How Lofty Are Dreams

moon over lake

© Ted Strutz

They enjoyed the view from the deck of the yacht just like the other families who were visiting the summer resort that week. Jim held his little granddaughter in his arms and they admired the moon together.

“Moon, Gampa! Moon!”

“That’s right, Danielle. It’s the Moon. Someday maybe you can live up there.”

“You’ll just confuse her, Dad.”

“Well maybe, son. But what about you, Landon?” He looked down at his eight-year-old grandson. “Would you like to live on the Moon someday?”

“I don’t know, Grandpa. People haven’t even walked on the Moon since 1972.”

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You’ll Never Get The Funding

microscope

Image: medicaldaily.com

“I tell you the proof is right here!”

To say that Marvin Graves was a maverick in the Hollingsworth University’s Department of Disorders and Cures was a gross understatement. He was always proposing research and spreading opinions that bordered on heresy. If his father hadn’t been the esteemed Grand Wizard Amadeus Graves, he would have long ago been expelled from the Order of Healers, if not put in prison.

“Oh, please!” Graves’ closest colleague, Mage First Class Linder Jilling, was actually quite fond of his quirky research partner, and had to admit, there was no finer mate to go pub crawling with than ol’ Marvy Graves. But while Jilling was inclined to tolerate Marvin’s eccentricities at times, today he had gone too far.

“I am not looking into that…that thing. I’m not even sure it’s legal to possess it.” Jilling wouldn’t even look at the device Graves called a microscope. He just waved his hand in its general direction.

“I tell you that I’ve found the cause of Childhood Breathing Inhibition and it’s not Draco’s Blood Magic as we’ve always been taught,” Graves insisted. “It’s not magic at all!”

Jilling abruptly turned and grabbed his friend, placing one hand over his mouth. “Hush, now! Do you want to get us both kicked out of the Department or locked up? Of course CBI is caused by Draco’s. All physical and mental maladies are caused by dark magic. Everybody knows that”

Graves was still and Jilling tentatively removed his hand in the hopes his friend would see the wisdom of remaining silent.

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Based on the Evidence

net nanny

One of the 13 local suspects arrested by the Washington State Patrol as part of a statewide child sex sting operation dubbed “Operation Net Nanny”
(Photo: KREM)

“Earth needs a virtual country: #Rationalia, with a one-line Constitution: All policy shall be based on the weight of evidence[.]”

Neil deGrasse Tyson on twitter

The sting was a part of a statewide effort from the Washington State Patrol and local law agencies around the state. Detectives posted an ad on craigslist titled “New to Spokane. Young fam fun.”

“We used a number of different personas in ways where we went out and talked to people who wanted to do bad things to kids,” said Sgt. Carlos Rodriguez of the Washington State Patrol.

In all, detectives said they got more than 1,000 replies to the ad. One of those that allegedly applied was Robert Dahms.

Court documents allege Dahms replied “I love young, I don’t care how young,” to what he allegedly thought was a mother offering her six and 11-year-old girls and her nearly 13-year-old son.

Bre Clark
“Child sex sting arrests ‘terrifying’ to Spokane parents”
KTVB.com

“Dr. Olsen, you are a board certified expert in the areas of sexual orientation and sexual identity, is that correct?”

Deputy Public Defender Sheila Grey Allen slowly walked toward the witness-box as she casually referred to her notes. Her manner was practiced and even to the casual eye, she gave the impression that she knew the answer to every question she asked, which, in fact, she did.

“Yes, that’s correct.” Benjamin Olsen, Ph.D in Psychology, was a professional expert witness who traveled all over the country at the request of various legal offices, in order to render his testimony, however, this case promised to be a landmark if the jury could be swayed to look at the evidence in a certain way. The talk show circuit would beckon Dr. Olsen, and lucrative book deals were most assuredly waiting in the wings.

“Have you had an opportunity to examine my client,” Allen subtly indicated the man with the receding hairline dressed in the yellow jailhouse jump suit seated at the defense table behind her, “Jesse Martine?”

“Yes I have,” Olsen responded calmly belying his internal excitement. “I issued my report last week.”

“Note that Dr. Olsen’s report was admitted into evidence yesterday afternoon,” Allen addressed the bench.

“So noted,” the bench replied.

“On what evidence do you base your report’s conclusion, Dr. Olson?”

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Why Living in Rationalia Would Not Be A Good Idea

brave new worldI won’t attempt eloquence at this. Many people, like National Review correspondents Jonah Goldberg or Kevin D. Williamson, have eloquently criticized famed astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson’s ill-conceived Tweet of last week: “Earth needs a virtual country: #Rationalia, with a one-line Constitution: All policy shall be based on the weight of evidence[.]” His Tweet was followed by a compilation of photos of prominent scientists such as Carolyn Porco and Richard Dawkins holding a sign stating, “Citizen of #Rationalia.”

-Jessica Xiao
“Neil deGrasse Tyson’s #Rationalia: A World Where Evidence is God? ”
The Humanist

Tyson has taken plenty of heat for this, and probably rightly so. One of the better commentaries was published at New Scientist and is called “A rational nation ruled by science would be a terrible idea”

Tyson is a very smart man, but this is not a smart idea. It is even, we might say, unreasonable and without sufficient evidence. Of course, imagining a society in which everyone behaves logically sounds appealing. But employing logic to consider the concept reveals that there could be no such thing.

There has always been a hope, especially as elites became less religious, that science would do more than simply provide a means for learning about the world around us. Science should also teach us how to live, pointing us towards the salvation that religion once promised. You can see this in any of the secular utopianisms of the 20th century, whether it’s the Third Reich, scientific Marxism, or the “modernisation thesis” of Western capitalism.

Yet each of these has since been summarily dismissed, and usually for the same two reasons.

Tyson is a rational person and from his perspective, what better basis is there for a society than rationality? He and Star Trek’s Mr. Spock would probably get along well, except…

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