Friday, March 31, 2006
Annoying Question Number 1:
What if you're wrong? If I, a theist, am wrong, nothing happens I have nothing to lose. If you are wrong, however, you have everything to lose! Wouldn't it be safer to just believe?
You know, you're absolutely right. It would be much safer to be an a-one, righteous, fearing believer! So, if you don't mind, I'll hitch a ride with you to the local Temple, where we both must begin our conversion process to be able to enter the world of Orthodox Judaism. You'd better take a bath, and get ready spiritually, because you're going to have to get circumcized. If you're already circumcized, you're not off the hook. The ceremony of Hatafat Dam Brit is required--they need your blood. Then you'll need the mikveh, during the tevillah., and then...well, our Rabbi will be able to tell us.
After that, in the spirit of safety, we should consider Mormonism. You never know. God might live in Salt Lake City! It might be a fucking second alto in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir! To be safe, you should consider wearing the underwear in the shower.
We have absolutely no goddamned idea of who god is, and what it wants. According to the agnostics, we can't ever know what it wants with us. So, your next conversion, in my opinion, should be Santeria. It couldn't hurt to slit a few chicken throats just in case Ogun wants blood. If you've ever read the King James bible, you should know that gods tend to like the smell of dead animals.
Finally, we should both get out our checkbooks and prepare to schedule a few sessions with the old E-Meter aty our local Church of Scientology. It's a possiblity that the only way to escape our fate is with a few hundred thousand dollars towards the ability to leave our very bodies, just like L Ron Hubbard did. Who knows? You might be able to hang out with Kirstie Alley and some loudmouth manic depressive whose name escapes me.
You didn't actually assume that your particular religion was the default one, did you? After all, there are thousands of religions out there--not to mention the denominations of Protestantism, all declaring that their practices are the one true religion. And there you are, a complacent monotheist. I always thought monotheism was a stupid position: after all, you couldn't possibly be omniscient. Have you looked all over the universe in case there might be more gods out there, with all manner of idiosynchracies? How much chance do you have just believing to "be safe" when even the nice people in your wonderful book had to scramble to trick the Angel of Death every other Friday night, whom had a proclivity for young boys, ? And are you eating hamburgers on Friday? Should you eat hamburgers at all? Are they blessed?
I have another proposition for you. You can live in fear that you're pleasing all the right gods with your obsessive-compulsive practices, worrying that Jehovah or Ogun or the Angel of Death is hiding behind the next corner, or you can throw it all in the dustbin and be a normal human being who lives by the laws of causality just like everything else in the universe. If it turns out you only have one chance at life, I'm betting on the second choice.
Thursday, March 30, 2006
Dear internet diary,
Recently I was disappointed to find that a dear friend of mine had done publicity work for PETA: People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. I haven't kept in touch very well with my friend, and assume she doesn't know much about PETA's activities and retarded positions on animals. I'm pretty sure she doesn't, because in the publicity shoot, she asked the audience to "spay and neuter your pets."
Sure, PeTa believes in spaying and neutering. But does PeTA even believe in pets?
(Pets) are slaves, even if well-kept slaves." --PeTa's Statement on Companion Animals.
"The cat, like the dog, must disappear..... We should cut the domestic cat free from our dominance by neutering, neutering, and more neutering, until our pathetic version of the cat ceases to exist."
-John Bryant, Fettered Kingdoms: An Examination of a Changing Ethic, PETA 1982, p.15.
In a perfect world, all other-than-human animals would be free of human interference, and dogs and cats would be part of the ecological scheme, as they were before humans domesticated them and as they remain in some parts of the undeveloped world.---PETA pamphlet, Companion Animals: Pets or Prisoners?
"One day we would like an end to pet shops and breeding animals [Dogs] would pursue their natural lives in the wild."
-Ingrid Newkirk, Chicago Daily Herald, March 1, 1990
Found at Animal Rights.net
Even if keeping pets is slavery, PeTA advocates keeping pets from shelters. So I suppose, if we should rescue pets from shelters, we should also make slaves of people. If they are going to make the argument that pets are slaves, then they should by all means either release their own pets immediately, or keep people as slaves if said people would be better off. That is, if they want to remain morally consistent. I'm weird that way.
Similarly, PeTA sees eating and killing animals as a "holocaust." If so, they should also kill human beings, since they do a much better job killing animals themselves than they do finding slave owners for them. According to the state of Virginia, PeTA killed about 90% of the animals it bragged about saving.Many Humane Society branches claim an 85-95% adoption rate in its shelters. If I ever lost my pet, I think it would fare much better with the local dogcatcher than its likely deadly fate with a PeTA group--which tends to protest the dogcatcher.
I say, if you love animals, you do not love PeTA.
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
This is a parody of Dark Dungeons, by Jack T Chick.
Funny I should mention that, but I, too, have a parody of Dark Dungeons. And you, you lucky reader, will be able to hear it for free, unlike everyone else who has to pay about a dollar for it over in our Freethought Media Store. Cool, eh?
So, without further ado, I give you
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
Dear Internet Diary,
Have you heard that the banana proves creationism? It's true! Listen to Ray Comfort:
Behold! The Atheist's Nightmare!Yes, that was the one where the banana wearing a tie knocked on the doughnut's door and said "Do yo like working so hard every day? Have you heard about Amway, God's new covenant of wealth?" Terrible dream.
Now if you study a well-made banana you'll find...What--God fucks up some of His bananas?
Actually, "God" doesn't make bananas. Man does. It's called "horticulture." A God-made banana--you wouldn't want to eat it.
The banana and the hand are perfectly made one for the others.Actually, the glove is made for the human hand. Maybe the natural banana was made for the chimp--our cousin's--hand. The banana was made bigger, by us, because people like their fruit bigger.
You'll find the maker of the banana, Almighty God, has made it with a non-slip surface.Can't say as much for the other side of the surface. You know another fruit that almighty God made with a non-slip surface? The Prickly Pear. Tastes like strawberries. It actually tastes better than the banana. Not exactly made to fit the human hand, eh?
You'll find a wrapper which is biodegradeable, has perforations.Fruit skin is generally biodegradeable like that. Is your designed soda-can you were just demonstrating bio-degradeable? As far as the easy-to open thing, if the banana proves creationism, the coconut disproves it. And it doesn't easily fit...
Notice how gracefully it sits over the human hand. Notice it has a point at the top for ease of entry, it's just the right shape for the human mouth
I saw how you looked at Kirk Cameron when you said that. You old dog, you.
So lets sing the praises of artificial selection: that people tend to select toward the traits that people want. Because, if you ever had to try and live on so-called "god-made" fruits and vegetables, you'd have to wonder about how much this God person knows about his own children.
Monday, March 27, 2006
I think it is very important that we teach our children about the true nature of government. ... In my own experience as a father, I have discovered several simple devices that can illustrate to a child's mind the principles on which the modern state deals with its citizens. You may find them helpful too...... (continues)
Welcome to Vox Machina, the voice of the machine. Vox Machina is a web application that can convert your text input into a spoken word MP3 file. This conversion takes place on-the-fly using Apple's Mac OS X speech synthesizer and the open-source LAME audio encoder. A Mac OS X desktop application is also freely available.
I tried it out and it is indeed a joy. Listen to what it can do to my newest addition to the Living Bible, from the Book Of Peter....Cottontail:
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Mdtomn: Humanity is there now. We're IN Hell. We're apart from God. And while we don't always realize it, it's hell. It's a horrible way to be.
Alleee replies: : I find your interpretation of scripture curious. Where does Jesus say that hell has chocolate, orgasms, Mozart, and rollercoasters? I don't understand why a God would kill himself (and that's not even debatable, he didn't kill himself at all) to "save us" from chocolate, orgasms, Mozart and rollercoasters. It seems to me that you're selling life a teensy bit short. (And just so you don't jump on me, life also includes love, morality, values, family, motherhood and truth--and you're not going to find that in death, sucka.)
Think about kids beaten by their parents, and minorities suffering mistreatment by the majority. Keep in mind that despite everything we try to do, those things will all be that way tomorrow - maybe less so, maybe better, but still there.
There you go again. You mention child beating and suffering--which God made--but you fail to mention the fact the he's supposed to save us from orgasms and Mozart. God has a funky way of saving us from Parasitic childhood deformity--which he made, and orgasms, which he also supposedly made. He forgot that he could have just made a world without those things.
It's about a man willing to say "love thy enemy as thyself" turn the other cheek, give up everything you ever had and follow him, etc
..which is pretty screwed up. I already explained the first part, but there have been many people in history who said "give up everything you value and follow me." These folks are called cult leaders. Might I remind you of the scripture where Jesus said to fathers to fuck their families and leave them? To turn against everyone they love, and in fact, you aren't worthy of following him if you don't do that?
Regardless of what your beliefs are, my post was not about whose the true christian. I am quite aware of what christianity is. I wish I could take its basis--original sin--and flush it away so that it was as if it never existed. Chritstianity, for all of its solicitousness in trying to sell itself as a religion of love and selflessness, is a religion of death, misery, and hatred for life.
The best Christians (very rare, now days), are already in heaven in every meaningful way. In their experience of God's love, they can love everyone else so completely that all distinctions, all limitations, fall away.
Now, I sure as heck am not there. And few are. But that's what some of us are trying to reach. And, if you want to try to reach it too, you can drop by some of the cool Mainstream Churches - Episcopalians, Methodists, Luterans, etc.
No, thanks. What about Lutherans makes them so enlightened? Or "the best Christians?" (The best wouldn't be the best if they weren't "rare.)
I was a Presbyterian for my whole conscious childhood. You have to wonder why the Wesleyans would warn against following Calvin, and vice-versa. That doesn't seem too enlightened to me. as far as "being in heaven" is concerned, your ideas cannot be found within Calvinistic or Wesleyan teachings, but I know a few new-agers who dabble in what they call "the eastern religions" who might agree partially. I don't really care much that you don't agree with your own scripture, especially with "cool mainstream" denominations, but fella, I'm sorry: you're just not consistent. And I still have love, passion, Mozart, orgasms, chocolate, morality, and the warm fuzzies. And a little bit of enlightenment. I suppose that's pretty "rare nowadays," too. (But the way I say it sounds better). Basically, I don't need more than the world. The world is good enough for me.
Anyway, keep in mind that Christian theology and history are a lot more complex than many modern "Christian" adherents know, particularly those who make television and politics. There's a lot more there there than this stuff.I know. It's pretty complex. But it's not complex enough to make the belief in the justness of hell a good moral principle.
Earlier this month Republicans in South Dakota successfully banned abortion in that state. Last week the GOP-controlled state house of representatives in Missouri voted to ban state-funded family-planning clinics from dispensing birth control. "If you hand out contraception to single women," (and, apparently, married ones--alleee) one Republican state rep told the Kansas City Star, "we're saying promiscuity is okay." On the federal level, Republicans are blocking the over-the-counter sale of emergency contraception and keeping a 100 percent effective HPV vaccine—a vaccine that will save the lives of thousands of women every year—from being made available.
The GOP's message to straight Americans: If you have sex, we want it to fuck up your lives as much as possible. No birth control, no emergency contraception, no abortion services, no life-saving vaccines. If you get pregnant, tough shit. You're going to have those babies, ladies, and you're going to make those child-support payments, gentlemen. And if you get HPV and it leads to cervical cancer, well, that's too bad. Have a nice funeral, slut.
What's it going to take to get a straight-rights movement off the ground? The GOP in Kansas is seeking to criminalize hetero heavy petting, for God's sake! Wake up and smell the freaking Holy War, breeders! The religious right hates heterosexuality just as much as it hates homosexuality. Fight back!
I'd like to add that the GOP is making it clear that it hates female heterosexuality. When it bans female contraception specifically, you know what they mean. They want us to blow them, they want to fuck us, they want to slap us in the face, call us sluts and get the hell out. If you think for one minute that those Old Boys in congress--whether it's a state or federal congress--aren't going out to strip bars, and later in the evening hiring themselves a slut on whose face they can blow their republican wad, then you're seriously naive, and probably think that a "wad" is a roll of dollars.
And that's what a congressman really calls "birth control."
Friday, March 24, 2006
From The Raw Story:
Resisting calls by moderates from both sides, as well as public statements by President Bush, South Dakota lawmakers have rejected the idea of allowing exemptions for cases of rape or incest to the state's abortion ban. One backer of the bill, State Senator Bill Napoli, argued on PBS's Newshour that if a victim had followed strict religious guidelines, her life would be endangered by the pregnancy. Under this scenario, she would be eligible for an abortion.
FRED DE SAM LAZARO: Napoli says most abortions are performed for what he calls "convenience." He insists that exceptions can be made for rape or incest under the provision that protects the mother's life. I asked him for a scenario in which an exception may be invoked.
BILL NAPOLI: A real-life description to me would be a rape victim, brutally raped, savaged. The girl was a virgin. She was religious. She planned on saving her virginity until she was married. She was brutalized and raped, sodomized as bad as you can possibly make it, and is impregnated. I mean, that girl could be so messed up, physically and psychologically, that carrying that child could very well threaten her life.
Here is my musical interpretation Download Savaged in South Dakota
Dear Internet Diary,
St. Paul City Office Boots Easter Bunny
A small Easter display was removed from the City Hall lobby on Wednesday out of concern that it would offend non-Christians.
The display _ a cloth Easter bunny, pastel-colored eggs and a sign with the words "Happy Easter" _ was put up by a City Council secretary. They were not purchased with city money.
Get out your bibles and turn to the Book of Peter......Cottontail.
And the Rabbit, which cheweth the cud, didst lay down its Egg-of-Many-Colours, when The Lord came upon him. Immediately the Lord did find another opportunity to make unto man an object lesson:
And the brightest and stripiest of eggs are those that are the hardest to find. For Lo! Thereupon the Blessed Holy Forsythia Bush that shineth with the glorious Yellow, for there, there LOOK! For there lyest the crystaline MArshmallow Peep, tempting all with its sugary goodness. Take not the Peep, but takest it to the People. And all who take not the Peep to the people will burn as the branches of the bare bush.
Let us pray,
Easter Bunny, please leave me some chocolate, or at least a non-toxic facimile created in a factory off the New Jersey turnpike, several beautiful eggs that I will dye myself sitting at the kitchen table with my Paas egg dyes, excluding the one egg that I experiemented on by dipping it in all 6 colours and it turned out brown--give that to my sister, O Jack of the Rabbit, O Oskar Hase. Leave me some Peeps, a new ridiculous easter hat, and most of all, giant white scary Harvey rabbit, leave me a stuffed bunny made in your image. One more thing: I'll pass on the baby chick, because I don't want my little sister to have to go through the same Bad Boy Bubby incident we went through last year. Amen.
Praise his soft and fluffy name.
Thanks for listening.
(story via J-Walk Blog)
Thursday, March 23, 2006
I am interested in this phraseI am privileged with the knowledge that everything that happens in the universe, from my mundane, day-to-day life, to the beginnings of life itself, to the end of the lives of countless heavenly bodies in space, is all due to natural processes. Everything that happens is natural, and everything that exists is natural.
By natural processes I take it you mean matter behaving according to the laws of physics and chemistry ...........but how do you explain on one beautiful watery planet the laws of entropy are reversed and the miraculous complex and diverse life exists ....we are living proof of something strange ocurring .....look out into the cold recesses of space ...........here on this planet a miracle has occurred .....now either that miracle is a result of chance .........astronomical chance........or an intelligent creator.......as a christian I dont pretend that I became one as a result of rational thought but by Gods intervention.....but I do veiw it as a rational point of veiw , one of several atheism being one of them,given the evidence..
Unfortunately you are mistaken about the laws of entropy on earth being broken! The good news is we are still looking at natural processes, because of that big ol' ball of energy in the sky called "the sun!"
thank you for your polite answer. Evolutionists use the addition of energy to try to explain away a remarkable event. If you dont beleive in God you have to. Why is it good news ...only if you dont wish to beleive in God .....science isnt a static thing.....in the pure sciences ...physics and chemistry ....you can do experiments the variables are more limited ....they are less affected by the design of the experiment....the subject is less complicated .........but biology is so complex and the experimenter is a creature himself so the outcomes are much more affected by the design of the experiment and the outcome the scientist desires ......the concept that the energy input from the sun allows the earth to be not considered a closed system and therefore allowing a simply proven law to be controverted (is that a word?should be) ....is just an unproven throwaway line ....the truth is no one knows ....and evolutionists should say they dont know ....it could be a natural process or it could be a creator ....and this point should not be a stumbling block to those becoming convinced (supernaturally) of the reality of a personal God .
If you believe your questions to be so important, why don`t you contact a scientist? If your questions have not been pondered and answered before, then they would be very important to science. If your challenges are good enough to change our current understanding of science, then you could be a very important person indeed. What I suggest is you try to find out more about what the second law of thermodynamics is. Perhaps you could write to a science magazine.
Do you believe in everything? Is the reason you don't believe in certain things or just because you don't want to?
It is good news that the earth runs on natural processes because we can know things. If the world was controlled by a magical thing, then we could never rely on our senses, or our knowledge. We could never know that what we see, or what we remembe,r is correct or incorrect. If the world ran on a magical, jealous, and violent character, we could not rely on information like "look both ways before you cross the street," "washing helps kill dangerous germs," and "most plants need a lot of sun and good soil in order to grow." In a magical world, you could not know whether or not you are acting on free will, especially if the Christian bible stories are true. If God can harden a pharaoh's heart, or make a devil go into a person to make him do bad things, then you can never know that what you do is your choice, or that cause and effect are real.
That is why it is good news. You do not have to believe in such a bad character, and you do not have to be so intellectually inconsistent that you have to rationalize away why you believe in a christian or Jewish god, and not a Hindu or ancient Norse one.
Have a seat. Would you like some coffee, tea?
I asked you here today to discuss the fact that you deserve to be beaten, tortured, and humiliated. Your thoughts are crimes worthy of sexual humiliation and agonizing pain, for as long as the torturers can keep it up.
In fact, it's not just your thoughts. It's what your ancestors thought. Don't blame me; that's just how it is.
It's not my fault, you see, because, by thinking those thoughts, you have chosen to be branded with hot metal and repeatedly, brutally sodomized. You have said, through your thoughts and actions, that you want to be chained down on a splintery rack, stretched, and shat upon by rabid livestock, while buzzards peck out your eyes. You said, "hey, mister. Would you mind putting me in an episode of twilight zone, where I slowly go into a psychological horror, despair and despondency, never to receive comfort from another human being? That would be great." Hey--that was you talking. Not me.
But you can take it all back. You can escape from your shame. All you have to do is to agree with me, and your unforgiveable thought-crimes will be erased. Admit that your thoughts are vile, and that you are vile, and that you deserve to sit in a hot tub full of feces and vomit, and handed a large spoon, and you will escape the fate of someone peeling your skin off and forcing you into an iodone and lime juice shower.
But the best part of all this, is if you admit you deserve to slide down a giant razor blade into a pond full of pirhana and Amazon Urethra fish, you will be able to hang out with me. Isn't that great? What good news that is!
Now, aren't you glad we could have this talk? If more people realized that people as different as we can have a civil exchange of ideas, we wouldn't be having these problems. I just wish that the other people, the ones like you, weren't so unreasonably hostile.
Thanks for listening.
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
Download his surprise live appearance (audio) in Glasgow from Rapidshare.
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
From The Essentials of Eternal Life:
Believe in Jesus Christ
When we repent of our sins, we realize that we cannot save ourselves and that we are in need of a Savior. That is why Jesus Christ came and died for our sins and took the punishment for sins that we deserved on the cross. We must believe, from our hearts (not just our minds) that Jesus died for our sins and that He rose again three days later to show His power over death.
How is this moral? Let's forget, for a moment, that we certainly do not deserve to be crucified for any of our deeds, let alone our thoughts. Where, in any human circumstance, is it moral for one person to take the punishment for another?
Certainly some, in America, at least, have been put to death for the crimes of someone else, because of bad council, or mistaken identity. This is a tragedy. It's possible that some do not care if the wrong person was accused, and died, for a murder, as long as someone "paid." This is also immoral. The killer has not "paid" for his crime, and may go on killing. If the loved ones are satisfied by someone, anyone, dying for the crime, this is due to insanity, not morality.
Do you watch police shows, or action movies? Have you ever heard the line, "don't hurt the girl. Take me, instead." The noble sacrifice of the hero. Is this a good analogy for Jesus' so-called "sacrifice?" Well, who is doing the hurting? An all-good, all-moral God, or a desperate and evil kidnapper? The criminal wants a victim to hold hostage in order to get something from whomever he wants to hurt. Is this the kind of individual we worship? Is God satisfied, as long as someone dies? Is this moral?
Patty Smith sang, "Jesus died for somebody's sins, but not mine." This is like the idea that Jesus was maybe real, but not a divine savior. He was a victim, but maybe he nobly sacrificed his body, maybe he took the punishment for someone, but generational curses don't exist. Gloria is a free spirit. But the group CRASS made a much more accurate statement in Asylum:
Many Christians like to point out that with Jesus' sacrifice, came the end of sacrificial religion. Before Jesus' sacrifice, we had to slaughter a lamb or something valuable that had lots of blood in order to pay respect to God. How primitive, but how great of God to send himself, his son, to bring light into the world. Therefore
Jesus died for his own sins, not mine.
In this interpretation, God diverts attention from the fact that His commands were so primitive and ugly by pulling a Penn-and-Tellerlike fake suicide stunt. This is a more "evil tricks to play on your friends" routine that followed the little parlour tricks he played, like turning water into wine. This would be the big, showstopping trick, full fo blood and emotion, a trick for the more sophisticated, jaded, modern mind. He appears as a human sacrificial lamb, pure, and sinless like the unicorn. Then--get this, he allows himself to be humiliated and beaten, and left hanging in the sun to dry and die, for eight-Blain-a-riffic days, only to magically emerge from the sealed cave, clean and white, evewn allowing someone from the audience to examine his wounds! You'd think that this would be THE finale--but wait! The Amazing Jesus then flies over the audience and disappears into the clouds! Wow! (Applause)
Jesus didn't die for our sins. He died for our entertainment.
Sorry for heading off into an unexpected tangent. Hope you enjoyed it, anyway.
Download audio from Rapidshare
Sunday, March 19, 2006
I've just been reading the FAQ on the site of the Fellowship of Christian Magicians, who edited "Magic for Dummies."
Remember the episode of King of the Hill where Bobby Hill played the Amazing Jesus in front of a speechlessly offended group of parents? He was turning water into wine, making loaves and fishes, that kind of thing. If you don't get it already, I'll make it unfunny for you: he was implying that Jesus could have been nothing but a sleight-of-hand conjurer, since he had no trouble doing Jesus' "miracles" of the bible.
Of course, Bobby wasn't "doing" the miracles at all. The job of magicians is to make it look like they are doing something that they most certainly are not.
I recall Penn Jilette talking about his experiences doing his show in Vegas with Teller, and this was confirmed by the personal experiences of Criss Angel. No matter how clearly you explain to the audience that "this is a trick, and this is how it's done," there are always people that believe deeply that Penn, Teller, or Criss Angel have magical powers. Maybe that's why it only took a few cheap quarter tricks for Blaine or Uri Geller to believe them.
But the Fellowship of Christian Magicians knows that this deception is the key to spreading the Gospel. They see that, instead of proving that Jesus was doing cheap parlour-tricks, they are being very much like God:
The second part of a Biblical basis for Gospel magic is God's own use of the spectacular as an attention-getting device. He could have dealt with people without using the miraculous, but with Moses He chose to use a bush that burned without being consumed, with Balaam He used a talking donkey; with Joshua He used a destructive trumpet blast to bring down the walls of Jericho, and with Belshazzar He wrote on the wall with a giant hand.
But perhaps most spectacular of all are the descriptions of the events surrounding the death and resurrection of Jesus. It could have happened without a lot of fanfare, but Christs death was accompanied by darkness and earthquake. The resurrection was accompanied by a blast of light that left the guards stunned and dazed.
I have seen some very impressive and effective use of "magic" to illustrate principles from the Scripture. When sleight of hand and illusion are harnessed for the purpose of explaining Gospel principles, it can be very powerful from a psychological point of view.
The FAQ makes the distinction between the magic gospel-spreader, and the magician-for entertainment:
The Gospel magician could easily be confused with the secular entertainer, or worse, with the occultist, just as the Christian singer could be identified with the acid-dropping Satanist, or the preacher could be linked with the immoral talk-show host.
We would never. But here is the big compartmentalization:
Some Christians are very superstitious and assume that anything they cannot themselves understand and explain must be supernatural. Hence they see negative effects as being produced by demons, and every positive event must be a miracle of God. There is, however, great room for neutral events which can be used either for good or for evil.
See how, instead of calling them natural events, they call them "neutral?" Like I said: someone find the irony switch on these people! Is it possible that they could ever fix that short in their system and realize that the "miracles" performed by "God" are also these "neutral events" and/or "positive deceptions?" (We call that "pious fraud.") I suppose they will--when Uri Geller admits he's using sleight-of-hand. Which will be never.
Thanks for listening, and thanks to Marek for the idea.
Download audio blog from rapidshare
Friday, March 17, 2006
I read an article today about a new immigration policy in The Netherlands. Part of the test requires immigrants to watch a film showing gay men kissing and bare-breasted women. The intent seems to be to educate immigrants that Dutch culture is liberal, and that they have to accept that to live in the country. It doesn't say you have to agree with those things--you just have to buy and watch the film.
So far, so good.
However, according to the article, not only is the Iranian version edited and censored, but Americans are exempt.
Do the Dutch have illusions about what Americans are like? Have they not heard about the national fury over the wardrobe malfunction of Janet Jackson? Do they know about the "War on Drugs" and the FCC with its bogus standards of decency? Have they never heard of Pat Robertson, TBN, or the Republican Party? Has the immigration minister ever heard of someone called George W Bush?
They might need to rethink their American exemption. Better think about the Canadian exemption too.
But I'll have to pas on this one. I know that fundamentalists are making life in Holland harder, but I don't think more government regulations will help much. After all, if the Netherlands didn't have a government, Muslims couldn't affect its policies, could they? Sorry, Sharia.
The Netherlands doesn't exist in a vacuum. That's like saying the state of Washington isn't affected by Oregon, Idaho, or California. But I can't blame them. The film reminds me of a travel brochure, more than immigration policy. Instead of advertising their tolerance for other religions, they should advertise what people really go to the Netherlands for: drugs, prostitution, windmills and Anne Frank. Get all of that on some posters, and you'll get the immigrants you really want, Holland.
Download from Rapidshare
Oh, and the whole St Patrick's Day thing. How did YOU contribute to being Irish, and are you really a Catholic? And what's so bad about snakes?
Thursday, March 16, 2006
From The Cushing Daily Citizen:
Lawmakers look to recognize Christianity
Critic: Religious declaration political ploy
By Sadie Gurman
THE JOPLIN GLOBE (JOPLIN, Mo.)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo.
A lawmaker who signed on to a resolution affirming Christianity as the state’s majority religion said he isn’t trying to turn Missouri into a theocracy, but he just wants Christians to feel free to publicly express their faith.
Rep. Barney Fisher, R-Richards, said the recently filed resolution was met with backlash from critics who, he said, have distorted the resolution’s intent.
“They feel minority rights have been threatened, which they haven’t,” Fisher said. “They feel we’re trying to create a state religion, which would be impossible to do. Some people feel threatened by this.”
The House resolution, recently approved by the House Rules Committee, champions prayer in schools and public venues, and recognizes a “Christian God.”
It states that the majority of Missourians are Christians, and that elected officials should “protect the majority’s right to express their religious beliefs while showing respect for those who object.”
It also calls upon the Legislature to “exercise the common sense that voluntary prayer in public schools and religious displays on public property are not a coalition of church and state.”
I would just like to applaud the courage of Missouri politicians like the brave Barney Fisher. Imagine. A politician, risking his job to stand up for Christianity, a threatened religion. He knows very well, according to his quote, that publicly expressing his faith is political suicide. Yet, there he stands, protecting the threatened majority by spending taxpayer dollars to affirm that Christianity is the majority religion in Missouri. I hope that the majority of citizens don't hold it against these patriots by not voting accordingly.
Thanks for listening.
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Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Today's podcast is the fabulous and entertaining Feast of Fools, with Fausto Fernos and Marc Felion. I would have to say that this is definitely a gay podcast--gay in a good way, of course--as they tend to have lots of drag queens and sexual innuendo--and Marc and Fausto are a couple. (A couple of...nuts. Ha ha.)
But it's not the drag queens and sex and pop-culture obsession that I find the most entertaining. It's Fausto's brilliant misinformation, and Marc's patient correction (most of the time). Fausto is clearly a very intelligent guy who reads--but doesn't check his facts. He's always presenting these brilliant theories on life, religion, psychology, you name it--but he always is missing some extremely pertinent fact that may or may not topple his entire theory. He takes a great idea up the side of a mountain, but his facts...just...don't...quite....get him there. I might have dismissed this whole podcast, but he's so refreshing and insightful, and I kind of miss all my gay friends back in Seattle who talked about sex so breezily, that I like listening.
Here's a madcap theory (maybe that's why I like Fausto) that I'd like to share. The way gay men talk about sex (in my experience) is with humour and charm, and this kind of feeling tends to be missing from conversations with straight men about sex. For one thing, they tend to not want to include a woman in the conversation. When they do, I find the humour has a rougher edge, devoid of the irony and social criticism I used to get with my gay friends. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Sure, there's darker themes in these "gay conversations." But it's the Marx Brothers to the straight guy's Three Stooges.
To put it simply: it's more fun--for me--to objectify men.
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Chef Isaac Hayes made a completely expected move when he announced he was leaving the show South Park. IN an interview with The Onion, he said
“There is a place in the world for satire, but there is a time when satire ends and intolerance and bigotry towards religious beliefs of others begins,” Hayes said. “As a civil rights activist of the past 40 years, I cannot support a show that disrespects those beliefs and practices.”
Apparently that time ends when South Park makes fun of his religion. The creators of South Park say that he had no problem poking fun of Christianity, such as South Park`s episode where a statue of Mary gushes menstrual blood, or when Cartmen sang sexual love-songs to Jesus, or when Mel Gibson is portrayed as a sado-masochistic Nazi. But after South Park satirizes Scientology, now Isaac Hayes has to make a stand for religion!
“But I understand what they’re doing. I told them to take a couple of Scientology courses, and understand what we do,”
Take a couple of courses, he says. That would be sweet. Imagine Trey and Matt at "Clay Table Processing," where they illustrate concepts in clay. That would be entertaining, indeed. But they can't do clay until they do the OT TR0s: sitting in a chair for hours, not moving or twitching. If you do, you have to start all over again. And pay again, presumably.
Of course, Isaac Hayes, as a celebrity Scientologist, is not privy to the same information any one of us laypeople can find on the internet or in the library. Looking at this information, the Church tells its adherents, is a serious infraction and can be very dangerous to your path towards Total Freedom. It's another way of saying "get out your checkbook." Because of this, it is very unlikely Chef knows about what his beloved L Ron Hubbard said about black people, that they were too unintelligent to register anything on the e-meter. Does he know about Hubbard's famous support for Apartheid in South Africa? His statement about uncivilized savages? Or what he said in a letter to his first wife, Polly?
You shouldn't be scrubbing the floor on your hands and knees. Get yourself a nigger; that's what they're born for.
So go ahead and stand up for what you believe, Chef. You're a hero, just like Hubbard, who posthumously received a NAACP Doctor W.E.B. Du Bois Outstanding Leadership Award a few years ago, thanks to you.
Thanks for listening.
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Monday, March 13, 2006
Sunday, March 12, 2006
I just listened to a recording put out by PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) by Father John Dear, explaining why Chritsians should be vegetarians. It goes like this:
In God's initial ideal world, represented in the book of Genesis by The Garden of Eden, there was no suffering, no exploitation, and no violence at all. People and animals were vegetarians. As we read in the first chapter of Genesis, God said, "See, I have given you every plant-yielding seed that is upon the face of the earth. and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food." Immediately after creating this non-violent, non-exploitative world, God describes it as very good. This is the only time in the narrative that God calls creation "very good.," instead of merely "good." And this immediately follows God's command for vegetarianism. But after the Fall, people waged war, held one another as slaves, ate meat, and committed every atrocity imaginable.
Not only did man become wicked when--or because--he ate meat, but something completely miraculous must have happened as well. The moment Eve bit into the fruit, animals became predators. Christians who believe in the literal Garden of Eden story should ask themselves this: was predation spontaneously created by the sin of Eve, or did God create it? Was it Eve or God that caused venom and fangs to spontaneously grow on snakes and venom immunity to spontaneously occur in some mammals? Did Eve's or God's actions spontaneously create microorganisms that feed solely on other microorganisms? Is man's sin so powerful as to create flesh-tearing teeth in the lion, that once laid with the lamb?
I have to ask: what does a vegetarian Lion look like? How could there have existed any such big cat? The very definition of big cats requires that they be carnivores. The large lung capacity and high haunches of the cheetah are there in order to run down prey. The powerful claws, teeth, and speed of the lion are there to chase, catch, and tear into antelopes, and fight other lions for their mates. It makes the image of a lion lying with a lamb not so remarkable, considering the lion would look pretty much the same as a lamb.
The answer, according to pro-meat christians is clear. God did it. Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis has said that God of course knew that man would fall, so he inserted a backup plan in the DNA of animals (so that's why we have DNA). All the venom and teeth necessary were in the genes of animals, including the T-Rexes and Velociraptors that roamed the garden, so that the animals could be the successful predators that they are today. In other words, God set evolution in motion on the day of the Fall. That gives 6,000 years to evolve lions and eagles and all the assorted scavengers. If only God had decided to let man evolve. If 6,000 years can make a tiger out of a goat, imagine what humans could be today!
Getting back to vegetarianism: if God decided to evolve efficient carnivores,and not change man at all, then He intended for us to become ruthless meat-eaters. If the church is telling us to humbly accept the curses God placed on Adam and Eve's descendents--curses such as hard labour and childbirth pain, then we should also humbly accept the the only decent curse God gave us: the curse of meat-eating. The curse of backyard barbecues and Hot-Wing nights at the corner pub.
Thanks for listening.
Saturday, March 11, 2006
From the AP:
Boston Catholic Charities Halts Adoptions
(AP) The Boston Archdiocese's Catholic Charities said Friday it would stop providing adoption services because of a state law allowing gays and lesbians to adopt children.
The social services arm of the Roman Catholic archdiocese, which has provided adoption services for the state for about two decades, said the law runs counter to church teachings on homosexuality.
"The world was very different when Charities began this ministry at the threshold of the twentieth-century," the Rev. J. Bryan Hehir, president of Catholic Charities, said in a joint statement with trustees chairman Jeffrey Kaneb. "The world changed often and we adapted the ministry to meet changing times and needs. At all times we sought to place the welfare of children at the heart of our work.
"But now, we have encountered a dilemma we cannot resolve," they said.
The children lose again. If they have to consider gay people, they won't help the children at all. Of course, this is terrible, stupid, and unjust, I have to wonder if kids being removed from the care of catholic nuns is such a terribel thing. If any organization modeled its childcare on biblical teachings, they should be shut down immediately.
I can understand why the Vatican doesn't want children raised in gay homes. Most of those gay families might be christians, and a lot of them are catholic, but they are pretty unlikely to raise a child in the christian way they want. Christian organizations want quiet, passive, sex-fearing congregants who hate gays and love Our Lady. To make such a congregant, the child must be raised with strict, ritualistic corporal punishment with an emphasis on sexual shame. Spankings should be an event involving nudity and humiliation, a good way to make a shamed adult with plenty of sins to confess. If the dad isn't doing it, there's sure to be clergy that can help. But clergy can't do it if you haven't made a catholic out of the kid.
I just don't think well-adjusted, out-of-the-closet gay families are any good at passing on sexual shame to their kids.
But lets all hope the orphans are freed from the state workers hands as soon as possible, and into the hands of a nice, moral, secular home where they will screw up the kid a lot less.
Thanks for listening.
Friday, March 10, 2006
It looks like I've been living in a different world than everyone else.
I've been playing podcasts about libertarian and market anarchy issues on my station,, and the last few days, the podcasts were about feminism, and how it has duped the modern woman into thiking she can "have it all, and that she doesn't need men.
Now, I respect the hell out of Stephan Molyneux, of Freedomain Radio, "The logic of personal and political liberty," and I have to admit I was not able to listen to the entirety of his 4 podcasts about this, and I haven't even discussed it with him. But this blog is all about writing what has been bothering me, so off I go.
I don't know what he's talking about. Women entering the workforce in the seventies? Women being fooled into thinking they can have it all by "feminism?" Who is this feminism person, and why did she lie to me? And how come I can't find any women in my family tree who weren't part of the workforce? Bothmy grandmothers worked outside of the home, and once you get beyond that, they worked their tails off plowing and pitching hay. And, where were the women in my life who knew nothing about their own reproductive systems and weren't aware that babymaking time is prime when you're still young and stupid? What planet do I live on?
If you heard my last entry, you may have noted that the pastor of my church said women should "never go to college, because that would make them think, and we don't want women who think." My mother was discovering 2nd-wave feminism in those years. I wish she had made a tougher stand against our pastor, but it seems the social pressures were too much for her. In 1979, my family needed a new car. They wanted in to be my mom's car, but the dealership did not allow her to be the name on the title. Of course, everything had to be in my father's name. Just thinking the thought that this was unjust made a person a "women's libber" back then.
I never read the literature. I never took women's studies. But this is what that imaginary "feminism monster" taught me: that I could make independent choices. I could take birth control. I could be in charge of my own sex life. Silly things, like I could go to a restaurant alone, or play the electric guitar. But the important fact is that if you don't want your greatest achievement to be making babies, you don't have to. If you want to do the family thing, you can do that to, but most importantly, if you want to be a bachelor, you have every right to be one, and it doesn't make you a terrible, low-quality person. Fact is, having a baby because you're "not getting any younger" seems like a pretty stupid reason to me. I'm glad more women are waiting until they are older. Science is adapting, and people are adapting. More people are deciding not to have children at all, and if you've been to a warehouse store lately, you'd be thankful. How many babies do we really need to be having right now? Please don't think it's your duty to poop puppies because the smarter people are opting out and dumber people are populating the earth. We're talking about a human being here, people, not a cause.
I think my problem is that I am allergic to people talking about "finding quality men while there's still time." This was not much of an issue for me. I was a bachelor until I was 37 years old. I never wanted children. I married a man 11 years younger than me. (And no, I was not an "eagle," lying in wait to entrap a younger man to harvest his sperm. Where do people come up with these things?) Anyway, we might have never officially married had it not been for the border issues. I am still waiting to find out what my greatest achievement is. But regardless of what everyone else is apparently doing, according to what I'm hearing, roles are for plays, and I'm not playing. I have a feeling there are more of us in the audience than people think
And that's no lie.
Thanks for listening.
Thursday, March 09, 2006
I talked to my mother on the phone for an hour the other day. She's a really intelligent woman, and we always have a good time talking. For some reason, we seem to end up talking about Christianity a lot. Lately, thoguh, I have taken these opportunities to find out some things about my childhood, to put the pieces back together, as I think sometimes I can't trust my own memories. Sometimes I hesitate to ask, because I'm not sure I'm ready to process information like she gave me the other day.
"I stopped going to the Mother's Day sermons," she told me, when I was asking about some incidents in the seventies. "He would say that women shouldn't be allowed to go to college, because then they would think, and we can't have women who think."
This is strange to me, because they left that church a few years later because the minister who replaced him was "too conservative." How much more conservative can you get than this man, a friend of my family. We used to go to their house a lot and have dinner. My brother was friends with his son, I'll call "Greg." I remember my brother, greg, and his other friend Joey playing vibration football on the floor. You know, the seventies equivalent of an electronic game.
"He got his later, though," my mom said.
"What do you mean?" I said.
"His son committed suicide. He was gay, and they never accepted it. Then his wife went out and got a job."
"Which was worse?" I heard myself saying. I thought about the afternoons in their house, with the aqua blue shag carpeting, and the pastor's wife, her elegant 60's clothes and hair. I tried to remember Greg. I don't remember what he looked like. I can only hear my brother saying his name, the way he always said his first and last name together. There were a lot of Gregs back then.
"Why did you stay there, in that church, for all those years?" I asked.
"Because we had friends, and because you dad was directing the choir" she said. I think there's more to it than that. I want there to be more to it than that. To make my brother and me stay there in that church and that school. I wanted to say something about how that church affected me and my brother, but I remembered we already had that conversation. About how it affected our friends, who were children of the friends she was referring to. About how they were so bitter, she said, that they would never darken the door of a church again. I had tried to explain that there was more to it than that, but I couldn't bring myself to go into it. We had talked for an hour already. Besides, I thought, my mom was reading a Humanist magazine. She's smart enough to figure those things out herself.
Thanks for listening, diary.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
A recent CNN online article reports that Dominoes Pizza founderm Thomas S. Monaghan, wants to build a Roman Catholic community to be called "Ave Maria," around the Catholic Universtity of the same name. With "God's Will" and $250 million, the community would allow no abortions, no pornography, no birth control and no free, independant, normal adult life.
Of course, civil libertarians are making the right call that this is unconstitutional. Asinine is what I'd call it. Not that people shouldn't be able to live lives free of joy. The biggest problem I have is that it will never work. Marias they want? Marias they will get. Experience has shown that repressive, religious communities are not only great at producing guilt, they are even better at producing sin.
There's a little part of me that wants this Catholic Disneyland City of Tomorrow to come true, because Las Vegas would have nothing on Ave Maria. This little town could be much better than Garden Grove from Dangerous Housewives. Pregnant teenaged girls. Gay teen suicides. Furtive, shameful gay sexual liasons in parks, stds, a great big black market in birth control, porn, sex toys and worst of all, do-it-yourself abortions.
I know--slippery slope naysaying. But this kind of thing, a little town that forbids these wicked sins, is not new. Remember the middle ages? The Puritans of old and the Amish of today don't have such a great track record in abstinence-only "education" and rates of teen pregnancy. In the closet gay persons tend to engage in riskier behaviors in repressive communities. When gay people were coerced into heterosexual marriages, of course they become adulterous "sinners." Will adults stop having sex, and will adult women stop trying to avoid having litters of children? Ask Catholic priests.
The upside of all this is that pornography and sex toys will increase in value. That's good for business, and it makes the stuff much sexier. But just as prohibition and the drug wars did nothing but create criminals, these prohibitions will create a lot of sinners. This community had better raise enough money to build a great, big Ave Maria jail. It had better have a nursery.
Thanks for listening.