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Member since: Mon Mar 27, 2017, 07:57 AM
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Do zombies have free will?

The literature for the philosophy of the mind is full of thought experiments involving zombies. These are not Walking Dead zombies, they are instead just like you and me with the one exception that they have no conscious experiences. In all other respects they are fully human.

Note that their unconscious or subconscious mind is fully functional and they are just as intelligent as we are.

There just isn’t a chattering monkeybrain in there “experiencing” existence.

They make choices. They go to Starbucks and order chai lattes.

Do they have free will?

President Dipshit.

What sort of person can’t bother to attend the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI because it was drizzling?

A fucking dipshit.

That’s our president.

After years of LePage, Maine went very blue Tuesday

Over the last four years, Republicans ruled Maine through control of its state Senate and governor, Paul LePage, who has described his style as “Trump before there was Trump.” Conflicts with the Democrat-controlled House and attorney general led to lawsuits flying nearly every month and, eventually, a government shutdown when there was no budget — all amid LePage’s stream of provocative name-calling that garnered national headlines.

But on Tuesday, in the greatest shift in partisan makeup of a state government in the United States this year, voters chose Democrat Janet Mills to replace a term-limited LePage and gave her party control of both chambers.


No blue wave?

Putin Wants God (or at Least the Church) on His Side

A contest over the future of Christianity in Ukraine goes to the heart of Moscow's ambitions.


On Aug. 27, one of the strangest targets yet of Russian hacking was revealed, when The Associated Press broke the news that Fancy Bear—the group infamously entangled in the 2016 U.S. presidential election hacks—had also targeted the heart of Eastern Orthodoxy, the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.

Bearded clerics might seem like an odd choice for a group that usually goes after liberal politicians or Russian dissidents. Unknown to most Westerners, though, a global struggle is playing out within the politics of Eastern Orthodoxy, which commands about 300 million believers worldwide. That struggle pits the Russian state and the Russian Orthodox Church against Constantinople and its apparent support for an independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church.

With its claim to 150 million members, the Russian Orthodox Church is by far the largest of the 14 mutually recognized Orthodox churches, and its leadership is highly conscious of the church’s imperial past and the fact that it is the only Orthodox church backed by considerable state power today.


Thinking back to my radical late 60s - 70s youth.

My wildest theories about the vile agenda of the ruling elites were way off base.

I could not imagine, back then, the capacity for evil, the callous indifference to the future of our country, the fate of all of humanity. Truly I was young and foolish.

48% of white evangelicals would support Kavanaugh

Poll: 48% of white evangelicals would support Kavanaugh even if the allegations against him were true

A Marist poll illustrates how white evangelical culture minimizes the seriousness of assault.


I’m surprised it isn’t higher.

Al Franken.

I liked Al. I was truly sorry he had to resign. But he had to resign. If our party had given him a pass we would have no moral authority in the Kavanaugh scandal.

We threw Al under the bus, but we did so for good reason.

DNA test tells man the bittersweet truth: His father was a Catholic priest

PAXTON — For decades, James C. Graham was tormented by a simple, but profound question: Why did his father seem to dislike him so much?

On Tuesday, the South Carolina man confirmed the bittersweet truth: The man who raised him wasn’t his father at all.

Graham’s extraordinary 25-year effort to find the truth about his father ended when a forensic anthropologist told him that his DNA matched samples taken from a deceased Catholic priest who grew up in Lowell and graduated from Boston College.


Yet more awful behavior from this awful institution.

Michigan Child's Death Puts Spotlight On Clash Between Medicine And Religion

The case of a Michigan couple charged in the death of their 10-month-old daughter is bringing to light a debate about withholding medical care because of religious beliefs.

Seth Welch and his wife, Tatiana Fusari, both 27, were charged with felony murder and first-degree child abuse after their daughter, Mary, died earlier this month from malnutrition and dehydration, an autopsy revealed. The parents said they didn't seek medical help for their daughter because of their religious beliefs, though they declined to define their religion.


Every state in the U.S. has laws protecting children from abuse and neglect, but in 34 states and the District of Columbia, there are religious exemptions that allow parents to forgo medical treatment for a child if it conflicts with their religious beliefs, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of data from the Department of Health and Human Services.

There are also religious exemptions to manslaughter laws in at least six states, Pew reported. However, in many states, including Michigan, these exceptions are not absolute.


But no such thing as religious privilege.

Why Mark Penn Is Sounding Trumpy

Because he was against Ken Starr, Penn’s logic is that he has a unique perspective on why Robert Mueller is harming the country, too. And as a Democrat bashing the Mueller investigation and making arguments that are useful to President Donald Trump, Penn has found a prominent new perch in the Washington ecosystem. Our interview was the first time he’s explained his Trumpian turn, which has earned him fresh enmity on the left.

Penn has now become a regular face on Fox News — CNN and MSNBC won’t book him — and a contributor to The Hill’s right-leaning editorial pages. There, he has repeatedly bashed the Mueller investigation as a “partisan, open-ended inquisition that, by its precedent, is a threat to all those who ever want to participate in a national campaign or an administration again” — followed up by more TV hits on Fox.

And despite the photos that decorate his office walls, he has willingly torched the Clintons, saying the Justice Department “broke their own rules” by ending an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, and noting that “Clinton Foundation operatives” urged the FBI to investigate Trump.


Penn has gone Full Dershowitz.
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