
- Muzio Clementi
- Nikolai Medtner
- North Korea
- nuclear proliferation
- nuclear weapons
- Ole Vagn Christensen
- Oscar Wilde
- Pascal's Wager
- Paul Graham
- people are strange
- public choice
- rambling nonsense
- random stuff
- Richard Dawkins
- Rowan Atkinson
- Saudi Arabia
- science fiction
- Sun Tzu
- Terry Pratchett
- The Art of War
- Thomas Hobbes
- Thomas More
- walter gieseking
- William Easterly