Monthly Archives: February 2011

Genie Scott on Culture Shocks Regarding Problems in Tennessee Evolution

And other matters, including a summary of what happened in Texas.

The Tennessee Senate has introduced a second anti- evolution bill and the debate over teaching intelligent design in schools continues. Dr. Eugenie Scott, executive director of the National Center for Science Education updates us on the debate.

Click here.

More on Tennessee here, regarding the seventh anti-Evolution bill filed somewhere in the US this year, the second in Tennessee. Yes folks, we are under attack more than ever.

Sarah Palin Hates Lactation

Or is it just that she does whatever Mistress Bachmann tells her to do?

My friend Aseem recently said to me that John McCain may be the USA’s greatest villain for unleashing Sarah Palin. My response: Perhaps, and Michele Bachmann is a great villian for leashing Sarah Palin.

I do find it interesting that Palin gets so much press for what she says and does, but the truth is, Minnesota’s Michele Bachmann, not Sarah Palin, formed the Tea Party, and many of the moves we see Palin pull off are copycat acts following similar moves by Bachmann. It was Bachmann who attacked Michelle “Knows how to spell her name” Obama’s support of nursing for health and well being, claiming that breast feeding was some sort of communist plot cooked up by our Mossleman President from Indonesia (or whatever). And now Palin is following Bachmann’s lead of linking “government being the answer to ever problem” with babes suckling their mother’s breasts.

What Michelle Obama actually did, by the way, is this:

Michelle Obama, who is overseeing an East Wing campaign to promote exercise and healthy eating among children, said last week that infants who are breast-fed longer “have a lower tendency to be obese” as they grow up, a claim supported by medical studies.


So, why are Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin against health? Oh, right… they’re Republicans.

Two items related to the maneno in Wisconsin

Two Decades of Christian Nationalist Education Paved Way for Today’s War on Labor

While some religious leaders have come together to voice support for public employees in Wisconsin, others view the attack on the public sector and unions as a holy war. Fundamentalist textbooks and other media have been used for indoctrination into a worldview in which unregulated free markets are divinely mandated. In this sacralized model of capitalism, those who interfere with the invisible hand of the market are choosing “the state as provider rather than God.” The Koch brothers may have helped finance the current war on workers, but the narratives repeated by the Tea Partiers and their candidates echo those taught from Christian nationalist textbooks for more than two decades.

Click here

Wisconsin State Employees Actually Underpaid

One of the canards that has been prevalent throughout both the federal budget debate and the battle in Wisconsin is the idea that government workers are overpaid. The Economic Policy Institute points out the problem with this argument.

In Wisconsin, which has become a focal point in this debate, public servants already take a pretty hefty pay cut just for the opportunity to serve their communities …

Click here

Why does New Zealand have so many earthquakes and volcanoes?

A 6.3 earthquake has just struck the city of Christchurch, New Zealand, killing dozens and leaving dozens more buried in rubble with rescue workers trying to dig them out. On the TV this morning, the mayor of Christchurch told his story: Having just left a series of meetings, he was sitting on a balcony outside the city offices in a tall building with his executive assistant planning their next activities when the quake struck. They tried to re-enter the building but were repeatedly thrown back away from the entrance way. When the powerful earthquake stopped, he picked himself up off the floor of the balcony and gazed across his city to see absolute devastation including numerous collapsed buildings and destroyed infrastructure.

Continue reading Why does New Zealand have so many earthquakes and volcanoes?

How to get your car out of the snow

Is your car stuck in the snow? There are two ways to get it out. The wrong way and the right way. Here’s the wrong way:

Ignore the snarky comment at the beginning of the video. According to sources with the SPFD and the News, this car caught on fire for the same reason about two or three dozen other cars caught fire over the last several weeks in the Twin Cities. The driver was under the impression that the best way to unstick your stuck-in-the-snow car is to go back and forth between reverse and forward as fast as possible. This is incorrect. Doing anything as fast as possible in the snow does not work. One needs to be gentle with a stuck in the snow car. Treat the gas pedal like a treasured butterfly, apply no more pressure to the pedal than you would apply in patting dry the forehead of a febrile infant, coax the wheels to move no more forcibly than you would coax an unsure lover to accept your gentlest affection.

After digging out as much of the snow and slush as you can, of course.

If you jam the transmission into forward and reverse and rev the engine up like it was a Formula One race car in second place 10 feet behind the first place car in the last six seconds at Daytona, then you risk overheating the transmission. This can cause the transmission fluid to overflow onto the engine that you’ve also made hot (and not in a good way), and the next thing you know your car is doing the Bon Fire Boogie.

Also, when you are trying to drive a car out of deep snow or mud, keep the wheels as straight as possible. Adding weight to increase traction is good. If someone is pushing you, have them down on the car while they push forward, and don’t try the back and forth thing because you will run them over.

Best thing to do, of course, is stay home during the blizzard. I’m not sure why that is so hard to understand.

Faith Healing Deaths in Oregon: New Law will Lift Protection of Religious Child Abusers

A child who is killed by an abusive parent is, in a sense, avenged by the law which seeks to identify, charge, try, convict, sentence and punish such a parent. Abuse might include something obvious like striking a child with a weapon, but it can also include starving the child to death or other forms of neglect, or failing to provide life-saving medical treatment. In other words, if your child is deathly ill and you don’t take him or her to a medical facility or otherwise seek treatment, and the child dies, you are at fault.

Unless, of course, you are all religious and shit.
Continue reading Faith Healing Deaths in Oregon: New Law will Lift Protection of Religious Child Abusers

Things are not going well in Libya (and: Where is Libya?)

The son of Libyan leader Gadhafi/kadafi claims that the “government” (which is not really true but its complicated) will fight to the last bullet against people engaged there in an uprising.

Even as Seif al-Islam Gadhafi spoke Sunday night, clashes were raging in and around Tripoli’s central Green Square, lasting until dawn Monday, witnesses said. They reported snipers opening fire on crowds trying to seize the square, and Gadhafi supporters speeding through in vehicles, shooting and running over protesters. Early Monday, protesters took over the office of two of the multiple state-run satellite news channels, witnesses said.

The protests and violence were the heaviest yet in the capital, a sign of the spread of unrest after six days of demonstrations in eastern cities demanding the end of the elder Gadhafi’s rule.

Continue reading Things are not going well in Libya (and: Where is Libya?)