Truth Is a Woman Turns Six! (months old)

Last week Truth Is a Woman did what only 33% of blogs do — made it past the 6 month mark! Of course the real test is 1 year, so come readers and commenters and help Truth live! (at least for a year or so…)

Here’s a round-up of what we at TIW consider to be some of the more interesting posts or minor milestones had along the way…

First are two posts from our first month. “Because I Love Her” Is a Rational, Reasonable, and Logical Response is a look at the importance of emotion when making decisions. It is the first of many times the topic has come up around here, and it shows Truth’s commitment to climbing out of its logical shell… oh so like a woman! (please disregard the mildly chauvinistic overtones of that parenthetical comment).

A week later, the post Avampirism touched its bloggy toe into the definition of atheism and whether such a worldview should be considered faith.

The next milestone came in the form of a web-survey hosted by TIW. The survey probed how folks wear their religious labels and it was linked to by a number of bloggers. The results were linked to by several more. Although picking through the results can be bit tedious, they remain interesting: Our Labels versus Our Beliefs.

It was about this time our commenters became somewhat more active and we hosted The Best of Truth: The Very First “BoT” Award. The winner was Miriam — who has yet to be unseated because TIW editors have been too disorganized/disagreeable to pick the winner of the next round. Congratulations Miriam, you rule as a result of quarreling and dissension — just like so many South American dictators.

TIW was then featured in Evolution Blog’s Carnival of Evolution for this snazzy diagram illustrating the sluggish pace of evolution. That was nice for us since EB is a highly-frequented blog and Jason Rosenhouse is a pretty cool dude.

It was about this time that a Brain Skarpowsky and Roger Norling joined the editorial staff. Brain’s characteristic wit and charm is clearly seen in this probing assessment of a recent Supreme Court case: The Fuck You Elmo.

Roger, on the other hand, helps bring an international flavor to Truth. Around election time his post How Conservatives Are Liberals showed just how out of step American politics is with the rest of the world (or at least with the rest of the highly-enlightened and secular Scandinavian world).

And who could forget TIW’s election extravaganza! We not only live-blogged the entire day, It’s Election Day/Afternoon/Night, we also hosted a live chat from 5:00 til close. Of course the best stuff occurred in the chatroom leaving no trace behind in the post… but if you were there, it was memorable…

Since the election a few posts have managed to pique reader’s interest more than others, The “Vileness” of “Imagine No Religion”, inspired a healthy debate about the motivations of Atheist organizsations’ new get-out-the-message tactics.

And lastly, a pair of posts have have wound us down into some moderately philosophical depths. Knowing without Thinking revisits the importance of emotion and intuition when it comes to making decisions, and Do Unwritten Songs Exist? tries to tackle the age-old debate about the existence of anything that is not physical.

So that’s it! It’s been an interesting and fruitful 6-months here at TIW. We’ve posted 175 times and received over 1000 comments on them… so far. We’ve been averaging about 4000 hits per month, and that ain’t bad (for such a young blog).

Thanks for your eyeballs, your brains, and your clicks!

More on Non-Physcial Existence

This is the kind of reasoning we get when we assert that non-physical, non-material things exist. You may recall that over the past couple threads I have argued that concepts (like the number 2) are physical because they exist as ideas in our heads — and ideas in our heads have a physical component. They are structured by the interconnection of neurons in our brains — something I think we can all agree is physical. Outside of the “idea” of 2, I am not willing to say that 2 exists… but I am, as always, open to arguments!

In any case, here is a Young Earth Creationist using the notion that ideas (logical proofs in this case) are non-physical, non-natural “objects” and therefore necessitate, among other things, the existence of God, the truth of the Bible, and a 6000 year old earth.

If naturalism were true, it would be impossible to prove anything. Proofs involve use of the laws of logic, such as the law of non-contradiction, which says that you can’t have A, and not-A at the same time and in the same relationship. The laws of logic are not part of nature. They are not part of the physical universe. So, if nature ( the physical universe) is all that exists and if laws of logic are not part of nature, then they can’t exist. But they are required for rational reasoning. So, the naturalist view is actually self-refuting. So the naturalist view is actually self-refuting. If it were true, it would be impossible to reason. Yet naturalism is what secular scientists use as the foundation for their thinking. We will show why this explains many of the incorrect conclusions drawn by secular scientists, such as evolution and an old Earth.

The bold and underline is mine. You can read a full review of the book this quote came from here.

Creating Fear with Large Numbers

Yesterday, a friend of mine brought to my attention a set of figures concerning our government’s injection of money (it doesn’t have) into businesses (that have mismanaged themselves into needing it).

A post at boingboing puts it this wayContinue reading

The “Fuck You Elmo”

Are you prepared for this future?
Are you prepared for this future?

The Supreme Court is debating the f-word. You know–that one. No, not “flag”. No, not “founding fathers.” No, not “freedom” either. Yeah. That one. And since they couldn’t say it, I won’t say it either… not until the next parapraph.

The problem at hand is the use of swear words as “fleeting expletives” — that is, the utterance of words that are graphic or sexual but used in a way that is devoid of their meaning. An example of this type of language came from Bono’s 2003 Golden Globe acceptance speech in which he said it was “fucking brilliant.” The court wondered if that sort of usage might lead to a character from a children’s program (for literary sake let’s say Elmo) describing how he might “fuck the shit out of someone” (for example, Abby Cadabby.) Continue reading

How Stupid Are We?

And by we, I mean thee. Obviously Ty, Roger, Yeiser, and I have a lot on the ball. Just kidding folks. A good interview with Rick Shenkmen, who lifts the hood and takes a look at ideas like “the Americans are smart voters” and “I believe the children are our future” and throws a few wrenches in there.

For the record, Shenkman says:

I’m not calling the American people stupid.  That would be as stupid as when politicians say the American people are smart.  You simply cannot meaningfully generalize about 300 million people.

That said, he has tons of meaningful ways of pointing out our stupidity.

Also, a link to his opinion piece from the Washington Post where he provides a more straight ahead debunking of “5 Myths About Those Civic-Minded, Deeply Informed Voters” (read Americans).

As we’re nearing election time, and two of your editors have called the election for Obama, it may be time to get a whiff of these smelling salts. And don’t forget to post your electoral prediction here.

Dragons: a matter of true or false

Recent posts on this blog have addressed the scientific process in different degrees. A cornerstone in science is not only how to know what is true, but also how to identify false claims.

Brian Dunning, host and producer of the Skeptoid podcast, presents invaluable tools to assess the truthfullness of different claims in his video “Here Be Dragons: An Introduction to Critical Thinking”. A video well worth the watch.

The video mainly focuses on the new age and alternative medicine phenomena, but also touches on subjects already discussed here at Truth is a Woman.

Tyson here: I also think this is a very good video (you will have to be patient though, it’s 40 mins. long), but I would also like to mention a few things that the narrator does not discuss fully or might be somewhat dismissive of. Continue reading

Playing the sexist card…

Who knows how the McCain camp will characterize the following plea (after the jump) by Campbell Brown of CNN to take down the sexist forcefield around veep Nominee Sarah Palin. Perhaps by saying that it’s an example of the “the Sexist Card.” I hope somewhere, someone is holding the “Rational Card” which in most games is trump, but in this game it seems to have limited value. Then again, if Brown were indulged, I can’t see how much worse it could be than this interview with Katie Couric as she plays the “Hard Questions Card”. Although Palin instinctively reaches for the “ace up her sleeve” “Deer in the Headlights Card,” Couric’s ingenious one-two”Fact Card” / “Answer me Card” strategy clearly forces Palin into the classic “I’ll have to get back to you” fold…

In any case, here is what Campbell Brown thinks about it…

Continue reading

Juxtaposition and Perspective: Good for Comedy, Good for You

Jon Stewart skewers Republicans in the following clip from the Daily Show, but I have little doubt Democrats fall prey to the same sort of duplicitous-politicking.

In any case, we should keep in mind that being objective ain’t easy — and as passionate as you may believe in something, it could be passion fueling you belief, not the truth and beauty of the belief fueling your passion…