Mendocino Country & Environs
Gene Logsdon (RIP)
The Contrary Farmer
William Edelen (RIP)
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Ingersoll - Foundations of Faith
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Seven Myths of Industrial Agriculture
Dave Smith ~ Editor/Publisher
...a local history of community character...
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- TODD WALTON: Just Us
- Holy Horrors: Witch-Hunts…
- Rational Suicide: Philip Nitschke launches ‘militant’ campaign for unrestricted adult access to euthanasia…
- Christian Crock: Most American Christians Believe They’re Victims of Discrimination…
- Sunday Song: Heaven is Satellite by the Hooters…
- Ingersoll: Is Suicide a Sin?
- Mo Jesus…
- The End of the American Century…
- TODD WALTON: Two Love Stories
- An Animated Introduction to George Orwell…
- james Houle on ‘Atheist Muslims’ could be the key to defeating Islamic terror…
- james Houle on ‘Atheist Muslims’ could be the key to defeating Islamic terror…
- Paul Wegman Taylor on ‘Atheist Muslims’ could be the key to defeating Islamic terror…
- james Houle on ‘Atheist Muslims’ could be the key to defeating Islamic terror…
- tom sparks on Wow Music…
- Paul Wegman Taylor on TODD WALTON: Solar Postage Socialist
- Paul Wegman Taylor on The Coming Privatization of Everything…
- Randy LeJeune on Christian Crock: An Insider’s View — The Dark Rigidity of Fundamentalist Rural America…
- izzy on Christian Crock: An Insider’s View — The Dark Rigidity of Fundamentalist Rural America…
- truthspew on Christian Crock: An Insider’s View — The Dark Rigidity of Fundamentalist Rural America…
Independent News & Blog Feeds
- The Greater GoodWe’ve been picking up our neighbor’s Press Democrat while he is away in Idaho hunting elk. The headline article of the Sunday edition is about the shortage of rental properties in Mendocino and all over California and America due to so many people choosing to go the Air B&B route with their rental units rather than rent long term to locals.
- Nerve Gas Bosco: The ReloadBOSCO, the eternal curse. Frankly, we enjoyed the guy when he was an automatic Congressional vote for nerve gas, always waffled on offshore oil drilling, functioned as a total slave of corporate timber, and otherwise drew pay as a Congressman working steadily against the interests of most of his constituents. Back when people still read […]
- Redwood Classic NotesTHE 59TH ANNUAL Redwood Classic Basketball Tournament has come and gone, and I can say as a veteran of tournaments back to 1970, that the gym has never looked better, so good I thought maybe the school had hired a professional gym decorator, if there is such a thing. Nope. Superintendent Hutchins assured me that […]
- Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016Monsieur Bewley; Supes Notes; Little Dog; Woodhouse Released; Street Smarts; California Independence; Yesterday's Catch; LiquiGlide; Cupcaker; Principled Elector; Christmas Terror; Creative People; Pizzagate; Drought Bill; Mushroom Class; Alfred E Neuman; Library Events
- Boomtown, Flood Townby Neena Satija for The Texas Tribune and Reveal; Kiah Collier for The Texas Tribune; and Al Shaw for ProPublica Climate change will bring more frequent and fierce rainstorms to cities like Houston. But unchecked development remains a priority in the famously un-zoned city, creating short-term economic gains for some while increasing flood risks for everyone […]
- De Blasio Says ‘Enough is Enough’: Landlords Getting Big Tax Break Must Cap Rent Hikesby Cezary Podkul In his sharpest critique yet of scofflaw landlords, Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Tuesday it’s “outrageous” that thousands of New York City property owners accepted tax benefits from the city in exchange for limiting rent increases but did not live up to their obligations. “Enough is enough. Building owners who fail to comply will lose the be […]
- New Jersey Will No Longer Collect Loans From Families of Dead Studentsby Annie Waldman New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Monday signed into law a bill requiring the state’s student loan agency to forgive the loans of borrowers who die or become permanently disabled. Last July, an investigation from ProPublica and The New York Times found that New Jersey’s student loan agency aggressively sought repayment of loans with already […]
- When Memes Fail UsYes, there has been a major electoral upheaval, and it seems there are many confused people out there working under some pretty strange assumptions. But no, this isn’t as much of a shift as it may seem.
- A Merry MenagerieTucked in the golden, rolling hills just north of Vacaville, California, Menagerie Hill Ranch is a small, family-run alpaca ranch .
- After Flint Failure, EPA Refocuses Federal Drinking Water Role The lead contamination scandal that unraveled in Flint the last two years and the failure of local, state, and federal officials to address it brought drinking water safety to the forefront of U.S. public policy.
- The Greatest Science Books of 2016From the sound of spacetime to time travel to the microbiome, by way of polar bears, dogs, and trees.
- Toni Morrison on the Power of Language: Her Spectacular Nobel Acceptance Speech After Becoming the First African American Woman Awarded the Accolade"We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives."
- The End of the American CenturyI have a bone to pick with the Washington Post. A few days back, as some of my readers may be aware, it published a list of some two hundred blogs that it claimed were circulating Russian propaganda, and I was disappointed to find that The Archdruid Report didn’t make the cut. Oh, granted, I don’t wait each week for secret orders from Boris Badenov, the mock […]
- The Free Trade FallacyAs longtime readers of this blog know, it’s not uncommon for the essays I post here to go veering off on an assortment of tangents, and this week’s post is going to be an addition to that already well-stocked list. Late last week, as the aftermath of the recent election was still spewing all over the media, I was mulling over one likely consequence of the w […]
- German Would Be Making a Huge Mistake By Instituting a Ban on Full-Face Veils for Muslim WomenGerman chancellor Angela Merkel announced yesterday that she would support a ban on veils that hide the entire face of Muslim women "wherever it is legally possible," arguing that the full-face cover was "not appropriate" and went against cultural norms. This would be a tremendous mistake.
- Weather Channel Scientist Slams Breitbart for Using Her Image to Cast Doubt on Climate ChangeRight-wing propaganda website Breitbart recently posted an article downplaying the effects of global warming. That piece included a video featuring Weather Channel meteorologist Kait Parker, suggesting that her reporting backed up their conspiracy theory. She responded yesterday with a glorious takedown of their lies.
- Ghanaian Bishop Says He Has the Power to Make Your Penis Larger If You’ll Just Let Him Touch ItIf you really, really wish you had a bigger penis, here's some advice: When your pastor says he can help by touching you there, resist the urge to say yes.
- A Fox News Host Invited an Atheist to Church As He Promoted His Group’s Latest BillboardsYesterday, American Atheists' national program director Nick Fish appeared on Fox & Friends to discuss the group's latest billboards. The hosts wanted to know why Fish was so offended by Christmas and Christians -- he wasn't -- even using the opportunity to invite him to church.
- An Atheist and a Christian Discuss Whether Religion Leads to ViolenceIt's not often you see a working collaboration between a Christian theologian and an atheist, but Randal Rauser and Justin Schieber have found a way to make it work in their new book An Atheist and a Christian Walk into a Bar: Talking about God, the Universe, and Everything.It's an informal debate on faith, morality, and the universe.
- Should It Matter That HGTV Reality Show Hosts Belong To a Church That Opposes Marriage Equality?Chip and Joanna Gaines, stars of the HGTV reality show Fixer Upper, were recently "outed" by Buzzfeed's Kate Aurthur for belonging to a church that is anti same-sex marriage. The implication was that they shared the view and would possibly ban gay couples from appearing on their show. (HGTV later released a statement saying that they "don […]
- If “Nothing Fails Like Prayer,” Why Do People Keep at It?“If prayer actually worked, everyone would be a millionaire, nobody would ever get sick and die, and both football teams would always win.” –Ethan Winer The phrase “nothing fails like prayer” was coined in 1976 by secular activist, Ann Nicol … Continue reading →
- What the Bible Says about Prayer. Versus Reality.The Bible makes some rather bold claims about prayer. How well do they hold up? (Part 1 of a 4 part series). Does prayer—like it’s taught in biblical Christianity–actually work? That all depends on what you’re looking for. Prayer can … Continue reading →
- Demons of the Digital Divide: The Internet As a Fundamental Human Right in the Modern AgeBy Adi Chowdhury What is the Internet? Is the Web a tool? A hindrance? An impediment? A propeller of anti-social behavior? A path towards enhanced freedom and justice? An educator? Something we should further develop? Something we should repress? Something we should be worried about? As the administrator and author, I would like to… Continue reading Demons […]
- Injustice and Agony for Religious Minorities in BangladeshBy Adi Chowdhury Last Sunday, the 30th of October, was probably a regular day for most of us. Our day proceeded as usual, as we left our homes for work or school and returned home tired, only to dine well and drift off to sleep peacefully. On the other side of the story, last… Continue reading Injustice and Agony for Religious Minorities in Bangladesh
- The Cult of Before Stories: Desperate for Relevance.Bill Schnoebelen is one such storyteller. Once a popular figure in fundagelical Christianity, his narrative long ago lost its cachet. He's had to reinvent himself--but is finding that once someone's joined the Cult of Before Stories, that's really hard to do.The post The Cult of Before Stories: Desperate for Relevance. appeared first on Roll t […]
- Why Christian Art Sucks: BYU Boogaloo.We've noted in the past (extensively, really) that Christian media sucks. And their preferences for visual art are no exception. Waverly Giles tried to make something that was off the beaten track, something that might challenge the viewer a little more than the usual Olan Mills-style portrait sitting or awkward family photo, and she got smacked hard fo […]
- The Bible’s Attitude Toward the Life of the Mind“Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body. Here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind.” —Ecclesiastes Secularists like me became legitimately concerned when we first learned that our new president-elect selected billionaire right-wing megadonor Betsy DeVos to [Rea […]
- The Real Roots of Our BeliefsDo you find it frustrating to talk to religious people about their beliefs? Nonreligious people often have a hard time understanding their devout counterparts, so they engage them in the kinds of conversations that are meant to tease out the intellectual nuances in what they believe in order to better understand them. It doesn’t take [Read More...]The post T […]
- Watch Earth’s History Played Out on a Football Field
- How Cassini Will Begin Its Date With Death on SaturnBy Dennis Overbye It’s the beginning of a spectacular, almost circuslike end for NASA’s Cassini mission. For 12 years Cassini has been buzzing about Saturn, its rings and its moons. As a result we know that there are methane lakes on Titan and jets of water shooting from Enceladus, and the rings themselves have warps, ripples, hills twists and braids. Now th […]
- Trumping the WorldIn this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with journalist James Kirchick about the coming Trump presidency, liberalism vs illiberalism, fake news, Russia, Syria, Iran, and the future of American power. James Kirchick is a journalist and foreign correspondent currently based in Washington. He has reported from Southern and North Africa, the […]
- The Dawn of Artificial IntelligenceIn this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with computer scientist Stuart Russell about the challenge of building artificial intelligence that is compatible with human well-being.Stuart Russell is a Professor of Computer Science and Smith-Zadeh Professor in Engineering, University of California, Berkeley and Adjunct Professor of Neurological […]
- Seneca’s Phaedra and the difference between fate and characterA few months ago I went to the wonderful Brooklyn Academic of Music to see a modern rendition (actually, multiple versions) of the story of Phaedra. It was, as is often the case with BAM’s “Next Wave” festival, a strange play, and not necessarily an improvement on the original, by the Greek dramatist Euripides. Interestingly, Seneca … Continue reading Seneca […]
- Seneca on Cato: the best quotesThe Stoics were big on both real life (Socrates) and fictional (Heracles) role models. That’s because virtue ethics is focused on the improvement of the individual character, something that can be achieved only by practice after other people’s examples. For the Stoics (unlike for Aristotle) virtue is both technē (i.e., craftsmanship) and epistēmē (i.e., know […]
- Where did that that name YHWH come from? By Karen L. Garst -- The Faithless Feminist ~ The Biblical Tetragrammaton, the Hebrew Name for God the Father. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Unless you are Jewish or took a course in religion during your lifetime, you may not even know what the letters YHWH stand for. No worries. It is the name of God written in Hebrew in the Torah or, as Christians call it, the […]
- A Skeptic's Reading List(or "Christmas gift ideas for the skeptic on your list"!) By Tania K ~ Up until a few years ago, I thought that I would always wear the "Christian" label. I never doubted that all the components of my religious faith would be a huge part of my life until, well, the Lord called me Home. When that faith began slipping away from me, my world […]
- Exxon Wins Latest Legal Round in Climate Fight With Mass. AGIn virtually unprecedented ruling, federal judge in Texas says Massachusetts AG Maura Healey must answer questions about her climate investigation to Exxon lawyers. By David Hasemyer A federal judge reaffirmed an order that Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey must submit to questioning by lawyers for ExxonMobil over her investigation of the oil indus […]
- Exxon Won’t Sponsor AGU, a Win of Sorts for Oil Giant’s OpponentsScientists had urged the science organization to reject funding because of Exxon’s climate denial history, but Exxon pulled out on its own. By Zahra Hirji Energy giant ExxonMobil won't be a sponsor of the largest earth and space science conference for the first time since at least 2001. It was Exxon's decision not to provide any funding for the ann […]
- URGENT: Emergency at Fukushima after major M7.4 quake — Workers evacuated as tsunami hits nuke plants — Public told “Please Flee Immediately” — “Cooling systems at reactor FAILED… Fears nuclear waste may leak” — Prime Minister: We must grasp extent of damage — Officials warn of more powerful quakes (VIDEOS). . . → Read More: URGENT: Emergency at Fukushima after major M7.4 quake — Workers evacuated as tsunami hits nuke plants — Public told “Please Flee Immediately” — “Cooling systems at reactor FAILED… Fears nuclear waste may leak” — Prime Minister: We must grasp extent of damage — Officials warn of more powerful quakes (VIDEOS)
- Alert: Typhoons cause failure of ‘ice wall’ around Fukushima reactors — Highly radioactive water flowing into ocean — Structure “critically affected” — Fears over multiple sections of barrier that have thawed — Expert: “The plan to block groundwater is failing” (VIDEO). . . → Read More: Alert: Typhoons cause failure of ‘ice wall’ around Fukushima reactors — Highly radioactive water flowing into ocean — Structure “critically affected” — Fears over multiple sections of barrier that have thawed — Expert: “The plan to block groundwater is failing” (VIDEO)
There is NO EVIDENCE that the Bible is from or inspired by a God, or that either of these two man-made biblical scriptures -- foundational to Christianism -- is true:
Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." John 3:16: "For God so loved the world that He gave is only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." NONE.
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Happiness is the only good. The time to be happy is now. The place to be happy is here. The way to be happy is to make others so. ~Robert Ingersoll
All religion is a foolish answer to a foolish question. ~Thomas Shelby
The strongly religious fear our capacity for moral reasoning that does not require a magical, invisible deity. They fear our ability to be ethical without the threat of hell or the reward of heaven. They fear that our allegiance is not to this or that country, or this or that prophet, or this or that guru, but to humanity as a whole. ~Phil Zuckerman
The idea that God could only forgive our sins by having his son tortured to death as a scapegoat is surely, from an objective point of view, a deeply unpleasant idea. If God wanted to forgive us our sins, why didn’t he just forgive them? Why did he have to have his son tortured? ~Richard Dawkins
Small is beautiful, when small is skilled and dedicated. ~Gene Logsdon
All religions are lies and scams, and all believers are victims. ~David Silverman
We [atheists] have no martyrs, we have no saints. ~Christopher Hitchens
Morality is doing right, no matter what you are told. Religion is doing what you are told, no matter what is right. ~H L Mencken
I've observed that people tend to live at one of two extremes in the spectrum of life: those who live on the edge, and those who avoid the edge. Those who live on the edge are hanging out in the most dangerous and unstable places — yet they're also often the most powerful agents of change, because the edge is where change is happening; away from the edge, things are naturally unchanging. ~Thom Hartmann
Religion. It's given people hope in a world torn apart by religion. ~Jon Stewart
My 12th year was my most Christian and most boring year in my life. ~Chuck Berry
Come on. You just can’t come up with anything more ridiculous than someone who honestly thinks that all human woes stem from an incident in which a talking snake accosted a naked woman in a primeval garden and talked her into eating a piece of fruit. ~Keith Parsons
When men stop believing in God, it isn't that they then believe in nothing: they believe in everything. ~Umberto Eco
Christians don’t need to be born again, they need to grow up. ~John Shelby Spong
Life is not a problem to be solved, nor a question to be answered. Life is a mystery to be experienced. ~Alan Watts
Society is like a stew: If you don't stir it up every now and then, the scum rises to the top.~Edward Abbey
You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. ~Buckminster Fuller
How thoughtful of God to arrange matters so that, wherever you happen to be born, the local religion always turns out to be the true one. ~ Richard Dawkins
I’m not saying there isn’t a god, but there isn’t a god who cares about people. And who wants a god who doesn’t give a shit? ~Robert Munsch
One of the great tragedies of mankind is that morality has been hijacked by religion. ~Arthur C. Clarke
Give a man a fish, and you'll feed him for a day; Give him a religion, and he'll starve to death while praying for a fish. ~ Anon
When you understand why you dismiss all the other gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours. ~ Stephen Roberts
Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it. The meaning of life is whatever you ascribe it to be. Being alive is the meaning. ~ Joseph Campbell
The only true definition of an atheist: a person who disbelieves or lacks belief in God or gods. ~Oxford English Dictionary
You have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.
Faith is just another word for gullibility.
I sang as one / Who on a tilting deck sings / To keep men's courage up, though the wave hangs / That shall cut off their sun. ~C. Day Lewis
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Books of the Freethinkers Bible
What is a fact beyond all doubt is that we share an ancestor with every other species of animal and plant on the planet. We know this because some genes are recognizably the same genes in all living creatures, including animals, plants and bacteria. And, above all, the genetic code itself — the dictionary by which all genes are translated — is the same across all living creatures that have ever been looked at. We are all cousins. Your family tree includes not just obvious cousins like chimpanzees and monkeys but also mice, buffaloes, iguanas, wallabies, snails, dandelions, golden eagles, mushrooms, whales, wombats and bacteria. All are our cousins. Every last one of them. Isn't that a far more wonderful thought than any myth? And the most wonderful thing of all is that we know for certain it is literally true...
The whole world is made of incredibly tiny things, much too small to be visible to the naked eye — and yet none of the myths or so-called holy books that some people, even now, think were given to us by an all-knowing god, mentions them at all! In fact, when you look at those myths and stories, you can see that they don't contain any of the knowledge that science has patiently worked out. They don't tell us how big or how old the universe is; they don't tell us how to treat cancer; they don't explain gravity or the internal combustion engine; they don't tell us about germs, or anesthetics. In fact, unsurprisingly, the stories in holy books don't contain any more information about the world than was known to the primitive peoples who first started telling them! If these 'holy books' really were written, or dictated, or inspired, by all-knowing gods, don't you think it's odd that those gods said nothing about any of these important and useful things? -Richard Dawkins
Prayer seems to me a cry of weakness, and an attempt to avoid, by trickery, the rules of the game as laid down. I do not choose to admit weakness. I accept the challenge of responsibility. Life, as it is, does not frighten me, since I have made my peace with the universe as I find it, and bow to its laws… It seems to me that organized creeds are collections of words around a wish. I feel no need for such.
I know that nothing is destructible; things merely change forms. When the consciousness we know as life ceases, I know that I shall still be part and parcel of the world. I was a part before the sun rolled into shape and burst forth in the glory of change. I was, when the earth was hurled out from its fiery rim. I shall return with the earth to Father Sun, and still exist in substance when the sun has lost its fire, and disintegrated into infinity to perhaps become a part of the whirling rubble of space. Why fear? The stuff of my being is matter, ever changing, ever moving, but never lost; so what need of denominations and creeds to deny myself the comfort of all my fellow men? -Zora Neale Hurston
Socialist Alternative is the organization that spearheaded the campaign to elect Kshama Sawant to Seattle City Council, the first independent socialist elected in a major U.S. city in decades. We are a national organization fighting in our workplaces, communities, and campuses against the exploitation and injustices people face every day. We are community activists fighting against budget cuts in public services; we are activists campaigning for a $15/hour minimum wage and fighting, democratic unions; we are people of all colors speaking out against racism and attacks on immigrants, students organizing against tuition hikes and war, women and men fighting sexism and homophobia.
We believe the Republicans and Democrats are both parties of big business, and we are campaigning to build an independent, alternative party of workers and young people to fight for the interests of the millions, not the millionaires.
We see the global capitalist system as the root cause of the economic crisis, poverty, discrimination, war, and environmental destruction. As capitalism moves deeper into crisis, a new generation of workers and youth must join together to take the top 500 corporations into public ownership under democratic control to end the ruling elites’ global competition for profits and power.
We believe the dictatorships that existed in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe were perversions of what socialism is really about.
We are for democratic socialism where ordinary people will have control over our daily lives.
An atheist believes that a hospital should be built instead of a church. An atheist believes that deed must be done instead of prayer said. An atheist strives for involvement in life and not escape into death. He wants disease conquered, poverty vanished, war eliminated. ~Madalyn Murray O'Hair, Founder
In the history of the world, the number of times a supernatural anything has been proven true is zero. Every god, ghost, spirit, devil, possession, and miracle ever claimed true is a lie. No exceptions. The number of times an atheistic (godless) argument has been proven wrong by a theistic argument is zero... In contrast, every time a theist-versus-atheist argument has been settled, an atheistic argument has won. This does not mean science is antireligion; it just means (or rather, strongly implies) religion is wrong... I challenge anyone to find any scientifically valid testable proof of anything supernatural, ever. If you can prove it, even once, I'll quit my job. I'm not nervous, as it has never been done in history, because it's ALL a lie. ~David Silverman, President
Local Organic Family Farms
THE SMALL ORGANIC FARM greatly discomforts the corporate/ industrial mind because the small organic farm is one of the most relentlessly subversive forces on the planet. Over centuries both the communist and the capitalist systems have tried to destroy small farms because small farmers are a threat to the consolidation of absolute power.
Thomas Jefferson said he didn’t think we could have democracy unless at least 20% of the population was self-supporting on small farms so they were independent enough to be able to tell an oppressive government to stuff it.
It is very difficult to control people who can create products without purchasing inputs from the system, who can market their products directly thus avoiding the involvement of mercenary middlemen, who can butcher animals and preserve foods without reliance on industrial conglomerates, and who can’t be bullied because they can feed their own faces. ~Eliot Coleman
Are The Heart
Of Free Communities
The only "hallowed halls"
I know of exist in
libraries and bookstores.
They saved my life. ~ ds
If you have a garden
and a library,
you have everything
you need. ~ Cicero