May 3, 2015

Things it seems we should know by now.

1. The name of the princess baby.

2. The cause of the death of Sheryl Sandberg's husband. David Goldberg "died suddenly," last Friday, at the age of 47.

62 comments:

Birches said...

Yeah, I figured heart attack, but since we haven't heard cause of death, I now suspect something more sinister....

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

My mother worked for a very small town newspaper. They had code words for different deaths. If I remember correctly, "died suddenly" was heart attack. "Died at home" was suicide. "Died from a long illness" was cancer. Etc etc etc.

EDH said...

Maybe they were visiting the Grand Canyon when his wife said, "Lean In"?

Or, "Fat Out".

Danno said...

Two things I saw on the Internet and didn't click on since I really don't care.

However, I see the Madison City Council has made the non-religious a protected class!

Michael K said...

The longer the wait, the more likely suicide.

sydney said...

Are people posting mean things on his Facebook page? I know a woman whose son died unexpectedly last week at a young age. She said people were posting mean speculations as to the cause on his Facebook page.

Ann Althouse said...

""Died at home" was suicide."

What if the person wasn't at home.

Ann Althouse said...

"However, I see the Madison City Council has made the non-religious a protected class!"

Why the exclamation point? It's long been illegal to discriminate based on religion, and that obviously includes discriminating because of the lack of religion. I don't understand the excitement.

Ann Althouse said...

Atheism is a religious belief.

Kzookitty said...

"Things it seems women should know by now."

I assume this princess is one of that House of Hanover gang. Never heard of the man and wife.

kzookitty

The Cracker Emcee said...

"Atheism is a religious belief."

Yes! And not, as some believers would have it, because of the obnoxious fervor of the non-believer. Rather because all religion is a construction of man and does not necessarily have anything to do with a belief in, or submission to, God.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

"Mark Zuckerberg, chief executive of Facebook and a friend of the family, said it occurred while Mr. Goldberg was on vacation abroad with Ms. Sandberg."

Douglas said...

The odds are either suicide or drug overdose, given the silence from the family.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Ann Althouse said...
""Died at home" was suicide."

What if the person wasn't at home


Good point. Maybe "died suddenly" meant suicide. I don't remember the specifics. I just remember the use of euphemisms.

Eleanor said...

Atheism isn't a religious belief. It's the absence of a religious belief. Like cold is the absence of heat. Agnosticism is a religious belief.

Ann Althouse said...

"Atheism isn't a religious belief."

The legal question is whether a classification has been made based on religion, putting some people on one side of the line and others on the other. When a religion-based line is drawn, it puts atheists on one side.

The question whether atheists are properly called "religious" is irrelevant to the legal problem.

However, as a matter of ordinary, nonlegal thinking, it is obvious to me that people who believe that there is no God have a religious belief. They claim to be certain, sometimes, to actually know that there is no God, but plenty of people who think there is a God claim to know.

Ann Althouse said...

So I looked up "religious" in the OED. My favorite definition is:

5. Of a horse.

a. Prone to go down on the knees. Now rare.

1788 F. Grose Classical Dict. Vulgar Tongue (ed. 2) Religious horse, one much given to prayer, or apt to be down upon his knees.
1815 M. Faraday Let. 3 Mar. in B. Jones Life & Lett. Faraday I. iii. 198 A tailor would have said that the horse was religious..; but..I would rather have had a beast that would have gone on orderly upon his legs.
1914 G. W. Kennedy Pioneer Campfire iv. 182, I was afraid to ride his horse to water for fear it would fall down and kill me. Brother, his horse was religious.

Yancey Ward said...

I would guess, based on the silence, that Goldberg's death was a result of doing something stupid.

William said...

I hope she names the kid Blue Ivy or Green Apple or some such thing. Too many royal names are banal and unimaginative.

Darleen said...

"Died suddenly" can mean either self-inflicted (purposely or not) or unexpected due to some undiagnosed condition.

Aneurisms, especially in the brain, come to mind as devastating, unexpected deaths.

I lost a nephew a few months ago (28 y/o) who was severely ill with the flu, went to the hospital, dead in 4 days. They missed that he was also bleeding on the brain.

Original Mike said...

"Atheism is a religious belief."

It's a considered opinion.

Sam L. said...

I don't know, and I don't care to know.

Deirdre Mundy said...

On the subject of Devout Horses, from the history of Perry County, Indiana:

"He informed Father Bessonies that Father Benoit was "somewhere in the forest of Perry County, some 15 miles from Rome." He was to go in to Jasper where the Rev. Joseph Kundeck would give him further directions. In his memoirs, Father Bessonies recalled that the kind bishop gave him an Indian pony, a very devout one which fell frequently to his knees. Scarcely able to speak a word of English, he arrived at Jasper to learn that Father Benoit had left that morning for Vincennes and, using a map provided by Father Kundeck, he left Dubois County for the 35-mile ride to the Chapel settlement in Perry County. Realizing he had gone astray, Father Bessonies succeeded in finding Cassidy settlement. He recalled that the John Cassidy family received him kindly and promised to see him safely to the Chapel the next morning.

He came upon the log cabin of Jack Alvey, where he was told he was only six miles from the Chapel. After riding for three hours, he arrived at the log cabin of Thomas Alvey, where he learned he was still six miles from the Chapel and only one-half mile from the cabin of Jack Alvey, where he had been earlier that morning. Thomas Alvey, a Catholic, gave him breakfast, fed his horse, and sent his boy to take him home."

Since the priest was French, apparently the idiom transcends language.

Sebastian said...

"The legal question is whether a classification has been made based on religion"

That's the "legal" question.

The constitutional question is whether Congress made a law respecting an establishment of religion.

/snark

CatherineM said...

Sorry for your loss Darleen.

MaxedOutMama said...

Why should the public have the right to know the cause of Goldberg's death??

rcocean said...

Who is Ms. Sandberg?

Mary Beth said...

The princess link gives me a 404 error.

Freeman Hunt said...

My dad died at 59. I made sure the obituary included that he died of melanoma.

Coupe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bay Area Guy said...

I feel bad for the family, but as a matter of ethical journalism, is it acceptable to simply ignore the cause of death or conspicuous absence of any stated cause?

rcocean said...

"Atheism is a religious belief."

No its an opinion that God doesn't exist. You can't have a value system based on just not believing something.

For example, not believing in Nazism isn't a political belief, since anyone from a Commie to a Monarchist to someone with no positive political beliefs at all can NOT believe in Nazism. Same with Atheistism.

Bob Ellison said...

It is foolish to have an position on the merit of unknowable propositions.

Many Christians, including clergy, struggle with questions of faith.

Many prominent atheists seem smugly certain of the inexistence of God.

That is faith. That is religion.

Paddy O said...

"not believing in Nazism isn't a political belief,"

Atheism is more than a rejection of a particular religion, like this analogy would suggest.

Not believing in Islam would be more the equivalent. Not believing in Islam isn't a religious belief, but it does usually come out of some religious opinion of some kind.

Atheism is more like anarchism. Which in its rejection of state politics is indeed expressing a political philosophy.

Bruce Hayden said...

The cause of the death of Sheryl Sandberg's husband. David Goldberg...

I must be completely out of it. I didn't know who this guy was, nor his wife. And, after looking them up, wonder why his death was important to anyone except for immediate family.

Humperdink said...

"Atheism is a religious belief."

Belief in what?

Petunia said...

Atheism isn't so much a religion as it is a faith. One of the definitions of faith is a belief in something that cannot be proven. You can't prove a negative, so while there may, someday, be empirical proof of the existence of a deity or deities, there can never be proof that no deity exists.

I've already written my obituary, minus a few obvious details like date of and age at death, and cause, but those will be filled in after I'm gone. For Mr. Goldberg, I suspect suicide.

Charlotte Elizabeth Diana. Or Aethelburga Siegfrieda Eleanor.

Bob Ellison said...

Does Obama believe in God, or does he have faith that God does not exist? What about Hillary, or Bill, or Sanders, or Marx?

retired said...

All of them believe in political power above all. Except the Clintons who worship money to the point where they have grievously wounded her campaign in its pursuit. Not much belief left for God.

Smilin' Jack said...

They claim to be certain, sometimes, to actually know that there is no God, but plenty of people who think there is a God claim to know.

What pisses me off are the people who claim to know that I'm not God. Boy, are they in for a nasty surprise.

retired said...

Atheism is not a belief or a religion, rather an active rejection of God. Most of don't talk or think about things we don't exist. Not the fervent atheist.
Liberalism is a religion, with dogmas sacraments and excommunication. Even indulgences. Ask Algore.

Original Mike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Original Mike said...

"You can't prove a negative, so while there may, someday, be empirical proof of the existence of a deity or deities, there can never be proof that no deity exists."

The list of things we can not prove do not exist is very long.

jimbino said...

An atheist has no use for the "god hypothesis." He doesn't believe in "believing" itself.

I am a physicist and an atheist who has no use for the god hypothesis and who does NOT "believe" in gravity or any other natural phenomenon. We scientists value evidence and lend no credence to tall tales about unicorns, gods, talking snakes and donkeys, ghosts and giants of the Bible.

Belief is the last refuge of an idiot religious person who can't do simple math or contemplate nature with eyes open and brain engaged.

Fernandinande said...

Ann Althouse said...
Atheism is a religious belief.


That's incorrect.

It's a belief about religion, or more correctly, since not all religions posit gods and such, it's a belief about supernatural beings.

rcocean said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rcocean said...

"Atheism is more like anarchism. Which in its rejection of state politics is indeed expressing a political philosophy."

No it isn't. Anarchism is more than the rejection of state politics. Atheism is simply non-belief in God. There is no positive belief. Stalin, Bertrand Russell, Hitler, and Hemingway were all Atheists. These characters didn't agree on anything except God didn't exist.

MadisonMan said...

Freeman, my brother died of melanoma too. I don't think we included the cause in the obit (but then, we forgot to include the date of death too!)

People may have been confused by that.

Off the top of my head, I don't know who Sheryl Sandberg or David Goldberg is or was, as the case may be.

Rob McLean said...

We don't know anything about the royal baby yet because of course it was born deformed, and of course they're running around looking for a replacement. OK, not really, but these rumours happen every time there's a royal birth.

(Actually, if this is recurring problem, shouldn't they recruit a replacement baby beforehand? "Oi, crikey! The princess 'as popped out an awful thing with 'orns and flippers! Bring in the back-up baby, gov...!")

TosaGuy said...

Madison's atheists will still be able to discriminate against religious people.

Mel said...

The princess is not my business. The dead Survey Monkey CEO is not my business. I am not acquainted with either family; therefore, I am not sure that I need to either her name not his cause of death.
I am not sure I'll make it through this week without hearing either one, but I am not particularly offended that we don't know yet.

Gabriel said...

Starvation is a form of eating. A starving person has put "nothing" into his belly, so it is not actually empty.

Freedom is a form of slavery, because a slave has a master (his owner) and a free man has a master (himself).

An empty pie plate is a form of pie.

And the absence of belief in the supernatural is a type of belief in the supernatural.

To say that not-A is a subset of A is at worst a logical contradiction, and at best a metaphor, but in all cases it is confusion of concepts.

It's a bit like the Jimmy Smits skit on Saturday Night Live where he would contradict anything anyone said in order to sound profound. ("I'm sure glad that case is over." "Or maybe it's just beginning.")

Gabriel said...

Waitress: What kind of pie would you like with that?

Customer: I do not eat pie. I do not think anyone should eat pie. It's just flour, fat and filling. It's unhealthy and was only invented to make money for bakers.

This customer may be a fool, a knave, rude, or touched in the head, but there is one thing he is not. He is not a man who has ordered pie.

The Althouse commetariat, including its blogmistress, have said that this man has in fact ordered pie. None of these people appear to be drunk.

I hear three arguments here:

"He is free not to order pie, and this is covered under the freedom to order pie; not-ordering-pie is therefore a kind of ordering-pie."

"A man who does not order pie nonetheless must be eating something, and this something, whatever it is, fulfills the same role in his life that pie does; not-ordering-pie is therefore a kind of ordering-pie."

"He has ordered Not Pie, so Not Pie is the kind of pie he has ordered."

I can't say that any of these has much to recommend it.

Traveling is not the same thing as staying home, even though both are covered under freedom to travel. If you ask where I am going and I say "Nowhere", you are not making sense if you claims that I am indeed traveling if I am traveling to Nowhere. If you say that a homebody has all his needs fulfilled by something other than travel and is therefore a traveler, you are not making sense.

Ben Calvin said...

Friederike Amalia Wilhelmine Viktoria has a nice ring to it.

clint said...

Atheism isn't so much a religious belief as a category of religious belief.

Like theism.

"rcocean said...

Atheism is simply non-belief in God. There is no positive belief. Stalin, Bertrand Russell, Hitler, and Hemingway were all Atheists. These characters didn't agree on anything except God didn't exist."

Agnosticism is the non-belief in God.

Atheism is the belief in the nonexistence of God.

Theism is the belief in the existence of God.

Deists, devout Catholics, devout Hindus, and evangelicals are all theists, but you'd be hard pressed to find any agreement between them on any of God's characteristics. These characters don't agree on anything except that God exists.

Jim in St Louis said...


Alexandra Diana Elizabeth Mary Cambridge

St. George said...

Another thing to know....that new Avengers movie?

A bomb.

2:30 of boredom, endless fights...and more boredom.

Avoid at all costs.

Gabriel said...

@clint:Atheism isn't so much a religious belief as a category of religious belief.

Not ordering pie is ordering a kind of pie.

Deists, devout Catholics, devout Hindus, and evangelicals are all theists, but you'd be hard pressed to find any agreement between them on any of God's characteristics. These characters don't agree on anything except that God exists.

Deists order key lime, Catholics order apple, Hindus order pecan. All their pies are different fillings, all they have in common is a crust. Therefore not ordering pie is kind of ordering pie.

LilyBart said...

Charlotte Elizabeth Diana

She was named after William's father, Charles. My least favorite royal.

Yuck

Rusty said...

Eleanor said...
Atheism isn't a religious belief.


Why not? Since both religion and atheism are anchored in faith.

Original Mike said...

"Why not? Since both religion and atheism are anchored in faith."

I don't get the supposed symmetry between the two (theism and atheism). Religion is the belief in something for which there is no evidence (hence the need for "faith"). Atheism is not believing in something for which there is no evidence. Doesn't seem to be the same thing to me.

Gabriel said...

@Rusty:Since both religion and atheism are anchored in faith.

A slice of pie is served on a pie plate. An empty pie plate also has a pie plate. Therefore no-pie is a kind of pie.