Elizabeth Warren Nails It

Apparently this is a week or so old, but I missed it when it first came down the tubes.

Elizabeth Warren, candidate for one of Massachusetts’ U.S. Senate seats, the one currently held by Scott Brown, recently said something fantastic:

I hear all this, oh this is class warfare — No! There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody. You built a factory out there — good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that maurauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory… Now look. You built a factory and it turned into something terrific or a great idea — God Bless! Keep a Big Hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along. Continue reading “Elizabeth Warren Nails It”

The Enemy

Do you know the really great thing about being a sociopath?

The really great thing is that you can knock down a 6-year-old and take his ice cream.

And then you have ice cream! Man, what could be better than that? Free ice cream! Wow!

Oh, uh … you think there’s something wrong with that? Ah, I see your problem: You’re normal. You have the disadvantage that you think it’s wrong to take some kid’s ice cream and leave him crying, just because you can. You probably get all bent when you see injustice. Cheating, lies, theft and cruelty actually bother you.

What a pussy — sociopaths love living among suckers like you. Continue reading “The Enemy”

Taxed to Support Churches

A new article in PoliticusUSA:

Hidden Tax: US Families Pay an Extra $1,000 per Year to Support Religion

The economic impact on taxpayers is substantial when considering that when churches avoid paying tax, the cost of maintaining roads, police and fire protection, and schools must be made up by everyone else. When the community picks up the tab for a church’s drain on the community, it is a subsidy and in violation of the separation of church and state. It has been estimated that when church and clergy tax-exemptions are taken into account, the average family may pay up to $1,000 in extra taxes every year to make up for the lost revenue because of the church’s tax exemption and it includes sales taxes, inheritance taxes, income taxes, and personal taxes.

Clint Eastwood: Gays? Marry?

Clint Eastwood wins major Decent Guy points, despite (these days, anyway) being a registered Republican.

I googled “Clint Eastwood Quotes” and most of the lists contain movie lines like “Go ahead. Make my day.” and “…You’ve got to ask yourself one question — Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?”

… which are not really Clint Eastwood quotes, but script-writer quotes, or movie-character quotes.

The REAL stuff is so much better:

“These people who are making a big deal out of gay marriage? I don’t give a fuck about who wants to get married to anybody else! Why not?! We’re making a big deal out of things we shouldn’t be making a deal out of.”

“They go on and on with all this bullshit about ‘sanctity’ — don’t give me that sanctity crap! Just give everybody the chance to have the life they want.”

God-Goggles. Kinda Like Beer-Goggles, Only Whinier. (video)

New York Mayor Bloomberg successfully resisted pressure from religious groups, and held a secular remembrance for the families of 9/11 victims.

Predictably, the godder reaction was outrage. Failing to invite them is the same as attacking them. According to Richard Land, who leads the public policy arm of the Southern Baptist Convention:

Nobody was turning religious leaders away from the scene 10 years ago. Why are they being banned from the 10th anniversary? The only answer, pure and simple, is anti-religious prejudice. Continue reading “God-Goggles. Kinda Like Beer-Goggles, Only Whinier. (video)”

Remembering 9/11

Have you ever been stabbed in the back? By which I mean, really betrayed by someone you trusted?

You feel hurt at first, but afterward angry. The level of trust betrayed probably defines the level of anger.

You get into a business deal with friends, and you later discover they’ve not only fucked you over royally, they intended to fuck you over from the beginning. Or you’re married and you find out your husband is boinking another woman. Worse, he picked up a disease from her, and has now given it to you. Unbelievably worse, that other woman was your own sister.

Yeah, like that. In either case, you’d be SERIOUSLY pissed. Continue reading “Remembering 9/11”

Should We Ban All Religion?

A couple of Australian ad pitchmen created sample ads advocating the banning of all religion.

A television program on Australia’s ABC1 network, called The Gruen Transfer, discusses the methods, science and psychology behind advertising. Their website has a FAQ pagewhich gives the following definition: “Named for Victor Gruen, who designed the very first shopping mall. The term describes that split second when the mall’s intentionally confusing layout makes our eyes glaze and our jaws slacken… the moment when we forget what we came for and become impulse buyers.”

In four seasons of Gruen, they’ve suggested bringing back child labour, invading new Zealand, euthanasing everyone over 80 and many more ridiculous ideas. This week, they finally found a subject so untouchable that they had agencies actually decline to take part. Adelaide’s Jim Stapleton came up with the controversial Pitch suggestion: a campaign to ban religion.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nhAKzYr4-wg&w=450&h=283]

Score One for Atheist Meetup

Capital Region Atheists & Agnostics scored a win for freethinkers with a story in today’s Times Union, the Albany, New York, daily newspaper.

Rick Martin, one of the founding members of the group — formed in 2007 and now possessing 300 or so members (including me, who manages to get to almost none of the meetings) — was interviewed by the TU’s religion reporter.

The interview questions were neutral, neither supporting nor attacking, and Martin was able to say his piece in a non-adversarial atmosphere. For instance: Continue reading “Score One for Atheist Meetup”