Why I changed my mind and took the Giving What We Can Pledge

It costs the Against Malaria Foundation $5 to distribute an anti-malarial bednet, and it’s been estimated that they manage to save one life for about every $2,000 they spend on malaria prevention. * The Schistosomiasis Control Initiative provides deworming treatments for pennies on the dollar. Given this, if you want to make the world a [Read More...]

I’m giving a talk on earning to give on June 8th

I’m giving a short talk on earning to give on June 8th, as part of a meetup that will include two other short talks relating to effective altruism. The event is taking place a 2pm at 1561 Cayuga Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94112 (a private residence, but I have permission to post the address online). [Read More...]

PSA: This Easter, please remember to fact-check before sharing or retweeting

ishtar-easter

Hey everyone, see this image? The claims it makes are bullshit. As you could find out with literally a minute on Google or Wikipedia: The modern English term Easter, cognate with modern German Ostern, developed from the Old English word Ēastre or Ēostre.[nb 2] This is generally held to have originally referred to the name [Read More...]

I’ve read Draper’s paper, and I am puzzled

On Monday, Justin Schieber of Reasonable Doubts tweeted his endorsement of Paul Draper’s argument from moral agency for the existence of God: Draper, an agnostic philosopher, has given BY FAR THE STRONGEST argument for theism. Read a great summary here: http://t.co/SsItkfTa95 — Justin Schieber ofRD (@Justinsweh) April 7, 2014 If you think there are no [Read More...]

William Lane Craig rationalizes his lie about Ehrman

In the past, I’ve documented William Lane Craig’s repeated lies about Bart Ehrman—namely his attempts to cite Ehrman as a skeptical scholar who accepts the “facts” Craig uses in his argument for the resurrection of Jesus. For years, Craig has been quoting from a 2003 lecture Ehrman gave as if it represented his current views, [Read More...]

Why I’m cool with what happened to Brendan Eich

So: it came out that Brendan Eich, who had been CTO of the Mozilla Corporation (the folks behind the Firefox web browser) had donated $1,000 to support California’s Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage in the state. This roughly coincided with Eich’s promotion to CEO, and provoked an outcry, with outsiders talking about a boycott [Read More...]

Philosopher’s Carnival March 2014

Welcome to the 161st edition of the Philosopher’s Carnival! Here are this month’s submissions… Enigman has a post on the ancient philosophical problem of vagueness. Brock Rough has a post at Aesthetics For Birds explaining why video games in art museums still aren’t art. Marcus Arvan summarizes an article he wrote proposing a new theory of free will which he [Read More...]

Leah Libresco: social conservatives are becoming irrelevant

Atheist-turned-Catholic blogger Leah Libresco has a new gig working for the American Conservative magazine, and she’s produced some fascinating reporting on the 2014 CPAC convention, including a piece titled “Social Cons in Retreat at CPAC” It might be a tradition that every year that GOProud is excluded as a CPAC sponsor, there will be a [Read More...]

How much you like someone is a poor predictor of their ethical behavior

It’s been observed that subcultures have this problem where conflicts within the subculture tend to devolve into popularity contests, even if they’re officially someone else. Everyone involved may claim they’re taking a principle stand, but somehow the more popular person ends up crushing the less popular person the vast majority of the time. This is [Read More...]


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