William M. Briggs

Statistician to the Stars!

This Week In Doom: Crunchy Yummy Babies And A New Circle Of Hell

At a Planned Parenthood auction.

At a Planned Parenthood auction.

There’s not much to enjoy about this week’s doom, except to note that things are speeding up. Perhaps we need a pseudo-quantified measure of our acceleration into the abyss?

Crunchy Yummy

From the Center for Inquiry’s (the group that used to be CSICOP) Cause & Effect Friday email:

Fighting Back Against the Scheme to Take Down Planned Parenthood

The religious right, in its zeal to take away women’s rights to make their own reproductive decisions, has long sought to bring about the end of Planned Parenthood, a vital organization that provides a wide variety of necessary health services, including HIV and cancer screenings, to millions of women. The latest manifestation of this campaign took the form of heavily doctored “undercover” videos that falsely purported to implicate Planned Parenthood in the selling of fetal body parts for profit. These deceptively edited videos have given religious right allies in Congress the fodder they seek to strike a potentially fatal blow to Planned Parenthood, with threats of legislation that would end all federal funding to this important organization.

As skeptics who believe in the importance of facts, we want to help make it clear that these video “stings” are ideological propaganda, and their claims have no basis in reality. Fetal tissue, freely donated to medical research by fully informed patients, has long provided incredible possibilities for discovering treatments for some of the cruelest diseases that afflict human beings, such as Parkinson’s. Under current law, such tissue cannot be sold, but “reasonable payments associated with the transportation, implantation, processing, preservation, quality control, or storage” can be made. That was all these deceptive videos showed. The New York Times editorialized this week, “Lawmakers responding by promoting their own anti-choice agenda are rewarding deception and putting women’s health and their constitutionally protected rights at risk.”

Let’s not let this underhanded scheme undo a great organization that provides such crucial health services to so many women. Tell your Members of Congress to stop the attacks on Planned Parenthood, and to stand up for women’s health and women’s rights.

This rather depressed me. And you have to feel sorry for these folks. So determined are they to hold onto immorality, that any evidence, even that which is false, is sufficient. They eagerly jettison reason, logic, observation, everything. “Heavily doctored” videos forsooth! They create that absurdity—the videos are plain and easily seen to be so—and then use it to imply to themselves that “editing” means “lies.” This gives them excuse not to watch the videos—and thus it removes the need to confront evil.

For the sake of completeness: killing a life inside a mother is not a “health service”, it is the opposite. A “women’s rights to make their own reproductive decisions” cannot be made in isolation of the man who impregnated her, and the “right” to kill her child is the point in dispute. If, as should happen in a just country, Planned Parenthood disappeared, women would still be able to get mammographies etc.

Utilitarianism (a tenet of liberalism and libetarianism) must lead, and has led, to tyranny and evil: the ends cannot justify the means. The law does not and cannot decide what is evil or immoral. Of course, when the law fails to conform to human nature, as ours does, then the end must come. It is only a question of when. If Planned Parenthood gets away with this, which is likely, it will be much sooner than later.

Done With Dante

Dante’s Divine Comedy ‘offensive and should be banned’

The classic work should be removed from school curricula, according to Gherush 92, a human rights organisation which acts as a consultant to UN bodies on racism and discrimination.

Dante’s epic is “offensive and discriminatory” and has no place in a modern classroom, said Valentina Sereni, the group’s president…

“The Prophet Mohammed was subjected to a horrific punishment — his body was split from end to end so that his entrails dangled out, an image that offends Islamic culture,” she said.

Homosexuals are damned by the work as being “against nature” and condemned to an eternal rain of fire in Hell.

I’m offended that thinking Islam might be offended should justify that Dante should be banned. Therefore the UN may not ban. Homosexuals aren’t damned: those who commit homosexual acts, which are obviously against nature, and do not seek forgiveness are damned. As we all are unless we also ask for grace.

The Past Is History

Activist group shovels ground at Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest’s grave

On July 22 a group of protesters from the Commission on Religion and Racism (CRR) used a shovel and “dug up a patch of grass next to” Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest’s Memphis statue, saying they hope others “follow suit and dig him up.”

NAACP still pushing to sandblast Confederate leaders from Stone Mountain

Once the Confederate Battle Flag came down on the grounds of the South Carolina Capitol complex, the Left had won their great victory and everyone could go home and get on with their lives, right? (I’ll pause for a moment so everyone can finish laughing.) Of course not. Nothing is ever truly going to be enough, and the NAACP has been on a push for more than a week with a larger target in mind. A much, much larger target. They would like the 90 by 190 foot sculpture at Stone Mountain Park in Georgia sandblasted from the face of the mountain. Rising 400 feet above the ground, it’s the largest, highest outdoor relief sculpture in the world and depicts Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson.

Orwell says, “There was never a Confederacy.” Yet another symptom of believing “truth” is decided by the powerful.

One Party Shall Rule Them All

Ted Cruz on the Senate floor: Mitch McConnell’s a liar and our new majority is a cronyist fraud

Sample quote: “[This majority] does get things done, but it listens to one and only one voice: That is, the voice of the Washington cartel, of the lobbyists on K Street, of the big money and big corporations.” This guy is talking about his own caucus.

Prediction about the effect of this speech: none. There is also thus no reason to discuss the Iran deal.

7 Comments

  1. American history is still relatively new, and it is astonishing to see the memorials to the Revolutionary War the dot the East. That said, the sandblasting and removal of memorials and landmarks related to the Civil War has more than a whiff of how ISIS destroyed two historic mausoleums in Palmyra (with questions still looming whether the damage is more extensive) or how the Taliban destroyed the ancient Buddha statues (and others) pre 9-11-2001 in Afghanistan.

  2. Hot is cold.
    Black is white.
    Death is life.
    2+2=5
    We have always been at war with […fill in…]

    Here we have the decline of civilization (note: see Empire, Roman), brought about by the failure to educate and the knuckling under to the weak-minded and failure to speak and act in bold colors versus shaded pastels, and assert values.

    No one pushes back on this in the political arena. All are acting with cool, considerate deference to tyranny and insanity. Only those “freaks” of us out in “the heartland” who understand that to grow good wheat and corn one must till and nurture the soil (thee reap what thee sow). Consequences mean nothing to the political class and their dependent minions.

    Cultures are measured by the manner in which they care for the very young and the very old. Take note at what has been going on around us. To date, 55 million+ BABIES murdered in their mother’s wombs since the Supreme Court managed to divine the right to an abortion. Yet, the same people advocating for this “right” are in overwhelming numbers the same people who call the death penalty of vicious murderers an affront to humanity.

    Hypocrisy.
    Evil.

    It is all beyond the pale.

  3. Reproductive rights, huh? Conception is reproduction.

    We live in interesting times.

  4. Katie,

    Comparing confederate monument built after the confederacy lost the war to monument that have been in existence for thousands of years?????

    Good thing for you that being ridiculous doesn’t kill

  5. And Sylvain is very familiar with ridiculous.

  6. Sheri,

    In this department I must humbly admit that the conservative commentator on this are true masters.

    I must bow down to the masters of ridiculous.

  7. Sylvain: Nice try. Projection is the mainstay of liberals. Maybe branch out a bit. Oh, and comment on the topic perhaps? Oh, wait, Canada and England have been burning fetuses for heat for years. Kind of upset Oregon when they found out their medical waste from Canada contained fetus parts, but I guess now they can go back to buying the blobs of tissue since Planned Parenthood has introduced that depravity to the USA. Seems fetus parts are also sold in Canada, thought there seemed to be some uncertainty as to the veracity of the tale. Kind of like here in the good ole USA where someone gets caught with their hands in the cookie jar and immediately screams “Fire” in the hopes of taking the heat off, so to speak. We’re not alone in our insanity.

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