Pharyngula

Archives for September, 2010

Lately, a certain faction within CFI (not the whole organization — I know several staff who disagree) has taken it upon itself to slam the Gnu Atheists as a gang of crude louts who know nothing about religion — they’ve criticized Richard Dawkins, and I’ve heard that both Jerry Coyne and I were named in…

I lied. Lied, lied, lied. You knew I was being sarcastic — there’s no way I’m going to give Stuart Pivar a pass. Pivar has published in a rather obscure journal, The International Journal of Astrobiology, which is obviously going to contain a fair amount of speculation…but his article doesn’t fit the subject matter of…

Let’s be nice to bad science now

I have been chastised by William Connolley; he thinks I was too “strident” in condemning that lousy paper about Moses parting the sea with a fortuitous wind. I disagree, obviously. It was a bad paper, and I gave the reasons why it was so awful: it was poorly justified, it was not addressing an even…

Mary’s Monday Metazoan: Targeted for death

One can almost pity the brown snake. They’re a dreadfully persistent invasive species, but they’re going to try and exterminate them by paradropping poison-laced mice into the jungles of Guam.

Going rogue

It’s a dreary phrase when Sarah Palin says it, but it’s true for Citizen Radio: they’ve gone independent, but are still making podcasts with that sharp combination of comedy and interviews. The latest episode features Rachel Maddow. Yeah, you liberals need to listen to it.

Guess-a-Nobel!

It’s a contest: the Nobel prizes will be announced next week, and right now you can make guesses about who will win and submit them for a chance at prizes. Let’s see…Michael Egnor for Physiology/Medicine, Dembski for physics, and Behe for Chemistry… No, only guess those if you want to guarantee that you’ll lose.

Bad evolution

There have been no science fiction movies that I know of that accurately describe evolution. None. And there have been very few novels that deal with it at all well. I suspect it’s because it makes for very bad drama: it’s so darned slow, and worst of all, the individual is relatively unimportant and all…

The science media make my head hurt

First, read this parody of science journalism. It’s the template for just about every science story you’ll find in a newspaper, and it’s so depressing. Second, imagine something even worse. Hint: it’s the media’s coverage of every scientific “controversy” you might think of. It takes a few of the tropes mentioned in the parody, like…

We are not #1, and we are getting worse

Be depressed. The reports are in, and American education sucks and is hurting our economy. Stagnant scientific education imperils U.S. economic leadership, says a report by leading business and science figures. Released Thursday at a congressional briefing attended by senators and congressmen of both parties, the report updates a 2005 science education report that led…

So that’s their strategy

Minnesota should be embarrassed to have two organizations targeting our elections with the goal of blocking the possibility of gay marriage. The Nincompoops Opposing Marriage (NOM) is campaigning for the Rethuglican candidate for governor, Tom Emmers, while the Catholic church is sending out DVDs whining about gays. But they’re both following the same playbook: they’re…