Invoking God, Prominent GOP’ers Write Letters for Dennis Hastert, Sexual Abuser of Four Boys

More than 40 people of prominence have written letters to a judge, requesting mercy for Dennis Hastert, the former Speaker of the House who is awaiting sentencing in a bank fraud and perjury case.

Formally, Hastert is merely facing the music for illegally-structured cash withdrawals, and for lying to federal authorities about what the cash was for. But it’s Hastert’s sexual abuse of at least four boys under his care that has most people a lot more upset. The cash was hush money that Hastert paid to someone who knew his secret. The statute of limitations has run out on the child abuse, so Hastert faces at most six month in jail — for skirting banking regulations, and for his fibs to the FBI.

But even that measly sentence is inhumane, believes Tom DeLay, the former U.S. House Majority Leader, and no stranger to financial shenanigans himself.

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Why Actor Stellan Skarsgård Would Rather Follow a Children’s Cartoon Animal Than God

You may have seen Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgård at work in flicks like Good Will Hunting, Dancer in the Dark, and David Fincher‘s version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. He’s always interesting to watch, and that’s no different in this TV appearance.

Not all interviewers are created equal, and Fredrik Skavlan, who got Skarsgård to join him in the studio, is probably more vapid than most. In a conversation about religion, he erroneously asks why Skarsgård, an atheist and humanist, has “attacked God,” and then wants to know if the actor has honestly never thought that there must be a Creator “out there.”

Through it all, you can see Skarsgård struggling, and succeeding, to stay polite in the midst of his host’s perplexity. All the same, he doesn’t beat around the bush.

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National Geographic Takes a Look at the Spread of the “Religion” Called Atheism

Can we trust National Geographic to take a truthful, fact-based look at atheism? I was, honestly, a little skeptical.

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The publication has a 2,000-word piece about atheism under the somewhat taunting headline “The World’s Newest Major Religion: No Religion.”

So we’re not off to a good start.

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Here’s the Truest Prophecy You’ll Read Today

Cartoonist David Sipress relays a remarkably perceptive (and depressingly accurate) prophecy/curse:

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Yale Psychologist Paul Bloom Argues In a New Book That Feeling Empathy “Makes the World Worse”

What could possibly be bad about feeling empathy? In this three-minute video, Yale professor of psychology and cognitive science Paul Bloom explains why empathy is “fundamentally, from a moral standpoint, a bad thing.”

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