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Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on March 11, 2009

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Signing of Stem Cell Executive Order and Scientific Integrity Presidential Memorandum

Posted in White House by Skepdude on March 9, 2009

I agree with my co-conspirator, Rodibidably, that generally we don’t comment on linked items, but thank God (hehe), it’s about time.

Today, with the Executive Order I am about to sign, we will bring the change that so many scientists and researchers; doctors and innovators; patients and loved ones have hoped for, and fought for, these past eight years: we will lift the ban on federal funding for promising embryonic stem cell research. We will vigorously support scientists who pursue this research. And we will aim for America to lead the world in the discoveries it one day may yield.

At this moment, the full promise of stem cell research remains unknown, and it should not be overstated. But scientists believe these tiny cells may have the potential to help us understand, and possibly cure, some of our most devastating diseases and conditions. To regenerate a severed spinal cord and lift someone from a wheelchair. To spur insulin production and spare a child from a lifetime of needles. To treat Parkinson’s, cancer, heart disease and others that affect millions of Americans and the people who love them.

But that potential will not reveal itself on its own. Medical miracles do not happen simply by accident. They result from painstaking and costly research – from years of lonely trial and error, much of which never bears fruit – and from a government willing to support that work. From life-saving vaccines, to pioneering cancer treatments, to the sequencing of the human genome – that is the story of scientific progress in America. When government fails to make these investments, opportunities are missed. Promising avenues go unexplored. Some of our best scientists leave for other countries that will sponsor their work. And those countries may surge ahead of ours in the advances that transform our lives.

But in recent years, when it comes to stem cell research, rather than furthering discovery, our government has forced what I believe is a false choice between sound science and moral values. In this case, I believe the two are not inconsistent. As a person of faith, I believe we are called to care for each other and work to ease human suffering. I believe we have been given the capacity and will to pursue this research – and the humanity and conscience to do so responsibly.

It is a difficult and delicate balance. Many thoughtful and decent people are conflicted about, or strongly oppose, this research. I understand their concerns, and we must respect their point of view.

But after much discussion, debate and reflection, the proper course has become clear. The majority of Americans – from across the political spectrum, and of all backgrounds and beliefs – have come to a consensus that we should pursue this research. That the potential it offers is great, and with proper guidelines and strict oversight, the perils can be avoided.

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY AT “WHITEHOUSE.GOV”

Obama Watch

Posted in politics, Skepdude by Skepdude on February 6, 2009

This is not a political blog. Nevertheless, I feel that the, so-far deserved, adulation showered on President Obama comes with the consequence of accountability. As such I have decided to deviate a little from the regular content of Skepfeeds to create this Obama Watch list in which I will try to gather links to the President’s actions in two categories (admittedly subjectively sorted by me) Pros and Cons, where Pros means good decisions that resonate with his campaign promises and Cons the ones I don’t like and I think go against what he promised. Please feel free to leave links to news articles in the comments section for me to include. Thanks.

PROS

Obama orders halt to prosecutions in Guantanamo – NYTimes 01/21/09

Obama freezes salaries of White House employees making more than $100K per year and tightens lobbying rules. – NYTimes 01/21/09

Obama retakes the President’s Oath without using a Bible – The Buffalo News 01/21/09

Obama signs order to shut down secret prisons and Guantanamo within 1 year – NYTimes 01/22/09

Freedom of Information Act – Obama Memorandum directs government agencies to “adopt a presumption in favor of disclosure” and transparency.– Whitehouse.gov 01/22/09

Obama introduces “The American Reinvestment and Recovery Plan” – Whitehouse.gov 01/24/09

Executive Order “Ensuring Lawful Interrogation” a.k.a. anti-torture order – Whitehouse.gov 01/22/09

Obama reverses “Mexico City Policy” – Bush’s anti-abortion and anti family planning order through own executive order – Whitehouse.gov 01/23/09

Obama signs fair pay law – Whitehouse.gov – 01/29/09

CONS

Obama expands White House Faith Office – NYTimes 02/05/09

PS: The president has been raking up a bunch of pluses, no? Good going, I hope he keeps this up!

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Did a UFO show up at Obama’s inauguration?

Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on January 25, 2009

You have to be freaking retarded to think that this is a UFO.

Vote on Change.gov

Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on January 16, 2009

President-elect Barack Obama has set up the “Citizen’s briefing book” where you and I can vote up or down issues that are important to us. One such issue is the “Health Freedom is our first freedom” issue, which is basically an anti-science, anti-vaccine propaganda. I just voted it down, but my  negative 10 points are but a drop in the bucket. Please go over there and vote it down as much as you can. I can only pray that PZ Meyers will send the Pharynguloid hordes over there asap.

Barack Obama and aborition on the FOURTH trimester

Posted in Skepdude, Woo by Skepdude on November 12, 2008

Barack Obama was elected president despite the fact he supports abortion into the fourth trimester.

Can someone explain to this woman, what tri means? Wow! Here are some more words of wisdom from her.

Altogether, this means we are fooling ourselves if we think the United States is still a Christian nation. Its people just elected a barbarian as president, authorized the killing of both its youngest and sickest, rejected scientific fact that human life begins at conception, blocked parental intervention of abortions of young girls, and voted down the wording of an abortion ban they said only two years ago they would support.

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Find another genocide or catastrophe or war or famine or plague to match 1 billion people systematically killed in just a 20 year span, the number who have been murdered by abortion worldwide just in the past two decades according to the Alan Guttmacher Institute, research arm of Planned Parenthood.

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It is your responsibility, pastor and church leaders, to teach your people that abortion is abominable, and before that to teach chaste living. And before that, at the risk of making my Protestant friends flip, to teach that the contraceptive/sterilization mentality, which considers children bad, not blessings, is also a component of the sexual demise of our country.

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Obama was confident, categorically supporting unfettered abortion for all nine months of pregnancy and beyond.

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Only consistent church teaching that breaks through deadened consciences on the horror of abortion in conjunction with education on the godly confines of sexual behavior will do.

Yikes, I feel bad for anyone that comes in contact with this woman.

Slogging my way through the meltdown of the religious right…

Posted in Happy Jihads House of Pancakes by Skepdude on November 11, 2008

The aftereffects of the Obama win are echoing throughout the World Wide Weirdosphere. Let’s see, what do we have here…? Ah, J. Matt Barber, making an ass of himself as usual. It’s called: “Obama Promises Blood for the Bloodthirsty.”

You can almost smell the puddle of urine he was sitting while he wrote it.

The opening is pretty funny, if death by genital mutilation is your thing, or if you just like hyperbole:

It’s a day like any other. The kids are safe at school and you’re at work wishing you weren’t. All is as it should be. Then your cell phone rings. On the other end is your twelve-year-old daughter’s junior high school guidance counselor. Amid nervous hemming and hawing you detect that something’s horribly wrong. Then the words, “I’m sorry, she didn’t make it.”

At first it doesn’t register. Then it clicks and your soul is pierced. The room begins to spin and rapidly close in. You sink deep and grab for something. But nothing on this earth will hold you up.

Nightmare becomes reality as you learn that your little girl has just bled to death, alone and afraid, on a cold slab at the local Planned Parenthood clinic, the victim of a botched abortion. She was driven there, unbeknownst to you, by the very guidance counselor to whom you speak.

You didn’t even know she was pregnant. Like any child in her shoes, she was afraid to tell you, afraid of what you’d think, afraid you’d be ashamed. So she told someone else. Someone she trusted. Someone she thought cared for her. Someone who decidedly did not.

No one called. No one asked. No one said a word. They didn’t have to. They killed your baby and your baby’s baby in secret.

You feel powerless.

You should.

You are.

It was all legal, you see, and there’s not a thing you can do about it — nothing.

“… Sure, you could have talked to her ahead of time about the options that were available. If she had been on birth control, this would not have happened. If only your school district hadn’t been an abstinence-only district!

“For the rest of your natural life you will wonder why she didn’t trust you? Was it because of the years of indoctrination that left her unable to cope with the real world, or that convinced her that you were unprepared for the real world? Perhaps instead of scaring the shit out of her with your crazy-assed proselytizing, you might have talked to her. But now the little slut is in hell and there’s nothing you can do about it.

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY AT “HAPPY JIHAD’S HOUSE OF PANCAKES”

Skepdude endorses….

Posted in Skepdude by Skepdude on November 2, 2008

Barack Obama.

Thank goodness I am not a 501 c(3) as such I can express an opinion when it comes to politics. Barack Obama has potential. He is inspirational, he’s polished, and he talks the right talk. The question that remains to be seen is: Will he walk the walk? I sure hope he will. He has the chance to be great or a great delusion. I seriously hope that he’ll be the former. On Tuesday, November 4th 2008 I suggest you vote for Obama. Else you’ll be excommunicated from Skepfeeds!

Barack Obama: A pro-vaccine pharma shill who doesn’t care about autistic children?

Posted in Respectful Insolence by Skepdude on September 9, 2008

Well, here’s a rare bit of good news in the endless tedium that has become the U.S. election. It appears that Barack Obama has ticked off the antivaccine contingent. I know, I know, I said I would try to lay off this topic for a few days, but this is just too amusing. Apparently, he’s gone a long way towards redeeming himself for his previous gaffe when it came to vaccines and autism, and the antivaccine zealots over at Age of Autism are all in a tizzy over it:

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY AT “RESPECTFUL INSOLENCE”

Barack Obama Answers Science Debate 2008

Posted in The Intersection by Skepdude on September 2, 2008

SD08answers.png

In November, 2007, a small group of six citizens – two screenwriters, a physicist, a philosopher, and Chris and I – began working to restore science and innovation to America’s political dialogue in an initiative called ScienceDebate2008. Within weeks, more than 38,000 scientists, engineers, and other concerned Americans signed on, including nearly every major American science organization, dozens of Nobel laureates, elected officials and business leaders, and the presidents of over 100 major American universities. Signers submitted over 3,400 questions and we worked with the leading organizations involved to craft the top 14 questions the candidates should answer.

Barack Obama is the first to step up to our challenge and John McCain has said he will answer as well.

obamasenate.pngThe Senator from Illinois has responded comprehensively providing a glimpse into what an Obama-Biden administration would look like. Read his first answer below and all fourteen here.

1. Innovation. Science and technology have been responsible for half of the growth of the American economy since WWII. But several recent reports question America’s continued leadership in these vital areas. What policies will you support to ensure that America remains the world leader in innovation?

READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY AT “THE INTERSECTION”