Apr 18 2014

Oh dang, that was recorded?

The newly elected mayor of Latta, South Carolina, just fired the town’s first female police chief because she is openly gay. She’s been a cop there for more than 20 years, with an exemplary record.

Bullard was recorded by a city council member making several unsavory statements about Moore and other town employee.

According to a local news report (which obtained the audio), Bullard said:

“I would much rather have.. and I will say this to anybody’s face… somebody who drank and drank too much taking care of my child than I had somebody whose lifestyle is questionable around children. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 18 2014

Whose job

PZ also marvels at this idea that internet bullying doesn’t count. (PZ is at the AA Convention; I wonder if he’s dropped in on the art show yet.)

He starts with the suicide of Amanda Todd and the arrest of the guy who harassed and extorted her.

I pointed out back then that some members of the atheist community have a vile lack of empathy. I will mention it again. Miri rages against the online idiots who insist that internet activity can’t really do psychological harm — they diagnose freely over the internet, and claim that you can’t possibly develop stress disorders from the bullying tactics of the usual slymey suspects — Miri tears that argument up with basic scientific facts from the field of psychology (remember the days when skeptics at least paid lip service to science?) Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 18 2014

Life among the quiverfull

Amanda Marcotte looks at some of the laughably typical scandals plaguing the reactionary-Christian movement.

There’s the resignation of Doug Phillips, and even better, there’s what is revealed in the lawsuit filed by the woman he’d been “inappropriately” “romantic and affectionate” with.

While the complaint never mentions sexual intercourse, it does claim that he repeatedly groped and masturbated on her while she protested. The plaintiff alleges she was basically moved into Phillips’ house with his wife and children, taken on many family vacations, and given work as a caretaker for the family, all while secretly being bullied into sexual encounters without consent. She even claims that Phillips told her that they would marry soon, as he believed that his wife was about to die.

Torres-Manteufel’s lawyer provided me with a copy of the complaint. It is searing in its criticisms of Doug Phillips. “Phillips’s patriarchal movement teaches that men are, and should be, in the absolute control of women,” reads the complaint, claiming that Torres-Manteufel was therefore bullied into believing she had no choice but to submit to Phillips’ alleged sexual abuse, even though she feared it made her “damaged goods.” Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 18 2014

Tyson and Tits

I was hoping AA just hadn’t seen those painting, but no, that’s not the case. They tweeted one of them yesterday.

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Apr 18 2014

Why don’t the bullied people just hide?

Another psychologist explains PTSD. Caleb Lack asks Can one get PTSD via Twitter? and answers yes, easily.

I don’t really keep up much with drama and goings-on in the skeptoatheist online world. I’ve got friends who do, though, and they pointed me to a recent post with the in no way linkbaitesque title of:

Woman claims she has PTSD from Twitter and Cyberstalking

Twitter gave me PTSD’: Woman claims mean comments and ‘cyberstalking’ gave her an illness usually suffered by WAR VETERANS

I was asked by this friend, basically, “Can one get post traumatic stress disorder from Twitter?”

In a word: Yes.

That second link isn’t to a post at all, it’s to an article…in the Daily Mail. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 18 2014

Welcome to oligarchy

The BBC reports on an academic study that finds the US is an oligarchy rather than a democracy. I knew that, but it’s interesting to have a study.

the two professors have conducted exhaustive research to try to present data-driven support for this conclusion. Here’s how they explain it:

Multivariate analysis indicates that economic elites and organised groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on US government policy, while average citizens and mass-based interest groups have little or no independent influence. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 18 2014

The count

The BBC is still reporting on the kidnapped schoolgirls in Nigeria. Their reporter there, Will Ross, says the government is saying 99 girls are missing but parents are saying it’s 150 to 200.

The attack on the school in Chibok, a remote part of Borno state, happened late on Monday with gunmen reportedly storming the school, stealing food supplies and ordering the students onto lorries. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 18 2014

The missing 200+

Richard Attias at the Huffington Post points out the lack of coverage of the kidnapping of more than 100 schoolgirls in Borno, Nigeria.

The Western media has made barely a mention of this story and appears resigned to ignore this abduction, which is an act of terror and unprecedented barbarism against these students whose only crime was to go to school.

That’s actually not true. It may be true of US media, but it’s not true of for instance the BBC World Service – it was the top story on Wednesday and it got a lot of minutes. He probably had no idea how much coverage there was in French, German, Swedish, Spanish etc etc media. Be careful  not to say “Western” when you mean “US.”

But anyway, if the US media are ignoring it, that stinks.

The World Service said yesterday that Nigeria had had to adjust the number way upward – they were now saying it was over 200 girls.

It’s awful.

Apr 18 2014

See this door?

For refreshment after that – the new xkcd.

Free Speech

Apr 18 2014

“It’s more of a guy thing” in paintings


Two more, for the total of three, at the Art Show and Silent Auction at the American Atheists’ Convention in Salt Lake City.

I’m told this one is hanging just below one of Neil DeGrasse Tyson.

This one is sculptural; the hand is part of it. Read the rest of this entry »

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