That didn’t take long

Richard Dawkins comes out as a eugenicist:

A leading international anti-religion crusader and supporter of Darwinian theory, Dr. Richard Dawkins, has said that the pseudo-science of eugenics that drove the Nazi regime’s genocidal project “may not be bad.”

Since the end of the second world war, the name of eugenics, the social philosophy that the human species or particular races ought to be improved by selective breeding or other forms of genetic manipulation, is one that conjures instant images of the Nazi death camps and “racial hygiene” programs.

In a letter to the editor of Scotland’s Sunday Herald, Dawkins argues that the time has come to lay this spectre to rest. Dawkins writes that though no one wants to be seen to be in agreement with Hitler on any particular, “if you can breed cattle for milk yield, horses for running speed, and dogs for herding skill, why on Earth should it be impossible to breed humans for mathematical, musical or athletic ability?”

Yes, I am vastly amused by this. It’s all just so predictable. And while I’m surprised that Dawkins has gotten so carried away by his success that he is finally daring to openly proclaim a more rational atheism, I’m not at all shocked by his conclusions. I merely wonder how long it will take for him to realize that he also lacks any rational basis to avoid exterminating pesky and unwanted minorities.

Seriously, on what basis does the atheist prosecute the individual who digs up a few kilos of rotting flesh in order to have sex with it? Trespassing? We’ve already settled that atheists have no objection to who puts what where so long as all parties a) aren’t children, and, b) consent. So, in that case, what does it matter if the lifeless random collection of atoms once happened to be human or plastic?

Atheism always leads the thinking individual to nihilism. The fact that most atheists aren’t nihilists isn’t a credit to atheism, it’s more a testimony to how few individuals are capable of reason or even understanding the logical consequences of their basic assumptions.

Oh, and Richard, the answer to your question is that music lessons are provided with the consent of the individual, or at least the parent. Breeding heavily implies, (although it does not absolutely require), a lack of consent on the part of the individuals involved. Of course, if you don’t believe that Man possesses God-given rights because there is no God to give them, then there’s no rational reason why one shouldn’t treat men and women like dogs.

UPDATE – Here’s Dawkin’s actual letter. While I always prefer the original source, the Herald link wasn’t working when I first posted.

The second thing we do

… after killing all the lawyers is to kill all the idiot accountants:

Fans of the fantasy films were dismayed by an e-mail, detailing a dispute between Jackson and the New Line film studio, which the New Zealander sent to a website devoted to matters Tolkien.

It contained explosive news that the most lucrative franchise in Hollywood history after Star Wars will return with a Lord of the Rings prequel. A big-budget version of The Hobbit is also set for production.

But Jackson, a devoted Tolkien fan who battled to bring his vision of Rings to the screen, will not be involved. The director said that he had been removed from the project by New Line. “We have always assumed that we would be asked to make The Hobbit and possibly this second film, back to back, as we did the original movies,” Jackson’s e-mail to TheOneRing.net fansite read.

I hate this sort of thing. I loathe executives who attempt to shaft overperforming employees, partners and contractees, it’s so stupid and short-sighted. Why work hard and exceed your goals if you’re merely going to be cheated of your merited rewards?

New Line had better come to its senses, otherwise they’ll end up losing more money than they ever had to gain by monkeying around with Jackson’s payouts.

It’s for your own good

Of course, this could never happen here:

In a statement yesterday Lord Falconer, the Lord Chancellor of England has warned doctors that they may face prison sentences if they refuse to starve and dehydrate patients to death. Criminal charges of assault could be laid against doctors or nurses who refuse to allow patients to die, even by removal of food and hydration tube.

The Labour government unveiled its new guidelines for doctors to follow the Mental Capacity Act that is to come into effect next spring.

The guidelines instruct doctors that a patient’s “advanced decision,” what is often called a “living will,” that includes a request for cessation of medical treatment must be followed even if it means the patient will die. To fail to do so, in other words, to take action to keep a patient alive, could result in criminal charges or heavy fines.

The government’s guidelines instruct doctors, “If you are satisfied that an advance decision exists which is valid and applicable, then not to abide by it could lead to a legal claim for damages or a criminal prosecution for assault.”

British courts, in conjunction with jurisdictions around the world, have determined that it is sometimes in the patient’s best interest to be dehydrated to death by removal of feeding and hydration tubes. In many parts of the world, including Canada, food and hydration is considered “medical treatment” and as such can be, and frequently is, withheld on the grounds that it constitutes “extraordinary treatment”.

One wonders why this same government is simultaneously jailing for life two individuals who neglected to provide such “extraordinary treatment” to an 8-year old girl, with the result you’d expect from the dehydration-starvation double-whammy. On the other hand, perhaps I should keep such thoughts to myself, lest I provide the post-natal abortionists with any nefarious new ideas.