Sunday, January 31, 2010

Justice Served for George Tiller's Murderer

          I'm happy to say that Scott Roeder, the man who shot and killed Dr. George Tiller was convicted for murder. Apparently the DA is seeking to give him life, with a "hard 50", which means he'll have to serve a minimum of 50 years before he is eligible for parole. The man is 51 now, so that is a life sentence, period, and I couldn't agree more. As Martin said on The Atheist Experience Blog, "Never fear, Scott. Once they're done with you in there, at least you won't need an abortion."

Saturday, January 30, 2010

I kinda like this song.....

          I just came across this song, "The God Delusion", by Markella. I like what she's saying....

          Click on the "read more" link below this line to see the lyrics....

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

School Bans....Dictionary?!?!?!?!? Seriously?!?!?!?!?

          It's bad enough that I sometimes hear about crazy right wingers trying to get some school some school libraries to ban some works of literature that they don't agree with. That makes me angry enough that they are literally cutting children off from learning in an academic environment, which is the last place where censorship should take place in literature. However, I am still suprised to hear a school banning the Webster's Collegiate Dictionary from their shelves! I mean, seriously? A dictionary?
          But yes, Oak Meadows  Elementary School in California has removed the dictionaries from their shelves after a parent has complained about one term in the dictionary! I mean, this kind of thing coming from an academic institution really makes me shake my head in embarrassment to have these kinds of educational institutions in my country. Seriously, if they banned every book that had one word that some crazy parent didn't like, they wouldn't have many books at all......yes, it burns :-(

Slip and Slide, LOL

Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

"Mr. Deity and the Promised Land" - New Mr. Deity Episode out...

          I love the Mr. Deity show. I hope that one of these days he gets a deal for a full TV series. The show is hilarious. Well, here is the newest episode, "Mr. Deity and the Promised Land", enjoy:

          Oh, and if you've never watched the show before, it's halfway through it's third season now, and you should go to the Mr. Deity website and watch the back episodes. Here are a couple of my favorites on youtube: Mr. Deity and the Skeptic (with Michael Shermer), Mr. Deity and the Evil, Mr. Deity and the Identity Crisis, & Mr. Deity and the Science Advisor (with PZ Meyers!) just to name a few. There are many more to check out on the website too. Enjoy :-)

Monday, January 25, 2010

New Podcast, D.J. Grothe Interviews James Randi in First Episode

          D.J. Grothe, who is now the President of the JREF, has now recorded the first episode of his new podcast called "For Good Reason", where he interviews James Randi. According to the shows webpage:
"James Randi discusses his health and cancer treatment pseudoscience. He talks about JREF’s future, including expansion of the Million Dollar Challenge, a renewed focus on the skeptic grassroots, and international expansion of The Amaz!ng Meetings. He also reacts to the arrest of bomb dowsing huckster James McCormick on fraud charges, stressing the real-world implications of the skeptical outlook.…"
          I haven't listened to the show yet, as I just saw the announcement on twitter. However, I loved D.J. Grothe's "Point of Inquiry" podcast, and (although I was sad to see he won't be hosting it anymore since he left the Center For Inquiry to take his new position as President of the JREF) I'm sure I will enjoy his new show, which I will be listening to tonight :-) Furthermore, I can honestly say that I've never heard an interview with James Randi that I didn't enjoy. He's definitely one of my heros.

          So, that being said, you should all go to their webpage and listen to the show, or if you use iTunes, like I do, search for "For Good Reason" on iTunes and subscribe/download the show there. I'm certainly looking forward to listening to it this evening.

Guide to Creationist Arguments

          Ha ha ha, this diagram sums up almost every creationist argument I hear, lol.....

Sunday, January 24, 2010

9 Lessons and Carols for Godless People Finally Available!

          If you are a skeptic like myself then you probably remember hearing about "9 Lesons and Carols for Godless People", which took place in the UK this last December. Well, someone just posted it on YouTube in the last few days. Also, thanks to The Skeptic magazine for tweeting about it with the godless link for everyone. Anyways, I have been waiting for a month for someone to post it online so that I could check it out. Furthermore, as expected, it made my night...I thoroughly enjoyed it.The full lineup consisted of: Robin Ince, Richard Dawkins, Brian Cox, Mark Steel, Richard Herring, Shappi Khorsandi, Ben Goldacre, Simon Singh, Barry Cryer and Ronnie Golden, Robyn Hitchcock, Jim Bob and Baba Brinkman.

          Robin Ince was funny and awesome throughout being funny and skeptical and intellectual all at once, Brian Cox was inspiring while discussing the immensity of the known universe, Mark Steel was funny, Robyn Hitchcock sung an inspirational piece about skepticism, faith, and silly beliefs, Simon Singh (who I was definitely glad to hear) was great talking about the silliness of bible code, Shappi Khorsandi was delightful, Baba Brinkman performed a great piece of scientific hip-hop, Richard Dawkins was inspiring as always, Jim Bob sung an incredibly moving piece of skeptical music (which I enjoyed immensely), Ben Goldacre gave a wonderful fast paced presentation of skepticism, Richard Herring told entertaining stories of youthful imaginativeness, and finally , Barry Crier and Ronnie Golden sung a closing song of PEACE AND QUIET, LOL :-) And without further delay, here is 9 Lessons and Carols for Godless People 2009...I hope you enjoy this godless entertainment as much as I did......

Part 1 of 8

Part 2 of 8

Part 3 of 8

Part 4 of 8

Part 5 of 8

Part 6 of 8

Part 7 of 8

Part 8 of 8

I hope you enjoyed these godless bits of science, skepticism, and all around good entertainment, and I can't wait till next years production :-)

Atheists Helping the Homeless Just Had Their Biggest Giveaway Yet!

          As I have said before, not only do I value humanist ideals and strongly believe in doing community service and helping others, but I think that it is important for atheists to openly do community service while proudly saying that we are atheists because it counteracts the idea that atheists are immoral and don't care about others. I know it sounds silly, but I am always taken back by the number of people who seem to think that atheists don't care about others, which is not the case. In fact, most atheists I know care quite a bit about helping others.
          Well, that being said, I was glad to hear that the Atheists Helping The Homeless group here in nearby Austin, Texas just had it's biggest giveaway to date. I'm happy to see that they are doing well and growing and I am also pleased to see more groups like them springing up all over the country. I would urge you to look around and help your local group, as well as checking out Atheists Helping The Homeless and maybe send a few dollars their way if you can afford it. The biggest thing groups like this need are donations, no matter how small, every little bit helps. However, if you really can't afford to help financially then simply help by spreading the word to others about AHH and groups like them.
          Anyways, here is a video of their latest giveaway, showing a bit of what they are doing...I also encourage you to check out their website (linked above) and help out if you agree with what they are doing.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Jim McCormick, the Guy who Sold the Dousing Rod "Bomb Detection Devise" was finally arrested and James Randi has a Few Words to Say About it.

          This is a story that pissed me off quite a bit when I first heard about it. Basically what happened is the Iraq Military had been buying and outfitting their soldiers (who were manning checkpoints and searching for bombs passing through the checkpoints) with bomb detectors that were essentially dousing rods! Phil Plait, the then president of the JREF, wrote an article about it back in November of last year. Now,the main reason that this upset me so much is the fact that arming the soldiers with bomb detectors that don't detect anything will probably lead to the deaths of many innocent people.
          Well, long story short, James McCormic is the guy running the company who sold $85,000,000 worth of these useless devices to the Iraqi Military, and probably others. Now it is being reported by the BBC and others that McCormick has been arrested and charged with fraud. Furthermore, I hope that they throw the book at him, because his useless devices have probably already let many bombs through checkpoints that have killed and injured innocent people, many of which would have probably been stopped with real bomb detectors, bomb sniffing dogs, etc. Well, I just read about McCormick's arrest on the JREF website (linked to above) and James Randi (who is awesome by the way) had a few of his own words to say on the matter...and I couldn't agree more.......

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Something Interesting to Look Forward to at the End of this Year

          The First Annual Freethought Film Festival will be held in Florida in November this year! I'm excited to hear this. I love independent films and film festivals, and it would be awesome to see a film festival focusing on films with freethinking, atheist, skeptical, and secular humanist values. I'm really looking forward to seeing how this turns out. Here is a quote from their webpage:

     "FFFF planning for the First Annual International Freethought Film Festival event in Tampa, Florida. (target date November 2010) is well underway! The mission of the FFFF is to promote reason, critical thinking and freedom of inquiry through the medium of film. With support from freethinkers who have viewpoints that are agnostic, atheist, humanist, secular humanist, rationalist, skeptic, of "Bright" mind, non-religious or otherwise non-traditional; we can produce a focused means through which freethought ideas can be presented to the community. Such focus and collaboration on a single project for freethinkers is what will make this a success."
          So, keep this in mind any of you who may be in Florida that time of year, and if you know anyone who is involved in making films of this type then certainly give them a heads up for a submission. And, for those of us who probably can't afford to be in Florida this November, I hope that they have ways for us to acquire the films to watch ourselves. Also, they have a facebook page, so click here to visit their page, become a fan, and keep up with what's going on with this.

Sometimes it Hurts to Be Reminded How Stupid Many of Our Leaders Are....

          Every so often (actually quite often, to be honest, lol) I see something involving individuals that participate in the leading of our nation that is an unfortunate reminder of how stupid and insane many of our elected leaders really are. I saw this video the other day, I think it happened on December 17th, and it was just another of it's kind that made me say "what the @%$# ?" Here, have a look for yourself...

          I mean, come on! I know that there are incredibly stupid, ignorant, and deluded people out there, but to be reminded that people like this who are in control of the laws, rules, and policies that govern my life. But then again, it's why there are so many laws, rules, and policies that I disagree with. However, it is particularly disturbing when I see them sincerely arm-waving and praying to their god that he ends healthcare reform (apparently it must be a sin to help everyone get access to healthcare). I guess that they must just want poor people to stay sick and desperate so that they will keep praying to their imaginary friend and putting what little money they may have into these bastards hands in exchange for a bit more false hope. Furthermore, what saddens me more than seeing our nations leaders doing something so ignorant and counterproductive, is the fact that they have enough deluded supporters in our population to keep them in office. It's not surprising, just sad to be reminded of.
          One final note....things like this should definitely serve as reminders of how important it is that skeptical, empirically rational, reason based thinking individuals do what they can do to participate in politics and getting our voices heard, as well as supporting members of the skeptical and atheist community in getting elected to public office. We cave constant reminders of how hard it is to change things, but it takes time. We are however, among the fastest growing groups in America, and our influence is growing. So, my fellow skeptics, atheists, and all members of the reason based community, keep it up. I know we've got a long ways to go, however we have already come very far and there are no limits to where the future can take us.