Posts by David Hood

  • Hard News: Anzac Day II,

    "They fought for our freedoms" is a bit of a red flag to a bull phrase to me about Gallipoli. Maybe the Turks were there fighting for their freedoms, but to me the New Zealanders were there trying their best as footsoldiers in a war of empires strategy dreamt up in London.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: This Anzac Day,

    I went to one of the smaller satellite events in the area of Dunedin, as my daughter was involved in posy laying with Girl Guides.

    People might be familiar with the way the older generations (including my own) will tend to mumble through the Maori verse of the National Anthem (in the typical public ceremony verse 1 in Maori and English) as many people are not confident of the wording.

    I would take it as a sign of the increasing secularization of New Zealand that that Maori verse was positively deafening when compared to the response to singing a hymn (for which the words were provided). Very few in the crowd had the slightest idea of how the words fitted the accompanying music, so I felt it verged on an instrumental piece.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A conversation from belief, in reply to Francis Ritchie,

    I can, but it is a very quick and dirty graph from the data sitting on Wikipedia (intentional homicide rate by country/ irreligion rate by country) and one of the issues is that while homicide is a reliable indicator (it gets reported) it is a rare event (so the rate moves a bit between years). This means that it is a bit risky reading too much into individual positions.

    That said there are number of Latin American countries in the high religion high homicide upper left quadrant.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A conversation from belief, in reply to Emma Hart,

    Attachment

    I find the belief that you can’t absolutely terrifying, as if, were there not a church to tell you right from wrong, you’d just be running around stabbing people in the face whenever the mood took you.

    To be fair, Francis did rhetorically say "some make" not "I make", so I'm going to give him the benefit of doubt that he isn't making an argument that both demonises those who are not Christian in the lights of the speaker, and is so veritably untrue if you spend a few minutes making a graph of murder rates vs irreligion rates around the world.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: The Easter Show,

    "Imagining the classical mind is so hard precisely because it was a pre-Christian one"

    I'm having a hard time imagining how the classical mind, if defined by it's absence of Christianity, differs from large parts of the world that have never had significant exposure to Christianity to the extent that it underlies their culture. And I don't see those people as being so different.

    Those inscrutable Romans, eh.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: The Easter Show, in reply to Russell Brown,

    . But do all those Maori call themselves atheists? Probably not. It’s all quite complicated.

    This is where you can get very different results from the census if you look at language fluency compared to descent. There is a whole complicated area around that.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: The Easter Show, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I also don’t think the state has any legitimate public interest in collecting data on people’s religious affiliations.

    I think so long as the state gives tax free benefits to Religions compared to other organisations, there is a legitimate reason for collecting the information, along with the Religion/Ethnicity nexus have a demographic effect on population models, education demand etc. for long term planning of infrastructure.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: The Easter Show, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    I think you need to parse that one a little carefully, because I'm assuming you're including those who tick the "object to state" box.

    Nope, 2013 census total New Zealand:

    No Religion: 1635345
    Christian: 1858977
    Object to State: 173034
    Total Stated: 3901167

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Access: Here's to them,

    minor typo- the post starts "When Fiona and became parents"

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

  • Capture: Aurora Australis,

    Sorta related to the whole dim light thing, human beings emit photons

    http://io9.com/human-bodies-glow-proving-that-the-world-is-weirder-th-1692485686

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 952 posts Report Reply

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