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  1. Copernicus

    The Curse of Eliminative Materialism

    What is Eliminative Materialism? Most of us infidels are materialists and physicalists. That is, we believe that mental states are a property of physical brain activity and that there is no separate spiritual plane of existence. IOW, immaterial spirits such as gods and ghosts don't really...
  2. Copernicus

    US government strikes back at Russian cyberterrorists

    The US government and allies have finally managed to hit back at cyberterrorists gangs operating out of Russia (with the apparent blessing of the Russian government). In this case, they focused on REvil, which had attacked a software management company in the summer. Not only did they obtain a...
  3. Copernicus

    Republican Secretary of State in Washington has resigned

    I voted against electing this Republican, Kim Wyman, for Secretary of State, because I did not want a Republican to run the election machinery in our state. To be fair, she has been a fair election official, and she even defended our all-mail voting system against Trump's lies in 2020. To be...
  4. Copernicus

    Justice Department sues Georgia for voting laws that target black voters

    See In Suing Georgia, Justice Department Says State's New Voting Law Targets Black Voters. Assuming that this case reaches the Supreme Court, do you believe that the conservative majority will side with the DoJ or Georgia? My opinion is that the conservative majority on the Supreme Court will...
  5. Copernicus

    Nagel's Batty Explanation of the Mind-Body Problem

    In 1974, Philosopher Thomas Nagel published his classic 17-page explanation of why it is so difficult to understand the physical basis of consciousness: What is it Like to Be a Bat? In internet discussion forums, people love to argue over the nature of consciousness. Most people seem to...
  6. Copernicus

    The Rise of the "Nones"

    Although the Nones are now a well-established category of religiously unaffiliated people, it groups together people who still consider themselves religious with those who do not. It has been steadily growing in the US, as more and more people abandon organized religions. For the first time...
  7. Copernicus

    Biden expels Russian diplomats and imposes sanctions

    Vladimir Putin no longer has a friend in the White House. He got away with four years of cyberattacks and meddling in our domestic politics, but now the chickens have come back to roost. There will also be actions taken that are not announced, but the public actions are fairly mild and...
  8. Copernicus

    Putin's invasion force on Ukrainian border

    Putin is now amassing an invasion force on the border of Ukraine, although nobody seems to know what his intentions are. He could just be looking for a distraction from sagging popularity ratings, or maybe he wants to rattle sabers as a way of building leverage against impending sanctions in...
  9. Copernicus

    Vaccine Resistance and the COVID Passport Effect

    In the US and particularly among conservatives, there is strong resistance to measures that prevent the spread of the disease or even acknowledge its existence. Medical experts believe that mass vaccinations are a necessary step in bringing the pandemic under control, but too many people are...
  10. Copernicus

    Language in Russia and Ukraine - political implications (derail from Russia-Gate in US Poli forum)

    Although I'm certain that people get beaten in Ukraine for speaking both Russian and Ukrainian, a lot of Ukrainians speak Russian or Surzhyk (blend of Russian and Ukrainian) as their native language. Ukrainian is the dominant language in western portions of the country, whereas Russian...
  11. Copernicus

    Putin's Palace by Alexei Navalny

    Alexei Navalny has returned to Russia, where his plane was diverted from its scheduled arrival airport to thwart plans of supporters to greet him and to immediately have him arrested. He is now in jail, as are roughly 4,000 people who were rounded up during protests by supporters. One of his...
  12. Copernicus

    Will there be war with Iran?

    We are in the most dangerous period of the Trump presidency, and January 3 is the anniversary of the assassination that Trump ordered against former Quds head Qassem Soleimani. Iran has vowed revenge, and there have been indications that they are planning something big. With Trump at the head...
  13. Copernicus

    Donald Trump's Fortune by the decades

    Here is how Donald Trump's fortune fared over the past five decades: 1) 1970s: Donald inherits father Fred Trump's real estate empire in Brooklyn, which Fred continued to run behind the scenes. 2) 1980s: Donald gets terrific press reviews for being the face of Fred Trump's real estate...
  14. Copernicus

    Will Russia Invade Belarus?

    The news coming out of Belarus these days is grim and scary for the world's autocrats, dictators, and Putin lovers everywhere. What is happening there looks like a replay of Ukraine's Orange Revolution, which led Putin to invade Ukraine, annex Crimea, and occupy the Donbass region, where he is...
  15. Copernicus

    Leningrad: Russian Shock Rock Band

    To keep up my Russian, I listen to a lot of Russian music. The raunchy band "Leningrad" is one of the most interesting groups. Three of their songs are in the soundtrack of the great movie "Everything is Illuminated". You can see some of their videos on Youtube (with English subtitles). Lots of...
  16. Copernicus

    Why "Chinese Virus" is racist

    Some people are arguing that the term "Chinese flu" is not racist--that it is just another case of political correctness from the left. The most famous proponent of this view is, of course, Donald Trump, but the theme goes well beyond him. (See Trump Defends Using ‘Chinese Virus’ Label...
  17. Copernicus

    My Vacation Cruise in Asia during the Wuhan Flu Scare

    My wife and I had booked a cruise from Hong Kong to Singapore on the Crystal Symphony. It departs on February 15. The cruise and flights were paid for in advance. Then the Wuhan coronavirus emerged bringing a wave of hysterical reaction around the world. Don't get me wrong. This flu virus...
  18. Copernicus

    American Neo-Nazi Terrorist Group Directed from Russia

    BBC News and The Guardian have run stories on the secretive head of a neo-Nazi terrorist group based largely in the US Pacific Northwest. The head of the group, Rinaldo Nazzaro, reportedly lives in St. Petersburg, Russia, now with his Russian wife, but he directs activities in the US. He...
  19. Copernicus

    Should the House begin impeachment hearings?

    There are renewed calls for impeachment hearings. The purpose of this thread is to discuss just that issue. Vote your preference on the basis of what you think Congress ought to do and explain why in the body of the thread.
  20. Copernicus

    Ukraine election: What would a comic president mean?

    The top vote winner in the first round of Ukrainian presidential elections was political novice Volodymyr Zelenskiy. Ironically, Zelenskiy is best known for his portrayal of political novice history teacher who wins election by accident in a TV Comedy series ("Servant of the People" or "Слуга...
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