Everything is Terrible


Your next bright idea


Philips announced a new bulb today that claims it won’t bother you like other green lights that don’t give off the same warm glow as old incandescents.

The fact is, though, that we need to retire old bulbs, and if you haven’t started using greener bulbs, I hope you do soon. From the announcement:

12 watt EnduraLED light bulb, the industry’s first LED replacement for a 60 watt incandescent light bulb. Shown for the first time here at the Lightfair International tradeshow, it marks an important breakthrough in the use of LED lighting technology in everyday applications.  Consumers will now have an LED alternative to the most commonly used incandescent bulb, which will deliver up to 80% energy savings and last 25 times longer than its century-old predecessor.

Not news but worth spreading … Intelligent Design: Scientifically and Religiously Bankrupt

As if any of you were sitting on your hands waiting for the results, but Michael Zimmerman, Ph.D. published a piece in HuffPo (of all places) about hammering the last (and final to the tenth power) nail in Intelligent Design’s coffin. You can read the article here.

Why are there still people who are confused about how unintelligent the idea of Intelligent Design is?

The supposed nail in the coffin comes from University of California-Irvine biologist John Avise. From the article:

The latest attack appeared in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS) and provides conclusive evidence that the design of the human genome is incredibly imperfect, or, in other words, very far from being intelligently structured …

[Avise’s] focus “is on a relatively neglected category of argument against ID and in favor of evolution: the argument from imperfection, as applied to the human genome.”

I’m not sure this has been neglected. It’s been one of the major criticisms of ID for some time.

More from the article (emphasis mine):

Not surprisingly, Darwin had something to say about this anti-intellectual position as well. In The Descent of Man, Darwin wrote, “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, and not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science.”

In calling for enhanced science literacy, most major scientific organizations, including the National Academy of Sciences (in the US) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, have made it clear that ID has no scientific underpinnings and that promoting it so blurs the line between science and non-science as to make the former almost meaningless.

Religious organizations have also recognized the paucity of intellectual content embodied in ID — and the damage that it can do to religion as well as science. The United Methodist Church, for example, at its 2008 General Conference, resoundingly adopted the following motion: “The United Methodist Church goes on record as opposing the introduction of any faith-based theories such as Creationism or Intelligent Design into the science curriculum of our public schools.”

For religion to accept the concept of intelligent design would mean embracing the concept of the “God of the Gaps,” a religiously vacuous idea in which adherents turn to God for an explanation for that which science cannot explain. As science advances, the “gaps” become smaller and smaller and God is relegated to a progressively less interesting role.

From both a scientific and a religious perspective, intelligent design is dead and buried. All that’s left is to spread the word about its demise.

So spread the word, dear readers.

Science Friction, Creationism in the classroom Circa 1996

What’s scary about this video is how similar I used to be to these students. Oh, to go back and get some actual science training rather than the loads of ignorant bullshit I was fed as a teen.

The payoff is tenfold at the very end of the video. It’s a must watch.

You can cut through the ignorance and irony with a spoon.

Dayton, Tennessee – Clip from the BBC1 documentary ‘Science Friction: Creation’ circa 1996

In case you were confused … this is what a terrorist looks like …

It looks like a white, bald politician from Florida, that’s what one looks like.

From CBS News:

Dan Fanelli, a Florida Republican hoping to emerge from a competitive Republican primary field to challenge Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson, has released an ad in which he appears to argue that the United States should engage in racial profiling to fight terror.

“Does this look like a terrorist?” he asks in the spot, pointing at a white-haired white man in a tie. Then a darker-skinned man in a black t-shirt enters the frame as Fanelli asks, “or this?”

“It’s time to stop this political correctness and the invasion of our privacy,” he says. He then goes on to make an apparent joke about how he wouldn’t mind being pulled out of line at the airport if “a good looking, ripped guy without much hair was flying airplanes into the twin towers.”

The Washington Post’s Greg Sargent, who first flagged the spot, interviewed Fanelli about it. The candidate, a pilot, insisted the spot wasn’t intended to suggest that people with darker skin are more likely to be terrorists. The point, he said, was that people from countries like Iran and Iraq require more security.

Somewhat reposted from Cynical C