1997 Thoughts (my most thoughtfull year)…

The Origin of Gullibility, Religion,
And Other Insanities: A Theory

Major update April 29th, 1998
– update April 24th, 1997
– new March 20th, 1997

“Ignorance of the Laws of Science
Is No Excuse”

David L. Freitag
December 17th, 1997

The world would be a far better place if no one ever used a personal pronoun
followed by the word “people,” “kind,” or “race” ever again…

December 3rd, 1997

Anyone who doesn’t believe
man descended from apes
has never watched small children play…

October 21st, 1997

If “There are no Atheists in Foxholes”
does that mean that if everyone was an atheist
there’d be no wars?

September 23rd, 1997

“What if there were no hypothetical situations?”

John Mendoza
July 30th, 1997

People are amazing.
Your average American parent will say with anger hundreds of times to their kids
“Don’t be smart!”
then have the gall to be surprised when they end up not…

June 17th, 1997

You know, most people are really impressed by the fact
that your average Plains Indian
“used every part of the buffalo”
Yet really disgusted to learn your average Chicago slaughterhouse
does the same with a cow…

June 17th, 1997

The statement “It’ll get worse before it’ll get better” is true,
unfortunately, it’ll often get worse before it gets worse too
and there’s no good way to differentiate between the two…

June 5th, 1997

By my standards, any deity worthy of being worshipped
would not want it…

…which gives you an idea of the contempt I hold for gods that require worship,
upon pain of eternal damnation…

June 3rd, 1997

I think I missed the memo where they told us the word “used” is now to be replaced by the word “pre-owned…”

…and positive I missed the changeover notification to “nearly new”…

May 29th, 1997

In some sense, everything we do makes history for we are history…

James Burke
May 21st, 1997

The “Secret of the Universe” may be
that there isn’t one…

May 13th, 1997

It is perhaps telling that the one belief system with actual, physical evidence for its beliefs
– Namely, the belief in Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy –
is the one belief system everyone eventually declares is a myth…

May 6th, 1997

I strongly suspect that no government can, in the end, do more good than harm – a sorta political version of the laws of thermodynamics.

It’s not because of vast conspiracies, or that the rulers are evil, or anything correctable, it’s just something that is, like apples falling from apple trees.

April 29th, 1997

You know, “I Want to Believe” may be the single most dangerous slogan ever invented…

April 29th, 1997

It’s popular these days to refer to nature as a “fragile, delicate web”
but I doubt this is true.
In reality, nature is a rather robust, adaptive network,
capable of surviving huge changes and disasters
– if it weren’t, it wouldn’t be here now.
Quite frankly, the idea that man is the most disastrous thing to happen to nature
is a homocentric conceit of the worst kind.

April 25th, 1997

At exactly what point did we become legally responsible for everybody except ourselves?

April 9th, 1997

Setting a Fox to guard a henhouse doesn’t work terribly well
However, neither does having the chickens guard it
Thus, the problems with both autocracy and democracy…

March 20th, 1997

I am not my ancestors
Why are you yours?

February 10th, 1997

“All The Universe or Nothing,
Which is it to be?”

From “Things to Come”
February 4th, 1997

People often say to those depressed about their lives
“Cheer up, you’re better off than most people”
to which I have to ask, exactly what part of
“Don’t worry, your life can still get worse”
did you think was going to cheer them up?

February 3rd, 1997

Governments, indeed, all groups or organizations
are made up of individuals
I think this is often forgotten…

February 3rd, 1997

The Primary Problem With Representative Government
Is That It Very Often Is…

January 21st, 1997

Barbecue Sauce is the Universal Condiment…

January 15th, 1997

Johnson’s Law:
“If You Can Successfully Outlaw Something
You Didn’t Need To”

January 8th, 1997
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