Dennett: … which Darwin completely impugns with his theory of natural selection. And he shows, hell no, not only can you get design from un-designed things, you can even get the evolution of designers from that un-design. You end up with authors and poets and artists and engineers and other designers of things, other creators — very recent fruits of the tree of life. And it challenges people’s sense that life has meaning.
Hat-tip to Think Progress, Mr. 700 Club, which could stand for the number of people that he cons into sending him money every day instead of finding some productive work to do, proves that humans that live in Ivory Towers of Delusion are not intelligently designed for anything but demagoguery:It’s Just Pat.
Right-wing evangelist Pat Robertson suggested that Ariel Sharon’s stroke occurred because he was “dividing God’s land.” Robertson: “I would say woe unto any prime minister of Israel who takes a similar course…God said, ‘This land belongs to me, you better leave it alone.’” (Video at Media Matters)
Would America produce a more moral society if all students went toprivate schools, the case of Osama Bin Laden suggests otherwise, YOUNG OSAMA
During the nineteen-sixties and early seventies, Al Thagher was the most prestigious high school in Jedda; compared with other schools in Saudi Arabia, it had a relatively secular flavor. Many wealthy Saudi parents sent their sons abroad for secondary education—to Lebanon, Egypt, England, or the United States—but for those who kept their boys in Jedda “Al Thagher was the school of the élite,”
Its students did not wear the national dress, a thobe and cloth headdress, but, rather, a uniform that imitated the styles of English and American prep schools: white button-down shirts with ties, gray slacks, black shoes and socks, and, in the winter months, charcoal blazers.
Each year’s graduating class numbered about sixty boys. Among them were young princes from the Saudi royal family, as well as privileged commoners like bin Laden. Every morning, the students would assemble in rows for a military-style call to order; on a stool to one side sat a schoolmaster with a cane, ready to discipline boys who misbehaved, by beating them on the soles of their bare feet.
An all boys school that believed in severe corporal punishment. It does sound like an educational wet dream of Bill O’Liely.
Thanks to Seeing the Forest for this link, The longest yarn: A history of pay to play at right wing think tanks
Revelations that Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff bought op-ed pieces from fellows at right wing think tanks should unleash an investigation into two decades of so-called research paid for by conservative philanthropies.
just a coincidence that yesterday I mentioned the myth of “free markets”,
Doug Bandow, a senior fellow at the fiercely libertarian Cato Institute, resigned after BusinessWeek Online revealed that he had been paid ample chunks of change by indicted Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff to produce columns in support of issues of interest to Abramoff and his clients. Many of these columns were related to Indian gambling, and “extol[ing] the virtues of the free-market system“ particularly in the Northern Mariana Islands, the New York Times reported. .
which brought to mind this book by Chris Mooney, The Republican War on Science
Does the Bush administration ignore or deny mainstream research to please its conservative base? Have business groups and certain religious lobbies helped it do so? Does Bush-era treatment of scientists differ from that of Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Reagan? Has a Republican Congress passed laws designed to disable clean air and water efforts, and has it dismantled safeguards, such as the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment, meant to give legislators unbiased advice? Mooney’s passionate, thoroughly researched volume answers these questions with an urgent “yes.”
I would argue that its more then a war on science, but a war on reason and rationalism.
. . . . .
What’s a day without sunshine, whistleblowers, warrantless domestic spying, and little tweeties tweeting. Can Bush and his clucking surrogates really handle the heat of investigating the NYT for exposing the illegal acts of the administration. Bush should listen to the bombastic hypocrites of the Fighting Righties Keyboard Shadow Boxers and “bring it on”. Bushbunny should listen to the people, or his people that is, Nixon was smarter and he couldn’t even present a good dog and pony show, he caught chewed up and spit out like a rotten olive…Could publication of the domestic-spying story lead to indictment of the New York Times?
Legal means are one thing, but political will is another. If Bush goes after the Times, he could spark a conflagration potentially more destructive to a free press — or to his administration — than Nixon’s 1971 Pentagon Papers machinations, which included efforts to stop publication of the classified study of the Vietnam War, the aborted prosecution of leaker Daniel Ellsberg, and the intention to prosecute newspapers (and their employees) that ran the document. All backfired on Nixon.
Many believe that the Times performed an incalculably valuable service when it reported last month on a top-secret National Security Agency program — almost certainly unlawful — involving presidentially (but not court-) approved electronic surveillance of message traffic between people in this country and locations abroad. The leak investigation by the Department of Justice (DOJ) has begun.
I think begging is unseemly, especially in politics, but I beg the Bunnypants and administration to please, please, please go after the NYT. Listen to the miscreants of Rightyville, try and bring the Gray Lady to her knees. -Where the press is free and every man able to read, all is safe. -Thomas Jefferson
I stood up and peeled off my coat and got a handkerchief out and mopped my face and neck and the backs of my wrists. St. Louis in August had nothing on that place. I sat down again and I felt automatically for a cigarette and then stopped. The old man caught the gesture and smiled faintly.
“You may smoke, sir. I like the smell of tobacco.”
I lit the cigarette and blew a lungful at him and he sniffed at it like a terrier at a rathole. The faint smile pulled at the shadowed corners of his mouth.
“A nice state of affairs when a man has to indulge his vices by proxy,” he said dryly. “You are looking at a very dull survival of a rather gaudy life, a cripple paralyzed in both legs and with only half of his lower belly. There’s very little that I can eat and my sleep is so close to waking that it is hardly worth the name. I seem to exist largely on heat, like a newborn spider, and the orchids are an excuse for the heat. Do you like orchids?”
“Not particularly,” I said.
The General half-closed his eyes. “They are nasty things. Their flesh is too much like the flesh of men. And their perfume has the rotten sweetness of a prostitute.” –THE BIG SLEEP written by Raymond Chandler