Archive for October 13th, 2009
This is a very funny satirical critique of the Theory of Gravity using many of the arguments that people will use to discount evolution. It was written by Ellery Schemp, the noted physicist who is also known as an activist for the separation of church and state.
On November 26, 1956, Ellery staged a protest against the school requirement that each student read 10 Bible passages and the Lord’s Prayer each day during homeroom. Instead, Ellery brought a copy of the Qur’an and read from that. For this, he was sent to the Principal’s office. With the help of his father, Edward Schempp, and the American Civil Liberties Union, they sued the Abington School district over their policy of mandatory Bible readings.
One of the things I found especially interesting about this article is that I discovered it on an Evangelical Apologetics website in the Philosophy section!
Warning: Gravity is “Only a Theory”
The Universal Theory of Gravity is often taught in schools as a “fact,” when in fact it is not even a good theory.
First of all, no one has measured gravity for every atom and every star. It is simply a religious belief that it is “universal.” Secondly, school textbooks routinely make false statements. For example, “the moon goes around the earth.” If the theory of gravity were true, it would show that the sun’s gravitational force on the moon is much stronger than the earth’s gravitational force on the moon, so the moon would go around the sun. Anybody can look up at night and see the obvious gaps in gravity theory.
Read the rest of this article here.
How paranoid have we become? Here’s what Allison Kilkenny of Alternet has to say:
The culture itself is sick, which is why America has a military budget that is almost as much as the rest of the world’s defense spending combined, and is over nine times larger than the military budget of China, and yet Americans feel more afraid, and more paranoid, than ever. Everyone is against us, we’re told. Everyone hates our freedom, and our amazing culture. China wants to overtake us. The entire Middle East wants us dead. Europeans laugh at us, and think we’re stupid. Emperor Penguins are plotting something. Canada is about to attack.
And then there’s Iran. Don’t even get us started on Iran. Until Americans decide to break this addiction to “The List,” this cycle of irrationality will continue into the foreseeable future.
And see this post, for the best friend of America’s politicians: peddling nightmares.
This just in, from Scientific American:
[T]he waste produced by coal plants is actually more radioactive than that generated by their nuclear counterparts. In fact, the fly ash emitted by a power plant—a by-product from burning coal for electricity—carries into the surrounding environment 100 times more radiation than a nuclear power plant producing the same amount of energy.
At issue is coal’s content of uranium and thorium, both radioactive elements. They occur in such trace amounts in natural, or “whole,” coal that they aren’t a problem. But when coal is burned into fly ash, uranium and thorium are concentrated at up to 10 times their original levels. Fly ash uranium sometimes leaches into the soil and water surrounding a coal plant, affecting cropland and, in turn, food . . . [E]stimated radiation doses ingested by people living near the coal plants were equal to or higher than doses for people living around the nuclear facilities.
Not that the risk of radiation from either coal plants or nuclear power plants appears to be significant for those living nearby.