Archive for October, 2011
Once again, a technician helps a deaf person hear the sound of her own voice (and others) for the first time:
Scientists looking for life (or at least earthlike life) have always obeyed a simple rule: follow the water. Biology is a wet process, after all — and generally the wetter the better.
According to this article from Time, scientists have discovered yet another potential source of water in the cosmos: in an infant solar system 175 light years from Earth. The solar system was scoped from the Herschel Space Observatory, which sits in space some 930,000 miles from our planet in the so-called Lagrange point, where the pull from Earth and the Sun balance out.
I would have liked to have the questions included, but here is an interesting set of responses from University of Cambridge philosopher Raymond Geuss, who expounds some of his positions about the expectations humans typically adopt about life versus the way the world actually is.
(The New York Times video didn’t allow embedding for some reason.)
As I noted earlier on this site, I recently finished a book titled, “Ratification: The People Debate the Constitution: 1787-1788″ by Pauline Maier, which is an invaluable resource for people interested in learning about the founding principles of the U.S. In the book, Maier takes us to each state ratifying convention, highlights the key speakers and most influential spokesmen at each and informs readers of the key issues on Americans’ minds in the late 1700s as our “experiment” in Democracy was taking shape.
Thanks to Ezra Klein for passing along this article about government spending. I think it provides a fascinating look at the private-public sector dichotomy and, contrary to what many politicians will claim, how government can actually fuel public sector spending meanwhile playing against private sector surpluses. The article makes the case that the way to turn the economy around is for the government to pump money into infrastructural improvements (roads, bridges, etc.), which will, in turn, help refill private sector coffers and overall buyer confidence.
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Wow. When you finally decide to get back to your own site after a 1 1/2 week layoff and can barely remember making the most recent post, you know something is rotten in Denmark.
I’ve been on vacation to New England and specifically, the North Shore above Boston. I actually got back in town late Saturday, rested Sunday, and work has been a whirlwind early this week. I’ll try to pick up the pace as I get back in the swing of things.
Coincidentally, I was actually passing by New York City along one of the perimeter routes when I first heard the announcement on the radio of the Occupy Wall Street demonstration that would take place later that day. I was tempted to take a detour, but I had a long day of driving ahead. Anyway, the following is a response from a Facebook user to a letter written by a recent college graduate who claims that she had worked her way through college, did it all without assuming any debt and that she would not blame Wall Street for any of her bad decisions (This implies that the OWS demonstrators were blaming Wall Street for their personal failings).
Religious folks talk a lot about spiritual inspiration. Well, how about inspiration, made possible by science, that brings a deaf woman to tears?
The following is absolutely unmatched by anything I have felt spiritually and more inspiring than any church service I have ever attended. No thanks to any god and much thanks to medicine and science, a deaf woman hears her own voice and that of her husband for the first time:
Brash? Yes, at times. Eloquent and provocative? Always.
And the LORD said unto Cain, Where [is] Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: [Am] I my brother’s keeper? And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground. And now [art] thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand; When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth. — Genesis 4:9-12
Before I continue, let me address a comment that was made to the last entry in this series.
attempts to play both sides of the fence. Most of what you have here is caricature, and not sound argument.
For instance, the whole bit about how “unethical” God is in the situation relies on one of two foundations – that the Creation story pictured in Genesis 2 is historical fact or allegory – neither of which is required or expected of the story once properly deconstructed.
I probably should have made the distinction before beginning this series, but I thought it would have been taken for granted. When making arguments, especially ones about religion, one sometimes has to speak as if something in question actually exists or that the opposing argument is sound. This is done in order to explore the consequences of those realities.
Here is one of the more peculiar surveys I’ve ever come across. This comes from State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. It counts the number of deer collisions nationwide. Apparently, West Virginia gets the prize for the most deer collisions. Here’s a screenshot:
And the article from the Wall Street Journal.