Monkeys rewrite the King James Bible

CHONGQING — Well, not literally, but pretty close. Via DailyKos, I learned today that Conservapedia (the Bizarro version of Wikipedia) intends to take the King James Bible and rewrite it into plain modern English, making sure the new version has no “liberal bias.” The Conservative Bible will be a wiki, so it will be a group project, rather like giving a large group of monkeys enough time and equipment to recreate the works of William Shakespeare. The rationale and methodology of this ill-conceived project piece of crap are so wrong on so many levels that’s it’s hard to know where to begin. The King James Version (1611) was an English translation from the Hebrew, Latin and Greek texts then available, done entirely by members of the Church of England. It became the “standard Bible” among English-speaking Protestants, largely because of its poetic language and of the breadth of the British Empire. Conservapedia’s head simians plan to retranslate the English in the KJV translation, which is a lot like playing “Telephone” with the Scriptures. Dumb, dumb, dumb. There’s nothing wrong with retranslating the Bible. It’s been done dozens of times already. But the new versions start from the original texts, not ...

For the last time, no! You cannot listen to Obama’s speech! 7

JISHOU, HUNAN — I am now convinced that a certain segment of the US population is now certifiably insane. I have blogged about parents squawking about teachers who used to be porn actresses, about teachers taking kids to art museum to see statues of nude people, about schools allowing creationism to be taught in science classes, about students talking about God and Jesus in commencement addresses. These concerns are understandable, even if I don’t always agree with the parents doing the complaining. Sex and religion are after all touchy subjects. But to object to their children hearing the President of the United States talk about the importance of education? I just don’t get it. They must be crazy. Hey, people! He’s the fucking President of the USA! He won by majority vote. He’s YOUR president. It’s not like he’s Charles Manson or that whacko who held a girl hostage for 18 years in his backyard. Barack Obama, a guy who rose from a low-income, single-parent family to become the leader of the Free World, wants to talk to schoolchildren on Sept. 8 on the importance of staying in school and getting an education. It apparently worked for him just fine. ...

The new rightwing CO2 meme: CO2 is safe and natural

JISHOU, HUNAN — Do people forget basic science when they become Republicans? I’m not talking about understanding complex questions like global warming, stem cells or genetic engineering. I am speaking of really, really basic stuff, like knowing carbon dioxide is not safe. A couple of weeks ago, the shining star of Minnesota Republican dumbness, Rep. Michelle Bachmann, expounded on the House floor that there was no need to tax and cap CO2 emissions, because CO2 is a safe and natural gas. Humans exhale it every day, after all, she said. Now, the Mr. Big of the the GOP, Rush Limbaugh, has repeated the same meme on his ridiculously popular radio show. WTF? Sure, we exhale CO2, for a good reason. Our bodies can’t use it! It’s basic biology: breath air in, extract the oxygen, expel what our bodies don’t need. I learned this in elementary school, for pete’s sake! I thought everyone did. Logically speaking (I know, I know, considering who I am highlighting here, I am asking way too much) … Logically speaking, any idiot, if he or she took time to consider the question, would realize if humans (and other animals) could use CO2 we would NOT exhale ...

The truth behind AM talk radio 2

If you love Rush Limbaugh and others of his ilk, then don’t read the article I’m linking to here. It might demolish your faith in their sincerity and/or expertise. On the other hand, if you hate Limbaugh, et alia, then you can read to your heart’s content. Dan Shelley is a former news and program director of WTMJ, an AM talk outlet in Milwaukee and home of local rightwing radio mouth Charlie Sykes. In a revealing, almost confessional essay for Milwaukee Magazine, Shelley exposes the dirty underside of wingnut talk radio. [Read the comments, too. There’s some gems from the readers.] Above all, Shelley says, talk radio is not journalism; it’s entertainment. The hosts carefully choose their topics and their reactions to those topics specifically to draw huge audiences. There is no pretense to be, as Fox News says, “fair and balanced.” Rather, radio talkers are like rabid pit bulls, who attack the “enemy” with a savageness bordering on demagoguery. To support their whackjob arguments, the hosts carefully weed out facts and data that contradict their theses, while denying callers with different opinions a chance to get any decent airtime. Each host, Sykes included, is like a petty dictator once ...
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