Ghostless Machine

Overcoming polarization with philosophy

Hi, I’m Ariel Pontes and this is my blog, where I write about atheism, philosophy, science, and sociopolitical issues. I have an MA in analytic philosophy and I am active in several secular-humanist organizations in Brazil, Romania, and at the international level. Read more →

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Latest posts

Differences between Brazil and Romania

Differences between Brazil and Romania

Ariel PontesJune 7, 20151 min read

Everyone who has a blog and lives abroad for a while has a post like this, so I thought it was about time to write my own. It should be…

The tragic consequences of biological determinism

The tragic consequences of biological determinism

Ariel PontesMay 8, 20151 min read

There probably are biological differences between groups of people, but the moral cost of making the wrong assumptions should keep us skeptic. Read More »The tragic consequences of biological determinism

Why do Brazilians refuse to speak English?

Why do Brazilians refuse to speak English?

Ariel PontesMay 2, 20151 min read

I have always noticed that Brazilians have a certain aversion to English. A certain tendency to switch to Portuguese whenever the majority is Brazilian, a severe reluctance to make a…

Everyday hate speech in Romania

Everyday hate speech in Romania

Ariel PontesMarch 6, 20151 min read

In Romania it’s common for people to condemn the accent from other regions without any pudency. And many don’t do it jokingly, they really mean it. They call people with…

Is freedom of speech really the issue?

Is freedom of speech really the issue?

Ariel PontesJanuary 13, 20151 min read

Worse than hearing bad arguments from your opposer is hearing bad arguments from people on your side. And of course it shouldn’t surprise anyone that, after a hideous international event,…

Slaves to the DNA?

Slaves to the DNA?

Ariel PontesDecember 26, 20141 min read

Since its discovery in the early 20th century, the DNA has become a huge center of attention in biology. It has sparked new interest in the field of genetics, become basic knowledge…

National Day

National Day

Ariel PontesDecember 15, 20141 min read

On the first day of this month, Romanians celebrated their “National Day”, the day Transylvania united with the rest of the country. According to the state-owned national channel TVR1, it…

Atheism is becoming politically incorrect and we have to stop it

Atheism is becoming politically incorrect and we have to stop it

Ariel PontesNovember 9, 20141 min read

The atheist movement has seen a somewhat recent boom. Some say it was triggered by the 9/11 attacks and call it the “New Atheism” movement. There are many great things…

Intellectuality in Brazil

Intellectuality in Brazil

Ariel PontesJune 25, 20141 min read

Intellectual. Is this a positive or a negative attribute? Asked in such a direct manner, I thought it would be difficult to ever get a negative answer. But surprisingly, most…