Jewish date: 2 ’Adhar 5770 (Parashath Terumah).
Today’s holiday: Tuesday of the Sixth Week of Ordinary Time/Shrove Tuesday/Mardi Gras (Roman Catholicism).
Worthy cause of the day: “MoveOn.org Political Action: Toyota: Stop lobbying against car safety”.
Topic 1: “BIBLE CODE PREDICTIONS: 2010” (noted in “Utah to be destroyed by a comet! Or not!”). According to this site, based on hidden codes in the Hebrew Bible, Utah is supposed to be destroyed on March 1 by a comet impact. I have no trust in Bible codes. YHWH is quite capable of giving direct messages, and the Hebrew Bible is full of them. Some of these messages, such as “do not worship idols” and “treat the poor well”, proved difficult for people to keep and thus were repeated by the prophets over and over again so that even someone who is not particularly bright can see they are there. Looking for hidden codes, as demonstrated in Michael Drosnin’s heretical The Bible Code, is an easy way for people to latch onto the Hebrew Bible (or whatever scripture they hold dear) as important and completely ignore the text’s actual message. I also have grave doubts that the methodology of Bible codes is actually valid; The Skeptic's Dictionary reports that the unlikely message “The Bible Code is a silly, dumb, fake, false, evil, nasty, dismal fraud and snake-oil hoax.” was found hidden in Drosnin’s The Bible Code II: The Countdown. If one can find a message as long, unambiguous, and unlikely to be intentional as that hidden in such a book, one can forget about the short, ambiguous, messages of the Bible codes being real. But to be open-minded, I have decided to put the predictive power of this dabbler in Bible codes to the test. Therefore I have put “Comet destroys Utah” on my calendar for March 1, and we will see if it really comes to pass. If it does (which would be surprising, since one would think a state-annhilating comet would have been noticed by astronomers already), then the Bible-coder will have something to gloat about.
Topic 2: “Was Haiti Punished for Sin?”: Rav Shmuley Boteach has clearly read Job and knows that bad things happen to those who do not deserve them.
Topic 3: For today’s religious humor: “Basement cat”: