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Weekend Reads 4/9/16

Is Ken Ham’s Rapid Post-Flood Diversification Really Evolution?

Take canine species for example. Neo-creationists propose a single common ancestral pair of all modern species, which ironically they have identified from the fossil record, was preserved on Noah’s ark. That pair of ancestors departed the Ark and promptly split into two species. How? Natural selection, mutation and genetic drift – the hallmark mechanisms of evolution.

Mass Surveillance Silences Minority Opinions

We need imperfect security­ -- systems that free people to try new things, much the way off-the-record brainstorming sessions loosen inhibitions and foster creativity. If we don't have that, we can't slowly move from a thing's being illegal and not okay, to illegal and not sure, to illegal and probably okay, and finally to legal.

This presidential campaign is making Americans like Obama — and that's good for Dems in November

Much research, including my own, has found that the president’s approval rating is a key predictor of the election results even when the president is not on the ballot. Thus a very unpopular George W. Bush probably doomed John McCain to defeat in 2008 no matter what happened during the campaign that year.

Are the Pews Half Empty or Half Full? Lessons from 734 A.D.

Way back in 734, Bede was bemoaning the church’s death-spiral—which was not, in fact, happening. Following his time-honored example, down-in-the-mouth pastors still complain about AWOL parishioners. But maybe we shouldn’t.

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