Shutdown ends. GOP rightly gets nothing for their tantrum.

All day yesterday while I was touring the Champaign-Urbana campus (which is lovely!) I was partly in agony because my smartphone (and everybody else’s smartphones) was telling me that the shutdown was over and the GOP walked away with nothing to show for their stunt except for plummeting approval numbers – and I couldn’t write [Read More...]

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Help Skepticon raise the rest of the money it needs!

From the mouth (well, typing fingers) of conference organizing all-star Lauren Lane: Dear Internet, Each year, we work tirelessly to ensure that Skepticon remains a conference that is absolutely FREE to attend. Keeping Skepticon as accessible as possible has always been of the utmost importance to us, but we can’t do that without the support [Read More...]

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Your morning happiness: cats stealing dogs’ beds.

The talk last night went well.  Good turnout and a fun audience (for the first time someone used the safe word).  Man, those students at ISSA know how to show a feller a good time.  Last night there was Smash Brothers on the N64 and musical theater duets.  All in all it was a wonderful [Read More...]

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I thought my respect for Oprah couldn’t decline any more.

This video clip made me want to start firebombing things.  It’s three and a half minutes of Oprah implying very strongly that atheists cannot feel awe and both of them equivocating on words that allow mysticism to get smuggled into atheism. Oprah says: “You’re an atheist, but you’re into awe?” Yes, because if we don’t [Read More...]

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I’m off to Illinois!

Today I set sail for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where tomorrow night I’ll be speaking about how to effectively argue with religious people.  It should be fun.  The event is open to the public and will take place Wednesday, Oct. 16 in room #161 in Noyes Hall.  Here’s the event page. It’s free, so [Read More...]

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Your morning happiness: babies laughing at dogs.

It’s the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine…because here’s a video of babies laughing at dogs. If you don’t watch the whole vid, just watch this part.  It’s just the freaking best. And here’s this picture which reminds me of low level PvP: [Read more...]

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Dragon cake!

Michaelyn and I decided to spend another despondent day in our lives made meaningless without god making a cake.  Our inspiration was the dragon from the League of Legends champion Lulu and her dragon trainer skin. The inspiration for this cupcake was also from Lulu.  One of her abilities can transform an enemy into a [Read More...]

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Sam Harris with a great article about Malala Yousafzai and religious moderation.

Sam Harris has published an article about the attacks on Malala Yousafzai and similar acts of violence.  It’s a great piece, but one section stood out to me that I wanted to share.  It was when Sam talks about the reaction of religious moderates to the atrocities catalyzed by religious belief: Here is my pick [Read More...]

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HIV positive priest arrested for soliciting prostitution.

Meet James McGonegal, a priest at a Catholic church in Cleveland.  James has been a very bad boy: An incident report from Cleveland Metroparks said McGonegal offered a park ranger, who was wearing civilian clothes, $50 to help him “get off,” and then exposed himself while sitting in his late-model Jeep SUV. After being arrested, [Read More...]

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Martial arts prodigy denied spot on a wrestling team of boys she’d destroy.

Amanda Leve is a 16 year-old martial arts prodigy.  She has made a national name for herself by competing against male wrestlers and martial artists in weight divisions two levels above her own and still dominating.  She’s a pretty inspiring figure. Unfortunately, she attends a Catholic High School, so when she signed up for the [Read More...]

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Maddow on Tea Party racism and the GOP’s story on the shutdown.

Rachel Maddow wrote a piece on yesterday’s Tea Party protest at the White House that really paints the Tea Party as the party of racism and proud ignorance (why hasn’t their deep-seated Christianity cured them of these things?  If I didn’t know better, I’d almost say it contributed…).  Here’s the part that really struck me: [Read More...]

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Torturous 7th Day Adventists will face jail time, but not for torture and barbarism.

Last week I wrote about how four 7th Day Adventists were on trial for the torture of a young woman (they called it an “exorcism”).  One of the people on trial was her former boyfriend, another was her biological mother.  I lamented how a person’s mind could be so mangled by religion that they’d torture [Read More...]

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Your morning happiness: this dog is in a life vest.

Sailing to victory. [Read more...]

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The rule change the GOP made that allowed them to keep the government shut down.

Just. Fucking. Wow. The votes are there to pass a clean CR.  The Republicans who oppose the clean CR (Tea Party) know it, and so they altered the rules to prevent anybody but House majority leader Eric Cantor or his designee from bringing up the vote. Yeah, it’s Obama’s shut down.  And up is down [Read More...]

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