The Morning Heresy 10/17/12: D’Souza? D’oh!

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
October 17, 2012

Your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities. 

Takeaways from last night's debate? Not a whole lot for our skepto-atheosphere. Most notable, really, is what wasn't said. Not once was there discussion of things near and dear to our hearts like, oh, the global rise in temperatures that may result in the destruction of human habitats and spur a series of environmental catastrophes. But hey, they both like coal!   

Baptist Press trumpets an effort by lawmakers in nine states to form "religious freedom caucuses," which of course means essentially the opposite of what it says. The piece quotes CFI chief Ron Lindsay:

Unfortunately, 'freedom of conscience' and 'religious liberty' are sometimes improperly invoked by those who seek to impose their religious views on others, directly or indirectly. Whether the American Religious Freedom Program will help strengthen the right to freedom of conscience or subvert this right largely depends on the understanding of religious liberty that will guide its activity.  

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Some Curious GOP Campaign Literature

No Faith Value with Ronald A. Lindsay
October 16, 2012

It’s presidential campaign season and I’ve received some literature from the Romney campaign that I find curious for a couple of reasons.

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Center for Inquiry Issues New Position Paper on School Vouchers

Democratic Discourse with Michael De Dora
October 16, 2012

The Center for Inquiry's Office of Public Policy has released a new position paper critical of school voucher programs that divert taxpayer dollars from the public education system to private and religious schools. 

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The Morning Heresy 10/16/12: He Breaks Things

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
October 16, 2012

Your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities. 

Rebecca Watson one-ups Newsweek:

But last night, after seven hours of rest during which the human part of my brain (i.e., all of it) showed significantly slowed brainwave patterns, I experienced something so profound that it gave me a scientific reason to believe in Narnia. 

CFI's Michael De Dora talks with Jamila Bey on Voice of Russia Radio about blasphemy and incitement laws around the world. 

NBC Nightly News does the first in a series of pieces on alternative medicine -- it's highly uncritical, and even says that insurance companies need to do some "catching up" to cover CAM treatments. 

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What the World Needs Most is Critical Inquiry

It’s Only Natural with John Shook
October 15, 2012

And the Center for Inquiry is always at the forefront of advancing reason!

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The Morning Heresy 10/15/12: Some of Us Were Blushing

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
October 15, 2012

Your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities. 

As Election Day approaches, it's not the presidential race that has the exclusive attention of the Florida political class. It's "Amendment 8," a proposed change to the state constitution to allow taxpayer funds to flow to religious institutions -- and a reaction to a lawsuit brought by the Council for Secular Humanism concerning a proselytizing prison ministry.   

A piece by Robyn Blumner in the Tampa Bay Times quotes CFI legal guru Steven Fox on the implications of the amendment, and Blumner concludes that its passage would mean:

. . . proselytizing by the likes of the Lamb of God Ministries, the local mosque or Scientology center, and, heck, even the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster could become just another government-funded program, with all of us compelled to foot the bill. 

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The Morning Heresy 10/12/12: Release the Biden!

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
October 12, 2012

Your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities. 

I enjoyed the hell out of last night's debate, my friend. And yes, there was even fodder for the Heresy, as Joe articulated the whole point of secularism in a religiously pluralistic society:

My religion defines who I am. And I’ve been a practicing Catholic my whole life. . . With regard to — with regard to abortion, I accept my church’s position on abortion as a — what we call de fide. Life begins at conception. That’s the church’s judgment. I accept it in my personal life. But I refuse to impose it on equally devout Christians and Muslims and Jews and — I just refuse to impose that on others, unlike my friend here, the congressman. 

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Rare Spiritualists Photo Discovered

Investigative Briefs with Joe Nickell
October 11, 2012

I often spend weekends searching area antique stores and malls for treasures for my paranormal and pseudoscience collection (a small amount of which is online at www.skeptiseum.org). So it was that I came across the old stereoscopic card pictured here. (Placed in an antique viewer called a stereoscope—one of which is included in my collection—such a double picture appears in 3-D.)

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The Morning Heresy 10/11/12: Ladybugs’ Picnic Day

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
October 11, 2012

Your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities. 

I declare today Ladybugs' Picnic Day. Why? Sing it with me!

One-two-three, four-five-six, seven-eight-nine...(and today's date!) 10-11-12!!! Get it???

Sunshine State News chronicles the tit for tat over Florida's Amendment 8, which would allow state money to fund religious institutions, and is a reaction to the Council for Secular Humanism's lawsuit against the funding of proselytizing prison programs in the state. So obviously, we're against it

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The Morning Heresy 10/10/12: Unaffiliate This!

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
October 10, 2012

Your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities. 

Holy moly, did the media get excited about the rise of the so-called "nones" yesterday! Honestly, the new numbers from Pew showing that a fifth of Americans eschew religious affiliation surprised almost everyone. In a press release yesterday, our boss Ron Lindsay talked about how this bodes well for policy and culture in the long run as religion loses ever more of its influence.

CNN's The Situation Room checked in with Ron to talk about the political implications of this new data. 

ABC News picks up our release, and includes some political implications, including the possible election to the US Congress of Arizona nontheist Krysten Sinema.

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