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Archive for the ‘Stupidity’ Category

Vote!

I recently found out that my neighbor has been volunteering for the Republican Party – calling up registered Republicans and reminding them to vote today. This is my neighbor who:
– Believes Abortion should be illegal even in cases of rape and incest.
– Believes in a flat tax with no standard deduction, so someone living at the poverty line has to pay the same percentage of their income in taxes as someone earning a million dollars. This would shift the tax burden off the rich and onto the poor.
– Says that she “doesn’t give a crap about the environment” because “Jesus is coming back soon”.

Vote. Or my crazy neighbor wins.

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The latest freakout: Obama paraphrased a sentence from the Declaration of Independence which states “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” But, left out “by their creator” (actually he left out all the words that I didn’t put in bold: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.“).

He snubbed the Christians! Obviously, he’s into Jeremiah Wright’s radical black-liberation Christianity. He’s obviously a muslim. He’s obviously an atheist.

For the sake of conservative propaganda, please ignore his July 4th, 2010 (transcript) and his May 22, 2010 (transcript, video @ the 24:25 mark) speeches where he does include “endowed by their Creator”.

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The forces of ignorance put together a video. The message of the video? Don’t vaccinate. You’ll just be another sheep following the dictates of “big pharma” and then you’ll be a vaccine zombie.

Two comments on the video:
jfabiani: “So, how many diseases did you cure today, mr. don’t trust doctors?”
“@jfabiani Healing power comes from within, not from an external source.” ~ NaturalNews Staff

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Good job, Ireland.

On Friday July 11th, 2009, Ireland passed the Defamation Bill by one vote. One of the aspects of this bill would make it illegal to criticize religion… any religion under penalty of fines up to 25,000 Euros. That is the equivalent to nearly $35,000.

Section 36

(1) A person who publishes or utters blasphemous matter shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable upon conviction on indictment to a fine not exceeding €100,000. [Amended to €25,000]

(2) For the purposes of this section, a person publishes or utters blasphemous matter if (a) he or she publishes or utters matter that is grossly abusive or insulting in relation to matters held sacred by any religion, thereby causing outrage among a substantial number of the adherents of that religion, and (b) he or she intends, by the publication or utterance of the matter concerned, to cause such outrage.

Ireland passes blasphemy law

I guess Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens might want to avoid Ireland for a while.

Maybe it’s time for the Pastafarians to get angry about some things. I’m sure they could use the anti-blasphamy laws to slap fines on just about anyone they want.

And, I can’t help but worry what Scientology will do with these laws.

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Forecast 2012

This what the forecast will look like in 2012:

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Sometimes I worry about humanity.

In Japan, you are what your blood type is

In the year just ended, four of Japan’s top 10 best-sellers were about how blood type determines personality, according to Japan’s largest book distributor, Tohan Co. The books’ publisher, Bungeisha, says the series – one each for types B, O, A, and AB – has combined sales of well over 5 million copies.

As defined by the books, type As are sensitive perfectionists but overanxious; Type Bs are cheerful but eccentric and selfish; Os are curious, generous but stubborn; and ABs are arty but mysterious and unpredictable.

All that may sound like a horoscope, but the public doesn’t seem to care.

Matchmaking agencies provide blood-type compatibility tests, and some companies make decisions about assignments based on employees’ blood types.

Children at some kindergartens are divided up by blood type, and the women’s softball team that won gold at the Beijing Olympics used the theory to customize each player’s training.

Not all see the craze as harmless fun, and the Japanese now have a term, “bura-hara,” meaning blood-type harassment.

And, despite repeated warnings, many employers continue to ask blood types at job interviews, said Junichi Wadayama, an official at the Health, Welfare and Labor Ministry.
http://www.physorg.com/news152723712.html

Wow. All of those blood type personalities are so totally me.

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There seems to be something about fundamentalist religion that makes people dumb – particularly when the entire culture is immersed in it. A few days ago, this was in the news:

“It is incorrect to say that it’s not permitted to marry off girls who are 15 and younger,” Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al-Sheikh, the kingdom’s grand mufti, said in remarks quoted Wednesday in the regional Al-Hayat newspaper. “A girl aged 10 or 12 can be married. Those who think she’s too young are wrong and they are being unfair to her.” (Source: CNN)

I like how he tried to flip the script: claiming that people who won’t let a 10 year-old girl be married (or should we say forced into a marriage), those are the people who are being unfair. And who better to judge right and wrong than the top cleric of Islam’s most holy nation on earth?

Although, now that I think about it — Mohammed married Aisha when she was only six or seven years old. I guess that puts Muslims in a very weird position if they try to say child brides are wrong. Kinda sad when you think about it: some guy made up a religion, pulled the wool over a bunch of people’s eyes, and now they have to regard his actions as the paragon of virtue – regardless of what they actually were.

And, of course, the Grand Muftis don’t have a very good track record. Allegedly, Ibn Baz (the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia) stated that that the earth is flat back in 1993 – and everyone claiming otherwise should be punished for being an infidel. He has since denied that claim, asserting that he “only” claimed that the earth is stationary while the moon and sun revolve around it (and using the Quran as the basis for that claim). So, suck on that Galileo!

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Every once in a while I stumble on some funny Christian apologetics. The most recent one was an online book titled the “Handbook of Personal Evangelism“. It has 23 chapters of delightful non-sequiturs and bad logic. Some of my favorite arguments:

Below are reasons we believe in God:

3. A person who doesn’t believe in God will have to face the problem of trying to substantiate a negative. This particular negative would be impossible to prove. Here is why.

How can a person prove there is no God? Has this person been everywhere within and without the universe? If there is somewhere he has not been, God might be there. Does this person know everything? If there is something he does not know, that something might be God.

A reason to believe is that you can’t prove it’s not true? This one is always funny to me. No doubt, Dr. A Ray Stanford also believes in bigfoot, UFOs, the Loch Ness monster, and elves. Further, he believes they all live together … with the smurfs – afterall, no one can prove that it isn’t true.

Reasons for Believing the Bible

2. John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist denomination, said something like this: The Bible was written either by –

(a) good men,
(b) bad men, or
(c) God.

(a) If good men wrote the Bible and then claimed it was written by the inspiration of God, they would be liars, and liars are not good men. They would be deceivers, and good men don’t purposely deceive people.

(b) If bad men wrote the Bible, they would be condemning themselves because the Bible condemns sin. Bad men tend to justify themselves, but the Bible never justifies sin. Bad men couldn’t have written the Bible because the Bible is a good book.

(c) Since neither good men nor bad men wrote the Bible, the only person left is God. God wrote the Bible, and it is a MASTERPIECE OF HIS HANDIWORK!

Ah, it’s the old “there are only three possibilities, two are wrong, and therefore the last one must be right!” By this logic, every religion which preaches good is true. And that’s why I’m a Mormon… and a Muslim. And a Cathar, a buddhist, a Bahai, a Hindu, and Hare Krishna. Crap, there’s a lot of religions and cults that taught some good things.

Oh, here’s a bizarre one:

9. The Bible is scientifically accurate.

Jeremiah 10:12 – Einstein’s theory, E=MC^2

Wow. The book of Jeremiah has Einstein’s equation in it?

It is He who made the earth by His power, Who established the world by His wisdom; And by His understanding He has stretched out the heavens.
Jeremiah 10:12

You can’t get any clearer than that. Now I’m starting to think Einstein stole his famous equation from Jeremiah. In fact, I think I’m going to start referring to it as “Jerimiah’s equation of mass–energy equivalence”, and Wikipedia needs a bit of updating. To all you nonbelievers: “Checkmate!”

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The latest This American Life has an interesting little story on some anti-vaccination parents – and what happened when measles spread through the community. (It starts at 14 minutes into the episode and is 22 minutes long.)

I haven’t really delved much into the anti-vaccination movement, though I hear other skeptics talk about it.

It was interesting to hear them describe the anti-vaccination movement as being driven by people who don’t trust the system (well, that and a paranoid fear of vaccination and over-protective parenting). In one part of the story, an anti-vaccination mother describes how a doctor tried to pressure her into giving her child a vaccination (or at least that’s how she describes it). She felt uncomfortable with the whole situation, and gave in. Then drew this conclusion: “His agenda really – I could tell at that point – was he was going to get a DTaP into my child because he felt like he could force me to… Doing further research … the vaccination was completely unnecessary, so that just ruined my faith even more. It sort of hit me like – wow, is it really this bad – you know? So that was – yeah, it was a big moment for me.” I just couldn’t believe it. Why in the world did she think he wanted the child to get vaccinated? What was his motive – other than doing the most responsible thing for the child? Did she think the doctor loves sticking needles into children? Did she think he had some ulterior motive? I’m sure he would’ve had the same reaction if she was letting her children play with loaded guns, or using faith-healing instead of going to the hospital. Any responsible person should get angry when misguided parents put their children at risk. Somehow, she twisted around his pressure to get her child vaccinated into some kind of a “they’re the bad people who shouldn’t be trusted”. It’s horrendously bad logic at it’s finest.

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Golf Astrology

I nominate this for the most ridiculous book I’ve seen all year. It has a chapter for each astrological sign, giving you personalized advice on what you should wear on the golf course, the preferred signs of your golf partners, and whether or not you should buy used clubs.

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