Population Pessimism and Diminished Personal Freedom

No Limits 1

Face it, if your Superbowl party includes a sofa that comfortably seats four people, and you have game snacks for four people, but two more people show up ... Everybody has less room. Less popcorn. Less beer. Those two extra people COST something to the others. Further, if you lived on an island with sharply limited resources, in a situation where growing population had finally bumped up against those limits, you’d be forced by the situation to demand less for yourself, to work more … [Read more...]

Things I’d Like to Take Home on the Eve of Christmas

Claus

The impulse, I suspect, is in all of us. Put a 5-year-old on a beach with his mother, and he will spend some large part of his time picking up shells, one by one, over and over, running them back to her, proclaiming in awe and delight, “Mommy, look at THIS one!” You find a great new eating place, you go back and TELL everybody. You discover a beautiful little waterfall on a hike, you take pictures and go back and SHOW people. You hear some juicy, or sad, or amazing, bit of news, your … [Read more...]

Clarification of an Argument for Atheism

Bull copy

What follows is an excerpt from my book (Red Neck, Blue Collar, Atheist: Simple Thoughts About Reason, Gods & Faith), specifically a section from Chapter 20: Uneven Ground, about a double standard in arguments about atheism. The double standard is that one side gets exacting scrutiny, while the other side too often gets a pass. I made reference to the argument — "As I explained in my book ..." —  in my most recent post, Beta Culture: Proposing A New Definition of Atheism, but so … [Read more...]

Facebook Memes #2

Warbucks copy

I tinker up these things occasionally, just for fun. … [Read more...]

If All Your Friends Jumped Off a Bridge … (repost)

bridge_jumper

A phrase popped into my head yesterday while I was thinking about something completely different, and I’d like to toss it at you: “challenge food.” A challenge food is that stuff you’re expected to eat, not because it’s good, not because it’s something you would normally like, but to prove to your friends that you’re tough. Or daring. Or ... willing to go along with the joke. How many times have you heard people rave about chili hot enough to bring tears to your eyes? Or read … [Read more...]

Deserts In The Blind Spot

Layers

Driving through Nevada on vacation a week or so back, I had this epiphany about deserts: In the presence of green and wet, we become blind to deserts, in the same way sociopaths are blind to the existence and reality of other people. On the desert highways of Nevada, you'll occasionally see an oasis off in the distance, a green, lush place — maybe a hay farm, or a little spring-fed resort — and you'll think "Wow, that's beautiful." Your eye is drawn to green, and in that drawing, it … [Read more...]


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