Hire Alex Gabriel or Donate

Alex, my friend and colleague, is in financial crisis. If you need a designer or a text editor, make sure to hire him, he’s fantastic. He edited something for me and I really appreciated his work. He has quoted me in his article dealing with this. Here’s what I had to say:

I have come into contact with hundreds of editors in my life, so when I say Alex is a fantastic editor I do not speak with a lack of experience. He is fast and he is thorough, he thinks about every word and its implication, he understands and respects your world and your voice, and his insight is frank.

You can read here about how you can help.

Obama Is Right to Be Wrong about IS

President Obama made a speech about the terrorist group IS and laid out his strategy about how to gradually “degrade and destroy” IS. Overall I think it was the best one could do in the current situation, and I believe objections to it would come from reality-divorced ideologues from the right (who want more war at any cost and do not consider how being erratic in war against IS could spiral into a disaster) and left (whose opposition to military intervention is an article of faith and have no problem with genocides and rapes if not committed by a western government), as it seems to be prudent, careful, and based on a coalition with the globe, as evident by John Kerry’s travel to Arab countries to gain their support, and would involve Europe as well. You can read a summary of his plan here. Does that mean Obama can prevent a disaster? Who knows? I don’t think it’s unlikely that in spite of Obama’s tactful and rational strategy, all would still fail. It’s a very tricky subject.

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Book Review: On the Historicity of Jesus: Why We Might Have Reason for Doubt

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I’m not someone who’s well-versed in this era of history. I know that the near-consensus of experts is on the other side of the debate, and I know I’m not equipped to judge the merit of this book in a useful way. So this review can only reveal the viewpoint of a layperson who also looks at the things he reads critically and knows it when he sees a good point. And this is a good book.

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Liberty Interviews Episode 3: Jonathan MS Pearce

This is the third episode of hopefully many weekly interviews I plan to conduct on the subject of liberty from people with varying standpoints and views. Check out the previous episodes here.

As an author, Jonathan MS Pearce writes about the subjects which fascinate him hugely. His first book “Free Will?” is a work dedicated to investigating free will and determinism, presenting a wealth of evidence to support a deterministic worldview. His second book “The Little Book of Unholy Questions” is a cumulative case against the existence of God written in the form of a set of questions asked directly to God. His last book “The Nativity: A Critical Examination” is a synthesis of the work detailing the analysis of the infancy narratives in the New Testament, showing that the two Gospel accounts are clearly a-historical. Check his blog at A Tippling Philosopher.

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Loose Muslims Vs. Moderate Muslims

I have come across a sentiment, both from Iranians and non-Iranians, and today I suddenly realized it’s demonstrably false. Usually westerners (and some Iranians) say “Yes, I know a lot of Iranians who are completely different from the regime, they drink alcohol, have sex, etc, they’re very moderate!” And I think that’s false.

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New Rule Added to the Comment Policy: No Off-Topic Comments

I didn’t want to enact a rule concerning the topicality, but since there are inconsiderate commenters who keep on hijacking the comment thread and show no remorse for littering the blog with their irrelevant musings, and have indicated that they will go on polluting the comment section, you will not be able to post off-topic comments from now on.

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