Thursday, February 26, 2015

National Catholic Distorter Uses Presbyterian to Distort Catholic Teaching.

To a good many traditionally minded Catholics, the National Catholic Reporter is refered to as the National Catholic Distorter because of their disapproval of many of the teachings of the Church, especially in the areas of contraception, women clergy and married priests.

In looking for definite signs of their distortion of Catholicism, we need look no further than the website's publishing of the opinions of Presbyterian elder,Bill Tammeus. His latest bit of nonsense is entitled How churches can keep up with the evolving definition of marriage.

He writes,

"Marriage is changing, and the Episcopal Church, unlike many other branches of Christianity, has awakened to the news and is thinking deeply about how to respond.

All of Christianity should do the same."

According to Tammeus, following the lead of the Episcopal Church, all of Christianity should work on creating a ceremony through which to bless same-sex unions.

Tammeus goes on.

"In almost any Protestant, Catholic or Orthodox congregation today, you'll find young couples, both heterosexual and homosexual, cohabitating. And you'll find older single people living together but not married for many reasons, including issues of taxes and inheritance laws."

"Are all of these people -- often faithful church members -- 'living in sin,' as the old phrase so indelicately puts it?"

In a word, Mr.Tammeus, yes.

Tammeus believes that one reason many people -- both young and old -- have abandoned the Church, is the Church's universal failure to accept "marriage's changing nature". If the Church will get with the program, more folks will want to stay.

What absolute hogwash.

In John, Chapter six, we find,

Then many of his disciples who were listening said, 'This saying is hard; who can accept it?'


As a result of this, many [of] his disciples returned to their former way of life and no longer accompanied him.

Jesus did not modify His teaching in order to keep followers. Neither should the Church.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Mars One's Space Cadets.

I vaguely remember reading about Mars One a year or so ago. I recall looking at a few of the applicants' videos, but the project didn't hold my interest long enough for even one blog post. I'm sure I would have forgotten entirely about the
scamproject had I not come across a piece on naming the four Chinese candidates who had made the top 100 list for the one way trip to Mars.
Of these 100, 24 will be chosen to receive special training for the six one-way trips.

A list of the 100 can be found here.

The four Chinese candidates are Li Dapeng and Lin Xiaoxia from China, Sue Ann Pien from the US and Maggie Lieu from the UK.

Li Dapeng, a married man with at least one child, does not have his family's support. According to Li will continue to be part of the project, though he might drop out halfway if his family voices strong disapproval. Of the 100 names on the list, he is the only candidate who does not give English as his language. In the unlikely event that this
scamproject does take off, I don't see him being in the top have to be able to communicate with your fellow Martians, after all.

While over 200,000 people took the project seriously enough to apply for one of the 24 spots, not everyone believes anyone from Mars One will ever visit the red planet. lists a few reasons why Mars One won't happen.

Mars One estimates the cost for the project to be $6 billion. Most outside experts consider that estimate far too low. It's probably a mote point since the company hasn't come close to raising the $6 billion.

"It’s estimated that the company has raised only a few million dollars in funding, and last year an Indiegogo campaign to raise just £260,000 ($400,000) failed".

The company also has no spacecraft in development, or rocket that can launch anything into space.
The company has not shown any research into the effects of microgravity on humans, or how they plan to keep humans safe during their mission to Mars.

Quite probably the candidate who has received the most exposure is the American Sonia Van Meter (AKA Bourbonface) who recently wrote a piece for Time, and whose husband, Jason Standford wrote an article for Texas Monthly last year.

Not everyone leaving a comment on Standford's article was supportive of the wanna-be astronaut.

"If she would abandon you for Mars, she would abandon you for something else if she deemed it sufficiently novel."

"The whole article is about poor beta male Jason and his wife, who studied sociology and works at a political consulting firm, suddenly deciding to drop all her commitments on his lap and run off on a one-way trip to Mars".

"If she had to ask if she was being a bad wife, she already has her answer. It just shows how she didn't bother to think about what she was doing, how her dream will affect her family. Whether she stays or goes at this point in immaterial, she's already shown she's not really committed to being a wife and mother."

I don't want to be seen as beating a dead horse, but I cannot understand how Van Meter made this list. She doesn't appear to have any particular scientific expertise - she is the Managing Director of Stanford Caskey, a national Democratic opposition research firm. Giving her the benefit of the doubt by assuming she does her current job very well, I don't see that as qualifying her for a mission to Mars. Unless, of course, the Mars One group views Democrats as de facto space cadets.

She'll turn 45 in 2024 when the first of the six voyages are supposed to take place......55 in '34 for the final trip. OK, 60 may be the new 30, does Mars One really want middle-aged colonists?

Judging by her photos posted with the Times article , Van Meter doesn't appear to be the athletic type. Will she have the stamina nine or ten years from now to colonize an uninhabitable planet?

It's being reported that the Astronauts Vying for One-Way Ticket to Mars May Be on Reality TV. There are some who believe that Mars One is simply a Truman Show-style scam and that the candidates won't actually be sent to Mars; they'll be tricked into believing they've left Earth while being kept in a Big Brother type environment.

With the money Mars One has available for their project, that seems to be the most logical assessment.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Ingrid Bergman - Time Traveler.

India recently published online, a photo gallery of several famous people who had died on their birthday. Of the twenty one celebrities listed, I am only familiar with four or five.

One of my favorites on the list is Ingrid Bergman.

Oddly enough, not only was I surprised to learn that she was born and had died on August 29, but I was equally shocked to find out that she had also been a time traveler. At least that's the way I interpret the information in the gallery.

India Times gives Ms Bergman's date of birth as Aug. 29, 1982 and her death as 1915. According to the site, she died before she was born. The only explanation I could come up with for this is that she had to have been a time traveler......quite possibly on the TARDIS.

If anyone has a better explanation, I'd love to hear it.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Australia and Indonesia at Odds over Death Penalty.

In April, 2005, nine Australian citizens were arrested at Denpasar airport in Bali on suspicion of attempting to smuggle more than eight kilos of heroin out of Indonesia, following a tip from Australian police.
All nine were subsequently convicted; seven are currently serving sentences of between 20 years and life, while two - Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, who the court has determined had recruited the others - were sentenced to death by firing squad.

I want to say from the start that my feelings on capital punishment follow the Catechism of the Catholic Church and Pope John Paul II :

[Punishment] ought not go to the extreme of executing the offender except in cases of absolute necessity: in other words, when it would not be possible otherwise to defend society. Today however, as a result of steady improvements in the organization of the penal system, such cases are very rare, if not practically non-existent.

Indonesian president Joko Widodo has a policy of denying clemency for all drug offenders, and has chosen to ignore Australia's (and the UN's) pleas for mercy.

As much as I agree that the death penalty is too harsh a penalty, I can't say I agree with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott's approach.

In 2004, Australia sent over $1 billion (Australian) in aid to Indonesia after the Boxing Day tsunami. Abbott is of the opinion that Indonesia needs to "pay back" Australia's generosity by not carrying out the executions.

"I would say to the Indonesian people and the Indonesian government: We in Australia are always there to help you, and we hope that you might reciprocate," Abbott said.

So, humanitarian aid must be paid back? There are strings attached? We aren't supposed to help our fellow man without getting something in return?

According to the bbc,

Mr Abbott suggested there would be consequences if the appeals were ignored.

"We will be making our displeasure known. We will be letting Indonesia know in absolutely unambiguous terms that we feel grievously let down."

I understand the frustrations of the Australians who want the Indonesian government to show mercy toward Sukumaran and Chan. Bali has been a popular vacation spot for Australians, but now, many in Australia are calling for a boycott.

In response, many in Indonesia believe "it's time for Australia to educate their people about how to behave as tourists" by not adding to the drug problem.

While the executions have been postponed, it's only a matter of time. Sukumaran and Chan are in need of our prayers.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Parking Space, or Hate Crime?

When I first learned of the murder of three Muslims in Chapel Hill NC, I couldn't understand how anyone could possibly believe that this was anything other than a hate crime. Yet, quite a few people seem to buy into the idea that Craig Hicks was enraged over parking spaces.


"Police in Chapel Hill said they have yet to uncover any evidence that Hicks, 46, allegedly acted out of religious animus, though they are investigating the possibility. As a potential motive, they cited a dispute over parking spaces at the condo community where Hicks and two of the victims lived."

I've been wondering......why are people arguing over the killer's motive? If convicted, Hicks is unlikely to ever be a free man again, no matter what his reason may have been for murdering the three execution style.

Surprisingly, Hicks' Facebook page is still online  and looking at it, I think I might have found the answer to my question.

His Facebook page reveals Hicks to be a typical, "progressive" Democrat. He's an atheist, he's anti-theist, he supports same-sex "marriage" and abortion "rights". He hates all the things Bill Maher and Rachel Maddow tell us we should hate (like religion). On Facebook, he "likes" anything Liberal and/or anti-Republican.

The same people who would have used his Christianity or conservatism - if he had been Christian and Conservative - against all Christians and Conservatives, are now telling us that Hicks' belief system is not the issue. They're telling us he was simply a gun-nut with anger management issues.

Liberal, Democrat and atheist? Move along, nothing to see here, folks.

The photo below was used by Hicks on his Facebook page. He doesn't want your baseless superstitions killing people, but I guess killing someone over a parking spot is OK.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Number One Comment on

To Liberals, Being Called Racist is Worse than Being Called Murderer.

As a great philosopher once said, "Denial ain't a river in Egypt".

We can be certain of that bit of wisdom now, as Karen Hicks, wife of the man suspected in murdering 3 young Muslims in Chapel Hill, North Carolina,though certainly in denial, apparently isn't likely to have visited Egypt - or any other Muslim country - recently.

At a news conference Wednesday, Hicks said, "This incident had nothing to do with religion or the victims' faith, but in fact was related to the longstanding parking disputes that my husband had with the neighbors."

Karen Hicks is the only one who believes that.

When asked by a reporter why she believed the murders were not a hate crime, Hicks said that her husband often championed same-sex "marriage", abortion and race. You know, all the things Liberals and atheists believe are wonderful.

In the cnn video, the suspect doesn't seem to have a problem believing her husband could commit murder, but she draws the line at hearing that her husband is a bigot, 'cause, you know, being called a racist is worse than being called a murderer.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Misreadings from the Left and the Right.

In spite of the fact that Pope Francis continues to "disappoint" Left leaning Catholics with his statements on women's ordination, abortion and artificial birth control, as well as his recent endorsement of a Slovak referendum to ban marriage and adoption by same-sex couples, progressive writers, such as Sarah Posner, press on with their attempt to drive a wedge between conservative Catholics and the Catholic Church by asserting that Pope Francis is really one of them (Progressives) and not at all like his predecessors.

In her opinion piece on Pope Francis' upcoming joint session of the United States' Congress, for Aljazeera, Posner predicts that the pontiff will not be speaking on those issues where he disagrees with the Left, but will use his congressional speech as a forum for discussing the current global economic order, the role of government in alleviating inequality, and the issues of immigration and climate change.

People on both ends of the political spectrum - the Right and the Left - need to wake up to the fact that the teachings of the Catholic Church do not fit into traditional American political categories where religion can be used as a sjambok to beat down your political opponents.

Pope Francis was right, of course, in saying, "A good Catholic meddles in politics, offering the best of himself, so that those who govern can govern." But, when we meddle in politics, as Catholics, we should do so with an eye to following the Catechism of the Catholic Church and not bending the teachings of the Church to fit our own agendas.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

More on the "Meditating" Monks.

This past Friday, I published a post on a mummified monk found in Siberia who some had speculated was not dead but in deep meditation.

I wrote that the story was not unlike the claims by followers of Ashutosh Maharaj who believed that he was also in samadhi and not dead.

Ashutosh had been declared clinically dead in January, 2014 but has been kept in a freezer since that time, rather than cremated. As I reported, the followers Ashutosh had won a court battle in Dec. 2014, delaying his cremation until February 9, 2015.

Now, as reported by two Indian websites ( hindustantimes and the a Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court adjourned till March 19 the matter of Ashutosh's cremation. It looks as if he'll remain in deep freeze for at least another month or so.

Today, The Siberian Times is reporting an update on the mummified monk.

Professor of the Mongolian Institute of Buddhist Art at Ulaanbaatar Buddhist University, Ganhugiyn Purevbat said he is certain the remains are those of a man called Tsorzh Sanzhzhav, who lived 200 years ago. Last week, Purevbat had speculated that the mummy was not dead, but in deep meditation, but Purevbat has changed his mind.

He said: "Earlier I said that maybe Lama is not dead but was in very deep meditation in the ancient tradition of Buddhist lamas. But it is not so. Tsorzh Sanzhzhav and his teacher were specially buried in this form".

The story did not explain the reason for the professor's change of heart.

The mummy will be cleaned and taken back to Sodnomdarzhaa Mountain, 50km from the Tsakhir in the Arkhangai district, where he was found on January 27.

Alabama Falls.

Callie V. S. Granade,district judge for the United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama - put there by President George W Bush in 2002 - issued a ruling, this past January 23, striking down Alabama's ban on same-sex "marriage". Judging by the damage caused by this ruling, a more appropriate spelling of the judge's name might be Grenade.

In a 7-2 decision, the United States Supreme Court refused the state’s request to stay Judge Grenade’s order pending the outcome of the state’s appeal.

Alabama has become the 37th US state where same-sex "marriage" is now legal. The Supreme Court will take up the issue in April. I suspect that legalized same-sex "marriage" will be the law of the land in the United States before 2015 is over. We shouldn't be surprised. Any court that could find reason to legalize abortion on demand would have little compunction legalizing same-sex "marriage".

After same-sex "marriage" is legalized in all fifty States later this year, it will be only a matter of time before Churches in the U.S. will be brought to court in order to force same-sex "marriage" upon them. The question remains as to which Christian churches will cave to government pressure.

As it stands today, the Protestant churches are split on the issue; some in favor, some not. Of the three main divisions of Judaism - Conservative, Reform and Orthodox - only Orthodox Jews uphold the sanctity of marriage between one man, one woman. The Catholic Church, the Church of Latter-Day Saints (Mormon) and Islam are all opposed to same-sex "marriage". I'm hoping the Catholic Church in America will stand up against the government.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Ark Encounters of the Blurred Kind.

Self described apologetics ministry, Answers in Genesis (AiG), owners of the 70,000 square foot Creation Museum (where "dinosaurs roam near Eden’s Rivers") are currently building a theme park in Williamstown, Kentucky, which will feature a life-size replica of the biblical Noah's Ark, called Ark Encounter.

According to The Christian Post, AiG is filing a lawsuit against Kentucky for denying the Ark Encounter theme park participation in the state's tax rebate incentive program, arguing that the refusal is based on religious discrimination against the creationist group's beliefs.

The article goes on to say that Kentucky officials initially offered $18 million in tax incentives, but has now retracted the offer over AiG's intent to show religious preference in its hiring.

This news story has prompted me to re-read the story of the Flood, as told in chapters 6 thru 9 in Genesis.

Noah's story in Genesis doesn't mention how long it took to build the ark, or who, specifically helped Noah in the construction. I am assuming that Noah was assisted by his three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Surely, no one else helped; I'd hate to think that some of those who might have helped Noah were left behind when it started raining. So, I'm going with the idea that four men worked on the ark, using primitive tools to cut down the gopher wood, saw the wood, put it all together and cover it with pitch.

The Bible gives the size of the ark as three hundred cubits long, fifty cubits wide with a height of thirty cubits. I don't know the length of a cubit, but it must be quite long. After all, it would take a very large boat indeed to hold "of every clean pairs, a male and its mate; and of the unclean animals, one pair, a male and its mate; likewise, of every bird of the air, seven pairs, a male and a female, to keep their progeny alive over all the earth", as well as "all the food that is to be eaten".

As mentioned above, AiG plans for their ark to be a life-size replica of Noah's. Does life-size mean full-size ?

I'm fairly certain that AiG will not attempt to build an ark larger than the original, but where as Noah had (in all likelihood) only three helpers, AiG needs bulldozers with GPS receivers mounted to the blades, cement trucks, backhoes and cranes. I won't speculate as to the number of men who will be employed, other than to say that there will probably be more than four.

The Ark Encounter website gives the projected budget as $29.5M.

I'm not going to put forth any "separation of Church and State" nonsense when arguing against the $18 million tax incentives. I'm just wondering why AiG doesn't use the same funding Noah used when he constructed his ark. The Bible makes not mention of Noah needing $29.5 million to get the job done. AiG should be able to build their ark in the same manner.

Sister Megan Serving Her Sentence.

I've never watched an episode of Orange is the New Black, but, judging from two recent articles on Sister Megan Rice, [NPR and DailyNews] I'm missing out on a very popular program.

In both articles, where we are updated on the imprisonment of Sister Rice for breaking into the nuclear facility in Oak Ridge, Tenn., the writers feel the need to reference the Netlix program.

It is not my purpose here to comment on the actions of the 84 year old nun, or to speak to whether or not her imprisonment is justified.

No, I wish to comment strictly on the stories covering her imprisonment.

In the NY DailyNews exclusive, we are told that the 84-year-old activist nun is imprisoned in Brooklyn jail "hellhole" and that Sister Megan lives in "horrifying and deplorable" conditions in a single room with 111 other women" in the Metropolitan Detention Center.

The single room turns out to be a gymnasium-size dorm unit with 60 bunk beds for the 111 women. Along one wall of the dorm are "six half-enclosed toilet stalls, six sinks and six shower stalls". I admit that six toilet stalls, divided by 111 women doesn't seem like very many, but I would hardly call that a "hellhole" nor "horrifying". Unpleasant, yes. inconvenient, yes. Horrifying, not so much.

According to the DailyNews story, "Sister Megan is incredibly serene despite the horrifying conditions that are impossible to comprehend in America in 2015." The nun does appear "incredibly serene" in her photo to the left, probably because she doesn't find the prison nearly as "horrifying" as the reporter.

In the NPR story, we're told that Sister Rice is being held in 'unfair' conditions. Like most stories as told by Progressives, the operative word here is 'unfair'.

Again, I'd say, unpleasant, yes. inconvenient, yes. Unfair, not so much.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Mummified Monk , "Not Dead".

I reported, in a post from Dec. 16, 2014, of spiritual guru Ashutosh Maharaj, founder and head of the Divya Jyoti Jagrati Sansthan, who suffered a heart attack and was declared clinically dead by a team of doctors on January 29, 2014.

Many of his followers, however, believe Ashutosh Maharaj to be in a state of deep meditation (samadhi) and won a court battle in Decemeber, 2014, delaying his cremation until February 9, 2015.

As I write this, we are still 3 days away from the latest cremation date. So far, no new news to report on that.

However, I've learned today, from a report on the Siberian Times website, of a 200 years old mummified monk found in the lotus position on January 27 in the Songinokhairkhan province of Mongolia. Ganhugiyn Purevbata, who is the founder and professor of the Mongolian Institute of Buddhist Art at Ulaanbaatar Buddhist University, said:

'Lama is sitting in the lotus position vajra, the left hand is opened, and the right hand symbolizes of the preaching Sutra.

'This is a sign that the Lama is not dead, but is in a very deep meditation according to the ancient tradition of Buddhist lamas'.

Looks as if we could do with an updated Monty Python sketch.

POTUSBO Speaks of 'Terrible Deeds in the Name of Christ'.

I realize that for many news websites, it's all about the lede. You have to grab the readers with a flashy headline. I'm not saying that Drudge is worse than any of the others, but I do sometimes want to check the fine print whenever the website features a headline about POTUSBO.

So, when I read the recent lede on Drudge, "Terrible Deeds in the Name of Christ", along with the photo of POTUSBO, I had to click the link.

Mission accomplished, Drudge.

The AP story began,
"President Barack Obama on Thursday condemned those who seek to use religion as a rationale for carrying out violence around the world, declaring that 'no god condones terror'."

One would think that His Majesty was referring to those who terrorize in the name of Islam. Not so.

" 'Unless we get on our high horse and think that this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ,' Obama said. 'In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ'."

First of all, I won't even go into how, far too many people today, POTUSBO does not an accurate understanding of either the Crusades or the Spanish Inquisition. Most of what he believes happened comes from the anti-Catholic bias of English speaking historians.

Be that as it may, even if those two events happened as the President believes, the Spanish Inquisition was 500 years ago, while last major medieval Crusade to the Holy Land was in 1272.

I think it's a safe bet that Christianity has "evolved" since then.

Even his references to slavery and Jim Crow are more than a bit dated. ISIS is today. Let's not compare the present sins of ISIS with the past sins of some Christians. Is this the best the President can do?


Catholic League President Bill Donohue said Mr. Obama should apologize for “an attempt to deflect guilt from Muslim madmen.” He said the president’s comparisons of modern-day terrorism to the Crusades and the Inquisition were “insulting” to Christians.

“Obama’s ignorance is astounding, and his comparison is pernicious,” Mr. Donohue said. “The Crusades were a defensive Christian reaction against Muslim madmen of the Middle Ages.”

Super Bowl Sunday in Seattle.

I'm going to resist the urge to be snarky with this post.

Last Sunday was, as we all know, "Super-bowl Sunday" in the United States. At Mass in one of the parishes in Seattle, the Priest held his own particular type of service.

As reported by Church Militant.TV.

Catholic blogger, Mark Shea lives in Washington State and is a self proclaimed Seattle Seahawks fan so we can be certain that he is aware of this.

I've been looking for a comment on this Mass on Mr. Shea's blog, but I haven't seen one.

I sent an email to him asking for a comment. As I said, I've resisted the urge to be snarky. I simply sent a link to the above video with the question, "Any comment on this?"

We'll see.


I've received a reply to my email to Mr Shea. His blog "Adheres to the Welborn Protocol", so in this case, I will as well.

Where would Church Militant be without something to gin up rage about every week?

Re: the sanctuary. It was stupid. My guess is the priest has already heard from Abp Sartain about it. I'm told his rationale is that the community is still recovering from a school shooting that happened at Marysville High last October. I tend to never attribute to malice what can be sufficiently explained by stupidity. Voris' tendency is to latch on to even completely innocent people and use them as human punching bags for the delectation of his cult of personality. Anger porn is porn.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Rand Paul Gets Hepatitis A Booster Shot.

In an effort to show that he is not an anti-vaxxer, Republican Senator Rand Paul found a reporter to accompany him while he received a booster shot for Hepatitis A at the Capitol physician’s office.

According to, in spite of having said earlier that he was aware of “many tragic cases of walking, talking normal children who wound up with profound mental disorders after vaccines,” the Senator wants to make it known that, “It just annoys me that I’m being characterized as someone who’s against vaccines.”

That's good to know.

Finding Darwin's God.

Pat Archbold, one half of Creative Minority Report, recently wrote an opinion piece for Nation Catholic Register, entitled "They Call Them Theories For A Reason", where he discusses the Church's response or responses to "the origins of the universe, the origins of life on earth, or any other in vogue unproven theory".

Generally, I enjoy reading anything written by either of the Archbold brothers, but perhaps Pat should refrain from writing on "the origins of the universe, the origins of life on earth, or any other in vogue unproven theory" as well.

One person leaving comments on the post recommended we read a book written by Kenneth R Miller - Finding Darwin's God. I'm in the middle of the book and I'd like to recommend it to anyone interested in the subject of God and evolution.

Kenneth Raymond Miller is an American cell biologist and molecular biologist who is currently Professor of Biology and Royce Family Professor for Teaching Excellence at Brown University (Wikipedia) and a Roman Catholic. Miller does a fairly good job arguing that an acceptance of evolution is compatible with a belief in God. I must admit that portions of Miller's book go way over my head, but the fault is mine, not Miller's.

Miller's book isn't was originally published in 2000. That same year, was reviewed by the now late Henry Morris, founder of the Institute for Creation Science. Needless to say, Morris did not agree with Miller's defense of evolution. Morris, an Independent Baptist is critical of Miller because he (Miller) does not mention Jesus Christ in his book. The fact that Miller is a Catholic who repeatedly professes belief in God, is not good enough for Morris.

In 1996, Morris published an article on the Institute for Creation Science website, slamming what he called "public papal evolutionism" in general and Popes Pius XII and John Paul II in particular. I can't think of a greater compliment than to be put into the same category those two Popes.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Vaccine Debate

The reports that Republicans Sen. Rand Paul and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie have been giving the wink to anti vaxxers is more than a bit troubling. Although both potential Presidential candidates have admitted to having had their own children vaccinated, both believe the decision to vaccinate should be left entirely up to the parents.

Sadly, the Republicans have a reputation as the anti-science Party. I'm beginning to believe that reputation is well deserved. The fact that 34% of Democrats believe that God created Humans less than 10,000 years ago  makes little difference. 52% of Republicans believe the same.

Far too many Americans deny any possibility of climate change and/or evolution. Now we can add the growing number of Americans who reject the science behind vaccination.

Slate writer Jamelle Bouie has his own theory as to how we can "encourage" parents to vaccinate their children.


I agree that in the interest of the health of the child and the general public, all children should be vaccinated, but I can't agree with Bouie's approach. I'm not sure he would either if he thought through the problem. He writes, "Like any affiliation, anti-vaccination beliefs become stronger when attacked by outsiders".

Yet that is exactly what he recommends.I can just imagine how these ant-vaxxers would react to coercion.

They'd probably elect candidates like Chris Christie and Rand Paul.

Monday, February 2, 2015

More Random Thoughts on Pope Francis and Climate Change.

The latest news in the ever evolving controversy of Pope Francis and climate change are the stories that United States EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy has met with senior Vatican officials in an effort to obtain papal support for the Obama administration's environmental policies.

As seen in the screen shot on the left, obviously believes the story is worth quite a few links.

For those unfamiliar with, it is the traditional Catholic's Drudge Report.

Many of those commenting on the story at creativeminorityreport are none too happy with the news.

Dr B wrote; "Pray that the antichrists don't lead the apparent Vicar of Christ and his minions to a false god. God, Please help your church."

MIKE says;"Catholics do not need to pay any attention to the Pope except on matters of Faith and Morals."

Paul Ben accuses Pope Francis of having "illusions of grandiosity".

It matters not that Benedict XVI spoke out against man's destruction of the environment. In the view of many American conservatives, Pope Francis is the enemy.

One of the arguments against the environmental movement is that it has become the latest incarnation of paganism. The sad truth is that many environmentalist today worship the planet, Gaia, and Mother Nature.

Instead of focusing of the "kooks" we need to stay focused on the evidence. It isn't productive to lump together all who support the environment with the neo-pagans. To view all environmentalists as the same would be comparable to claiming that all Christians agree that the planet is only about 6000 years old. To deny climate change because of the neo-pagans is no different than denying the existence of God because a minority of Christians are Creationists.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Scientists - General Public - Disagree on GM food Safety.

A recent poll by the Pew Research Center reveals that members of the general public have differing views, regarding questions on "science", from members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

As reported by Cary Funk and Lee Rainie, "there are particularly stark differences across the board in these surveys". The survey covers the hot button issues of global warming, childhood vaccines and evolution, but the largest differences are found in the opinions about the safety of eating genetically modified (GM) foods.

Accordingly, 88% of AAAS members believe that GM foods are generally safe to eat. Only 37% of U.S. adults are of the same opinion.

One gets the impression from the article that the average American adult is ignorant regarding science. That may, or may not be true, but the question regarding genetically modified foods doesn't get any clearly when we have articles, like this one from that claim "there is no 'Scientific Consensus' on the safety of genetically modified organisms (GMO)".

The GlobalResearch article links to a statement signed by over 300 scientists and legal experts to the effect that there is “No consensus” on the safety of genetically modified (GM) crops and foods that has now been published in a peer-reviewed open access journal, Environmental Sciences Europe.

So, are GM foods safe?

We get this from the World Health Organisation (WHO)

Different GM organisms include different genes inserted in different ways. This means that individual GM foods and their safety should be assessed on a case-by-case basis and that it is not possible to make general statements on the safety of all GM foods.

GM foods currently available on the international market have passed safety assessments and are not likely to present risks for human health. In addition, no effects on human health have been shown as a result of the consumption of such foods by the general population in the countries where they have been approved. Continuous application of safety assessments based on the
Codex Alimentarius principles and, where appropriate, adequate post market monitoring, should form the basis for ensuring the safety of GM foods.

One of the more interesting comments on GM foods comes from Cardinal Peter Turkson ,who generally favors GM foods:

“The world's food security challenges are not to be overcome with a referendum on science.” “…The Church is not anti-science. Nor do we wish to promote a referendum on technology or biotechnology.”

Hello Cedartown.

Hello Cedartown. I'm so glad you took time out of your busy schedule to visit my blog.

As soon as I read the insulting comment on my blog, I knew at once that it could only be you. I went to Google Analytics and checked my stats, and sure enough, I had a visitor from Cedartown.

It's ironic. You tell me to "Get a life"; but yet, you are half a world away and still feel the need to insult and harass me.

Again, I want to thank you for stopping by. I hope you have a good day.