Liberté, égalité, fraternité Saturday, Nov 14 2015 


Liberty.  Equality. Brotherhood.

The French national motto.

In the wake of Friday perhaps we should make a concerted effort to make it mankinds.

You’ll notice those three words contain no mention of any higher power.  Nothing not achievable by man.

What you want to believe in private is up to you.  But don’t expect others to believe it.  And certainly don’t bring it into the public arena.  Stop justifying your actions because of some mysterious invisible force.

Not just hurting people, but rejecting truths because they don’t fit in with your Big Book of Stories.  that isn’t just killing people because they said something rude about people who may, or may not, have lived hundreds of years ago.

It’s about punishing those who have broken the rules laid down by a supernatural being.

It’s about ignoring science that doesn’t fit in with those Stories.

It’s about insisting your beliefs have some sort of special place in society, that some rules don’t have to apply to you.

I don’t care if you believe in Gods, Goddesses, Tree Spirits or mice in a teapot orbiting on the other side of the sun.

If you can’t do the right thing without being told to by something supernatural, you may want to take a good long hard look at yourself.

Liberté, égalité, fraternité

We don’t need anything else.

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Atheist Morality Monday, Feb 9 2015 


I am moral because I choose to be. I choose to treat others well, and I try to. Not because I am scared, but because I believe it is the right thing to do. When I am not moral, I choose not to harm other because in the heat of the moment I lose my reason, but fear lawful retribution. When I am calmer I realise my thoughts were wrong, and consider ways to keep emotional control. I am moral so as not to hurt others.

When they are moral it is because they are scared of retribution. There does not have to be a reason to be moral, apart from they are following rules. Not because they believe those rules are in themselves moral, but because they have been told these are the rules they must follow. They do not question those rules, because to do so would deny that their god is greater. To question this would be against those rules – the moral do not question god, the immoral are punished. Thus they are moral so they do not get hurt.

Who is the more moral? He who acts not to hurt others, or he who acts to avoid being hurt?

Devrions-nous être Charlie? Tuesday, Jan 20 2015 


George Galloway has described Charlie Hebdo as “a racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag.  Typical of Gorgeous George he ignores everything that he can’t get angry about, that doesn’t prove or argue with what he believes.  He ignores the magazine’s continued and long standing criticism of the Catholic Church, for instance.  Like the Pope he blames the victim.

To stand with Charlie Hebdo isn’t flowers on a celebrity’s grave, an act of condolence of a stranger.  It is to make a stand against those who say “You may not say anything about my religion, because I will be offended.”  That attitude would be unacceptable with any other notion: caricatures of politicians aren’t stopped because those who believe in their policies profoundly are upset.    Criticising someone’s home town may be downright rude, but isn’t something that can never be said.  Yet religeon demands this pass – despite not only the followers of Abraham splinting into three sects that not only disagree vehemently with each other, they can’t even agree among themselves what they believe, yet attack anyone who questions their world view as intolerant.  Einstein may not have liked Niels Bohr’s sub-atomic theories, but he did admit their correctness when proof was shown.  He didn’t feel the need to set off a bomb.

This is the response I put on HuffPo UK

(more…)

Carnival of The Elitist Bastards Sails Again Friday, Jan 8 2010 


“Arrrrgh, you be late.”  The Admiral had obviously had a good Christmas, waving a brand new cutlass in one hand, and a half empty bottle of rum in the other. “We should have been set sail these 8 days hence, you scurvy dog”.

“A number of points there, Admiral”  Hussar said. “One- I had to get a new uniform made.  I refuse to captain the ship looking anything other than absolutely spiffing. Two- there are other battles to be fought, by land as well as sea.  I have just been part of a lengthy campaign as part of a multi-national force giving unreason a good kicking”

And Three- you decided to sail just before Christmas.  Like many other northern Europeans I was engaged in rituals to remind the sun to stop going to bed early.  That, and I had some fine wines in.”

“Ye cur, that bain’t be no way to talk to an Admiral.”

“And that’s another thing.  For this voyage at least we are not going to be having with all this pirate nonsense.” The admiral spat a mouthful of rum out. “Instead I have a letter of Marque signed by a servant of the Crown, instructing us to fight ignorance and pigheadishness where ever we find it.”

“And this Servant of the Crown, would he be standin’ before me in a brand new, and rather foppish, uniform?”

“Might be”

“And could we infer that neither Her Majesty, nor her government know anything about said letter?”

“Ah, but at least it’s officially unofficial!”

At that point the discussion was interrupted by Decrepit Old Fool waving from the gangplank.  “Have I missed the sailing?”

“Well as you seem to be standing on the gangplank, it is safe to assume we are still moored.  You seem anxious to get aboard.”

“Save me from Liberals.”

“We are Liberals.”

“But you don’t put ideology ahead of rational thought like this lot

Ropes were hauled, cutlasses were placed in scabbards with satisfying ‘snick’ noises, and meaningful looks were exchanged as the wind filled the sails, and “HMS Elitist Bastard” pulled away from the quay. Winter clouds scudded across the sky as the ship pushed its way through leaden seas.

“Make a signal Bo’sun – ‘England Expects Every Man Shall Stand His Round.'”

Suddenly from the Crows Nest the lookout ***Dave gave a cry.  He passed a link down, how the Global Warming deniers had accused a childrens website of politicising the debate

“Run out the Carronades, I intend to give them a shot across the bows ” barked Captain Hussar

“I think the The International Conspiracy of Mad Scientists are going to want more that that Captain.”

 The Captain looked at ICMS. “What you got in mind?”  ICMS indicated the fully loaded cannons.  The Captain smiled “Make Ready for Action. Drummer-boy; Beat To Quarters.  Run out the cannons.  Mr ICMS, fire your broadside.”

 “Oh Huzzar!”

 “Cap’n.  They’re making a signal”.

 “Pass me your spy-glass, let me read it – ‘Ha. Ha. Did. Not. Hurt. Us. In. Fact. You. Like. Us. More. Now. Than. You. Used. To.’  What in the name of all that is provable under reasonable controlled conditions are they talking about?  Every one can see the anti-science stand of the American Right is in tatters!”

“Sir, If may have a word” said the maths-geek standing by the ship’s biggest gun, nicknamed ‘Correct Methodology’.

 “Speak up Mr Ecstathy.”

 “I believe they are using an old ploy known as ‘selective statistics’.  Permission to blow a hole in it sir?”

Fire away“.

“Mr Cujo, do you have some shot and shell to add to this little fracas?”

“No Captain, but I know a man who has some tactics worth listening to

Suddenly Captain Hussar fell to the deck, grasping his chest.  “Kiss me Hunter” He gasped.

“Nice try sunshine.  That one isn’t going to sail.  Faking your death isn’t going to get me to kiss you, or disguise the fact you’ve written yourself into a corner.  Do you know how we are going to end this?”

Hussar stood up.  “We could offer them Tim Minchin’s wife.” 

“Don’t seem to be able to rise to that challenge Captain” confirmed a lookout.  “They are retreating while they argue about it”

“The problem is they are like zombie ships. No matter how often you fill them full of holes, and sink the arguments, they keep coming back, having learnt nothing.  What we need is some entertainment.  Lud In The Mist- see if you can get together some kind of Guitar Group.  Something that pisses off the “War, War” crowd.  Tonight we party!”

Not an Atheist Sunday, May 3 2009 


I don’t like calling myself an atheist. Atheism has the idea of rejection behind it, and I do not think too many atheists actually REJECT a god, but rather they do not come to a god in a first place.  We reject the notion of teaching/arguing there is a god, but then we also reject the idea of pixies and pink unicorns running the universe, but no one would ever label themselves as an apixiest or anunicornist.

I’ve decided to use ‘Humanist’ more often- because I know that is one set of Intelligent Designers who CAN change the planet, for good or ill.