Apr 21 2014

“We fed 3000 of his fellow citizens last year”

The manager of the scammed food bank comments:

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Apr 21 2014

Long story short

Of course there’s also satire.

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Apr 21 2014

The great British public to the Mail on Sunday: Bite me

The good news is, the loathsome Mail on Sunday hit piece motivated a lot of people to give money to the charitable trust that funds many UK food banks. Yaboosucks Daily Mail!

The largest provider of food banks in Britain has seen a huge surge in donations after a newspaper article criticising the charity sparked a social media funding drive.

The Trussell Trust says it is “overwhelmed by the public’s generosity” as a new appeal has now topped £38,000, a rise of well over £35,000 since before the article was published. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 21 2014

Staff at Nottingham’s Citizens’ Advice Bureau

About that Daily Mail on Sunday story that was all over the place yesterday -

Photo: So this happened today in the Mail on Sunday.  Among the absurdities, it states quite clearly they asked him loads of questions, despite the headline!

Yes, what about it? Just, how horrible it is; how perfectly hateful it is.

What the hell is that even for? To demonstrate that someone who goes to considerable trouble to ask for help eventually gets help to the tune of a few bags of food items? Why is that supposed to be a bad thing?

Why do so many people make a point of being so hateful?

Apr 20 2014

Dozens of public figures

From a comment -

What horrible bullying garbage that is. It’s not a “Christian country”; that’s not a meaningful description, and if it were, the UK still wouldn’t fit it.

Yes, it is.


(Scroll down for Anglican.)

Heads of state government shouldn’t make untrue and coercive statements like that; it others most of the population.

What on earth are you talking about? (Also applies to the “bullying” stuff above?)

I’m not the only one. The Telegraph reports that “Dozens of public figures accuse David Cameron of fostering alienation and division with call to view Britain as a Christian country.”

David Cameron is sowing sectarianism and division by insisting that Britain is still a “Christian country” an alliance of writers, scientists, philophers and politicians has claimed. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 20 2014

Our status as a Christian country

David Cameron threw a little Easter party the other day. He stood on a box and addressed a bunch of people who stood facing him with their hands folded tidily in front of them like subdued schoolchildren, and what he said was, there should be more of this kind of thing all around.

LAST week I held my fourth annual Easter reception in Downing Street. Not for the first time, my comments about my faith and the importance of Christianity in our country were widely reported.

Some people feel that in this ever more secular age we shouldn’t talk about these things. I completely disagree. I believe we should be more confident about our status as a Christian country, more ambitious about expanding the role of faith-based organisations, and, frankly, more evangelical about a faith that compels us to get out there and make a difference to people’s lives. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 20 2014

Innately not interesting

Here’s someone I’ve never read – the historical novelist Philippa Gregory. She has a history PhD but got it just in time for Thatcher’s cuts to university courses, when jobs teaching 18th century history became scarce. She wrote a novel for the fun of it and whoops it was a best-seller so the university job was no longer required.

Her nose for a good story continued to serve her well, however; when Gregory “discovered” Mary Boleyn, she had been all but forgotten.

“There wasn’t a single book or essay about her. She was in the footnotes of other, allegedly more interesting, lives and only very occasionally at that. It took an exjourno and a woman historian to spot that actually she was rather extraordinary.” Read the rest of this entry »

Apr 20 2014

Blood on the tracks behind him

This is very cool. A panel discussion in 2009, with Dawkins, Tyson, Druyan, and Stenger, moderated by Grothe. At the Q and A there’s a question about genetic differences between women and men and their representation in science. Tyson takes it, and makes the point that we keep keep keep making. Druyan, on his left, is enthusiastic. Dawkins, on his right…maybe not so much.

That part starts at one hour one minute fourteen seconds.

Apr 20 2014

Humanism at Work, July 18-20

Heyup, there’s a new conference on the horizon. Here are details via Ed Brayton:

Foundation Beyond Belief, the nation’s largest humanist charitable organization, is holding its first national conference, “Humanism at Work,” July 18-20, 2014 at the Hilton Rosemont in Chicago, Illinois.

This conference, the first of its kind in the freethought community, centers on how nontheists can put their compassionate humanism to work for a better world. It will include TED-style presentations on philanthropy, volunteering, and community building, as well as practical workshops, panels, and hands-on volunteer opportunities.

Speakers include:

  • Evidence-based giving expert CAROLINE FIENNES
  • Nigerian humanist and human rights activist LEO IGWE
  • Atheist homelessness activist SERAH BLAIN
  • HEMLEY GONZALEZ, a humanist at work with the poor in Calcutta
  • Atheist authors HEMANT MEHTA and GRETA CHRISTINA
  • Social psychologist DR. BRITTANY SHOOTS-REINHARD
  • THE PATHFINDERS, three humanists just returned from a year of global service


To register, go to the Humanism at Work website. We’ve worked hard to keep the conference affordable at $129 before April 15 and $149 after that date. Included in that price is a formal dinner at which we will give away the Heart of Humanism awards to those who have put humanism into action in their local communities and around the world.

Apr 20 2014

The plane passengers banded together

Passengers on a plane in Sweden went on seat belt strike and saved a refugee from deportation to Iran.

Last week, an Iranian man reluctantly boarded a plane in Sweden. The refugee was being forced to return to his native country, where his life would likely be in danger, even though he had a wife — a Swedish resident — and two young children in Östersund. Read the rest of this entry »

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