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Comments by Vendetta

Go to: The BBC announces a major season marking the life and work of Charles Darwin

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 30 by Vendetta

One of the worst things about living in the US is that we don't get all of these BBC channels and programs. Are there any fellow Americans here who know where/how to catch these programs? Or are we stuck waiting for it to come out on dvd and buying it?

We might not get BBC, but we do get Fox News, so that's a comfort. laksjdfl;kjaweifjaowiefnmaweflkn

Fri, 11 Jul 2008 08:40:00 UTC | #198157

Go to: Susskind Quashes Hawking in Quarrel Over Quantum Quandary

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 57 by Vendetta

I've always been puzzled by black holes and what people imagine happens at the event horizon. The explanation I've seen most often is that time slows down as you approach the event horizon, and seems to stop at the actual threshold. So as something drifts towards the border and crosses it, would there be a freeze frame image of the object forever frozen there, or would it disappear suddenly? I thought Hawking and some textbook explanations said if we watched an astronaut cross the event horizon he would unknowingly leave a final frozen image of himself at the border even while he kept drifting towards the center. Anything that happens after crossing would be invisible to us on the outside because the information would be trapped on the other side of the horizon by gravity. Then he would be 'spaghettified' lol.

I don't see how that explanation is possible since black holes wouldn't be black at all, but would instead have impossibly bright event horizons, final frozen images of all the stars and energy that it's consumed as they passed the event horizon. Am I misunderstanding all of this?

Fri, 11 Jul 2008 08:32:00 UTC | #198147

Go to: Bacteria make major evolutionary shift in the lab

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 3 by Vendetta

Ya, but we all know that micro-evolution is fine but macro-evolution is a lie, right? Lol. Religious nutters.

Tue, 10 Jun 2008 05:53:00 UTC | #181531

Go to: An Atheist Goes Undercover to Join the Flock of Mad Pastor John Hagee

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 100 by Vendetta

OMG, how could he have told the story of his 'wound' with a straight face? I mean, seriously... that would take a level of self control that I can only imagine.

Fri, 09 May 2008 08:17:00 UTC | #168451

Go to: An Atheist Goes Undercover to Join the Flock of Mad Pastor John Hagee

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 20 by Vendetta

Wow. That was some read. I really like Matt's writing. I've never read anything of his before, I've only seen him do the political reporting on Real Time w/Bill Maher.

Wed, 07 May 2008 15:02:00 UTC | #167561

Go to: Stop revisionist Christian nation House Resolution 888

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 124 by Vendetta

Great letter William Kaiser, I 'borrowed' most of it in my letter to my congressman, hope you don't mind. :)

Fri, 25 Jan 2008 09:54:00 UTC | #110540

Go to: Stop revisionist Christian nation House Resolution 888

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 105 by Vendetta

What, no more psychotic posts from Summer Seale? I'd love to see her responses to the questions that have been asked. Personally I would like to know if we should go ahead and torture and kill every muslim in the US, since they are "potential terrorists". And if so, why stop there? I am an atheist, so presumably I might be spared from her jihad against muslims, but perhaps we should just rid the world of all religious people, since they are all potentially dangerous?

Her entire stance ignores the glaring fact that because of this presidents power grab, any US citizen can be grabbed off the street and locked away forever and tortured without trial as long as they are accused of being an enemy combatant.

Tue, 22 Jan 2008 15:58:00 UTC | #109283

Go to: Science, Evolution, and Creationism

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 106 by Vendetta

Some silly religious apologist recently wrote a letter to the editor bashing evolution as only a theory and therefore we shouldn't accept it. I couldn't resist responding, here's my response letter (it's 250 words, which is the limit):


Most people think the word "theory" means educated guess, so it's no wonder that many are hesitant to believe in the "theory" of evolution. In the scientific community, however, an educated guess is called a hypothesis. A hypothesis must survive rigorous scrutiny, predictions, and experiments before it can become a "theory."
There is overwhelming evidence supporting the theory of evolution in many different fields. As a result of this massive evidence scientists debate how evolution happened, not if. If evidence that disproved evolution appeared, scientists would be forced to change or abandon the theory altogether.
The National Academy of Sciences just released a report on evolution. If you have internet access, you can read it for free at www.nap.edu If you are pressed for time be sure to at least read the FAQ section.
Mr. Wareham JR (the person this letter responds to) said that if evolution were in court it would be dismissed for lack of evidence. Perhaps he missed the Intelligent Design (ID) case in Dover (2005). ID advocates lost because ID was found to be an attempt to insert religion into public schools. The evolution advocates displayed why the theory of evolution is the best explanation we currently have for the diversity of life we see around us, and the evidence was impressive. The decision was made by Judge Jones, a republican appointed by George W. Bush in 2002.
If you don't "believe" in evolution, be sure to avoid flu shots, which rely on the germ "theory" of disease and predicting evolving strains.


I just got a call from the newspaper, they were very happy with my letter and are putting it in asap. :) The fight continues...

Fri, 18 Jan 2008 10:32:00 UTC | #107632

Go to: Carl Sagan's COSMOS begins airing on Jan 8th

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 37 by Vendetta

I went to the website and yes, unfortunately, the science channel is different than the discovery channel that most people have with their basic cable channel. I suspect I would have to contact my local cable provider to find out how I could get this channel.

Poopies. Just looking at the programs showing on the science channel, it's a shame that this isn't part of the mandatory cable packages. Much more important for the shop at home channels and fox news to be included. Sad.

Wed, 02 Jan 2008 10:39:00 UTC | #101087

Go to: This Is Not a Test

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 50 by Vendetta

44. Comment #100077 by Rtambree on December 18, 2007 at 8:07 am

Nader "gave" Bush the White House? Pardon?
Gore gave Bush the Whitehouse for being a doormat after the debacle in Florida. He didn't contest it - he had a backbone of jelly. Gore couldn't even hold onto his own state of Tennessee - nothing to do with Nader. All Gore had to do was win his own goddamn state.

Nader is good for American politics - he highlights the Two Party Debate duopoly, corporate welfare, tax cuts for the wealthy, the lack of universal public health, excessive military spending, and he doesn't thump any Bibles. Why shouldn't there be a third voice (and fourth, fifth, etc)?


Until the current system of voting in the US is changed to an instant runoff type system
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting)then yes, 3rd party candidates are always going to be "spoilers" like Perot (which helped Clinton) and Nader (which helped W).

It's true that Gore had issues like losing his home state, but it is also true that if Nader had chosen not to run, 90 - 95% of the Nader votes would have gone to Gore and he would have won the election.

As much as I admire many of Nader's views, it's idiotic to pretend that he didn't deliver the 2000 election to W. The lesser of two evils (Gore) is still the lesser of two evils. Nader took a principled stand which gave the world the greater of two evils (W). Congratulations, Ralph.

He could have put out his strong 3rd party views to try to correct Gore's conservative stances and then just not run in the general election.

How "honorable" is it to stubbornly stay in the race to take a stand on principle, knowing that your principles will likely deliver the worst president in history into the white house? Have you enjoyed the last 7 years? Thank Ralph Nader.

Wed, 19 Dec 2007 08:24:00 UTC | #96110

Go to: ...and another FLEA...

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 15 by Vendetta

14. Comment #96352 by Diacanu on December 10, 2007 at 12:36 pm

Still no Hitchens fleas!

Come on people, get your shit together!

Get "God is SO great!: Why religion cures everything", out on the shelves already.

Lazy bums! Type faster!
All you gotta do is "Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot! Pascal's wager! Fine tuned constants! Did I mention Stalin!?", and wrap a cover around it.


You saw it here, folks. When this book actually does come out, we're all witnesses that Diacanu was pledgerized. Let the royalties come in!

Mon, 10 Dec 2007 12:40:00 UTC | #91912

Go to: Beyond Belief 07: Enlightenment 2.0

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 98 by Vendetta

Okay, so I've only watched about the first 3 or 4 hours, but I'm sorry, so far this is no where as good as last year's conference. The two talks on the enlightenment (a poor choice to start the conference with) were varying degrees of boring, and the born again economist with the speech impediment was even worse. I wouldn't want to skip ahead to parts that I know would be interesting because to me that would be too much like skipping ahead in a book or novel, but wow, so far this isn't in the same league as last year (so far).

I haven't made it to this year's version of Atran yet (I've only had to deal with his pompous attitude in the few questions he's asked) but I don't see how anyone can really defend his attitude. Every time I hear him talk I wonder why he even bothers to condescendingly attend these things when all the other scientists are obviously below him in intellect?(in his own mind)What a bore.

Sat, 08 Dec 2007 08:54:00 UTC | #91022

Go to: Sherri Shepherd needs to go away now

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 71 by Vendetta


50. Comment #94754 by MelM on December 6, 2007 at 1:02 pm

Makes me wonder about what she thinks of the "Earth going around the Sun" idea.


The Earth obviously doesn't go around the Sun. The Earth is flat and the Sun goes over it. Duh.

Maybe we're not giving her enough credit. Maybe she is into books. Maybe she saw the Thomas Friedman book "The World is Flat" and thought this might be a recent scientific discovery.

Fri, 07 Dec 2007 09:21:00 UTC | #90706

Go to: Daniel Dennett Debates Dinesh D'Souza

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 412 by Vendetta

Well, I tried. I made it to vid 9 and then I just couldn't take it any more. To those that soldiered on and watched it all... wow. Dinesh is just too much to take. Why? Well perhaps if I talk like him it will be clearer. DINESH IS JUST TOO MUCH TO TAKE!!!!! I'M SHOUTING BECAUSE I'M RIGHT!!!!

What a fucking spud. He's exhibit A in the case against intelligent design.

Tue, 04 Dec 2007 10:32:00 UTC | #89541

Go to: Boy dies of leukemia after refusing treatment for religious reasons

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 41 by Vendetta

39. Comment #92416 by Rtambree on November 30, 2007 at 1:02 pm

Just speculating on how the theists would rationalize it.


It can be hard to tell when people are being serious sometimes :)

Fri, 30 Nov 2007 13:45:00 UTC | #88166

Go to: Boy dies of leukemia after refusing treatment for religious reasons

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 36 by Vendetta

Comment #92190 by Rtambree on November 30, 2007 at 3:00 am

The Lord was calling young Dennis to be with Him, and who are we to disobey our Father?


I hope you were being facetious.

But if you were actually being serious, then please spare us from your proselytizing. This story is pure tragedy, even worse than the recent UK case, in my opinion. Exhibit A in what's wrong with religion.

Fri, 30 Nov 2007 09:02:00 UTC | #88040

Go to: A third of adults believe God watches over them

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 7 by Vendetta

Comment #87557 by Diacanu:

...Geez, it's like these stories were constructed by child-minded primitives from the bronze age or something.


Methinks you're onto something there, Diacanu.

Mon, 12 Nov 2007 13:12:00 UTC | #83569

Go to: Allan Gregg interviews Richard Dawkins

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 52 by Vendetta

Comment #87296 by Spinoza on November 11, 2007 at 5:18 pm

I am so tired of idiot atheists.

Those of you on this site who idolize Prof. Dawkins to the point of sexual desire, you DO do atheism a disservice by not educating yourself on just why Dawkins omits the things you wonder why he omits.

He is following a LONG tradition of intelligent atheism, one in which he is penultimate, but rests upon solid foundations he must utilize, or risk crumbling. (like a bridge).

Please atheists, learn some philosophy, some very very basic philosophy, or shut up.

(I await the expected lambasting I am going to incur).


Truth is one thing, justification is another.

If a legion of atheists rises up, and only one in 50 of them has any semblance of the justificatory structure of their beliefs (liberal estimate, real number may be much much less, given my experience with atheist groups and this website), then WE (as a group) are no better than the theists, most of whom who only remain so because they are too lazy or jaded to think critically and carefully.

I am not annoyed because I think those whom I referred to as "idiot atheists" are INCAPABLE of becoming justified, it is, rather, that they don't seem to care.

You OUGHT to care.

The answer to "Why are you an atheist?" is not "Because there isn't a God.", the answer ought to be that you were persuaded by good argument (very specific ones) to reject beliefs that have weak or nil justification.

God-belief DOES have weak justification, and the atheists, in virtue of identifying themselves that way, have a duty to both explicate the weak justification for God-belief AND understand what they are logically entitled to conclude from that basis.

Dawkins is well within his boundaries, and his comments about Einstein belie his deep understanding of the problem.

I am worried about the developing and rampant cult-of-personality surrounding "The New Atheists".


Spinoza, maybe you should go see a doctor. I think you may have hurt your arm while patting yourself on the back.

Congratulations on being a philosophy expert, but it's not necessary to be a Spinoza scholar (or a physicist, biologist, philosopher, mathematician, etc) to dismiss fantastic claims. You imply that you are not entitled to be an atheist unless you do become an expert in one of these fields, which is of course ridiculous.

Anyone that wasn't indoctrinated with religion as a child won't have gigantic mental roadblocks to overcome when it comes to questions such as "Does God exist?" If you come to the question untainted, then it is easy to see that the arguments provided for a theistic God's existence are WEAK. Watching Pale Blue Dot is probably enough to refute them.

Oh, and Zaphod answered the question about why RD doesn't always comment on other scientists' comments. It's not because he is following the long tradition of atheism, it is because he knows his place and his field of expertise. He has said as much several times.

Spinoza, it's admirable that you've chosen to spend a large portion of your life studying a brilliant man's work, which enables you to do philosophical battle with theologians. The bad part is that this approach lends weight to the notion that theology even qualifies as an actual subject.

Mon, 12 Nov 2007 09:26:00 UTC | #83508

Go to: Georgia plans service to pray for rain

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 37 by Vendetta

35. Comment #86944 by nancy2001 on November 10, 2007 at 1:46 pm

Sacrificing a goat might work. Better yet, let them sacrifice a Fundie.


Now now, Nancy... Even though the world would be a better place without fundies, the ends don't justify the means. We want to be better than fundies :)

Sat, 10 Nov 2007 14:27:00 UTC | #83008

Go to: Can we at least demand 'Secular Communion'?

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 2 by Vendetta

Norman's line of reasoning...makes this false presupposition that the atheists are incapable of working together with their fellow human beings because they also find fault with their flawed religious beliefs. We can do both! Watch us — where we find common goals, we will work together without a pang of regret; and where we disagree, we will forcefully argue. That's the way our world works. Get used to it.


I agree, PZ. It reminds me of the parable of the sinking ship.

http://www.ishmael.org/Education/Parables/SinkingShip.shtml

Sat, 10 Nov 2007 09:42:00 UTC | #82905

Go to: Georgia plans service to pray for rain

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 29 by Vendetta

As Dennett would say, "yes, thank you, but have you sacrificed a goat?"

Sat, 10 Nov 2007 07:02:00 UTC | #82856

Go to: Pat Robertson Says Giuliani Presidency Appears in Book of Revelation

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 23 by Vendetta

21. Comment #86449 by arogop on November 9, 2007 at 8:54 am

He was right to Demand an apology from Ron Paul. In this day and age it is virtually never right to kill civilians.


Wow, I didn't realize Ron Paul said it was ok to kill civilians. Do you realize how stupid Rudy G's remarks were? How would you answer Ron Paul's question about how would we react to a foreign country building military bases in the US? Bin Laden said our permanent bases in Saudi Arabia were the primary motivation for the 9/11 attack. Gee, do you think our actions might have consequences? Oh, that's right. They just want to kill us for our freedoms, like our dimwit president says.

Rudy was quoted on 9/11 as saying "thank God George Bush is our president". Are you kidding me? Like things would have been just so much worse with a democrat president.

Fri, 09 Nov 2007 14:53:00 UTC | #82630

Go to: Are the 'New Atheists' avoiding the 'real arguments'?

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 17 by Vendetta

Bravo!

Wed, 31 Oct 2007 14:11:00 UTC | #80046

Go to: Eddie Tabash at AAI 07

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 44 by Vendetta

"But maybe this one reason is why we have not progressed very far in the last 250 years. Maybe we need to set high standards of achievement for our leaders. Maybe we need to expect timely results. If we are satisfied with the status quo, then maybe not. I have seen first hand how things like fighting to keep nativity scenes out of the public square distracts us from our goal of being a major cultural force. In this sense, for all of their successes, Tabash and others leaders/activists in the atheist community have let us down."


Chris,

You've made it very clear that even if you agree with what Tabash says, you question his style and effectiveness to the point that you think he is a failure. I wanted to point out that if we've lost ground despite his successes, aren't we still better off than we would have been without him? In other words we should be thankful for every asset we have. Tabash doesn't work for you.. fine. But he CAN reach different types of people that care about church/state separation but would never consider aligning themselves with our heroes.

Tue, 30 Oct 2007 09:48:00 UTC | #79694

Go to: Eddie Tabash at AAI 07

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 25 by Vendetta

I'm sure Tabash's atheist activism pales in comparison to yours, ChrisMcL, your highness.

Wed, 24 Oct 2007 05:53:00 UTC | #77370

Go to: Eddie Tabash at AAI 07

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 8 by Vendetta

Diacanu and Veronique are spot on, I was thinking the same thing as D.

Tue, 23 Oct 2007 14:30:00 UTC | #77202

Go to: Downward, Christian soldier

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 19 by Vendetta

Johnny O, I live in Montana and about a month ago there was a returning soldier that was hit by a truck while stopped at a red light (he was on a motorcycle). I can't imagine how hard that would have been for his fiancee and child to take, especially after returning home safely from such a hell hole, and being killed while doing nothing wrong. It's just so sad and horrible.

Of course people used this as an opportunity to turn to their faith. It makes me nauseous. How can they believe in, much less worship, a God that would do such a thing, and just chalk it up to him working in mysterious ways?

Tue, 23 Oct 2007 07:21:00 UTC | #77118

Go to: Christopher Hitchens at AAI 07

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 90 by Vendetta

Riley, are you still here?

I can't believe you think that Hitchen's challenge is hypocrisy. Oh my god. It is a CHALLENGE. He does not supply a quote because he is not quoting anyone. If someone were to actually respond to the challenge, THEN he could quote them. I don't see what's so hard to understand about this.

Dennis Prager (a religious apologist) has his own 'challenge'. It basically says if you were walking alone at night and came upon a group of men, would you be comforted by the knowledge that they had just left a bible meeting? He asserts that yes, a person should be comforted by that knowledge. He challenges people to deny that. Strangely enough, just like Hitchens, he does not QUOTE anyone. Bizarre. It's because he's issuing a challenge, not quoting atheists. Is he asserting that atheists are running around saying that if you came upon a group of men that you somehow knew were just in a bible study meeting you would be less comforted? Of course not, because Prager is the one framing the argument. He can't quote atheists asserting the negative because no atheists are saying that, just like no christians are claiming what Hitch is challenging them to.

I feel like I'm going in circles here, because I am. But this is such an obvious point that it makes me want to bang my head against the wall.

Sat, 20 Oct 2007 07:41:00 UTC | #76434

Go to: Report on Hindu god Ram withdrawn

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 48 by Vendetta

Do you suppose they realize how silly an "army of monkees" is? Is it another victory for cognitive dissonance?

Wed, 17 Oct 2007 10:17:00 UTC | #75763

Go to: Report on Hindu god Ram withdrawn

Vendetta's Avatar Jump to comment 5 by Vendetta

Okay, my laughing fit has passed. Now I'm crying, because this is just so tragic... if only it were just a joke.

Alkal is right. Imagine what it would be like without all this nonsense.

Mon, 15 Oct 2007 13:22:00 UTC | #75265