The Rise of the Charlatans

At the birth of every conspiracy theory is the question, “Who profits?” In the dark reaches of anonymous Internet forums, the answer is always Big Government, Big Pharma, Big Farm-a and occasionally Satan, aliens, the Illuminati, the Knights Templar, or the Pentavirate—some omnipotent all-powerful force that enviously pulls off vast nefarious synchronization perfectly. And this… Continue reading

Choosing Weed Policy Over Cyber Security

A cyber attack altered your holiday movie choices last year. Sony Pictures was the victim of a massive security breach. Personal emails were revealed, films pirated and employee data leaked. The corporation immediately kowtowed to the terrorists, rumored to be North Korean-sponsored, killing the theatrical release of the third in a trilogy of Seth Rogan… Continue reading

Column: A Tale of Two Christmases

Last Saturday, I found myself sharing a New York City subway train with protesters from the Millions March and drunken revelers from SantaCon. Both events drew comparable-sized crowds, hovering around 25,000 participants each. Both ended up on the tiny island of Manhattan on the same day. And this coincidence is a perfect metaphor for Christmas… Continue reading

Column: Thank Secularists for Christmas

According to thinkers like also-ran presidential candidate Rick Santorum, America is a Christian nation. Really? The Bible is pro-slavery and pro-monarch—two things Americans are (now at least) decidedly against. So how are we a Christian nation, exactly? “It’s because of the Pilgrims trek to the New World in search of religious liberty that makes us… Continue reading

Column: Republicans Can Stop Pretending They Want Immigration Reform

Illegal immigrants are the perfect Republican foe. They’re easily exploited as low-cost workers benefiting business and easily maligned for being “lawless” benefiting politicians. They’re a foreign other with a tendency not to speak English so suspicion is ready-made. Plus how are illegal immigrants going to stick up for themselves? They’re not. They’re an ideal rival!… Continue reading

Column: Think Over ‘Under God’

Did you hear atheists are suing god? According to Fox News’ for-profit preacher Mike Huckabee they do it all the time! “Dear Lord!” he tweeted this week, “Atheists are suing God AGAIN!” Never mind the spurious premise of a group of people suing the very thing they don’t believe in. That’d be like Republicans suing… Continue reading

Column: The Governors Who Cried Quarantine

In 2005, Hurricane Ivan was a Category 5 storm headed for New Orleans. “Mayor Ray Nagin declared a state of emergency and strongly recommended that residents evacuate immediately,” reported CNN.com at the time. Roughly half—600,000—residents left; the majority stayed. The storm passed. New Orleans was unscathed. Elected officials had sounded the alarm, like they were… Continue reading