Science, technology, and life.

Nov. 18 2010 9:18 AM

Pro-Life, Pro-Choice Progress

Recently, pro-life and pro-choice thinkers met at Princeton University for a frank, open-minded discussion of their differences and possible areas of collaboration. It was a useful conversation, illuminating several steps each side could take to advance a common agenda. Here are the takeaways for pro-lifers —and for pro-choicers .

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Oct. 12 2010 10:19 AM

Sodomy and Orgasms: Alternative Theories

Well, shame on me. Not for talking about sodomy—that taboo seems to be fading fast—but for doubting that women love it. These women are now coming forward to affirm that they're into it for their own pleasure, thank you very much. And they aren't alone. Bloggers, blog readers, and Slate commenters are offering lots of other theories to explain the orgasm data.

More here .

Oct. 7 2010 8:56 AM

Sodomy and Orgasms

In 1992, 16 percent of women aged 18-24 said they'd tried anal sex. Now 20 percent of women aged 18-19 say they've done it, and by ages 20-24, the number is 40 percent. In 1992, the highest percentage of women in any age group who admitted to anal sex was 33. In 2002, it was 35. Now it's 46. ...

Check out the orgasm data. Among women who had vaginal sex in their last encounter, the percentage who said they reached orgasm was 65. Among those who received oral sex, it was 81. But among those who had anal sex, it was 94. Anal sex outscored oral.

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Oct. 5 2010 10:24 PM

The Invisible Roommate

Like countless college freshmen before him, Tyler Clementi needed a place to make out, but he had a roommate. So he asked his roommate to clear out of their Rutgers dorm room for a couple of hours. The roommate, Dharun Ravi, obliged him. But Ravi left something behind: his computer. It had a webcam and an Internet connection. That's how Ravi got back into the room. He never touched the door or window. He just tapped into the webcam from a friend's computer down the hall.

Today's freshmen are grappling with something much stranger than being gay. They're growing up in a world where people are with you even when they aren't.

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Aug. 29 2010 11:58 AM

Stem-Cell Throwback

The stem-cell ruling, issued Monday by U.S. District Chief Judge Royce Lamberth, says that federal funding of research using cells derived from destroyed embryos violates federal law. Pro-lifers are ecstatic. "Court Strikes Down Obama Administration Stem Cell Policy," crows Americans United for Life. But this ruling goes way beyond Obama. It voids Bush's stem-cell policy, too. And it does so on flimsy grounds with sloppy reasoning.

More here and here .

Aug. 25 2010 12:38 AM

Is Donald Duck a Pervert?

We've seen this pattern before: an allegation of groping, followed by a bunch of other people recalling similar abuse. The initial charge makes the rest of the claims credible. But sometimes the allegations, and even the triggered memories, are false. That's what happened to Tigger. Don't let it happen to Donald Duck.

More here .

Aug. 25 2010 12:30 AM

The Oil Spill's Ironic Ending

In early May, BP began drilling a relief well to stop the leak. Two weeks later, under orders from the government, it initiated a second relief well. The second well now extends 15,874 feet below the water's surface, and the first has reached a depth of 17,864 feet —just 100 feet from its destination. The point was to kill the leak by pumping mud and cement into the bottom of the troubled well. But now that the cap is in place, BP and the government are considering a " static kill "—pumping in the fatal mud from the top. Three months of drilling for nothing.

More here .

July 14 2010 12:46 PM

Ability, Heredity, and "Race"

There's nothing unusual about dismissing race as social construct. Racism watchdogs do it all the time. But they do it precisely to deny hereditary differences between blacks and whites. The authors of this study are affirming hereditary differences. That's what they mean by "survival fitness in different parts of the globe during thousands of years." Evolution in Europe and evolution in Africa produced different results.

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July 13 2010 3:09 PM

Sex, Food, and Shame

Knee-jerk denunciations of shame, sin, and disgust are a tired and shallow kind of feminism. The food analogy makes that pretty clear. You can try to paint every moral criticism of porn or sexual extremity as an attack on women, but when the same criticisms are offered against men in eating contests-mindless orgies, commercial exploitation, abuse of the body-it's time to open your mind to the possibility that, no, this isn't just about patriarchy or controlling sex.

More here .

July 8 2010 7:49 AM

Major League Eating

Fifty years from now, when historians are looking for a moment that captures the depravity of our age—the gluttony, the self-destruction, the craving for worthless fame—it won't be bathhouses, Big Love , or AdultFriendFinder. It'll be Joey Chestnut stuffing that 68 th hot dog down his unresisting gullet, live on ESPN.

More here .

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