SkeptiSys

January 8, 2011

William James Sidis link added to Blogroll

Filed under: life & death, Strange, Uncategorized — Tags: , — skeptisys @ 2:58 pm

William James Sidis was a famous child prodigy (no, it doesn’t mean he used the internet service provider as a kid).  His childhood accomplishments are legendary – he passed Harvard Medical School anatomy exam at age seven and MIT entrance exam at 8.  Harvard made him wait 2 years for admittance because he was only 9 – he enrolled at Harvard at 11.  The link has been added to the site links under ‘ima nerdy birdy’.

William James Sidis link.

http://www.quantonics.com/The_Prodigy_Review.html

Or, if you prefer an audio introduction to Sidis’ life, The Memory Palace has an excellent podcast, “six scenes from the life of william james sidis”.

http://thememorypalace.us/2011/01/six-scenes-in-the-life-of-william-james-sidis-wonderful-boy/

“‘Intellectualism’ is the belief that our mind comes upon a world complete in itself, and has the duty of ascertaining its contents; but has no power of re-determining its character, for that is already given.

“Among intellectualists two parties may be distinguished. Rationalizing intellectualists lay stress on deductive and ‘dialectic’ arguments, making large use of abstract concepts and pure logic (Hegel, Bradley, Taylor, Royce). Empiricist intellectualists are more ‘scientific,’ and think that the character of the world must be sought in our sensible experiences, and found in hypotheses based exclusively thereon (Clifford, Pearson).

“Both sides insist that in our conclusions personal preferences should play no part, and that no argument from what ought to be to what is, is valid. ‘Faith,’ being the greeting of our whole nature to a kind of world conceived as well adapted to that nature, is forbidden, until purely intellectual evidence that such is the actual world has come in.”

-William James, namesake of William James Sidis (1842-1910), from “Some Problems of Philosophy: A Beginning of an Introduction to Philosophy” –  The quote above is NOT from Sidis, but can be found through the link provided.

William James Sidis' unwanted celebrity began early in life

Photo from ‘teknokekko vuodatus‘.

probably not a good idea to tell the court that "evolution is my God"

2nd pic from sidis.net.  That website is chock full of wonderful Sidis’ work and is also added to the blogroll.  Read “notes on the collection of transfers”(Sidis 1926) in its entirety, then let me know if you still want to be a genius.

November 17, 2010

TSA wants some TNA

Filed under: law, life & death, News, politics — Tags: , , , , — skeptisys @ 1:14 pm

The 4th amendment to the United States Constitution:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

If you have set foot in an American airport, you will notice these rights being violated.  To a more and more extreme degree, these rights are being crushed by Government officials who use fear as their weapon.   Bags and persons have been searched with neither warrant nor cause in actions that could not violate the Constitution in any clearer terms.  Most recently, people, regardless of age, are required to either have their naked body revealed, their entire body  molested (including genitalia and breasts) or be arrested and/or fined a large amount.

Folks, we have finally reached the tipping point.   The citizens will not allow their Constitution violated like this anymore.

John Tyner, an ordinary American, brought these tactics to light by videotaping security at an airport.  He posted the video on his website here.  There are many scary and creepy parts to the video, such as the security peon who describes how he plans to touch Tyner’s legs and crotch, but one phrase stated by security keeps getting repeated in my mind -

you gave up most of your rights when you bought a ticket.

He said what? Yes, the position of these scumbags is that all Constitutional rights are waived once they decided on Air travel.  I guess there is no good argument to why they have to see your kids naked and grope your grandma, so they will come up with anything.

More info on this here at FDL.  Please do sign the petition here to stop this illegal harassment.  Although the petition inaccurately refers to the scanners as ‘porno scanners’ (nudity does not equal pornography), the more signatures we have, the better.

cat torure

enuf! it was de goggie!

 

John Tyner

This is what a hero looks like... any one of us.

pics from I can haz cheezburger and signsonsandiego.    I don’t recall which pic came from which site.

November 3, 2010

Lack of Belief in Gods by QualiaSoup

Filed under: Cool other, God, life & death, pictures and videos — Tags: , , , — skeptisys @ 10:13 am

I thought y’all would like to see an inspirational video on logical thinking by QualiaSoup, who describes himself as a “UK artist and secular humanist interested in critical thinking, science and the natural world.”  QualiaSoup has his own YouTube channel where you can find out more about him, such as his ridiculous sounding real name (it’s Doug).  Enjoy!

October 18, 2010

Obama’s Health Care for the Insurance Companies

Filed under: law, life & death, News, politics — Tags: , , — skeptisys @ 6:07 pm

 

In March 2009, new President Obama held a ‘Health Summit‘ at the White House to ‘kick start his Health Care Plan’.  At the time, the stock prices of the 2 largest Health Insurance Companies were:

Wellpoint, Inc.  $31.01/share

United Health Group Inc. $16.57/share

By June 2009, hatred and distrust of Health Insurance Companies were still high.  Polls showed public support for a public health plan by 72% to 20% and were significantly higher than support of private industry, even among Republicans.

By September 2009, support for a public health plan was even higher, but evidence that the Obama administration had already made a deal with the Health Industry were openly discussed.

In March 2010, Obama signed the Health Care Bill into Law, without the public option.  What was the state of the Health Insurance Industry, hated by the public for bad service and high costs, while people suffered around the country?

At the time the Bill was signed in March 2010, the stock prices of the 2 largest Health Insurance Companies were:

Wellpoint, Inc.  $66.33/share

United Health Group Inc. $35.16/share

Yes, their worth more than doubled. The Obama Health Care Bill is a large financial gift to the Health Industry.

I understand why people continue to support the Obama administration, even if I don’t agree with it.  Here are a few reasons they do:

1. There are only 2 options, Democrats and The Republicans and other right wingers (so called tea party and libertarians): crazy, hateful, ignorant, thieves who constantly get attention, scaring us into believing anything else must be good.

2. Current and past racism in America is so disgusting and vile that instinctively, criticism of the first Black president feels wrong.  This feeling is reenforced by racist criticism coming through from Republicans and Tea Baggers.   Get over it – the Obama administration has made it worse for Black Americans.  Prison rate, poverty, employment, health – everything has gotten much worse since Obama took over.   It is actually more harmful to African Americans to continually support politicians and other governors (Judge Clarence Thomas) based on the color of their skin, rather than looking at their policies.

3. Obama is very convincing.  I can’t listen to him anymore because I know he is lying, but he could convince me to sell my neighbors’ internal organs for donation money.

4. Confirmation bias.  The emotion of support for Obama’s candidacy, as he ran against George W. Bush, the least popular president since  Harry S Truman, convinced everyone that he was the right choice.  This is hard to drop.

5.  Supporting a ‘third party’ that supports the people, rather than the large governing corporations is a long term difficult and sometimes abstract process.  Picking the seemingly best candidate put forth by the same large governing corporations is much easier, although self destructive.

we found the tumor

Comic from HealthCare Now!

October 7, 2010

R.I.P Greg Giraldo

Filed under: humor, life & death, News — Tags: , , , — skeptisys @ 11:22 am

Another of the most talented comedians has stopped performing (excluding an appearance in Weekend and Bernie’s 3).  If you are unfamiliar with Greg Giraldo’s work, start typing into your search engine of preference and laugh away your tears.  To remember Greg, here is a clip from the Cheech & Chong roast.  Warning : you will also die someday!

Greg Giraldo starts at 2:15

April 18, 2009

God plans for his journey to earth: What Would Jesus NOT Do?

Filed under: God, humor, life & death, pictures and videos — Tags: , , , , — skeptisys @ 12:29 pm

Nonstampocollector uses sarcasm and humor to try and determine who wrote the Holy Bible, an all knowing and all loving God or ignorant men from thousands of years ago.

Cat finds Jesus.  srsly!

Cat finds Jesus. srsly!

Here is the quote from the Bible regarding the eating of your own children:

The Holy Bible: King James Version. 2000. The Fifth Book of Moses, Called Deuteronomy 28.

53 And thou shalt eat the fruit of thine own body, the flesh of thy sons and of thy daughters, which the LORD thy God hath given thee, in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee:
54 so that the man that is tender among you, and very delicate, his eye shall be evil toward his brother, and toward the wife of his bosom, and toward the remnant of his children which he shall leave:
55 so that he will not give to any of them of the flesh of his children whom he shall eat: because he hath nothing left him in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee in all thy gates.
56 The tender and delicate woman among you, which would not adventure to set the sole of her foot upon the ground for delicateness and tenderness, her eye shall be evil toward the husband of her bosom, and toward her son, and toward her daughter,
57 and toward her young one that cometh out from between her feet, and toward her children which she shall bear: for she shall eat them 2 Kgs. 6.28, 29 · 4.10 for want of all things secretly in the siege and straitness, wherewith thine enemy shall distress thee in thy gates.
58 ¶ If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that are written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, THE LORD THY GOD;

April 13, 2009

A bad day for my childhood innocence

Filed under: life & death — Tags: , , , , , — skeptisys @ 6:13 pm

This afternoon I learned three icons from my childhood died.

Marilyn Chambers, Harry Kalas, and Mark Fidrych have all very sadly passed away at young ages.

Marilyn Chambers was the first mainstream adult movie star of my awareness.  I have never seen any of her movies, but she was on TV, written up in newspapers, and even had a hit disco single (No nudity in this video, but it’s very suggestive).  Marilyn Chambers was only 56.

Harry Kalas was the voice of the Phillies as long as I can remember, and had the most memorable voice in Sports.  I still get chills when I hear his voice, bringing me back to when Dave Cash and Greg Luzinski were my heroes.  Harry Kalas was only 73.

Harry Kalas (on right) with Richie Ashburn

Harry Kalas (on right) with Richie Ashburn

Mark Fidrych died in an apparent accident, at age 54.  Mark was a star sensation in 1976, about which I recently wrote in this article.

These three icons will be missed by all their adoring fans.  My heartfelt condolences go out to their families.  Hopefully they will gain some solace realizing the joy their loved ones spread to millions in their shining past.

At least Abe Vigoda and Mason Reese are still with us.

Mason Reese was a big star.  no really.

Mason Reese was a big star. no really.

Update:

The video for Marilyn Chambers’ Benihana was apparently removed (thanks to Marcy for the alert).  I was able to find a replacement clip with the song, but for some odd reason the video refers to serial killers.  Perhaps even more disturbing is that I now sing along with Marilyn.

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