Richard Lawrence's Blog (12)

Sarah Huckabee-Sanders on the stripping of children from their parents | Gott Mit Uns

In a rather testy exchange today reporters grilled the White House Press Secretary about the current administration's decision to move from a civil to a criminal stance regarding people crossing the US/Mexican border.  By classifying this as a crime it allows the ICE agents to separate the children from their parents. You can listen to Session's decision…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on June 14, 2018 at 8:00pm — 1 Comment

Review: Deep Thinking: Where Machine Intelligence Ends and Human Creativity Begins by Garry Kasparov

Artificial Intelligence is a phrase that often promotes a strong reaction in a lot of people who hear it. There are the gloom and doom prognosticators who tell us that 'Judgement Day', the day the intelligent machines take over and decide we are more trouble than we are worth and wipe us out is near. There are also the overly optimistic prognosticators which tell us that the day AI will take over and we will enter a golden age of humanity beyond our wildest dreams is near. Kasparov charts a…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on March 19, 2018 at 5:53pm — 1 Comment

The Thin Veneer of Deeply Held Religious Beliefs

"I have met some highly intelligent believers, but history has no record to say that [s]he knew or understood the mind of god. Yet this is precisely the qualification which the godly must claim—so modestly and so humbly—to possess. It is time to withdraw our 'respect' from such fantastic claims, all of them aimed at the exertion of power over other humans in the real and material world.”

― Christopher Hitchens, The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on March 14, 2018 at 6:00pm — 4 Comments

The Death of a Friend

“A melancholy lesson of advancing years is the realization that you can't make old friends.”― Christopher Hitchens

Monday mornings and I have never managed to come to any sort of rapprochement.  Mondays are not the sort of day one looks forward to for obvious reasons but some are far worse than others.  For me, this last Monday was one of the more terrible ones.  I was greeted with the news that an old friend had finally lost his ten year battle with cancer.  The news from…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on March 12, 2018 at 2:00pm — No Comments

The Laurence Krauss Debacle

A recent Buzzfeed article by  Peter Aldhous Azeen Ghorayshi

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Added by Richard Lawrence on February 24, 2018 at 9:00pm — 19 Comments

The Berlin Wall - A Melancholy Anniversary

“Maybe it meant something. Maybe not, in the long run, but no explanation, no mix of words or music or memories can touch that sense of knowing that you were there and alive in that corner of time and the world. Whatever it meant.”

― Hunter S. Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

This month marked what should be a joyous anniversary of the Mauerfall - the fall of the Berlin Wall.  For on the fifth of February the Wall had been down as long as it had been up;  precisely…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on February 17, 2018 at 7:33pm — 4 Comments

The human species – a naturalist conjecture

One question still unanswered in biology and one that is of special interest to me is what happened to our evolutionary branch that made us so different than our nearest relatives on the evolutionary tree, the chimpanzees and bonobos? Putting aside supernatural explanations as well as wild speculation about aliens doing genetic experiments on our race as something to do while taking a break from construction of the pyramids, the correct explanation will be provided by science.

An…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on February 11, 2018 at 7:55pm — 2 Comments

Review: The Faith of Christopher Hitchens by Larry Taunton

I had read a lot of vitriol from the secular community regarding this book and made a point of re-reading Hitch-22 since Taunton referenced it in his opening description of Christopher Hitchens. So armed I was looking forward to reading it to see if all the ruckus was justified. As it turns out, the book is rather anti-climactic. There is nothing in the book that would lead one to think there was any deathbed conversion. I have respect for Taunton insofar as any discussions of conversion he…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on February 7, 2018 at 11:19am — 1 Comment

Life does begin at conception – a secular view

A recent article from Newsweek was making the rounds in social media this week reporting on the new strategic draft issued by the Department of Health and Human services.  The draft includes language that defines life as beginning at conception.

"HHS accomplishes its mission through programs and initiatives that cover a wide spectrum of…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on February 4, 2018 at 10:19pm — 5 Comments

Review: Hitch-22 by Christopher Hitchens

“I became a journalist because I did not want to rely on newspapers for information.”

― Christopher Hitchens

I started to read Larry Taunton's book, "The Faith of Christopher Hitchens" and he begins the book by painting a picture based on "Hitch 22", Christopher Hitchens' autobiography. Having read "Hitch 22" when it first came out I was struck how the impressions that Taunton was getting and the seemed importance he was assigning to them were not jibbing with my recollections so…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on February 1, 2018 at 8:40pm — 5 Comments

It's All About the Guns.......again

The recent tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut is one of the most horrible in recent memory.  The actions of that young man were as incomprehensible as they were inexcusable and we as a country need to learn from what happened to better protect ourselves and our children.  What is even more inexcusable and, in my mind just as disgusting, is the way gun control advocates use this tragedy to support their agenda.  

As the details unfold we are starting to see there was a lot of anger and…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on December 19, 2012 at 3:03pm — 13 Comments

Muslim Extremism and the US Response - Politics through the lens of Naturalism

The internet is once again abuzz over the latest atrocities committed against US citizens and diplomats by thugs intoxicated on a belly full of the religious hate being force-fed to them.  Over in the West the debate, at least the intramural one in the Western world, seems to be centered around what is the proper burden level of blame the country responsible for this video should bear in all this.  Being the country responsible equals being the eminent domain owner of the dirt upon which…

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Added by Richard Lawrence on September 21, 2012 at 1:20am — 6 Comments

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