Discussion


BOOK CLUB
May 1, 2019 · 50 

We have created this thread to provide a dedicated space for the discussion of books. Pretty much any kind of book – it doesn’t have to be about atheism or religion or science or politics. It doesn’t even have to be non-fiction. All we ask is that, whatever the topic or genre, the books are …

OPEN DISCUSSION MAY 2019
May 1, 2019 · 72 

This thread has been created for discussion on themes relevant to Reason and Science for which there are not currently any dedicated threads. Please note it is NOT for general chat, and that our Comment Policy applies as usual. There is a link to this at the foot of the page. If you would like …

Originals


Can the Electoral College system be reformed?
Feb 9, 2018 · 304 

by Richard Dawkins Donald Trump was surely right when he said, in 2012, “The electoral college is a disaster for a democracy . . . A total sham and a travesty”. And he confirmed his sensible view on November 13th, 2016 (after winning the election by the Electoral College system, but losing the popular vote) …

News


Scientists Created Bacteria With a Synthetic Genome. Is This Artificial Life?
May 22, 2019

By Carl Zimmer Scientists have created a living organism whose DNA is entirely human-made — perhaps a new form of life, experts said, and a milestone in the field of synthetic biology. Researchers at the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Britain reported on Wednesday that they had rewritten the DNA of the bacteria …

Why the Guardian is changing the language it uses about the environment
May 22, 2019

By Damian Carrington The Guardian has updated its style guide to introduce terms that more accurately describe the environmental crises facing the world. Instead of “climate change” the preferred terms are “climate emergency, crisis or breakdown” and “global heating” is favoured over “global warming”, although the original terms are not banned. “We want to ensure that we …

This may be the worst thing to come from Trump’s presidency
May 22, 2019

By David Gergen and James Piltch In the midst of World War II, Franklin Roosevelt had the foresight to see that advancements in American science were critical to Allied victories in World War II. Searching for day-to-day guidance, he named Vannevar Bush, an engineer with a joint Ph.D from MIT and Harvard, as the director …

Exclusive: Watchdog group sues Walmart for selling “nonsense” homeopathic remedies
May 22, 2019

By Rina Raphael Walmart is being sued for selling questionable alternative remedies. The Center for Inquiry (CFI), a nonprofit dedicated to ensuring that “pseudoscience is prevented from harming society,” filed a complaint Monday on behalf of residents in Washington, D.C., against the giant retailer. The organization claims the superstore deliberately “creates a false and misleading …

Why So Many Sharks Have Bird Feathers in Their Bellies
May 21, 2019

By Ed Young Marcus Drymon wasn’t expecting a baby shark to barf up a ball of feathers onto his boat. The shark’s presence wasn’t the weird bit: Drymon and his team of fisheries ecologists regularly assess fish populations along the coasts of Mississippi and Alabama, and every year, they’ll catch, weigh, tag, and release thousands of …

Scientists Think They Know How Pluto’s Hidden Ocean Stays Liquid
May 21, 2019

By Ryan F. Mandelbaum Recent results suggest that Pluto has a liquid water ocean buried beneath its icy shell. But how could such a thing be possible at the frigid outer edges of the solar system? Scientists from Japan and the United States might have an answer. In a paper published Monday in Nature Geoscience, these researchers …

Social


Originals


Can the Electoral College system be reformed?
Feb 9, 2018 · 304 

by Richard Dawkins Donald Trump was surely right when he said, in 2012, “The electoral college is a disaster for a democracy . . . A total sham and a travesty”. And he confirmed his sensible view on November 13th, 2016 (after winning the election by the Electoral College system, but losing the popular vote) …

An exchange on abortion
Nov 1, 2017 · 239 

Richard Dawkins 24 Oct 2017   I had tweeted an invitation to attend lectures in various parts of Britain by Saba Douglas-Hamilton, who grew up among wild African elephants while her father, Iain Douglas-Hamilton was conducting his pioneering studies of their ecology and behaviour, and he and his wife Oria were fighting the poachers. Saba’s …

News


Scientists Created Bacteria With a Synthetic Genome. Is This Artificial Life?
May 22, 2019

By Carl Zimmer Scientists have created a living organism whose DNA is entirely human-made — perhaps a new form of life, experts said, and a milestone in the field of synthetic biology. Researchers at the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Britain reported on Wednesday that they had rewritten the DNA of the bacteria …

Why the Guardian is changing the language it uses about the environment
May 22, 2019

By Damian Carrington The Guardian has updated its style guide to introduce terms that more accurately describe the environmental crises facing the world. Instead of “climate change” the preferred terms are “climate emergency, crisis or breakdown” and “global heating” is favoured over “global warming”, although the original terms are not banned. “We want to ensure that we …

This may be the worst thing to come from Trump’s presidency
May 22, 2019

By David Gergen and James Piltch In the midst of World War II, Franklin Roosevelt had the foresight to see that advancements in American science were critical to Allied victories in World War II. Searching for day-to-day guidance, he named Vannevar Bush, an engineer with a joint Ph.D from MIT and Harvard, as the director …

Exclusive: Watchdog group sues Walmart for selling “nonsense” homeopathic remedies
May 22, 2019

By Rina Raphael Walmart is being sued for selling questionable alternative remedies. The Center for Inquiry (CFI), a nonprofit dedicated to ensuring that “pseudoscience is prevented from harming society,” filed a complaint Monday on behalf of residents in Washington, D.C., against the giant retailer. The organization claims the superstore deliberately “creates a false and misleading …

Why So Many Sharks Have Bird Feathers in Their Bellies
May 21, 2019

By Ed Young Marcus Drymon wasn’t expecting a baby shark to barf up a ball of feathers onto his boat. The shark’s presence wasn’t the weird bit: Drymon and his team of fisheries ecologists regularly assess fish populations along the coasts of Mississippi and Alabama, and every year, they’ll catch, weigh, tag, and release thousands of …

Scientists Think They Know How Pluto’s Hidden Ocean Stays Liquid
May 21, 2019

By Ryan F. Mandelbaum Recent results suggest that Pluto has a liquid water ocean buried beneath its icy shell. But how could such a thing be possible at the frigid outer edges of the solar system? Scientists from Japan and the United States might have an answer. In a paper published Monday in Nature Geoscience, these researchers …

Discussion


BOOK CLUB
May 1, 2019 · 50 

We have created this thread to provide a dedicated space for the discussion of books. Pretty much any kind of book – it doesn’t have to be about atheism or religion or science or politics. It doesn’t even have to be non-fiction. All we ask is that, whatever the topic or genre, the books are …

Social