HOT TOPICS



8/20/14

Classic Emails (2 pages)

I Sent this email to Flip Benham of Operation Save America

Response to their "About" page

Yes, this is the same group of misfits who used to be called "Operation Rescue." After all the murders and bombings, they thought they could give themselves a makeover by changing their name to something really patriotic like "Operation Save America." But no matter how fancy you dress up a pig ... it's still a pig.



8/19/14

Let's take a break and watch some standup with Jim Jefferies (9:52)





8/18/14

Scientists achieve a milestone in the race to harness nuclear fusion





8/17/14

This week's show was:

"The vacant presidency"

Featuring: Charles Krauthammer

The Science Segment was:
"Earth's gravity deforms the moon"

Listen (20:12)
OR
Read (10 pages)

To participate in the live debate, go to:
"Talkshoe.com" on any Saturday night at 9pm (Eastern time)
and click "join a call" - then select "The Skeptic Arena" (ID#45435)
You may just listen, type in comments, or you can debate by phone (724-444-7444)



8/16/14

Sam Harris on the morality of God (3:45)





8/15/14

Should you take vitamin supplements?

With 2/3's of Americans classified as either fat or obese,
vitamin deficiencies are extremely rare.
That means that fat folks (the middle 1/3) ... are the norm.



8/14/14

The scientific connection between religion and brain damage (4:21)





8/13/14



After reading the story, now you can ...

watch this snake in action (5:00)



8/12/14

Afterlife (9:45)





8/11/14



The old TV game show "Let's Make A Deal" hosted by Monty Hall, presented a contestant with 3 doors. Behind one door was a fabulous prize. Behind the other two doors were worthless consolation prizes. After a contestant selected a door (say #1), Monty would then reveal what was behind one of the two unchosen doors (say #2). The door Monty opened would always contain a worthless consolation prize. Monty would then ask the contestant "Before I open the door you selected (#1), do you want to switch your door for the one remaining door (#3), or do you want to keep your door?" The contestant would then either switch doors (#1 for #3) or keep their door, and then Monty would open the door that the contestant had chosen.

Should the contestant switch doors or keep the original one? Intuition convinces most people that, regardless of the removal of one door, you now have a choice between 2 doors, giving them a 50% chance of winning. Most contestants will keep the original door to avoid the regret, in case they lose, that would result from mistrusting their original intuition.

The truth is that the odds are 2-1 in favor of switching doors!

If the explanations you have read for the "Monty Hall" problem seem confusing, try this one:

1) 1/3 of the time you will initially choose the winning door while 2/3 of the time you will initially choose a losing door.

2) The only way to win if you keep your door is if you chose the winning door initially: this happens 1/3 of the time.

3) The only way to win if you switch doors is if you chose a losing door initially: this happens 2/3 of the time.

So you double your chances of winning ... by switching doors.

(This is an excellent example of Bayes' Theorem, which, when translated into English, states that prior events must be taken into consideration when computing future probabilities)



8/9/14

Bart Ehrman discusses "Is the Bible reliable?" (14:47)





8/8/14

First ever evidence of a comet striking Earth



8/7/14

Betty Bowers on Abortion in the Bible (4:06)



8/6/14

One reason behind the Christian anti-vax movement in the U.S. (1 page)



8/5/14

The Arkansas state constitution says:
“No person who denies the being of a God shall hold any office
in the civil departments of the state; nor be competent to stand trial.”

So, only if you have invisible, imaginary friends
are you considered sane enough to stand trial?

I think we've found that planet described in old Superman comic books,
called Bizzaro World, where everything was completely ass backwards.

It's called Earth; and it's capital is located in Arkansas.

I swear to all that's visible, if aliens visited Earth right now ...
they would institutionalize the vast majority of Earth's inhabitants.



8/1/14

Here's one birdbrain who is a lot smarter than some human birdbrains.





7/31/14

The Thinking Atheist visits the Creation Museum in Kentucky (13:22)



7/30/14

Christian woman annihilates pro-life argument



7/29/14

1 Corinthians 11:14
"Doth not even nature itself teach you, that,
if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?"



That's where we got the phrase
"Do as I say ... not as I do."



7/28/14

The psychology behind irrational thinking



7/26/14

Christian girl finds out that her imaginary friends aren't real.

"But they told me I could live forever"



So when people ask "What's the harm?"

Here's just one more piece of evidence to throw on the pile.



7/25/14

Scientists find plenty of easily accessible water on Mars

One obstacle down ... thousands to go
(but that one was huge)



7/20/14

Child brides: 21st century shame (2:52)





7/19/14

This is the story of a very smart man.
It is also an example of what can happen to a very smart man
when he allows his ego to experience "cosmic inflation."

Eliezer Yudkowsky

When you have a scientific consensus backing you up:
you have every right to dig in and defend science.

But when you don't:
strutting around like a lovesick peacock ...
may not be the best strategy



7/18/14

Blasphemy laws threaten freedom of speech worldwide (8:58)



Now you know what Christian life was like for centuries, before they got dragged, kicking and screaming, out of the Dark Ages. Islam is waaay overdue.



7/17/14

Imagine an intelligent alien with a brain that is distributed throughout its many arms. Well that alien lives right here on Earth ... right now.





7/16/14

The Christian God is either impotent or evil by Sam Harris (10:06)



Even if God exists, He is either impotent or evil.
That's what I call ... a Lose-Lose.



7/15/14

So how did the Bush tax cuts work out for America
when we look back and do the math?

You need to read this to get the full effect of what was done to us



7/14/14

So was God ever married?
and if so, how did that marriage work out?

Aholah and Aholibah

Do you really think this guy, God, is in a position to be giving marital advice?



7/12/14

Jamy Ian Swiss explains how villians can look at themselves in the mirror (8:08)





7/11/14

Spanish town of Castrillo Matajudios votes to change its name

The next time you hear someone talk about "Judeo-Christian" values, as if those two are best friends, be sure to tell them about this story which represents the true history of Judeo-Christian relations.



7/10/14

Astronomers discover densest galaxy



7/9/14

Creeping Sharia in Britain

Total, complete control over every aspect of a person's life ... that defines religion.



7/8/14

Remember how the Supreme Court assured us that the Hobby Lobby decision was a narrow decision that did not mean that religious ideology would be allowed to run wild?

Well ... they lied.

And amazingly, they weren't proven to be liars by others,
but by contradicting their own position written only days earlier.

Justice Sotomayor opens up a can of whoop ass

At this point, they don't even bother with appearances anymore. They simply push their religious beliefs on everyone else, in smirking defiance of our Constitution.

"Constitution? We don't need no stinking Constitution."

Corporations are people and Jesus is Lord ... so says the Supreme Court.

Am I upset?

You must be kidding. I could not have been born at a better time; and there is no place on Earth I would rather be than at ground zero (Christian America). I live for combat - I could not be happier.

Battle Stations!



7/7/14

Physicist Sean Carroll on time travel (1:06:03)
I recommend you watch the whole video - it's very interesting.
See if you can spot any errors.



When Carroll talked about a party on Alpha Centauri
I'm sure he meant to say "a party on a planet orbiting Alpha Centauri."

I think we can give him a break on that one.

But the more serious disagreement I have with his lecture is this:
Beginning after the 29-minute mark and lasting for about 15 minutes, Carroll explains Einstein's theory. He presents a diagram showing someone entering a black hole, following the curved path of his light cone, and then meeting up with his past self (the one who entered the black hole).

The problem with this theory is that, if you meet your past self, then the atoms that make you "you" would have to be in two places at the same time. The laws of physics do not allow atoms to have this property. In Carroll's imaginary scenario, whatever you are looking at - it cannot be you. It may be something that looks like you ... but it cannot be you.

The argument that even if you aren't the same person, you still could have traveled back in time also fails because to do so would require that every particle in the Universe be in exactly the same position as it was at the time you entered the black hole, and obviously, that is impossible.



7/5/14

Survey finds Americans are becoming more skeptical of the Bible

So what took them so long? The Bible hasn't changed, has it?

(Oops! I almost forgot about all those dozens of different Bible versions)

I think the real reason why people are waking up is because of the anonymity granted by the internet, which has given people a degree of safety never known before. They can now express themselves with far less fear of reprisal. They can find support from groups of rational people, even if they live in a forsaken area like the Bible Belt.

And the best news is the demographic. This age group represents the future.
And the future is looking a whole lot brighter ... than the past.



7/4/14

Even after the United States passed Obamacare

We still rank last in healthcare

And if Republicans could have their way,
they would give new meaning to the word "last"
by returning America to its old system.



7/3/14

Look at that baby howling in pain



As the story said, the pain may not be the worst part; it can get a lot worse.

How much longer will modern nations refuse to protect children
from the barbaric religious practices of Ghost Worshiping parents?

(probably as long as they remain in the majority)



7/2/14

The Skeptic Arena's take on ... Alexander the Great (1 page)





7/1/14

Ideological Supreme Court votes 5-4 (as usual)
to defecate on our Constitution


I have a question - during all those years that Hobby Lobby owner Steve Green and his lovely, ultra-rich wife Barbara were providing health insurance for their employees (which included contraception coverage) ... why were their religious beliefs not offended?

Were they Atheists?
No - quite the opposite.

Did Jesus visit them one night and scold them for not being offended?
Not likely.

Did their business become financially strapped for cash?
No, they are America's largest arts and crafts chain.

Was it - oh, I don't know - maybe when Obamacare was ruled constitutional that the Greens became filled with the Holy Spirit, and suddenly decided that they had been wrong all those years during the Bush administration when they provided health care for their employees (which included contraception coverage)?

BINGO!

The Oklahoma Bible Belt strikes back at that uppity negro.
(whom they have failed to beat, twice, in democratic elections)

The entire premise of Hobby Lobby's argument is that their religious beliefs were offended. I have just proven that they were not. Their religious beliefs were fine with providing contraception under Bush. Therefore ... they have no valid argument. That point alone should have resulted in a 9-0 decision against Hobby Lobby.

Now you see the insidiousness of the decision by the Roberts Supreme Court to grant personhood to corporations. They have now extended that decision to include, not only freedom of speech, but also to grant religious freedom to corporations - freedoms originally designed for humans.

Corporations are not people any more than people are just atoms. In both cases ideologues intentionally try to mislead you by trying to convince you that the parts are the whole, when in fact, they only contribute to the whole.

Explanation: When atoms combine to form organs, the whole person gains new abilities, not available to the unorganized atoms. When people organize into groups and buy assets for a corporation, the corporation is now far more than just a collection of people. In each case, the whole is far more than merely the sum of its parts.

THAT is how they are trying to trick you.



6/30/14

Neuroscientists find biological basis for lack of empathy in psychopaths

So now we know how to fix Americans who identify with "The Tea Party":
A simple procedure that implants a functional ventromedial prefrontal cortex.



6/28/14

It's hard to believe how delusional Britain's Prime Minister, David Cameron is.
But when you look around at the world's leaders
and remember some of our own, like the Bush Boys
it just may be ...

a requirement of the job



6/27/14

Thad Cochran defeats Tea Party candidate in republican primary ...

Thanks to African-American democrats

Was that really a smart thing to do?

Democrats have a much better chance of defeating an extremist Tea Party candidate in the general election, than they do of beating long-time incumbent Thad Cochran.

In their zeal to stick it to the racist, they may have shot themselves in the foot.

If they had thought with their minds instead of with their emotions, African-American democrats would have turned out in force and voted for the Tea Party Asshole ... then in November, they could bask in sweet revenge by sending him home in tears. Now they're going to have to deal with Cochran.



6/26/14

No matter how big or how small you are ... life is brutal.

White killer cell hunts down bacterium (0:51)

Amoeba attacks 2 paramecium (0:44)



6/25/14

Classic Emails (2 pages)

Jeff Miller, PHD, responds to my show which featured him last Saturday ...

And I responded back

I haven't received a reply from him yet.
(Oh dear - I hope I didn't offend. PHD's can be so ... sensitive)



6/24/14

Here is a story which is becoming more and more common

Churches transformed into homes



6/23/14

Even Megyn Kelly of Fox News has finally reached the breaking point
with conservative bullshit (includes video - 10:40)
Here is the priceless quote from Dick Cheney:

“Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong,
about so much, at the expense of so many”


Oh ... the irony



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