Obvious scam is obvious: Dinesh D’Souza

So, Dinesh D’Souza is speaking at OU tonight. Or this afternoon. Or whatever.

I couldnt help but notice not only how D’Souza is defined by his ‘enemies’, but that D’Souza defines himself by his ‘enemies’:

The God Decision: Delusion, Confusion or Truth?
The “New Atheism” is an increasingly popular worldview promoted by well-known intellectuals including, Sir Richard Dawkins (who spoke at O.U. in March 2009), Christopher Hitchens, Dr. Daniel Dennett and Sam Harris — the so-called “Four Horsemen of the New Atheism.” This belief system is essentially an embrace of scientific and philosophical Naturalism and a rejection of widespread Christian thought and theism that has existed in North America for 400 years.

Richard Dawkins book, ‘The God Delusion’ was an important and popular work. Because Im spoofing that title, I too must be important and popular. Richard Dawkins spoke at OU. Im speaking at OU, therefore, I must be as important as Richard Dawkins. Here is a list of several more influential people. I must also be influential.

Hmm– Richard Dawkins also spoke for free (in a much larger venue, btw).

He also donated $5000 to Oklahomans for Excellence in Science Education.

Im sure D’Souza will also waive his speaking fee for “Bott Radio Network Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Family Policy Council, The Wilberforce Initiative and the Catholic Archdiocese of Oklahoma City”, and donating $5000 to a local educational non-profit, too? Right?

Or, is this just a big fucking scam?

Those sleezy organizations beg their followers for $$$$, and then instead of doing good for humanity with that $$$$, they turn around and give $$$ to charlatans like D’Souza. D’Souza gives a little ‘battle’ talk to fire up the followers against ‘TEH FOOR HOARSHMOON!’ to get them to give more $$$$$ to the sleezy organizations.

Its a big fucking obvious scam.

I know they do this. Fine, fine Christians scamming other Christians. I will never forget my very first encounter with a real, live, professional Creationist. A YEC named Brad Harrub, who damn well knew AND acknowledged that some of the ‘Evidences of Creation’ he was presenting (this stupid fucking fishing reel in a rock) was a fraud, but presented it to The Flock anyway. And then, when I told on him to Teh Elders, they didnt do jack squat. They werent offended that they got scammed by a ‘fellow Christian’. They were fucking in on it. They have been bringing him back to the church year after year after year. Cause they didnt care jack shit about evolution or creationism. They care about getting asses in the seats. Asses with wallets.

Same damn shit.

Fucking con artists.

Also– Please note that no Oklahoma State legislators have attempted to ban D’Souza from the state, nor have they launched any investigations on the groups that invited him to campus. Weird, huh? Poor, poor persecuted Christians.

Comments

  1. #1 Jared
    December 1, 2010

    Well, it’s a scam that the victims are still oblivious to.

  2. #2 Sili
    December 1, 2010

    Sir Dick-to-the-Dawk? Since when?

    I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised to learn that he’s a an outright republican.

    He doesn’t appear to have even an MBE, much less a knighthood. Is D’Useless projecting his own desires upon Dawkypoo, or is he trying to tar him a British elitist to the Oklahoman rubes?

  3. #3 Prometheus
    December 1, 2010

    “Sir Richard Dawkins”

    Huh?

    Since when does the head of the Anglican church knight Gnus.

    HRH has, to my knowledge, never given an outspoken atheist so much as an OBE, and she hands those out to “Third best pig breeder in Essex” or “biggest nose in Bassing on the Basin”.

    Did I miss Richard’s visit to Mrs. Mountbatten’s cottage or is D’Souza elevating Dawkins in the hopes some German hemophiliac will induct him into the Order of the Stoat and the Ear?

  4. #4 Eddie Janssen
    December 1, 2010

    Probably maybe confusing Dawkins and Attenborough?

  5. #5 vhutchison
    December 1, 2010

    I will practice mental hygiene and not attend the talk.

  6. #6 Sam Barnett-Cormack
    December 1, 2010

    So, they pay speakers like this as, effectively, a form of fundraising? It costs them money, but they expect to make more out of it in the end? Using known false arguments (to take the example you mention from your own experience)? That’s insane. As in criminally. Or at least it should be.

  7. #7 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    Um, dang.
    in a much larger venue, btw.

    Because, as we all know, popularity = truth.

    charlatans like D’Souza

    Did you know he thinks Darwinian evolution happened?
    So, your knickers are all in a twist b/c the man believes in God and doesn’t pander to Dick Dawk every chance he gets? Just whom won’t you throw to the wolves?

    I think this little rant exposes something I’ve suspected from a while back – you blog about these moralistic things that have nothing to do with science or your research b/c you have an emotional investment in them. You make moral judgments b/c you think you’re in the right, and they’re so often misguided b/c your emotion clouds you to the mistakes you’re making. That makes me think part of the reason you are the way you are is b/c you had a bad experience with some Christians or so-called Christians in the past.
    I know that you probably feel a gratifying release in venting your frustrations, but it’s strange that you’re oblivious to the way in which you so radically depart from the fact that this is SCIENCEblogs when you blarg your hate of Jesus all over teh w3bz.

    Watch this – I’ll demonstrate. You said:
    They care about getting asses in the seats. Asses with wallets.

    And yet you offer no, nor can you offer any, moral justification for making these judgments. You might appeal to empathy (argumentum ad populum), you might appeal to evolutionary ethics (question-begging, committing the naturalistic fallacy), you might make no attempt and just keep on whining like Christopher Hitchens, but the thinking reader sees past that to the screaming child who wants to be God.

    Please note that no Oklahoma State legislators have attempted to ban D’Souza from the state, nor have they launched any investigations on the groups that invited him to campus.

    If he’d ever written a book as irrational and moronic as The God Delusion, there’s a better chance such investigations would’ve taken place.

    Peace,
    Rhology

  8. #8 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    he’d ever written a book as irrational and moronic as The God Delusion

    Oh, and accused people who raise their kids in the fear of God of being child-abusers. That too.

  9. #9 BGT
    December 1, 2010

    But Rhology, isn’t Christianity the most popular religion in the US?

  10. #10 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    I’d argue secularised moralistic therapeutic deism is, actually. Why?

  11. #11 BGT
    December 1, 2010

    I can’t see how your particular definition of Christianity would be useful for discussing Christianity in American culture. Too much “No True Scotsman” wiggle room.

  12. #12 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    Kinda like Sam Harris’ “no true atheist would do ___”, no? OK.

  13. #13 BGT
    December 1, 2010

    Sorry, I haven’t bothered to read Harris. Is there some soul shattering revelation that I have missed?

  14. #14 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    Nothing about Harris is soul-shattering, nor particularly a revelation. I was just saying that if such is true of Christianity (and you didn’t explain yourself, so I don’t really know what you mean), the same is true of naturalistic atheism.

  15. #15 Prometheus
    December 1, 2010

    Rho blathered at some number or other..

    “You might appeal to empathy (argumentum ad populum)”

    Ugh.

    No.

    Empathy is the basis of the appeal to pity a.k.a. The Galileo Argument.

    Argumentum ad populum is an ad numerum fallacy.

    Jesus wants you to audit an intro to logic class.

  16. #16 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    Argumentum ad populum is an ad numerum fallacy.

    Um, which is why I was obviously ridiculing it before someone could throw it out there. Jesus wants you to bone up on your reading comprehension.

  17. #17 Prometheus
    December 1, 2010

    “You see my being utterly wrong was merely a clever ruse I was actually…..”

    nope.

    Not buying it.

    Kinda casts a shadow over your description of Erv as a petulant child.

  18. #18 buggypig
    December 1, 2010

    “people who raise their kids in the fear of God”

    Doesn’t that just say it all? It’s good to raise your kids to FEAR isn’t it?

  19. #19 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    Prometheus read me wrong, but can’t bring himself to admit it. That makes 2 petulant children.

    buggypig,
    “See that wild boar over there, little Johnny? Go beat it up!”

  20. #20 buggypig
    December 1, 2010

    “See that wild boar over there, little Johnny? Go beat it up!”

    Ah, so god is a pig, is he? That’s why they have to fear god.

  21. #21 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    LOL & *facepalm* @buggypig

  22. #22 buggypig
    December 1, 2010

    What is good about teaching kids to FEAR the sky pixie?

  23. #23 buggypig
    December 1, 2010

    By the way, love the LOL and facepalm bit. Nice to see you’re down with the kids. Rock on.

  24. #24 Sili
    December 1, 2010

    Did you know he thinks Darwinian evolution happened?

    And? Blind chickens may also find the grain.

    Anyway, noöne claims that knowing that accepting the Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection is a surefire way to not be a charlatan.

  25. #25 Rhology
    December 1, 2010

    buggypig,
    What’s good about teaching kids to fear fire? And wild boars? Answer that and you’ll have reason enough why the child abuse accusation is just silly. And I facepalmed b/c what you said was really, really stupid, just FYI.

  26. #26 buggypig
    December 1, 2010

    So fearing god is like fearing fire and wild boars?

    And you think I said something really, really stupid.

  27. #27 Chayanov
    December 1, 2010

    Fire, wild boars, and God.

    One of these things is not like the others.

  28. #28 Prometheus
    December 1, 2010

    “Prometheus read me wrong, but can’t bring himself to admit it.”

    I admit reading you is wrong.

    Feel better?

  29. #29 ERV
    December 1, 2010

    Season finale of ANTM is tonight. I cant imagine they will have more than a dozen people or so show up for this. Extremely poor planning.
    :P

  30. #30 CJ
    December 1, 2010
  31. #31 Tommykey
    December 1, 2010

    That makes me think part of the reason you are the way you are is b/c you had a bad experience with some Christians or so-called Christians in the past.

    See what effect you had on her! LOL! :-)

  32. #32 vhutchison
    December 1, 2010

    Anyone have an estimate of attendance? Comments on Q and A?

  33. #33 Sam C
    December 2, 2010

    Rhology bullshits:

    They care about getting asses in the seats. Asses with wallets.

    And yet you offer no, nor can you offer any, moral justification for making these judgments.

    God, please make a Christian with a functioning brain!! There are zillions of revolting Christian television channels exhorting the weak-minded to send them money in support of their indoctrination campaigns.

    The roll-call of fraudulent money-grabbing preachers is long and distinguished. D’Souza is undoubtedly one of these. It’s better than getting a real job!

    You bought this bullshit; that makes you a gullible sucker, not a discerning sage.

    Rhology, stop trying to be clever and go and play nicely with your bricks.

  34. #34 baldywilson
    December 2, 2010

    HRH has, to my knowledge, never given an outspoken atheist so much as an OBE, and she hands those out to “Third best pig breeder in Essex” or “biggest nose in Bassing on the Basin”.

    Dawkins may not have a knighthood, but Salman Rushdie does (for services to literature). And just for the record: the Queen does not decide who gets a knighthood, the government does. The Queen’s role in the process is largely ceremonial.

  35. #35 Dawn
    December 2, 2010

    @Prometheus: a little nitpick because I respect your accuracy but the Queen is HM, not HRH. (Her Majesty, not Her Royal Highness). HRH is reserved for those who aren’t the reigning monarch(s).

    Rho: I was a lifelong christian until, sitting in church one Easter Sunday, I said to myself, “I don’t believe in this crap any longer”. Guess you’d just say I wasn’t a True Christian, right? The Bible is a nice book of stories, but I believe in it as factual about as much as I believe that The Iliad is true.

    If you accept evolution, which I always did (even as a True Christian), then Adam, Eve, and the need for Christ to die for us is all bunk.

    And when you read other culture’s stories, you realize that they often have a common thread – everyone has a “risen from the dead” story (the Egyptians were a lot earlier than Christ), a “creation” story (I love the Nordic version, personally), and a downfall of mankind (Pandora, anyone?) story.

    And D’Souza is full of bunk, too. I’ve read some of his stuff and listened to him. He’s no different than the “Make Friends and Influence People” gurus of my girlhood.

  36. #36 Rhology
    December 2, 2010

    @Dawn #35
    I was a lifelong christian until, sitting in church one Easter Sunday, I said to myself, “I don’t believe in this crap any longer

    Actually, me too. I was an atheist for 3 years. Then I met Jesus for real.

    Guess you’d just say I wasn’t a True Christian, right?

    No idea, but that’d be my guess, yes.

    If you accept evolution, which I always did (even as a True Christian), then Adam, Eve, and the need for Christ to die for us is all bunk.

    Yep. Which is why I’m not a huge D’Souza fan. He has his uses, I guess, but in no area does he have my unmitigated support.

    everyone has a “risen from the dead” story

    Could that be b/c God put that hope and foreshadowing in the heart of every person? The realisation that death is an enemy, against which we hope for a redeeming victor to help us?

    a “creation” story and a downfall story

    Maybe b/c the creation and downfall occurred and these histories were (albeit imperfectly) passed down?

  37. #37 D4M10N
    December 2, 2010

    ERV – I’m always surprised when brilliant women with scientific minds get a kick out of watching reality television featuring women lauded and displayed for their physical attributes and prowess. I really shouldn’t be at that surprised, because I live with one of them. OTOH… I really enjoy watching football, which plays to an idealized conception of masculinity at least as deranged and Neolithic as the model of femininity modeled by the models.
    So, anyway, D’Souza totally rocked the house last night. He introduced at least a couple hundred devout churchgoers (many of whom doubtless lead philosophically insulated lives) to at least three major atheist arguments, countered these arguments with obvious fallacies and non-sequiturs, and went on to encourage everyone to get online and watch him debate atheists. If you’ve seen just about any of his debates, you must agree that he is performing a service to freethought. I’d not be entirely shocked to learn that he’s a double agent, getting paid under the table by the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science.

  38. #38 Mobius
    December 2, 2010

    This belief system (Christianity) is essentially an embrace of mysticism and supernaturalism and a rejection of widespread Native American thought that has existed in North America for more than 10,000 years.

    So there, D’Souza.

  39. #39 derwood
    December 2, 2010

    D’Souza looks a bit foreign to me, I think he fits the profile for a possible terrorist and should be put on the no-fly list. I’d also like ot see his original birth certificate.

  40. #40 Dawn
    December 2, 2010

    No, Rho, I’d have to say you were no “True Atheist” because no real atheist would then meet Jesus (actually, I know Jesus; he sits at the desk across from me. Young, cute guy, too bad we’re both married.)

    However, I don’t believe in some guy who supposedly lived 2000 years ago, nor do I believe in a god. ANY god – Yahweh, Zeus, Odin, any of them. Nor do I accept the new age crap D’Souza spouts.

    I can’t reconcile the stories in the bible with any contemporary information so, as we say in nursing, “if it wasn’t written, it wasn’t done”. And we mean at the time, not decades later. No known contemporary information matches the gospel stories, so no, I don’t believe. I’d rather use my brain and think.

  41. #41 stogoe
    December 2, 2010

    Could that be b/c God put that hope and foreshadowing in the heart of every person?

    [bats troll with sniny claws] Rho, how can you be sure that Horus/Mithras/Odysseus were all just foreshadowings, and the Jesus incarnation of the story is the really really real 100 percent actual true one? Isn’t it equally as likely that it was the Horus story that was the real one, and the one that changed his name to Jesus is just an inferior, non-Joss-Whedon reboot?

    In short, what if you picked the wrong Gods, and each week that you pray at your Christian temple you’re just making Ra madder and madder?

    But no, you were born into a culture where the dominant vampire stories involve a sparkly vampire named Edward Cullen, and any other vampire stories that came before involving Dracula, Nosferatu, and Angelus were just Foreshadowing for the One True Vampire series.

  42. #42 Prometheus
    December 2, 2010

    Sorry to have inadvertently demoted the sovereign.

    As for Rushdie Knight Bachelor

    Salman Rushdie has used the word atheist just twice to describe himself and always in the past tense with a lot of caveat. These days he is a Cultural Muslim or a secular member of the Islamic Diaspora ….whatever that means.

    baldywilson@#34

    “And just for the record: the Queen does not decide who gets a knighthood, the government does. The Queen’s role in the process is largely ceremonial.”

    Sorta.

    All five ranks of the RVO are awarded without “ministerial advice”.

    The list is prepared by the Honours and Appointments Secretariat but they are “sorted out” by the Prime Minister and the Palace before they are considered for publication by the Palace and the prime minister…:p.

    There was a big show about “Reforming the Honours” about five years ago led by Prince Charles’ best buddy Hayden Phillips. It was really a tactic by Prince Phillip who was screaming about the list being “too bloody long”. His way of saying, “Who are all these brown people and why are they bothering my Mrs.!”

    Rushdie’s knighthood was arguably the weirdest investiture since James I started calling the Duke of Buckingham his wife.

    Jack Straw says nasty thing about radical Islam, Rushdie very publicly agrees with nasty thing, Lord Rothschild nominates and a bizarre “private investiture” is held to give Salman a lower rank order than Captain Picard.

    The British Labour party loves gaming the Honours list to reward loyalty payback donations and in Rushdie’s case, thumb their noses at radical Muslims.

    Wanna be a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire? It is yours for a loan to Labour of $250,000.

  43. #43 MadScientist
    December 2, 2010

    We don’t want no steenking A-ca-demics!

    Who needs an education? Look at those stupid physicists, biologists, and chemists – working all day to achieve so little when they could be touring and giving bullshit talks and really raking in the money.

    Why would you want to be an Einstein when you can be an Oprah?

    Anyone know why the ignoramuses have such contempt for intelligent folks?

  44. #44 Rhology
    December 2, 2010

    @stogoe #41,

    how can you be sure that Horus/Mithras/Odysseus were all just foreshadowings, and the Jesus incarnation of the story is the really really real 100 percent actual true one?

    Haha, b/c I’ve apparently looked into the matter in more depth than you have.

  45. #45 sadpanda
    December 2, 2010

    Salman Rushdie has used the word atheist just twice to describe himself and always in the past tense with a lot of caveat. These days he is a Cultural Muslim or a secular member of the Islamic Diaspora ….whatever that means.

    Nope, he’s still an atheist, from a recent Q&A for his new book: http://fora.tv/2010/11/17/Salman_Rushdie_Luka_and_the_Fire_of_Life

    These are stock queries, though. Rushdie’s best moment was his answer to a unique and ungainly run-on sentence phrased in the form of a question, of which my mock-quote here is barely an exaggeration:

    You talk about poetry, but you are a poet, you tell the truth but–you have a slant, and you are, the anti-religion, and I was wondering if you could here compose, improvise, a couplet, in which you propose your own religion, your own slant, just a couple lines in which you can give us your….

    “That’s a wonderful question.” Rushdie deadpanned.

    “The problem is that I have no religion. But that’s not the problem, that’s the solution, is to have no religion. So my religious couplet would be two lines, without any words.” A fine performance from the man who told Christopher Hitchens that the title of God is Not Great was exactly one word too long.

    Quote from: http://benjamintheass.blogspot.com/2010/11/most-excellent-fancy.html

  46. #46 Dawn
    December 3, 2010

    @Rho:

    Haha, b/c I’ve apparently looked into the matter in more depth than you have.

    What? You mean you have ACTUAL PROOF that no one else in the entire world has seen that proves that YOUR god is the one, the only, the real deal? And you’ve never shown this proof to anyone? Geez, how selfish of you.

    Note, however, I am looking for actual proof, and the bible doesn’t count. Show me (links or just names) contemporary information that proves it true. Just think of how famous you will be, the guy who got Richard Dawkins to admit he was wrong! Why, you’ll be more famous than D’Sousa!

  47. #47 Rhology
    December 3, 2010

    @Dawn #46,

    You’re asking the wrong question. I don’t deal in proof of something that is a necessary ground for reasoning. You either believe it and confess it, or you refuse to and you look silly because you end up inconsistent.

    Tell you what: You want to talk about this, that’s cool. But not here. For one thing, it’d derail the combox. For another, if you’re an intellectually honest interlocutor, you’re one of the few that hang around this blog. Read this, email me, and we can set up a discussion at my blog. I never moderate it, so you’d have no fear of “homefield advantage”.

    Peace,
    Rhology

  48. #48 Prometheus
    December 3, 2010

    sadpanda@#45

    “Nope, he’s still an atheist, from a recent Q&A for his new book:”

    Sure he is, but he is no Gnu.

    That is a discussion of religion not belief,

    I know he’s an atheist, Hitchens knows he is an atheist and he knows he is an atheist but his public statements, by design, don’t go beyond an off-the-shelf secularism .

    A lot of people who believe in gods or an afterlife reject religion.

    Rho@#44

    “Haha, b/c I’ve apparently looked into the matter in more depth than you have.”

    Haha, more depth.

  49. #49 Dawn
    December 3, 2010

    I’ll look at your link later and let you know what I think on your blog, Rho. It’s blocked here and I have a busy weekend ahead but I will try to let you know before next week.

  50. #50 stogoe
    December 3, 2010

    I don’t deal in proof of something that is a necessary ground for reasoning. You either believe it and confess it, or you refuse to and you look silly because you end up inconsistent.

    Anyone who isn’t Rho, what does this even mean?

  51. #51 Tommykey
    December 3, 2010

    Stogoe, I will do my best to interpret for you.

    Rho believes that the Bible is the word of god and true and that therefore any so-called scientific evidence that conflicts with a literal interpretation of the Bible can be ignored or dismissed because we should trust the word of god instead of our own observations. For example, just because Africa and South America are presently moving apart about an inch a year (or whatever the minute distance it is) nobody was measuring these things 4,000 years ago so how do you know they didn’t move apart hundreds of miles per year back then so that it all fits into his YEC timeline?

  52. #52 Lee Harrison
    December 4, 2010

    If you follow his links, you’ll discover that Rho is actually stupid enough to accept the transcendental argument for the existence of God – one of the most truly stupid attempts to define god into being since St Anselm spouted his crap in a public forum…

    More info available here: http://carm.org/transcendental-argument

    and refutations available here: http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/michael_martin/

    (Sorry – drank too much to remember how to do hyperlinks…)

  53. #53 Lee Harrison
    December 4, 2010

    Cool! Sciblogs does hyperlinks for me. Awesome.

  54. #54 Tommykey
    December 5, 2010

    I was a lifelong christian until, sitting in church one Easter Sunday, I said to myself, “I don’t believe in this crap any longer”.

    Dawn, that’s a lot like what happened to me. I was raised Catholic, and went through the motions as a kid because my dad made me go, but during my high school years I took it seriously and really committed myself to it.

    But when I hit college age, I started having serious doubts, about Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular. I went to church on Easter Sunday in 1988 after having been absent for a while to see if I could reignite my faith, but instead, I felt completely disconnected. I didn’t leap immediately into atheism though. For awhile, I maintained a personal god belief that was independent of any organized religion, until the time came when even that no longer worked for me either. I eventually came to the conclusion that “Hey, I am an atheist.” I don’t even remember exactly when it was, that’s how anti-climactic it was for me.

  55. #55 Tommykey
    December 5, 2010

    Lee, I don’t think it’s fair to deride Rho as stupid. Judging him only by what he writes, he strikes me as intelligent, though he has a certain arrogance which perhaps is part and parcel of identifying oneself so zealously with a faith that one is doing god’s work. Being a New Yawker, I’ve never met him in person, unlike our esteemed hostess and some of the regular commenters here who live in OK, so they are in a better position than I am to have a more complete picture of him.

  56. #56 Mind Over Splatter
    December 6, 2010

    “Fucking con artists.”

    Yep, Thank you ERV!

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