Monthly Archives: August 2006

Samuel L. Jackson Interview

AVC: You’re doing the voice of God for an audiobook version of the Bible. How does the voice of God differ from the voice of Samuel L. Jackson?

SLJ: Not very much.

AVC: How do you get into character for that?

SLJ: I don’t. I just kind of read it and hope it sounds omnipotent.

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USA, #2 in Ignorance

Here’s a chart from that survey of different countries’ acceptance of evolution:

evolutionfigure USA, #2 in Ignorance

via Link Bunnies

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Bad Math in the Bible

Then Huram cast a large round tank, 15 feet across from rim to rim; it was called the Sea. It was 7 1/2 feet deep and about 45 feet in circumference.
–First Kings 7:23

Very easy. You are talking about the value of Pi. That is actually 3 not 3.14……. The digits after the decimal forms a geometric series and it will converge to the value zero. So, 3.14…..=3.00=3. Nobody still calculated the precise value of Pi. In future they will and apply advenced Mathematics to prove the value of Pi=3.
–Some guy who takes the Bible literally

Turns out there’s some bad math in the Bible.
via Digg

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A Lot of Americans Don’t Understand Genetics

A comparison of peoples’ views in 34 countries finds that the United States ranks near the bottom when it comes to public acceptance of evolution. Only Turkey ranked lower.

Among the factors contributing to America’s low score are poor understanding of biology, especially genetics, the politicization of science and the literal interpretation of the Bible by a small but vocal group of American Christians, the researchers say.

also via Kottke

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Schneier on Counter-Terrorism Measures

The new airplane security measures focus on that plot, because authorities believe they have not captured everyone involved. It’s reasonable to assume that a few lone plotters, knowing their compatriots are in jail and fearing their own arrest, would try to finish the job on their own. The authorities are not being public with the details — much of the “explosive liquid” story doesn’t hang together — but the excessive security measures seem prudent.

But only temporarily.

Bruce Schneier has a very good post that makes Cory’s point without going overboard.

via Kottke

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I Take a Step Away from Cory Doctorow’s Side of the Room

Earlier in the week (before the Heathrow thing), I quoted Cory Doctorow making a point about reacting to terror with fear. Here’s the quote:

The bottom line is, terrorism doesn’t kill many people. Even in Israel, you’re four times more likely to die in a car wreck than as a result of a terrorist attack. In the USA, you need to be more worried about lightning strikes than terrorism. The point of terrorism is to create terror, and by cynically convincing us that our very countries are at risk from terrorism, our politicians have delivered utter victory to the terrorists: we are terrified.

I like this sentiment, and I think an element in America has happily handed over a victory to terrorists. On the other hand, I don’t think this logic necessarily applies to the current reaction to the Heathrow plot. Doctorow clearly does, and I’m not sure he’s really thinking this through.

Here’s a question: Does Tony Blair get to bring his laptop on his government plane? Can Laura Bush keep her lipstick with her on Air Force One? Does Dick Cheney take off his shoes and get them x-rayed before he flies? How about Condi Rice’s knee-high lace-up boots? Is her mission to Israel delayed while she tries to re-lace them while balancing her laptop bag on one shoulder and trying to get her watch back on?

Um… get your own private plane (or get a job that provides one) and you can enjoy the same privileged status, Cory.

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Stephen Baldwin Is Into Stryper

 Stephen Baldwin Is Into Stryper

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Stephen Baldwin Is Insane

“I like to ask friends of mine, happy couples who seem to have a pretty good marriage, I will ask them, ‘How’s your sex life?’” Alec Baldwin’s little brother writes in a new book excerpted in the upcoming Esquire mag. “They will say something like pretty good or okay or no complaints here. Here’s what I tell them: Imagine taking a healthy sex life and inviting the power of God into that exchange.”

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Galloway Gets Respect

Allegedly, one of the Heathrow suspects had ‘a lot of respect’ for jerkwad George Galloway and in fact met him. Galloway denies knowing the suspect, which is fair. Galloway isn’t responsible for everyone he meets or who admires him. On the other hand, it does say something about what ideals Galloway has come to represent — and not in a lone voice.
via Andrew Sullivan

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Lieberman Strikes Me as Sort of a Turd

Here’s a point I’ve been dying for someone to make:

But Lamont is only one man, and his primary victory over one uniquely annoying incumbent hawk scarcely means the end of moderation in the Democratic Party.

Michael Tomasky argues in Slate for why Lamont vs. Lieberman is a unique case.

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