Clarifying the Anti-Christ

February 24, 2016

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

So, no kidding, Johnny Depp is going to be at the Reason Rally. If he doesn't sing some Sweeney Todd selections I will be sad.

Larissa MacFarquhar is the guest on Point of Inquiry, talking to Lindsay Beyerstein about attitudes toward those who throw themselves into charity and volunteerism

Joseph Berger at NYT looks at how Bernie Sanders talks about (or doesn't talk about) being Jewish:

Mr. Sanders, those who know him say, exemplifies a distinct strain of Judaism, a secular offshoot at least 150 years old whose adherents in the shtetls of Eastern Europe and the jostling streets of the Lower East Side were socialists, anarchists, radicals and union organizers focused less on observance than on economic justice and repairing a broken world. Indeed, he seems more comfortable speaking about Pope Francis, whose views on income inequality he admires, than about his own religious beliefs. 

"The Pope is the anti-Christ. Do your research." The words of the Trump-supporting New Hampshire state Rep. Susan DeLemus. I chuckled as I read the sentence, "DeLemus also tried to clarify what she meant by saying the Pope is the anti-Christ." Oh, yes, please do. Make that clearer for us. 

Frank Bruni takes Ted Cruz to task for hypocricy on religion:

When Ted Cruz announced this week that he was firing his campaign’s communications director for circulating a false insinuation that Marco Rubio had belittled the Bible, he told reporters, “Even if it was true, we are not a campaign that is going to question the faith of another candidate.” Really? Huh. Then I must have been hallucinating last month at a Cruz event in Iowa where several of his handpicked supporters, who spoke just before him, mocked and dismissed Donald Trump’s professed Christianity.

Joe Nickell finds veteran charlatan Peter Popoff still pretending to have access to miracles, lamenting, "Despite repeated exposés, Popoff and his ilk continue to profit from the pain and suffering of the afflicted." 

Ben Radford writes about the Apollo 10 "mystery space music" thing, and it's hard to believe that he actually has to write this sentence:

Different conditions create different sounds, and a low, monotone “woooo” sound coming over a radio is far more likely to be interference than, say, alien music. 

Kavin Senapathy at Forbes draws a line connecting the anti-GMO hubbub to the organic-food industry. Joseph Mercola is right there in the first sentence.

Members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, including Lyle Jeffs, the brother of imprisoned leader Warren, are arrested for misusing food stamp funds.

Jeff Kramer at The Syracuse New Times surveys the presidential predictions of psychics, "the only presidential poll that matters, if you really stop to think about it."

Oh man, an article on the connection between New Atheism and dread of "existential risk." Speaking my very sad and scared language. 

The whole "hey that might be Bigfoot in the photo" thing has now strained all credulity. Come on. 

Quote of the Day:

Mark Joseph Stern, writing at National Geographic, seems to share CFI's position on the kind of science testimony judges need to hear: the accurate kind:

The Supreme Court needs a nominee who respects, values, and understands science—as well as the integral role that science plays in many crucial legal decisions. From environmental protection to reproductive rights, gay rights, and juvenile justice, many of the court’s most important, high-profile cases hinge on questions on scientific fact. Putting a science-literate justice on the court would help steer these critical cases toward outcomes that are grounded in reality. 

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Comments:

#1 Randy (Guest) on Wednesday February 24, 2016 at 10:27pm

So… given that there’s not really a way to know how well the Doomsday clock is calibrated, and that we’ve only used at most 17 of the possible 1440 settings, it seems that this is really not the best communications tool to use.  On top of it, when it moves in reverse, we violate physics.  I’m not aware of any case where it is possible for a whole clock to go back in time.

Let’s not speak of it again.

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