Monthly Archives: September 2016
I have great genes and all that stuff, which I’m a believer in
All men are created equal – that’s not true. When you connect two race horses, you usually end up with a fast horse. Secretariat doesn’t produce slow horses. I have a certain gene. I’m a gene believer. Do you believe in the gene thing? I mean I do. I have great genes and all that stuff, which I’m a believer in.
I have like a very very high aptitude
I don’t think this man wants you or your friends to see this: absentee voting in US election is easy now, even for expats. My own absentee ballot just arrived by email. I can return it on line as well. I needed social security number, and address of last US voter registration: details at https://register.avaaz.org/vote/VoterInformation.htm
Spread the word
Part 1 of this series, “Atoms Old and New: Atoms in Antiquity” can be read here.
The transition to modern thinking
“It seems probable to me, that God in the beginning formed matter in solid, massy, hard, impenetrable, movable particles… even so very hard, as never to wear or break in pieces; no ordinary power being able to divide what God Himself made one in the first creation.” So wrote Sir Isaac Newton in his 1704 work, Opticks. Apart from the reference to God, there is nothing here that Democritus would have disagreed with. There is, however, very little that the present-day scientist would fully accept. In this and later posts, I discuss how atoms reemerged as fundamental particles, only to be exposed, in their turn, as less than fundamental.
The scientific revolution and the revival of corpuscular theory – 1543–1687
One US political party, from its Presidential candiate on down, is dedicated to the denial of global warming and the headlong exploitation of fossil fuels. For me, this issue eclipses all others.
I therefore urge you: if you think that global warming is not a problem, and that fossil fuels should be exploited as fully and as quickly as possible, vote Republican.
If you think otherwse, vote Democrat.
But vote. Here’s the link. The form will take no longer to fill out than it took you to read this: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/globalvote_ph/?aAcyEab
Church Appointees on Scotland’s Education Committees (as of Summer 2015)
We are in the course of updating this information to Spring 2017. We have confirmation from all Councils who have responded to date that the Church representatives do have the right to vote in the Education Committees that they sit on.
We give here the names, Church affiliations, and appointments procedure, of the Church Appointees on all of Scotland’s Council Education Committees, as determined by Freedom of Information requests during Summer 2015. Church of Scotland and Catholic appointees are appointed by their Church hierarchies and Councils have no chioce in the matter. Procedures vary by Council for selecting the Church allowed to nominate the third appointee.
Notes on appointment procedures:
(a) Church was sole applicant in response to advertisement (8 Councils)
(b) Position vacant, pending reply from nominating Church (2 Councils)
(c) No replies to advertisement. Sitting member agreed to continue in place (1 Council) Read the rest of this entry
No one is going to learn anything from anybody if one side lays down rules about what the other side is allowed to say, before the discussion even starts
I’m an atheist, and I’m feeling insulted
Insulted by Greta Christina’s article, “9 Answers to Common Questions for Atheists – So You Don’t Insult Us By Asking”, http://everydayfeminism.com/2016/08/questions-atheists-find-insulting/. Insulted by the condescending and preachy answers offered on my behalf. Insulted that the author presumes to speak on my behalf at all, as if she were the privileged custodian of some kind of atheist credo. But above all, insulted by the suggestion that I am so intellectually fragile as to find the questions insulting.
For an atheist – correction, for me as an atheist, since I have no mandate to speak for others – it is a matter of deep principle that all questions and (unless there is reason to do otherwise) all questioners should be treated with respect. This is one of the ways in which, as I see it, atheism is morally superior to many kinds of religion, in which even asking certain questions is regarded as sinful, or even blasphemous.
Why am I discussing this?
Grandmother Fish will be released in the US on September 6, and in the UK on October 13, by Feiwell and friends. That’s a division of Macmillan, like the Nature group who now also publish Scientific American. Good company, well deserved (full review here).
And more to come from the same author-illustrator team; Clades, an animal-matching game with rules based on the underlying science. Read the rest of this entry