Faithful Hindus Give Their Gods Billions of Dollars in Gold, Resist Government Bid To Put It In Interest Accounts

Gods need gold:

India is the world’s biggest consumer of gold and its ancient temples have collected billions of dollars in jewellery, bars and coins over the centuries — all hidden securely in vaults, some ancient and some modern. … Now, the Narendra Modi government reportedly wants to get his hands on this temple gold, estimated at about 3,000 tonnes, more than two-thirds of the gold held in the U.S bullion depository at Fort Knox, Kentucky, to help tackle India’s chronic trade imbalance.

The Modi government is planning to launch a scheme in May that would encourage temples to deposit their gold with banks in return for interest payments, it is said. The government is likely to melt the gold and loan it to jewellers to meet an insatiable appetite for gold and reduce economically-crippling gold imports, which accounted for 28 per cent of India’s trade deficit in the year ending March 2013.

Even if the plan succeeds, it’s still not nearly as good as converting the gold into cash directly to help the poor. Why would gods be interested in precious metals in the first place? It boggles the mind that more and more gold accrues to Hindu temples and none of it is used for anything but adornments, at best. A lot of the yellow metal just sits uselessly in vaults, hidden away for hundreds, possibly thousands of years.



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Greenville (SC) County Council Members, Ignorant of the Law, Won’t Let Atheists Deliver Invocations

When it comes to invocations at government meetings, the Supreme Court said last year that prayers are fine — even sectarian prayers “in Jesus’ name” are fine — as long as the process is open to everybody. If they want invocations, city councils must set policy so that even minority faith groups have a chance of delivering them. And we’ve seen the consequences of this for a while now, with atheists, Pagans, and Wiccans making the most of their opportunities.

But that message seems to have escaped the 12 County Council members in Greenville, South Carolina.

They think they already have diversity:

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Judge Rules That Opening Prayers Can Continue at Hamilton County (Tennessee) Commission Meetings

For years now, the Hamilton County Commissioners (in Tennessee) have been praying at their meetings. These were often sectarian Christian prayers, and in 2012, Tommy Coleman and Brandon Jones — both college students — filed a lawsuit against the county saying they were violating the Establishment Clause.

Since then, as we know, the Supreme Court has made this issue moot. Sectarian prayers are allowed… but they must be open to everybody, not just Christians.

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Surprise! Louisiana’s Creationism Law Has Let Creationism Sneak Into Public Schools… and There’s Proof

Last year, Slate‘s Chris Kirk showed us a map documenting where taxpayer money can legally be used to espouse Creationism, whether through charter schools or public schools:

Oh, Louisiana…

Zack Kopplin says that this is still a major problem in his home state and he can prove it.

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How the FDA Can More Effectively Regulate Homeopathic Products

Earlier today, the Food and Drug Administration held a public hearing on the topic of “Homeopathic Product Regulation” and the Center For Inquiry’s Michael De Dora offered testimony on the issue.

Since banning homeopathic medicine is out of the question, what should the government do? De Dora offered these suggestions:

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