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Monthly Archive: September 2011

Sep 20 2011

Surprising showing by Warren

Initial polls show Elizabeth Warren has jumped to a small 46-44 lead over incumbent senator Scott Brown, and that Brown’s approval numbers are declining.

Sep 20 2011

The Tea Party mentality

The Plain Dealer had a story on the front page yesterday that summed up perfectly the attitude of the Republican party. The concrete sound barriers erected along the highways to shield nearby residents from noise were crumbling long before the advertised 20-year life expectancy was reached, presumably because inferior concrete had been used. Repairing them …

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Sep 20 2011

The biological basis for justice and altruism-part 2

(An expanded version of a talk given at CWRU’s Share the Vision program, Severance Hall, Friday, August 26, 2011 1:00 pm. This program is to welcome all incoming first year students. My comments centered on the ideas in the common reading book selection Justice: What’s the right thing to do? by Michael Sandel. See part …

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Sep 19 2011

Public opinion on civil liberties and security

Glenn Greenwald points out that the popular claim by politicians and media figures that the public is willing to sacrifice civil liberties in return for security is in fact not supported by opinion polls.

Sep 19 2011

The inexplicable popularity of awards shows

I see from the news today that yesterday was the Emmy awards show. I do not understand the appeal of such shows for viewers and am curious as to why people watch them at all. Surely it can’t be to see the stars since we see them all the time in their performances themselves. The …

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Sep 19 2011

Voting for gay or atheist for president

Gallup released the results of a poll recently that said that the percentage of people who said that they would vote for a well-qualified homosexual candidate for president is 67% while the number who would vote for a well-qualified atheist was 49%. The number who would not vote for such people was 32% and 49% …

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Sep 19 2011

The biological basis for justice and altruism-part 1

(An expanded version of a talk given at CWRU’s Share the Vision program, Severance Hall, Friday, August 26, 2011 1:00 pm. This program is to welcome all incoming first year students. My comments centered on the ideas in the common reading book selection Justice: What’s the right thing to do? by Michael Sandel.) This year’s …

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Sep 18 2011

Disco scene from Airplane!

I just watched this film for the umpteenth time.

Sep 18 2011

More on the problem of original sin

Stephen Colbert discusses the profound problems created for Christianity and its fundamental doctrine of original sin if the Adam and Eve story is not literally true. The Colbert ReportGet More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,Political Humor & Satire Blog,Video Archive Jason Rosenhouse examines in some detail the attempts by Christian apologists to deal with these difficulties. …

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Sep 18 2011

A prime example of Villager idiocy

The dream world of Villager punditry is truly something to behold. Take William Cohan who has a suggestion in the Washington Post for Elizabeth Warren, who has just declared her candidacy to run for the US Senate seat in Massachusetts currently held by Republican Scott Brown. Seven weeks removed from the political reality that cost …

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