Blog Archives for June 2012

The Morning Heresy 6/29/12: If We Do Not Destroy Ourselves

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 28, 2012

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

We're putting it in writing. Today CFI announced the introduction of a new policy on hostile conduct and harassment at conferences. CFI's President and CEO Ron Lindsay has published two blog posts on the topic: a short-and-sweet summation of the policy and its reasoning, and a "tl;dr" version that goes into much more detail. 

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The Morning Heresy 6/28/12: Platitudinous Syrup

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 27, 2012

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

The personal papers of Carl Sagan will have a new home: The Library of Congress

Ron Bailey writes in Reason magazine about the continuing deep distrust for atheists in the U.S.

The Morning Heresy 6/27/12: Babbling Prophecy

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 27, 2012

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

There's a lot to cover today, folks. I hope your computer has the RAM to handle all the browser tabs you're about to open.

The Morning Heresy 6/26/12: The Bloody Sword of Spain

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 26, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Shall we begin with some horn-tooting? Yes, I think we shall. 

Ed Brayton, whose set before Jamie Kilstein had me guffawing at an embarrassing volume, calls the CFI Leadership Conference "a great weekend in every way." Ophelia hears all the good responses about the event, and concludes "CFI goes from strength to strength. Noticed that?"

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The Morning Heresy 6/25/12: Invisible Yo-Yo!

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 25, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Well, everyone is exhausted from the CFI Leadership Conference, but it's a good exhausted. The days were absolutely packed with impactful and practical talks and workshops for both freethinking students and CFI's branch leaders. Just off the top of my head, CFI's own Debbie Goddard blew my mind with her moving retelling of her own journey to secular activism, Deisree Schell's workshop clarified my own thinking on campaign organization like nothing I've yet seen, and Chris Mooney's explanation of this Republican Brain thesis was utterly compelling, making me rethink many prejudices I have of both conservatives and liberals. There were several others (truly) that fully impressed me, and I hope both I and others find the time to more thoroughly digest and synthesize it all. Luckily, videos are coming soon.

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The Morning Heresy 6/22/12: Gigantic Money Pit

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 22, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

The first half-day of the Student Leadership Conference is in the can, and everyone's already exhausted. Somehow my hotel room was never booked, so there was some scrambling late last night until I found lodging, as most rooms in the area were already filled. Yes, there was in fact no room at the inn.

But I'll live. In the meantime, make sure you're following the action on Twitter at #CFIcon.

The Morning Heresy 6/21/12: The Baptist Convention Formerly Known as Southern

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 21, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Here I am once again in the Portland Jetport (that's Portland, Maine, you crunchy Oregonian elitists!), on the way to the The Most Important Event of All Time Times Eleventy Billion, the CFI Student Leadership Conference in Amherst, NY. I'm trying to scratch together another edition of the Heresy from my iPad, which, I don't mind telling you, is a little harder to do than with a laptop. I do most of my CFI-ing from my desktop Mac at home, so I am constantly looking for the most efficient workarounds for getting the job done on the road without a full-fledged "computer." Anyway, time is short as I hop from airport to airport, so let's see what I can scrounge together for my tens and tens of readers.

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The Morning Heresy 6/20/12: The Kids and Their Jungle Music

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 20, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

I'm completely stressed out about the CFI Student Leadership Conference this weekend. I'm giving a presentation (tentatively titled "Super-Awesome PR Pro-Tips That Will Help You Become Famous and Lose Weight!" -- But that's only if Lauren Becker will let me keep it that way), I'm going to meet lots of important folks from the secular and skeptic movements who are sure to make me very nervous, and of course, I have to find some way to pass myself off as modern and relevant to all the young people who are into that loud jungle music with all those words that you can't even understand and why don't they get haircuts and jobs? It may be more than I can handle.

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The Morning Heresy 6/19/12: The Best Possible Time to Be Alive

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 19, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Yesterday, CFI organized a protest outside the Indonesian Embassy to demand the release and exoneration of Alexander Aan, beaten by a mob and convicted of "spreading religious hatred" via his atheism and satirical Facebook posts. Our boss Ron Lindsay reports that the folks within the embassy were definitely paying attention (how often does their embassy get protests?) so we at least know that our message was heard. Here are some pics, and our thanks to those who helped spread the word.

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The Morning Heresy 6/18/12: Let’s Get it Aan

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 18, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Over the weekend, CFI roundly condemned the blasphemy conviction of atheist Alexander Aan in Indonesia, and is organizing a protest for his freedom outside the Indonesian embassy in Washington at 2pm. Details are here. If you're in the area, show the Indonesian authorities -- and Alex -- that we demand his freedom, and that we are paying attention.

The Morning Heresy 6/14/12: Therefore it’s Not Happening

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 13, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Quick note: I'm dragging my kid to see family this weekend, so there will probably not be a Morning Heresy tomorrow (Friday). But don't worry, nothing interesting will happen.  

Media outlets are abuzz over recent Pew data that shows millennials belief in God dropping pretty quickly...

The Morning Heresy 6/13/12: The Most Disdained Group of All

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 13, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

There's some religious ugliness in the news today, folks, so if you're looking to start your day with smoke coming out your ears, you've come to the right place. But let's start with some very good news!

North Dakota's "Measure 3," which would have allowed religious belief as an excuse to avoid compliance with all kinds of laws, and which CFI urged voters to oppose, was defeated yesterday! Roundly defeated, even, 64% to 36%.

The Morning Heresy 6/12/12: A Single Menacing Blur

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

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

CFI chief Ron Lindsay blogs about balls. Okay, get it out of your system. Now. Once you're done tittering about it, read the thing, because there's an important message:

Language is powerful. Language not only expresses our thoughts, it shapes them. “Balls” is in common use, and that’s precisely part of the problem. It’s embedded so much in our language that we don’t notice it, but that simply means our sexism is burrowed in deep. 

The Morning Heresy 6/11/12: Worse than Useless

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

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Must-read for science-loving secu-skepties at the New Yorker: Why the hell do we have so much trouble accepting science? Un-learning:

. . . science education is not simply a matter of learning new theories. Rather, it also requires that students unlearn their instincts, shedding false beliefs the way a snake sheds its old skin.

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The Morning Heresy 6/8/12: The Garden of Your Mind

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 08, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

First things: Kylie Sturgess posts your must-view video of the day, a love note to all the trolls and haters out there. Now, it's NSFW, but it's delightful and you need it running through your head as your go about your day. So if you're at the office, put on some headphones and maybe crouch really close to your display. Ready? Aaaaaaaaand CLICK!

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The Morning Heresy 6/7/12: Meme Abuse

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 07, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Now look. I know there is a lot of debate going on in the skepto-atheosphere, much of it very necessary (and some of it very much not). And that's fine. That's what we do. We make assertions, we question, we argue, and sometimes things get heated or personal. It's hard to avoid, because as rational as we aspire to be, we are still human. But to my mind, one aspect of all this arguing (much of it going on within the Freethought Blogs network, much of it on Twitter) has crossed a line. A dangerous one. 

4 Comments

The Morning Heresy 6/6/12: No Archaeopteryx Allowed

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 06, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

So last night was interesting. Both in orbit around the Sun and in the voting booths of Wisconsin, two entirely predictable things happened that were also kind of stunning. Greg Laden is hopping mad about one of them (the one not about Earth's sister planet), and Kylie Sturgess was hopping excited about the other (the one not about union-related political tumult).

The Morning Heresy 6/5/12: Damn You, Sling King

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 05, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Our spies on the ground in Indiana tell us that the weapon used to deface our billboard may have been this ridiculous contraption, the Sling King

Will Gervais talks about his research on the relationship between (the lack of) critical thinking and religiosity on the latest Point of Inquiry

The Morning Heresy 6/4/12: So-Called Paintball Experts

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 04, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

Ed Brayton speaks on behalf of CFI-Michigan against hospital's use of homeopathic and other nonscientific treatments 

Local news coverage (paywalled) on the CFI-Indiana billboard vandalism reports...

The Morning Heresy 6/1/12: Jen McCreight, Call Your Lawyer

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 01, 2012

Your daily digest of relevant news and links from Paul Fidalgo

The Religious Congregations & Membership Study looks at which states are the "most Christian," and the award goes to Utah (if you count Mormons and UUs who self-identify as Christian). Least Christian? Why, that'd be my adopted home, Maine!