Added by Paul 08 January 2009 21:50
Where's Alanis when you need her?
In response to the charmingly understated 'there is probably no god' bus campaign, madman Stephen Green of the Christian Voice has complained to the Advertising Standards on the grounds that the ads "break rules on substantiation and truthfulness".
"There is plenty of evidence for God, from people's personal experience, to the complexity, interdependence, beauty and design of the natural world" he says. Where do you start? You can't. The chap's too far gone.
If the best you can offer up is "people's personal experience" then you have to say that's a woeful intellectual position to hold. My personal experience, which I immodestly rate a good deal above average, does not lead me to the conclusion that there is a god, on the contrary. In fact, given the church attendances in this country, I'd say the balance of belief is very much against.
On a subject related to 'substantiation' we should not pass up the opportunity to mock the Pope and his fellow Catholics who believe in transubstantiation
. This requires the believer to accept that the bread and wine they take from their priest turns quite literally (and not even in the sports commentator's sense) into the body and blood of Christ. This is *not* a metaphor. This is literally true apparently.
Honestly, you couldn't make it up.
PS Noah was 950 years old apparently.
Added by steve 09 January 2009 10:10
Surely, this is all the evidence you need. :)
Added by stones 09 January 2009 12:10
Added by Paul 09 January 2009 12:58
In what must surely be considered a victory for the Daily Mail and 'alternative medicine' advocates everywhere we may now be facing a measles epidemic.
It was only a matter of time before the ridiculous, spiteful and totally misguided campaign waged against the perfectly safe MMR vaccine would get the outcome it deserved.
Added by Paul 09 January 2009 19:34
I have an iPod. I've bought Rach and iPod and an iBook. So I'm not an out-and-out macophobe.
But, I'm not a fan either. I sign into my iTunes account with an email account of firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why? Well can someone explain to me, why, pretty much every time I launch iTunes, does it need to do a fucking update? And, if I make the mistake of doing the update does the irritation stop there? No it fucking doesn't. Do I want the fucking QuickTime icon in my quick launch bar? I certainly didn't ask for it. And do I really need to restart my fucking PC? Jesus Christ Apple, give me a break.
Added by Paul 09 January 2009 21:02
Make your own with this website.
Added by Paul 09 January 2009 21:58
On a slightly more positive note :-) Masterchef is back on the telly. I watch very little TV indeed, but I have an unhealthly level on interest in BBC2's cooking competition output - specifically Masterchef and Great British Menu.
I enjoy Masterchef almost because of it's faults, not least the dubious authority of the presenters - especially self-styled "ingredients expert" Greg Wallace. Add to that the over the top "cooking doesn't get tougher than this" nonsense, the irritating "tabloid-tagging" voiceover, daft quarter-final elimination for not begging enough and the oversincere contestants there should be a lot not to like.
However, it all justs works for me in the end. Though I miss Michel Roux Jr from the last series :-(.
Added by Paul 11 January 2009 15:15
Not everyone is a fan :-)
"An unsavoury affront to all the great manly things that gaming has always proudly stood-sat down-for. Aerobics? Muscle conditioning? BMI? If you're tempted to "give it a try" ask yourself this- where will it end? Soya milk? a gender change? Free range wheatgrass and vegan salads? Get a grip, sit your hairy man-butt down and kill some more pretend terrrists."
Added by Paul 12 January 2009 08:12
Ronnie O'Sullivan may very well be the second greatest man ever to pick up a queue (after the mighty Hendry of course) but, boy, does he make a meal of it.
On and on. Constant moaning. Threatening to quit the game. I can't be the only one sick of his constant self-indulgent, self-centred bleatings.
Which is not to say that the game is not being run into the ground by the game's governing body.
However, to say this
"There are little rules brought in like penalising players for conceding when you don't need snookers."
is a bit gauling to say the least. The reason that 'little rules' like this are being brought into the game is that there's never been such a self-centred little twat with so little regard for his fellow players before. The fact that rules are being introduced to compensate for specifically his lack of respect and plain bad manners should be a matter of considerable shame.
Added by Paul 12 January 2009 08:24
Nay doubt about it... skiing is a fantastic way to spend time.
Alas, getting to the resort is pretty much a nightmare - not least if you get a package holiday. Doubtless part of the problem is the necessary remoteness of the actual ski resort but airports are unnecessarily unbearable. If I have take my belt and shoes off one more fucking time...
Anyway, there's a link here to a 'top gear style' race between getting the train or flying.
Added by Paul 12 January 2009 21:18
It's going to be an exciting year in pro cycling I reckon. Aside from Armstrong's return, Mark Cavendish is destined for great things.
From the article
"I'm resigned to it really," admits Cavendish. "I've been back at home on the Isle of Man for most of the winter and, in fairness they get behind me there, but a lady came up to me in Tesco the other day and said 'bad luck in the Tour de France.'" "Bad luck! I won four bloody stages in eight days. On the Tour de France against every single last one of the world's greatest cyclists who were all riding flat out. Bad luck. I had to smile."
Added by Paul 13 January 2009 21:53
Not for the reason that I was taught.
From the site...
Try this: go to the sink and get a clear drinking glass. Start the water running so that it’s a very thin but steady trickle and bring an outer, rounded part of the glass slowly towards the stream. Watch what happens when you touch it. The glass grabs the stream and forcibly wraps it around itself!
On a plane this equates to grabbing the air going over the top of the wing and pulling it snug to the downward sloping wing surface. This redirects massive amounts of air toward the ground, which results in an upward force, i.e. lift.
So screw you Bernoulli ;-)
Added by Paul 15 January 2009 13:46
Obviously I'm on spoof alert.
Trouble is, christians are so nutty, it's hard to tell where they might draw the line.
I'm taking this one straight!
Added by Paul 16 January 2009 14:52
From the BBC
"I was just about to board and there it was staring me in the face, my first reaction was shock horror.
"I felt that I could not drive that bus, I told my managers and they said they haven't got another one and I thought I better go home, so I did.
"I think it was the starkness of this advert which implied there was no God."
Added by Paul 17 January 2009 07:44
The 'atheist bus' campaign reminds me of a biology experiment I did at school. In order to estimate the number of worms in a field (or something like that) we marked off an area that soaked it in formaldehyde (does that sound like a plausible substance for such an experiment?). The worms go a bit mental and dutifully come to the surface so that they can be counted. I suspect this may be a flawed enterprise - the well-hard worms are probably wise to this ruse and ride the storm.
The problem is this I think - as other non-believers will be aware; no matter how gently you try (and this is by no means my forte) there's no nice way to tell people you don't believe in their 'father christmas'. It's almost impossible not to cause offence.
If you tell a physicist that Newton's Second Law is incorrect he will not get offended. Nor angry. Not accuse you of being arrogant. He won't burn down your house. Or fly planes into buildings. Or will not try and kill you. Or write a comically defensive and philosophically bereft blog entry
Critising a religious belief falls into a different category. A theist does not have the confidence and answers that a physicist has and, alas, he or she is defenceless. This defencelessness leads to three different types of response - daft rebuttals, anger or personal assaults. More typically all three to differing extents.
The trouble for even the nicest of non-believers, is that there are an uncountable number of reasons not to believe in god. And not one in favour. And for believers, just as aware of the absurdity, *know* that there is a god.
If religion could be ignored and was a purely personal matter then I think we would have no problem. I'm sure I hold plenty of beliefs that many would consider strange. But my beliefs do not exclude people from schools. Or have a big influence on shaping the law. Or give me the right to tell people what they should or shouldn't be doing. Or cause wars.
Added by Paul 17 January 2009 07:50
... buy a new car!
"Nissan has announced plans to cut its Sunderland workforce by 1,200. Thousands of unsold cars are stored around the factory's test track"
Added by Jim Chalmers 17 January 2009 09:24
Check out Ankara's only English language reports and gossip of footie action of Ankara's two teams, Ankaragucu and Genclerbirligi.
A must read for all footie fanatiks !
From Eski Kanka Jim
Added by Paul 17 January 2009 16:58
My 5 year old laptop has been relegated to the spare room where it plays me ripped DVDs and stuff from BBC iPlayer preventing me going completely insane whilst I work on the turbo trainer (stationary cycle trainer).
This is not exactly, from a operating system and hardware perspective, what you might call heavy lifting. But, boy was Windows XP making a meal of it. It took 3 minutes to chug away this morning switching windows between Media Player and Explorer.
Whilst I mulled my options, including buying a new cheap laptop I thought - why not give Ubuntu (linux for noobs) a go?
And... it's bloody brilliant.
With about 10 minutes of investment of my time (to download the OS, copy to a CD, and fill out my details during the setup screen) I am up and running.
My ancient laptop is now quicker than my quad core 4gb vista machine. Granted, fresh installs are always quicker, but the difference is embarrassing. For Microsoft that is. Or it would be if they had an ounce of self-awareness.
I can't use linux for my day-to-day work. But for a 'netbook' solution or revitalising and old pc, I don't think it can be beat.
Added by stones 20 January 2009 14:05
Well, they've done it again.
I'm struggling to think of another band that have ridden for so long on the coat-tails success of a single song (the admittedly majestic Take Me Out).
We had the first album of pretentious drivel, the second album which failed to live up to the depressingly low quality of the first, and now new single Ulysses which makes me want to hurl the DAB out of the window every time it comes on.
Utter, utter ****s
Added by Paul 20 January 2009 21:20
Wikipedia's database structure.
Surprisingly simple and, er, some horrid conventions...
Added by Paul 23 January 2009 21:26
A new website of ours goes live - lowcostholidays.com.
It has been promoted in a most wonderful way by the genius MD of lowcostbeds - Paul Evans. Here's a clip from youtube...
Added by Andy K 25 January 2009 08:09
I know this is probably the sort of article you may expect to see in The Times, and i'm aware the Guardian tends to get the lagest slice of the airtime pie on this blog, but some surprising/worrying statistics all the same.
Added by Paul 25 January 2009 09:10
Arrggh.. Is it time for the generally passive, right-thinking, intelligent masses to rise up against the fucking Daily Mail and their cuntish readers?
Honestly. Is there a more despicable subset of our society than the "upper" working class, curtain-twitching, judgemental, mawkish, ill-educated, hate-filled, compassion-less (unless it's a animal on the continent), humourless, poorly-read, censorious, faux-offended, house-price obsessed, jealous, hectoring and god-fearing losers that read the Daily Heil?
Anyway, all ears were pricked this weekend and the, generally superb, Jonathan Ross returns to work. I can take or leave his TV show, but his radio 2 show on Saturday is great.
If the worst he did was say "pooh" the Daily Heil would still have had a big splash on the story. I think maybe the problem is that some people do not understand that there is such a thing as a joke. Anyway, predictably the humourous presenter made some jokes! Here's the response and some comments from the readership...
"Davies said that he had been doing some DIY at his house in Spain, and referred to an ‘older woman’ who lives nearby who ‘keeps trying to kiss me...she must be about 80, I reckon’.
Ross replied: ‘Oh God. I think you should, just for charity. Give her one last night, will you? One last night before the grave. Would it kill you?’"
Is that really a sick joke? Is anyone really offended by that? Well, just a couple of cunts.
"Why is the BBC pandering to this revolting idiot, what will we get next, Roy Chubby Brown presenting the news?"
"Its obvious Mr Ross has not learned his lesson."
"The BBC should just pay him off . We don't want this bufoon in our lives."
"He will come to grief...Bet on it."
"Foul mouth, Idiot SACK HIM"
"Ross is from the gutter, time he was returned there!"
"Looks like a lout, talks like a lout. No change - no surprise."
Added by Paul 26 January 2009 08:12
In a shock revelation, it turns out that not only does God exist, but there are literally 100s of proofs.
121. ARGUMENT FROM PERSECUTION (II)
(1) Jesus said that people would make fun of Christians.
(2) I am an idiot.
(3) People often point that out.
(4) Therefore, God exists.
138. ARGUMENT FROM LACK OF EVIDENCE (I)
(1) I believe that if God exists, there will be no evidence for his existence.
(2) There is no evidence for the existence of God.
(3) Therefore, God exists.
36. ARGUMENT FROM INCOMPLETE DEVASTATION
(1) A plane crashed killing 143 passengers and crew.
(2) But one child survived with only third-degree burns.
(3) Therefore, God exists.
Added by Paul 26 January 2009 20:25
If there's something that pisses me off, it's what Microsoft have done to Explorer in Vista.
I seem to waste of lot of my time waiting for Vista to slowly calculate the *very worst possible way* to display folder contents.
For the love of all that is holy could someone explain why, when there is not a single picture (with the exception of the ico) in this folder, I get this shit
It makes no sense. I'm a grown up and an experienced user - can I please, please, just have the details view for every folder. For ever.
And, one more thing. When I open explorer, how about giving me a little flash of the c:\ drive?
Added by Nathan 27 January 2009 14:56
UK taxpayer's forced by the unelected Mandelson to give money to the Indian billionaire to make uneconomic Jaguars and Range Rovers for the wealthy. Bonkers.
Added by Dave 28 January 2009 12:20
Lengthy but great article.
Added by Paul 28 January 2009 22:34
Acupuncture, long time the poster boy of the alternative medicine world, looks pretty much like it doesn't work.
"The effect is so small that it is not statistically significant, and does not even register as "minimal", they said."
Well, rather it does work, but no better than 'sham acupuncture' where needles are stuck in any old where.
When trying to assess the feasibility and likely efficacy of a medical treatment I think that 2 steps are required.
First, assess the theory. The theory behind most alternative medicines sounds to me little more than hocus pocus. Lots of undetectable 'energies', 'vibrational frequencies', 'chakras' and various other things that don't appear to exist. Sticking needles into people, massaging their feet (reflexology) and giving people water (homeopathy) all sound a fraction from the absurd.
However, quantum theory looks absurd too. And evolution can sound pretty far-fetched. Even gravity and a spherical earth are counter-intuitive. So, apparent absurdity does not make something not necessary truthful. What we need is some evidence. Quantum theory - lots of evidence. Evolution - lots of evidence. And so on.
Most - if not all - alternative medicine? No evidence. The trials simply don't back up the theory.
For me, extraordinary claims require extraordinary of evidence. Homeopathy sounds nuts, but far worse, there is *no evidence that it works either*.
Extraordinary claims and no evidence - nonsense I say :-)
Added by stones 29 January 2009 17:12
Working in town everyday, you sort of forget how amazing some of the architecture actually is.
*not posting an image because it always breaks smiley*
Added by Paul 30 January 2009 13:11
Sometimes you can't tell the spoof from the real.
Check the comments.
Maybe these guys should ask themselves a simple question - under what circumstances does an employer choose a foreign worker over one born in the UK?
Added by Paul 31 January 2009 07:19
Just to prove I'm never afraid to be behind the curve here - Stephen Fry's blog
The man's a legend, proving that being very clever, learned and amusing are after all merit-worthing characteristics.