November 14, 2018

By James A. Haught If you study history, you’ll see episodes that changed civilization. For example, in Ancient Greece, for the first time, bright thinkers sought natural explanations for the world around them, instead of believing that phenomena were caused by gods and spirits. This started the science-versus-religion clash that still roils 25 centuries later. Here’s another landmark: Around three centuries ago, major thinkers began advocating democracy, human rights and personal freedoms. Their period became known as the Enlightenment. It… Read more

November 12, 2018

If you look closely, you can catch glimpses of a coming new world buried beneath the old one. Read more

November 9, 2018

The benefits of downsizing. Read more

November 7, 2018

In the weeks leading up to the 2018 midterms, I was deliberately avoiding the polls. If they looked promising, I might have started feeling optimistic, and then I would have run the risk of having my hopes dashed again. If they looked ominous, I would’ve felt angry and depressed before it was strictly necessary. As it is, this is a middle-of-the-road outcome, neither the best nor the worst case. One thing to take comfort in is that we avoided the… Read more

November 5, 2018

A moment of silence for the passing of a telescope that changed our view of the universe and humanity’s place in it. Read more

November 2, 2018

The dark side of homeownership. Read more

October 31, 2018

By James A. Haught A jobless West Virginian, living on welfare, began preaching in Pentecostal tabernacles to support his family. Within a few years, T.D. Jakes had raked in so much money from believers that he was able to pay $870,000 for two side-by-side mansions, one with a pool and bowling alley. Then his soaring cash flow enabled him to pay $3.2 million for a Texas megachurch vacated by a crooked evangelist who went to prison. Before long, Jakes was… Read more

October 29, 2018

By now we’ve all heard of the latest horrible outbreak of slaughter: a shooting at a synagogue outside Pittsburgh where eleven people were killed by an armed white supremacist screaming, “All Jews must die!” (Israel’s chief rabbi condemned the assault but refused to say that it happened at a synagogue, because in the eyes of Israel’s fundamentalist rabbinate, any denomination other than Orthodox isn’t truly Jewish.) Within the same span of a few days, there was also the “MAGA bomber”,… Read more

October 26, 2018

Cooperation is for suckers and inferior mortals. Read more

October 24, 2018

By James A. Haught In 1988, fundamentalist Christians in several nations vented rage and violence because a movie, The Last Temptation of Christ, portrayed Jesus as a wavering human, lusting for the prostitute Mary Magdalene. A Parisian theater showing the film was firebombed, sending 13 people to hospitals. Another at Besancon, France, suffered a similar attack. Tear gas was loosed in some French moviehouses. Israel’s government banned the film. In America, theaters were ransacked, one was burned, another had its… Read more

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