# Court Rules for Teacher Who Criticized Creationism

The Christian Science Monitor has a story about a teacher in California who criticized creationism in class in 2007: A three-judge panel of the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled unanimously that the lawsuit against an advanced placement history teacher at Capistrano Valley High School in Mission Viejo must be thrown out of court… Continue reading Court Rules for Teacher Who Criticized Creationism

# Fact-Checking the BillDo

Bill Donohue is in fine form this morning. As I read his apoplectic hissy fit over the fact that New York City will now mandate sex education, I can practically see the flecks of spittle flying out from the monitor and feel the floor shake as he stamps his feet: We’ve had de facto sex-education… Continue reading Fact-Checking the BillDo

# Craziness Loves Company

Recently Kent Hovind’s International House of Lunacy offered to send out free DVDs to anyone who asked. So naturally, I had to take them up. Yesterday, it was delivered to my… let’s say “imaginary roommate”, with the oh-so-subtle name “Sevil Natas” (thanks to Fez for suggesting that). I haven’t watched the DVD yet. But it… Continue reading Craziness Loves Company

# Numbers Mean Things

So I saw this headline in The Washington Post: UN envoy says \$5 billion malaria fight has saved several thousand lives in recent years My first thought was, “\$5 billion divided by, let’s say 5000 people, that comes out to a million bucks per person saved. A noble result, to be sure, but isn’t there… Continue reading Numbers Mean Things

Math

# Answer to the Saturday Puzzle

On Saturday, I gave the following puzzle: Can you make the following equation correct by moving just one number?: 45 – 46 = 1 Answer below the jump.

Math

# Saturday Puzzle

I love Richard Wiseman’s Friday Puzzles. So as a tribute of sorts to this one, here’s one of my own: Can you make the following equation correct by moving just one number?: 45 – 46 = 1 I’ll post the answer on Monday.

Skepticism

# Three Different Things that Look Similar

Here are three statements: St. Anselm says that no one really disbelieves in God. Stephen Hawking says that spacetime is smooth at the Big Bang. PZ Myers says that “The only appropriate responses should involve some form of righteous fury, much butt-kicking, and the public firing and humiliation of some teachers” All three are of… Continue reading Three Different Things that Look Similar

# Fact-Checking the BillDo

Recently, BillDo farted the following onto the intertubes: Moreover, Jenkins wrote that “Out of 100,000 priests active in the U.S. in this half-century, a cadre of just 149 individuals—one priest out of every 750—accounted for over a quarter of all allegations of clergy abuse.” In other words, almost all priests have never had anything to… Continue reading Fact-Checking the BillDo

# Cheap Signaling

I talked about appropriating the biological concept of costly signaling for general skepticism, and it occurred to me to wonder whether there’s such a thing as cheap signaling. Costly signaling is when the investment required to transmit a message, like “trust me” or “have sex with me” is so high that only the worthy applicant… Continue reading Cheap Signaling

Skepticism

# Costly Signaling for Lay Skeptics

This was originally posted at Secular Perspectives. Let’s say you’re an average person, of average intelligence, average education, with an average job, and you’ve run across several news articles. One says that an asteroid has just been detected that will hit the earth in 2015. Another says that taking vitamin B3 daily can improve your… Continue reading Costly Signaling for Lay Skeptics