Monday, March 12, 2012

Good Reads/Random Cool Sites (3/12/2012)

The stupidity of the "they want someone else to pay for their contraception" argument.

Apparently, "material support for a terrorist group" is not a crime if you're powerful enough (and not a Muslim), e.g., "Rudy Giuliani, Howard Dean, Michael Mukasey, Ed Rendell, Andy Card, Lee Hamilton, Tom Ridge, Bill Richardson, Wesley Clark, Michael Hayden, John Bolton, Louis Freeh — and Fran Townsend."

In 2009, the people of Iceland forced the government to put people ahead of banks after the economy collapsed. The economy is already in recovery (and outperforming the Eurozone).

In Greece, on the other hand, they're doing what the banks tell them.

Why do only 20 percent of Americans realize that middle-class taxes have decreased under Obama?

I am the Lorax, and I speak for the trees Mazda.

Undertaker's story offers Japan hope.

Snowy owl vs. peregrine falcon.

The physics of Soul Calibur boobs.

Dwarf Jeebus knocks (via Reddit).

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The Adventures of Leonard McCoy, Space Doctor (#50)


Click for a brave new size.

Back with a new look. What do you think?

Click on the "Space Doctor" tag for more adventures!

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Friday, March 09, 2012

Good Reads/Random Cool Sites (3/9/2012)

Caught on tape! Did you know that Obama used to pal around with black people?!

And the race-baiting continues.

I use to wonder what why companies spent money on the environment. Then, in Japan, I worked on a project that tied a sales of a product to contributions to environmental causes. The contributions were paid out of the company's advertising budget. "Ah," I thought. "Now I know."

"Frankly, the professional experience I have had with TSA has frightened me," says former FBI agent.

How William Shatner stopped being ashamed of Star Trek. (BTW, Firefox's spell checker doesn't have "Shatner" in it. I ask you, what kind of dictionary doesn't include "Shatner"?)

Exotic dancers from the 1890s (no nudes). An interesting commentary on changing aesthetics.

Old books carved into art.

This guy used to be on the BBC.

"[The Olive Garden] is the largest and most beautiful restaurant now operating in Grand Forks." And a follow-up.

It's Subnormality's fifth anniversary. Yes I love xkcd, and I like Questionable Content very much, but I think on the whole, on a good day (which is most of them), Subnormality is my favorite web comic.

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Saturday, March 03, 2012

The Trinity Explained

Over on Facebook, Andrew asked, "OK, so would someone like to explain the Trinity to me in super easy-to-understand terms?" I was going to answer there, but I thought it would be a little long for a Facebook comment, so I decided to do it here instead.

The Trinity Explained

Scene: An ancient council of Theologians

Theologian 1: OK, the Old Testament says there is only one God, but the New Testament says God the Father is God, Jesus is God, and the Holy Spirit is God, i.e., there are three Gods. We have to figure out a way to resolve this contradiction, or we’re screwed.

Theologian 2: Well... why don’t we just admit that we're polytheists?

The rest of the Theologians: HERETIC! BURN HIM!

Theologian 2: No! I was just kidding! There's only one God!

The rest of the Theologians: BURN HIM!

Theologian 1: Wait! Let's give him a chance. [To Theologian 2] All right, explain how the three Gods are only one God, or we'll burn you. [To the rest of the Theologians] This oughtta be good.

Theologian 2: Um... so... there are three Gods --

The rest of the Theologians: BURN HIM!

Theologian 2: But they're only one God!

Theologian 1: Go on...

Theologian 2: So there is one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity...

Theologian 1: And?

Theologian 2: For there is one person of the Father, another of the Son, and another of the Holy Spirit.

The rest of the Theologians: BURN HIM!

Theologian 2: But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit is all one, the glory equal, the majesty coeternal! And yet they are not three eternals but one eternal!

The rest of the Theologians: WTF?

Theologian 1: All right, that's pretty good so far.

Theologian 2: And we neither confound the persons nor divide the substance...

Theologian 1: [Laughing] All right, don't get carried away.

Theologian 2: The Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God, and yet they are not three Gods, but one God.

Theologian 1: OK, you can stop, you're just repeating yourself now. [To the rest of the Theologians] I think that was pretty good. Let's not burn him, all right?

The rest of the Theologians: [Disappointed murmuring; a few plaintive cries of "Burn him?"]

Theologian 1: You realize that what you said made no sense at all, right?

Theologian 2: Um...

Theologian 1: I mean it's complete nonsense, isn't it? You're just saying "One plus one plus one equals one." And the Bible doesn't support it either. Like when Jesus was baptized, He prayed to Himself, then He heard His voice from the sky saying, "I am My beloved son, in whom I am well pleased," and then He appeared to Himself in the form of a Dove? Or when he told his disciples they should be one as He and His Father are one, he meant that they should form like a 12-man version? Really? It's complete bullshit.

Theologian 2: Um... it's a Mystery?

Theologian 1: What?

Theologian 2: Well, I was thinking that, like, anything we can’t explain, we’ll just call a "Mystery."

Theologian 1: A "Mystery." I like it.

Theologian 2: We can say things like "It's too far above human thought," and "Only God can understand it."

Theologian 1: Sweet. We can call it a "divine paradox."

The rest of the Theologians: HA-HA-HA!

Theologian 1: Yeah. But will people actually believe such obvious bullshit?

Theologian 2: If they don't, we can burn them.

The rest of the Theologians: BURN THEM!

Theologian 1: All right, I move that the Council adopt this Trinity bullshit as our official explanation for why three Gods are really one God, and that we burn anyone who disagrees.

The rest of the Theologians: BURN THEM! BURN THEM!

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