RationalWiki:What is going on in the world?/June 2010

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June 2010[edit]

2Smoking is bad for Christopher Hitchens too, sadly.
-3Mexican singer: "I'm not dead!" Oops, you are now. Sorry!
5You can't fool statistics. Daily Kos sues its polling firm, Research 2000, after catching R2K just making shit up.
10But Grandma, good Christians don't vandalize private property that's something only dirty atheists do.
11American corporations in 2009 were discriminated against, just like African-American school children in 1954.
7Female banker fired for being 'too sexy and distracting' files official human rights complaint.
19How civilized.
18Scientology and other cults in Australia are asked to show their public benefit if they want to maintain their tax-exempt status.
5 Senator Robert Byrd is in the hospital due to dehydration and heat exhaustion, and is seriously ill. UPDATE: Senator Byrd has passed.
25The Catholic Church is shocked to discover that it is not above the law. Meanwhile in Kentucky ...
7You always knew Fox News was creepy, but necrophilia?
12ASCAP solicits funds from members to fight "copyleft"-promoting organizations. Wonder what happens when Wikimedia notices.
14More from the you-couldn't-make-this-up department: Dutch police use decoy Jews to beat anti-semitism.
18A Missouri farmer has posted a billboard on his land asking "Are you a producer or a parasite?" Under the question he claims that Democrats are the party of parasites. Naturally, he doesn't think that the $1.1 million dollars in farm subsidies that he has taken from the federal government since 1995 makes him a parasite.
11Australia gets its first female prime minister.
24The Texas GOP goes for a platform which we definitely couldn't have predicted (full PDF).
6The UK budget is announced to a resounding "meh" from all most the most ardent political nerds.
13Carbon dating has been used to measure known dates to test Egyptian chronology, and surprise surprise, it's actually accurate.
23Sarah Palin proposes a solution to the Gulf oil disaster. Brace yourself - it's a doozy. Update - PZ reports that Robert Adley has the same idea
8Self-promotion on Twitter goes in a creepy new direction, as Utah's AG announces that he's given the go ahead for Ronnie Gardner's execution online.
9After a grovelling Rep. Joe Barton apologizes to BP for Obama's "shakedown" (see below), Rep. John Boehner says taxpayers should share the tab.
13More wacky weather - just in time for the World Cup, South Africa suffers from its coldest June ever. Brrr!
9Conservative family values, UK-style: Caroline Nokes, Cameron's Christian side-kick has been doing the naughty with a toy-boy for the last four years.
9Alberta: land of oil, libertarian gun-nuts and ... the largest cache of dinosaur bones ever uncovered!
22In Limbaugh Land, all the kids who will go hungry this summer without school lunches are walking right by their overstocking fridges and cupboards overflowing with Twinkies!
899 Red balloons go by...
12BP I'm sorry that the government is pushing you around and all that money you gave me has nothing to do with my feelings. GOP leadership: No you're not!
4I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords.
4What's the problem with "publish or perish"? An avalanche of mediocre scientific research that no-one reads or builds upon. Update: Or not: "Not cited" should not be confused with "not read".
17100 years after the physics were confirmed and 50 years after its first mention in science fiction, the first true solar sail for propulsion is deployed for testing in orbit.
2The situation at Arlington Cemetery goes from bad to worse
9Eleven-year-old-boy speaks truth to power, tells the Canucks what's what.
8Glorious Democratic People's Republic of Korea soccer has fans from across the world and not Chinese people paid to root for them.
12Problem: Police officers are getting caught on tape lying and using excessive force with suspects. Solution: Use 40 year old wiretapping laws to arrest citizens who have the nerve to record police misconduct.
12Hoping to one-up the "Zeigen Sie mir Ihre Papiere" crowd in Arizona, a GOP candidate from New Mexico talks about one "interesting" solution to illegal immigration -- LAND MINES!
18American goes to Pakistan, plans to kill bin Laden. With a freakin' sword.
6Glenn Beck writes his Atlas Shrugged Turner Diaries
1562 foot-tall statue of Jesus, nicknamed Touchdown Jesus, incinerated by bolt of lightning. Zeus: 1, Jesus: 0.
6How much of a diehard libertarian is Rand Paul? Well, it seems that he's not only against "interference" from the government, he's also against "interference" from private professional organizations. E.g., he isn't a board-certified ophthalmologist (as he has claimed) because he thinks the certification process is "unfair." Unless, of course, you count his certification from the rival board that he helped create. You know, the unsanctioned board whose recertification process is less rigorous bureaucratic.
4Look at what the US has "found" since the invasion of Afghanistan. Conspiracy theorists will begin thinking "So that's the reason for the invasion of Afghanistan" in 5...4...3...2...
9Cow seduces Indonesian man "She called my name and seduced me, so I had sex with her," he said. The bovine temptress was drowned to rid village of bad luck, and the man underwent "ritual cleansing".
20New York Post not entirely clear on the concept.
12FIFA claims the World Cup is "solid gold." Science says "bollocks it is."
6Pyrophosphite might have been early life's energy repository.
10Homeopathy is harmless? That's why a homeopath is in the dock after telling a cancer patient to forego all other treatment, and Western Australia is looking at regulating it.
16Georgia's creationist natural history museum, The Gallery of Creation, is liquidating its entire astounding collection of curiosities in an auction.
13"Pop" science: shedding new light on bursting bubbles with high speed cameras. As reported in Nature.
8Victory for the righties who have sought to eliminate the Estate Tax "Death Tax"! A Texan who recently died after amassing a fortune estimated at $9 billion has become the first American billionaire since the tax was enacted in 1916 to pass his entire fortune to his heirs completely tax-free. (This one-year tax amnesty is the last "quirk" in the tax package that Dubya pushed through Congress all the way back in 2001. Because, you know, his tax policies have made us so prosperous today.)
7UN Security Council votes to continue sanctions against Iran.
9California Republicans are nervous, Orly Taitz might actually win the primary for California Secretary of State. Update: The voters of Califonia showed at least some good sense. Though, 365,684 people still voted for her!
9BP onsite supervisors ordered shortcuts the day of the rig explosion. And there was a history of such activities
18Hydrogen fueled Methane monsters live on Titan, scientists say.
14How do we know that the leadership of the Catholic church still doesn't understand the problems regarding the priest child sexual abuse scandal? Well, for starters, the Burlington, Vermont diocese put this photo on the cover of the current issue of its monthly magazine.
17What's going to hack the fundies off more? The fact that children of Lesbian couples do just as well, if not better, than their contemporaries, or that Fox covered the news without slagging off the study?
7What's $1,000,000 to Elton John? Well, its enough to get him to play at Rush Limbaugh's fourth wedding. (See Mike Edwards of Jesus Jones on the murky world of the corporate gig circuit.)
8Huzzah! Finally some sound reason in the UK with regards to GM crops. Oh and don't forget to facepalm at the comment section.
10SpaceX' Falcon 9 launches successfully a dummy Dragon capsule to orbit (video), marking another step towards private access to space and giving Australians a mysterious spiral to ponder.
10The simple solution is to make the nonwhite kids...white!. In Prescott, Arizona of all places (groan.) Where is Billy Jack when we need him?
4Is that Internet idiot really Aspergic or just a fuckwit? A pee test for autism!
9"Hey, Baracky, watch me pull the end of your Presidency out of my asshat!" "But that trick never works!" "This time for sure!" "Rrrrrrrroooooaaaaaaarrrrrrr!" "Looks like I'm gonna need another crackpot legal strategy." Birthers get smacked down... again.
13 "Wicked Nun vanquished. Catholic church excommunicates Nun that authorized a lifesaving abortion" How Do You Solve a Problem Like Margret McBride
8Success for abstinence-only sex education advocates! The rhythm method is now being used by an increasing number of American teens.
8Rand Paul may really be speaking to his base. According to a recent University of Washington poll finds that three out of four Teabaggers agree with the following statement: "While equal opportunity for blacks and minorities to succeed is important, it's not really the government's job to guarantee it." Furthermore, more than half believe that "compared to the size of their group, lesbians and gays have too much political power."
10Former Head of GOP in Florida is arrested, has busted lip for some reason - resisting arrest?.
8In Iran improperly veiled women are a ""security issue."
10Conserva-schism! Some prominent evangelical Christians support comprehensive immigration reform, including a "path to citizenship"; others conservatives, including Mama Schlafly, disagree.
19Saudi woman beats up thought cop, risks lashing. (Although the burka might mean they'll have trouble getting a positive ID...)
8Monsignor Charles Scicluna warns paedophile priests that they will be punished utterly and horifically ... in his imagination. Yep, can't see that failing to stop the child raping dead in its tracks.
16Is Betelgeuse about to blow up? Let's watch the science sites over the next few days ... Update: Er, no. (everybody say "awww" Cry.gif)