David Kirkpatrick

June 30, 2010

Sully’s “Quote For The Day II” post today

Filed under: et.al., Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 4:16 pm

At the Daily Dish Andrew Sullivan posts a quote for the day, and often many quotes for the day.

I sincerely hope this one is either a joke or satire from the linked source. If not, the United States might really be going down the tubes after all.

From the link:

“When my son Hunter asked me why it was okay for Bristol Palin to have a baby before she was married, I told him that God has special rules for special people.  God knew that Bristol could become very rich from having a baby, so He granted her a pregnancy.  Since she is the daughter of Sarah Palin, and the name Bristol Palin can be rearranged to spell “Orbit Plans” she is pretty much an angel, at least by the official bible definition.  And that pretty much makes her son like a Jesus, technically speaking.  This is just more proof that the blessed Palin family has wonderful and holy plans for true Americans.  After explaining this to my son, he told me that he wanted to be sex-educated at a public school so that he could have a Jesus baby too.  I smacked him in the mouth and told him that sex education is only for liberals and atheists. As good Christians, we should be ashamed of sexuality and our bodies, unless you are chosen by God, like Bristol Palin,” – tinfoiler.

March 18, 2010

The Catholic church is an international criminal organization

Filed under: et.al., Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:37 pm

It’s now been fully exposed as a criminal organization that systemically damages children everywhere it operates and uses its power, influence and secrecy to protect its leadership beyond any other ideal. Take children out of that equation and I’ve just provided a blanket description of every other international organized crime cabal. It’s high time for the international court system to dig into, and dig into hard, the Vatican, and criminally charge and punish the pedophiles — and their protectors in the church, including the Pope — to the fullest extent of the law.

This statement from Monsignor Maurice Dooley in Ireland could be “exhibit A” for the prosecution on why to pursue this matter criminally. Catholic omerta, the pedophilic priest’s best friend (emphasis mine in the blockquote):

Mgr Dooley was asked what action he would take if a paedophile priest approached him now to confide his crimes.

I would not tell anyone,” he said. “That is his responsibility. I am considering only my responsibility. My responsibility is to maintain the confidentiality of information which I had been given under the contract of confidentiality.

“There must be somebody else aware of what he is up to, and he could be stopped. It is not my function.

“I would tell (the priest) to stop abusing children,” he added.

“But I am not going to go to the police or social services in order to betray the trust he has put in me,” said Mgr Dooley who was speaking on BBC Radio Ulster.

(Hat tip: the Daily Dish)

December 11, 2008

More on nanotech and public perception

Man, this study is producing a lot of press releases. I’ve blogged here and here so far, and now here’s more food for thought.

The release:

New studies reveal differing perceptions of nature-altering science

Religion and culture shape views of nanotechnology

Two new National Science Foundation (NSF)-sponsored research studies say public acceptance of the relatively new, nature-altering science of nanotechnology isn’t a foregone conclusion. Instead, the studies indicate continued concern.

Researchers at Yale University say that when people learn about this novel technology they become sharply divided along cultural lines, while a separate study led by researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Arizona State University says nanotechnology seems to be failing the moral litmus test of religion.

Federal entities are looking into safety and public acceptance issues surrounding nanotechnology because of its ability to alter matter on an atomic and molecular scale. The potential societal benefits of using nanotechnology to create new materials and devices for medicine, electronics and energy production could be huge. But the idea of creating them through molecular manipulation leaves some people apprehensive.

“Evidence shows that there is much room for improvement in efforts to communicate about the environmental, health, and safety impacts of nanotechnology,” said Robert E. O’Connor, NSF program manager for decision, risk and management sciences.

The Yale study, part of their Cultural Cognition Project, surveyed 1,500 Americans, the majority of whom were unfamiliar with nanotechnology. Researchers gave participants balanced information about its risks and benefits. Upon seeing it, study participants became highly divided on the technology’s safety compared to a group that was not shown the same information.

According to Dan Kahan, the Elizabeth K. Dollard Professor at Yale Law School and lead author of the study, people’s cultural values determined how they responded. “People who had more individualistic, pro-commerce values, tended to infer that nanotechnology is safe,” said Kahan. People more worried about economic inequality saw the same information as implying that nanotechnology is likely to be dangerous.

The finding is consistent with other Cultural Cognition Project studies that show people’s cultural values influence their perceptions of environmental and technological risks. Kahan notes, “When respondents learned about this new technology, they matched their views of its risks with previously held cultural values.”

A separate study conducted in the United States and Europe indicates that people with religious views see nanotechnology as less morally acceptable, compared with people who live in more secular societies.

According to the study, the United States and a few European countries where religion plays a larger role, notably Italy, Austria and Ireland see the potential of nanotechnology to alter living organisms or inspire synthetic life as less morally acceptable. In more secular European societies such as France and Germany, people are less likely to see nanotechnology as morally suspect.

“What we captured is nano-specific,” said Dietram Scheufele, University of Wisconsin-Madison professor of life sciences communication. “But it is also representative of a larger attitude toward science and technology. It raises a big question about what’s really going on in our public discourse where science and religion often clash.”

“Our findings show that the public no longer just turns to scientists for answers about the science, but also for answers about its social implications,” he said. “In other words, they want to know not only what can be done, but also what should be done. The more prepared scientists are to answer both questions, the more credible their societal leadership will be on issues like nanotechnology,” said Scheufele, who co-authored the study with Elizabeth Corley, School of Public Affairs at Arizona State.

According to O’Connor, both studies highlight the need for specific public education strategies that consider citizens’ values and predispositions. “Understanding that people make decisions about technology through the prisms of their personal values will be important to take into account if we are to accurately communicate the risks and benefits of innovations like nanotechnology to the public,” said O’Connor.

“There is still plenty of time to develop risk-communication strategies that make it possible for persons of diverse values to understand the best evidence on nanotechnology’s risks,” said Kahan. “The only mistake would be to assume that such communication strategies aren’t necessary.”

It’s estimated that nanotechnology will be a $3.1 trillion global industry by 2015. Both studies can be found in the Dec. 7, 2008, issue of the journal Nature Nanotechnology.



Dreher, church and state

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 12:35 pm

(My bad — this post is by Erin Manning. Apologies to Rod, but sorry the header is stuck as is. New additions to the text are in italics.)

“Crunchy con” Rod Dreher  Erin Manning gets this absolutely wrong:

There aren’t any serious voices on the right (or anywhere else in America) clamoring for religion to be tied to government.

Yep, I took one sentence out of context, but hit the link for the long, long bit that attempts (and fails to) explain away that one sentence. This attitude from Erin is typical of Rod’s weak approach to what can be best described as liberal conservatism — he wants very liberal fiscal policies tied to very conservative (dare I say theocratic) cultural policies, and pretend like it’s just in the best intentions for all.

“See, gee whiz I just want the best for everyone!” And then candy falls from the sky. If that candy kills you then you’re in luck. God will pluck your dead corpse up to heaven for life eternal.

I’m not going to take the time for a search, but it’s not too hard to find many, many recent quotes from uber-religious politicians (who would probably be happy to be called theocrats) on exactly why they want the church to be a major part of the state. And that doesn’t take into account religious leaders opining on politics or religiously-bent right wing pundits. Dreher did say there weren’t “any serious voices on the right” clamoring for theocracy.

Well Rod Erin, you are very wrong. There are voices, serious or not, who want religion to be tied to government right here in the United States. Sounds a lot like some of those Mideast lands doesn’t it, Rod Erin?

December 7, 2008

The religious fear nanotech

Filed under: Politics, Science, Technology — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:45 pm

One more place religion holds modern society down — it seems the religious fear nanotechnology. Idiots.

This is also one more great reason to fight hard against the burgeoning theocratic movement in the GOP.

From the link:

When it comes to the world of the very, very small — nanotechnology — Americans have a big problem: Nano and its capacity to alter the fundamentals of nature, it seems, are failing the moral litmus test of religion.

In a report published today (Dec. 7) in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, survey results from the United States and Europe reveal a sharp contrast in the perception that nanotechnology is morally acceptable. Those views, according to the report, correlate directly with aggregate levels of religious views in each country surveyed

In the United States and a few European countries where religion plays a larger role in everyday life, notably Italy, Austria and Ireland, nanotechnology and its potential to alter living organisms or even inspire synthetic life is perceived as less morally acceptable. In more secular European societies, such as those in France and Germany, individuals are much less likely to view nanotechnology through the prism of religion and find it ethically suspect.

“The level of ‘religiosity’ in a particular country is one of the strongest predictors of whether or not people see nanotechnology as morally acceptable,” says Dietram Scheufele, a University of Wisconsin-Madison professor of life sciences communication and the lead author of the new study. “Religion was the strongest influence over everything.”

For more on this subject, see this post.

Head below the fold for the complete press release this post was based on.