Everyday Skeptic: Our Mission Orders Have Been Flawed

Convincing our fellows using reason and evidence is a bridge too far.   A few recent encounters out on the wide world of the internet, as well as social media, have enlightened me to a great failing in my personal perspective and my assumptions when dealing with others. That failing, that misjudgment, is in believing that other people value reason, demand evidence of claims, and have a desire to discover the truth. That failing was revealed through hateful and emotional reactions that people had to simple claims that went counter to their own stated position. The immediate reaction to reasonable…

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American Doublethink

Democracy is the best political system. I’m glad the courts threw out that voter initiative.   Discrimination is wrong. We need hiring and admissions quotas to correct past injustices.   I care about the poor. Let’s raise cigarette, sales, and gas taxes.   I believe in charity. We need to collect more tax money for assistance programs.   The war is evil, but I support our troops.   A volunteer army victimizes the poor. We should conscript the troops.   I would never assault someone just because they are doing something I don’t care for. I’ll call the police instead.…

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Sex and Society part 2: Monogamy!

Previous A man’s commitment to reproduction is short and pleasurable; a woman’s is long and arduous.   From this simple truth arises most of our social conventions, societal norms, and expectations when it comes to the sexes interacting with one another. In the absence of the state (whose interference will be discussed in a future installment), it becomes imperative that women not only choose fit partners, but require those partners to contribute resources and support offspring. The problem is that the fun, fulfilling part of male reproduction happens first while all the work that arises from it happens afterwards. There…

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Sex and Society, part 1: Guard Your Eggs!

The Bright Children will return tomorrow. In the mean, enjoy the introduction to a weekly series exploring how sex has created society! What it takes for a male human to reproduce: A relatively fun few minutes.   What it takes for a female human to reproduce: A few minutes which might not be fun at all Six weeks to nine months of nausea An ever expanding midsection causing back pain, leg pain, and general discomfort Hours to days worth of painful labor culminating in the forceful expulsion of a tiny human from an extremely sensitive area. One to two years…

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Deep Time: Prophet of the God Seed, Author’s Reflection

Another work of size is finished, and so it is time once again to reflect on the work – a service I do for myself as well as for any readers that might be writers themselves. It helps to think critically about a work immediately following a release when it comes to making future plans and improving the craft. Since I have the ability to edit and revise work post-hoc, such a reflection can also serve as the first baseline for revisions when and if the work changes formats (for example, if I publish a work using traditional means in…

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Muramasa: Blood Drinker, an Author’s Reflection

At long last, the writing and subsequent digital publishing of my “little” samurai novel is complete. The first words were typed while I was on a break from teaching a special education class in El Segundo, California, and the final words were written in an uncomfortable high chair in a Starbucks that was attached to Marriot in Sacremento, California. That is somewhat symbolic for me, as there were as many words written away from home as at home; my life has been in a state of upheaval for some time, but I still got the work done.  Muramasa was definitely the…

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Site Update: What I’ve Learned, and Where I’m Going.

My samurai tale, Muramasa: Blood Drinker, will be finishing its online run in the next few weeks. For those of you who thought everything would wrap up neatly yesterday… You didn’t think I’d let everything go so easily, did you? I’ve learned a lot through the serial publication of this story over the last few months, and I’m ready to share some of that with you, and to talk about some upcoming experimentation. For those of you who are authors, I hope it will be an interesting discussion of a rather unorthodox business model that will inform your own decisions.…

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Fiction in the digital age: What do we do as writers?

Muramasa and the Mass Media Market The online run of Muramasa: Blood Drinker is soon coming to an end. It won’t be a swift end, and it probably will not have the end that was expected by my tortured readers, but it will be a good end. The right end. Rather than taking time and energy at the end of that project’s publication to wonder about the future, I thought it might be better to look ahead a little (ahem) ahead of time. The Downfall of Traditional Media “Prometheus Bound” – Peter Paul Rubens, c. 1618 The vision for this…

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Everyday Skeptic, Part 3: Credible Evidence

Note: The video portion of this article could not be completed due to time constraints. It will be added on a future date. While it is very possible to dismiss many claims using the rules of logic covered in the last installment of the series, you are still likely to encounter claims that, while adhering to the rules in their format, still warrant a bit of skepticism from you, the reader. This is because not all claims have credible evidence. Just to review from last week: A statement is true if it is a positive claim and there is credible evidence to…

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