Category Archives: Religion

Dancing about architecture

There is a small, ugly overlap between the kind of people who complain about reduced state funding for the arts and education in the UK and the kind of people who excuse the burning of books, advocate the closure of places of learning, attack performances of classical music, and disrupt debates in bookshops. Outside this […]

Emeritus Professor Of Political Thought explains Muslim Rage

There’s a letter in today’s Economist about the murder of the US Ambassador to Libya by fundamentalist extremists that encapsulates the rich blend of bigotry, ignorance, non sequitur, crude generalization, snobbery, and sheer, gobsmacking stupidity in which the thought processes of fashionable over-educated opinion stew. It also gives me an opportunity to try out my new […]

Lessons For Us All

I recommend you read all of this Martin In The Margins post: Taliban tactics in Tower Hamlets: I’m not sure why I’ve been so affected by the story of Gary Smith, the east London RE teacher who was assaulted by four Islamic extremists because they disapproved of him teaching religion to Muslim girls. Perhaps it […]

Making Money By Telling Women The Correct Way To Have Sex

Further to my post about rescuing fallen women, the Heresiarch examines how evidence-abusing ideologues compete to cash in on prostitution.

Animals Or Savages?

Some commentators who have opinionated about the recent murders in Afghanistan, murders supposedly committed “in response to” a US pastor’s burning a copy of the Koran, have resorted to what I ironically call “good racism”. Bad racism is what unemployed people living on council housing estates display when they blame their being unemployed on immigrants. […]

Bush Was Right

This would be a good day to quote and laugh at some of the many racist articles written over the past few years that warned us not to “inflame the Arab Street”, that rhetorical mass of undifferentiated savages that “we” created by interfering in the Noble Civilizations of the region with our Imperialist Adventures, and […]

A Face-Saving Exercise

The BBC reports: A former soldier who was jailed for refusing to fight in Afghanistan has handed back a medal in protest at Britain’s involvement in the war. “There’s a real up-swell of awareness now among military families and among the military, and among the people in this country, that this conflict is, has kind […]

Who’s Mad?

Martin In The Margins makes an important criticism of an otherwise mostly admirable and well-intentioned enterprise: As for that plea for a focus on ‘tolerance’, it would have helped if the rally organisers hadn’t included a performer who has expressed the most outrageously intolerant opinions. Appearing onstage in the National Mall was Yusuf Islam, the […]

“…the most inalienable and sacred of all human rights”

I am against bans on the wearing of the burqa or niqab in public1 therefore I am going to recommend that you read the best article I have read in favour of such bans: The argument that the garment is not a religious obligation under Islam is well-founded but irrelevant; millions of Muslims the world […]

Lost Appeal

The BBC reports: A relationship counsellor who refused to offer sex therapy to gay couples has lost his unfair dismissal appeal. Gary MacFarlane, 47, from Bristol, was sacked by marriage guidance service Relate after he said he could not do anything to promote gay sex. He alleged Relate had refused to accommodate his Christian beliefs. […]

Oops, Odone Again

Most literate adults in the UK know that The Daily Telegraph wants the Conservative Party to win the upcoming General Election. Those who have been following the recent public unravelling of that newspaper’s opinionist Christina Odone—she is to the Telegraph what Madeleine Bunting is The Guardian—know that she particularly wants the LibDems to do badly […]

“Aimless Hostility”

A few days ago, John Gray reviewed A C Grayling’s latest book Ideas that Matter: The Concepts that Shape the 21st Century. To my surprise, someone I know linked to the review approvingly. I was surprised because the review is tosh: hysterical, pompous, and so self-fiskingly stupid that it’s not even necessary to read the […]

Atheist Taliban Exposed By Daily Mail

The headline above is a lie, as is almost everything in an article in The Daily Mail, fisked here by the British Humanist Association. [via wongaBlog]

Jew Do You Think You Are?

Whenever someone implies that anti-Semitism isn’t racism, I point out that it’s one of the few examples of discrimination that really is racism (unlike, for example, the invented thoughtcrime “Islamophobia”1 ) because the Ashkenazi Jewish population is as close as you can get scientifically to the common (and deeply flawed) notion of what a “race” […]

Offensive Language

Harry Windsor is a “thug” for referring to another soldier by the nickname “Paki”, according to Mohammed Shafiq of the Ramadhan Foundation, quoted by the BBC. The BBC page links to the Website of that organisation, where Shafiq also claims that the government of Israel is like that of the Nazis. The organization’s Chairman and […]

How Can You Tell?

MySpace sex offender charged with running “fake” church. It’s lucky they caught him before “real” churches became associated with fraud and the sexual abuse of children.

Ooh, That’s A New One

Last year, Newsbiscuit ran a spoof “NEWSPAPERS RUN OUT OF ‘LORD LEVY IS JEWISH’ EUPHEMISMS” story [requires free registration] I was reminded of it when I read this from the latest statement by “the neo-Nazi North German Action Office”, as reported in the Wall Street Journal: Inasmuch as it is a determined opponent of the […]

Paddy’s Wager

PADDY POWER OFFERS ODDS OF 4-1 THAT GOD EXISTS A bookmaker has slashed its odds on proof being found of God’s existence to just 4-1. Since opening its book just two months ago, punters hoping to have their faith rewarded have placed £5,000 with Paddy Power. It began taking bets on the question that has […]

The Ultimate “Comment Is Free” Comment?

I don’t read or link to “Comment Is Free”, The Guardian‘s cesspit of a group blog. Sadie saves you, me, and everybody from ever having to do so again by republishing a comment from the site that captures the spirit of the place. Under an article about rape, a reader writes: “rape is never a […]

A Client I Won’t Miss

[BY TELEPHONE] CLIENT-I-WON’T-MISS: [giggling] …and I saw the pictures of that gay wedding on your Website. POOTERGEEK: I shoot Gays, Catholics, Protestants, Humanists, Blacks, Whites, Jews… CLIENT-I-WON’T-MISS: Well, I suppose you have to be prepared to work for anyone when you’re starting out.

Temper Temper / Pro Tempore

I keep meaning to write something about the response of the liberal Left media to the selection of Sarah Palin as the Republican candidate for Vice President of the United States—there are parallels with the way parts of the Right responded to Bill Clinton’s sexual incontinence—but, as I bring my fingers to the keys, I […]

Good Advice

These are both old (by blogging standards) and from the unlikeliest of sources, but I think they’re excellent: Marketer Seth Godin on how to send email and 79-year-old Catholic priest Pat Connor on how to choose a spouse.

Raffish

Look at Anne Hathaway’s ex-boyfriend Raffaelo Follieri’s hairdo and blue-jeans-and-blazer combo and tell me you’re surprised he is being questioned about an alleged large-scale credit card fraud. I bet she’s wishing she’d returned my calls now.

Growing Up

[UPDATE: Edited to use the version of the body text that actually makes some sense with the originally posted title.] I’m not that old, so I’m often puzzled by people who make historical pronouncements in ignorance of recent, relevant history, sometimes history that happened within their lifetimes but not mine. Of course, as Catholic dogma […]

Busy Tone

I’m so tired with work I’m starting to have hallucinations. I’d swear Richard Dawkins starts rapping 1 minute and 6 seconds into this YouTube video. (Christopher Hitchens throws shapes from 1:49 or thereabouts.) Go here for the torrent. [via]

Generation Gap

You probably didn’t know that the miniature-mace-shaped implement used by a priest in the Roman Catholic church to sprinkle holy water is called an “aspergill” or “aspergillum”. Despite our respective Catholic upbringings and useless fact collecting, neither did I or my dad. But my dad (Jesuit schooling, degree in classics) could quote me the relevant […]

Can We Talk About Something Else Now?

Islam isn’t a race. Martin Amis isn’t a racist. This video is fun: [via The Ambrosini Critique]

Bin Laden Still Trapped In Underground Bunker Behind Wall Of Rubble With Only Webcam, Grecian 2000, And “Comment Is Free” For Company

“Gradually restores natural looking color to gray hair” It’s rambling, lying, conspiracist bollocks from a mass-murderer in a silly hat. He recommends Chomsky, the Kyoto Protocol, a universal flat tax, and an end to democracy. Someone give him a newspaper column. Whoops. Already been done. I’m not quoting the costumed cock here. You can search […]

Entertainment Elsewhere

While I’m away, you might want to read Let’s Be Sensible‘s “science” round-up and a couple of posts at Mr E’s place. This one is about a news story that highlights the absurdities of religious schools in England and Wales and this one is about the latest Conservative Party screw-up. When they do get rid of Cameron as […]

The Irreligious Policemen

Not having a telly, I didn’t catch the latest from Richard Dawkins, but when I visited his Website to look for clips, I saw this photo of him: All I could think of was Michael Mann directing Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens in an atheist actioner: [A convertible Ferrari screams through downtown in slow motion, reflections […]