27 March 2010

Link roundup for 27 March 2010

Reconstitution 2.0 discovers the quintessential teabagger.

HCR fails to meet a crucial need.

"Minor" surgery leads to fart horror.

Jack Jodell wants to understand the Republicans.

Don't mess with Texas? Looks like someone already did.

It's just a book!

Why are atheists concerned about non-existent gods?

A marijuana-legalization initiative will be on this November's ballot in California.

Octopüß looks at the rage on the right.

Gallup shows more Americans reacting favorably than unfavora-bly to the passage of HCR (found via Progressive Eruptions); more here. Polls on voting intentions are looking good, for now.

Holte Ender looks at how Social Security was enacted as a limited reform and then improved, as we hope will happen with HCR.

Maureen Dowd weighs in on Stupak and the Catholic Church (sent by DemWit).

The Crossed Pond argues that Republican obstructionism will fail as an election strategy. Tony Coelho says that bold Democrats can turn it against them.

Bruce Bartlett comments on AEI's firing of David Frum for airing his dissenting views. Frum speaks out.

An Orange county pastor calls for prayers for the deaths of all the Congressional Democrats who voted for HCR (sent by Mendip).

ZJ looks at another silly flap over disrespect for holy crackers.

In response to the endless child-molestation scandals, the Vatican has denounced.....the media (found via Oliver Willis). Oh, and of course secularism too.

Before he became Pope, Ratzinger was involved in protecting a priest who had molested 200 boys at a school for the deaf (found via Reconstitution 2.0). The protection was from a Church "trial" and defrocking; the proper course, calling the police, does not seem to even have been considered.

The Pope's feeble "apology" letter on child molestation in Ireland falls flat with the Irish (found via Oliver Willis).

Religious charlatanry, and skeptical challenges to it, are not confined to the West. Here's a great story from India.

Good news: a secular coalition has won the Iraqi election, though narrowly. "The results.....suggest that millions of Iraqis are fed up with a political system that revolves around membership in one of the two major Islamic sects. Iraqiya's win also shows that many Iraqis are suspicious of Iranian influence."

Green Eagle looks at Israeli "settlements" around Jerusalem.

Global warming has resolved a territorial dispute.

Sam Harris talks about how science can address moral questions (very interesting).

The basics of biology may be simpler than we think.


Blogger mendip said...

Wonderful selection - thanks! That one on Texas explains a lot of their actions, doesn't it?

27 March, 2010 04:56  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Thanks! That map does suggest areas for further inquiry -- does whatever part of RoVa spawned Mr. Cuccinelli get some sort of toxic run-off from mines in West Virginia, for example?

27 March, 2010 05:15  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

Lone Star Greeting's Mr.Infidel!

A few here that I wanted to comment on ....

Two from Ragebot caught my attencion .... On the piece about HCR, on coverage of legal fee's for cancer ward divorce's. You know .... I am sure as huge as this book/ bill is (2700 pg's or so?)and as many who have put their paw's into it, including this so called new "fix it" thing done the other day .... that it has enough shit in it as far as loophole's and special .... let's say "need's", to beat a goddamn murder case in the court of law. :)I havent read it yet (and dread thinking of) but am sure I could find all kind's of "goodies" in it. We'll find out soon enough what it all consist's of ... you can bet on that ... and I even expect some caca(shit) to hit the fan as well. :)

The other Ragebot piece that interested me was about the mercury contamination in Texas, I am going to take it as truth, until I find out otherwise, simply because I know damn well there is some bad shit going on here enviromentally .... as I posted in that last posting about Texas I done, and calling it an "enviromental nightmare" .... and I was basing none of that on any news over mercury .... and mostly based on my own first hand experience .... imagine that! I worked for a suburban print/graphic art's place year's back as a foreman in pre-press, the owner (originally from Mississippi) was also a republican local politician ... I done also all the campaign ad's locally for GOP candidate's back then. But I noticed they were dumping very toxic chemical's into the drain's at the shop .... and printer's use some deadly one's too. So I went to talk to the owner about it in his office with his partner, they stood looking at me in shock .... and simply said ..."Hell Thomas .... we been doin this for year's ... we have PVC plumbing, not copper (refering to how the fixer acidic's dont eat at PVC, as if I was warning them for their piping ....geeeez) I told them ..."Do ya'll enjoy those weekend's on the lake with ya'll's kid's fishing? Are ya'll concerned about the water ya'll's familia's are drinking .... I could go on and on fella's .... get my drift?" Well .... although they werent pleased with me jumping in like that to say the least .... they did change out the system's and way they dispose of these chemical's .... and I even showed them how they also can make some money as well off of going a lil more green/ enviromental .... How? because the fixer waste has silver in it extracted from the developement process ( duuuuuhhh ... they were throwing it away all along ).... that "silver recovery" is a handsome piece of change after a few month's as well, they changed their attitude then. :)

BBC News on the disappearing of land in the "Bay of Bengal" should be of no suprise to anyone, expect more to come! :(

Science Daily was a nice piece as well as far as the complexities of biology .... I never thought the natural order of thing's were complex anywayz .... as much as I feel our thinking and brain's are what is complex.

Weather here a lil chilly in the morning/ night's, but sunny today and about 70 for a high ... fixin to open the sun roof and cruise up to Oklahoma in a bit (work).... and enjoy some "fresh air" and sunshine this afternoon, hopefully!

Later Guy .........

27 March, 2010 06:55  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

One thing to remember about the mercury article is that those are absolute numbers, not adjusted for population size or area. Texas is bigger in both population and area than most states, so the high level of mercury contamination isn't as much higher per person or per square mile as the raw numbers would suggest. It's still obvious there's a real problem, though. The dismissive attitude toward laws and regulations, which you've sometimes described, would naturally tend to leave the state vulnerable to such dangers.

Have a good trip to Oklahoma.....

27 March, 2010 07:20  
Blogger godlizard (aka dotlizard) said...

Thanks once again for including me in this awesome roundup of links.

I loved the Maureen Dowd piece about the nuns -- the ones who actually care for the sick and know more than a little about healthcare. I hadn't even thought of that, but it's so true -- the Catholic patriarchy is a mess, but the nuns are still out there doing the actual helping.

The overall tone of things is so dire, these days. Whenever I think this, I ask myself, am I just forgetting how bad things were in the past, and erroneously considering the present to be worse / more intense? But honestly, the answer is no, it is different now, it is worse. It is more intense.

Thanks for doing what you do with the blogging. You're a force for rational thought, humanism, and political accountability, and I appreciate your efforts.

28 March, 2010 00:16  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

GL: Thanks much for the kind words. I do like to think that in my small way, I'm helping to make the world a little more rational and humane and faithless:-)

It's striking that those nuns could just as easily be doing what they're doing with no religious involvement -- there are secular charities, and people who are good as nuns would probably have been good people anyway -- but the bishops' power and prestige depends entirely on the religious connection.

The overall tone of things is so dire, these days.

Actually I think this is exactly right. Things are much less dire than in the past, but the tone is more so. People live longer and healthier lives than ever before, the threat of a fundamentalist take-over of American society has receded, the economy is recovering, the grown-ups are (as of January 2009) back in charge in Washington and are gradually putting the economy, the government's relationship with science, and our overseas military operations back on a rational basis. Yet apocalyptic hysteria has become a widely-heard "tone". I think that arises mostly from a fundamentalist far right which is realizing it has lost the culture war and is retreating into extremism and a circle-the-wagons bitter-end state of mind. There's a little of it, too, from those on the unrealistic left who thought Obama would just wave a wand and transform America into exactly what they wanted, and are now calling him a corporate sell-out because he hasn't.

But as I said before, the overall direction is clear. Religion is crumbling and conservatism is in retreat. The rage and threats and violence we're seeing now are their death-throes. The future belongs to us.

28 March, 2010 05:49  
Anonymous Kvatch said...

Hey Infidel...thanks for linking my 'Don't Mess With Texas" post! Always appreciated.

01 April, 2010 15:56  

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