63 COMMENTS

  1. Oh, yes indeed Jabarkis, this particular brand religionists avail themselves of the products of science and technology, having invented or discovered nothing to speak of themselves for a thousand years, and put them to murderous use to prevent their own societies advancing, whilst at the same time condemning those who enabled the world to beneifit from the fruits of  The Enlightenment, The Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution.  

    That is why they cannot, at present in any case, be negotiated with, since they have nothing to offer the world except a medieval backward looking mindset, which needs to be resisted at all costs.

    And sadly, America now has its own home grown and increasing number of ignoramuses.

  2. It’s being suggested that the space jump was one big advertisement for a drinks company. Meanwhile the Trussell Trust (a Christian organisation) was busy filling more boxes with free/donated food to give to hungry families in the UK. I guess what you see all depends on where you look.

  3. I can barely think of any more pointless accomplishment than that drop. It was basically a jackass stunt.

    I don’t know what I would use though as science’s crowning achievement that week.

    But here is one that cheered me no end:

    On 2012-10-16 the BC Government announced it planned to release 1000 free on-line university text books. This is wonderful in so many ways:

    cost saving for students.
    completely up to date texts.
    no more dragging about 10 lbs (4.54 kg) of texts each day.
    BC offers a free gift of education to the world, to anyone who wants to learn who can beg, borrow or steal Internet access. (details are not released, so I might not get this)
    saved trees.
    available anywhere there is an ebook reader, computer, Internet access or DVD reader.
    electronically searchable, searchable on Google.
    impervious to rain damage, theft, loss, wear and tear.Oh how I wish we had this when I was going to UBC!

  4. Notice the security in London around this poor girl. It says that there are men walking the streets of London who would gladly finish the job that mercifully failed in that wretched country of Pakistan.

  5. Jackass stunts often have amazing benefits to science. Regardless of the futility of a human being falling down, large amounts of research needed to be conducted into protecting someone in those conditions, surviving the fall, and getting there in the first place.

    Don’t dismiss people who want to do something impossible and pointless; they advance science by redefining ‘impossible’ in the proces.

  6. Unfortunately I don’t think I will see an end to this religious idiocy in my lifetime, which is quite depressing. You can’t help thinking what bloody act they;(all inc ) will carry out next in the name of some mythical figure. :(

  7. “I can barely think of any more pointless accomplishment than that drop. It was basically a jackass stunt.”

    Actually, no, there IS a point to this.  NASA has been concerned for many years about how to get humans back from orbiting spacecraft, in an emergency.  Not sure I would like to be the first to jump (with a downward push of some sort) from the International Space Station.  Well, maybe, if they convince me there was a good chance I would survive.  Make a fantastic movie.

  8. When John Lennon and Yoko Ono squirmed around on the floor in a bag their point was that pretty well any activity, no matter how inane, was a hell of a lot better than waging war. In the same way any stunt, no matter how crazy, is better than the pointless acts of gratuitous horror and stupidity constantly perpetuated by religion. And this was no mere jackass stunt but another sentence written about the nature of humans, not least the nature of human courage – not to mention the science spinoffs mentioned by Plu and Rod the Farmer.

  9. Rod,

    I think the problem you encounter when you jump out of the space station is not so much the height, but it is the large tangential speed you have, which is about 27500 km / h. You have to get rid of this speed somehow. Reentry vehicles do this by bumping  into the atmosphere at a shallow angle and let friction do the slowing-down work. A lot of heat is generated this way, because there is much mass to slow down.
    The balloon, where the jump was made from, was not moving tangentially, so there was only free fall. Apparently with speeds low enough to avoid hazardous temperatures.

  10. Unfortunately I don’t think I will see an end to this religious idiocy in my lifetime, which is quite depressing. You can’t help thinking what bloody act they;(all inc ) will carry out next in the name of some mythical figure. :(

  11. Dear Science, where do you think I got the gun from?

    That’s right: from your bastard son, technology. Your hands are just as dirty as mine.

    Your brother in arms (alms?), Religion.

    P.S. Drop any more bombs on Hiroshima recently?

  12. hmmm … perhaps it should have said:  “dear religion, today i used science for seeing a man safely back to the surface of the earth, while you used science to shoot an innocent girl in the head”

  13. Sorry but this is a misnomer and a strawman.
    Science/technology may very well have been the ‘how’ the girl was shot (with a gun) but that is NOT the ‘WHY’.
    The ‘WHY’ is far more important and primary than the ‘how’.

  14. Dear Religion,
    We  just exist.  We don’t make up rules to justify our beliefs because we don’t have any beliefs.  If you have a beef with the use of science and technology, than talk to Ethics.  I feel you’ll still come out on the moral short end of that conversation because Ethics will admit to making mistakes and correct itself.
    Yours truly,
    Science and Technology.

  15. If people require religion to motivate them to do good, how pure are their motives? Do we do good because of simple human decency or because someone (i.e. god) tells us we should (and offers rewards and threatens punishments)?

  16. Graham1
    Notice the security in London around this poor girl. It says that there are men walking the streets of London who would gladly finish the job that mercifully failed in that wretched country of Pakistan.

    The best of luck to them. Don’t tell anybody, but between me and thee unless there has been a major – but unnoticed geological shift in Britain the Queen Elizabeth Hospital is still in Birmingham. And it has a permanent high-security status as it is Britains leading hospital for treating severely injured soldiers.

  17. Dear Religion,

    Please excuse our dirty hands. They got that way because we had to help mankind
    get so effective and efficient in taking both individual life and massive numbers of lives
    that any one human, or group of humans would think long and hard about the cons-
    quences of either type of act, particularly the killing of massive numbers.

    How else to put a check  on the seemingly interminable development of the powers
    of Individual Nations that humans have needed you for in the past to create the illusion of
    safety and security—- and give them the needed time to build the sociocultural consensus
    that you could only dream about in your psalms and proverbs————–

    A wonderful ending without ever an apocalyptic end.

    We’ll continue to get our hands dirty, and then wash them, just as you try and do now.

    The difference is, we’ll continue to do so, until you don’t need to have to any more.

    Your reluctant roommates for a while,

    Science and Technology

  18. Even the scientists might have been religious, but they needn’t be, and they were using science.

    And for the religious who performed good acts this week, 

    “Name me an ethical statement made or an action performed by a believer that could not have been made or performed by a non-believer.”

    What justification is there to deny girls the chance to go to school? In this case, it was religious.

  19. yep, they could easily have just snapped her neck, no science/technology required, but the reason “WHY” remains regardless…..the fact that technology made them lazy bastards is of no relevance…..correction, it probably saved her life at the end of the day, had they snapped her neck or stepped up a technological level and cut her head of with a blade, as they are prone to do, they would more than likely have gotten the job done.. So technology just might have made the difference on this particular occasion.

  20.  I feel you’ll still come out on the moral short end of that conversation because Ethics will admit to making mistakes and correct itself.

    Or Ethics might assert, “it’s not my fault you made me do it!”.

    “I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent.”

    Thomas Jefferson

  21. Dear Jersey Devil,

    Pakistan has open gun control laws. The reason people don’t have guns is because they’re poor and guns cost an entire year’s worth of wages in purchase alone. (Yes, average income is less then $1000 per year there). It has nothing to with their government. Google is your friend.

  22. “Dear accommodating and devout xtian Scientists. We, by divine Authority of the ‘all-knowing one’, wish most sincerely for the warm invitation for TEA - at the LHC”. . . .
    (re, Ms.Vict.Gill - BBC 15th Oct’12. BBC Religion and Ethics (sic) :-
    “Some of Europe’s most prominent scientists have opened a debate with philosophers and theologians over the
    origins of everything. The event, in Geneva, Switzerland, is described as a search for “common
    ground” between religion and science over how the Universe began. The conference was called by Cern, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, in the wake of its Higgs boson discovery.
    Cern is the home of the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest particle accelerator, situated beneath the French-Swiss border region near Geneva.
    The first speaker at the conference was Andrew Pinsent, research director of
    the Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion at Oxford University. He said that science risked “trying to turn society into a machine” if it did not engage with religion and philosophy.
    “Science in isolation is great for producing stuff, but not so good for producing ideas,” he told the BBC.
    “Einstein began by asking the kinds of questions that a child would ask, like what would it be like to ride on a beam of light.” That, Dr Pinsent said, was what science should return to”.

  23. I hear you roedygreen but it’s a very poor attitude, how many seemingly pointless endeavours does it take to find out something fantastic?

    Not being able to imagine what might come of it says exactly nothing. I’m certainly glad CERN managed to invent the touch screen while on the way to the Higgs, are you or couldn’t you imagine it either? How about the Aussie who discovered WiFi while looking for something completely different, was it some kind of Hawkins radiation?

    Poo pooing is tempting but remembering all the sideways advances keeps my tongue firmly behind the speed of my brain.

  24. I did not say any such thing.  My complaint is with Jackass nature of the drop. He was very lucky he did not kill himself.  He was a show off kid. That was not a science experiment. I don’t think we should glorify it as such.   It was closer to sticking your bum out the window of a car while driving at 200 MPH.  Risking your life needlessly is not the same thing as exploring something unusual.

  25. Sticking your bum out of the window of a car at 200 MPH sounds perfectly safe if you’re not driving. Jumping from near space, or exploring something unusual, while on the radio to the last person to do it sounds risky but so are many medical trials. How is “life risk” the deciding factor?

    You said it was worthless, I said I didn’t know. Who knows – still not you. Glorifying war sounds bad, cheering on a high jump is of little consequence, why would that concern you? 

    I hope we gain some knowledge from it whatever his personality or colour of underpants he was wearing. These are factors that should not effect the usefulness of the data.

    What’s your thoughts in the other direction, is James Cameron a Jackass too? He was certainly risking his life, what’s the difference? Is it safe to say that he was at higher risk?

  26. Felix Baumgartener is the first man to break the sound barrier. That is an achievement on its own. He also broke three records: the highest freefall jump, the fastest freefall speed and the highest balloon flight by a human. Now as far as it goes, that is some achievement.

    Former NASA Astronaut Leroy Chiao, speaking on CNN television, said he believed elements of the pressure suit used by Baumgartner would be “incorporated into future pressure suits that are used in spacecraft.”

    So not a complete waste of time acting the jackass then? In other news, the depths of the oceans and the slopes of the worlds mountains are littered with the bodies of dead jackasses I guess?

    ‘Mythbusters’ or ‘Brainiac’ anybody?

  27.  You said it was worthless, I said I didn’t know. Who knows – still not you.

    Me, me, me, me……I know, I know, I know….it wasn’t worthless by any stretch of any ones imagination…(see my comment why)… and if someone is having to stretch there imagination, they just ain’t getting it yet.

  28. Thanks Amos, I am having trouble convincing some posters to use their imagination a little more! ;-( Seems obvious that me not knowing or understanding something is not a factor in it’s potential usefulness! 

    Still waiting to hear if James Cameron is a Deep Sea Jackass – a rare breed!

  29. That may be true. But a few hundred years from now, when the ice caps have melted and every land mass on Earth is completely submerged by water, and humanity and every other non-aquatic species are but a distant memory, who will be to blame: you or me?

    My crimes tend to affect only human animals. In fact one could even argue that certain other species have reason to be extremely grateful to me. For instance, I’m so fond of pigs that I’ve laid down laws proscribing the eating of my favorite critter. (I probably shouldn’t gloat, but I do find it amusing that many in my largest group of followers spend so much time condemning sodomites while being unaware that they themselves will be spending eternity on the receiving end of my buddy Satan’s pitchfork because they couldn’t resist the taste of bacon. Bwahaha, as we supervillains say.)

    Sorry, Science, I got sidetracked there. My point was that even though I have been and continue to be responsible for much of the human suffering in the world, I maintain that in Darwinian terms I’ve been a greater cause for good than you have or ever will be. As Karl Marx said, I am the opium of the people. The people in question may be oppressed and lead miserable, downtrodden lives, but as long as they stick to my rules they get to go on screwing and spreading their genes, even if they do so in filthy hovels. You’re the sonafabitch that gives them atom bombs and other means to destroy themselves.

    Fondest regards, your partner in crime, R.

  30. Really religion, well I never…

     I maintain that in Darwinian terms I’ve been a greater cause for good than you have or ever will be.

    That’s quite an assertion and a half…I suppose it is just what one would expect from religion I  reckon. I’d like to see how you’d go about proving the “you have”, and how you could possibly know the “will be”.

    As Karl Marx said, I am the opium of the people. 

    Erm…so often quoted out of context as it is….

    “Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people”

    …just saying.

    …but as long as they stick to my rules they get to go on screwing and spreading their genes,…

    Point is, by adhering to your archaic rules, the screwing would be limited and the gene spreading restricted….just as well not too many abide by your rules then, even if they say they do.

     You’re the sonafabitch that gives them atom bombs and other means to destroy themselves.

    Ahem…used twice….and saved millions more than than your ethos would have caused if the atom bomb had not been developed or even used . Incidentally, nuclear fusion has been used more for the betterment of man than the detriment.

    Now will ya for goodness sake get off yer knees and do something constuctive instead of whinging.

    Regards,

    Science 

  31. Eternal punishment for tasting some bacon… yeah… I think that’s a fantastic clarification of the problem.  Not as elegant as picking up stones (I don’t recall science being used to make these) to kill adulterers, but definately in the same mentality range.  The rope didn’t hang uppity girls and gays in islamic cultures as it didn’t hang blacks in the U.S.  People did that.  Very messed up people with very messed up beliefs, some of which are religious in nature, did this.  The fact that you don’t understand why the whole eternal punishment thing is wrong is what gets me far more than the rationale behind dropping the bomb.  Beyond the ‘because I said’, no reason or explanation for eternal punshiment is ever given.  Isn’t that a bit odd?  I find it extremely odd that followers don’t question this.
    You’re still misunderstanding what science is.  Science is only a tool for defining our environment.  It is neither good not bad, even though its application can be.  Science didn’t create the atom bomb.  People did with the knowledge aquired from science and with various reasons.  Other people used that atom bomb.  Again, for various reasons.  If not the bomb, then the gun.  If not the gun, then the knife.  If not the knife, then the club.  If not the club, then the stone.  No stone… then we’re back to dirtying our own hands instead of using a tool as an extension.
    In the end, it’s about giving us the best run for survival and a higher quality of life.  Using science has been far more valuable than religion has AND it doesn’t require us to lie in order to achieve it.

  32. Thanks for the clarification, Plu.  So it would appear that the obvious difference in fire power between the Taliban and the locals is economic and not legilative.  Which begs the question, who is financing these Taliban thugs?  They should be arrested for conspriracy  Easier said then done, I know. 

    One thing that is clear to me now.  These Taliban can not be reasoned with or bargained with.  They must be dealt with using force.  Unfortunate but I don’t see another way. 

  33.  “With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion. ”  Steve Weinberg.

     

    It’s interesting to compare Weinberg’s quote to the original one this discussion started with.  Weinberg’s I think would provoke thought in your average religious person as it cleverly combines a couple of serious criticisms of religion in a pithy package.  The original one is a cheap shot  which will get a giggle from you and me but will just irritate religious people.  

    Michael

  34. Grow up. Hitler was anti christain anti dew antie Muslim. Look how many he killed. How many did religious orgainisations save the lives of last week they fed thousands of orphaned children gave medical attension to thausands for free. Get a life haters of religion.

  35. So once again great insight. We are talking a tiny tiny percentage of a religion with millions upon millions of followers who did this or would even accept what was done. How many people were murdered Robbed and raped in the same week by people who had no religious beliefs. And yet some one is ridiculing a nearly a third of the earths population because the don’t eat pork. Thought this site would have attrackedu egged educated people than this.

  36. Dear Religion,
                        this Sunday I went to church. I was at work in the lightning rod that saved one of your congregations from being frazzled to a crispy lump.
                        Why do you still hate me so?
                        All the best,
                        Science.

  37. Johng78
    Grow up. Hitler was anti christain anti dew antie Muslim. Look how many he killed.

    Really !!!!  – It looks like you are thinking with the whimsicalities of “faith” rather than looking up evidence and using adult reasoning.

    Hitler was a Catholic and promoted by his propagandists as “The New Luther”!

    http://nobeliefs.com/images/De…  – Deutsche Christen Badge
     Hitler and mother with the Mutterkreuz   -   http://nobeliefs.com/mementoes… 

       
    The Deutsche Christen (German Christians) were a German Protestantism movement aligned towards antisemetic principles of Nazism.
    The DC were sympathetic to Hitler’s goal of uniting the individual Protestant churches into a single Reich church.

    The DC was first formed in 1931 and the flag was flown during marches and demonstrations. – http://nobeliefs.com/images/De

    German Christian Movement Badge -   http://nobeliefs.com/mementoes

  38. Johng78
    Thought this site would have attrackedu egged educated people than this.

    Johng78
    Grow up. Hitler was anti christain anti dew antie Muslim.

    You mean like educated people who can actually look up facts, write sentences, and spell the words they are using?

  39. And how few starving children would there be with family planning?  Religion creates problems then fundraises on how compassionate they are in sort of cleaning up the mess they started.  I will grow up when you get real.

  40. The Catholic Church is still manufactoring healing relics like the tissue samples taken from Pope John Paul II, yet has lots of hospitals for back up.   They don’t hate science, they just don’t get sceptics to worship the asses of the leadership.

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