Friday, 31 May 2013

Ray Comfort and Genius (Of John Lennon)

Firstly its good to see Ray cashing in on the Beatles, what’s next Iron Maiden after all they sing about the number of the beast in a non sacrilegious way. One would almost think he was into money making....but we all know he is not in it for the money its about spreading the word of god.
lyric/The-Number-of-the-Beast
wikipedia.org


Ok, so this post has to do with the movie Genius, which you can watch below. Its long and at times frustrating but you get a feel of what terrorist Christianity is with all the shouting and philosophical questions which can be melded into any argument you feel like debating.

www.youtube.com

After watching the movie, here are a few problems (I have a problem with everything he says, but we don’t have all day) that I have with Ray.
Ray likes to talk about morality? But dude, surely you don't want us to get our morals from god. After all shellfish is good, and stoning is bad. But then again maybe I am just reading the bible too literally.

Around 15:00 minutes he berates people about evolution/creation. Shouting like only a corner street preacher can. Ray let me just point out here that Something can came from nothing its called the Casmir Effect (www.scientificamerican.com). Ray, piece of advice...study science you you will be surprised what it has to offer.

Around 17:00 minutes Ray gets into all the sins we commit. He talks about Lies, Lust, and Blasphemy. But who cares, there is no proof for god. So if there is no proof for god can it be blasphemy, can it be bad to lust  if the rules are made by this imaginary god.

Around 21:00 minutes Ray gets some people to convert by praying. But hang on Ray, prayer does not work (iamchristianiamanatheist/godandscienceorg-and-lies-i). Additionally, you are praying to a god that does not exist.

Around 24:00 and this is important. Ray says "He doesn’t take pleasure in the death of the wicked" when a lady is asking god to strike her down if she has sinned. Ray, don't be a liar of all people I would think you would have read the bible, just think about Noah, Sodom and Gomorrah to name a few. 

In conclusion, all Rays arguments are based on a god. But there is one thing missing.

At no point in this movie (between the ranting) has there been any proof for a god.

Thursday, 30 May 2013

American Family Association ......Again

I have been trying to make my intense debate comments work again....actually I thought they were working, so if you see comments to myself I am not shamelessly self promoting. Ok I am, but I have a reason. ;)
 xxxxxxxxx

Anyway, I was reading a blog post on Hausdorff's Bible Blog about repeating ourselves and finding stuff out for the first time. hausdorffbb/why-do-we-keep-repeating-ourselves

In which there was a link to an XKCD comic about learning stuff for the first time. Today I want to share with you something I learnt for the first time on holy bullies and headless monsters about the American Family Association. For those of you that have read this blog before you may have seen/read the disdain I hold for the American Family Association. In one of these posts I simply stated what should be said about this association (read Nazis) that they are a hate group.is-american-family-association-hate
Particularly one of there radio hosts Bryan Fischer is well I don’t actually know what to say about him. Except he is an ignorant little hate filled man.bryan-fischer

Okay back on topic. These fools of the American Family Association have a news site OneNewsNow, and my simple question is how? To run a website and have enough people that actually follow it and people that contribute towards it in advertising revenue is astounding. But not only should I say astounding, this is very worrying for the United States of America when a group like this can have a platform that is capable of spreading its ignorant message all across the 50 states and the rest of the world. Luckily the Southern Poverty Law Centre  is keeping a watchful eye on them, but the problem is that these guys/girls have a certain amount of established power.

Lets look at OneNewsNow and see what is important news this day (30 May 9:00 Korean Time) These are their top news stories
Second Amendment rights group aims for five-million-name petition
Texas school district appeals Bible banner ruling
Rep. Bachmann says she won't run for re-election
What Congress can do to repeal ObamaCare
Attorney: Don't expect apology from Attorney General Holder
When you look at these headlines one would suspect that there is an agenda here, it seems very conservative and very religious.


But lets give them the benefit of the doubt and see what sections are there news categorised in, and the Categories are:
Business
Church
Culture
Education
Legal-Courts
Media
Missions 
National Security
Persecution
Politics-Govt
Pro-Life
Perspectives.
 I am not sure but I think this news site is going to be biased towards Christianity. Hence is it really news or propaganda?

I think anyone who has an opportunity to criticise this ridiculous association and the so called news that they deliver should do it. I for one will be commenting (read troll) and making some new friends as I enlighten them about why this association is just so screwed up.
xxxxxxxx

On a funny note when the OneNewsNow website decided to change the word gay to homosexual (for what reasons I have no idea...maybe to try be less offensive?), they ended up changing the name of sprinter Tyson Gay to Tyson Homosexual www.telegraph.co.uk. Reminds me of the whole "cdesign proponentsists" episode. ncse.com

Now I am off to take a long weekend trying to forget about these fools.
"Darn just found out they close the comment sections pretty quickly, as I think I am not alone in expressing my distaste in an intellectual and honest way"

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Coming soon your new major Religion

I have been finding out more and more about some crazy cults/religions. As these are not yet mainstream I thought I would present a list of my favourite new major future religions. This list I am sure will be updated in the future as I find more interesting ones and get rid of the more boring ones.

1) Black Hebrew Israelites
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Hebrew_Israelites
These groups believe that they are originated from the lost Jewish tribes (Not to be confused with British Israelisim), which I don’t have an issue with, after all who said all Jews have to be white. However, any group where the leadership is determined by birth status is usually something to watch out for. Also interesting that there have been allegations of racism and black supremacy against them. This kind of reminds me about apartheid South Africa, and also lets me have less sympathy for certain factions being denied citizenship in Israel.

2) Raelism
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ra%C3%ABlism
Another UFO story akin to Scientology. Nice thing about this nutty religion, you have to get an official letter of   disaffiliation  from the religion you were involved with prior to becoming a Raelian. Personally this sounds like a nut-job who decided to make a religion pretty much like Muhammed or L Ron Hubbard or Jesus or...... On a plus side these guys seem pretty liberated when it comes to sex. Which is a turnaround from the Abrahmic virgin religions.
Oh yeah and they believe crop circles are created by UFOs.

3) British Israealis
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Israelism
Not to be confused with the Black Hebrew Israelites, which is kind of difficult as these guys are lily white. Although they believe the same thing as before that they are originated from the lost Jewish tribes. Needless to say they have also been associated with racism. Why do all these groups that associate with being a special tribe go so well with racism? Maybe because they feel privileged, after all they are gods chosen people.

4) Scientology
Just because its awesome how screwed up it really is. This info graphic explains Scientology perfectly...or should I say describes the lunacy perfectly.
iamchristianiamanatheist/scientology
But then again what do you expect from a religion that was created by a science fiction writer. For that matte he was quoted as saying "You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion." en.wikiquote.org


5) Korean Jesus Church (Okay the real name is World Mission Society Church of God)
These guys are absurdly awesome, they believe that Jesus has already come again.... and he was Korean. Funnily enough the Korean jesus established the church and now the followers pray to him. And no one sees a problem with this? On a plus side they are heavily involved in charity and they believe that salvation only comes through god the mother (no sexism in this church).
One more thing I am not saying Jesus was white or that he even existed. What I am saying is I am pretty sure he was not Korean.

What I expect to be a religion some day.
After looking at Raelism and Scientology, I have to conclude that some day there will be a form of religion that has to do with what Divid Icke believes. After all his ideas are about as whacked out as the rest.
 http://www.davidicke.com/

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

A list of things that proves a creator (intelligent designer)?

Creationism (Intelligent Design) likes to say god designed or made everything. So here is my list of ridiculous things that we can attribute to a god that is a designer of everything. The creator of all things good, the one and only. The all knowing, all seeing, all powerful.....ok enough I think I made my point.

 1) The platypus.... seriously the dumbest design. Just look at this creature, it makes no sense. Actually most animals in Australia make no sense....its as if they were designed separately evolved separately from other species.
 Platypus main image
www.zoo.org.au

2) Earthquakes, Volcanoes, Tornadoes......etc etc in places where highly religious people live. It shows that a god really actually just does not care at all.

3) Prayer does not work....... Again it shows that this god does just does not care at all. I have written on this before.
iamchristianiamanatheist/godandscienceorg-and-lies-i

4) Homosexuality in animals. It defeats the whole argument of homosexuality being unnatural.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexual_behavior_in_animals

5) The Crusades or 9/11. Why? I thought you were a god of love.
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/remembering-9-11/

6)Contradictions in your divinely inspired texts. I thought as a creator with control you would at least not let this one slip....I guess I thought wrong.

Would love to see what you can add to this list.



Monday, 27 May 2013

Words hurt

I saw this brilliant comic on xkcd, I just wish religious people would realize this and stop forcing their ideas onto others.What this comic says about the use of words it very ture "it can make you feel sad or happy." For example, by saying gay marriage is a abomination is very hurtful.


http://xkcd.com/1216/

Religious people like to say to atheists that we are infringing on their rights by not allowing prayer in schools for example. However, they do not realize that by spouting their trashy ideas, they are hurting people. While all we are trying to do is stop them hurting people.

Have a great week.

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Godandscience VI

Its back mostly the reason that I take so long doing these, is that it is so tedious in the first place to read this rubbish and then rebut it. Anyway this time around the question is "Is intelligent design a testable scientific theory". So before you run away from boredom as you know the answer lets start.
http://www.godandscience.org/evolution/intelligentdesign.html

Straight away it starts badly, where the author gives the definition of intelligent design as:
In essence, ID is a statistical study in which the product is unlikely to occur by naturalistic process alone.
But we know this is wrong as the Discovery Institute the bastion of intelligent design defines ID as:
The theory of intelligent design holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection.
www.discovery.org

Then the article actually gets good by showing why ID is not accepted and why we need to have a testable hypothesis. Until, the author starts saying that intelligent design is used in fields like forensics, archaeology, anthropology and SETI. Now this is correct, but also misleading as the creator of these finding is using scientific evidence for their claims. More importantly the creator of these findings is a real person that we can touch, or if they are passed away we have birth records or documents which show they were real in the first place. And later on when the author says that ID theory has "eliminated (falsified) all extraterrestrial examples of radio waves monitored as being the product of intelligent design." this is also very misleading, as it was science and understanding of probability that determined this.

The author then goes on to point out the model for ID and shows it should have the following points:
1) The intelligent Designer is identified
2) The model is detailed
3) The model can be refined
4) The model is testable and falsifiable
5) The model can make predictions

The author also then goes on to say the God of the bible is the Intelligent Designer and there is less variability on the Y  chromosome than in the mitochondrial DNA, which can be explained using biblical texts. Except for the fact that the mitochondrial DNA is only inherited from the mother to all males and females. While the Y chromosome can only be inherited in males from males. So how can one compare this genetic variation? Would it not be better to quantify the X versus the Y chromosome? Also the mitochondria have been around longer than the Y chromosome if you believe in the science that has been proven over and over again in the little subject called evolution.

Then we get into some more predictions or should I say we get told what science is telling us. Below is a list of 8 things that science is telling us according to the author.
Science tells us that:
1) There is no evidence for more than one universe or more than one creation event.
The author made a giant leap to show that Science will prove that the universe only had one beginning, which automatically means ID is true. NO, it does not mean that, but also this is a lie as I have pointed out before.
www.sciencedaily.com
iamchristianiamanatheist/godandscience-iii
2) Examples of fine tuning continue to increase. Some parameters designed to within a part in 10exp120.
This fine tuning argument is ridiculous. As why do we have to be carbon based? Why do we have to breathe oxygen? As humans we do, but what about a life form that is silicon based, will their parameters be the same?
3) Rocky planets matching the general characteristics of planet earth have been few. Most planets found are large gas giants orbiting very close to their stars. Rocky planets orbiting red dwarfs or stars larger than our Sun are not candidates for life since they suffer from tidal locking and insufficient short wavelength light to support photosynthesis (small stars) or have short stellar lifetimes (less than one billion years for larger stars).
This is turning out not to be true either.
kepler-62-is-a-ripe-seti-target
kepler-62-habitable-zone-two-worlds
4) No other life found. SETI has been completely unsuccessful.
True. But who says that other life forms (if they exist) a) want to communicate with us b) are as advanced as us or c) are pointing their telescopes/transmitters in the right direction.
5) It is impossible to chemically produce many basic molecules required for origin of any living system.
Rubbish as a chemist I find this insulting. I have dealt with this before in a related post, but the fact is that the basic molecules for life can very easily be produced.
iamchristianiamanatheist/chemical-origons-of-life
6) Naturalistic synthesis of either biochemical nor replicative pathways have not been described. In fact, many scientists think that they could not have arisen by any naturalistic means.
Again see the point above about the chemical origins of life or the link below
www.rsc.org/chemistryworld
Also if you want you could read a review article on simple self replicating chemicals which was published in 2004.
fab.cba.mit.edu/classes
7) Contrary to the expectations of evolutionary theory, the fossil record is replete with complex transitions and new designs whereas simple transitions (intermediates) are rare. Evolutionary theory would expect the opposite to be true and to be reflected in the fossil record.

Their are multiple transition species, it is just that ID proponents refuse to accept the evidence. The god of the gaps argument is an argument from ignorance and/or dishonesty.
8) Evolution predicts slow recovery following extinctions and that those recoveries will be filled by the species surviving the extinction event. However, the fossil record indicates rapid recovery with completely different designs and species appearing within a period of tens of thousands of years or less.
I think the author is misinterpreting the data here again, as it is a lot more complex than that.
www.pbs.org
Or if the author is talking about the Cambrian explosion, they are ignoring the other extinction events. This is called fitting the data to your outcomes and is dishonest. Also the Cambrian explosion was not tens of thousands of years it was more like 30 million years.
www.pbs.org

Okay enough for one day. If you want to read more about this crazy site follow the link below.
iamchristianiamanatheist/godandscience-v

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Are Converts a Danger (Woolwich Murder)

I was reading an article on the horrifying Woolwich murder this past week in the UK. I am sure most people are aware of what happened, so I wont regurgitate the story here. This article I am talking about was dealing with the anti-Muslim backlash.... and I am not talking about that either. I don't agree with any back-lash but this is not what I saw as the most worrying thing in the article.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22664835

For me the most disturbing thing in the article was the lines that read.
Batool Al-Toma, an Irish-born woman who converted to Islam 25 years ago, said converts may be "vulnerable" to more radical views because they feel a "sense of isolation and alienation from family and friends."
The reason this scares me, is because it is spot on. But I will wager that the  reason that these new converts hold these radical views is not from a feeling of isolation from friends or family.

I think it is simply a case of someone really that is not stable looking for some kind of stability in their life and finding it in the most screwed up of ways.

This can be likened to alcoholism (or any other addiction) where a person quits the habit, but just replaces it for another habit. In this case (religion) these people are deeply unhappy and looking for some kind of meaning and find meaning in becoming suicidal/homicidal. I cannot put all the blame on these people, as they do get brainwashed by people far smarter than them. But this is essentially what religion is.....Brainwashing.

Another point to ponder if you are a "Christian" and convert to "Islam" or vice versa..... don’t you think maybe the person has a bigger problem that needs psychiatric help. After all if you are willing to get ostracised, why not choose something logical like atheism.

I made a guest post

Hey I was on the BitchSpot Podcast (May 29 2015)
Bitchspot report

I did a guest post at Candain Atheist. (September 13 2013) - Now defunct
 
Helping my friend Hausdorff out. (July 10 2013)
hausdorffbb
Today I did a guest post at the great Ramblings of Sheldon. (May 24 2013)
ramblingsofsheldon

Friday, 24 May 2013

Human embryonic cells by theraputic cloning..... no embryos died in the making of this blog

Before the obvious questions arise, let me just say. There may be errors in this paper, or simple mistakes due to quick publishing.
http://www.nature.com/news/stem-cell-cloner-acknowledges-errors-in-groundbreaking-paper-1.13060

Last week the news reported on the development of a new cloning method for embryonic stem cells. This discovery is fantastic as it shows that embryonic stem cells can actually be obtained without killing a fertilised embryo, so this should shut the people that have a firm stance against embryonic stem cell research. Unfortunately, this has not happened and if anything it has created more hype than it is worth.
http://www.nature.com/news/human-stem-cells-created-by-cloning-1.12983
http://lesfemmes-thetruth.blogspot.kr/2013/05/my-god-have-mercy-on-us-human-cloning.html
The paper
www.cell.com

So I want to try explain in simple terms what has been achieved in this research and why it should not be a problem for all those Christians that are in up in arms about some fine research that has been down. Additionally, let me add that this research offers up a great opportunity for remedies that could be effective against degenerative diseases that nothing else can cure (Not even prayer).

So this is my take on the simple points of this research.

1) There was no fertilisation. So this is not killing one of gods precious creations, if it is then the scientist that created these cell lines is god. Simple enough to understand I hope.

2) The DNA in these embryonic stem cells is the DNA of another donor. So for example if your DNA was introduced and you terminate the stem cells line then in effect all your are doing is killing yourself, but this is not true as.......well you are still alive as you terminated the cell line (please see point4 before debating this line of reasoning).

3) Scientists are not playing god. God does not exist to a very high probability, so how can these scientists be playing a role that has no evidence for it. All they are doing is trying to better humanity.

4) HUMAN CLONING IS NOT POSSIBLE USING THIS TECHNIQUE. (I put this in caps, as people really do not get this). So let me say this again, before you talk about murdering babies and humans etc etc etc. HUMAN CLONING IS NOT POSSIBLE USING THIS TECHNIQUE.HUMAN CLONING IS NOT POSSIBLE USING THIS TECHNIQUE.

I hope you understand the basics now.... because for me the most important part of the study besides the obvious cloning was the following.

One egg donor showed a propagation of 4 cell lines from 5 blastocytes. This is something very interesting, that personally I believe some research should be done on to understand why these eggs are creating more cell lines. This same trend was discovered in another study where the same egg donor was used, so clearly there is something interesting going on here genetically.

Remember you never have to fear what you do not understand and that has validity. You only have to fear irrational thought with no validity.

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Is morality an atheist issue

I have been reading a lot of blogs lately that deal with morality, and I think there is nothing wrong with discussing morality in a forum. However, I am faced with a dilemma and that is simply, is morality actually a issue for atheism, and the simple answer is no it is not. As gets pointed out on every atheist blog and every comment section on theist blogs (as a correction), atheism is the rejection of a belief in a deity.

I think this is a very important issue to address, as morality can be approached from so many ways i.e. subjective, objective, deistic, social etc etc etc. But very importantly, morality does not address the question of if there is a god! I will happily debate morality with anyone at anytime, but these people involved in these debates should realise at the outset that I am not taking this as proof for anything, I am just discussing how our morality actually developed.

Personally, I believe that morality came from social development and this determined what morals where good for society.I believe that religious texts where written as a moral code that was relevant at the time, although its very clear that it is outdated and is not beneficial to society at present. It is for the same reason that I don't think people will say "Mein Kampf" is a good philosophy, even though at the time there were people who thought it was the way froward for the German population.

 A simple example of an outdated moral is the one that sex before marriage is a bad thing. In the past, if one had sex before marriage, you could have had a pregnancy very easily and I guess this is one of the reasons people got married so young back then. Nowadays, with readily available contraception it is very easy for you to have sex before marriage and not get pregnant.

Now I have pointed out why morality discussions are interesting, what have I actually proved with respect to atheism? Nothing!

This is for me a simple reason why morality is not an atheistic issue, as it does not prove anything about the existence or non-existence of a god.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Venner Suicide against Gay Marriage?

As the news is reverberating around the world about Dominique Venner's suicide and what it could stand for. At this moment of writing this blog, it is still not 100% certain if his suicide had to do with a protest against gay marriage in France, but it seems that way.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-22614994
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-22620143
www.independent.co.uk

So lets get to the point, the guy is an idiot. Blowing your head of with a pistol in front of a lot of people, is simply what a psychotic/mentally ill person would do. If the reason that he did this is in protest of the new law in France that allows gay marriage, then it shows that not only was he mentally ill but he was also homophobic. Should  I have sympathy for his family, yes. I am sure they will have to deal with a lot of really difficult questions regarding a mentally ill family member, who has been a bastion of some really ridiculous ideas regarding Sharia law overtaking France etc.


Dominique Venner was not a christian or a catholic as some people are claiming. If anything it seems he was a Pagan, so there is a religious/spiritual/call-it-what-you-want element. So I guess we can call his death another attributed to mythical beliefs in things that are not real.
www.buzzfeed.com

This issue should not be about gay marriage, this issue should be about a mentally ill person who decided to take their life in a most spectacular fashion. He is what the people at Encyclopedia Dramatica would call "An Hero".

xxxxxxx

Update: It has been confirmed that Venner killed himself in protest against gay marriage http://www.bbc.co.uk
Apparently he was not mentally unstable according to this report, to that claim I say bullshit. Anyone that blows their head off in a public arena is mentally unstable. Imagine the trauma that others that saw it will have to suffer, that shows a lack of empathy which is a sign of mental illness as well.

The ex Worldwide Church of God...now Grace Communion International...soon to be....and then....

I was reading a post on the excellent Ramblings of Sheldon about abuses in the Sovereign Grace Ministries. ramblingsofsheldonThis linked me to the Wartburg Watch, where I read in the request for comments about the Worldwide church of god. thewartburgwatch.com

So I got to reading about the now ex-Worldwide church of god, or should I say supposed to be ex church. wiki/Grace Communion International
The church has now changed its name to Grace Communion International gci.org and some of its doctrines, but it still exists although the numbers are decreasing according to the wikipedia page. So why does this astound me as much as it does.

When we look into the history of the church, we find a church rocked with sex and money scandals. A church that made false prophecies about the end times, which never got fulfilled. A church that believe in a form of British Israelism (wiki/British Israelism) which has been shown to have no historical or biological evidence. A church whose founder Herbert Armstrong has been labelled a false prophet and a heretic by a former dean of the college campus that they used to run, although the Grace Communion International disagrees to what degree he was a false prophet gci and Uncle Herb

But what can we learn from this story of the former Worldwide Church of god.
1) Churches can do anything, people will still believe if leaders have enough charisma to blind their followers.
There are sections of the GCI church who still hold Uncle Herb in high esteem after all of these changes in the church.

2) Change your doctrine/name if it is affecting business and money income.
This is an interesting aspect of the WCG, as Uncle Herb died in 1986 yet the major reforms only came in 1995. I would guess these reforms came around the same time as a boost in numbers was needed. Also the WCG and now GCI has an interesting tithe system which brings them a lot of money every year, really learning about this is worth it as they believe in the Levitical laws of tithing, which can be up to 30% of your income in some years.

3) Cults do change into churches.
In sociology you learn that the difference between a cult and a church is purely based on numbers of followers. This is denied by many religious groups, but the fact is that in the beginning this WCG was classified as a cult under uncle Herb. However, now the GCI is classified as a church.

4) Borrow your sacred texts from others.
If you actually go read the various christian scriptures and then go look at the Greek mythologies and further back at the Egyptian myths, you quickly start to see resemblances. The WCG was no different in borrowing from other churches what they thought was good to defend their positions, just as Islam borrows from Christianity etc.

These are interesting points to consider as we see churches around the world nowadays starting to reconsider their views on homosexuality for example. However, for the last 2000 years they have been preaching that same sex marriage or sex is wrong. Churches are hypocritical and will remain hypocritical as long as they can make their money.

xxxxx
On a side note maybe the GCI in the United Kingdom just actually does not care about image, or know that it is not necessary to dupe strong believers....after all their website is still Worldwide Church of God http://www.wcg.org.uk/

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Religious discrimination

This week was the release of the much needed International Religious Freedom report by the US state department.
http://www.state.gov/
This has been followed by reports in new agencies detailing the religious bigotry and atrocities that exist because of religion around the world.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/

Now I will applaud the US state department on their report, not because I think religion deserves a special place in society, but because they are making an official report about how bad religion is. The original reason is to make sure that the "freedom of religion" can be practised in all countries, but it has ended up showing that religion is extremely hateful. No where in the report did I see non religious people committing these acts of terror against other religious groups. Granted I have note read the reports for every country so I could be wrong, but I doubt it.

The one thing missing in this report I suppose would be discrimination by religious people against non-believers and not necessarily believers of different faiths. This is important to get a full picture of the discrimination that exists in religions around the world. However I suppose it does fall out of the scope of this report, as atheism (the rejection of a belief in a god) is not a religion. So as long as the religious are persecuting non-believers they will not be in this report.

Hopefully one day in the not to distant future, we can look back on these reports by the state department and be able to say "this is an important piece of history that details how religion was destroying the world." To which we will get the reply "what is religion?"

Monday, 20 May 2013

Anti-Vaccine Idiots

I was reading a very interesting article at Nature.com this week about the use of a vaccine that can prevent heroin use. Now obviously this is more complicated than it sounds here, but the fact is that this vaccine works in rats. The rats were shown to stop seeking the heroin that they were addicted to after getting the vaccine. Importantly the vaccine is safe!
heroin-vaccine-neutralizes-drug-before-it-hits-brain
nature.com(subscription needed)

As all things science related usually does, it got me thinking about what the anti-vaccers would think about this. For those of you that don't know the anti-vaccers are a movement of people that are opposed to the use of life saving vaccines. The reasons they believe this is due to mostly fraudulent scientific studies and pure ignorance.  Unfortunately this movement has got hold of some celebrities to endorse their views like the idiots Jenny McCarthy and Jim Carrey (see link below).
www.sciencebasedmedicine.org
Luckily there are people that are exposing these frauds.
www.jennymccarthybodycount.com

Now lets get back to the original question. If you are an anti-vaccer would you disapprove of this vaccine? The reason I ask is either way the consequences according to your hypothesis are dire. If they have the vaccine they will get ill (by whatever means you make up), or they will die from a heroin overdose. So which is better?

This is the kind of hypocritical land our anti-vaccer friends have to live in, when they do not apply logic to a debate.  A debate that has shown vaccines to be safe, so please vaccinate.


Sunday, 19 May 2013

Hypocrisy alive and well....horrible

I saw this in my feed list today and decided I had to share it. It is the thing that irritates me the most as an atheist. The hypocrisy of the religious nuts.

Honestly how dishonest do you have to be to criticize something and then engage in that something you are dishonest about. The sad part is that the homophobes in this movie are not only being dishonest to others but they are also self loathing and being dishonest to themselves. These homophobes have got rich from their dishonesty.......all praise god?????

 From the excellent youtube channel.
http://www.youtube.com/user/ConversationWithA

Evolution is fun

Enjoy it.

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Neanderthals place in the evoluton/creationism debate

I read a nice article this week from Nature magazine regarding the now extinct Neanderthals in Europe. nature Interestingly in the story there is still debate surrounding Neanderthals and how advanced they were compared to their Homo sapien counterparts. Which got me to thinking about what role the Neanderthals play in the whole creation/evolution argument. We should be aware that Neanderthals and Homo sapiens do not share the same part of the evolutionary tree according to DNA and fossil evidence. Although the evidence is their that we did interbreed with these species at some time in the past. Now as you read further please keep these things in mind.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8660940.stm

So if we and Neanderthals came from different parts of the evolutionary tree and these Neanderthals had a cognitive ability that scientists are having to rethink at this point. Then I ask myself why would god have allowed one of his creations, that is very similar to humans, to die? This is an important question to ask, as we often have our religious beliefs because we feel we are more advanced (privileged) than other species. But if there was another species that also was developing these abilities then why were they allowed to disappear?
http://www.nature.com/
http://www.sciencemag.org/

But for a moment lets say the creationists are going to doubt this claim, as they always do. The fact is that we Homo sapiens did interbreed with these Neanderthals! If this is the case then it proves the first point about them having  certain cognitive abilities which makes them another form of man that got wiped of the face of the earth by the all loving god.

So I come back to my original question. what part do the Neanderthals play in the evolution/creation debate? and my answer is simple, they settle the debate in favour of evolution. But they also settle the debate in the non existence of a caring and loving god.

You can disagree with the last point, but then your god is an evil god who erases his own creation from earth.


Friday, 17 May 2013

Catholic Church again?

So the Catholic Church is at it again. The ex Cardinal Keith O'Brien is to leave Scotland, where he sexually abused four other other priests in the St Andrews seminary. http://www.bbc.co.uk/ and http://www.bbc.co.uk/ One would think this is a good thing but its not because they want him too its that he is been given time for prayer and penance

How is this possible? Why is he not in jail? Ok maybe the statute of limitations has been reached on these crimes, but how is he still employed by the Vatican? And before you say he is no longer working for the Vatican as he is no longer a priest blah blah blah, lets look at what the Vatican is quoted as saying.

"The Vatican said that with the Pope's approval Cardinal O'Brien would leave Scotland "for the purpose of spiritual renewal, prayer and penance"."
and
"The Vatican will agree any decision regarding his future arrangements."

This is a guy that has admitted that he did these wrong things. This is a guy that has gone on record to apologise for what he deemed was beneath his standards. But yet he still has a job. Maybe his standards are higher than the company he works for?

And to top it off. This ex-cardinal was involved in the church group up in Scotland that is against gay marriage. He was even quoted as saying that gay marriage is a "grotesque subversion of a universally accepted human right".So the man that was sexually abusing other men is claiming being gay is wrong?  Lets hope the ex-cardinal uses his time of penance to get out the closet and pay back his debts to society. Where he will begin is a whole other question...preferably in jail I think.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Dishonesty from the pulpit

I came across this story on RightWingWatch.org by the two talk show pastors Swanson and Buehner, who frankly are two of the most chauvinistic ass-holes I have heard from in a long time. RWW This is actually there response to the FDA making the morning after pill available to girls 15 years and older.

They rant and rave and talk about how "What that means is that a father who has a daughter, she’s not free, she doesn’t have the feminist independence". Or in laymen’s terms, "I am a caveman with no brain, I will beat and enslave women, because magic guy in the sky says so So we know they are chauvinistic pigs, but what else are they not telling the truth about.

Well they quote a Dr Alan Christianson who said about a new gonorrhoea strain, “It might be a lot worse than AIDS in the short run” because it will "put someone into septic shock and death in a matter of days.” Which our friendly pastors used as an intro to tell us "ultimately God is in control and he can send a superbug to wipe out a lot of people".

But lets just get something straight. They are outright liars, and you can check these links below. This strain is not killing people in three days. This strain is not antibiotic-resistant. It is however a super-bug, which is not the same as saying antiobiotic-resistant, as in some cases a patient can be treated.
http://abcnews.go.com/
http://www.inquisitr.com
http://nymag.com/thecut
 And they they also fail to mention that the esteemed doctor Alan Christianson is actually a doctor of naturopathic medicine. And yeh its as bat shit crazy as it sounds, just read the intro to the wikipedia link to learn about vital energy and vaccine denial.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naturopathy

Why this doctor was interviewed about an actual medical problem I have no idea. Have to love those fact checkers at the media/news agencies.

I wish I could go to there church every Sunday as no one enjoys rants of lunatics more than me.

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Random Chats With Believers VIII

The other day I was reading a blog about stupid atheist arguments on the Bitchspot, which got me thinking about a conversation I had with a believer once, using one of these stupid arguments
http://bitchspot.jadedragononline.com/2013/05/10/four-bad-atheist-arguments/

I was at lunch with some friends of mine and the one guy who was there was/is a christian. For some reason, we started speaking about religion and the church. So I aksed the christian guy, what kind of christian he was, and he explianed to me that he was more of the charasmatic kind. Never really understood that label as charismatic means charismaa...which is something I would expect all religions to exhibit as people follow them.

Anyway for some reason this christian asked me what I believe, and as I was in a ludicrous mood. I started explaining to him that I believe in pink invisible unicorns, which are all around us and protect us similar to his angels. I then elaborated that when you die, the unicrons shove their horn up your ass to release you spirit.

After all this story to laughter by the other assembled people, he turned to me and says "I respect your belief." I was taken aback, so I told him "please don't as I was just kidding." So he asked me what I believed in... and I surely (maybe not) no longer surprised him when I said "I am an Atheist"

What surprises me was that he was prepared to accept my ridiculous beliefs.This is good in that it shows tolerance, but bad in that he was ready to accept anything I told him. My guess is this is one of the reasons that he is involved with religion, as he really is a good person and cannot accept that someone would lie to him.

For another random talk
http://iamchristianiamanatheist.blogspot.kr/2013/03/random-chats-with-believers-vii.html

Monday, 13 May 2013

Playoff beard

I have a confession to make, even though I grew up in South Africa and never saw an ice rink till the age of 12. I have become a fanatical Ice Hockey fan, thanks to a Canadian friend of mine. Luckily this year the mighty Toronto Maple Leafs have made it through to the playoffs and so I have gotten to grow my playoffs beard.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Playoff_beard

Now I am not a superstitious person, and I do it just to show support for my team.... and also I look dashing with a beard ;) Actually I would go so far as to say most hockey fans and supporters do it just to show support and do not believe the superstitions around it. After all the whole idea of the playoff beards only started in the 1980s and the NHL has been around since 1917.

But this got me thinking to what other wacky superstitions there are, especially those that have to do with religion.The top of the list surely has to be the Mormon temple garments which you have to wear under your clothes for the rest of your life as a reminder of your covenant with god.
http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/temples/mormon_underwear.html

There are also beards grown by multiple religious groups, which apparently has nothing to do with god saying so anyway?!?!
http://www.slate.com/

The Kabbalah red string, to protect against the evil eye.... maybe they have been watching too much Lord of the Rings.
http://www.kabbalah.com/wisdom/Red_String

The Jewish Kippah, which is used during prayer time.... and has also not been a tradition forever.
http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Judaism/Kippah.html

Whats your favourite religious superstition?

Friday, 10 May 2013

Chemical Origins of life

I am sick of creationists claiming that life could not have started from simple chemicals. It really makes me angry as I am a chemist and anyone with a chemistry background should be incapable of denying that life could originate from simple chemical processes.

It is for this reason that I am greatly encouraged by the latest edition of Nature Chemistry which focuses on the chemical origins of life. (http://www.nature.com/nchem/journal/v5/n5/full/nchem.1647.html) It has been many years since the initial primordial soup experiment of Miller and Urey (http://www.chem.duke.edu/~jds/cruise_chem/Exobiology/miller.html)which showed that basic chemical compounds could be transformed into the simple amino acids. Importantly chemists did not stop there, and they are now showing far more remarkable things with respect to chemical origins of replication/life utilising various types of molecules.
http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2013/02/self-assembling-molecules-offer-.html
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2857173/
http://www.nature.com/news/2011/110223/full/news.2011.118.html

But there is even simpler ways to show that life can happen through simpler processes than all these experiments shown above. Let it be noted here that the experiments above are also simple, but to show what is actually happening at a molecular level is the difficult part.

For example an amazing part of the cell is the cell wall (http://library.thinkquest.org/C004535/cell_membranes.html), which provides support for the cell and allows the flow of liquids and other chemical compounds (sugar, minerals etc.) in and out of the cell. Now its a real simple experiment to take some lipids (a type of fat which has a water loving and water hating  part) and put it them into water, where after you will see surely some lipid bilayers taking on a round form. In other words we have water inside and outside... which is the basic form of a cell wall.  The amazing thing about this experiment is that even a 5 year old can do it.


 http://studentweb.usq.edu.au/home/U1013108/biotutor/phospholipidbilayer.html



So when a creationists says there is no way that the origin of life can be explained I know that they are dismissing facts.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

The Antichrist delusion

 This is a follow up post to another one a few weeks back about what names mean.
http://iamchristianiamanatheist.blogspot.kr/2013/05/tgif-satire-atheist-post.html

Sometimes, I enjoy reading the arguments by religious groups for creationism or existence of god. Basically I do this because I then have blogging fuel, it also helps me counter new arguments in debates. For some reason there are always new arguments for god. Fortunately, you just have to learn how to see the bones of the argument and then you can see that they are actually not that new.

Anyway this post has got to do with the antichrist (ghostly noises in the back ground) and what I see as a small trend emerging. For some reason there are people out there who believe that Barack Obama is the antichrist.
http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/blog/
http://signpostsofthetimes.blogspot.kr/

Now regardless what you think of his politics etc, I have to wonder where this comes from. Luckily the people at Snopes have made this easy for me and so I can just put the link to this lunacy here. Additionally see the original post that I made about Barack Obama's name, the link is at the top of the article.
http://www.snopes.com/politics/obama/antichrist.asp

But what i want to talk about here, is have not all these people got the prophecy wrong? Firstly, I always thought that the antichrist was meant to come before the rapture. Apparently, I am not the only person to think this, but then again a lot of scholars cannot agree on this either....and here is me thinking the bible actually made sense.
http://www.biblelineministries.org/articles/basearch.php3?action=full&mainkey=THE+ANTICHRIST
http://www.prophecydepot.net/2012/will-the-church-witness-the-antichrist/

More importantly, the antichrist will reign for 7 years. So that means that next year is the final year that he will reign or be in office? So many questions that just do not MAKE ANY SENSE!

http://www.raptureme.com/resource/ac46.html

But then again Bill Clinton was also the antichrist....I love the Internet, stuff just never goes away
http://www.soundanalarm.net/ClintonSetsthePatternofantichrist.html
http://poweredbychrist.homestead.com/files/clinton1/decoy1.htm

Hang on I see a pattern here. That's right its all lies.



Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Why should I care about crationism?

Why should I care, it makes no difference to me.
It does not affect my life, so why should I care.
 
These are responses from atheist friends I often hear when talking about the creationism movement. They say its irrelevant to fight it as it does not affect them, and they know it is wrong. Well they are correct science shows that it is wrong, but I disagree with them that it is not worth fighting. Some people reading this will disagree with me as well, so let me give you some examples of bad science that most people think are worth fighting against.
 
Vaccines cause autism.
The Climate is not changing (i.e. there is no global warming).
Homoeopathy and alternative medicines.
 
If we look just at vaccines and alternative medicines and ask the question how many people have died by reverting to this bad science, it is very obvious that the fight is worth it. In the same way fighting creationism will lead to an improvement in scientific thinking (no more ignorance), which will lead to advances in science, which will benefit mankind.
 
So I ask you again is creationism worth fighting?

Monday, 6 May 2013

Ignorance

There have recently been two fantastic posts by two bloggers I follow. The one is by Hausdorff and refers to a debate Dawkins and a Young Earth Creationist.
http://hausdorffbb.blogspot.kr/2013/05/a-conversation-between-dawkins-and.html
The other Will Ockham and has to do with ignorance.
http://damnedalready.blogspot.kr/2013/05/does-religion-poison-everything.html

These two blogs got me thinking about the debate between Richard Dawkins and Wendy Wright of the Concerned Women for America. I had initially seen only parts of the interview in the TV series The Genius of Charles Darwin. But after watching more of it, I can honestly say that its even worse than what you see in the TV series. Its ignorance on a whole new level.

At one point early in the interview, Dawkins asks if there is a hidden agenda. Wendy Wright answers that there is not a hidden agenda, and here is my take.

She does not have a hidden agenda! She has been so brain washed by the church and bible that she is incapable of having a hidden agenda. Her ignorance stems from a closure of her mind to any evidence which supports evolution, this is evident as she does talk about evolution and museums etc. So she has seen the evidence, but she is closed to it completely, her ignorance is extreme.

This shows perfectly how strong the church can be in terms of making people believe utter rubbish with no facts presented whatsoever. In church all you need to do is say GOD SAYS..........

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Afghanistan and what religion did

Sometimes pictures can convey a message far better than words. Look at what religion did to Afghanistan.





Saturday, 4 May 2013

God and mental health

I was reading an article from the Journal of religion and health about the effect of belief in god and mental health.
http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10943-013-9712-3
http://www.realclearscience.com/blog/2013/04/belief-in-punitive-god-associated-with-poor-mental-health.html

This article is great news in so much that it is showing that belief in a gods can negatively effect mental health. However, there are some things we should be aware of and I wish to highlight them here.

1) This study deals with a person own belief about their god, or in other words the way a person perceives god. That is if a person perceives god as benevolent, then they are not going to have any negative mental effects. However if the perceives go as and angry (wrathful) god then they are more likely to suffer some form of mental illness.

2) It should be noted that mental illness in these categories can be either general anxiety, social anxiety, paranoia, obsession or compulsion. Now these results do show the same trend as with some other studies, which show an angry got can lead to depression, but this is not what is reported in this study.

3) Although the sample size was big, there are still issues that need to be considered as the sample size is still not big enough to represent the whole population. Additionally the questions in the study may have not been as discerning in a determination of what is benevolent or angry.

So we can learn something from this study, but lets not get ahead of ourselves and start telling people that religion is bad for your mental health and studies have shown this. More data is needed and hopefully soon we can show what we have known all along. 

Friday, 3 May 2013

Kepler-62 planet system (what would extraterrestial life mean?)

Since the discovery of exoplanets and particularly the Kepler-62 exoplanet system with 5 planets in the so called habitable zone. The Science links are subscription only, but well worth it if you have the access.
http://news.discovery.com/space/alien-life-exoplanets/kepler-62-is-a-ripe-seti-target-13041.htm
http://news.discovery.com/space/alien-life-exoplanets/kepler-62-habitable-zone-two-worlds-130418.htm
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/340/6132/587.full
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/340/6132/577.full







Anyway this got me thinking to about the "what if" question. What if we find some other form of life on another planet. How will this effect peoples outlook on religion, or more importantly how are religious people going to manipulate their sacred texts to adapt to this fact.


There are so many ways to view this, but the fact remains that we would no longer be alone. If we are no longer alone, we can no longer say we are special or the so called chosen ones by a god. How would your opinion changes, would you consider this proof of the absence of a god, as no major religious texts (except scientology) at the moment mention the existence of other forms of life. One would think this is a major thing to know about, so it would be in the text somewhere.

Again let me ask "what if?"



TGIF (Satire atheist post)

So I was watching this video on youtube about Obama being the Antichrist. Yes these views actually exist.
So I thought if christians can do it, so can I...... so here is my attempt and glorification of myself :)

My name is Kingsley Christian Kemp (I am not joking, this is legit)

So the word Kingsley means The King's Field.
http://www.babynames.com/name/Kingsley

And Christian means well ....Follower of Christ.
http://www.babynames.com/name/Christian

And Kemp means "name of a champion at jousting or wresteling"
http://www.houseofnames.com/kemp-family-crest

So my names means I am the King of the Christians (followers of christ) who is a champion. Hence from now forth all Christians should listen to me their king. As an atheist I now tell all my loyal followers to disregard the bible and become atheists.

I think there is a conundrum here somewhere.

Have a great Friday :)

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Interpretations of the Bible/Koran/Bhagavad Gita/......

It has always amazed me that the bible and other religious texts can be interpreted in various ways. What go me thinking about this again was an answer to a question on misinterpretation by a theologian.
http://gracethrufaith.com/ask-a-bible-teacher/open-to-misinterpretation/

What amazes me about christians is that they say misinterpretations happen as humans do not understand the gospel correctly, but how can you when there are so may different translations and version. So the answer according to the link is prayer, but we all know prayer does not work.
http://iamchristianiamanatheist.blogspot.kr/2013/04/godandscienceorg-and-lies-i.html


As for muslims, they always like to brag that the koran has never been changed and its still original. OK, fine but then how do you explain sunni’s and shia's? Thats two very big different interpretations of the koran!

My favourite misinterpretation or story has to be Jonah and the whale or fish (I want to see this fish). we got told when I still had to go to Church Classes that this really happened. How could they say this happened, did no body at the time (1983) actually know what the inside of a whale looked like? And I say whale or fish, as this changed from time to time, maybe that should have been the hint that they were lying after all I didn't know what the inside of a whale looked like.

What is your favourite misinterpretation of a holy book? Please leave your comment, I would love to know.

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Admitting you are wrong (The Original Lie)

Often times you will see that religious people will not admit they are wrong on issues where they are very clearly wrong. It is like a disease that makes you incapable of accepting a truth over a lie. This is something that occurs in everyday life as well, when a person gets caught in a lie and they have to propagate it further so that the initial lie eventually gets covered by layers of lies.

I often then get to wondering what is the original lie? In religion I would say the original lie is that there is no god! Everything in religion is based of the fact that there is a god, but if this is shown to be wrong then religion fails, on the other hand if it is proven correct then religion wins. So where is this evidence, and why do we have to continue to debate theists on religious issues when they cannot prove the original lie?

This is why I like science, it is not afraid to point out errors and fix false claims (lies). Here are just two very recent articles showing this to be true.
http://www.nature.com/news/disputed-results-a-fresh-blow-for-social-psychology-1.12902
In this article some scientists are failing to reproduce some very important results in psychology and are thus claiming that the initial results are flawed.
http://www.nature.com/news/why-the-tropics-are-an-evolutionary-hotbed-1.12846
This details new studies regarding the evolution of ant diversity in the tropics, and which current theories should be accepted.

If science can say they made a mistake, why is religion incapable? Religion after all is meant to be pure and just.

Tony Perkins

I recently posted about the American Family Association, and it got me thinking about what the Family Research Council has been up to recently, so went to their website and I found this article by Tony Perkins.

http://www.frc.org/washingtonupdate/military-loses-site-of-faith

Let me just say at the beginning that this article is full of lies, but then again what do we expect from Tony Perkins. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tony_Perkins_%28politician%29). So I decided to take a look at his article Military Loses faith, after all it has a lot of links to news sources, which surely should be correct. Anyway the whole story starts with the claim that the government had been blocking the Southern Baptist Churches website when using D.O.D. servers. However this was a mistake and Tony does well to point out that this was a mistake...congrats Tony

On an interesting side note the site was blocked as it had malware that the D.O.D. filters detected as a threat, why would this website have malware. Its a good christian site why would they want your information, or what ever else reason they may be using it for. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malware)

"Under President Obama, the military bans prayer at funerals, but builds Wiccan firepits at the Air Force Academy. "
So I went to the link and guess what the military is just affording Wiccans the same rights as christians to practise their religion. So, why does this irritate Tony as they are not stopping christians practising their religion. So here we have some really misleading information, and after using a google search I can still not find any news link to the fact that prayer is being banned at military funerals.

"It tells soldiers to stay away from religious websites, while its missile defense staff spends hours surfing pornography at work. It tears down crosses in Afghanistan, but lets soldiers march in uniform in gay pride parades."
Firstly it does not condone its staff surfing porn sites at work, that's why the D.O.D. has filters on their servers, and in the link I never saw any mention of the army saying don't look at religious websites. Lies, lies, lies. It then continues to say the army tears down crosses in Afghanistan, well Tony must have thought I would not click this link..... as it leads to the same page about missile staff surfing porn. And finally Tony, why should military personal not be allowed to march in gay pride parades in uniform? Oh that's right you are a homophobe, but if you really want this then military personal should not be allowed to march for anything but official military business.

"After five years, the administration's intent is clear: to disarm the military of its biggest weapon and its greatest source of strength--Faith." 
No, I would say its greatest source of strength is science (i.e. stealth, nuclear warheads, biological and chemical weapons).... stop lying Tony!

So is this an organisation or better yet... is this a person to trust?