Abandon All Fear

What nobody else seems to be saying…

RSS Clearout: June-July 2007

Posted by Lex Fear on September 2, 2007

Part 2 of my attempt to catch up with my feeds. Read on for blogs/news that I had an opinion on but no time to share. Some good ones for these months so take your time…

The IT Crowd

Jeff Atwood of Coding Horror asks Does Anyone Actualy Read Software EULAs? and goes on to list what could be some of the worst legal obligations you have ever signed (if you’re reading this, you’ve already signed at least a dozen and probably broken at least one of the terms already):

  1. Do not criticize this product publicly
  2. Using this product means you will be monitored
  3. Do not reverse-engineer this product
  4. Do not use this product with other vendors products
  5. By signing this contract, you also agree to every change in future versions of it. Oh yes, and EULAs are subject to change without notice
  6. We are not responsible if this product messes up your computer

– Jeff notes that these terms have not yet been tested in a court of law.

I find it interesting that in Steve Jobs’ explanation of why the iPhone has no 3G, he advocates the use of “walking along the street piggybacking on somebody’s home Wi-Fi network”. So basically, the iPhone is relying on us all to break the law? So why is Apple taking legal action against those who hack the iPhone?

Political Expediency

Tony Blair was finally ready to become a Catholic. One has to seriously consider the significance of a religion or an act of faith if it is something that can simply be put off till a convenient time.

Bill Sticker questions if the UK is going to the dogs… obviously he’s been ruined by the pleasant, rustic life of Canada.

The UK government decided that intelligent design and creationism are not science. Too bad it feels the need to bribe UK students to actually study the subject.

In a stroke of genius, a Southampton pub declared itself an embassy for the island of Redona to get around the smoking ban.

Kel has another featured video of the vile Anne Coulter, once again proving her worth and spitting out vitriol. Factually correct, but horribly, horribly wrong.

Charlie blogs about the human side of illegal immigration on his blog, Another Think.

David Duff has been, as usual, keeping tabs on jailhouselawyer and Rachel North.

Baudrillard’s Bastard asks if Britain should invade Zimbabwe.

A good question from The Times, why does the media focus so much on struggling homeowners when savers outnumber them 7 to 1?

Would we get a better return for our money invested in unelected quangoes if we punished failure or corruption like China? Seriously though folks, it’s not good. I pitty whoever is responsible for the toys.

Aah the Canadians. One thing they did not inherit from their British colonial roots was a sense of humour. I should know, I’m married to one. And when she reads this, I’m good as dead.

Conspiraloonery Central hosts a quick Google video demonstrating controlled explosions. Is fire really an adequate explanation for WTC7 collapse? How can anyone look at this and not question the official explanation of fire. All we need now is a video demonstrating the effects of building fires and I think we have a cover-up.

This is not surprising in the least. However, it shouldn’t discourage anyone, they are only creating more admin for themselves in the long run.

Seems like Harry Potter is not only reviled by the rhetorical right, but the left too (although for different reasons). Ironic, I thought.

Losing my Religion

Doug Smith offers some thoughts on pulpit plagiarism over at Sharper Iron. Whilst I understand the concerns of preaching something that someone else comes up with (presumably without credit), it does start to sound like a copyright lecture. What happened to Psalm 24:1?

Murch on his blog What A Wheenie, features another video of Richard Dawkins who ask why wouldn’t ‘they’ be prepared to kill for something if ‘you’ believe that ‘you’ are right and ‘they’ are wrong. So does that mean Dawkins is willing to kill for his anti-theist stance? Interesting comment on moderates paving the way for extremists, after asserting the invasion of Iraq was “stupid”. So how would Dawkins react to extremism in the Middle East, moderately ignore it pave the way or bring democracy attack it stupidly? What a weenie indeed. I’m glad to see Murch doesn’t let anti-theism get in the way of appreciation of Christians who advocate civil disobedience.. in other words, moderates- which is why I stick with his blog.

Zeitgeist – too bad I have neither the time or spirit to watch it. Thankfully someone else did the legwork for me, seems this movie will probably become part of future references to the current zeitgeist we are in, whilst Christianity will continue strong- mark my words.

Another one for emergents, the iBible. My favourite feature: “Words of Christ read by Jim Caviezel”

Mark Daniels of RedBlueChristian analyzes the effect of prayer on the world in light of current events. I was particularly struck by the account of the fall of the communist government of Romania in the 1980s. Huge coincidence?

Mark Van Steenwyk on his blog Jesus Manifesto posted an satirical, yet ironic article on a good use for megachurch buildings. I attend a church that actually ended up doing something similar to this (before my time). The problem was that this upset the middle class majority and most of them left (with their money) and the project fell through. I wonder if they’ll get the same welcome in Heaven. That’s an IF.

Is Tony Blair the anti-christ? Sounds wacko till you read Ken White’s theory on his blog, Jacob’s Pillar.

The Evangelical Outpost’s Top 100 Christian bloggers.

For a long time, I’ve seen a ministry that was held back by a leader who clung to the concept that the reason they didn’t do mission was because “people aren’t ready yet”. They were never ready, this went on for a number of years. Perhaps the ministry would grow if they simply asked those ‘not ready’ to leave?

What does it say for the deity you worship if it can be sacked and rehired like a contestant on the Apprentice?

A new Last Supper theory has crashed a website. I checked the websites linked in the piece but they all seem to resolve to the same domain. Still, I discovered a ton of new, hidden, far more explosive secrets from Da Vinci’s famous painting and posted them last year, if anyone’s interested.

Weird Science

Another evolutionary conundrum, The Times reveals what Christians (should) already have guessed…

If you can’t observer something empirically, then it’s a faith right?

The BBC headlined with “‘Skepticism’ over climate claims“, whereas The Torygraph went with the rather more accusatory “Public ‘in denial’ about climate change“. I guess all those globe-trotting rock stars and politicians will have to try a bit harder to convince us.

LWTC247 asks if Telsa’s free energy is a dream. Someone can correct me on this but if energy can be harnessed for less than is used to create it doesn’t this break the 3rd law of thermodynamics?

Here’s 10 amazing facts about Earth provided by Fogonazos. The best part is they even confound the scientists.

David Duff posted a critical analysis of the global warming debate and some very interesting historical (should that be hysterical?) headlines from the past.

If religion and science are supposed to be opposites, why would a church host a stained glass Einstein? Perhaps because real science either does not effect or compliments religion rather than conflicts.

Culture Vultures

BoingBoing linked to an online paper by Danah Boyd on the class divide between MySpace and Facebook. I briefly setup a MurderochSpace page, but only so I could comment on a friends MS blog and never touched it again. One thing that really irritates me is that MS users tend to treat aesthetics in the way that a dog treats a lampost. Half the time I can’t read a MS page because the colours are violently assaulting my eyes, the layout is extended to 1900x1400px or the posts and comments seem to be written in pidgeon English.

10 ‘real-life’ Superheroes (or people who see a need and do it). I honestly must admit, it inspires me to get fit and get more involved in social action. Will there ever be one in London?

Step aside Superman, BoingBoing features Stardust the Super Wizard, who surfaced around the same time as Superman during the WW2 era. I guess we’ve all got used to the idea of one man flying around in blue tights that we forget how ridiculous it can be.

There goes an asshole.

Still can’t afford a house? You could try sitting it out for the crash like I can’t stress enough, or Lord Matt hints at an alternative idea. Not a bad move since the zeitgeist seems to look favourably on eco-solutions.

A Wikipedia vandals, vandalisation backfires. A warning maybe, to all those politicians who have been editing their own profiles recently.

Here’s a great idea, teach kids that divorce is a natural step in the progress of happy families.

Possibly the best use for the iPhone, offered by Will It Blend?

I have no words for how dumb this is. However, it does prove an interesting point I made in a previous post: Terminators 3 – Ethics of the Machines. If a virtual world requires a whole new set of ethics and code of conduct, why do people resort to real world courts to solve their problems?


The RIAA is finally getting its comeuppance in the form of Tanya Andersen, who is suing them for using unlicenced investigators and violating her rights to privacy.

Creative Commons Canada released a legal guide for podcasters who are still living under archaic copyright laws.

An Australian ISP admitted to wiping every single audio and video file from it’s customers servers. Unfortunately this includes anything exclusively owned by the customer themselves. Australians should take note and avoid these guys.

Brian Hiatt and Evan Serpick explain how the record industry hung itself by it’s own noose when it sued Napster. Speaking of which, Prince did a nice job of screwing the record industry by releasing his album free with the Mail on Sunday.

Michael Moore is okay with people downloading Sicko.

Media Circus

While the media furor over missing Madeleine McCann continues, what’s happening for this poor girl, why isn’t she receiving equal media attention?


That’s it for July, it’s taken me about 3 days to sort through the links, August to follow soon, then I might go down to weeks instead.

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