A Disquisition on the Nature of Love, or, Contra Ron/Hermione

Ron's face is how I feel about this pairing

See, this is exactly why I love culture-wide book clubs.  I mention Harry Potter in passing, and you all start discussing the proper nature of love, and whether Ron/Hermione or any of the other case studies we're all quite familiar with from the series, fit the mold.I said that one of the reasons I hate the Ron/Hermione pairing is that Ron has, at best, apathy and at worst contempt for Hermione's curiosity and brightness.  I didn't she, or anyone else, should you marry someone wh … [Read more...]

That Moment We Saw You For What You Really Are

choosing a mask

The "Welcome to JT" thread has digressed into a number of interesting discussions (parental authority over children, what to make of data that suggests the people you think are wrong are doing better than you, etc).  And I do want to throw this less wrong post on envying "irrational" choices into the mix, but the comment I want to highlight is on a different subject.  Clarissa wrote: Yeah, JT presents himself as a nice guy, but he can turn on a dime into a vicious attack dog.I don’t trust gu … [Read more...]

No ‘Healthy Outlet’ for Bad Habits

Remember you can vote once per day for the About.com Atheism Awards.  I'm one of five nominees for Best Atheist Blog.  More details here.This is part two of my response to Brian S. about my choice to give up free food during Lent.  The first focused on why I glommed on to Lent in the first place.  Now we're addressing the substance of the change I'm trying to make.  Brian wrote: I disagree [that the feeling of having cheated someone is a bad pleasure to cultivate], or at any rate don’t feel … [Read more...]

On Not Respecting Autonomy

This was more fun to use as an illustration of 'nudge' than Cass Sunstein's bookThis is part of a series of posts which tackles sexual ethics and debating strategies (but not at the same time)There's a (probably) apocryphal George Bernard Shaw story in which he approached an elegant woman at a party and asked, "Madam, would you go to bed with me for one hundred thousand pounds?"  She was stunned, but, after a moment's reflection said she would.  Shaw then asked her, "Madam, would you … [Read more...]

Bubblegum Pop and Pop Religion

The series on immorality is still ongoing, and the next post will go up this evening.  But now for something completely different...Last night, the pop juggernaut/variety show/karaoke hour that is the TV show Glee decided get religion.  If you don't follow the show, the title of the episode "Grilled Cheesus" may give you a hint about the taste level of the show.In brief, one of the students makes a grilled cheese sandwich that appears to be imprinted with the face of Jesus.   He takes up … [Read more...]

“Only animals can’t help what they are”

For an explanation of what Weatherwax Wednesdays are all about, read the introduction post.This week's Weatherwax quote is also from Carpe Jugulum. This exchange occurs between during the denoument as Granny Weatherwax confronts the leader of the vampire family that has invaded the kingdom of Lancre. “We are vampires. We cannot help what we are.”“Only animals can’t help what they are,” said Granny. The rallying cry of the transhumanist movement is "To be human is to be more than human. … [Read more...]


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