Category: Misc

Self Help Books

Most self help books are written in two halves.  In the first half, the author tries to convince you that there is a problem.  Most of the time, this is a problem you may suppose that you have and so are predisposed to believe what the author says.  In the second half, the author tries to convince you he or she has the solution to your problem.

Now imagine such a book written by someone who doesn’t like you.

(With a bit of luck, you’ll never pick one up again.)

My cat ate my wetsuit.

My cat, Floozie, likes to chew on my neoprene netbook bag, although she knows very well that she’s not allowed.  This set me wondering if cats chewing neoprene is a common problem – after all, it does have a potentially chewy texture (no, I haven’t tried).  So I Googled “my cat ate my wetsuit” and was bemused to get no hits at all.  How many 5 word sentences have no Google hits?  Anyone?

(Also, not three minutes after writing this post, I Googled “my cat ate my wetsuit” again, and got this URL.  That was quick!)

John Gray and the atheist delusion.

Not the author of Man are from Mars and similar populist drivel, but John Gray the British philosopher has an interesting take on what he calls the New Atheists.  I found a lecture by him on YouTube  (parts 1, 2, 3, & 4 ) in which he deftly skewers the likes of Dawkins, Dennet, et al., pointing out that their position is far from novel, and, if anything, rather a caricature of a line of thought with an honourable pedigree.  You can find a text summary of his views in The Guardian (I suppose, once in a while, even they have to publish something worth reading).

An interesting tidbit: suicide bombing was not invented by any religiously driven ideology, but by the Tamil Tigers, a wholly atheist and Marxist group with no illusions about earning themselves a place in paradise surrounded by doting virgins by blowing themselves to pink mist along with anyone who happened to be standing nearby.  No, for these guys, pressing that switch finished it thoroughly and proved that you don’t need religion to engender terrorism.

Panorama theme by Themocracy