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What are you reading?
Posted: 23 November 2013 02:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 541 ]
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harry canyon - 23 November 2013 02:37 PM

I like the dead tree products. Alas, as many have mentioned we just don’t have the room for them. Since we’re trying to save money, we’ve been using the library a lot. So books come in but eventually go back out.

Just finished Idiot America by Charles P. Pierce.

I’ve got two books on my list at the moment The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett and Brilliant Blunders: From Darwin to Einstein by Mario Livio. I’ll probably go with the fiction first. I need some escapist reading at the moment. wink

Take care,

Derek

I’ll escape after the semester. I have too many excellent choices on my iPad and on my physical bookshelf, but some fiction does sound like a good choice after all the scientific research I’ve been reading.

[ Edited: 23 November 2013 02:48 PM by DarronS ]
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Posted: 01 December 2013 10:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 542 ]
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I have just finished Crucifying America - The Unholy Alliance Between the Christian Right and Wall Street - . J. Werleman

IMO this is a very important (short) book that every humanist concerned with the welfare of all should read.  It’s theme purports to illustrate the connection between the .1% at the top of the economy and the Xtian (southern) Right that the upper .1% need for votes.  It does this but the main theme is to show how economic injustice is destroying the basic values of the US.  Werleman does point out that it seems that we are not done with the civil war as yet.  Warning; it is often in barroom language.

Some quotes:

“The south is fixated on everything related to controlling race, sex, religious, practice, abortion laws, and repealing every progressive law that has come out of the federal government.”

For the years 1977 to 2010, the wealth of the top 1 percent increased by 281 percent, whereas the wealth of the middle class grew by 16 percent.  In that same period, the incomes of CEOs grew by 726 percent, whereas the average worker’s income grew by just 5.7 percent.

Today, the minimum wage is $7.25 per hour.  But according to a 2013 study by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, the minimum wage should now be $21.72 if it kept up with increases in worker productivity.  Even on a pure inflationary comparison, sans productivity, wageworkers should be earning a minimum of $10.25 per hour.

. . . the mainstream media’s desperation to appear unbiased at all times has meant journalists have confused objectivity with neutrality

Christianity’s simplistic world view divides the world into two halves: sinners versus do-gooders.  Evil versus righteousness.  Christian versus infidel. Good versus bad.  Black versus white.  In their narrow minds, there is no gray, there is no nuance.

Thanks to the Christian Right the nation has become an intellectual two speed nation, with an informed and technocratic elite on one side, and a willfully and proudly ignorant mass on the other.  The problem for us all is the stupid party has figured out how to win elections, albeit disingenuously, and that is the giant threat to the future of America. 

. . . the goal of anti-intellectualism is to oppress political dissent and, in the Christian Right, corporate interests have again found the perfect partner to help them in their goal of cutting taxes, opposing green initiatives, expanding oil drilling, increasing military spending, and eliminating benefits for the working class.


In fact, in 2012, just a tick over 31,000 individuals accounted for 25 percent of the total of $6 billion in contributions (to political candidates- GH) from identifiable sources.

Also, atheists tend to limit themselves to fighting fires that have little or no consequence in the broader sense of the nation’s body politick. Filing a lawsuit against a city that prevents it from displaying “Merry Christmas” is of far less value than ensuring corporate stooges dressed as fundamentalist Christians, like Scott Walker, Nikki Haley, and Rick Perry are prevented from gaining office, so that they cannot enact the corporate-driven religiously conservative agenda.

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Posted: 13 December 2013 10:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 543 ]
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Wheels for the World-Douglas Brinkley
A book about Henry Ford and the Ford Motor Company.
So far great read(100 pages in) Very informative with figures. 
Good narrative too. Covers the general industrial boom of the early 1900s too.
The book covers FoMoCo up to the 1990s as well.

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Posted: 14 December 2013 10:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 544 ]
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Mostly I’ve been reading instructions on how to put things together, how to make things work and why my computer screws up. Who has time for anything else? wink

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Posted: 16 December 2013 03:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 545 ]
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Been reading some Neil Postamans “Technopoly”
Considering the stress that engineering does to me, I find it enjoyable.

Also been reading some of Edgar Allen Poe. A theologian advised that TO get more involved into poetry so as to balance things.

Also been going here a lot recently
http://www.bookreviews.org/

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Posted: 16 December 2013 07:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 546 ]
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I.J. Abdul Hakeem - 16 December 2013 03:14 AM

Been reading some Neil Postamans “Technopoly”
Considering the stress that engineering does to me, I find it enjoyable.

Also been reading some of Edgar Allen Poe. A theologian advised that TO get more involved into poetry so as to balance things.

Also been going here a lot recently
http://www.bookreviews.org/

Looked up “Technopoly”.  Sounds like a good read. I definitely agree with the premise.

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Posted: 16 December 2013 08:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 547 ]
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Postman’s book, Amusing Ourselves to Death, has been one of the great influences on my thinking, one of those books I’ve kept referring back to for 20 years.  I’ll have to get a copy of Technopoly

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Posted: 05 January 2014 01:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 548 ]
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Finished reading The Myth of Martyrdom by Adam Lankford. http://www.amazon.com/The-Myth-Martyrdom-Shooters-Self-Destructive/dp/0230342132

I agree with the thesis in the book, however the writing style was irritating, IMO. Not worth it if you’ve already read Scott Atran.

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Posted: 05 January 2014 10:58 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 549 ]
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This week I finished a 24 lecture series from the Teaching Co entitled Making History:  How great Historians interpret the Past.  presented by ALLEN C Guelzo.

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Posted: 14 March 2014 02:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 550 ]
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I am currently reading “Testament-The Bible and History” by John Romer.  Very interesting book - discusses the development of the Bible and Xtianity in historical context.  Includes quite a bit of art history as well as the political history involved.  Worth reading if you are interested in how societies develop and change 350pp. 1988

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Posted: 14 March 2014 09:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 551 ]
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beliefdoubt - 24 April 2009 10:19 AM

Interested in the books people are reading, if any.

I’m currently reading “Losing my Faith” by William Lobdell

Lolita. It’s my book group pick. I read it years ago but forgot how funny it is and how good the writing is.

Lois

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Posted: 15 March 2014 09:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 552 ]
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I’m just finishing Cameron Smith’s book The Top Ten Myths About Evolution. It explores the most common myths as posed by creationists and IDers including the “Great Chain of Being” fallacy, and the hilarious “missing link” argument. It’s a good book to review before a debate. Ken Hamm would hate it though, just like he hates the new “Noah” movie.


Cap’t Jack

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Posted: 16 March 2014 03:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 553 ]
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Because of scholarships and student organizations I have been reading ALOT of books the past few weeks.
Thankfully, they were all great reads and I enjoyed them all
So here we go:


BOOKS FINISHED/ NEARLY FINISH

Up from Slavery—autobiography of Booker T. Washington (pioneering educator for African Americans)

The life and time of Emir AbdulKader, A story of true Jihad—-John Wiser


BOOKS CURRENTLY READING

The China Stuy: the most Comprehensive study of Nutrion ever conducted——Dr. Colin Cambell (Cornell Univ. Doctor)

The Sociology of Religion—-Grace Davie (Univ of Exter Sociologist)

Delusions of Granduer: The United Nations and global intervention——- edited by Ted Galen Carpenter (Cato Institute)

Batman and Psychology——— Travis Langley (Henderson State Univ. Psychologist)

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Posted: 16 March 2014 05:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 554 ]
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Re: Lolita. Yup, I read it in about 1959, and enjoyed it greatly.  Excellent writing, great humor, and especially trilingual puns.  LOL  (Yeah, I had to use a French dictionary and have a Russian speaking friend translate the third meanings.) 

I especially got a kick out of my quite dumb, conservative next door neighbors who couldn’t wait to read it for the prurient parts, missed all the humor, and were quite disappointed at the lack of explicit sex.  smile 

Occam

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Posted: 16 March 2014 05:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 555 ]
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One of my classes this semester has gotten away from scientific readings. I’m taking a Native America Cultures class, and our current reading is Lakota Woman, the autobiography of Mary Crow Dog, who married one of the American Indian Movement leaders. The book is interesting and intense. I can only read a couple of chapters at a time before I have to put it down and relax.

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