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Nautilus, 28 February, reviews a book by a Professor of Psychiatry at the American University of Yale. The article is titled Evolution Is Going According to God’s Plan. The reviewer says its author believes ‘evolutionary theory is, in fact, theologically reaffirming; natural selection is purposeful and guided, and provides both evidence for a creator.’ Double quelle surprise! The Prof is a lifelong Mormon and is now a Latter Day Saints Bishop.

It seems it’s not only Christian evangelicals who have problems with reality, other religions do too. The Yetkin Report, 23 February, notes that those in charge of education in Turkey, having their country’s children’s best interests at heart, banned Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution from being taught in schools several years ago. Now ‘The Ministry of (Turkey’s) National Education, under the title of the biology curriculum, has introduced the notion of creationism into the 2024-25 schedule’.

Atlantic Council, 16 February, reports an elderly Iranian gentleman has seriously upset the Iranian authorities and has quite rightly (ahem) been taken into custody to undergo rehabilitation. George Orwell’s 1984 wasn’t just a work of fiction but a manual used by totalitarian regimes for the suppression of dissent. Totalitarian? Did someone mention Julian Assange? The heinous crime of this individual? Posting himself singing and dancing on social media. ‘The hardline Islamist world-view of the Islamic Republic, and its small but powerful constituency, subscribes to outlawing public dancing and singing as “un-Islamic” practices.’

American politician Mike Johnson again. Windytimes (14 February) notes that he flies three flags outside his office. The national flag, the State flag and ‘a white flag with a green tree in the centre and the words “An Appeal to Heaven”. This flag, which originated in the American Revolution, today is associated with a religious movement, New Apostolic Reformation, a rapidly growing force among various evangelical and charismatic groups that seeks to conform society’s seven spheres—education, religion, family, business, government, arts, and entertainment—with their interpretations of Christian scriptures and history’.

Any extraterrestrials who arrive to check out the third rock from the Sun would, if they have any sense, turn right around and avoid it like the proverbial. It is to be sincerely hoped that such visitors are not Vogons intent on demolishing the planet to provide an interplanetary space by-pass. Douglas Adams in his series of books beginning with Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy was using his imagination. There have been many who have insisted that they have indeed been abducted by aliens or who have been taken up into a UFO and had unspeakable things happen to them.

A Frenchman named Claude Maurice Marcel Vorilhon claimed to have met with ETs and, in December 1973, formed the Raëlian Movement and changed his name to Raël. Perhaps these alien visitors possess a twisted sense of humour because the number of times that various religious/cult founders have had revelations conveyed to them through hearing or meeting with ‘other worldly’ beings is quite a coincidence.


Worldwide, 1.4 billion children aged under 16 lack any form of social protection, leaving them vulnerable to disease, poor nutrition and poverty.

With church attendance falling, many Belgian churches are being given a new lease of life instead of being closed down. In one church in Mechelen, visitors now raise a glass instead of raising a prayer.

’It is important to understand aspects of human evolution so that you feel a part of humanity,’ Black says. ’So many people feel isolated, excluded or discarded because of the way they look or what culture they practice. By understanding human origins, people will see that we are all more united than divided in so many ways’.

According to Mohammad Esmaeili Mahjoub, head of Tehran Municipality’s department for managing social issues, there has been a concerning rise in cases of abandoned elderly individuals. He revealed that since the start of the year, approximately 25 cases have been encountered by their organization in the capital alone. Fatemeh Abbasi, deputy responsible for rehabilitation affairs at the national welfare organization, has also voiced alarm over the surge in homelessness, particularly among the elderly and mentally ill. She stated that many of these vulnerable individuals are left on the streets by families who can no longer afford their care.

Nick Hurley… said his firm had seen the number of businesses seeking advice on what to do about unexplained absences more than triple since the pandemic. Mr Hurley told The Telegraph: ’What we have noticed is in those sectors where perhaps wages and skills are a little lower, there is a definite increase in the number of employees who are just not showing up to work – and leaving the employer in the doo-doo, as it were.

Prince of Wales to build homes for the homeless on his Cornish estate.

The Trump administration’s neglect and incompetence helped put half-a-million Americans in the ground, dead from COVID-19. Joe Biden was elected president in part on the promise of setting us on a science-driven course correction, but, a little more than a year later, another half-a-million Americans were killed by the virus. What happened?

According to Federal Reserve data, industrial production in the US defense and space sectors has surged by 17.5% since the war began, and administration officials say 64% of the $60.7 billion designated for Ukraine in a $95 billion supplemental military package will come back to the US defense industrial base.
(International Clearing House, tinyurl.com/577azdhe)

The Houthis have recruited thousands of children since the start of the conflict in Yemen in 2014. The United Nations has verified at least 1,851 individual cases of child recruitment or use by the Houthis since 2010.

…the criminal court in Dhamar in northern Yemen sentenced nine individuals to death – with seven sentenced to be executed by stoning, and two by crucifixion – while 23 others were handed prison sentences between six months and 10 years on charges including ’homosexuality’, ’spreading immorality’, and ’immoral acts’.

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