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April 13, 2009



"I think Susan purposefully appeared dowdy in order to smash expectations and aid the "wow" response she deservedly got."

Please tell me, Debbie, that her eyebrows were not real, but fake!


I think she looks lovely just the way she is! :)

Patrick R. Sullivan

Whatever else you can say about Apalled, he/she/it has mastered the art of the non sequitur.


Very few outstanding female singers are sylph- like are they? And most of us--even the most lovely--living on the dole in some cold water flat in some out of the way dump in Scotland after having sacrificed to care for mum wouldn't look too fantastic. (Check out The OMG paparazzi shots of the stars in their unbuffed moments and I think you'll agree.)


I think the constrast between the way she looked v. the way she sang was pivotal to her video going viral, and she's smart enough to have known that. And who were those two blokes who were shepherding her around, and how did they know she'd be astonishing?


I've been reading the UK writeups about her, and it is really quite inspiring.

She has never had a boyfriend or ever been kissed.

She was made fun of due to a learning disability in school, and the local kids still make fun of her.

She lives with her cat Pebbles.

She was mortified by herself on the telly and said she looked "like a garage" in the dress. She said she knew the telly added 10 lbs, but wasn't expecting that.

She is a devout Catholic and got a standing O at her church on Easter Sunday.

She has sung around her village, and has done church choir and karaoke and some local charity gigs. She sang with MUIR?!? whoever that is before at a charity event.

I don't think the before or after of the performance was "put on" and I think she is probably gonna prove resistant to much change as she is "happy with how I look." (I do think the eyebrows need some work)

BTW the disability is due to a lack of oxygen at birth and she would probably be classified as "a slow-learner."

All in all an amazing snapshot of someone who most would overlook and not expect much from, but who could teach alot of folks about the human spirit.


"that we are "nothing but glorified apes"

Look,if Appalled wants to be a glorified ape,give her a banana and let's move on.


Done--give HIM a banana,PUK.

I believe MUIR is last year's winner--a poor guy from around those parts with bad teeth who the judges and audience also treated disrespectfully until he opened his mouth and sang as beautifully as you've ever heard a human being sing.


Well, that certainly puts things in a different light. Thank you, Stephanie. I didn't see any indication of impairment. I saw a very confident lady who knew herself and liked herself just fine.

Charlie (Colorado)

1. While DeLay was quoting a letter -- he extravigantly praised the contents of it. (See the full quote above).It is certainly fair to state that the letter reflected DeLay's views back in 1999.

Perhaps. But it then isn't fair to say that Krugman's paraphrase of Frank's malicious paraphrase of a single point pulled out of context does.

. The question really boils down to -- is the difference between "the teaching of evolution in schools contributed to Columbine" (what the letter implied) and "the teaching of evolution in schools caused Columbine" (what Krug said DeLay said) so great that there's a material misrepresentation if you say the latter. I find the former idea utterly daft -- so perhaps I don't see much space between the two.

Precisely. The problem here is that it takes you multiple false inferences to get there.

First, the original letter is phrased as a whole list of things that contribute, twelve of them by my count. So, assuming equal weight — which I think is excessively generous, if conservative — the contribution of teaching evolution can't be more than about 8 percent of the whole. So the original fact of the extraction out of context means it's taking 1/12th of the argument for the whole.

Second, you're inferring that suggesting that the way evolution is taught may contribute to whatever lack of socialization was involved implies that the author believes any teaching of evolution would cause that. That's a false generalization, and therefore fallacious.

Third, you're suggesting that by reading the letter in general with approval means DeLay believes completely in each subtopic in the argument, which is not exactly intellectually honest.

Fourth, you're implying that Frank's paraphrase — which would otherwise be called a "misquotation" or "mischaracterization" — fairly represents what the original writer said. At least "fairly" within your rather, heh, liberal, standards.

And finally, as I already pointed out, you're declaring that Krugman's paraphrase of Frank's paraphrase of his false equation of one-twelfth of the original letter out of context with the whole, further ascribing that as DeLay's actual opinion.

But then, as you said, you're inclined to think the worst of DeLay, and since it's all political, you apparently think that all is fair in loe and war.

You may recall the amount of tsuris I've received for insisting that we not ascribe to Obama motives that weren't supported by anything he'd actually said, so you can probably guess I don't agree.

Charlie (Colorado)

I believe DeLay, unprompted, would say that the teaching evolution in schools is a symptom of the moral decay that allowed Columbine to happen.

Appalled, that would be an example of what is known, in scholastic philosophy, as "making shit up."

Charlie (Colorado)

PUK, do you have even the slightest bit of evidence on which you believe that socialism depended in any way upon the theory of evolution?

I wonder, because it' the other side's epithet that the position of conservatives is "social darwinism"; and further that humanity can be perfected in a very short time by adopting their new economics; this belief in quick perfectibility was a major reason why Lysenko found such favor.

Charlie (Colorado)

Isn't Boyle something though?

It wasn't quite the same, since it was trying out for a little musical in front of my friends, but that look of slack-jawed surprise is what I saw too, the first time I sang in an audition.

There are not many feelings that can beat it.

I am, by the way completely in vole with that bonde judge. Who *is* she?

Charlie (Colorado)

"completely in love".


JM Hanes


Symptom vs. cause = excessive nuance!

By your own lights, having endorsed and defended Krugman's proposition, you're being intellectually dishonest, scoring partisan points, extracting from Delay's letter reading the most extreme thing he said, and tagging him with it. All in the best tradition of partisan hackery.

"By the way, has anyone been able to find DeLay denying the gloss the Dems put on his words on Columbine?"

If he hasn't denied it, it must be true! We've got your hackery right here.

"I don't think, somehow, this is one of TM's more serious posts."

Right. He only included 19 separate links to other source material to make it look like a serious post.


One reason it's so hard to pull my rear away from here are the funny comments like JMH's and bad's and the rapier thrusts of Chaco and Cathy and..oh, heck, I love you all.


Revolutionaries are like that,they love scientific theories that can further their revolutions.Lysenko attracted their interest in the 1920s.
Further, Lysenko found favour because after the mass starvation cause by the collectivisation of the Kulaks,the Communists would have embraced any theory that helped stave off famine.Further,it was under Stalin that he became Director of the Institute of Genetics in circa1940.
In many ways Lysenkoism has parallels with the garbage our political elite believe about MMGW.
I'll leave you to delve into "scientific" Marxism.Yes it is quick fix perfectability.

JM Hanes


"It's the old "fake but accurate" argument. Once it is invoked, you can't win the argument."

You sure can ::hammer:: a nail though.


Just a quickie"

"Darwin, who was born 200 years ago today, was hailed by early Soviet leaders as an "intellectual hero" whose work on evolution and the natural sciences played a key role in the formation of modern communist doctrine."

Keeping it simple.


Charlie, Amanda Holden.

A LUN I'm sure you'll enjoy.

You're welcome! ;)

Oh and here's a bio... via Wiki.

Amanda Holden has appeared in several stage musicals and in 2004 was nominated for a Laurence Olivier Theatre Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance in the West End production of Thoroughly Modern Millie[3].

Her most recent TV appearance was in the ITV1 drama Wild at Heart, alongside Stephen Tompkinson. The first series aired in 2006 and a second series followed in early 2007. Series 3 ran from January 20 to March 9, 2008.

Amanda's other TV credits include three series of the hit comedy Kiss Me Kate alongside Caroline Quentin, three series of the ITV comedy series The Grimleys, Celeb with Harry Enfield, the critically acclaimed BBC series Hearts and Bones alongside Damien Lewis and a Boxing Day special Marple alongside Geraldine McEwan and John Hannah. She also co-starred with Bill Nighy and Sir Tom Courtenay in Ready When You Are, Mr McGill, Jack Rosenthal's classic comedy drama.


In that paragraph are the words "teach" and "evolutionized".

And in between comes "nothing but glorified apes" which conceivably could be viewed as relevant to Columbine. Great apes do in fact go on killing rages as do adult male chimps.

Other than "evolutionized" not actually being a real word, the idea that all life evolved from primordial goo does not seem relevant. Some folk don't buy it so I suspect it's included simply to discredit the "nothing but apes" remark as being valid science.


As I said, appalled, you have no clue what is at risk and why.

By acting suitably flip, you have demonstrated you are not worth talking to. You have violated trust. And, once lost, that trust can never be regained.

You have marked yourself. Deal with it.


".It is certainly fair to state that the letter reflected DeLay's views back in 1999."

And you haven't once accurately represented what those are... that teachers do a disservice to the human race by presenting us as JUST ANIMALS.

It is entirely possible to believe that (as I do) while simultaneously agreeing with evolution (as I do). You accept, in fact, Barney Frank's cheap shot.



That was a great photo. I envy you your talent.


Cool dolphin story from Xinhua China news. I always seem to find something of unusual interest in their papers. You guys being cooks, this story in yesterdays China Daily about this">http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2009-04/14/content_7675089.htm">this chef's celebrated ability to handroll noodles thin enough to pass through the eye of a needle seemed sufficiently nutty for comment.

As to the Darwin/Marx Controversy:

Frequently I read where supposedly Marx wrote to Darwin for permission to dedicate Das Kapitol to him. This">http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CA/CA002_2.html">This rebutal of that claim is I believe correct.

PUK, do you have even the slightest bit of evidence on which you believe that socialism depended in any way upon the theory of evolution?
Margaret Sanger.

"He’s a brilliant economist"...


Yeah and I'm the Wizzard of Oz...

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