Mailvox: hardly the only one

Someone, presumably tcw, writes:

What surprise…. Ban the only atheist on the board so that the echo chamber can resume and ideas aren’t challenged.

Nicely done, Vox.

Right, I’m directly taking on the three leading public atheists, but I’m quivering in terror before the lunatic meanderings of a solitary Internet pest.

While tcw was far from the only non-Christian on this blog, he was the only annoying one. I don’t care if someone is a Buddhist, a zetecist or one of the four last remaining Shakers, so long as he abides by the basic rules of this blog. Tcw was given plenty of opportunities to modify his behavior, unlike others who have received similar warnings and have not only remained but even gained the respect of the regulars here, he refused to do so.

Tcw wasn’t banned without cause, he was banned because he was repeatedly and demonstrably intellectually dishonest, continually evasive and finally, refused to provide direct answers to specific questions after being warned not to do so. I don’t care if people agree with me or not, but I refuse to tolerate that sort of behavior here. It’s not interesting, it’s not informative and it’s not going to happen here.

Who fears science?

In which it is proved the idea that the godless care more about others is nothing but blind and unsupportable faith. When one actually applies science to the question and experiments to obtain real data, the empirical evidence clearly shows that the godless are twice as indifferent to others as the faithful:

To test what types of people give more, “20/20” went to two very different parts of the country, with contrasting populations: Sioux Falls, S.D. and San Francisco, Calif. The Salvation Army set up buckets at the busiest locations in each city — Macy’s in San Francisco and Wal-Mart in Sioux Falls. Which bucket collected more money?

Sioux Falls is rural and religious; half of the population goes to church every week. People in San Francisco make much more money, are predominantly liberal, and just 14 percent of people in San Francisco attend church every week. Liberals are said to care more about helping the poor; so did people in San Francisco give more?

It turns out that this idea that liberals give more…is a myth…. the single biggest predictor of whether someone will be charitable is their religious participation. Religious people are more likely to give to charity, and when they give, they give more money: four times as much.

We are the chunky

There’s a choice we’re making, we’re stuffing our fat faces:

Africa, a continent usually synonymous with hunger, is falling prey to obesity. It’s a trend driven by new lifestyles and old beliefs that big is beautiful. Ask Nodo Njobo, a plump hairdressing assistant. She is coy about her weight, but like many African women, proud of her “big bum.” She says she’d like to be slimmer, but worries how her friends would react….

More than one-third of African women and a quarter of African men are estimated to be overweight, and the World Health Organization predicts that will rise to 41 percent and 30 percent respectively in the next 10 years.

Some years ago, PJ O’Rourke demonstrated that starvation in Africa was a political matter, not a matter of drought or a lack of agriculture. I wonder, though, what he would have made of how the fat gene and the overactive thyroid condition that causes obesity in so many Americans – through no fault of their own, of course – managed to migrate to Africa in the previous decade.

The greased pan frying in the night
As I grow restless waiting for some stuffed and deep-fried calamari
You’d think I had a parasite
Sure as Kilimanjaro rises like a flan above the Serengeti
I seek to eat what’s in my sight, washed down by a hot and buttered rum.

It’s gonna take a lot to drag me away from food
There’s nothing that could ever change my attitude
I bless the cooks down in Africa
Gonna take some time to eat the things we never had

Post-Christianity isn’t atheist

Graphic support for Chesterton’s assertion that those who believe in nothing will believe in anything. It’s interesting to see that the most atheistic country isn’t one of the Scandinavian countries, as Sam Tzu would have us believe, but France, the republic founded on the Terror.

Although I’m not sure the notion of the Norse bringing back “the blood eagle” is the best idea, there ain’t no party like a Viking funeral party.