reason

Goddidit

I have to be really careful what I say this week; not because I’ve offended someone and I suddenly feel all guilty about it (as if). No, the reason I should put on my comfy slippers and tread softly, rather than donning my beloved heavy-as-fuck New Rocks and stomp (as usual) through the subject with the kind of psychotic vigour that the hammer-happy god Thor would be flushed with when playing “Whack-A-Mole”, is that the book I’ve been reading and mini-reviewing chapter by chapter on Twitter over the last few days was written by someone who had previously sued, for libel, the author of a scathing review (and general comment on the book’s author) that had been posted on Amazon. Since I’d ideally like to avoid sharing that particular experience, I will be taking great pains to distinguish clearly between the things I state as opinion, and those I state as fact. With that consideration, and the first eight chapters of “The Attempted Murder Of God: Hidden Science You Really Need To Know” by Scrooby, freshly in mind, I’d like this week to talk in a light-hearted satirical fashion about scientific ignorance, specifically the kind that only ever seems to come from religious drivel-mongers [opinion]. Read more “Goddidit”

Sign Here

Do you want to hear something really spooky? This post is my thirty-eighth on this site and it comes in the week when I celebrate my thirty-eighth birthday! Isn’t that weird? What do you think it might mean? Hold on, don’t answer, because it gets better! I share my birthday with Dave Grohl, Faye Dunaway, and Richard Briers, which is amazing because, get this, I really like the Foo Fighters, “The Towering Inferno” is one of my favourite films, and I thought Margot was the funniest character in “The Good Life”! Isn’t that incredible? The connections are just so far beyond explanation, it’s almost as if there was some kind of cosmic plan, a purpose to it all … don’t you think? No? Really? Well thank fuck for that because that means you’re not a cloud-brained dipshit who infers a meaning behind every coincidence – I can’t stand you people. If you were too busy drooling out of one side of your mouth when your parents explained the concept of probability to you by way of throwing dice, wake up, wipe your chin, and pay attention – it’s time to learn something. Read more “Sign Here”

Bring it

So, as I was saying last week before I became hopelessly sidetracked into ranting about Jeremy Clarkson (it’s easily done, I know, what with him being in possession of a face that would look infinitely better if a fist was ploughing through it faster than a Bugatti Veyron with a rocket up its arse), I have recently been involved in a Twitter-based scientific argument with a user by the name of @Adam4004. His name, which consists of a reference to both the bible’s first man and the year (BCE) literalists claim is when the earth was created, was my first clue to his being a young earth creationist (or “moron” for short). The second was that he offered not a single scrap of evidence for any of his frequently asinine claims, choosing instead simply to assert the truth of his statements whilst ignoring all requests to provide references and citations for the many studies and peer-reviewed papers that undoubtedly support them. The reason we had to go through such a frustrating dance is that evidence to a theist is like a backbone to Nick Clegg; they can’t show any, because they ain’t got any. Read more “Bring it”

404 Mage Not Found

My first thought upon hearing the news this week that Apple CEO, and co-founder, Steve Jobs had died was not that the world had lost an inspirational thinker and visionary who fundamentally changed our relationship with technology (that thought was in there – it just wasn’t my first); I didn’t even leap, as I ordinarily would, straight to the cynical and anti-corporate, “Oh no, who’s going to come up with ideas for what Chinese children should build next?” (although that was in there too). No, my first thought was, given Jobs’ extraordinarily high-profile as CEO of the biggest tech company on earth, how long would it be before the Westboro Baptist Church crawled out of the festering gutter they lurk in to announce that they were going to protest his funeral? As it turned out “less than a day” was the correct answer and, when their infamous tweet came rather ironically via an iPhone (prompting a torrent of amused derision), I started to wonder why on earth theists ever bother to go anywhere near the internet when they so regularly, and completely, get their arses handed to them every time they do. Read more “404 Mage Not Found”

Measles, McCarthy, and Reason

Every one of us has, at some point in our lives, met someone truly deserving of the label, “gobshite”; someone who, rather like a geography teacher, could speak at great length about nothing in particular. The kind of person who could bang on for hours, like a carpenter with OCD, and never say anything worth listening to. For the most part, we simply tolerate their seemingly limitless capacity for verbal diarrhoea and see it as little more than a minor annoyance – the kind of grating personality trait that we all have and others learn to work around. Occasionally, however, we’d meet a prolific purveyor of bovine faeces that cannot be ignored because they’ve strayed far beyond the realms of the irritatingly harmless and into the territory of the positively lethal; someone who can talk themselves, and those around them, into deep trouble with consummate ease. The kind of person to whom you find yourself saying “seriously, dude, you need to shut the fuck up” far too often. If you want a classic example of the “dangerous gobshite”, look no further than Jenny McCarthy. Read more “Measles, McCarthy, and Reason”

A Manifesto In A-Minor

About two weeks ago I found myself on the receiving end of a minor ticking off from my mum over having used the c-word in a Facebook status update. Ignoring the obvious fact that I’m 37 years old and, if I want to swear, then I bollocking well arsing will, I think I acquitted myself fairly well. I entirely agreed that it is a deeply offensive word to many people (to some, the most offensive) but, ultimately, it is still just a word and, as such, its ability to cause harm or offence rests entirely with how, and by whom, it is used … rather like the bar of soap my mum threatened to wash my mouth out with – it’s just a tool, and it can be used for good or evil. Read more “A Manifesto In A-Minor”

My atheism

I’m not sure when I became an atheist; in a way, I guess I always have been. Sure, there have been times when I dipped my toe in the waters of faith, but I always felt rather hollow, usually to the point of dishonesty, when I did. I didn’t really, deep-down believe what I was trying to persuade myself I believed and, on the very few occasions in my life that I actually prayed, I felt like a complete fraud; wishing out loud to a being I didn’t believe existed for shortcuts to problems I was either unable, or too lazy, to solve myself. Read more “My atheism”