We've moved to:
The import made odd duplicates, but there it is.
Friday, March 8, 2013
We've moved to:
Saturday, November 21, 2009
The Bible and the religions supported by it (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam), are false, and would not be the word of any moral god.How can I make such an indictment? Because the Bible teaches things which are immoral. The god of the bible encourages his followers to do many many immoral things, but let's just take slavery as an example. The Bible doesn't just condone slavery, it encourages it, in both the old and new testaments.
- 1 Peter 2:18 - Servants, be subject to your masters
- Titus 2:9-10 - Servants, obey in all things your masters
- 1 Timothy 6:1-5 - Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their masters worthy of all honor
- Colossians 3:22 - Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters
- Ephesians 6:5 - Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh
- Leviticus 25:44-46 - Thy bond-men and thy bond-maids which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you: of them shall ye buy bond-men and bond-maids. Moreover, of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land. And they shall be your possession. And ye shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession, they shall be your bond-man forever.
The Bible was used during the U. S. Civil War by southern slave-owners to show that any good Christian should recognize that god condones slavery. And they were right. The god in the Bible does condone slavery. In fact this god's followers are admonished to obey him just as slaves should obey their masters. Luckily, these are just stories people made up thousands of years ago. We can do better. We can be more moral.
Posted by Mike at 10:18 PM
Friday, January 16, 2009
In President Bush's farewell speech, he reflected on his accomplishments, and asked us to at least "agree that he was willing to make the tough decisions"
Well I'm sorry Mr. Bush, I do not agree. In order for a decision to be difficult, it takes empathy. It takes the courage to admit you are unsure. Great leaders agonize over the choices they must make. They are thinkers who understand that even their deepest convictions are subject to question.
You have shown that you believe that your conviction to your beliefs are correct to the exclusion of all others, and not subject to question or uncertainty. This is a hallmark of the despot.
I remember your debate campaign rhetoric where you proudly touted you and your state's "accomplishments" in meting out the death penalty often and swiftly. When asked, you might say that each of these was a tough decision, but your giddy smirk exposes that as a lie. You felt it was right, so for you it was not a tough decision.
You claim that you lowered taxes for every taxpayer, but where did you get the money to do that? It wasn't by decreasing spending like a real Republican should; you have increased spending more than any President before you.
You say you have increased standards in public schools, created a new medicare drug benefit, created faith-based programs, doubled funding for veterans. Did you take the money to do those things out of you our pocket? If you didn't fund it with taxes, where did you get the money? I'll tell you where. You took it out of the pockets of our children. The money was just added to the national debt, so future taxpayers could pay for it. This amounts to a twisted form of socialism, where our children and our children's children will be given the bill for the money you have given primarily to the wealthy in the present day. You may never understand why this was wrong, but be assured, history will. I suppose when you have certainty that Armageddon is near, the finances of your great grandchildren are unimportant.
You claim that Afghanistan is now a young democracy, and that Iraq has been transformed from a dictatorship to a democratic friend of the united states, and go on to say that killing the innocent to advance an ideology is wrong everytime, everywhere. But didn't your unjust war kill innocent people to advance your doctrine of regime change to archive a democratic Iraq? Again, your certainty that this was the right thing to do is why, for you, this decision was an easy one, and why you will be chastised by history. I remember the conversations before the war where it was said by many that time would show if an invasion of Iraq was a good idea. Well time has told us that our involvement has only served to reduce our security, reduce our stature, and cause more instability in the world. You have not merly failed to improve the world, your actions have directly reduced peace in the world, in increased death and suffering.
Posted by Mike at 11:53 PM
Saturday, December 20, 2008
A Continental flight carrying 112 passengers, bound for Houston from Denver caught fire and went off the runway during takeoff.
Although there were some injuries, all passengers successfully evacuated. We have excellent crew training to thank for the survival of all passengers.
Posted by Mike at 10:49 PM
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
In this short video, The National Center for Science Education shows why "Intelligent Design" is merely religion in disguise.
An excerpt from the draft of Of Pandas and People, written before 1987 said:
Creation means that various forms of life begin abruptly through the agency of an intelligent creator, with their distinctive features already intact- fish with fins and scales, birds with feathers, beaks and wings, etc.
Then, a decision by the The United States Supreme Court on June 19, 1987, declared the teaching of Creationism in Science classes Unconstitutional. Immediately following this decision, the book was edited to read:
Intelligent Design means that various forms of life begin abruptly through an intelligent agency, with their distinctive features already intact- fish with fins and scales, birds with feathers, beaks and wings, etc.
Clearly, this was to rename and disguise creationism in order to circumvent the law.
Furthermore, as all biologists know, it has been demonstrated by evidence that life did not begin abruptly with traits intact, and transitional forms of life showing evolutionary development of fins, scales, beaks, wings, etc, are commonly known.
Unfortunately, it seems this evidence is being intentionally ignored by Ben Stein and his supporters. If he really cared about what was true, rather than about supporting what he already believed, all he would have to do is look at the evidence. The evidence is overwhelming, and unless one is lying, undeniable.
Posted by Mike at 10:43 AM
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
Once we understand what it is we are discussing, how can we discover if it’s true? Are there any ways to discriminate between truth and non-truth?
The Scientific Method is one possible way. The Scientific Method, is, of course, mostly just a fancy way of saying that we are looking at and analyzing evidence, to find the conclusions supported by this evidence.
Faith has been proposed as another way to find truth.
I’ve heard it said that there are many paths to truth, and faith is one. Or that faith is a different path to knowing. What exactly is faith? And how does it differ from the scientific method in discriminating truth from non-truth?
The word Faith has many definitions. It has come to have subtle secondary meanings such as trust and hope, but what does faith mean apart from these other well defined terms.
The primary definition of Faith, is believing that something is true. Period. Faith requires no proof. It is a personal decision.
The problem with this, is that if we are trying to discriminate between truth and non-truth, and the method you’re using determines truth by simply stating something is believed to be true, then anything can be determined to be true, simply by asserting that it is. This is literally saying “Because I say so”.
This seems obviously inadequate.
This leaves me, with the scientific method, as the only method for differentiating truth from non-truth. Is there any other way?
Posted by Mike at 11:10 PM
Saturday, December 30, 2006
Before we accept an idea as true, we need some way for us to discriminate truth from non-truth. But before we can do that, we need to have some understanding of the idea in question.
If I say that I have seen a UFO, you may or may not believe me. But if I tell you that I consider any object in the sky that I can’t identify to be a UFO, you would be much more likely to believe me, for my given definition of a UFO. The point here is, that before we can discover truth, such as the existence of some thing, we first have to know what the thing is that we’re talking about. We need to agree on a definition. Otherwise, we may not be talking about the same thing, and misunderstandings will result. This is often the case when we talk about Gods. What is it that we are discussing when we talk of a God? There are many descriptions of many Gods, and different people believe different things about the Gods they believe in. What are the attributes of your God?
Posted by Mike at 10:22 AM
Wednesday, December 6, 2006
There are things that you and I believe to be true, and there are things we believe to be false. We may not believe the same things, and will often believe things that make it impossible for us both to be correct. There are times when at least one of us must be wrong, and possibly both of us. But we may still know we are correct.
Does it matter who is correct? If you or I have a belief that the other "knows" to be wrong, do we care? Sometimes. If a christian believes that I, as an atheist, will go to hell unless I accept Jesus Christ as my savior, and tries to convince me to see his beliefs are true, it's at least in part because the christian cares about me. When I as an atheist try to show why god beliefs are false, it is at least in part because I care about you and our society.
So for many of us, truth, is important. If we have the goal to work together to find the truth, how can we determine who among us is correct in our beliefs?
Posted by Mike at 7:02 PM
My purpose in saying this is not to be divisive. In fact quite the contrary. I'd like to understand why people feel that faith, rather than evidence and reason, can result in beliefs that are true. I don't see faith assisting in finding truth; rather our best chance at reaching truth is through reason and reasonableness.
These posts represent short thoughts for discussion.