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crypto and public policy

Archive for the 'General' Category

Benlog is moving….

Posted: Saturday, February 11th, 2006 @ 2:41 pm in General | Comments Off on Benlog is moving….

Benlog is moving to its now-permanent URL: More details there….

Sick of Fundamentalism

Posted: Friday, December 2nd, 2005 @ 7:12 pm in General | Comments Off on Sick of Fundamentalism

A professor who was going to teach a course debunking the “sicence” of Creationism (aka Intelligent Design) has cancelled his plans. No doubt, his words (“fundies”) were poorly chosen. But how does the University President get away with such strong condemnation of this professor’s words, without any condemnation of the repeated insanity preached by Fundamentalists? […]

Voting: Accountability and Secrecy

Posted: Tuesday, November 22nd, 2005 @ 2:36 pm in General | 1 Comment »

Just a quick thought I just had about voting, inspired by a recent brainstorm within our research group. In an election, your ballot remains secret, so that you cannot be unduly influenced by others. When elected representatives vote on laws, however, their voting record is supposed to be public (let’s discount those sleazy hand votes […]

France: the Wingnut Litmus Test Continues

Posted: Friday, November 18th, 2005 @ 8:52 pm in General | Comments Off on France: the Wingnut Litmus Test Continues

A couple of days ago, Mitt Romney, our Massachusetts Governor, joined the Bash-France club. Meanwhile, the right-wing movement RightMarch has just released a song called “Bush Was Right,” whose lyrics include (PDF), out of nowhere, the line “France was wrong.” My Litmus Test continues. If you bash France for no particular reason, as a diversion, […]

The Paris Riots – Of Root Causes and Public Order

Posted: Saturday, November 5th, 2005 @ 3:40 pm in General | Comments Off on The Paris Riots – Of Root Causes and Public Order

“But if you look at the streets it wasn’t about Rodney King, It’s bout this fucked up situation and these fucked up police. It’s about coming up and staying on top and screamin’ 187 on a mother fuckin’ cop.” — Lyrics from “April 26, 1992”, by Sublime A friend gently poked me yesterday to write […]

Talk About Denial

Posted: Friday, November 4th, 2005 @ 8:13 am in General | Comments Off on Talk About Denial

Right about now, CNN’s US homepage features the riots in Paris. Meanwhile, Le Monde’s front page features the secret CIA prisons in eastern Europe. I guess we’re all the same: denial, denial, denial, focus on someone else’s issues.

It’s the coverup… duh.

Posted: Friday, October 28th, 2005 @ 4:19 pm in General | Comments Off on It’s the coverup… duh.

So Libby is indicted, and the politicians and pundits are already saying “it’s never the original scandal, it’s the coverup” that gets politicians in trouble. That may well be true, but it misses something truly fundamental about the flow of information from politicians to the public. It assumes that the public learns fairly rapidly about […]

On Evolution and the Moral Compass

Posted: Thursday, October 20th, 2005 @ 10:14 am in General | Comments Off on On Evolution and the Moral Compass

“If you are nothing but an accident of nature, then nothing you do is dependent on objective truth,” he says. “You can set your own rules. There is no life after death. There are no set moral codes. If you go to bed, and if you die its OK, you’re just another piece of matter […]

“The French Are The Enemy!”

Posted: Wednesday, October 19th, 2005 @ 2:01 am in General | Comments Off on “The French Are The Enemy!”

What perfect timing. A few days ago, I claimed that rabid, irrational, anti-French ranting is a good litmus test of crazy extreme right-wingers. Tonight on the Daily Show, Bill O’Reilly (yes, Bill O’Reilly on the Daily Show) says “The French! How can you like the French! They’re the enemy!” And later “What are you, from […]

Just Give.

Posted: Thursday, September 1st, 2005 @ 6:11 pm in General | Comments Off on Just Give.

In a few weeks, we can discuss Bush’s responsibility, global warming, whether it’s a good idea to live in New Orleans, and all sorts of other long-term issues that will be important to consider. But for now, give money to help the recovery effort. That’s all.