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Links With Your Coffee - Weekend Edition


“Many of them are not trained,” she said of her rivals. “They don’t understand that when you do a reading you hold a person’s life in your hands.”

It is hard to get infected. The immune system is robust and has a multitude of interlinking defenses that are extremely efficient in beating off most pathogens. Most of the time.

Can you prove a negative? I’ve argued that this is the classical last-ditch defense of God, and, beyond the existence of a deity itself, nowhere is that argument more salient that when comes to the soul and the afterlife. How could we possibly get evidence against a soul, or against its immortal survival in regions above? This question also relates to the frequent claims of accommodationists—employees of the National Center for Science Education come to mind—that you can’t test the supernatural.

Well, you can under one condition: if the supernatural is supposed to leave traces in the material world but doesn’t (rain dances and prayer are two examples). A subset of this occurs when “supernatural” claims posit phenomena that are totally incoherent or nonsensical according to what we know about the universe. (Remember, conclusions about the absence of God and his workings are, like all scientific conclusions, provisional. There is evidence for a deity that I would accept; I just haven’t seen any.)



Organic bird?

Taking his joke further, Sal then prayed out aloud saying, “God, I don’t know if you’re real or not, but if you are there, please let my mother win a million dollars.”

He added, “If Jesus wants me to believe in him, that’s what he’ll do”.

What a big "get" for god.

Ok Jesus, give everybody a Million dollars and I am with you too.

Also, the fact that this guy was praying to god on behalf of his mother points to the fact that he wasn't really an Atheist. Maybe an agnostic, likely a non observant christian.

god can have the jackass. Good riddance. Now next time he does a jack-assed thing, news reports should mention how he's a devout christian instead, not how he's a fake atheist.

I take offense at the "most well read cities" link! Even though Amazon has their base of operations here, Seattle has a great collection of used, indie and even some nice Barnes & Nobles spread out throughout the neighborhoods. Why would we shop on Amazon?

I'm sure other cities can relate, too. I've seen that link posted a lot around the web, so I don't blame you for putting it here. It's probably pretty accurate, but Amazon does not set the bar for reading. There are better lists out there, compiled from various sources like library usage and local bookstore sales.

re:"Is Organic food the answer?"

Sounds like Ms. Ronald is taking another of her old Straw Dogs out for a bit of exercise.

"It's not all black and white!" she proclaims.

Those consumers who buy Organic are ignorant, misinformed and otherwise silly. Heck, they don't even know the difference between farming practice and farm size.

There are big Organic farms! Not all small local family farmers grow in accordance with Organic practice! Not every Organic farm is local to every consumer!

There's a breaking news flash if ever there was one.

Most consumers I know, buy Organic because it is grown in a fashion that keeps the soil, water, wildlife, plant diversity,farm workers and farm families healthy. It improves the land on which it is practiced. (That's what sustainable agriculture means). They buy Organic because they do not want pesticides, herbicides, hormones and antibiotics in their food.

Ms. Ronald asserts that "Another reason modern farmers don't switch to organic is due to the complexity and cost of organic fertilizers. Compost and cover crops are the two main nutrient sources of organic growers." She goes on to say how inefficient composting and cover cropping is.

Yea right. "MODERN" farmers don't do Organic. After all, the MODERN farmer knows opening that truckload of ammonia phosphate is a lot easier than producing fertilizer as part of an Organic System.

Those poor old fashioned Organic farmers think they ought operate in a whole systems fashion. Silly folk, they think caring properly for the Earth's Eco-system demands that the cost accounting in resource use and pollution must include the full life cycle of that product, from mining, transport, manufacture or production to disposition. They think it's better to utilize the natural waste products from one part of a farm ecosystem to fertilize another part of that system. They don't understand that only poor folk in other countries must endure the unhealthy work environments for factory workers in that toxic synthetic fertilizer manufacturing process. The "Modern" farmer writes that off as someone else's problem.

Most consumers I know, also like to buy locally produced product. They buy local when they can not because they are too ignorant to know the difference between distance shipped and farming practice, but because the produce is fresher, and they can if they wish, see for themselves that the critters are raised in humane and healthy conditions. They also like local because they know that global food delivery systems are complex and fragile things, and that a diverse food supply not so dependent on transport adds to their food security.

They are not alone in this belief, it is not for nothing that the most serious and intractable issues at the WTO relate to nearly every country requiring some protection for their indigenous agriculture.

The consumers I know, also want to support local food purchase for the same reason that they frequent local businesses. They know more of the money exchanged stays in the community.

I sort of wondered if norm thought that article was a good arguement.

The article stuck me as such a mess of random arguements all mashed together.

Also, from folks I know, the industry is now trying to recapture the word "sustainability". Argueing that thier methods are in some ways more sustainable. Which I guess is a fine arguement, but why is this woman putting the same idea forward like it is her own and not reporting on the opinion put forth by the farmign industry?

re: Raw Milk

re: raw milk

IMO, unless the milk is to be used for making hard cheeses (where pasturization is not required), it should be pasturized. I admit to not following this rule all the time, for when I'm out of milk for my coffee, it's a lot easier to take a bottle out to the pasture and ask a cow to let me milk out a pint or so,than it is to drive all the way into town.

What I don't like, is Ultra pasteurization, where the milk is heated up to 280 degrees for 2 seconds (instead of 167 degrees for 15 seconds for normal pasturizing). Ultra pasturized milk is cooked. No other way to describe it. The milk tastes cooked, the cream doesn't whip well, and many more nutrients are destroyed by the process. Many think that the increase in lactose intolerance is due to this practice. Additional shelf life is the only justification for it.

Also, I'm not fond of homoginized milk, not because I think it unhealthy, but because I like scooping off that cream top. And, I buy milk in glass bottles because I don't like the BPA plastic linings in the cardboard milk cartons.

Sorry, Amazon, but reading "The Autobiography (Ghostwritten) of Jersey Shore's Snooki" does not qualify one as "well read."

I wonder that too. People buy books, but have you noticed which books are coming out regularly? You'd get a better education by watching an episode of House.

I live in a city--Philadelphia--with a phenomenal public library system. So what's the point wasting money buying books I can get for free at my library?

So Amazon is really not tracking how "well read" an area is, but rather it is tracking places where more disposable income is spent for books and periodicals. That's not the same thing. If I read 100 books this year I got for free from my library, Amazon doesn't have a fucking clue about it. And look at all the money I saved. That makes me twice as smart.

"well read" is also different than "read"

You'd get a better education by watching an episode of House.

agreed. or, like, figuring out for yourself what you're interested in instead of going with the media flow and trying something totally crazy, like, going to the library (which is much easier than using a computer intelligently- fewer distractions.)

but i realize that, as usual, i'm asking too much.

i see max already had the same idea.

Somehow the impact of my comparison would have been less if I'd said "you'd get a better education out of going to the library and reading educational books".


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