Neither a Duran, Nor a Duran

February 1, 2016


The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.      

Egyptian satirical cartoonist Islam Gawish is arrested for “running a website without a license.” NYT reports:

The Sunday raid on the Egypt News Network, where Mr. Gawish worked, was carried out because the website was operating without an official permit, said Maj. Gen. Ayman Helmy, a spokesman for the Interior Ministry.

In an interview, Mohamed Elzyiat, a co-worker of Mr. Gawish, said the police raided the office without a search warrant and seemed to be mostly interested in Mr. Gawish. “They were looking for Islam because of his cartoons that are critical of the regime,” Mr. Elzyiat said. 

Meanwhile, four Coptic Christian teenagers in Egypt are being tried for insulting religion for a satirical video mocking ISIS.

At SciAm, Robert H. Gray says Fermi’s Paradox isn’t Fermi’s, and it isn’t a paradox either:

There is no logical contradiction between the statement “E.T. might exist elsewhere” and the statement “E.T. is not here” because nobody knows that travel between the stars is possible in the first place. 

Also, Duran Duran is neither a Duran, nor a Duran. Discuss. 

Stephen Law is, blessedly, giving the CFI Free Thinking blog a big dose of CONTENT. We have a video of him discussing whether atheism is a “faith position.” And we have posts on the topic of “scientism,” part one and part two.

Simon Davis at VICE has the ups and downs of freezing your brain to achieve something like immortality: “Alcor and the other companies haven’t yet figured out exactly how to turn a cryogenically frozen brain back into a living person.” Bah. 

Televangelism on demand, thanks to Netflix. 

Vitamin C-infused showers for luxury hotels. Why. To stop a scurvy epidemic among the elite?

Moon landing conspiracy theory shot down by math? Dr. David Grimes of the University of Oxford has a formula that he says shows that “a plot involving 2,521 people could not stay hidden from the public’s eye for more than five years,” and the Moon landing conspiracy would have required the complicity of over 400,000 people.

The Indonesian city of Bandung, the third-largest in the country, is demanding that Islamists who are harassing gay people get out.

RNS rounds up its “5 Faith Facts” series for the remaining presidential candidates. 

Bill Maher gives a platform to “HIV quack” Samir Chachoua, who claims he can cure cancer and AIDS

The Hindustan Times looks at the plight of atheist activists in Bangladesh, following last year’s spate of murders. 

Former Michigan governor Jennifer Granholm makes a case for Hillary Clinton by citing polling that shows socialists less popular than atheists. But, like, why you gotta kick us like that, guv?  (You might recall, I wrote an op-ed based on this poll for CNN.)

The head of Glenn Beck’s The Blaze quits, and Beck himself endorses Cruz.  

Stuart Vyse ponders how to make people really care about global warming when its adverse effects aren’t immediately apparent. 

Pluto has “mountains” of water ice. Well, when global warming kills the ski industry… 

Quote of the Day:

Mallory Ortberg on Twitter:

God, grant me the serenity to clap on the 2 and 4, the courage to refrain from clapping on the 1 and 3, and wisdom to know the difference.

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