Archive for February, 2008


February 19, 2008 Leave a comment

Obama wins again.

You know, I’m trying my very best to remember that Clinton’s policies are solid, but holy hell, her campaign seems to be run by a bunch of sleazy assholes of late.

Also, this is ridiculous. Obama has said some stupid shit about religion, but this isn’t it. Fix our souls? In context, I read that as an assertion that our indifference to inequality is due to personal, moral failings that we need to rectify. She used religious language, but it’s a leap to think she means we all need to take Jesus into our hearts and be saved. I would rather our candidates stay away from religion, but this is pretty mild.

Categories: 2008 elections

Like cures like

February 18, 2008 3 comments

I keep seeing ads for Zicam on TV. Zicam is a homeopathic cold remedy that, unlike most homeopathic remedies, has progressed beyond anti-modern medicine hippiedom and found a marketing department. Homeopathy combines two stupid ideas: the claim that taking a substance that causes symptoms similar to an illness will cure that illness and that such a substance is most effective when diluted to the point where you’ve only ingested a couple of molecules of it.

I guess the moral of the story is that next time you get a headache, hit yourself in the head with a bat. A really tiny one.

Can you tell I’m bored tonight?

Categories: Skepticism

People are weird

February 18, 2008 Leave a comment

Apparently there are weird lights in Texas. Not all that weird, but then there’s this person, who posits that since they appear to be spinning, the Air Force could be experimenting with time travel. Now, you might think that’s a bit of a leap. You’d be wrong. It’s actually several gigantic leaps the landing points of which may not even exist. I prefer my simpler theory, which is that the Air Force has created enormous bits of rainbow colored Kabbalah string and is throwing them in the air in order to protect us from terrorists.

Item 2 is the fact that people actually watch professional wrestling. Apparently Vince McMahon has a midget son who is going to fight him in a steel cage. Every time I see an ad for one of those events I seriously consider becoming one of those Christians who thinks everything on TV is satanic.

Item 3 is that a city council in England paid a psychic to rid a house of poltergeists. She put a “circle of salt” in the house and the ghost left. Apparently ghosts are deathly afraid of getting clogged arteries.

Categories: Silliness, Skepticism

Turns out, they don't know where I am

February 13, 2008 Leave a comment

I got some junk mail from Reason today, one of those envelopes with a satellite photo of your home (like the covers they did a while back). Amusingly, the arrow points to the intersection by my apartment and where my apartment complex should be is a vacant lot. I guess I’m safe for now.

Categories: Silliness

The state of things

February 13, 2008 1 comment

This next election is going to be fun. I think. I seem to go back and forth about this. I see something that worries me, then I see something that makes me hopeful.

I’m happy with Clinton or Obama as the Democratic nominee. Neither is a bad candidate. However, I’m definitely hoping Obama gets it. For all the experience and supposed expertise of the Clinton campaign, it’s not impressing me of late. If I’m going to vote with a rather ugly political machine, I’m going to be sure it’s at least effective. Burning through the kind of money they have is disconcerting.

While I’m not worried about the eventual nominee, I’m a little worried about how that nominee comes to be. If things get ugly at the convention with the superdelegates swinging the nomination one way or another, dividing the party, I think the Democratic party is screwed. Sure, maybe everyone will make up in short order like the Republican base and John McCain seem to have done, but I have my doubts.

On the other side, we’re going to have to deal with McCain. If there was a candidate I was afraid of in the general, it was McCain. His independent reputation is a huge asset. Going off of primary exit polls, he’s pulling in the anti-war Republican vote. Bizarre, considering McCain is the maybe most hawkish Republican of all those who ran. So that’ll be dispensed with in short order and I can’t see independents being happy with McCain’s willingness to stay in Iraq for the next century. And when you consider that McCain has little to offer outside of foreign policy, he’ll have a hard time making up any ground with those who dislike that stance. That said, Clinton is probably not the candidate to best take advantage of those weaknesses, as she’s somewhat hawkish as well and won’t be as enticing to independents as Obama would be. All in all, I think the Democratic nominee can deal with McCain’s maverick status.

Someone at work the other day said Republicans will vote for Republicans, but Democrats may break off and vote for McCain. Considering the incredible turnout the Democratic primaries have been generating, that seems ridiculous. I’ve seen far more of those on the other side express interest in Obama than vice-versa. I think most Democrats by now are aware that McCain is very much a Republican and not much of a maverick.

Who knows what’s going to happen. I’m optimistic and I’m actually looking forward to voting for Obama or Clinton.

Categories: 2008 elections

Special treatment

February 11, 2008 Leave a comment

This is less than inspiring:

Muslim medical students are refusing to obey hygiene rules brought in to stop the spread of deadly superbugs, because they say it is against their religion.

Women training in several hospitals in England have raised objections to removing their arm coverings in theatre and to rolling up their sleeves when washing their hands, because it is regarded as immodest in Islam.

Universities and NHS trusts fear many more will refuse to co-operate with new Department of Health guidance, introduced this month, which stipulates that all doctors must be “bare below the elbow”.

The rules are there for a reason, are they not? No one seems to backing down on this, so that’s good. Still, you can’t really grant special treatment here. I know I wouldn’t want someone who was refusing to follow hygiene rules to operate on me. And I wouldn’t feel great about requesting a non-Muslim doctor, nor would I have that option in some cases. Alas, I don’t live in England, but who’s to say there won’t be any objections over here?

Of course, we wouldn’t be having these problems if people were rational enough to reject the absolutely ridiculous idea that baring your arms has been decreed “immodest” by imaginary authorities.

But, I suppose the objecting Muslims can quit, as some seem to be considering. If you can’t follow the rules, you have to find a different line of work. After all, If you don’t believe in extra-marital sex you don’t become porn star.

Alright, that was a little extreme. You don’t become a pharmacist if distributing certain medicines is against your religion.

Damn it, we’re screwed.

(via Pharyngula)

Categories: Religion


February 7, 2008 Leave a comment

My inability to post has been fixed. Ironically, the problem was an inability to post.

If you can guess what that means, you’re allowed to add 3% to any future Internet geek test you take.

Categories: Blogging, Tech

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