92 % of all Americans believe in a God

According to a new Gallup poll, 92% of all Americans believe in God. The Atlantic tries to turn this into a west/east thing by headlining “East Coast Americans Least Likely to Believe in God”. What’s that low number, you may ask? 86%.

Gallup notes that in particular, the belief in God is high across all subgroups of the population, but there are variances. Women are more likely to believe in god than men. Liberals are less likely to believe than conservatives. Young people are the least likely to believe. Those with a post-graduate education are less likely to believe than high school or college graduates. Finally, East Coast Americans are the least likely to believe in god, and Southerners are the most, with the West and the Midwest coming in equally in between.

All the above quoted distributions are a no-brainer, but the actual numbers are still mind-boggling. 92%!

A map – of the universe

Towel day was just a few days ago, so it’s probably a good idea to provide you with yet another document that might be of help in case you need to find your way around. Like a map of the entire universe:

It was compiled by the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and if you want to learn more about it, here is all the information you need (including movies).

Celebration, Florida

The Felice Brothers, a combo which I’m quite fond of, just released their latest album “Celebration, Florida”. I haven’t had a chance yet to listen to the album, but in the course of my research (that is, searching for “Celebration, Florida” on the Interwebs) I stumbled upon a Wikipedia entry on the actual place called Celebration, of course located in Florida. And it’s kind of creepy:

In the early 1990s, the Disney Development Company (DDC) established the Celebration Company to spearhead its development within approximately 4,900 acres (20 km2) of land in the southern portion of the Reedy Creek Improvement District. Total investment for the project is estimated at US$2.5 billion.

That’s right. Celebration, Florida was developed by the Disney corporation. And I’m obviously not the only person who thinks that’s a tad Stepfordish. British combo Chumbawamba seemed to think so too when they released a song called “Celebration, Florida”. It includes fun lyrics like these:

They’re sharing homemade corn chips
Even the dogs get facelifts
Down in Celebration, Florida

There’s a bake sell at the schoolhouse
And they’re selling innocence
They’re keeping out the deviants
To protect the residents
Of Celebration, Celebration, Florida

There’s nation fighting nation
There’s kids with malnutrition
But not in Celebration, Florida

Social engineering
It gives you that fuzzy feeling
Down in Celebration, Florida

Listen to the whole thing here:

From biggest donor to biggest recipient

The Guardian takes a look at how people are coping with the enormous clean-up efforts after the Japanese Tsunami:

It is a phenomenal engineering and waste management challenge. The government estimates it will take three years to deal with the 25m tonnes of debris, which will have to be scrapped, burnt or recycled. This includes at least 16 towns, 95,000 buildings, 23 railway stations and hundreds of kilometres of roads, railway tracks and sea walls.

The World Bank estimates the cost at $235bn (£144bn), making it the world’s most expensive disaster. With charity pouring in from overseas, EU diplomats believe Japan – formerly the world’s biggest donor – may become the world’s biggest aid recipient this year.