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The Platform

Is this a guard against falling or an invitation to jump?

Unrepresentative Military Chaplaincy: Is This a Problem?

Last night, the Secular Coalition for America sent us the following statistics as part of its call for an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act to provide for the hiring of nontheistic chaplains in the U.S. military:

Religious Preference of Servicemembers and Chaplains Religious Preference % of all Servicemembers % of all Chaplains None […]

The Replacement Magic Wand

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine expressed a need for a magic wand – not a wand that really performs magic, but a wand that looks like what people think a magic wand would look like. It was for her daughter, she said, a big fan of Harry Potter.

I had just so […]

Libertarians, How Do You Feel About the Rand Paul Plagiarism Scandal?

Since he appeared on the national scene in 2010, Senator Rand Paul has been a favorite of libertarians in the United States. Libertarians assert “the right to life — accordingly we support the prohibition of the initiation of physical force against others,” and also emphasize “the right to property… and the prohibition of robbery, trespass, […]

How Would Rural Folksiness Change The White House?

Scott Conroy of Real Clear Politics says that Montana’s Democratic Governor, Brian Schweitzer, who was mentioned as a possible presidential candidate in 2012, would bring “a hefty dose of rural folksiness” to the 2016 presidential campaign.

How would a hefty dose of rural folksiness change the 2016 presidential campaign? What if Schweitzer decided to just […]

Vice President Koch Me This

I learned something new today. Did you already know that David H. Koch was a vice presidential nominee? Do you know in what year, and for what party?

Worship Thor?

The third movie featuring Thor, the Norse god of thunder, is coming out in theaters on the 8th of November – Brits get to see it first. I wonder, how many films will Thor need to be in before we can be said to be worshiping him again?

Also, does the fact that the actor […]

Four Questions

What is the one subject in the world that matters most to you?

What is the one act you most despise?

What have you always promised yourself you’d learn more about when you only had a moment to spare?

If you could live your life over, what would you be that you aren’t?

I’ll answer, […]

NRA claim about Crime and Right-to-Carry States: Is it True? (Fact Check)

Yesterday, I noticed the recent Twitter posting of a disgraced former GOP chair:

“In right-to-carry states the violent crime rate is 24% lower than the rest of the US and the murder rate is 28% lower.”

A quick look at the latest available Uniform Crime Reports shows that this claim is not true. But I […]

Unity Through Tear Gas

I’m writing today from Istanbul, where I’ve been talking to a friend of mine who has been an active participant in the recent wave of demonstrations in Istanbul’s Taksim Square. “I never thought this could happen,” he told me. “The square was not one place filled with demonstrators of one mind. So many people […]

The Worm On The Roof

In the soil, under the branches, I found earthworms. […]