Carnivalia and an open thread

Cruise the web starting with these most excellent entry points.

Now tell me something I don’t already know.


  1. says

    If there is a God, I pray to Thee that Thou shall correct my embarrassing mistype of “their” and “there” by smiting Thine Mighty Hand into the Seed severs and cleaving the electrons holding this mistake in twain.


  2. David Marjanović, OM says

    and cleaving the electrons holding this mistake in twain.

    Now that would be a miracle.

  3. David Marjanović, OM says

    and cleaving the electrons holding this mistake in twain.

    Now that would be a miracle.

  4. Pyre says

    “Now tell me something I don’t already know.”

    My favorite flavor of ice cream or pie is blueberry.

    My cat’s fur is rippled-brown-and-black.

    (Say when to stop.)

  5. Pyre says

    SEF @ 4: So, when summonses can’t be delivered, and there’s no response to a published notice in the papers, the judge issues a bench warrant for arrest, and the gods become fugitives from justice. Any funds kept in their names are subject to confiscation in order to hamper their escape, and when police show up at the temples to carry out the arrests, the priests are obliged to declare that the gods are not present there. At which point the worshipers start to wonder why they themselves bothered to come.

    Now what was the downside of this?

  6. says

    PZ, I know you weren’t big on the whole “Presidential Debate on Science” but it has gained a surprising amount of momentum (including a NY Times endorsement).

    Even if it doesn’t happen, I think it’s something worth trying for.

  7. Pyre says

    SEF @ 4: But seriously… this being a civil (not criminal) case… what is going to happen when the gods don’t show up is that “they” forfeit “their” claim to the land.

    Which is good because… how could “they” fulfill the other obligations of a land-owner? If the land held public hazards, how could “they” be compelled by law to remedy the problems? Held in contempt of court? Bailed out? Paroled? Held in violation of parole when “they” failed to report to “their” parole officer?

    It would be worse than dealing with corporations….

    Hey, now there’s an idea. Allah, Inc.; YHVH, Inc.; Hanuman, Inc. — with addresses on record, legal officers, boards of directors,… and the possibility of legal dissolution as a “death penalty” should worst come to worst, the law terminating “their” incorporation godhood.

    Has anyone else noticed that corporations, as “persons under law”, share some traits with gods? Like, uh, not actually being persons? And being damned hard to hold liable? (Since the case you cite is in India, I present Union Carbide for your consideration. Were Kali and her Thuggees really any worse?)

  8. Pyre says

    “Has anyone else noticed that corporations… share some traits with gods?”

    Oh, I should have thought a moment before asking.

    Of course, the Japanese business world has, long since!

    Having employees start every workday with a hymn of praise to the corporation — what could be clearer?

  9. SEF says

    If only the archbishop was giving up being a religious twit (and advising others to do the same – and on a permanent basis) and not merely making a hollow gesture while actually continuing with conman business as usual.

  10. SEF says

    Following on from one of the links in #4, it looks as though some of PZ’s (and his students’) zebra-fish experiments would be illegal in Ohio (#19). Is Ohio devoid of fishy research? Is there a special exemption if you are only drugging the fish in order to mutilate it? That certainly wouldn’t normally apply to human victims.

  11. raven says

    It turns out abstinence only sex education is failing. For the first time in 15 years, the teen pregnancy rate is rising rather than falling. STD rates are up to.

    Yet again another triumph for wackodoodle ideology over common sense and reality. These clowns really don’t care how many lives they ruin as long as they can make their wrongheaded points to their pea brained followers.

    First rise in U.S. teen births since ’91 By MIKE STOBBE, AP Medical Writer
    Thu Dec 6, 7:07 PM ET

    ATLANTA – In a troubling reversal, the nation’s teen birth rate rose for the first time in 15 years, surprising government health officials and reviving the bitter debate about abstinence-only sex education.

    The birth rate had been dropping since its peak in 1991, although the decline had slowed in recent years. On Wednesday, government statisticians said it rose 3 percent from 2005 to 2006.

    The reason for the increase is not clear, and federal health officials said it might be a one-year statistical blip, not the beginning of a new upward trend.

    However, some experts said they have been expecting a jump. They blamed it on increased federal funding for abstinence-only health education that doesn’t teach teens how to use condoms and other contraception.

    Some key sexually transmitted disease rates have been rising, including syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia. The rising teen pregnancy rate is part of the same phenomenon, said Dr. Carol Hogue, an Emory University professor of maternal and child health.

    “It’s not rocket science,” she said. continues …

  12. says

    You know that story out of the UK about the guy who reportedly faked his death and has suddenly shown up after 5 years? Of course, you’ve noticed that his name is John Darwin, right? I’ve been wondering when some rightwingnut is going to write something about this guy’s lack of morals and the fact that his name is Darwin. Anyone want to get a jump on them and do a parody of such a screed?

  13. SEF says

    There has already been an awfully tempting headline for the creationists to quote-mine: “Police charge Darwin with fraud”. However, the Independent article on which I originally saw it is currently returning an error (though it’s still visible in the Google cache and Google also shows other instances of it).

  14. says

    Romney’s Renaissance
    From liberal Massachusetts where Romney campaigned on what the electorate wanted to hear, i.e. religious and social tolerance re gays, abortion, etc, to Philadelphia, thoughts of enlightenment heralding reason and science were the philosophical backbone of a great new country.

    Voltaire on hearing Romney’s new mantra invoked in his “Freedom requires religion” line sat bolt upright. Actually he bumped his head which vexed him all the more.
    “Theese Romney fellow is such a slut” he said. “He makes the liar, Karl Rove, seem pristine and chaste in hees willingness to throw the Constitution under the tumbrils.”
    Labels: enlightenment, flip flop, religious freedom, romney