Archives for July 2013

Christians: Jesus’ disciples could have been lying. Stop using the resurrection as an argument.

This post is just going to be me repeating some points I’ve made before, but I’m writing it because I don’t think anyone (myself included) has made them loudly enough yet. It has to do with the standard Christian argument that Jesus’ disciples couldn’t have been lying because they were willing to die for their beliefs. [Read more…]

Warren Buffett’s son is almost completely wrong about charity

I first encountered this article by Warren Buffett’s son Peter Buffett in a pair of tweets by Mistress Matisse, complaining about the implication that making condoms available is a bad thing. But it wasn’t until I saw the article linked by Leiter that it registered with me just how bad the article was. I’m going [Read More…]

Why Daenerys, Ned, and Robb are jerks, and George R. R. Martin is awesome

SPOILER ALERT: I’ve read all the Song of Ice and Fire books, but only seen the first season of the Game of Thrones TV series based on them. I know roughly where in the plot of the books the TV show is, and I’ll try not to spoil anything past that point. [Read more…]

How do we go back to having movies that aren’t just copying last year’s movies?

A year ago, when reviewing Joss Whedon’s Avengers, I wrote: “Hollywood is now stuck in the trap of always trying to copy last year’s summer blockbuster (contrast Star Wars, which copied from many different sources spread out over several decades, plus Joseph Campbell.)” More recently, my impressions of Hollywood today were confirmed when I read [Read More…]

Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality puzzle-solving post

If you haven’t read Eliezer Yudkowsky’s Harry Potter fanfic Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality, I strongly recommend it. If you still need to read it, don’t read this post, because I’m going to spoil everything up through the currently-posted chapter (chapter 95), but if you have read it, read on. [Read more…]

Reminder: I’ve got an entire book out under the Creative Commons license

Just want to remind everyone that my second book is available for free here. All chapters carry the following license: This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit or send a letter to Creative Commons, 444 Castro Street, Suite 900, Mountain View, [Read More…]

Alvin Plantinga, Michael Behe, and Paul Draper

In an e-mail conversation, Paul Draper pointed out an error in my review of Plantinga’s most recent book, Where the Conflict Really Lies. The key background is at one point in the book, Plantinga responds to a paper by Draper which was, in turn, a critique of the work of intelligent design advocate Michael Behe. [Read More…]

More on the Zimmerman/Martin case

Two of the best articles I’ve read on the George Zimmerman verdict, which I blogged about Sunday, are by Will Wilkinson and Popehat’s Ken White. Wilkinson’s conclusion: In Texas you can get away with shooting someone to death if they’re running away with your property. That’s insane, and it’s easy to see how a law [Read More…]

Beware outrage at a “not guilty” verdict

When I first heard about the case of George Zimmerman’s shooting of Trayvon Martin, I had the standard outraged liberal reaction, then I had some doubts, then I largely forgot about the whole thing. But I was profoundly disturbed by much of the reaction I saw to Zimmerman’s acquittal on Twitter and Facebook last night, [Read More…]