religion

Anything But The Truth

Notwithstanding how distasteful it is, they are remarkably quick to get their bullsh*t in when tragedies happen.

Some of these are elected representatives, some of them are loons. Unfortunately however, they are all people who in one way or another have an audience.

These are the people that watch The Handmaid’s Tale and think “that’s a good idea”.

1

2.jpg

 

3.jpg

4.jpg

5.jpg

6.jpg

7.jpg

8.jpg

 

 

 

Discrimination in Action

TV news makes many sins of omission and other propaganda techniques are in there.

However, you often find much more propaganda, lifestyle propaganda, in other programs on TV.

This lifestyle propaganda is all about showing people what those that control the TV output believe to be acceptable behaviour.

Here we have a truly stunning example, with 4 adults ganging up to bully a 16 year old girl, and her father, who is watching, seems to be happy about it.

So Wanda Died Tonight…

Wanda died tonight. I’m devastated about it and I’ll explain some of the reasons, and not all of them are related to the death, but before we get started, Wanda wasn’t a person, she was a cat.

Well, she was barely a cat – only 8 months old.

The loss of a beloved pet isn’t the direction this article is going to take, so you shouldn’t be expecting that sort of thing, but I’d also like to point out early on in this that if you are one of those people that is saying “jesus, why are you caring about animals when people are suffering?” then you should count yourself lucky you’re not in the same room as me right now. Don’t you have the mental capacity to care about both?

The fact that she died shortly after my fiancée and I had been at a church wedding will become more important as the article goes.

You see, as an atheist Scot who did 13 years of Catholic school in the west of Scotland, and who was brought up in a Scotland where I could steadily see the erosion, though importantly not the eradication, of many of the old and very real prejudices against catholics – (that’d be half my family then), I’m fairly conflicted on a number of issues surrounding catholic schooling, religion and bigotry in Scotland.

So where does the cat come in?

IMG_20141015_171544Well, first I’ll tell the story of poor Wanda, and then I’ll get back to that.

Wanda arrived at our house with her brother and sister as strays even though they weren’t in fact strays. The next door neighbour hasn’t sterilised her cat and lets her reproduce almost in continuation. Apart from the damage this does to the cat herself, eventually, as is the natural thing for a cat, she has to tell the old litter to go away before the next one comes along, and as the neighbour doesn’t leave out enough food for all these cats, the mother (let’s call her Bianca) tends to bring them over here.

This could create a problem because we also have 3 dogs, but we have a system that works.

Because we live in the country, we feel that having a few cats running around isn’t necessarly the worst thing and Bianca brings her kittens here because we leave food out for the neighbourhood cats. Our dogs are trained to leave the 2 house cats we have alone and always do so. The new cats that tend to come and go in the countryside can make them nervous but the garden has a fence and the dogs can’t go roaming. That said, like any dogs, they don’t like it when the other cats jump into the garden. Therefore, to avoid possible problems we leave cat food OUTSIDE at a reasonable distance from the garden so they don’t need to come in. This system works. They don’t come in and everyone is happy.

FullSizeRenderSo Wanda was an outside cat (kitten) and 2 weeks ago she must have jumped on something (not the fence) because she got the most horrible cut. The vet said there was no way it was a bite, it was a clean cut on something sharp.

As I said, she wasn’t one of our cats officially, just an outside one. Nevertheless we took her off to the vet, because the neighbour couldn’t give a shit, and got her operated and stitched up and she recovered. The wound was healing fine but then, maybe because she was still a bit weak after the op, she got a bad form of gastroenteritis which has been killing a lot of unvaccinated cats.

Again, she was taken to the vet and given antibiotics and cortisone. She hadn’t been eating or drinking either so spent 4 days on a drip.

Sometimes it looked like she was getting better, sometimes it didn’t. We spent (my fiancée much more than me) days sitting with her in the Vet’s place. Holding the paw, cleaning the diarhorrea and the vomit off her, changing the antiseptic sheets under her, pulling the paw out from under her a bit so the drip could actually work, and more.

But apparently when we were at the wedding today, and the night before, she had been vomiting black stuff, which was probably ingested blood, and had deteriorated significantly. These were effects of the virus, not the operation.

We hadn’t actually planned to go to the wedding reception anyway, she was going to the vet and I was supposed to go back home and feed the dogs and cats we have here and monitor them for any signs of trouble with this virus. However, before I’d got back she phoned me and said Wanda was dying so I went down to say goodbye in the first instance, and to try and give comfort to my fiancée in the second.

When I got there my good lady was very upset (so was I) and I said and did what I could, we talked about it and then I spoke to the Vet’s assistant who said she could die within the hour or it could be two days. The vet arrived and also said there was basically nothing to be done because the virus had caused all sorts of internal haemorrhagging, so we had a decision to make, which was either to leave her suffering or put her down, shortly before the inevitable arrived.

We put her down and we didn’t hide. We both watched the anaesthetic to remove the pain going in and tried to caress her the whole time. And I watched the second injection. It was quick. Poor thing.

We had given her a house of sorts in the garage, we had given her food and we had tried our best to get her the treatment she needed to survive (should be noted that the vet refused to take any money for the 4 days of drip and subsequent treatment) and I hope we made the 6 out of her short 8 months that she spent with us, winding in and out of our legs and generally searching for affection, as good as possible.

When we got home the two things that had happened during the day began to mesh together.

I’m happy for the new wife and husband and I hope it goes well for them, but here is where the catholic upbringing I mentioned at the start comes in…

In the church my other half (who was also brought up catholic) and I had been making fun of the wayward and overlong discourse of a probably slightly drunk priest and his chat of Adam’s rib (mostly me on this count).

The thought has been in my head since that maybe Wanda’s death was my fault for the lack of faith, for the blasphemy and so on.

Why should that thought be there? I know it’s nonsense – we gave her food, we gave her a comfortable and clean place to sleep, we paid her doctor’s bills, we played with her. We couldn’t have given more. But why do I have the “it’s my fault for not having faith” thought in my head. It’s like I blasphemed and this was the punishment.

It’s insane but it isn’t the first time I’ve had this reaction to a similar event.

Nowadays I can rationally put that thought in the bin as quickly as it arrives, but the fact that it still arrives, and that must have been the work of someone, is the only thing that has angered me today. Everything else apart from the happily married couple has been quite depressing.

No Smoke Without Hellfire

Best Scare Story EverPossibly the best unionist scare story of all time.

The original story was from June 2012.

I use the word “unionist” deliberately as I don’t think the official Better Together campaign have gone quite this far yet.

However, they didn’t deny it – maybe they think there is no smoke without hellfire, however, it is time they denounced these extremists.

As it is Saturday night though, I think a nice musical rejoinder could be a good response for the Yes campaign to those startling biblical revelations…

 

 

Saturday Matinee 20 – Judgement Day: Intelligent Design On Trial

This documentary starts with a rather simplistic tone but it improves as it goes on.

The trial and surrounding events are the interesting parts, and the documentary doesn’t disappoint there.

A few years back in the United States, certain groups were trying to push the “teach the controversy” line with regards to Evolution Vs Intelligent Design, despite the fact that there is no controversy, and Intelligent Design is wrong.

The attempt to shoehorn creationism into the schools via intelligent design failed, but not before the whole thing had gone to court.

It’s a very interesting documentary, and should show you what to expect the next time all this comes up again…

Wibble Wibble Wibble

The Free Presbyterians are worried about their position as one of the maddest groups of people in the country.

Although the Scotsman (sic) phrased in a rather sensational way, it is clear to see that some wingnuttery is still going on.

AN INDEPENDENT Scotland would weaken the position of the Christian Church and be a ‘provocation of God’, according to the Free Presbyterians.

Rev Allan MacColl, spokesman for the Scottish Free Presbyterians, known as the ‘Wee Frees’ said religion and morality were in a “terrible” state across Britain.

He added: “But present constitutional arrangements guarantee Christian religion in its position at the heart of the nation, and defends the position of the church and the Bible clearly teaches that.

“It is the duty of all nations to recognise the position of Christ church and any move away from that would not only be dangerous for the church, it is dangerous for the people.”

Speaking of the Independence referendum, the Rev MacColl added: “We are very uneasy about any move to secularise, or even change the existing arrangements.”

He said the church could not tell people how to vote in a referendum on independence, but could warn them

He added that independence would weaken the position of the Christian Church ‘at the heart of the nation’.

Rev McColl also said the Treaty of Union secured the Protestant religion and Presbyterian church and any change “would be a provocation of God”.

Although to me arguing about what angers god is akin to arguing about what colour fairies are, I suppose it is interesting that the defenders of the faith (just about all of them) are lining up to also be defenders of the Union.

What does that say about institutions in the (hopefully) soon-to-be extinct UK?

No Real Case for Listening to the Archbishop of Canterbury

The Archbishop of Canterbury has been quoted as saying there is ‘no real case for Scottish Independence’. You can imagine how this immediately made me change my views on the subject.

He was speaking to the Church of Scotland, those other well-known modernist reformists.

I don’t want to get into the argument about the relevance of the church(es) in the modern world. I’d rather look at what may be some of his real-world reasons for saying some of this.

And of course it doesn’t come as a surprise that he should have an opinion of this sort. His position is an anachronism of the British State (or more specifically English state) – all that stuff with the lovely King Henry if you remember (I know they trace their history to much earlier than that).

I’m not saying he isn’t entitled to his opinion, merely that it should be clear on which side his loaves and fishes are buttered.

The quote above was in the title of the article in the Scotsman but not in the body of it. What he went on to say was…

“As it is, there is an increasing amount of devolved power in both Scotland and Wales, which I think has been broadly a healthy development. Whether it would help us to be separate states I really don’t know. I’ve still to be persuaded about that.”

“If you want devolved parliaments to have some effective control over let’s say educational and health policy I think you’re bound to have some higher level of fiscal independence built into that – how you raise money and how you spend it. There is a case for that.”

That last bit is in bold because you might want to drop the words “Arms Investment and the Church of England” in at that point if you wanted to be ungodly. That however is old news and it appears the C of E took its money out of some arms companies a few years ago, but not before they had received a god-fearing rogering from Mark Thomas on the issue.

Even now though, the policy of the C of E on this leaves a little room for military manoeuvres. This is from the C o f E’s stated policy on the matter...

So the Church does not invest at all in the defence industry?

Investment is allowed in companies that have exposure to the supply or manufacture of non-offensive military equipment where this does not constitute the main business.

What does the Church mean by non-offensive equipment?

By this we mean suppliers of avionics, radar, sonar, instrumentation, components, military IT and software, as well as refit and commissioning of military systems.

So what we have here is that the leader of the official state church, whose church was and may still be invested in some of the skullduggery of the official state, comes out and says something to defend the official state.

As it is Towel Day today I think Douglas Adams should have the last word…

If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family anatidae on our hands.

Who Watches the Watchers?

A story like this always gives me a chuckle…

The Russian Orthodox Church has apologised for showing a photo of its leader Patriarch Kirill that was doctored to airbrush out a luxury watch he was wearing.

The gold Breguet watch is estimated to be worth more than $30,000 (£19,000) and was spotted by Russian bloggers.

The watch’s reflection could be seen in the 2009 photo on the church’s website.

The Patriarchate said the manipulation would be investigated and “the guilty ones will be punished severely”.

In a statement the Patriarch’s press service said “we reject on principle any use of photo editing software to alter the appearance of images.”

So, they reject on principle the use of photo editing software. Going by the evidence of watches that cost 19 grand however, they also, like many other christian churches, appear to reject some of the things written in that book that they are always on about…

“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’ They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’ He will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least among you, you did not do for me.'”

-Matthew 25:41-45
“Jesus answered, ‘If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.'”

-Matthew 19:21