"The Christian explanation for the evidence that we see before us is this:
God exists, and God answers prayers, but for some reason God chooses to ignore the prayers of amputees. We don't have a good explanation for why God acts this way, and it does seem to contradict what Jesus teaches about prayer in the Bible, but clearly God has his divine reasons.

"Now let's look at the situation with amputees from another point of view. This explanation is more straightforward:
God is imaginary. "

..."If you are the sort of person who believes in chains of logic, then the problem is this: Simply by looking at amputees, the Christian faith collapses."

-- from Chapter 5 of

If you have time to read just one page today, try this one.


Sam Seder just offered a funny idea: if Scooter or Rove know too much and Bush wanted to keep them quiet, he could declare them "enemy combatants" and whisk them off to some undisclosed location where they could be interrogated, held indefinitely with no charges brought against them, no access to legal counsel, and most importantly incommunicado.

Update, a few hours later: Making my daily rounds at, I saw that Sam Seder wasn't the only one thinking along these lines.


For the absolute best, most personal reporting on Katrina survivors, look through September 2005 archives of the radio show This American Life.
If they ever make a movie about Abu Ghraib
behind the scenes players, that actress
Molly Price from Third Watch:

...could pass for Col. Janis Karpinski [former Brigadier Gen.
in charge of Abu Ghraib]
A little disappointing, but better than $0.

My blog is worth $1,129.08.
How much is your blog worth?

If you are young enough that your first memory of Salman Rushdie was the fatwa after he wrote Satanic Verses, and if you avoided him just because you weren't interested in that stuff, you would do well to look for his earlier novel Midnight's Children at your library. Try to find a hardcover edition, because you'll want something heavy with which to punish yourself after you see how good this is.


You know when they say "above 14th street" or "below 14th street" referring to Manhattan? Clutch your pearls, because I DON'T KNOW WHAT THEY MEAN!

I infer that it means either north/south or east/west from 14th street, but I have not studied Manhattan enough to have memorized which it is. Even worse, I don't care.


Crocheted cell phone hugger. Might be able to modify this for mp3 player hugger.


bush jaw - Google Search

"If he has schizophrenia, he handles it well."
-- Melinda Smith, commenting on the wild rumors that the wobbling and thrusting of Bush's jaw in recent speeches may be tardive dyskinesia, which can be caused by some psychiatric medications.

[I'm not saying I believe the rumor. Now we have to argue whether a hypothetical good president who was not clearly guilty of many crimes and violations of the constitution, but who managed his schizophrenia well, should be accepted as president.]



Evidence of Intelligent Design found in the interaction of Penne Rigate, Rigatoni and dihydrogen monoxide.
New Orleans police beat 64 year-old retired elementary school teacher, reporting that there were no nuns or puppies or schoolgirls available for beating just then.


Boy George.


Tomato Soup with Chili Beans
2 cups beef broth
3 cups tomato juice
3 Tbsp corn starch
14 oz can of chili beans

Heat broth and tomato juice. Scoop out one quarter cup of it to mix with the corn starch. When your quarter cup of starchy broth is smooth, pour it into the simmering broth. Add beans. Simmer until it reaches the thickness that you like.


Around the world are have-cars, have-nots. In China, villagers fight back, attack autos.
"In a village in Zhejiang province, residents destroyed more than 60 cars in April. In July in Chizhou, in Anhui province, a mob of 10,000 flipped, smashed and torched three police cars and a Toyota sedan after the sedan collided with a bicyclist."

Compare this with Detroit in the 1980s, when some auto workers and other frightened laborers paid $1 each to bash Japanese cars with sledge hammers like a carnival game. Go figure.


"Thank you, Mr. President. Thank you very much. I am very grateful for the confidence in me that you have shown by this nomination, and, certainly, I am
humbled by it.