Scattered thoughts on Elliot Roger, evolution, and gender

I have a theory on Elliot Roger that I haven’t seen anyone else mention yet. The theory comes from chapter 6 of Steven Pinker’s excellent book How The Mind Works. The chapter is entitled “Hotheads,” and begins as follows: On March 13, 1996, Thomas Hamilton walked into an elementary school in Dunblane, Scotland, carrying two [Read More...]

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...]


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