Seven Whooping Coughs for Seven Brothers

April 15, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

Our boss Ron Lindsay addresses the practice of evaluating teacher performance based on students' test scores, "a policy not based on science, but rather politics and deceptive intuitions." 

Also at the Free Thinking blog, CFI-UK director Stephen Law does a deep dive into concepts of happiness and how (or whether) it motivates our behavior. Me, I'm mostly motivated by anxiety. But you should also read Jennifer Michael Hecht's The Happiness Myth. I need to read it again, because it's gangbusters.

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Walter Peck, Forgotten Hero

April 14, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

A very different and fun episode of Point of Inquiry is out, where Josh Zepps interviews both Bassem Youssef ("the Egyptian Jon Stewart") and comedian Ahmed Ahmed together. 

Speaking of Point of Inquiry, we've now got two special episodes up relating to the Reason for Change conference in June, with Phil Zuckerman and Leighann Lord. I assume you're making your plans? Register now! 

The Curiosity rover discovers that Mars is briny. There is honest to goodness liquid water beneath the surface!

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Prayerfunding on Kneelstarter

April 13, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

We've got more people to kick around for the 2016 presidential race. Hillary Clinton announced yesterday with a pretty smart video, and RNS has some tidbits on her relationship with religion. Marco Rubio is probably announcing later today, and RNS has a tip sheet on how his faith contains multitides: Catholic, Mormon, Baptist, and who knows what else. 

We've also got Republican-turned-independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee, who Philip Eil I think unfairly calls the "weirdest" candidate (I assume he's aware of Ted "Three Toddlers Stacked" Cruz). I'd just say he's one of the less charasmatic. Anyway, he's good on church-state separation stuff.

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Squeezing into Increasingly Smaller Gaps

April 10, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

I broke a lamp in the new house that my wife really likes, which is why the Heresy is late today. You all, my wonderful wife especially, have my apologies.

Also, the college play I'm directing opens tonight, and I'm 99% certain none of them read or even know about this blog, but I will take this opportunity nonetheless to tell them that I'm so freaking proud of them, and they're going to kick a lot of theatrical ass tonight. 

Soooooo anything else interesting going on no okay let's get on with the links.

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Sporadic Bursts of Happiness and Misery

April 09, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

It's April 9 and it's snowing here in Maine. Not only is global warming a hoax, but aliens are also controlling the lizard people in the White House who engineered 9/11 and have duped us all about it through the use of chemtrails. 

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is found guilty of the Boston Marathon bombing. 

In Malawi the police have been given orders to shoot anyone attacking albinos. Why are people attacking albinos? Glad you asked. Their body parts are used in black magic, you see. Also, the year is apparently 600 AD in Malawi.

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Welcome Back, Brontosaurus

April 08, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

Where's the Heresy been? Well, your Morning Heretic was off for a couple of days to move into a new house, and it took some doing. But I'm back. What'd I miss?

More importantly, what'd you miss? Check out last week's Cause & Effect newsletter to see what CFI has been up to.

Here's a thing: Rand Paul announced his candidacy for president. Kimberly Winston has a good set of bullet points on Paul's confusing relationship with religion

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Not So Fast, Nones

April 03, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

The U.S. and Iran reach a deal on Iran's nuclear program. Catch up on the background of this decades-long conflict with our Point of Inquiry episode with David Crist.  

Bill Nye and Bon Jovi will be doing Rutgers commencements, and I just like that this piece associates Nye with the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry right up front. Bon Jovi, please return my calls.

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It May Be Legal, But it Ain’t Right

April 02, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

Arkansas passes its own Indiana-style right-to-discriminate bill, but GOP governor Asa Hutchinson refuses to sign, thanks it part to pressure from businesses like Wal-Mart, and even NASCAR. Whoa, NASCAR? Even God is surprised by that one:

"NASCAR Decries Indiana Anti-Gay Law". And when NASCAR calls you homophobic, you are homo-friggin'-phobic. 

David Letterman, a native Hoosier, can't even believe how backward the RFRA law is. “It may be legal, but it ain’t right.”

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Cruel Hearts, Arrogant Souls, and Warped Logic

April 01, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

I've been practicing rolling my eyes and making indignant, above-it-all faces just to get through today, April Fools' Day, when the whole Internet thinks every absurd lie is hilarious and totally worth your time. I'm ready!! But here's a promise: This is an April Fools'-free Morning Heresy.

Kimberly Winston reports on the reaction to the murder of yet another Bangladeshi atheist blogger, Washiqur Rahman, including our statement and response from Asif Mohiuddin, who knew Rahman personally.

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A Lived-in Face

March 31, 2015

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

Today the U.S. and Iran are expected to announce a deal on Iran's nuclear program. Just in time, Point of Inquiry has a guest with deep expertise on the U.S.'s 30-year conflict with Iran: Senior Historian for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, David Crist. Don't miss it. 

The Indiana right-to-discriminate fallout continues. For example, Wilco cancels its tour in Indiana. Garrett Epps at The Atlantic spells out why this particular version of RFRA is so problematic, as opposed to the federal counterpart. Some lawmakers begin to scramble to "clarify" the law (good luck). Arkansas and North Carolina are perhaps the next to adopt this kind of measure.

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