Saturday, December 11, 2004

Going the combo route

Too much this week to post separately...

Famous Atheist Now Believes in God
WTF? I can understand there being a black or white element to choosing about religion, i.e. Agnosticism is an uncomfortable shade of gray for me. But this guy's going from black to white (or white to black, depending on perspective) is a mighty big leap. If he is best described as a Deist, that is definitely not Atheist and it is all moot anyway.

What were the mechanics of this transformation and what scientific discoveries were so convincing?

I'd be curious to see his video. If he swapped sides merely b/c life is complex, he is being overly simple. It is almost impossible for the human mind to comprehend, but he is forgetting the millions of years of evolution whereby unfit things just didn't stick around. The life of animals/beings/plants/etc of today fit together today because their lot has been cast to fit together with other life. Those that didn't fit no longer exist, except to say there is a lot of 'forced evolution' happening b/c of man.

Two of my favorite books relating to this topic are:
The botany of desire : a plant's-eye view of the world by Michael Pollan
Guns, germs, and steel : the fates of human societies by Jared M. Diamond

Court: Mom's Eavesdropping Violated Law
This Mom did what all mothers do: she kept her ears pealed. Yes, she used a little extra help, but I believe that nothing coming into my house, my turf, is free from my inquiry and my potential wrath.

It reminds me of a friend with a 14 yo daughter who is the twin separated from birth from my bf's daughter. They even have the same name. The friend's daughter is actually locked in her room each night; she is never without supervision. Her phone calls are taped for content, particularly for who she's talking sex with and about. Amazingly, she was told about the taping at the outset and she fully knows that her mom does the taping, but she still talks junk. Duh?

Much like 'my' L, she just doesn't seem to get the value of 'towing the line' to get something you want later. There's a lot to be said for 'towing the line' and, kiddos, you can get away with a mighty lot of stuff if you just give your parents what they want sometimes. I had a great time partying as a teenager while my parents thought I was an angel. As long as you demonstrate that you know how to act, then its okay to kick up your heels a bit.

Birth Month Seen Linked to Multiple Sclerosis Risk
"People born in May in the northern hemisphere have a higher than average risk of developing multiple sclerosis, researchers said on Tuesday.

An analysis of data from studies of more than 42,000 people in Canada, Britain, Denmark and Sweden showed that May babies have a 13 percent increased chance of suffering from the illness later in life, but that having a November birthday decreased the average odds by 19 percent."

Between the +13% for May and the -19% for November, that's a 32% spread. Unbelievable. Take those odds to Vegas!

The scientist and infertile in me wonders if it is related to another seasonal issue: lower sperm counts in the summer lead to lower pregnancy rates, contrasting with higher sperm counts and pregnancy rates in the winter. May and November are exactly 6 months apart, as are summer and winter. Are summer sperm not only less numerous, are they also more defective?

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