Who watched the Academy Awards? Who cared?

I saw Birdman a while back. I didn’t actually like it very much, but I respected it — it’s a movie about actors acting about acting, and they acted the hell out of it. I was totally unsurprised that it won a bunch of Oscars last night, because the people voting on it were all in the acting business, and rightly enough, they all voted for the well-acted movie that was about them.

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Willie Soon is going down

And it’s about time. Soon is a dishonest hack, one of the climate change deniers who exploited his prestigiously titled position as a researcher at the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics (Oooh! Sciencey!) to claim authority in attacks on more credible climate scientists, and he’s been very popular on the denialist side of things.

Now his own boss is admitting that he violated disclosure principles by failing to reveal his industry connections. You might be wondering what connections, and how much did he get?

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A fabulous smackdown of O’Reilly

Brian Williams got smacked around hard for his confabulation of events, in which he placed himself in a helicopter that was shot at by insurgents (he wasn’t — it was a different helicopter in a group he was flying with). But he at least acknowledged that he was wrong.

Now Bill O’Reilly has been caught in a similar exaggeration. Do you think he backed down? Oh hell no..

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Speaking of Catholicism…

Here’s a Catholic priest writing about the problems of Catholicism.

Everywhere from Boston to Minneapolis, Catholic churches have closed or been consolidated into regional clusters. The chief reason is declining Mass attendance.

In New York, Mass attendance has fallen to European levels, around 15 percent on an average Sunday, according to The New York Times. In Boston, it is even lower, around 12 percent.

Nationwide, only 24 percent of Catholics go to Mass on an average Sunday, down from 55 percent in 1965.

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