Pharyngula

I’m in good company

The Christian Anti-Defamation Commission is angry.

It is time for the Christian bashing to stop and for Christians to no longer be treated like second-class citizens.

Second-class citizens who are virtually the only people who can get elected to political office, who whine piteously if anyone fails to kneel before their sacraments, who also claim that this is a Christian nation, who use their faith to justify war, corruption, oppression, greed, and who use their privileged position to deny non-Christians basic rights. Yeah, right. They’re a gang of hypocritical thugs with a persecution complex. It it time for Christian bashing to increase, I should think.

Now they’ve compiled a top ten list of Christian bashing in America for 2008, and oh, it is a pathetic thing. It is largely a list of people who mocked Christian excess: first on the list is the Proposition 8 Musical, starring Jack Black as Jesus. Bill Maher gets mentioned twice. I am in there for throwing a cracker in the trash. A sports announcer used obscenities. Come on, where are the lions? There aren’t any.

Most ridiculous of all, they have to invent slurs. Apparently, Barack Obama’s very existence is an example of Christian bashing.

According to research into President Elect Obama’s own statements about faith, and an examination of Obama’s position on moral issues, CADC has determined that by any biblical and historic Christian standard, Barack Obama is not a Christian, although he claims he is a “devout Christian.”

That’s it. Because they’ve redefined Obama’s beliefs as non-Christian, the fact that he holds those beliefs constitutes a defamation of Christianity. Poor pitiful CADC.

Comments

  1. #1 Lago
    January 6, 2009

    I am freakin’ sick of these people ability to look at the true stats of the world, and rewrite the weights of these same stats.

    Most people thinks atheists are scum and can say so openly, and without fear of retaliation, but someone points out the Christian religious bias to people not like they, or their indefensible actions? Then it, “Christian bashing!!!…How dare they!!!???”

    I need to go back to sleep..

  2. #2 Krikkit One
    January 6, 2009

    They managed to spell it M-e-y-e-r-apostrophe-s? I’m impressed.

  3. #3 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 6, 2009

    I know picking on typos is far from anything I should be doing, but… damn

    A Biology Professor from the University of Minnesota, Paul Zachary Myers, recently desecrated a consecrated communion wafer from a Catholic Mass. Meyer’s has also asked people to steal the Eucharist for him in order that he might desecrate it and display it on his blog.

    You got the name right once, what happened?

  4. #4 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Rev., consistency from the deluded would be nice. But, in my experience, very unlikely to happen. My guess, one is cut/paste, and the other was their idea of PZ’s name is spelled.

  5. #5 Kobra
    January 6, 2009

    A Biology Professor from the University of Minnesota, Paul Zachary Myers, recently desecrated a consecrated communion wafer from a Catholic Mass. Meyer’s has also asked people to steal the Eucharist for him in order that he might desecrate it and display it on his blog.

    FAIL

  6. #6 Rob Clack
    January 6, 2009

    Shame you only made #7. Must try harder!

  7. #7 slang
    January 6, 2009

    What’s the next devastating attack? “A man in New York walked past a religious billboard… and he looked the other way!” Silly crybabies.

  8. #8 Archaneus
    January 6, 2009

    You know, as much as I know enforcing a ban of religion doesn’t work, sometimes it’s really a tempting idea…

  9. #9 Donnie B.
    January 6, 2009

    Rev BDC said: “You got the name right once, what happened?”

    Perhaps they burned out their last functional brain cell getting the spelling right the first time.

  10. #10 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Wow, that list is a real lol of minor complaints. If they saw Jesus up on that cross they’d be saying “that jew suffers nothing compared what we have to go through”

  11. #11 Mena
    January 6, 2009

    Second class citizens? Maybe we should put christian rights on a ballot somewhere and vote on whether or not their legal marriages should be dissolved.

  12. #12 Sioux Laris
    January 6, 2009

    While I can forgive them for their misguided attempts to do evil – out of misplaced and irrational fears and misguided attempts to gain power – to people like myself, I will not be giving the proverbial inch to them on any issue, in any way, ever.

    People like this are so entirely in the wrong – by which I mean they are working against their own happiness as well as others – that, until they show they slimmest thread of humanity in either action or word, they can be opposed without internal debate: they are not only insane but uncreative in their insanity.

    Without resorting to violence – a habit most of them are uncomfortable with unless masked in uniformed “patriotism” – they will lose. And they be all the better, especially in their own eyes, for having lost.

  13. #13 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 6, 2009

    What always hits me with these types of temper tantrums is that is really shows what a lack of confidence and dare I say faith that they have in their God. If their God is as powerful as they claim he is you’d think that he could take care of himself or at least not care about these things.

  14. #14 Cuttlefish, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Well, I, for one, am duly pissed!
    (…I didn’t even make the list!)

  15. #15 Kobra
    January 6, 2009

    @14: Succinct. :D

  16. #16 Kobra
    January 6, 2009

    I deserve to be on the list. I mean, my website banner features me stabbing Jesus in the throat with a fucking katana!

  17. #17 Vole
    January 6, 2009

    Instance #4 is a magnificent piece of doublethink.

  18. #18 Richard Harris
    January 6, 2009

    It’s blindingly obvious that religions have evolved from primitive mythologies, or crazy delusions, or cons.

    Anyone who believes in stupid nonsense, such as Christianity, is therefore either stupid, crazy, or brainwashed.

  19. #19 RM
    January 6, 2009

    “What always hits me with these types of temper tantrums is that is really shows what a lack of confidence and dare I say faith that they have in their God. If their God is as powerful as they claim he is you’d think that he could take care of himself or at least not care about these things.”

    They’ve prayed so many times for Jebus to take care of their enemies with no action taken on their behalf.

  20. #20 Richard Harris
    January 6, 2009

    Oh, I missed out, ignorant.

  21. #21 Kobra
    January 6, 2009

    I have an idea: Let’s all inundate this group with requests to be included on the list to mock the intent behind the list.

    Sent to newsdesk@christiannewswire.com:

    Re: http://www.christiannewswire.com/news/437499077.html

    I believe I deserve a spot on this list. My website banner features me stabbing Christ in the throat with a katana, for crying out loud. That’s way more hardcore anti-xtian than “Prop 8 the Musical.”

    My signature, of course, contains the URL to Kobra’s Corner. :P

  22. #22 Todd
    January 6, 2009

    I SO want to get on that list.

  23. #23 The Petey
    January 6, 2009

    ya know, I bet a list of 10 things done against other groups would only earn derision from these people. They whine about these so-called bouts of bashing but glory in their accomplishment of barring gay from the CIVIL right of marriage.

    yeah – I have SOO much pity for them.

  24. #24 Kobra
    January 6, 2009

    @22: You, me, and Cuttlefish, too. :P

    contact@christianadc.org – Use this email address to request inclusion.

  25. #25 Enzyme
    January 6, 2009

    One minor, pettifogging point: you talk about Christians “who use their faith to justify war, corruption, oppression, greed…”

    They don’t. They use their faith to DEFEND them, and to attempt a justification. But the defence and the attempt both fail.

    You’re giving ‘em too much credit…

  26. #26 Mike in Ontario, NY
    January 6, 2009

    “CADC has determined that by any biblical and historic Christian standard, Barack Obama is not a Christian”

    I think they mean “hysteric” Christian standard.

  27. #27 Somnolent Aphid
    January 6, 2009

    Part of their script is that they need to feel persecuted. Must be hard holding all the power in this country and to not be well liked.

  28. #28 Tualha
    January 6, 2009

    The one I love is where they’re complaining about pro-Proposition 8 signs being stolen and people being assaulted for their beliefs. Because of course we all know that good Christians would never treat atheists that way.

  29. #29 Andrés Diplotti
    January 6, 2009

    “It is time for the Roman bashing to stop and for Romans to no longer be treated like second-class citizens,” said Gaius Severus Censor. “Those gods-less Christians have gone too far. Take for example that execrable piece of hate-mongering: ‘Throw Them to The Lions! The Musical’.”

  30. #30 j.t.delaney
    January 6, 2009

    Next to the Jack Black reference, I think my favorite from the list is #4, where they think the bible has been banned in Colorado by some recent anti-discrimination legislation(see: http://www.leg.state.co.us/CLICS/CLICS2008A/csl.nsf/fsbillcont3/BD7A295EB6F4460E872573F5005D0148?Open&file=200_01.pdf .) You see, by not allowing them to persecute others in their down=home folksy old fashioned ways, they are the ones being persecuted!

    “Why Lord, why?!”

  31. #31 black wolf
    January 6, 2009

    We need time machines. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could send delegations of these o-so-persecuted and bashed groups to say, ancient Rome (provided the historical accounts are true) or maybe to the nazi Deutsche Kirche Germany? Just to show them what real ‘Christian bashing’ looks like.
    Dear Christians, a hint: when you try to enter your church on Sunday and find it barred by uniformed men who are busy nailing a Swastika over the door, then come back and complain. When your cousin doesn’t return from the supermarket because someone has decided he serves a better purpose entertaining the masses running from wild animals in Madison Square Garden, then you have a reason to complain.
    It’s the top leadership of Christianity who goes out on television and calls nonbelievers mentally deficient and accuses anybody-but-themselves of being responsible for anything from Katrina to Columbine. And they are the ones being bashed – yeah right.

  32. #32 Shaden Freud
    January 6, 2009

    INSTANCE #2: Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin Is Attacked
    Alaska Governor, Sarah Palin, came under sharp attack by some in the mainstream media because she self-identifies as a Christian.

    Wait, what? All four candidates on both tickets self-identify as Christians!

  33. #33 Kobra
    January 6, 2009

    @31: Yeah, but she was a True Believer

  34. #34 alex
    January 6, 2009

    o, the terrible cross they must bear.

  35. #35 Karinna
    January 6, 2009

    I can’t believe they paid any attention to you.

  36. #36 CS
    January 6, 2009

    How about this:

    “BONUS INSTANCE: Senator Grassley’s Abuse of Power

    US Senator Grassley, a member of the powerful Senate Finance Committee, has demanded the financial records of a number of very prominent conservative, evangelical broadcast ministries. The demand was based on Grassley’s concern that these ministries are not spending their contributions properly. Grassley has admitted his concerns were in part driven by media accounts.”

  37. #37 black wolf
    January 6, 2009

    How did that recently posted cartoon go? “*Bash**Bash**Bash* – Hey, show some respect!”

  38. #38 Schmeer
    January 6, 2009

    Can we actually get some lions? I think that would really move things along. If they are going to wave their persecution complex in my face, I could at least do my part to give them some perspective as to what constitutes persecution.

  39. #39 connecticut man1
    January 6, 2009

    “They whine about these so-called bouts of bashing but glory in their accomplishment of barring gay from the CIVIL right of marriage.”

    It is the lifestyle choice they have made and they expect everyone else to make their same Christianist lifestyle choice. Because the free will that that they claim their God gave them does not extend to everyone else.

    I guess they have overridden what was supposed to be God’s gift of free will with their abominable and sinful lifestyle choice? I am certain that we can cure them of this. Whether it is those damned “God genes” or simply a lifestyle choice… We can cure them all.

    I believe in God (I know Myers and many of you don’t, that is your right, and that this is generally a taboo topic around here) but I really don’t think they believe in God that much. First and foremost, they believe in controlling what others think.

  40. #40 Jeanette
    January 6, 2009

    “INSTANCE #6: Religulous the Movie

    Bill Maher released a very shallow, pseudo-intellectual documentary entitled Religulous. The movie did not cover any new intellectual ground. It simply raised the old attacks on the faith. Maher studiously avoided being fair and did not allow for legitimate Christian answers from any leading Christian intellectuals.”

    Spot the oxymoron.

  41. #41 Kobra
    January 6, 2009

    @39: Which one?
    “legitimate Christian answers” (double: legitimate Christian, Christian answers)

    OR

    Christian intellectuals?

  42. #42 CrypticLife
    January 6, 2009

    Wow, let’s see, off the top of my head for atheist-bashing in 2008 I come up with Libby Dole’s efforts towards political disenfranchisement, Kieffe & Sons advertising that atheists should leave the country, and that crazed councilwoman in Illinois screaming at a testifying atheist that he shouldn’t be allowed near children. Oh, and of course the movie that compares atheists to Nazis.

    If their list of “Christian-bashing” passes as persecution for them, I’d love to see what they think of the ‘atheist-bashing’ list. Hypocrites.

  43. #43 Matt Heath
    January 6, 2009

    Spot the oxymoron.

    I’m declaring zero tolerance on the use of “oxymoron” as a synonym for “contradiction”. It’s only an oxymoron if you are combining apparently contradictory terms on purpose to express a novel idea (like “organized chaos”).

    /curmudgeon

  44. #44 dave
    January 6, 2009

    they’re the ones who treat everybody else like 2nd or 3rd class citizens. unbelievable

  45. #45 Kristinmh
    January 6, 2009

    Their reasons for concludibg Obama’s not Christian:

    1.Doesn’t hate people of other faiths
    2.isn’t a biblical literalist
    3.Is OK with gays
    4.Is OK with abortion
    5.Once praised the sound of the muslim call to prayer as being “pretty” (seriously)
    6.Is “associated” with black liberation theology (or OMG he’s black!!!!1!)
    7.Has no Christian “testimony” – or doesn’t feel compelled to talk constantly about his relationship with Christ

    Their list actually makes me feel better about him. He’s a prettu cool guy. PZ, you ARE in good company.

  46. #46 Kristinmh
    January 6, 2009

    Their reasons for concludibg Obama’s not Christian:

    1.Doesn’t hate people of other faiths
    2.isn’t a biblical literalist
    3.Is OK with gays
    4.Is OK with abortion
    5.Once praised the sound of the muslim call to prayer as being “pretty” (seriously)
    6.Is “associated” with black liberation theology (or OMG he’s black!!!!1!)
    7.Has no Christian “testimony” – or doesn’t feel compelled to talk constantly about his relationship with Christ

    Their list actually makes me feel better about him. He’s a prettu cool guy. PZ, you ARE in good company.

  47. #47 Andrés Diplotti
    January 6, 2009

    Next they’ll be complaining about their lack of religious freedom. Something like:

    “Religious freedom? Don’t make me laugh! If I ever try to persecute infidels and heretics as my religion commands me to do, they’ll throw me in jail! You call that religious freedom? I’m being oppressed, I tell you!”

  48. #48 Billy Sands
    January 6, 2009

    The christian taliban must feel their control slipping

    “A Biology Professor from the University of Minnesota, Paul Zachary Myers, recently desecrated a consecrated communion wafer from a Catholic Mass. Meyer’s has also asked people to steal the Eucharist for him in order that he might desecrate it and display it on his blog.”

    Ever thought of something like the blasphemy challenge where people desecrate crackers in a variety of amusing ways?

  49. #49 geru
    January 6, 2009

    What a great little organization they have.

    So basically what they’re representing is that there’s this arbitrarily chosen group of beliefs, which are so important that no one can ever comment them in any way, or present any views of their own if they happen to be in conflict with theirs, and if they do it’s an act of defamation? Sounds perfectly reasonable.

  50. #50 Craig
    January 6, 2009

    I’m sorry. I read these threads, over and over and read their complaints, their lies, their whining and claims of victimhood, and I always refrain from commenting because there’s only one thing I think of as a response – there’s only one response that fits, only one response they’re worthy of… but it just doesn’t add to the discussion.

    Fuck ‘em. That’s all I got. That’s all I have for them.

    Fuck them.

  51. #51 Midwestern Gent
    January 6, 2009

    “11 Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” Matthew 5:11-12

    The persecution complex is an essential part of their theology. Jebus says if they aren’t being persecuted, they aren’t doing it right. No wonder then that they have to find such petty “persecutions” in a country where they hold all the power and influence.

  52. #52 Mike K
    January 6, 2009

    Didn’t that list make all of you feel happy? First I laughed, and then started smililng because I realized how miserable someone has to be, to complain about minor inconveniences/annoyances like that (to be clear, I’m not smiling because they are miserable, but because I am not).

    How insecure are the people at cadc?

  53. #53 clinteas
    January 6, 2009

    30.000 or more factions of the christian faith in the US,80% of people belonging to any one of them,no chance to get into public office without pandering to them,and they still hang on to their persecution complex,isnt it amazing….

    Point out any fallacy in religious thinking=christian bashing.
    Its an art form they have well and truly perfected.

  54. #54 strangest brew
    January 6, 2009

    Typical xian fantasy working overtime and scraping the barrel to illustrate their hysteria…

    The Senator Grassley’s Abuse of Power gripe is a veritable gem of Christian hypocrisy…

    Do they not want to know where the money goes?…no obviously not because deep down they know that it is spent on more then the expenses incurred preaching the jeebus con…

    Cannot expect god fearing stalwarts of the mythology to only eat drink and travel the way the rest of us do…they need fine cuisine and expensive drink tabs at the out of state lap dance ‘n’ hooters international club and the latest gas guzzler to get there…this preaching is a sore trial to the body…a few home comforts and the odd hooker..is that to much to ask for oh lord? ….then some politically motivated bunny wants to check the books…how inconvenient..it might give Christianity a bad name…cos they won’t understand!

  55. #55 Skeptical Chymist
    January 6, 2009

    Does anyone know the meaning of the term “alter boys” in number 9? Could an alter boy be a boy who has been “altered” by a priest? That’s an interesting way of describing sexual abuse!

  56. #56 Bart Mitchell
    January 6, 2009

    I posted to digg

    http://digg.com/arts_culture/Top_Ten_Instances_of_Christian_Bashing

    Jump in and bash in the new year!

  57. #57 Evolving Squid
    January 6, 2009

    I believe in God (I know Myers and many of you don’t, that is your right, and that this is generally a taboo topic around here) but I really don’t think they believe in God that much. First and foremost, they believe in controlling what others think.

    I don’t believe in God, but I think your assessment of the situation is spot on.

    I know plenty of people with varying degrees of what might be called “faith”. They differ from the people I know who are strongly “religious”.

    The faithful have their god(s) and get on with their life. Unless you ask them about it directly, they don’t usually mention it, although you may see their faith in a religious observance on a special day or whatever.

    The religious, however, are so insecure in their faith that they have to back it up with their persecution complexes, their constant droning about being “slapped in the face” by atheists, gays, pro-choicers, Obama, whatever… and they seek to undo that perceived persecution through legislation and public policy.

    The faithful are, to me, perhaps slightly silly, but generally harmless. The religious are downright scary.

  58. #58 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Seems as if the “Community Organizer” has a Messiah Complex also…..much like Palin & Bush………

    “If you want to change the world, the change has to happen with you first and that is something that the greatest and most honorable of generations has taught us, but the final thing that I think the Moses generation teaches us is to remind ourselves that we do what we do because God is with us. You know, when Moses was first called to lead people out of the Promised Land, he said I don’t think I can do it, Lord. I don’t speak like Reverend Lowery. I don’t feel brave and courageous and the Lord said I will be with you. Throw down that rod. Pick it back up. I’ll show you what to do. The same thing happened with the Joshua generation.”

    “Be strong and have courage, for I am with you wherever you go. We’ve come a long way in this journey, but we still have a long way to travel. We traveled because God was with us.”

    “Thank God, He’s made us in His image and we reject the notion that we will for the rest of our lives be confined to a station of inferiority, that we can’t aspire to the highest of heights, that our talents can’t be expressed to their fullest.”

    “They took them across the sea that folks thought could not be parted. They wandered through a desert but always knowing that God was with them and that, if they maintained that trust in God, that they would be all right.”

    “As great as Moses was, despite all that he did, leading a people out of bondage, he didn’t cross over the river to see the Promised Land. God told him your job is done. You’ll see it. You’ll be at the mountain top and you can see what I’ve promised. What I’ve promised to Abraham and Isaac and Jacob. You will see that I’ve fulfilled that promise but you won’t go there.”

    “Keep in your heart the prayer of that journey, the prayer that God gave to Joshua. Be strong and have courage in the face of injustice.”

    “God Bless You.”

    - Barack Obama
    Selma, Alabama

  59. #59 Snark7
    January 6, 2009

    CADC ? Thats the “Central Atheist Defamation Commission” ?

  60. #60 Anna
    January 6, 2009

    So if a significant percentage of Christians are apparently of the opinion that they have become a second-class majority, who do they think are the first-class citizens?

    Atheists? Gays? Reptilians?

  61. #61 DuckPhup
    January 6, 2009

    Yeah… persecution… 2nd class citizens…

    “I am treated as evil by Christians, who claim that they are being persecuted because they are not allowed to force me to practice what they do.” ~ D. Dale Gulledge

    “It is the position of some theists that their right to freedom OF religion is abridged when they are not allowed to violate the rationalists’ right to freedom FROM religion.” ~ James T. Green

  62. #62 Miguel
    January 6, 2009

    Of all whinging mimophants, xian cultists must be the whiniest.

  63. #63 Snark7
    January 6, 2009

    @black wolf:

    “Dear Christians, a hint: when you try to enter your church on Sunday and find it barred by uniformed men who are busy nailing a Swastika over the door, then come back
    and complain. ”

    Now THAT is rather unlikely. Given the fact that virtually all Nazis were christians.

  64. #64 The Petey
    January 6, 2009

    My take on the gay marriage ban is this…

    If people were going to try and strong arm churches into blessing these unions – I’d be dead set against it. The government has no right to tell a church it needs to marry two people. The fact that 2 people can go before a CIVIL servant and be granted CIVIL rights that cost thousands to have done independently – it is a CIVIL issue.

    I would even support a measure that barred the government from performing any marriages and relegating the word “marriage” strictly to the churches. But then all unions would be civil unions in the eyes of the government. The name changes, tax status, health insurance coverage, all of it would be part of the civil union. The act of the clergy praying over it would be nothing but the blessing – no legal significance at all.

    I don’t think the “religious” would go for this. Because it’s ultimately NOT about protecting marriage, it is about denying the civil rights of marriage to gays.

    And THEY are the persecuted?

  65. #65 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    Can we actually get some lions? I think that would really move things along. If they are going to wave their persecution complex in my face, I could at least do my part to give them some perspective as to what constitutes persecution. – Schmeer

    Sure – but do be careful you have at least as many Christians as lions, or some poor lion will be left without its Christian!

  66. #66 Psychodigger
    January 6, 2009

    Aww, awe the poow wittle chwistians hurt because someone doesn’t agree with them?

    I saw a picture in the newspaper today of one if the Israeli soldiers currently battling it out with the other religious zealots in the Gaza Strip, saying his prayers whilst standing on top of his fucking tank!
    If that image doesn’t encapsulate the extent of the madness, I don’t know what does. But, like many of you rightly pointed out on this and many other occasions, they don’t want to learn, and they don’t want to see the evidence slapping them in the face.

    Fuck ‘em indeed.

  67. #67 Kate
    January 6, 2009

    @Anna #59:

    It’s probably not the Reptilians. I think it would be something closer to: Whoever they think they can target and get away with it. It seems to be easier when they can just lump everyone they hate on any given day into the same category. I would imagine it’s a time saver, since they don’t have to mention any specific group and they can just keep reusing the same old droning crap over and over without the need for time-consuming and costly edits.

  68. #68 Raytheist
    January 6, 2009

    This nonsense is from the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission… so, who commissioned them to this task?

    And their “7 Reasons Why Barack Obama is not a Christian” seems rather defaming to me. (It’s linked from the article PZ linked to) I guess it’s typical to whine about others doing the very thing they are caught doing.

  69. #69 Frank Lovell
    January 6, 2009

    Christians (the majority religion in the USA, with 95+% of the legislature being Christians) feel like “second-class citizens” and want even Bill Maher to muzzle-up???

    Holy shiite! Next thing you know the Christians will be calling for a Holy death Fatwa against any who dare joke about Christianity (let alone voice serious criticism of it). Just like Islamics, they can’t take criticism and ridicule but boy, they can sure dish it out!

  70. #70 Lycosid
    January 6, 2009

    Time to go Levi Johnston on their daughters, and give fake names.

  71. #71 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    I believe in God (I know Myers and many of you don’t, that is your right, and that this is generally a taboo topic around here) – connecticut man1

    Taboo topic??? You mean if some blithering godbot comes along and starts cutting-and-pasting from the Bible, or repeating creationist crap we’ve heard a thousand times before, we tell them they’re a blithering godbot? Then guilty as charged. However, if it were a “taboo topic”, then posts putting forward theistic views would be routinely blocked or removed, which they are not.

  72. #72 GregB
    January 6, 2009

    Obama doesn’t hate gay people and he want science, not dogma, to be taught in our science classes. Therefore he must not be a Christian.

    Hey Christians! Look up the “No True Scotsman” fallacy.

  73. #73 Alyson
    January 6, 2009

    I think that they should be incredibly happy to see Obama in the public sphere. This is a guy who was raised secular, and chose Christianity as an adult, which says a lot more for the faith than a lifelong believer who’s been indoctrinated since birth. But, he supports stem cell research, doesn’t hate gays, and he keeps his reasoning where the rest of us can see it, so these wingnuts want nothing to do with him. Their loss.

  74. #74 Tony
    January 6, 2009

    How much do you want to bet that this “Xtian Anti-Defamation Commission is really just one wanker with a Bill Donohue complex?

  75. #75 mayhempix
    January 6, 2009

    “It is time for the Christian bashing to stop and for Christians to no longer be treated like second-class citizens.”

    Yeah!! You took away their right to execute homosexuals! You took away their right to criminalize sex between consenting adults! You took away their right to make Christianity the dominant religion in the classroom! You force evidence based science education upon their children! You deny that the Founding Fathers established a Christian nation! You claim facts triumph over fairy tales! What a bunch of religious bigots!

    Release the Christians from their bonds of oppression now or I’ll shoot this puppy to prove the power and omnipotence of God’s love and vengeful nature!!!!

  76. #76 Andrés Diplotti
    January 6, 2009

    Brute @57

    “I don’t feel brave and courageous and the Lord said I will be with you. Throw down that rod. Pick it back up. I’ll show you what to do.”

    And lo, the Lord gave us aerobic exercise! Hallelujah!

  77. #77 BMcP
    January 6, 2009

    I found that Proposition 8 Musical uninteresting without anything innovative or actually funny until Neil Patrick Harris did his bit about the money aspect, which was the only creative and really hilarious part. Jack Black did alright as Jesus though as was humorous, just his dialog was old hat.

  78. #78 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    Brute@57,
    Wow! Barack Obama is a Christian! Hold the front page!!!1!one!!

    Where, in this unsourced screed (no, saying he said it in/wrote it from Selma, Alabama isn’t giving a source), do you see evidence he has a Messiah complex? I’m guessing it’s in the paragraph beginning:

    “Be strong and have courage, for I am with you wherever you go.”

    Now the “I am with you” could be a reference to himself, but it could also be, could it not, quoting what God is supposed to have said? If there is a written source, that might tell us. If it was spoken, hearing it might tell us. So, where exactly did you get this? When we know, we’ll maybe be in a position to judge whether your claim is justified.

  79. #79 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    Anyone who believes in stupid nonsense, such as Christianity, is therefore either stupid, crazy, or brainwashed.

    I say ayone who believes in nonsense like naturalism is stupid ,crazy and brainwashed.
    I love that argument by assertion

  80. #80 mayhempix
    January 6, 2009

    I see the Brute troll is defecating in the living room again.
    Once trolls pass a certain age it’s virtually impossible to housebreak them.

  81. #81 Spook
    January 6, 2009

    Meyer’s has also asked people to steal the Eucharist for him in order that he might desecrate it and display it on his blog.

    Hmm, is that defamation I smell? Because I’m pretty sure that “stealing” magic crackers wasn’t part of the plan.

    I think PZ pretty much hit the nail on the head responding to this nonsense. I hadn’t heard of this group before, but I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that Donohue isn’t the only professional crybaby out there.

  82. #82 BlueIndependent
    January 6, 2009

    “According to ‘research’ we ‘conducted’, we think Obama isn’t Christian enough, making him completely not a Christian at all. The mighty and powerful Oz has spoken.”

    Hey, I can do research like that right now: According to my trained eye and advanced reading abilities, as well as my capabilities for conducting deep study and data mining ON THE FLY, I have determined the CADC to be a group of busy-body malcontents angry that they’re losing hearts and minds, and with nothing better to do than to make meaningless pronouncements in an attempt to garner any semblance of respect and power they can to push their doltish and insipid ideology.

    I think I’m going to start my own defamation detection service for religious entities so I can make all kinds of money off of thoughtful “research”.

  83. #83 BurningRiver
    January 6, 2009

    I’m just disappointed that they didn’t even give a bump to Hamlet 2 for its rousing musical number “Rock Me Sexy Jesus” (the high point of the film). They manufacture “evidence” but they leave out one of the catchiest tunes of the year? Blasphemous!

    If these people had an ounce of humor perhaps they’d be a little more “Christlike” and less resemble the Pharisees Jesus used to mock. Oh… wait… that would require some intelligence!

  84. #84 60613
    January 6, 2009

    My new favorite oxymoron: “Christian Intellectual”.

    I also find it highly amusing that this dude charges “Only $75″ to distribute any release to his “selected” outlets.

    I still want to know how I can sell my soul to the devil and enrich myself by promulgating hatred and stoopidity. Think this guy will tutor me?

  85. #85 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    I say ayone who believes in nonsense like naturalism is stupid ,crazy and brainwashed. I love that argument by assertion.

    As if we would believe a godbot who can’t show evidence for his deity. At what point will you quite lying?

  86. #86 BlueIndependent
    January 6, 2009

    I must say I find their description for #6 very interesting. Apparently Bill Maher talked to all the wrong people, “…and did not allow for legitimate Christian answers from any leading Christian intellectuals.” That’s odd. So I have to be Bill Donohue before any secularist is allowed to ask a question? Oh wait that’s right: Catholics aren’t Christians. Forgot that little detail. Anyhow, so I have to be some little Napolean like Hagee, who proselytizes to many millions, before a secularist is allowed to ask a question? I can’t just go ask a weekly churchgoer? Are weekly churchgoers too stupid? Do they have a considerable lack of intellectual depth, as the description seems to indicate?

  87. #87 mothra
    January 6, 2009

    Are we sure this is the REAL Christian Anti-defamation Commission? Not the Anti-defamation Christian Commission or the Christian Commission of Anti-defamation, or the Anti-defamation Commission of Christians. One never knows.

  88. #88 Pat
    January 6, 2009

    Wow, it’s news to me that the Bible has been banned in Colorado. Not that I am a fan of banning books of any kind. Well, now, if they could just pry the Dobson gang and F**k-us on the Family out of Colorado Springs, this state just might be worth living in again.

  89. #89 Seeker
    January 6, 2009

    In an attempt to poke a little inter-nicine strife, I posted a link to Jack Chick’s latest, an attack against the pope and Catholicism in general.

    I wonder what they’ll do with this, because based on that list, they seem to be supporting both Catholics and non-Catholic Christians.

    I hope they’ll self-explode when trying to decide whether this qualifies as “Christian bashing” or not :D

  90. #90 Matt Heath
    January 6, 2009

    Mothra@#86: Splitters!

  91. #91 Blake Stacey
    January 6, 2009

    I’m just waiting for the Marquis de Coiffure to cite these people as the “swing voters” who could be reached if only the Don Imus Atheists (TM) would stop being so darn strident.

  92. #92 dinkum
    January 6, 2009

    Mothra (#86), that’s a damn fine point.

    After all, when one is resolved to Fuck ‘Em, one must ensure that the proper ‘Em is /are being Fucked, because proper, righteous Fuck ‘Ems are true investments, and must not be wasted on trivial ..

    …ah, fuck it. Fuck ‘Em All.

  93. #93 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    So, where exactly did you get this?

    Knockgoats # 77,

    From The Messiah’s website……..you people are really priceless………..So it seems that Obama is a “Godbot”. You’ve elected a “believer”……..good job.

    http://www.barackobama.com/2007/03/04/selma_voting_rights_march_comm.php

  94. #94 Sarah
    January 6, 2009

    I noticed that the Senator from my state, Grassley, was the bonus instance on this list. That makes me happy. He’s been digging into the financial records of a lot of evangelicals who broadcast their crap on television.

  95. #95 SteveM
    January 6, 2009

    Does anyone know the meaning of the term “alter boys” in number 9?

    Perfect example of the danger of replacing proofreading with automated spellcheckers.

    Spellcheckers are the work of Satan!

  96. #96 John Phillips, FCD
    January 6, 2009

    Billy Sands, it has already been done. Have a look here for a sample;

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iq_XZuF6Vsk&feature=related

    There are many more if you care to look. Initially, after complaints from catlickers like Donowhore youtube removed many. However, when others complained about the removal they relented.

  97. #97 mothra
    January 6, 2009

    et tu Brute?

  98. #98 Sgt. Obvious
    January 6, 2009

    Perfect example of the danger of replacing proofreading with automated spellcheckers.

    Spellcheckers are the work of Satin!

    Fixed that for ya.

  99. #99 Kate
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, the words you use don’t mean what you think they mean. Try again.

  100. #100 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Well, I for one am certainly glad that the “Man of The People” Obama has decided to send his kids to a private school that only charges $29,000.00 per year as opposed to one of the tawdry public schools available that the rest of us are forced to send our children to.

    No religious “indoctrination” for his kids…..no sir.

    About the Religious Society of Friends:

    The Religious Society of Friends was originated by George Fox (1624-1691) during a period of political upheaval and social change in England. The established churches, Catholic and Anglican, were at a low ebb at this time, caught up in conflicts and preoccupied with forms and power struggles rather than religious witness. Neither provided much help to the victims of upheaval in a violent century, and so there were thousands of “seekers” who were looking for something that they could believe in and that would give meaning to their lives.

    Quakers first established schools in England to provide their children with a “guarded” education, one that protected the children from the influences of the larger society.

    Quaker Values:

    The Quaker belief that there is “that of God” in each of us shapes everything we do at Sidwell Friends School.

  101. #101 Charles
    January 6, 2009

    As for #5 on that list, I live in Fredericksburg, VA. That sort of behavior is, sadly, still acceptable ’round these parts as separation of church and state has no place in the big VA. Even though we went to Obama in the election, this state is still very very far from becoming as enlightened as some of our northern and western neighbors, even if we try. In God We Trust is still a very strong sentiment in my backwards little town, even though a small majority of us are fighting the good fight.

    In a nutshell, I want to apologize to everything that is logical and reasonable for having this stain on my town’s legacy. That award saddens me on a different level than it does the Christian soliders…it’s indicative of living in a bible belt state that never plans on bending to conventional reason.

  102. #102 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Is EricA the homophobic turd back as Brute? Their obsessions and styles are similar.

  103. #103 Sastra
    January 6, 2009

    I found this one the oddest:

    INSTANCE #2: Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin Is Attacked:
    Alaska Governor, Sarah Palin, came under sharp attack by some in the mainstream media because she self-identifies as a Christian.

    They don’t think it relevant that someone who wants to be a heartbeat away from the presidency of an elderly man is “Rapture Ready” and believes she regularly gets supernatural signs and messages from God? Nonsense. Of course that’s relevant. How is this ‘persecution?’

    These people wish to pretend that, as long as it’s labeled “religion,” it’s out of bounds of all criticism. Never mind that this is supposed to be a guiding philosophy and belief system that takes over your life: other people need to either praise it, or ignore it. Whether you’re ready to jump start Armaggedon or take away human rights, once you call it religion it’s like you’re on what we used to call ‘gool.’

    Sorry. You don’t get to call gool.

  104. #104 Alex
    January 6, 2009

    John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

    May the lord bless you and keep you, may he make his face shine on you and be gracious to you. May he lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

  105. #105 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    January 6, 2009

    Wow, Christians have it great in the US! When your top-ten list of “defamation” includes piddling shit like second- and third-rate entertainers making videos and a guy throwing a cracker in the trash, and you still have to make stuff up wholesale just to round out your list to ten items, then your group is doing pretty damned fine in my book.

  106. #106 John Phillips, FCD
    January 6, 2009

    Alex, fuck you too.

  107. #107 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    I for one am certainly happy that Obama doesn’t feel it’s necessary to proclaim his faith publicly…..he seems content to follow the “low key” “private” approach. I know lot’s of Christians that send out full page advertisements through the mail proclaiming their religious faith…..

    “The Obama camp has a new South Carolina mailer touting him as a “committed Christian” who has been “called to Christ.”

    http://tpmelectioncentral.talkingpointsmemo.com/2008/01/obama_lit_in_south_carolina_pushes_back_on_false_muslim_smears.php

  108. #108 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    January 6, 2009

    the rest of us are forced to send our children to.

    Forced? Hey, pony up the cash and you can send your kids to private school, too.

  109. #109 mothwentbad
    January 6, 2009

    Jesus Christ, these fuckers need to shut their hypocritical fucking mouths. Can you imagine if John McCain had been there when Jesus was talking to the rich man?

    “Now wait a second, sir. This Mr. Christ just wants to redistribute your wealth. That’s not a plan to move Rome forward. He should be creating wealth, not taxing you for working hard.”

    That’s John “Christian Nation” McCain for you. Put that on the list.

    Bastards.

  110. #110 jimmiraybob
    January 6, 2009

    ….until they [Christians] show they slimmest thread of humanity…

    The problem is that Christianity despises the humanness of those it professes to love. When you spend 99% of your time castigating the evil wickedness and absolute depravity of the flesh and mind it doesn’t help to end the rant with “have a nice day” or “piece be with you” or “but we love you.”

    “Humanity” becomes slaughtering the multitude to save the souls (I was soooo tempted to write soles) of the chosen few – and the various tribes can’t agree on who the chosen few are so better to slaughter em all and let god sort it out. Anybody believe that Jesus would be a Christian today? Anybody believe that he wouldn’t make the CADC list for the things that he would say against the doctrines and hypocracy?

  111. #111 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Poor Brute, his world is turned upsidedown with Obama and Fraken being elected. He is just showing us poor liberals how one should act if the conservatives win the next election. How sporting of him to show us how the Golden Rule works.

  112. #112 Matt Heath
    January 6, 2009

    brute@#99: You’re bothering to hate on the Quakers? It’s a religion for people who find the Unitarians too strict and conservative.

  113. #113 The Countess
    January 6, 2009

    PZ, they couldn’t even spell your name correctly. What does the extra “E” stand for? Evolution?

  114. #114 The Petey
    January 6, 2009

    Leave it to a fundy to take something LITERALLY that was meant to be figurative.

    I really don’t think Obama was trying to say he was one of the prophets from the Old Testament. I think he was quoting scripture to show a point about having faith in god to see someone through a struggle.

    ME thinks Brute dislikes Obama and is attributing the messiah complex to him out of that disliking. If this isn’t the case, then every clergyman and everywhere who has ever quoted scripture akin to these quotes to illustrate a point ALSO has a messiah complex; meaning that MOST of the world’s clergy are insane and megalomaniacs. Actually, that seems to fit.

  115. #115 Marcus Ranum
    January 6, 2009

    CADC has determined that by any biblical and historic Christian standard, Barack Obama is not a Christian

    Christians have been bashing other christians for a whole long time.

  116. #116 The Petey
    January 6, 2009

    Posted by: mothwentbad | January 6, 2009 11:21 AM

    Jesus Christ, these fuckers need to shut their hypocritical fucking mouths.

    if they shut their mouths they’d suffocate

  117. #117 Kate
    January 6, 2009

    No one in the states is *forced* to send their kids anywhere. Home schooling is always an option… So is working a little more to pay for private school. Not all of them are $29,000 US a year.

  118. #118 Denis Loubet
    January 6, 2009

    It’s great that they’re so Jesusy. It’s like that time when Jesus suddenly stood up straight, threw down his cross, and said, “It’s time for this crucifixion to stop, and for me to get the respect I demand!” And he made all the Roman soldiers vanish in puffs of screaming flames with a wave of his omnipotent hand, did the same to the onlookers that had failed to help him, with a muttered “Fuckers.”, and flew off to heaven.

    Or maybe I read that part wrong.

  119. #119 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    you people are really priceless………..So it seems that Obama is a “Godbot”. You’ve elected a “believer”……..good job. – Brute

    Hands up anyone who didn’t know Obama has consistently described himself as a Christian…

    …as have Biden, McCain, and Palin. Not sure about all the minor candidates, but the effective choice was between two pairs of declared Christians. The one among the four whom the description “godbot” fits best, of course, is Palin: creobot, anti-gay, anti-abortion… So, Brute, your point was? Oh, yes. Obama’s “Messiah complex”.

    Hands up anyone who has a source for anyone referring to Obama as “the Messiah” other than satirically…

    As suspected, Brute has been dishonestly quote-mining. Here’s the only bit in the quotes he gave that might have suggested a “Messiah complex”, restored to its context. The bolded text is what Brute quoted (he put each of the two separate parts within quotation marks):

    You know, when Moses was first called to lead people out of the Promised Land, he said I don’t think I can do it, Lord. I don’t speak like Reverend Lowery. I don’t feel brave and courageous and the Lord said I will be with you. Throw down that rod. Pick it back up. I’ll show you what to do. The same thing happened with the Joshua generation.

    Joshua said, you know, I’m scared. I’m not sure that I am up to the challenge, the Lord said to him, every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon, I have given you. Be strong and have courage, for I am with you wherever you go. Be strong and have courage. It’s a prayer for a journey. A prayer that kept a woman in her seat when the bus driver told her to get up, a prayer that led nine children through the doors of the little rock school, a prayer that carried our brothers and sisters over a bridge right here in Selma, Alabama. Be strong and have courage.

    When you see row and row of state trooper facing you, the horses and the tear gas, how else can you walk? Towards them, unarmed, unafraid. When they come start beating your friends and neighbors, how else can you simply kneel down, bow your head and ask the Lord for salvation? When you see heads gashed open and eyes burning and children lying hurt on the side of the road, when you are John Lewis and you’ve been beaten within an inch of your life on Sunday, how do you wake up Monday and keep on marching?

    Be strong and have courage, for I am with you wherever you go. We’ve come a long way in this journey, but we still have a long way to travel. We traveled because God was with us. It’s not how far we’ve come. That bridge outside was crossed by blacks and whites, northerners and southerners, teenagers and children, the beloved community of God’s children, they wanted to take those steps together, but it was left to the Joshua’s to finish the journey Moses had begun and today we’re called to be the Joshua’s of our time, to be the generation that finds our way across this river.

    So, exactly as I suspected, Obama was putting the words beginning “Be strong” into God’s mouth, not referring to himself.

    Brute, when you have to resort to quotemining tricks typical of creobots, that means you’re lying. But you knew that.

  120. #120 raven
    January 6, 2009

    These clowns, the CADC, and the Catholic league are the reason that Xianity is on the downhill slide. When xian becomes synonymous with stupid, crazy, lying, and violent, who would want to be one?

    Xians make up 78% of the population in the USA. Pretty hard to be a persecuted minority when you are actually a persecuting majority.

    The CADC are just fundie wingnuts with a grandiose sounding name and too much time and not enough brains. Polls show the majority of the US population, mostly other xians are sick and tired of these morons.

  121. #121 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    January 6, 2009

    @Denis Loubet #117: That sounds like the Michael Bay version of “Passion of the Christ”, due in theaters Summer 2010!

  122. #122 Rudy
    January 6, 2009

    I must have missed the wafer thing. PZ, that was really tacky and adolescent. This is the only thing on the list that really counts as “Christian bashing”.

    It is a little ironic, of course, that nearly all denominations of Protestants, including all of the fundamentalist ones, would agree that it’s just a cracker. But it is beyond rude to take to encourage people to send you ritual objects to “display” as crackers. Did you really do that??

    Would you feel the same if, say, Rush Limbaugh burned a Koran, or if someone deliberately destroyed a Hopi Kachina out of animus toward native Americans? Bigotry is bigotry;
    anti-Catholic bigotry has a long history in the US.

    It’s just a cracker to me, too, but so’s the kachina just a doll. I would still treat it with respect if I were given one.

  123. #123 raven
    January 6, 2009

    CADC has determined that by any biblical and historic Christian standard, Barack Obama is not a Christian.

    I’m sure that the CADC has also determined that anyone not in their death cult of morons with brains the size of walnuts who think hatred of other groups is a necessity are also just FAKE XIANS.

    Probably that is the catholics, unitarians, JWs, Mormons, mainstream protestants, in short, the vast majority of xians.

    In times past, they would be calling for a jihad to kill the heretics, blashemers, and apostates. Fortunately, xian sectarian violence is rare today. The secular authorities took away their armies and weapons so they have to lie on the internet rather than cover the streets with blood and bodies.

  124. #124 Billy C
    January 6, 2009

    Out of politeness to my parents, I attend Sunday School at their evangelical church while visiting them. One Sunday the text was some bit about being persecuted for the faith which prompted the discussion, “How do Christians face persecution today?”

    Their conclusion? (1) Television shows and movies do not have enough Christian characters; and (2) the pace of everyday life makes it difficult to find time to pray and read God’s Holy Word.

    It occurred that (2) might be a smaller problem if they spent less time monitoring (1). It also occurrs to me that if Christians feel persecuted by (1) and (2) they’re not really going to put up much of a fight when we Illuminati decide to make our move.

    Persecution? Wimps.

  125. #125 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    I can’t just go ask a weekly churchgoer? Are weekly churchgoers too stupid? Do they have a considerable lack of intellectual depth, as the description seems to indicate?

    Yes they do. Well at least the people Bill interviewed were rather stupid. He should have inrterviewed someone like Bill Craig or N.T. Wright or Plantiga.

  126. #126 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Rudy, your whole diatribe has been thoughly discussed. Type in Crackergate to the search engine and see that we had 30,000 posts on the subject. The conclusion. You are wrong, and you are asking for special privelges for the cracker.

  127. #127 Naked Bunny with a Whip
    January 6, 2009

    I must have missed the wafer thing.

    Which means you don’t have the slightest idea what the context was. he Christian sites never mention that, of course.

    I would still treat it with respect if I were given one.

    But would you also try to wreck a college student’s budding career over one, and send countless death threats to someone over one? PZ was responding to people who literally believe that Eucharist crackers are more important then their fellow human beings. People like that don’t deserve any respect at all.

  128. #128 BobC
    January 6, 2009

    According to research into President Elect Obama’s own statements about faith, and an examination of Obama’s position on moral issues, CADC has determined that by any biblical and historic Christian standard, Barack Obama is not a Christian, although he claims he is a “devout Christian.”

    I hope this convinces Obama that sucking up to idiots accomplishes nothing.

  129. #129 Qwerty
    January 6, 2009

    But… But… You bashed a wafer, not a Christian.

  130. #130 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    He should have inrterviewed someone like Bill Craig or N.T. Wright or Planti[n]ga – Facilis

    Then, instead of the plain stupid, he’d have got the fancy stupid.

  131. #131 Ian
    January 6, 2009

    “It it time for Christian bashing to increase, I should think.”

    I smell a quote ripe for mining.

  132. #132 Jadehawk
    January 6, 2009

    Rudy: context is everything. PZ didn’t just randomly desecrate a cracker. it was a response to the abuse received by a Catholic who brought a friend with him to church and who wanted to show a wafer to that friend. the guy has received death-threats and was attacked by his congregation!

    besides, the desecration of the cracker included the desecration of “the God Delusion” as well as pages from the Koran, if I remember correctly.

  133. #133 raven
    January 6, 2009

    How much do you want to bet that this “Xtian Anti-Defamation Commission is really just one wanker with a Bill Donohue complex?

    Probably. My organization, the Galactic Catholic League for Truth and Justice is far more influential than Donahue’s Catholic League. We have more leaders, consisting of me and two cats. Our collective IQ is certainly far higher than Bill Donahue’s.

  134. #134 Ian
    January 6, 2009

    INSTANCE #4: Colorado Law Criminalizes the Bible

    SB200, a Colorado state bill recently signed into law, criminalizes the Bible. Section 8 of the bill entitled “Publishing of discriminative matter forbidden” makes publishing the Bible illegal because it contains anti-homosexual passages. This is part of a larger effort to criminalize the expression of certain opinions and beliefs.

    What? Have they actually read SB200? Article 1 reads:

    The general assembly hereby finds, determines, and declares that nothing in this act is intended to impede or otherwise limit the protections contained in section 4 of article II of the state constitution concerning the free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship.

    I guess this is yet another instance of Lying for Jesus.

  135. #135 The Petey
    January 6, 2009

    #133 Posted by: Ian | January 6, 2009 12:19 PM

    They pick and choose what parts of the bible to bandy about
    makes sense they pick and choose which parts of state statutes in the same fashion.

  136. #136 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    @Redhead

    As if we would believe a godbot who can’t show evidence for his deity. At what point will you quite lying?

    Are you backing off the “physical evidence” requirement?`
    You asserted earlier that “all assertions must be supported by physical evidence” .I asked you to provide physical evidence for that assertion and you were not able. I won’t start providing evidence for my assertion until you start providing evidence for yours

  137. #137 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Faicilis, you are at a scientific blog. I am a scientist. In science, the burden of proof is always on those making the claim. So the burden of proof is upon you to demostrate evidence for your imaginary god. Now either show the physical evidence for your god that will pass muster with scientists, magicians and professional debunkers, or acknowldege you have no proof and should shut up.
    The negative can’t be proven, which is why nobody but the reigiots like yourself keep asking for that.

  138. #138 the petey
    January 6, 2009

    So, which tone does Facilis @ #135 project most:

    “I know you are but what am I?”

    or

    “I asked first?”

  139. #139 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    So, which tone does Facilis @ #135 project most

    “I got bupkis!”

  140. #140 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 6, 2009

    Did anyone else find it funny that they lump together different strands of christianity? Whining over Bill Maher being disrespectful of the Pope; catholic. And then whining over sane people being disrespectful of Palin; evangelical protestant. At least Jack Chick can keep these strands separated.

    Remember the good old days when they would denounce each other as being anti-christian and would, at times, wage war against each other. Perhaps those days were not so good.

  141. #141 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Gack! No spell checker on the work browser. Last sentence in # 136 should read …the religiots….

  142. #142 mr.ed
    January 6, 2009

    When these good folks get into a pinch, they usually want a “smart Jew lawyer” to get them out of it.

  143. #143 ThirtyFiveUp
    January 6, 2009

    From the Maher comment they write:

    “You can’t be saying that the Catholic Church is no better than this creepy (radical Mormon polygamist) Texas cult. For one thing, alter(sic) boys can’t even get pregnant. But really, what tripped up the little cult on the prairie was that they only abused hundreds of kids, not thousands all over the world. Cults get raided; religions get parades… If you have a few hundred followers and you let some of them molest children, they call you a cult leader. If you have a billion, they call you Pope.”

    Last time ThirtyFiveUp checked, the Pope and the RC were Christians. Or is this more of what Chick was doing by ridiculing the Mass in his cartoon?

  144. #144 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 6, 2009

    Facilus, the concept of god is not needed in science. The concept is not needed to explain anything. Whether god exists or not is immaterial. Therefore, scientists need not have to prove or disprove the concept of god. It does not enter into anything.

    But for the likes of you, the concept of god is the center of everything. Therefore, it falls upon people like you to show that the concept of god is needed.

    Is this unequal? Yes it is. But you are the one making the claims of the necessity of god.

  145. #145 talking snake
    January 6, 2009

    Re:#99
    I don’t blame Obama for wanting the best education possible for his kids. I blame Republicans for trying to kill public education with their voucher and charter school agenda (not to mention No Child Left Untested). They couldn’t get vouchers, which would have been able to be used at religious schools. But, they got charter schools (and an unfunded No Child etc). Not all charter schools are bad, but charter schools are private and they siphon money from traditional public schools. We can’t vote for their school board, but tax dollars support the students. I did get to vote against the religious wacko home schooler running for the Minneapolis public school board this past election, however. What’s more important than quality public education? (Well, maybe a big fatty.)

  146. #146 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis the Child Murderer Sympathizer Defender Worshiper (see here),

    According to you, (1) A divine being created the universe and (2) He regularly intervened (intervenes?) in human affairs.

    Why would an all powerful being need to interfere in his creation? Did he mess up and needs to fix things? Also, you’d think if (1) and (2) were true there would be an abundance of physical evidence. Surely a universe with an all powerful being that intervenes in events would look very different that one that doesn’t have such a being. Yet, you can’t produce a shred of evidence.

    Why would an powerful being even care if some mere mortals believed in his existence or not? Furthermore, why would he give them such a hard time by playing this divine game of hide-and-go-seek?

  147. #147 C. L. Hanson
    January 6, 2009

    That Jack Black Proposition 8 musical was fantastic!!! The Christians should feel honored that such talent would be expended on them.

    I actually used that video to teach my kids about Jesus, as I explained here, at Rational Moms.

  148. #148 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    Rudy,

    Would you feel the same if, say, Rush Limbaugh burned a Koran

    You moron, if you actually did your research you’d have known that PZ also desecrated a Koran.

  149. #149 Pat
    January 6, 2009

    INSTANCE #6: Religulous the Movie

    Bill Maher released a very shallow, pseudo-intellectual documentary entitled Religulous. The movie did not cover any new intellectual ground. It simply raised the old attacks on the faith. Maher studiously avoided being fair and did not allow for legitimate Christian answers from any leading Christian intellectuals.

    INSTANCE #6: Expelled the Movie

    Ben Stein released a very shallow, pseudo-intellectual documentary entitled Expelled. The movie did not cover any new intellectual ground. It simply raised the old attacks on evolution. Stein studiously avoided being fair and did not allow for legitimate from any leading intellectuals.

    Fascinating…

  150. #150 CJO
    January 6, 2009

    You asserted earlier that “all assertions must be supported by physical evidence” .I asked you to provide physical evidence for that assertion and you were not able. I won’t start providing evidence for my assertion until you start providing evidence for yours

    Don’t be dense. “Must” or “should” in an assertion obviously denote a value judgement. If you assert that X exists, you should be able to point to something, anything, uncontroversially resident in the empirical world that we can agree provides evidence for the existence of X.

    If I assert that you should do Y, we’re in different epistemic territory, don’t you agree?

    Prissy little word games don’t absolve you of any responsibility to support your preposterous claims, they just make it all the more evident that you can see that they are preposterous and not worth defending.

  151. #151 Tabby Lavalamp
    January 6, 2009

    Now I’m no fan of Obama and feel he benefited mightily from a tsunami of misogyny, but this bit of hypocrisy cracked me up…

    INSTANCE #3: Barack Obama Defames Christianity

    According to research into President Elect Obama’s own statements about faith, and an examination of Obama’s position on moral issues, CADC has determined that by any biblical and historic Christian standard, Barack Obama is not a Christian, although he claims he is a “devout Christian.”

    INSTANCE #2: Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin Is Attacked

    Alaska Governor, Sarah Palin, came under sharp attack by some in the mainstream media because she self-identifies as a Christian. The Washington Post published a cartoon by Pat Oliphant mocking Palin because she has a background as a Pentecostal/Charismatic Christian. A suspicious arson fire at Sarah Palin’s home church recently caused over $1,000,000 in damage.

    So they are attacking (sorry, “attacked by”) Obama because he self-identifies as Christian, and then are upset because Palin is being attacked for self-identifying as Christian. Does the concept of reading what they’re writing before they publish it ever occur to them?

    This is my absolute favourite though…

    And finally, the #1 Christian Bashing Instance in America for 2008…

    INSTANCE #1: Radical Homosexuals Assault Prop 8 Marriage Supporters in California

    During and after the November campaign stories flooded in of pro-Prop 8 signs being taken, people verbally and physically assaulted, church property and private automobiles vandalized, and person’s jobs and pastor’s lives threatened simply for exercising their right to campaign and vote in support of traditional marriage.

    Those damned radical homosexuals! All the poor Christians did was exercise their right to restrict and remove your rights! In a democracy, rights are determined by the majority so just get over it! And don’t start whining about “constitutional republics” supposedly protecting the rights of minorities. Nobody wants to hear that when they’d rather democratically vote to walk all over you.
    And come on. It’s not like the preaching against homosexuality has ever led to the assault or murder of gays and lesbians unlike the physical assaults of poor innocent Christians who have been attacked for simply being against Prop 8.

    Okay, all sarcasm aside, assaulting people is never a good thing, but when it comes to the final tally, these Christian “victims” have a loooooong way to go to catch up in numbers to the victims of anti-gay hate crimes.

  152. #152 Rudy
    January 6, 2009

    OK, I get that the context of the “cracker” incident is broader than I thought; and no sane person (or sane Catholic, I hope) thinks the Eucharist wafer is more important than a real person. The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath, and all that.

    Being *actually* disrespectful to a host is supposed to help a person wrongly accused of being disrespectful… I just don’t see it. If that student *approved* of PZ’s stunt, I’d feel a little (not a lot) better. And insulting Muslims helped how, exactly?

    It seems an obvious point, but you can’t desecrate The God Delusion. Nobody thinks it’s sacred. Adding it in just seems sophomoric.

    Maybe this extreme situation called for this kind of guerilla theater on PZ’s part. And good for him for helping the student. But I wonder if the consciences of the congregation were changed at all by PZ’s antics?

  153. #153 Pierce R. Butler
    January 6, 2009

    It’s even more of a pity to hear these pampered pompous pissants puling about pretended persecutions when there are so many christians actually facing violent and unjustified attacks in (for example) China, the Orissa region of India, “liberated” Iraq, and various spots in Africa.

    No doubt the CADC’s market research has concluded that spotlighting that sort of harassment is too furrin/swarthy/unsexy to produce the desired fund-raising response.

  154. #154 The Petey
    January 6, 2009

    #150 Posted by: Tabby Lavalamp | January 6, 2009 1:13 PM

    And come on. It’s not like the preaching against homosexuality has ever led to the assault or murder of gays and lesbians unlike the physical assaults of poor innocent Christians who have been attacked for simply being against Prop 8.

    The hate-mopngers were actually FOR prop-8.
    Not that I live in CA, but seeing my right to marry there stripped away makes sort of a sticker about it.

  155. #155 Nerd of Redhed
    January 6, 2009

    Rudy, the main fallout of the exercise was that the Catholic League was shown to be a bunch of impotent, but noisy, blowhards. Once their impotence was shown, that made things easier for Webster Cook. So it did what PZ intended it to.

  156. #156 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 6, 2009

    Posted by: Rudy | January 6, 2009 1:21 PM

    It seems an obvious point, but you can’t desecrate The God Delusion. Nobody thinks it’s sacred. Adding it in just seems sophomoric.

    Not so obvious to you. One of the most common charges atheists have heard in recent years is that atheism is a religious belief and that Richard Dawkins is the atheist pope.

  157. #157 ln
    January 6, 2009

    Hey, Mr. Devout Christian… I DISAGREE WITH YOU! :O

    Can you hear the Waaahmbulance yet?

  158. #158 Paul
    January 6, 2009

    @Rudy, 151

    How about you take a step back and read what you’re saying?

    There’s no problem with burning TDR, because nobody calls it sacred (btw, please tell the religious that, they like to accuse all atheists of worshipping Dawkins/Darwin/Satan). However, desecrating the Eucharist or the Quar’an is off limits because some people find them sacred.

    Ever killed a bug? Why are your sacraments more important than the sanctity of ALL life held sacred by some religions? Do we all need to stop eating beef because Hindi believe cows are sacred?

    It’s called special pleading. Your religion is not a special snowflake.

  159. #159 Patricia, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis – Where is god?
    He is in heaven, right?
    Where is heaven?
    Up in the sky?

    The Spacelab has been up in heaven for how many years?
    Have any reports about seeing god, or having god over for some Tang ever been sent down to us?
    child speak/

  160. #160 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    I find it funny that Christians continue to label atheist as “angry”, as though it were without cause. Yet, this list of “Christian basing” includes what? A musical, somebody swearing, and a movie. This is discrimination?

    How would they feel if a presidential candidate said “I don’t know that Christians should be regarded as citizens, nor should they be regarded as patriotic”. Replace Christian with atheists and that’s what George H.W. Bush said during his 1988 presidential campaign. Or how about if surveys continued to show that Christians were the least trusted minority in the country? Or if people were saying that you continuing to say that one can’t be moral and be a Christian?

    How can you simultaneously say that the US is a “Christian nation” and claim to be discriminated against? There is a disproportionate number of Christians in both the House and the Senate. 43 of the last 43 presidents have been Christian. The new president is a secret Muslim Christian. This hardly seems like the experience of a downtrodden people.

    Yeah 17 centuries ago you guys were fed to lions, but since then YOU have generally been the discriminator and not the discriminatee.

  161. #161 talking snake
    January 6, 2009

    I can’t get enough desecration of the consecrated, be it a cracker, koran, or cross. You can throw flag in there, too.

  162. #162 Patricia, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Janine, New moniker? I missed the whole thing. Dang.

  163. #163 SteveM
    January 6, 2009

    43 of the last 43 presidents have been Christian.

    Jefferson is somewhat doubtful, but the point still stands.

  164. #164 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis @135,

    I think Nerd of Redhead made a slight mistake when he said “all assertions must be supported by physical evidence”, since there are assertions (tautologies) that are logically true independent of reality. What I would’ve said instead is that all existential claims require empirical evidence. That is, if you say “X exists”, then it is up to you to provide evidence for that; the default position must be that X is assumed not to exist until there is evidence that it does. To waive this requirement is to admit, by default, the existence of all things that may be imagined to exist and require the “disproof” of them: leprechauns, fairies, unicorns, orcs, and goblins, etc.

    The onus is on you, so if you have empirical evidence for god(s), let’s have it. Otherwise, your god “exists” only in the same sense as naiads and dryads: as an imagining, make-believe.

  165. #165 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    Rudy,

    anti-Catholic bigotry has a long history in the US

    It kind of pales in comparison to the enslavement of a people and complete conquest of another though.

    OK, I get that the context of the “cracker” incident is broader than I thought

    Which is why you shouldn’t be ignorant about a subject and comment on it.

    and no sane person (or sane Catholic, I hope) thinks the Eucharist wafer is more important than a real person.

    If you read about the incident you’d see they were assaulting him over the wafer.

    The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath, and all that.

    Do you keep the Sabbath holy like your holy text requires you to?

    And insulting Muslims helped how, exactly?

    I don’t think PZ got any angry Muslims emailing him at all. However, he got thousands of emails from Catholics, including a few death threats. Is this holding a person to be more important than a wafer?

  166. #166 Jeanette
    January 6, 2009

    The Petey @63: I very much like your idea. Governments never should have gotten into the business of granting and withholding special privileges to consenting adults signifying official approval or disapproval of the mix of genitals involved.

  167. #167 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 6, 2009

    It was time for a new one. The latest Debra Rufini thread had a series of posts which ended with me imagining PZ in Scarface yelling “Say hello to my bitter friend!” I found it funny so I made the change.

  168. #168 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    “The Spacelab has been up in heaven for how many years?
    Have any reports about seeing god, or having god over for some Tang ever been sent down to us?
    child speak/”

    Hmmmm………………

    Looks like Obama believes in the mythical “man in the sky” fairy tale also. He seems to hold the “God Dellusion”; Same as Palin………

    “One Obama leaflet features photos of Obama praying with the words “COMMITTED CHRISTIAN” in large letters across the middle. It says Obama will be a president “guided by his Christian faith” and includes a quote from him saying, “I believe in the power of prayer.”

    “A second leaflet, which like the first doesn’t mention the Muslim rumor, includes photos of Obama with his family and a caption that says they are active members of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. It explains how as a young man Obama “felt a beckoning of the spirit and accepted Jesus Christ into his life.”

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22767392/

  169. #169 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    “Obama is a Christian!!!!!111one!!!” – Brute

    “The Pope is a Catholic!!!!!!1111one!!!!!” – Brute

    “Bears shit in the woods!!!!!!!111111one!!!!!!!” – Brute

  170. #170 Alex
    January 6, 2009

    Emmet @163

    I would add to that the requirement that pointing to ancient texts about such things as deities does not constitute evidence.

    Even if that poisonous book the bible contained detailed information about DNA, orbital paths of planets, atoms and particles, germs, or electrical theory – which admittedly would be a strong case for superior knowledge way back then – it still does not constitute evidence for deities.

  171. #171 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Emmet, I will acknowledge that you caught a slight mistake. If Facilis sees god as a personal belief, just between his ears, no evidence is required. But then, he shouldn’t try to impose his non-evidentual beliefs upon us like he has been doing. If he is trying to say a god exists that we must acknowledge, then the physical evidence is required.

  172. #172 The Petey
    January 6, 2009

    @ Jeanette #165

    Even if the government stopped calling it “marriage” I would be ok with it. The hate mongers than would be forced to show their true stripe in that it is NOT about protecting the sanctity of marriage but it is about NOT granting gays and lesbians the same respect for their relationships.

    Th e3 catholic church is the only denomination I am aware of that “respects the sanctity of marriage” because they refuse to marry divorcees. If marriage were so sacred – why do christians get divorced. ANY christian who has been divorced and claims to be against gay marriage out of the respect for sanctity of the institution is a mother fucking hypocrite.

    I REALLY want to see these same people get up and support a proposition to outlaw divorce in order to protect the sanctity of marriage.

  173. #173 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    “I think we make a mistake when we fail to acknowledge the power of faith in people’s lives. We need to understand that Americans are a religious people. Substantially more Americans believe in angels than in evolution.” – Barack Obama

    London Times

  174. #174 SC, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Whom is Brute addressing?

  175. #175 The Petey
    January 6, 2009

    @SC,OM #173

    The same person he talks to when he has sex

    himself

  176. #176 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Poor, poor, Brute. Obama was elected and he just doesn’t know what to do. All he can do is run around and talk trash, and sound like a complete idiot. Maybe he just needs to sleep for the next four years. Why don’t you start hibernating today?

  177. #177 Alex
    January 6, 2009

    Brute @ #172

    One word would change the context of that quote.

    “I think we make a mistake when we fail to acknowledge the dangerous power of faith in people’s lives. We need to understand that Americans are a religious people. Substantially more Americans believe in angels than in evolution.”

  178. #178 CrypticLife
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis, if you’re willing to back off on the evidence requirement, you really need to answer my two-MONTH old comment on your blog answering your “counter-challenge” where I hypothesize Jesus’ twin brother as an explanation for the alleged “resurrection”. I dashed off the response in only a few minutes and had forgotten I’d made it.

    There is, incidentally, some evidence that Jesus had a brother named James.

    Or perhaps you’re too busy making snide empty comments here?

  179. #179 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Nerd @170,

    My intention wasn’t to nit-pick — I think what you said was clear enough given the context — but to make it clearer to Facilis exactly why the onus is on him to provide evidence for whatever he asserts to exist, whether it’s a leprechaun or a god. I nit-picked only to remove the room that Facilis was using to wiggle and squirm.

  180. #180 Alex
    January 6, 2009

    OT

    I Found this at AU.org.

    “Troubling Times: N.Y. Newspaper Promotes Creation Museum During Special Arts & Leisure Weekend”

    I think the NYT needs a Pharyngula bomb.

  181. #181 talking snake
    January 6, 2009

    Brute@ #172
    Obama is a politician, and if he can’t finish out his term, dog forbid, Sarah Palin won’t do it for him. I feel better already.

  182. #182 mayhempix
    January 6, 2009

    “Substantially more Americans believe in angels than in evolution.” – Barack Obama

    Poor Brute doesn’t seem to understand that this is a factual observation, not an acknowledgment of agreement.

    I for one will be looking at Obama’s deeds and actions and so far he has appointed credible and highly qualified scientists in key positions. I would bet money on the fact that he wholeheartedly supports evidence based science teaching in school including evolution.

  183. #183 Bill Dauphin
    January 6, 2009

    The Spacelab has been up in heaven for how many years?

    Not to be a total geek or anything, but I think you’re thinking of the International Space Station (ISS). Spacelab is (was, actually; IIRC, it’s now retired) used to expand the scientific working space aboard the Space Shuttle for individual missions; it was never left in orbit, but was launched and recovered with each mission.

    We now return you to your regularly scheduled thoughtful rejoinders to whiny Xtian persecution fetishes….

  184. #184 CJO
    January 6, 2009

    There is, incidentally, some evidence that Jesus had a brother named James.

    Not really. (Idiosyncratic explanation for “the brother of the Lord” business available on request)

    But if you’re looking for a body-double for a resurrection hoax, why not Judas Didymos (“Twin”) Thomas, the self-same disciple Thomas, to whom is attributed the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas, and who was called the twin brother of Jesus by 2nd Century Egyptian Gnostics?

  185. #185 erasmus31
    January 6, 2009

    Will the damn whining never stop? You’d think people who made an art form of making millions into 2nd class citizens would by now know what constitutes a 2nd class citizen. Whining, while annoying, doesn’t get you what you want. It just gets you an altercation with a flyswatter.

  186. #186 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Emmet, we’re on the same page. I’ve been on enough committees over the years to realize that getting an idea on the table for others to chew over is important.

    I think somebody got spacelab, carried up/landed the in shuttle’s bay, confused with skylab, that was launched with one of the last saturns, and which has gone to the great fireball in the sky.

  187. #187 Patricia, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Brute – Obama being a christian doesn’t change one damn bit whether there is a god or not. I believe that’s called argument from authority. People try that with the pope too. Sorry, that’s still not proof.

  188. #188 frog
    January 6, 2009

    The best part is the projection. They’re the fucking Christian Anti-Defamation League! They can’t even leave the name to a historically defamed groups, but have to pretend that they were the victims of 1500 years!

    What disgusting nit-wits.

  189. #189 Stacy Harp
    January 6, 2009

    Real Christian persecution exists all over the world. I write about it every day over on The Voice of the Martyr’s Persecution Blog at http://www.persecutionblog.com

    Take some time and read through, I think you’ll see Christians being persecuted is real.

  190. #190 Rey Fox
    January 6, 2009

    Re: Proposition 8: Let’s not forget that proponents of Prop 8 are trying to nullify the same-sex marriages that happened over the past year, including that of my cousin. So yes, when Christians are having their actual marriages under attack, then maybe we can talk. Until then, they can go fuck themselves.

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2008/12/19/state/n150241S64.DTL

    The item about Obama in that list just tells me that the Christ-bashing indeed needs to increase. We might as well have the fun they’re accusing us of having. If we don’t, then we’ll still get these whinge-fests, which are really all about marginalizing anyone who disrupts the privileged position that religion has in the public square (and thus really all about marginalizing atheists), but we won’t even have the solid position of being out and unapologetic that we have now with Dawkins and others.

    “So if a significant percentage of Christians are apparently of the opinion that they have become a second-class majority, who do they think are the first-class citizens?”

    The monolithic entity known as The Enemy, of course. Anyone who argues for separation of church and state couldn’t possibly be a Christian. If you were to get them drunk, they might just come out and admit that it’s the Jews that they really can’t stand.

    By the way, whatever happened to Dana Jacobsen? Seems like a cool gal to me. I suppose it’s more fuel for the fire of “ESPN is biased against Notre Dame”, but I see nothing wrong with that. Winningest college football program in the country, loved by millions of assholes partly for their tenuous Irish connection but mostly because they win a lot, has their own TV deal and special consideration by the BCS and an institution supported by the friggin’ Catholic Church? I agree, fuck Notre Dame. I’ve enjoyed their recent football flailings immensely. Fuck Touchdown Jesus. Fuck…well, maybe not Jesus, he strikes me as one of the less odious characters in the Bible. Fuck the Bible. There, that’s getting to the heart of the matter. Fuck the truncheon they use.

  191. #191 Rey Fox
    January 6, 2009

    “Take some time and read through, I think you’ll see Christians being persecuted is real.”

    How about in America, do you think that persecution is real?

  192. #192 SC, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Alex @ #179,

    It’s especially strange given the new relationship between the NYT and Scienceblogs (in case anyone hasn’t checked out the right side of his or her screen lately) and the solid review of the four books (“Four Stakes in the Heart of ID” or something) that the AU post links to – and which I somehow managed to miss completely when it appeared. Shows a lack of coordination.

  193. #193 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Patricia,

    Re: # 186

    I wasn’t arguing the existence of God…….

    You’ve missed the point entirely; being:

    Most comments posted on this particular page (as well as this site) ridicule and mock people of faith as “unenlightened rubes” based solely on their personal religious convictions………unintelligent people that cannot discern fantasy from reality.

    I dare say that that the majority of the contributors voted and or supported Barry Hussein for President of the United States, which in effect, categorizes Mr. Obama (in their definition) as an “unenlightened, rube” that slavishly believes in “myths” and “fairy tales”.

    I haven’t seen one critique of Mr. Obama’s, Mr. Biden’s or Ms. Clinton’s publicly avowed religious beliefs in the lot.

    I’m certain that the same crowd bashed Governor Palin & President Bush for their personal religious beliefs quite publicly……there doesn’t seem to be any intellectual honesty, decorum, morality or integrity among you.

    Such is the Liberal mindset/world view………tolerance on your terms?

    How hypocritically pathetic……

  194. #194 jimmiraybob
    January 6, 2009

    Take some time and read through, I think you’ll see Christians being persecuted is real.

    There are humans being persecuted around the globe for all kinds of reasons. Is yours a special case? Do you stand up against persecution based on sexual identity and preference with equal zeal? Do you stand up for the rights of Palestinian civilians not to be slaughtered? Just wondering.

  195. #195 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Take some time and read through, I think you’ll see Christians being persecuted is real.

    Sure it’s real, just like it’s real for every other religion. The difference is that the examples above were obviously not persecution and in the united states what Christians call persecution is laughable. Bill Maher calls the Catholic Church an organisation of paedophiles? Quick, bring back the inquisition. No-one should ever be able to say that the Catholic Church has protected paedophile priests no matter how true it is.

    The whole top 10 list is just pathetic. Especially with the Christians trying to suppress homosexuals then complaining about a backlash afterwards.

  196. #196 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, most of us recognize that to get elected to public office in almost all of the US, especially for higher office, candidate must publically proclaim belief in an imaginary deity. It doesn’t mean we like it, but that is not going to change anytime in the near future. Some of us are mature enough to realize that carping repeatedly about it just makes us sound bitter, so we avoid doing so. Personally, I’m more worried about what a candidate does once in office.

  197. #197 Kevin Camp
    January 6, 2009

    Saying that you “threw a cracker in the trash” is disingenuous. You took something that was considered holy by someone else and threw it in the trash. Regardless of anything else, that is a disrespectful thing to do. That’s not being enlightened or intellectual, that’s being a dick. I wouldn’t come into your office, take something that was important to you, even if it was meaningless to me, and throw it in the trash. I wouldn’t steal a copy of the Koran, a statue of Buddha or even your FSM poster and throw it in the garbage. I know there are people out there that call themselves Christians that do not behave as they should, but please do not lump us all together. Alot of us just believe what we believe and are perfectly ok with you believing what you believe. We don’t feel threatened by the fact that you don’t believe in God. We don’t think that two guys getting married in California somehow diminishes our marriage in Alabama. We don’t think that Muslims are evil or that we are justified in… well pretty much anything the U.S. has done in the Middle East. We know that evolution is real and that dinosaur fossils weren’t “planted to test our faith”. We know that the universe is several billion years old. We just think that God started the whole thing rolling and he wants us to be nice to each other.

  198. #198 jimmiraybob
    January 6, 2009

    Take some time and read through, I think you’ll see Christians being persecuted is real.

    I heard a couple of good Christians* just this morning on an AM radio station chortling over the Palestinian animals in Gaza getting their just deserts. And they were not talking dogs and cats. Animals? Really? You do know that 80% of the “animals” being killed and maimed are civilians, including women and children, that are trapped by poverty and persecution don’t you? Children. Really.

    *this is a part of the host’s shtick so I’m not guessing here.

  199. #199 SC, OM
    January 6, 2009

    I haven’t seen one critique of Mr. Obama’s, Mr. Biden’s or Ms. Clinton’s publicly avowed religious beliefs in the lot.

    Why don’t you do a search for “Obama” on this blog and read the posts and comments about him written over the past year? You’ll find that he’s been appreciated for supporting secularism and science, slammed for pandering to religious intolerance, and criticized for his beliefs (though generally seen as the lesser evil on this front). Don’t come back until you’re all done.

    Oh, and: Barack Obama, as a Christian, stupidly believes in myths and fairy tales. There you go. Now STFU.

    The Voice of the Martyr’s Persecution Blog

    Is she saying the Martyr’s Persecution Blog has a voice? Which martyr are we talking about?

  200. #200 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 6, 2009

    Kevin do you know the whole story?

  201. #201 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    You took something that was considered holy by someone else and threw it in the trash. Regardless of anything else, that is a disrespectful thing to do.

    Here we go again…

    You do realise the reason it was done was because certain people felt that cracker was worth more than a man’s life, correct?

  202. #202 Brownian, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Real Christian persecution exists all over the world.

    True enough, and it’s horrendous that Christians are killed for their beliefs and affiliations, even if they’ve been on the doling out end of death for a large percentage of the last two millennia. (It’s horrendous that anyone is killed for their beliefs, but what’s a salvationist religion without unbelievers to demonise?)

    But what the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission is complaining about isn’t persecution: it’s criticism and parody. (That’s the problem with the martyr complex that Christianity and other faiths engender: you become so busy looking for examples of persecution to validate your faith that you’ll see getting the wrong change from the cashier at 7-11 as ‘proof’ of your Christ-like nature.)

    And lastly, thanks for the whine but if you people weren’t so fucking self-centred and really cared about all the lost sheep you’d be writing a blog about all real religious persecution, now wouldn’t you?

  203. #203 Longtime Lurker
    January 6, 2009

    Re:
    I haven’t seen one critique of Mr. Obama’s, Mr. Biden’s or Ms. Clinton’s publicly avowed religious beliefs in the lot.

    Stick around, numbnuts!

  204. #204 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    Thank you Kevin.

    Your concern is noted.

  205. #205 jimmiraybob
    January 6, 2009

    Perhaps I meant “just desserts.”

  206. #206 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Kevin, coming to hosts blog and calling him out on something is disrespectful too. Gee, you just committed a grave crime against Pharyngula, so we must do to you as your fellow cat-o-licks did to PZ. Good old golden rule in action. {/snark}
    Or maybe you need to tone it down a little. We don’t give a hoot about your uninformed opinion.

  207. #207 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Nerd of Redhead,

    Re; # 195

    “most of us recognize that to get elected to public office in almost all of the US, especially for higher office, candidate must publically proclaim belief in an imaginary deity.”

    Whoa! Wait a minute……are you saying, (writing), that Obama is lying when he publicly states his religious beliefs just to capture votes?

    Are you writing that he would compromise his integrity to satisfy his political ambitions? Sort of egotistical and self serving, wouldn’t you say?

    Are you certain that you don’t want to retract that statement?

  208. #208 Brownian, OM
    January 6, 2009

    I haven’t seen one critique of Mr. Obama’s, Mr. Biden’s or Ms. Clinton’s publicly avowed religious beliefs in the lot.

    Open your eyes then, fuckwit. Try googling ‘Obama’ and ‘religion’ in the search box at top left of this blog, you fucking troglodyte.

  209. #209 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    @Rev. BDC:

    Kevin do you know the whole story?

    You must be new here.

  210. #210 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 6, 2009

    I dare say that that the majority of the contributors voted and or supported Barry Hussein for President of the United States,

    Why are people so fucking hung up on his name? Really a lame tactic that displays a certain mindset.

  211. #211 Tulse
    January 6, 2009

    We don’t think that two guys getting married in California somehow diminishes our marriage in Alabama. We don’t think that Muslims are evil or that we are justified in… well pretty much anything the U.S. has done in the Middle East. We know that evolution is real and that dinosaur fossils weren’t “planted to test our faith”. We know that the universe is several billion years old.

    Good going! Almost there!

    We just think that God started the whole thing rolling

    Aw, so close!

  212. #212 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 6, 2009

    You must be new here.

    Is that directed at me?

  213. #213 DLC
    January 6, 2009

    I looked at the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission’s web page. It’s two guys. Two. and their delusion of grandeur.
    I’m not sure how they’re being oppressed.
    Apparently they define oppressed as “everyone does not bow down and bend the knee for us” ?

  214. #214 jimmiraybob
    January 6, 2009

    …you fucking troglodyte.

    Once again the poor innocent troglodyte has his character besmirched by association. Talk about your persecution.

  215. #215 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    @Rev BDC

    Is that directed at me?

    Sorry. Slashdot joke

  216. #216 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    Barack Obama, as a Christian, stupidly believes in myths and fairy tales. There you go. Now STFU. – SC, OM to Brute.

    Seconded.

    BTW, who the fuck is “Barry Hussein”?

  217. #217 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 6, 2009

    Ahh. Ok.

  218. #218 frog
    January 6, 2009

    Brute: Whoa! Wait a minute……are you saying, (writing), that Obama is lying when he publicly states his religious beliefs just to capture votes?
    Are you writing that he would compromise his integrity to satisfy his political ambitions? Sort of egotistical and self serving, wouldn’t you say?
    Are you certain that you don’t want to retract that statement?

    I know this may be hard for you to understand, but not everyone is an intellectually dishonest propagandist continually attempting to convert everyone, come hell or high water.

    I understand that for people in the evangelical milieu, it may seem that way — it’s about “winning souls”. But that is pure projection. In short, we’re not all scum-bags — it’s just you and your cohorts that are worthless excuses for minds.

  219. #219 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Whoa! Wait a minute……are you saying, (writing), that Obama is lying when he publicly states his religious beliefs just to capture votes?

    No, just saying if Obama were an atheist he’d have a hell of a hard time getting elected.

  220. #220 Alex
    January 6, 2009

    That’s final proof that these people have no fucking sense of humour. Or honesty. Or persecution, for that matter.

  221. #221 Ktesibios
    January 6, 2009

    CADC has determined that by any biblical and historic Christian standard, Barack Obama is not a Christian.

    Translation into plain English:

    God died and left us Boss< ./i>

  222. #222 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, you have warped the argument. And truly, any atheist would have to hide behind a facade of belief to get elected president these days. That’s just the way it is. Hopefully this will change in the future.

    I have no true idea of how much Obama believes or disbelieves. And quote mining him convinces me of nothing. I just know he shows signs of intelligence lacking in both his opponent and predecessor.

  223. #223 Rey Fox
    January 6, 2009

    “I dare say that that the majority of the contributors voted and or supported Barry Hussein for President of the United States, ”

    Aww, poor Brute. His Great White Hope was been defeated and now he has to be ruled over by a black president with a funny name. Please, everyone, forget the red herring religious argument and shed a tear for poor Brutus.

  224. #224 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, you lying racist moron, had an atheist comparable to Obama in terms of evident political skills and views had a chance of winning the Presidency, doubtless many of those here would have voted for him. There wasn’t one. So they voted for the best alternative. Got it now, fuckwit?

  225. #225 Alyson
    January 6, 2009

    “Barry Hussein” is the guy we recently elected POTUS. The rightwingnuts like to call him Hussein because apparently he asked to inherit his name from his apparently non-religious father, who, in turn, asked to receive his middle name from his father, just like he totally demanded that said father convert to Islam. In fact, while we’re at it, what actually happened was that Senator Obama went back in time and traveled to Kenya and demanded that his paternal grandfather become a Muslim, just so the Senator from Illinois could inherit the middle name of Hussein and become a walking dog-whistle for Islamist crazies all over the world.

    Anyway. I tend to agree with Seed’s endorsement of Obama. I don’t agree with everything the man’s ever said, particularly regarding theistic religion. For example, his rather wishy-washy statement on same-sex marriage–which, incidentally, the wingnuts thought was way too liberal!–struck me as, “Wrong answer, Senator!” If he says he’s a Christian, I will assume he is telling the truth. His general attitude towards science is what really matters. If he thinks like a skeptic and governs like a scientist, I don’t have a problem with him going to church on Sundays.

  226. #226 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Nerd,

    “And truly, any atheist would have to hide behind a facade of belief to get elected president these days. That’s just the way it is.”

    You have such high standards…..I applaud you.

    I seem to have created quite a stir among the Obama sycophants…..I’m so ashamed.

  227. #227 Kate
    January 6, 2009

    No, Brute, you haven’t “created a stir”. You’ve simply shown yourself to be a dishonest and rather silly person.

  228. #228 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, no you are just a troll out for a little fun. In politics, I never say “not that guy” without looking at the opponent. Because the opponent may be even worse.

    As to Obama’s god beliefs, I have never met the man, so I have no idea what they are. But his politics are much better than his opponent and predecessor. You don’t get that, but then you are an ignorant troll.

  229. #229 gwangung
    January 6, 2009

    Saying that you “threw a cracker in the trash” is disingenuous. You took something that was considered holy by someone else and threw it in the trash. Regardless of anything else, that is a disrespectful thing to do.

    But disrepesct is not persecution.

    And equating disrespect with persecution is an order of magnitude more disingenous still…..

  230. #230 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    I haven’t seen one critique of Mr. Obama’s, Mr. Biden’s or Ms. Clinton’s publicly avowed religious beliefs in the lot.

    FAIL
    That’s only because you haven’t been doing your research. From this site,

    The Obama Failing

    So let’s be clear here: I despise Obama’s faith. I think it has the potential to be a major hindrance to any accomplishments of an Obama administration, and I worry that it would further promote the desecularization of our government. If Obama is elected, I will not be a cheerleader, but a constant critic.

    Why I will never vote for Barack Obama

    If a liberal Democratic politician wants to buy into the foolish idea that Christians can’t accept evolution, that it’s a good thing that more Americans believe in this insane nonsense about angels than in science, then he has lost my vote. I won’t even get into the rest of his paean to the silly goblins of faith.

    There is also a blog post titled “Obama’s religions is the problem”. I’d keep going, but then I think my comment would be held in moderation for some many links. I think you get the point anyway.

    Do some research before you make claims.

  231. #231 BlueIndependent
    January 6, 2009

    “I seem to have created quite a stir among the Obama sycophants…”

    You place much too high an importance on anything you’ve posted. Non-factual statements and opinions get corrected around here. An Obama supporter who places intellectual weight in his “being The One” would garner about as much derision as the considerably dumber Bush-frothing and Bible-fawning conservatives that come on here and try to strut about in their yellow feathers or mock concern and vacuous emotionalism.

    Regardless of what you’ve convinced yourself you need to believe – based largely on what other people have to you you must believe in – Obama is not an atheist. The argument that he is has been steamrolled with video, audio, and literary evidence a myriad of times. About as many times as the claim that he’s actually a closeted Muslim, and/or that he’s the demon seed engineered by Illuminati types over the course of the twentieth century into a communistic Manchurian candidate set for world domination (this last one a fanciful product of Freepertown, USA). My expectation is that you, Brute, will commit to memory the refutations of your fatuous claim, and seek to better your own mind. Here’s hoping you do, without actually betting you will.

  232. #232 KnockGoats
    January 6, 2009

    Do some research before you make claims. Feynmaniac, to Brute

    Come now, Feynmaniac, Brute’s a conservative! Paying attention to the facts would be against his principles.

  233. #233 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Come now, Feynmaniac, Brute’s a conservative! Paying attention to the facts would be against his principles.

    Or refering to any source outside of the right wing pundits.

  234. #234 Rebecca
    January 6, 2009

    Reading that list gave me a flashback to my parochial high school. Once one of the pastor-teachers was talking about the persecution of Christians in contemporary culture (this was the 80s) and the example he gave was people staring at him and his family when they bowed their heads to pray over their meals at restaurants. How awful for them! To have their attention-begging behavior noticed, oh dear! I wonder what he thought should have happened–everyone else in the restaurant, overcome by the sight of their holiness, should have asked him to lead them in prayer, perhaps. This was the same guy who wouldn’t let his children celebrate Halloween because it was “papist”…or pagan…or both. Persecution of persons of any faith–or of no faith–is reprehensible, but for American Christians persecution=not getting their own way 100% of the time.

  235. #235 jimmiraybob
    January 6, 2009

    Real Christian persecution exists all over the world. I write about it every day over on The Voice of the Martyr’s Persecution Blog… – Stacy Harp (#188)

    So, I checked out your blog. You have a posting [Eritrea - Approximately 100 Christians Arrested: by Mary-Sue Leigh (January 5, 2009)] regarding Christian persecution by the government in Eritria. The tone of the story is that to be a Christian in Eritria you face severe prosecution from an evil and presumably secular government. Yet a little Googling reveals a more complicated picture.

    As is noted in this BBC report, “The crackdown on Eritrea’s minority churches followed a government announcement in May 2002 that only its four oldest faiths – Orthodox, Catholic, Lutheran and Islam – would receive official sanction.”

    And from a Christian ministry site, “Listed by Freedom House as one of the world’s most repressive regimes, the government of President Isayas Afewerki only recognizes four ‘official’ religions: Orthodox Christian, Muslim, Catholic and Evangelical Lutheran..”

    It would appear that not all Christians are being singled out and that the recipients of true persecution are, …independent Pentecostal and charismatic churches…”

    This paints a completely different picture than a government blindly persecuting Christians for their faith and suggests other more sectarian causes. Are Pentecostal and Charismatic evangelizers threatening the stability of the government or of the established churches? Not that it makes much difference to those being detained or tortured (assuming these reports to be true, and I have no reason to doubt it at this time).

    The US State Department currently has no warnings or alerts specifically regarding Christians traveling to Eritrea.

    Perhaps you should contact the Christian Orthodox Church, or the Lutherans, or the Catholic Church there to see what’s up. I just assume you might be averse to contacting an Islamic mosque – sorry if I underestimate.

    Again, this appears to be a story of persecution but not of the Christian Faith or Islamic Faith. I just picked this story to check because I thought that there would be enough outside-sourced information to get a broader picture. Maybe you have more details to share?

    In my humble opinion this is the kind of dishonest, or semi-honest, tactic that is meant to arouse the sense of general persecution of the faithful by the infidel and atheist in order to establish and feed a martyr complex – I assume this helps also with the donations.

  236. #236 Hambydammit
    January 6, 2009

    What a crock. Does anyone else notice how Christians elevate the art of equivocation to heights most politicians wouldn’t dream? I mean… really? Mocking is the same as persecution?

    I’m a big believer in using the correct words, and let’s be honest. A fifteen percent minority with one representative in Congress is flatly incapable of persecuting the ruling majority.

  237. #237 jimmiraybob
    January 6, 2009

    As a side note to my previous comment I’d like to point out that all Christians should wholeheartedly support separation of church and state lest you find yourself on the downside of being sanctioned.

    End of PSA

  238. #238 Kevin Camp
    January 6, 2009

    Nerd of Redhead: Calling someone out on something is not disrespectul. Notice I didn’t say anything about Bill Maher’s skewering of the Catholic church over the way it handled the sex abuse scandal. You could argue that say he’s “just being a dick” is disrespectful language, and you would be right, so I apologize.

    gwangung: I never said that disrespect equalled persecution. You will notice that I did not try to say that the idiots who wrote the “top 10 christian bashings” list were in any way right. They are morons and they don’t speak for anyone other than themselves.

    To the people who wondered if I know the whole story behind him throwing the Eucharist in the trash: no I didn’t, so I googled it. The people who threatened the student in Florida were wrong for doing so. But that doesn’t justify what Professor Myers did. He was trying to stick up for someone else who was being disrespectful by being disrespectful himself? Trying to teach tolerance by being hateful? Sorry, I don’t get it.

  239. #239 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Kevin, then PZ was calling out cat-o-licks. And that makes it OK. Whatever logic you use to avoid your actions, PZ can us the same logic. Either fess up or shut up.

  240. #240 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Sorry, I don’t get it.

    Obviously not.

    The point from the whole ordeal is that human life is far more sacred than any “symbol”, and sometimes it’s important to do something to remind people of that. Like a protester burning the flag. Yes it’s disrespectful, but doing so is a reminder that no symbol should be above the lives of people.

  241. #241 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    I consider it disrespectful when I must give a cracker more consideration than a person like the Redhead. So Kevin, you are dissing me. What will you do about it?

  242. #242 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Kevin is being entirely disrespectful to others by saying that non-Catholics have to abide to Catholic tradition. How is it any different to a Muslim saying that women dressing in miniskirts is disrespectful to Allah? (I believe the phrase is “dress them like whores”)

    Just how far does one have to go to be ‘respectful’ to a culture / tradition they don’t adhere to?

  243. #243 Bill
    January 6, 2009

    Kevin Camp: “I wouldn’t come into your office, take something that was important to you, even if it was meaningless to me, and throw it in the trash. I wouldn’t steal a copy of the Koran, a statue of Buddha or even your FSM poster and throw it in the garbage.”

    Why must you be dishonest? He did not steal anything. Does Jesus demand that his followers make idiotic and dishonest analogies?

  244. #244 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    In science, the burden of proof is always on those making the claim.

    I suppose this claim requires proof in itself.

    So the burden of proof is upon you to demostrate evidence for your imaginary god.

    And the burden of proof is on you to prove I have the burden of proof.

    Now either show the physical evidence for your god that will pass muster with scientists, magicians and professional debunkers, or acknowldege you have no proof and should shut up.

    Why must the evidence be physical?Please demonstrate that it must be.

    The negative can’t be proven, which is why nobody but the reigiots like yourself keep asking for that.

    Read this (its written by an atheist)
    http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/richard_carrier/theory.html
    His conclusion

    I know the myth of “you can’t prove a negative” circulates throughout the nontheist community, and it is good to dispel myths whenever we can. As it happens, there really isn’t such a thing as a “purely” negative statement, because every negative entails a positive, and vice versa.

  245. #245 Kevin Camp
    January 6, 2009

    Kel,
    Why? If there is no God,no creator, no afterlife, no higher purpose, then why is human life more important than a cracker? On the galactic scale, is a person really any more important than a dog, a cracker, or even an electron? If the every person on the planet was wiped out by an asteroid colliding with Earth tomorrow, the rest of the universe wouldn’t so much as shrug, so why is a single person more important than a cracker?

  246. #246 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    In science, the burden of proof is always on those making the claim.

    I suppose this claim requires proof in itself.

    So the burden of proof is upon you to demostrate evidence for your imaginary god.

    And the burden of proof is on you to prove I have the burden of proof.

    Now either show the physical evidence for your god that will pass muster with scientists, magicians and professional debunkers, or acknowldege you have no proof and should shut up.

    Why must the evidence be physical?Please demonstrate that it must be.

    The negative can’t be proven, which is why nobody but the reigiots like yourself keep asking for that.

    Read this (its written by an atheist)
    http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/richard_carrier/theory.html
    His conclusion

    I know the myth of “you can’t prove a negative” circulates throughout the nontheist community, and it is good to dispel myths whenever we can. As it happens, there really isn’t such a thing as a “purely” negative statement, because every negative entails a positive, and vice versa.

  247. #247 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    Then, instead of the plain stupid, he’d have got the fancy stupid.

    Come on . hose Christians are some of the greatest minds that ever lived

  248. #248 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis, you are a liar and bullshitter until you provide evidence for your imaginary god. Your avoidance in doing so tells everything an intelligent person, and the people who are regulars here are highly intelligent, needs to know about your relationship to the truth. There is none. Now, you can recover some integrity by acknowledging you have no evidence for your deity.

  249. #249 Steve_C
    January 6, 2009

    Once again Facilis shows he’s not familiar with logic.

    And Kevin Camp shows he doesn’t know the difference between tolerance and respect.

    I tolerate things everyday for which I have no respect for. It’s easy to do.

    Religion is utter bullshit, but I tolerate its existence. And they shoudl tolerate my opinion, they don’t have to respect it. I don’t expect them to.

  250. #250 raven
    January 6, 2009

    stacy being dishonest:

    Real Christian persecution exists all over the world. I write about it every day over on The Voice of the Martyr’s Persecution Blog at

    Well, that is true worldwide. The xian anti-defamation kooks were referring to the USA. A country where 78% of the population is xian and where they persecute groups on a daily bais. Lately it has been the democrats, liberals, atheists, Moslems, gays, scientists, and MDs.

    The main group persecuting xians in the USA is …..other xians. Xian sectarian warfare has a long, very bloody history and died out in N. Ireland a whole 8 years ago. Nowadays they don’t fill the streets with blood and bodies because the majority of the population is sick of religious violence and the government took away their armies and weapons.

    Although the USA still has a current problem with homicidal religious terrorists, the xians and occasionally moslem fundies. Sectarian xian violence today in the USA is mostly at the level of lies, accusations, excommunications, insults, and general bigotry and discrimination.

  251. #251 facilis
    January 6, 2009

    @Pat

    Stein studiously avoided being fair and did not allow for legitimate from any leading intellectuals.

    *fundie atheist impression*
    Blasphemy!!! Richard Dawkins was in that movie

  252. #252 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis, fundamentalist Xians are some of the worst minds out there. Get of your high horse about religion and face reality. You are making a hash of whatever your point is for posting here.

  253. #253 Patricia, OM
    January 6, 2009

    #182 – Bill Dauphin – By golly, you’re right! Space Station. Now somebody is going to chime in and tell me NASA doesn’t use Tang anymore. *snort*

    The basic part of my taunting the dork is still good. Humans have been in ‘heaven’ far too long now to have missed god, or any gods for that matter, if they were there.

  254. #254 Neuroskeptic
    January 6, 2009

    “If there is no God,no creator, no afterlife, no higher purpose, then why is human life more important than a cracker?”

    That’s an exact parallel to the old, and famously rubbish, “Who caused the universe” cosmological argument for God. The refutation is “Who caused God?”

    Who made human life good? God? – then who made God good? If there WERE a Creator, how would that make any difference to how important human life is?

    Either human life is important, Creator or not, in which case, atheists are fine. OR, human life is only important because the Creator says so, in which case “important” and “good” are defined by what the Creator says are good, but this leaves it unexplained why the Creator, or his judgement, should be taken as important or good.

    If you want to believe in God, go ahead, I’m sure you have your reasons. but if you come to Pharyngula of all places, this is what happens…

  255. #255 CJO
    January 6, 2009

    On the galactic scale, is a person really any more important than a dog, a cracker, or even an electron?

    Perhaps not. But why should we humans care about matters on a galactic scale?

  256. #256 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    fundie atheist impression

    How do you do an impression of something that doesn’t exist?

  257. #257 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    Surely a universe with an all powerful being that intervenes in events would look very different that one that doesn’t have such a being. Yet, you can’t produce a shred of evidence.

    I do think there is a fair bit of evidence. However Redhead is being overly anal about limiting what kind of evidence I can produce. I was just having fun at his expense

  258. #258 Patricia, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis are you actually proud of that website? It looks like I tried to make one. That is a dire insult, and meant to be.
    Why are you wasting your time here when you could be fixing that full of bullshit mess?

  259. #259 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Why? If there is no God,no creator, no afterlife, no higher purpose, then why is human life more important than a cracker?

    Do you really need me to answer this question?

    Why do we value our own lives? Why do we value the lives of others? Why is it we can kill other life to survive (Indeed we must kill to survive) but cannibalism is taboo? Meaning in life is not given by as magic sky daddy, meaning in life comes from within. We have evolved a sense of empathy, a sense of protection, we have moved to such a state that the survival instinct of ourself projects onto those around us. We are a social creature, our survival depends on us working in groups.

    So why do we value the lives of others? Because it’s the way we are able to properly value our own lives. If you found out tomorrow that there was no God, would you kill yourself? If you answer no to this, then you should understand why we value life.

    On the galactic scale, is a person really any more important than a dog, a cracker, or even an electron?

    Why are you looking on a galactic scale? Your life begins on one planet, it lasts for around 80 cycles of that planet around a star and then you die. Ultimately in the scheme of things the sun will explode, the earth will be inside the sun and all living material on this planet will cease to be. But that’s not for another 5 billion years, by which you would be long dead and most probably the human race will be long extinct.

    Working on a galactic scale is as absurd as working on the molecular scale to categorise humans. We are just atoms arranged in a certain manner, powered by the sun and other life. But we can do something that a cracker can not – we can create life through our direct intervention. We can also feel pain, we can see the suffering in others and feel suffering in ourself. We also have the ability to reason, to make wise choices; we are homo sapien.

    Our brains are wired to be able to communicate, to form relationships and bonds with others: both human and non-human. Our brains are also wired to survive, to help the survival of our genetic code. One of the best survival strategies is groups working together: we see this all the time through nature, whether it’s the interplay of multicellular objects with each cell performing it’s own task, or collectives of cells working together like we see throughout the animal kingdom. Working together works.

  260. #260 Don't Panic
    January 6, 2009

    ctygesen, you almost killed me with:

    So, which tone does Facilis @ #135 project most

    “I got bupkis!”

    I’ve got a chest cold and I practically coughed up a lung laughing so hard.

  261. #261 Steve_C
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis, how dense are you?

    http://www.expelledexposed.com/index.php/background

    Do try to catch up.

  262. #262 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    @Emmet

    What I would’ve said instead is that all existential claims require empirical evidence.

    Why limit it to empirical evidence?

    That is, if you say “X exists”, then it is up to you to provide evidence for that; the default position must be that X is assumed not to exist until there is evidence that it does.

    Please demonstrate that this is the default position.

    To waive this requirement is to admit, by default, the existence of all things that may be imagined to exist and require the “disproof” of them: leprechauns, fairies, unicorns, orcs, and goblins, etc.
    .

    It seems obvious to me that you are making a kind of category error. These things (unicorns ,flyng teapots..etc) are things formed by and cntingent on the universe. When the theist makes a claim of god he is claiming the universe is contingent on God.

  263. #263 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis, still trying to evade showing your evidence for your imaginary deity. Your evasions look very desperate. Time to go away as you have lost any credibility that you hoped to establish.

  264. #264 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    Kel, #259

    Well put. I always find it difficult to answer that particular question, because to me it pertains to the sort of obvious understanding of the world that everyone has (or, at least, they should have – I suspect those asking it to be obtuse rather than ignorant); being asked it is much like ‘why do we like things that taste nice?’

  265. #265 Steve_C
    January 6, 2009

    Erm. Facilis quick question…

    “When the theist makes a claim of god he is claiming the universe is contingent on God.”

    Can you show that the universe exists without assuming there’s a god?

  266. #266 Facilis
    January 6, 2009

    Why’d Steve_C link me to Expelled? I haven’t seen the movie.

  267. #267 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis, if you assume that the regulars are at least two steps ahead of you, that would be correct.

  268. #268 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    If you found out tomorrow that there was no God, would you kill yourself? If you answer no to this, then you should understand why we value life.

    I guess I should make this point a bit clearer. It would be important to ask yourself “what do you value in your life?” Do you value your friends? Your family? Do you value human interaction at all? Do you value the ability to learn? To communicate with others? Do you value the activities you do? Do you enjoy watching / playing sports? Do you value the fine taste of a good meal? Or the value of an exquisite wine? Do you value music or movies? Are you an avid reader? Or is the only value you see in life God?

    The point is that we attribute value as part of the human condition, so regardless of whether God is the only thing you value, it should be non-controversial that humans value things. It should also be non-controversial to say that humans value their own life, and those immediately around them. From that we’ve extended a system of rights that put human life and human dignity at the forefront of any moral or legal code.

  269. #269 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    It seems obvious to me that you are making a kind of category error. These things (unicorns ,flyng teapots..etc) are things formed by and cntingent on the universe. When the theist makes a claim of god he is claiming the universe is contingent on God.

    That’s a dodge. The point NoR is making is that we don’t have evidence unicorns or flying teapots don’t exist, and – according to your logic – we have to believe in them until we do. Whether the universe is contingent on your God (or any god for that matter) is irrelevant to that question.

    Stop evading.

  270. #270 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Well put. I always find it difficult to answer that particular question, because to me it pertains to the sort of obvious understanding of the world that everyone has (or, at least, they should have – I suspect those asking it to be obtuse rather than ignorant); being asked it is much like ‘why do we like things that taste nice?’

    Completely agree. It’s entirely obvious but difficult to put into words. It’s really asking the wrong question, because the why is easy to answer – we value life because humans are wired for their own survival. It’s the how that’s the real question there, how did humans get that wiring in the first place? And thanks to Darwin (and Wallace) we have a means of explanation.

  271. #271 Danny
    January 6, 2009

    Damn, we could be much nastier than that. I guess we aren’t trying hard enough.

    On a more serious note, it would be interesting to assess the importance of a persecution complex in fostering a sense of community. Too many religions seem to believe that “us v. them” is much more cohesive than “us and them.”

  272. #272 'Tis Himself
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis #266

    Why’d Steve_C link me to Expelled? I haven’t seen the movie.

    You made the statement that Richard Dawkins was in Expelled. Steve_C’s link wasn’t to the movie but rather to a website called Expelled Exposed.

    If you can’t keep up, take notes.

  273. #273 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    Something I’ve occasionally wondered – why didn’t God instill in us an urge to believe in and worship him?

  274. #274 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    Facilis the Child Murderer Sympathizer Defender Worshiper (see here ),

    I do think there is a fair bit of evidence. However Redhead is being overly anal about limiting what kind of evidence I can produce. I was just having fun at his expense

    Fine, what’s your evidence?

  275. #275 SC, OM
    January 6, 2009

    Fine, what’s your evidence?

    I hope it’s better than auras. Or not – that was funny.

  276. #276 ifeelfine72
    January 6, 2009

    This is the CADC’s effort to create an enemy where none really exists. Its kind of hard to rally the troops when there is nothing to rally around.

  277. #277 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    @facilis

    Why limit it to empirical evidence?

    One is valid epistemology, the other isn’t

    Please demonstrate that this is the default position.

    Because it works, bitches.

    When the theist makes a claim of god he is claiming the universe is contingent on God.

    And he’s wrong.

  278. #278 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Fine, what’s your evidence?

    I hope it’s better than auras. Or not – that was funny.

    Yes, that was funny.

    Feynmaniac,

    This is probably pointless as you seem to have a bias toward religion in general, but here it goes……….

    The evidence is everywhere; look around you. Your life is a miracle. A new born baby is a miracle. The existence of the solar system, the galaxy…..the Universe is a miracle. A seed germinating growing into a 100′ tall tree is a miracle.

    Atheism relies on the premise that nothing can become something without some sort of intelligent intervention.

    This computer was designed and built by an intelligent Being assembling numerous components in a systematic fashion to create a working, functioning device.

    Do you actually believe that something far more complex as the processes involved to create and maintain the human body, a “system” that initiates and completes millions of functions every second simply came to being without some sort of plan, blueprint or thought process?

  279. #279 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Where did Kevin Camp go? I thought he would at least tried to argue that I’m wrong.

  280. #280 Twin-Skies
    January 6, 2009

    I spotted a couple of typos in the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission’s (CADC) statement. Here’s a corrected version:

    It is time for the non-Christian bashing to stop and for non-Christians to no longer be treated like second-class citizens.

    There – it’s more accurate now.

    I forgot who said this, but given a Christian fundie’s perspective, even Jesus would be unacceptable: He’s from the Middle-East, he’s anti-organized religion, and he’s a Jew.

  281. #281 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    @Brute

    Atheism relies on the premise that nothing can become something without some sort of intelligent intervention.

    What?

    Of your many failings, you also apparently cannot tell your ass from your ontology.

    Which atheist argues for intelligent design?

    Argumentatshun. Ur doin it rong.

  282. #282 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Your life is a miracle.

    My life is a result of my parents doing it. And given that people have sex all the time, it’s not really miraculous.

    A new born baby is a miracle.

    Again, it happens all the time.

    The existence of the solar system, the galaxy…..the Universe is a miracle.

    Nope, it’s just an expression of the laws of physics.

    A seed germinating growing into a 100′ tall tree is a miracle.

    Nope, it’s evolution baby.

    Atheism relies on the premise that nothing can become something without some sort of intelligent intervention.

    So does theism. Otherwise, where did God come from?

    The fact is that there are naturalistic processes to explain so much of life. Solar system formation doesn’t need divine intervention, it just needed gravity. The creation of life doesn’t need divine intervention, it’s again a naturalistic process probably involving hydrothermal events. The change and diversity of life can fully be explained by evolution. No intelligence required.

    This computer was designed and built by an intelligent Being assembling numerous components in a systematic fashion to create a working, functioning device

    And where did that designer come from? Turns out that designer was made by the designer’s parents having sex. Just like their parents, all the way back until life is just a primitive cell. The problem with saying that a design must need a designer is that the designer must need one too.

    Do you actually believe that something far more complex as the processes involved to create and maintain the human body, a “system” that initiates and completes millions of functions every second simply came to being without some sort of plan, blueprint or thought process?

    It’s called evolution.

  283. #283 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    Atheism relies on the premise that nothing can become something without some sort of intelligent intervention.

    Wrong! It does nothing of the sort. Atheism is purely the absence of belief in gods.

    Epic fail.

  284. #284 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, massive fail. Show physical evidence for god (the designer) that will be confirmed by scientists, magicians, and professional debunkers as being of divine origin, or get off the designer bit. Put up real (not witnessed like you did) evidence. Welcome to science. Not for wimps or liars.

  285. #285 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    Do you actually believe that something far more complex as the processes involved to create and maintain the human body, a “system” that initiates and completes millions of functions every second simply came to being without some sort of plan, blueprint or thought process?

    Someone hasn’t been reading his Stuart Kauffman before bed.

    Tsk, tsk.

  286. #286 Twin-Skies
    January 6, 2009

    The CADC failed to detail that before PZ’s actions, the kid in the crackergate incident was threatened with violence and expulsion, and was almost lynched by the church congregation. For what? Trying to show the Holy Eucharist to a curious friend. Where was the CADC when this happened?

  287. #287 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    The evidence is everywhere; look around you. Your life is a miracle. A new born baby is a miracle. The existence of the solar system, the galaxy…..the Universe is a miracle. A seed germinating growing into a 100′ tall tree is a miracle.

    None of those is any more a miracle than any other natural phenomenon. Do you consider it a miracle that when you’re holding a pencil in your hand and you let it go it hits the ground*? Oh your god! It’s a miracle!

    You know what’d be a real miracle? A religidiot coming up with a decent argument.

    *Assuming you’re not in zero gravity, of course.

  288. #288 Kevin Camp
    January 6, 2009

    Kel: Well put. No, I didn’t need you to answer that, I was just curious what your response would be. Also, as to the analogy about flag-burning, there is a slight difference. If you go and buy a flag yourself, or otherwise ethically obtain it, and then burn it, then that is perfectly acceptable. However, if you steal the flag from the capital building, or take a flag that was given to you by someone who cherished it, with the understanding that you would take care of it, and then you burned it, that would not acceptable.

  289. #289 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Why is it that those who say the universe needs a cause in order to exist, but the cause they posit for the universe doesn’t need a cause? If they are going to violate their own principle of argument, what’s to say that the universe needs need a cause? Why can’t the universe simply be?

  290. #290 John Morales
    January 6, 2009

    Brute:

    The evidence is everywhere; look around you. Your life is a miracle. A new born baby is a miracle. The existence of the solar system, the galaxy…..the Universe is a miracle. A seed germinating growing into a 100′ tall tree is a miracle.

    Got it.

    “Miracle” is a synonym for “ordinary”.
    Quotidian things are miracles.

    So… What word do you use for putative impossible events that contradict our understanding of nature and of causation?

  291. #291 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    However, if you steal the flag from the capital building, or take a flag that was given to you by someone who cherished it, with the understanding that you would take care of it, and then you burned it, that would not acceptable.

    You do realise that no-one stole a communion wafer right? PZ didn’t steal it, the person who sent it to PZ didn’t steal it, it was freely given. No-one stole anything. A better analogy would be that a jingoist was given a flag by another jingoist, then later on that jingoist lost their unwavering belief in the flag but never got rid of it. Then the flag was sent to someone asking for a flag to burn.

    It’s important to understand that no-one stole anything. Yes it was intolerant of Catholic beliefs, but so what? It’s like saying that a non-Muslim could have to wear a burka in the presence of Muslim men.

  292. #292 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    However, if you steal the flag from the capital building, or take a flag that was given to you by someone who cherished it, with the understanding that you would take care of it, and then you burned it, that would not acceptable.

    Did you read all the posts on those threads? There are about 30,000 – you must be a very fast reader.

    The crackers were not stolen, taken from someone who cherished them, nor given to him by anyone who expected him to ‘take care of it’ – not in the sense you mean, anyway. IIRC, a former catholic who had kept a cracker obtained during his/her pre-rational days sent it to him knowing full well what he was intending to do with it.

    Besides, ‘cherished’? Please remind us exactly what is supposed to happen to the cracker after the magic religious ceremony?

  293. #293 Twin-Skies
    January 6, 2009

    The way I’ve come to understand it, a miracle is a personal perspective of an otherwise scientifically explainable process.

    It’s opinion rather than fact.

  294. #294 'Tis Himself
    January 6, 2009

    Kel #289

    Why is it that those who say the universe needs a cause in order to exist, but the cause they posit for the universe doesn’t need a cause?

    It’s called special pleading and is a logical fallacy.

  295. #295 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Kevin, still not getting it. The cracker was given to PZ by a catholic knowing that it would be desecrated. No fraud whatsoever on PZ’s part. And the person whose cracker PZ used had it in their possession for many years. Many catholics acknowledged doing many things to crackers including stealing them. Just get off the whole idea that anything was wrong. In bad taste, maybe, wrong in any legal/ethical sense, no.

  296. #296 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Do you consider it a miracle that when you’re holding a pencil in your hand and you let it go it hits the ground*?

    No; however, the process allows gravity to exist is a miracle.

    Wowbagger/Kel,

    Another question:

    As an Atheist, (I assume you are an Atheist), how do you differenciate between right and wrong? What is the basis of your moral code?

  297. #297 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    the process allows gravity to exist is a miracle.

    Massive fail. According to present theories the exchange of gravitons. No god needed, ever. Science ignores god. Science and religion divorced a couple of centuries ago. Science will not go back.

    What is the basis of your moral code?

    Ever hear of doing unto others like you want them to do unto you? It’s a good start. And atheists use it unlike xians.

  298. #298 'Tis Himself
    January 6, 2009

    As an Atheist, (I assume you are an Atheist), how do you differenciate between right and wrong? What is the basis of your moral code?

    Ever heard of the Golden Rule, also called the ethic of reciprocity? The concept predates Christianity.

  299. #299 John Morales
    January 6, 2009

    [Wowbagger/Kel] As an Atheist, (I assume you are an Atheist), how do you differenciate between right and wrong? What is the basis of your moral code?

    What a weird question.

    Do you think the only way to differenciate right and wrong is to check against some list?

    As an atheist, I use empathy, rationality and experience to differenciate between right and wrong. I’ll consider others’ opinions on ethics in addition to my own musings, and modify my views over time.

    And I judge each case on its merits, rather than according to some dogma.

  300. #300 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    Brute wrote:

    No; however, the process allows gravity to exist is a miracle.

    You keep using that word. I don’t think it means what you think it means.

    If absolutely everything is a miracle then a miracle is, in and of itself, worthless. If every second rock on the Earth was made out of gold do you think humans would value gold as much as they do?

    how do you differenciate between right and wrong?

    The exact same way you do, for the most part – as a result of learning and socialisation.

    The difference is that I know that morals/ethics are the result of thousands of years of human social evolution (i.e. we learned not to be horrible to each other because it meant we had less chance of being killed out of retribution), while you think yours are commanded by your god.

    What is the basis of your moral code?

    I don’t know if it has a ‘basis’, as such. Pretty much comes down to the ‘golden rule’, as it is known.

  301. #301 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Is my Moral Code valid?

  302. #302 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    Brute,

    This is probably pointless as you seem to have a bias toward religion in general, but here it goes……….

    If you can indeed provide good evidence I would change my mind about the existence of God. Can you say the same?

    The evidence is everywhere; look around you. Your life is a miracle. A new born baby is a miracle. The existence of the solar system, the galaxy…..the Universe is a miracle. A seed germinating growing into a 100′ tall tree is a miracle.

    Please go get a dictionary and look up what ‘evidence’ means.

    Do you actually believe that something far more complex as the processes involved to create and maintain the human body, a “system” that initiates and completes millions of functions every second simply came to being without some sort of plan, blueprint or thought process?

    So in order to explain something as complex as the human body you assume a creator even MORE complex? This doesn’t solve the problem, it only raises an even harder problem to solve.

    Also, this is simply an argument from personal incredulity. Very complex processes contain arise without any plan or blue print (see Rule 110 ).

    Oh, and did you see #230 where I provided you examples of people criticizing Obama’s religion?

  303. #303 John Morales
    January 6, 2009

    Wowbagger, for all practical purposes, religous ritual = magic ritual. (cf. [D&D] Clerics:Magic-Users)

    The main difference, as I see it, is that magic rituals are expected to actually have some effect. ;)

  304. #304 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Is my Moral Code valid?

    You haven’t explained your personal moral code, so we can’t say much.

    Biblical moral code is partially good, partially bad. For example, if you are wearing a cotton/polyester shirt by strict biblical codes we must stone you to death. Bad. The bible condones slavery. Bad. It is too much only be nice only to our group and treat everybody else badly. Bad. The words of Jesus tried to make the nice more universal. Good. Paul was terrible to women. Bad. (Don’t think atheists haven’t read the bible, as reading the bible in total is often the first step toward atheism.)

  305. #305 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Oh, and did you see #230 where I provided you examples of people criticizing Obama’s religion?

    Feynmaniac,

    Yes, I stand corrected…………

    I really am interested in this Atheist belief system….seriously. Please remember I stumbled across this site accidentally and my views are opposite of everyone on this thread…..sort of like 1 among thousands…..getting it from all sides. I post one comment and then have to retort 6 or 7. Bear with me.

  306. #306 John Morales
    January 6, 2009

    Brute:

    Is my Moral Code valid?

    Validity applies to arguments, not to ideologies.

    The question you should ask is “Is my Moral Code ethical?”

    If you’re a Christian, I’d say no.

  307. #307 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    As an Atheist, (I assume you are an Atheist), how do you differenciate between right and wrong? What is the basis of your moral code?

    As an atheist, I know the difference between right and wrong the same way as what you do: our genes are programmed to act a certain way, combined with the way our brain forms memories thoughts and processes. Morality is the product of repeated interaction on a social scale that over time has become part of our nature. Hell you can even train dogs in terms of right and wrong.

    Do you know actually anything about science, or is your understanding of reality limited to “Goddidit”?

    No; however, the process allows gravity to exist is a miracle.

    How did gravity come to exist? If you know, please tell the scientists at the Large Hadron Collider just what to look for because what causes gravity is still a mystery.

  308. #308 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    I really am interested in this Atheist belief system….seriously.

    Quite simply, there is no “atheist belief system.” Atheism isn’t a belief system, it’s simply that one does not believe in a any god. That’s it, no major or minor tenets, no codes for behaviour, no explanation of the universe, it’s simply non-belief in the theistic sense.

  309. #309 mothra
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, come forward, I see you, like millions of other coming forward to declare their atheism. If you are here with friends, they’ll wait. If you are with your parents, they’ll wait. There is only one true path to atheism, it’s not by good works, your deeds mean nothing, it is simply. . .(wait for it). ..(wait for it) . . .non-belief in gods.

  310. #310 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    I really am interested in this Atheist belief system….seriously

    First thing you need to do is acknowledge the truth – that it isn’t a ‘belief system’. We simply lack belief in gods. That does not mean that atheism, in and of itself, replaces religion as a system of belief.

    and my views are opposite of everyone on this thread

    That’s a big problem. Do you murder people? Do you torture kittens? If you don’t then your views are not the opposite of everyone on this thread.

    What you also you have to do is realise that most atheists, for practical purposes, live our lives in almost exactly the same way as the majority of Christians do – the only difference being that when we’re asked ‘do you believe in God?’ we answer ‘no’ rather than ‘yes’.

    The very idea that atheism makes for an unhappy, immoral, hate-filled lifestyle is one of the worst lies perpetuated by the fearful religious out there, those are so offended that we can live our lives differently from theirs and still be content.

    Don’t, as they say, believe the hype.

  311. #311 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    Brute,

    As an Atheist, (I assume you are an Atheist), how do you differenciate between right and wrong? What is the basis of your moral code?

    There’s this poster I’ve seen in a few places that shows how all the major religions have some sort of version of the golden rule. The poster fails to realize that this doesn’t have anything real to do with religion, but with human beings. Humans have an innate moral code, similar to the instinctive rules that underlie all language. Sure there are variations from culture to culture, but there are some common features in all of them.

    It would actually be surprising if humans didn’t have some sort of hard wiring for how to behave with one another. We are a social creature and in order to have a functioning society there’s got to be some basic rules. Morality doesn’t seem to be limited to humans. Apes show some an ability for altruism. To see a better explanation of this then I can provide see here .

    Yes, I stand corrected…………

    Well, you’re honest enough to admit you were mistaken. Seriously, too often people can’t admit they were wrong and they just come across as insecure. Kudos.

    I post one comment and then have to retort 6 or 7. Bear with me.

    Yes, a theist posting here is like a fish bleeding in shark infested waters.

  312. #312 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    how do you differenciate between right and wrong? What is the basis of your moral code?

    Gosh! Wherever would we be without God?!?

    Do you really think that as much as 25% of the USian population has time to wallow in existential despair?

  313. #313 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    That’s a big problem. Do you murder people? Do you torture kittens?

    Who made up those rules? Suppose I happen to believe that murdering people is alright? Are you judging me? Suppose I don’t happen to comply with the golden rule….suppose I don’t give a damn what others do to me so in turn I can do unto others as I wish?

    You seem to espouse that morals and ethical behavior is whatever you happen to think it is or should be.

    The question you should ask is “Is my Moral Code ethical?”

    If you’re a Christian, I’d say no.

    Who determines what is ethical and unethical?

  314. #314 Bachalon
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, you do know that the only thing 100% universal among atheists is a lack of belief in god?

    There is no single belief system common to every atheist. Each of us is unique in that regard.

  315. #315 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Brute,
    Morality is a social construct, it’s a guide for behaviour in reference to the social setting one is in. If you were born into an African tribe, chances are you would be under a very different moral code to what you are now. To ask “who makes up the rules” is the wrong question. It’s not a matter of who, but a matter of how. There is not a single objective moral to grab, but that doesn’t mean morality is subjective.

    To elaborate on that point, say you didn’t find stealing immoral. If you steal an ice cream from me, is it still an immoral act? In our society, yes it is. Stealing is immoral within the context of our society. You don’t need a universal constant behind you in order to tell morality, you just a constraint on the system you are in.

    So in terms of Christianity, many of the rules and guides that are in the bible that many Christians take as authoritative morality are archaic and draconian by our modern standard. What we consider right and wrong has changed as society has changed. Slavery is no longer permissible, women have equal rights, skin colour has become an irrelevance (ideally), and sexuality in general has become a lot more open. It’s even permissible to be of a different religion, or of no religion at all.

  316. #316 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    Who made up those rules?

    Humans. Same people who wrote your bible – but they, being unsophisticated regarding such things, just didn’t understand why we shouldn’t murder, so they decided to make up a god to have told us not to. Just like they said ‘don’t eat pigs’ – not because their god said not to, but because (IIRC) spoiled pork contains nasty bacteria. They didn’t understand bacteria either, but they knew they had to find a way to keep people from dying.

    Suppose I happen to believe that murdering people is alright? Are you judging me?

    Yes. You would be wrong because you go against what is historically good for the future of our species; the sense of which we have retained.

    Suppose I don’t happen to comply with the golden rule….suppose I don’t give a damn what others do to me so in turn I can do unto others as I wish?

    It would depend on what you’re doing to them. If you’re sending them flowers thinking they wouldn’t like it then I don’t care. But if you want to rape, bash or murder them then you are (once again) acting in a way that is historically detrimental to the future of the species. I have a predisposition to want to stop you.

    You seem to espouse that morals and ethical behavior is whatever you happen to think it is or should be.

    To an extent that is true. But what I feel is moral and ethical is the result of thousands of years of human social evolution and is as hardwired into me as not eating meat that smells funny. Thing is, it’s hardwired into you, too – you just don’t realise it, preferring to believe that you choose not to do it because your god told you not to.

    So, I’ve answered some of your questions; here’s one for you: Would you, if your god appeared and told you that not only is it okay for you to rape and murder people, but that he wanted you to rape and murder people, would you do it?

  317. #317 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Who determines what is ethical and unethical?

    There is no absolute source, which is what disconcerts some people. Mostly it comes about by thinking through a problem, and talking with other people to reach a consensus. Just like they did in the old days, pre bible. Do you want somebody to rob your house? No, so stealing is bad. Do you want somebody to beat you up simply because your have the wrong (fill in the blank)? No, so beating people up is wrong. Eventually this thinking gets codified into secular laws. I have noticed one difference with atheists. They are less concerned with so called victimless crimes, many of which come from biblical morality. So they tend to be more liberal on social issues. But we range from libertarian, conservative, middle of the road, socialism, and anarchism. The proverbial fur can fly when we discuss politics.

  318. #318 Mena
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, if the only thing stopping you from killing people and torturing kittens is that you think that you will go to Hell you are one scary human being. Get help NOW!!!

  319. #319 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, come forward, I see you, like millions of other coming forward to declare their atheism.

    mothra,

    Relax, I’m simply trying to gain some insight.

    Do you know actually anything about science, or is your understanding of reality limited to “Goddidit”?

    Kel,

    Not a scientist, an Engineer; and I do know that anything that is built is designed…..it doesn’t simply “materialise” without thought and planning.

    So far, according to your doctrine, “a long time ago, in a galaxy far far away” a speck smaller than an atom (which contain all of the matter in the universe) exploded. The dust collected and as this dust collected it formed the Sun and this planet. From this lifeless rock everything from a duck billed platypus to a rose to a human being randomly “evolved” accidentally……a rock became a tree? Sounds supernatural………

    And you have the audacity to describe the beleifs of creation held by Christians (and numerous other religions) a fairy tale?

  320. #320 Kevin Camp
    January 6, 2009

    Nerd of Redhead: If it was given to him by a Catholic, then the Catholic was wrong. But Prof. Myers is not blameless either. Since when is receiving goods that you know were stolen (or at the very least, acquired under false pretenses) in any way ethical?

  321. #321 Rudy
    January 6, 2009

    Ok, I checked out Cracker Gate in the archives.

    I’m not very surprised to find out the back story, there wasn’t a lot more than posters in the thread told me, except for the death threats against PZ. And the fact that the student didn’t ask PZ for his “help” in this matter. (And why not: the student doesn’t believe it’s just a cracker, just like all those people PZ’s bashing).

    Also, People of Pharyngula: I am not a Catholic. Or a Hopi.
    Or a Muslim. Or, an atheist. None of PZ’s real desecrations,
    PZ’s imaginary one, or my hypothetical one, were attacks on my beliefs. But PZ’s stunt was tasteless and disrespectful, and not likely to change any minds.

    For the record, I do whatever I feel like doing on the Sabbath. It’s made for me too!

  322. #322 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    And you have the audacity to describe the beleifs of creation held by Christians (and numerous other religions) a fairy tale?

    Brute, have you ever looked into how and when your bible was put together? It wasn’t divinely inspired, but put into writing after a long oral tradition and modified for sometimes for hundreds of years, and was finally put together by several committees long after the fact. We have good reasons not to put much trust into the bible.

  323. #323 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 6, 2009

    Not a scientist, an Engineer; and I do know that anything that is built is designed…..it doesn’t simply “materialise” without thought and planning.

    Sigh.

    Engineer and making the Watchmaker argument.

    Why am I not surprised.

  324. #324 John Morales
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, one’s morals are what one does and how one adjudges others’ behaviours, not what one professes to believe.

    Who determines what is ethical and unethical?

    We all, believers and infidels alike, make our own determinations on what is ethical and act accordingly.

    One difference is that us infidels take ownership of our personal decisions. We are knowing morally free agents.

    True believers lack moral freedom, because they supposedly must always act in accordance with the precepts of their religion regardless of their own inner feelings, but they have the (false) comfort of thinking they avoid responsibility for their moral choices.

    An infidel has the freedom to do what they genuinely think is the right thing, based on their own understanding, and will not accept an action (e.g. stoning a victim) as moral merely based on other’s opinions.

    And, just as importantly, an infidel has the freedom to improve their morals over time, as they gather experience and knowledge.

  325. #325 Brute
    January 6, 2009

    Interesting discussion…..

    May we pick this up in the morning?

  326. #326 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Not a scientist, an Engineer; and I do know that anything that is built is designed…..it doesn’t simply “materialise” without thought and planning.

    So what designed the designer?

    So far, according to your doctrine, “a long time ago, in a galaxy far far away” a speck smaller than an atom (which contain all of the matter in the universe) exploded. The dust collected and as this dust collected it formed the Sun and this planet. From this lifeless rock everything from a duck billed platypus to a rose to a human being randomly “evolved” accidentally……a rock became a tree? Sounds supernatural………

    That’s not atheism, atheism is simply the lack of belief in a god. Do not confuse scientific explanations with atheism as they are not the same. Theists can and do accept scientific propositions, just as some atheists do not.

    As for your characterisation of the history of the universe: not one atheist is alleging that trees and life came from rocks. Are you away of what rocks are made of ass opposed to what life is made of? Anyway, isn’t it Christian dogma that God made man from dirt? Seems to me you are projecting.

    If you want to understand what it’s like to be an atheist, simply take God out of the picture. If you want to actually learn how the universe works with or without God involved, look to scientific knowledge.

    And you have the audacity to describe the beleifs of creation held by Christians (and numerous other religions) a fairy tale?

    I do, because the creation story in genesis has as much evidence going for it as the Aboriginal Dreamtime myth. Actually studying the universe and finding clues to how it all came about is different from just saying it happened a certain way and defend it despite all the evidence to the contrary.

  327. #327 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    The dust collected and as this dust collected it formed the Sun and this planet. From this lifeless rock everything from a duck billed platypus to a rose to a human being randomly “evolved” accidentally……a rock became a tree? Sounds supernatural………

    Yeah, who would believe in a fairy tale where people came formed from dust……

    Genesis 2:7

    LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.

  328. #328 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Kevin, one theory is that the cracker is a gift (forget the fictitious strings), and once the position of the person is their property. If it was theft at all it would be considered petty theft and the statute of limitations had run out. Quit trying to find fault, there none, except between your ears. We reached out consensus during the 30,000+ posts of Crackergate, and we will not change our minds at this time. You are beating a dead horse.

  329. #329 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    (or at the very least, acquired under false pretenses)

    How was it given under false pretences? Do you have any evidence that it was acquired under false pretences, or are you simply trying to maintain your indignity at what PZ did?

    Just curious, do you refrain from eating cow because the Hindu’s consider it a sacred animal? If not, why not?

  330. #330 Bachalon
    January 6, 2009

    Brute wrote:

    Not a scientist, an Engineer; and I do know that anything that is built is designed…..it doesn’t simply “materialise” without thought and planning.

    Ah, there’s the problem. You should read through Myers’ book list

    Why do you think your engineering background gives license to comment on biology?

    So far, according to your doctrine, “a long time ago, in a galaxy far far away” a speck smaller than an atom (which contain all of the matter in the universe) exploded.

    First of all, that’s not doctrine (but nice try there. Atheism is not a religion). Nothing exploded. It was more of an expansion. I’m not a physicist, so I will suggest that you actually read up on what it says and not what you want it to say for straw man purposes.

    The dust collected and as this dust collected it formed the Sun and this planet. From this lifeless rock everything from a duck billed platypus to a rose to a human being randomly “evolved” accidentally……a rock became a tree? Sounds supernatural………

    Are you stupid? No one thinks that a rock became a tree. I half think you’re just trolling. And evolution isn’t “random” it’s undirected.

    And you have the audacity to describe the beleifs of creation held by Christians (and numerous other religions) a fairy tale?

    Please. You’re one to talk.

  331. #331 Nerd of Redhead
    January 6, 2009

    Brute, go sleep if you need to. We run a 24/7 shop. In case you are interested, you have be posting with Europeans, Americans, and Australians, so we have all time zones covered.

  332. #332 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    Ahhh Brute. If you are going to argue that the science is absurd, it would really help if you actually understood what you are arguing against. I’d advise you to go and read about the theory of evolution, read about abiogenesis, read about star and planet formation, and read about the big bang, before trying to argue it’s all false. If only you knew how embarrassing you look trying to argue what you don’t know.

    As for atheism, where does it say that atheism is indoctrinated science? It seems like you are doing a grave disservice to your fellow Christians who actually use the same scientific explanations as you are alleging are atheist, not to mention painting all atheists under a brush that simply does not apply. Science is a way of understanding the reality we live in, atheism is to do with belief in a god. They are not the same, and you are being disingenuous for equating them.

  333. #333 Feynmaniac
    January 6, 2009

    The sun never sets on Pharyngula!

  334. #334 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    Brute,

    I’ll ignore the fact that you’ve chosen not to answer my question about morality – because by doing so you’re admitting that you’re wrong and we’re right, and you’re fully aware of that.

    And you have the audacity to describe the beleifs of creation held by Christians (and numerous other religions) a fairy tale?

    You feel that all belief systems are equally valid? You weren’t just born to Christian parents and brought up to believe in their relgiion? That’s very interesting.

    Exactly how many of them did you study in detail before you made the decision that Christianity (and the one particular sect of Christianity from the 38,000 there are) was the correct one?

  335. #335 commissarjs
    January 6, 2009

    You seem to espouse that morals and ethical behavior is whatever you happen to think it is or should be.

    Compared to what someone else thinks it should be? Religious leaders speak out on what they consider to be moral and immoral all the time. What makes their position superior to mine? For that matter what makes one religious leader’s opinion on morality superior to another. Who do I believe when they disagree?

  336. #336 ctygesen
    January 6, 2009

    @ Kevin Camp

    But Prof. Myers is not blameless either. Since when is receiving goods that you know were stolen (or at the very least, acquired under false pretenses) in any way ethical?

    When is it ethical to engage in campaigns of public vilification, harassment and intimidation?

    When is it ethical to deliberately inflame and incite intolerance against a person or a group, creating a situation in which violence becomes a recognizable threat?

    On the flip side, when is it ethical to refuse to follow the instructions of a uniformed police officer? Say you were being told not to videotape what was about to happen?

    When is it ethical to trespass on private property?

    There is no equivalence between what PZ did and the behaviour of the believers who sparked this powder keg to begin with. Adjust your ethical compass.

    @Rudy

    But PZ’s stunt was tasteless and disrespectful, and not likely to change any minds.

    Like Kevin, you disingenuously strip PZ’s actions from their context. Disrespect was the point of the exercise.

    And PZ’s “stunt” did change at least one mind. I went from “somebody else’s problem”, to “you talkin’ to me?”

  337. #337 Kel
    January 6, 2009

    I really hope if Brute comes back that he informs himself on what the scientific principles he mocks really say. Nothing is worse than an ignorant theist making straw-man assertions about concepts they do not understand.

  338. #338 Wowbagger
    January 6, 2009

    Rudy wrote:

    But PZ’s stunt was tasteless and disrespectful, and not likely to change any minds.

    ‘Tasteless’? Well, taste is subjective; it mightn’t be to yours, but to say that means he shouldn’t do it because you don’t like it is another thing entirely.

    ‘Disrespectful’? Of course it was. That’s the whole point. Those particular Catholics thought the cracker is more important than the law, Webster Cook’s physical well-being, his future and, his (and PZ’s) life. People who think like that need to be disrespected, because their values are contemptible.

    ‘Not likely to change any minds’? Way wrong on that one. Read some deconversion stories sometime. One of the things that prompts believers to start doubting is if they realise that it’s possible to disbelieve and act on that disbelief. One of religion’s greatest lies is that, secretly, everyone really does believe but pretends not to; such an act of brazen sacrilege may well start people thinking about their beliefs.

    Not to mention that many Christians – Catholics included – pointed out how disgusted they were with the Catholic League’s actions. A truly introspective Christian would have to wonder whether their religion really was the truth they’re constantly told it is when their co-religionists can act in such ways.

    What it did, if nothing else, was make people think about religion. And that’s how many former religious come to atheism – because they started thinking instead of believing. It’s all about the fence-sitters.

  339. #339 Danny M
    January 6, 2009

    It does not seem to me any less possible that God created the universe than the possibility that the universe just blew up into being by itself. There is more than one way to make a vehicle run. We chose gasoline, but there are other ways. Just because we can prove that a car can possibly run on gasoline does not make it intelligent to claim gasoline is the only way to run a car. Just because we can see how a universe may have came into being, does not mean it is the only way possible, or , does not mean it happened this way and not another. To say emphatically that the universe came into being without a Creator does not add up to me. And christian should get persecuted in america, then the real ones would be the only ones left claiming to be christians. They are persecuted heavily in certain areas of the world though.
    I just do not understand how people emphatically state “There is no God.”, without closing their eyes. It seems to me if their eyes were open then they would maybe say “I do not believe there is a God.”. There is a difference. I do not believe the earth is billions of years old, but hey, i could be wrong. There seems to be lots of evidence supporting a really old earth, and it would not contradict the bible, i just have my suspicions. There are things other than blind make belief that draw people to trust in God. Just because you do not agree with it, does not mean people are stupid.

  340. #340 Danny M
    January 6, 2009

    It does not seem to me any less possible that God created the universe than the possibility that the universe just blew up into being by itself. There is more than one way to make a vehicle run. We chose gasoline, but there are other ways. Just because we can prove that a car can possibly run on gasoline does not make it intelligent to claim gasoline is the only way to run a car. Just because we can see how a universe may have came into being, does not mean it is the only way possible, or , does not mean it happened this way and not another. To say emphatically that the universe came into being without a Creator does not add up to me. And christian should get persecuted in america, then the real ones would be the only ones left claiming to be christians. They are persecuted heavily in certain areas of the world though.
    I just do not understand how people emphatically state “There is no God.”, without closing their eyes. It seems to me if their eyes were open then they would maybe say “I do not believe there is a God.”. There is a difference. I do not believe the earth is billions of years old, but hey, i could be wrong. There seems to be lots of evidence supporting a really old earth, and it would not contradict the bible, i just have my suspicions. There are things other than blind make belief that draw people to trust in God. Just because you do not agree with it, does not mean people are stupid.

  341. #341 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    It does not seem to me any less possible that God created the universe than the possibility that the universe just blew up into being by itself. There is more than one way to make a vehicle run. We chose gasoline, but there are other ways. Just because we can prove that a car can possibly run on gasoline does not make it intelligent to claim gasoline is the only way to run a car. Just because we can see how a universe may have came into being, does not mean it is the only way possible, or , does not mean it happened this way and not another. To say emphatically that the universe came into being without a Creator does not add up to me. And christian should get persecuted in america, then the real ones would be the only ones left claiming to be christians. They are persecuted heavily in certain areas of the world though.
    I just do not understand how people emphatically state “There is no God.”, without closing their eyes. It seems to me if their eyes were open then they would maybe say “I do not believe there is a God.”. There is a difference. I do not believe the earth is billions of years old, but hey, i could be wrong. There seems to be lots of evidence supporting a really old earth, and it would not contradict the bible, i just have my suspicions. There are things other than blind make belief that draw people to trust in God. Just because you do not agree with it, does not mean people are stupid.

  342. #342 Wowbagger
    January 7, 2009

    Danny,

    You’re once, twice, three times barely coherent.

  343. #343 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    Please believe me when i say that i DID NOT MEAN TO POST IT THAT MANY TIMES and i am truly sorry.

  344. #344 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    Wow. The evidence of the earth being over 4 billion years old. There is no evidence for any gods. Theists really need to learn to be brief. Why do stupid arguments need to be so damn long?

  345. #345 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    I do not believe the earth is billions of years old, but hey, i could be wrong.

    And you are wrong. When several radiometric dating techniques all confirm that the solar system was created around 4.5 billion years ago, the evidence is pretty conclusive. Especially when it’s consistent with the age of the universe, worked out by observing galaxies 10s of billions of light years away. What do you have that invalidates those results?

    To say emphatically that the universe came into being without a Creator does not add up to me.

    There’s a difference between saying there’s no reason to suggest that a creator made the universe and a creator did not make the universe. The problem of putting a creator there is that it answers nothing. Instead of saying “where did the universe come from?” the question becomes “where did the creator come from?” Putting God in there is a non-answer, nothing more than wishful thinking.

    The problem comes when people say there must be a creator / designer. Why must there be?

  346. #346 Bachalon
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M wrote:

    I just do not understand how people emphatically state “There is no God.”, without closing their eyes. It seems to me if their eyes were open then they would maybe say “I do not believe there is a God.”. There is a difference.

    That says more about you than it does about anyone making that statement. There is indeed a difference, but that’s neither here nor there. You don’t get to define atheism for atheists.

    Why do so many believers exhibit this lack of imagination?

    I do not believe the earth is billions of years old, but hey, i could be wrong. There seems to be lots of evidence supporting a really old earth, and it would not contradict the bible, i just have my suspicions.

    Nothing could about it. You are wrong.

    There are things other than blind make belief that draw people to trust in God. Just because you do not agree with it, does not mean people are stupid.

    So, why do you believe?

    You’re not doing well so far.

  347. #347 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    Why does Danny M think he knows better than the thousands of geologists and nuclear physicists who have worked on aging the earth? I wonder how he reacts to the astronomers who have looked 13 billion years back in time by observing distant galaxies?

  348. #348 Wowbagger
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M

    Your coherence (or lack thereof) is more the issue than whatever caused the triplication.

    It does not seem to me any less possible that God created the universe than the possibility that the universe just blew up into being by itself.

    Which might be okay except that, when you’re dealing with scientific explanations for something, you’re obliged to take the most parsimonious option. Inviting a god of any sort to the party makes everything far more complicated, by virtue of having to explain where said god came from. If there’s equal chance of either, we take the one without god.

    And christian should get persecuted in america, then the real ones would be the only ones left claiming to be christians.

    Do you want to try writing that again? It doesn’t make a lot of sense.

    They [Christians] are persecuted heavily in certain areas of the world though.

    There are Christians persecuting people around the world, and in the USA. What’s your point?

    I just do not understand how people emphatically state “There is no God.”, without closing their eyes. It seems to me if their eyes were open then they would maybe say “I do not believe there is a God.”.

    Well, that comes down to the definition of God. I feel there is no ‘God’ as defined by the broader Judeo-Christian belief system; that isn’t to say I consider it impossible for any other gods to exist. But Yahweh? Heck, no. No chance whatsoever – unless it’s far different from how they’ve defined it in the bible and the supporting material.

    I do not believe the earth is billions of years old, but hey, i could be wrong.

    Why not? The only reasons not to are religious. Would you trust the bible if it said the sky was really green, even though your eyes tell you it’s blue? To people who understand, doubting the age of the earth is like saying the sky is green.

    There are things other than blind make belief that draw people to trust in God.

    But that is true of every religion – but all religions cannot be true. They can, however, all be false.

    Just because you do not agree with it, does not mean people are stupid.

    True. But the reasons people give for believing in what we don’t agree with often are. And they are treated as such.

  349. #349 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    Kel—The problem of putting a creator there is that it answers nothing. Instead of saying “where did the universe come from?” the question becomes “where did the creator come from?”—-
    I think that line of reasoning would have stopped scientist way before they got to the big bang, but, it seems like i could restate your statement. “The problem of putting a big bang there is that it answers nothing….”. So maybe that reasoning should not stop you from considering a creator.
    The reason i wrote about the earth age was not the reason you all thought. I could give a rats a*s if the earth is 6 thous. or 6 bill. years old. The misunderstanding was problably due to me not writing well. I do think the earth is older than most church people say, and I do think that it is younger than most other people suggest.———
    You seem to think that science brings all answers and that you should not except or consider things outside of science. But without philosophy we would not have found the scientific method. I mean really, think about it. Science is not God, stop treating it like it were. It has it’s place. I would suggest that you stop using science as an excuse not to consider God.

  350. #350 Owlmirror
    January 7, 2009

    “The problem of putting a big bang there is that it answers nothing….”. So maybe that reasoning should not stop you from considering a creator.

    Except that the big bang does answer something: It explains the many observations made by astronomers of the behavior of the stars and galaxies expanding away from each other; it explains the temperature of the universe; it explains many, many cosmological observations.

    You seem to think that science brings all answers and that you should not except or consider things outside of science. But without philosophy we would not have found the scientific method.

    True, but it was a very skeptical philosophy; a philosophy that specifically rejected religious dogma insisted on evidence, repeated and observed and argued over, and sometimes, falsified by new observations.

    Science is not God, stop treating it like it were.

    No one is, nor is anyone suggesting that it ought to be.

    I would suggest that you stop using science as an excuse not to consider God.

    It is exactly because science is not permitted to examine God that science rejects God. And I mean “permitted” in several senses, there: If God exists, he isn’t allowing himself to be examined; if he doesn’t exist, there is nothing to examine, and it is the broader philosophy of science which does not permit examining the nonexistent.

    If God offered any evidence for his existence, science would certainly examine it.

  351. #351 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    I think that line of reasoning would have stopped scientist way before they got to the big bang, but, it seems like i could restate your statement. “The problem of putting a big bang there is that it answers nothing….”. So maybe that reasoning should not stop you from considering a creator.

    The difference is that we know the big bang happened. Before the big bang we have no idea. We’re not sure if there can even be a before since it’s the beginning of time. Saying we don’t know and putting in Jesus is very different.

    I do think the earth is older than most church people say, and I do think that it is younger than most other people suggest.

    Why do you think that? What evidence do you have that the rocks and minerals we’ve dated on earth that are over 4 billion years old, and the moon and meteorite rocks we’ve dated to over 4.5 billion years are inaccurate?

    You seem to think that science brings all answers and that you should not except or consider things outside of science. But without philosophy we would not have found the scientific method.

    There’s a difference between science not knowing all the answers and thinking that philosophy that is contrary to science is valid. There are certain questions that aren’t scientific in nature, that’s true. But questions to do with the universe are scientific propositions because we can test them empirically. Take away our ability to measure it, you take away our ability to know it.

    Science is not God, stop treating it like it were. It has it’s place. I would suggest that you stop using science as an excuse not to consider God.

    Why do you reject Zeus? Why do you reject Thor? Why do you reject The Flying Spaghetti Monster? Why do you reject Ra? Why do you reject Ziltoid The Omniscient? Each of those concepts has just as must merit as the Judeo-Christian construct of god. Without evidence, how can you discern the true god from the fables made up by cultures to explain the unknown?

    As for my personal rejection of God, it’s got nothing to do with science. If I were a believer, I’d still be a scientist and interested in discovering how the natural world works. I reject God for the same reason I reject The Giant Rainbow Serpent. They are fairy tales made up by cultures who didn’t know better. There’s no better reason to believe in the Christian mythology than the Hindu mythology.

  352. #352 Bachalon
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M wrote:

    I do think the earth is older than most church people say, and I do think that it is younger than most other people suggest.

    The problem is that you are wrong. What do you know that thousands of geologists, the people who spend their working lives studying that sort of thing, don’t?

    You seem to think that science brings all answers and that you should not except or consider things outside of science.

    Do you even know what science is? It’s not some body of conclusions to picked over and assembled into whatever picture you want.

    It’s a method of knowing, of finding out about the world around us. The best method, as a matter of fact, for weeding out the false.

    But without philosophy we would not have found the scientific method. I mean really, think about it. Science is not God, stop treating it like it were.

    Sorry, who does this? Yes, a lot of people hold the scientific method in deep respect, but who actually worships it?

    It has it’s place. I would suggest that you stop using science as an excuse not to consider God.

    Nice equivocation there. Do you have a real suggestion? Is your god really that weak?

  353. #353 Owlmirror
    January 7, 2009

    Bah. Composition fail:

    a philosophy that specifically rejected religious dogma and insisted on evidence

    Fixed.

  354. #354 Patricia, OM
    January 7, 2009

    CRAP! I last looked in at #258. That’s a lot of back reading.

    I’m baking cherry & pumpkin pies today… damn trolls only love the smell of batshit.

  355. #355 Feynmaniac
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M,

    i could restate your statement. “The problem of putting a big bang there is that it answers nothing….”.

    And you would be wrong. It is consistent with the expansion of the universe seen and it predicts the background radiation seen.

    The reason i wrote about the earth age was not the reason you all thought. I could give a rats a*s if the earth is 6 thous. or 6 bill. years old. The misunderstanding was problably due to me not writing well. I do think the earth is older than most church people say, and I do think that it is younger than most other people suggest.———

    I could give at rat’s ass (this blog is heavily moderated like the ones you are probably used to going to) how old YOU think the world is. The current estimates are based on actual physical evidence.

    you should not except or consider things outside of science.

    [Bold mine] I actually laughed out loud there

    Science is not God, stop treating it like it were.

    Please provide an example of anyone treating it as such.
    _ _ _

    Sigh. I now see others have beaten me to the punch. It’s like racing the other kids for candy after the piñata has split open.

  356. #356 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    Don’t make the mistake of thinking the choice is between Yahweh and nihilism. Just remember how many other concepts for the divine there have been throughout history. Everything from tribal animalism, to the pantheistic eastern religions, to spirit worship, to polytheism, to monotheism, to deism, to alien worship – all with many different forms of the divine to each one. Jesus is just one of thousands upon thousands of concepts of god that have come and gone in the history of the earth.

    And if we are doing nothing more than speculating on the unknown, what about the infinite possibilities of what could lie beyond this reality. It could be an infinite number of types of possibilities that humans will never even conceptualise, and infinite combinations inside each of those infinite possibilities. The simple fact remains that we don’t know and in almost all likelihood we can’t know.

    So what makes one belief more likely than another? If the choice is between an infinite number of combinations and the material, I’ll take the material as I know the material exists. The only thing that will make Jesus any more plausible than the karmic wheel is (and here comes that dreaded word) evidence. Otherwise you are just stabbing in the dark, and stabbing in a particular direction because you see other people stabbing in that direction and relying on one of them to know something.

  357. #357 Stanton
    January 7, 2009

    Kel,

    Not a scientist, an Engineer; and I do know that anything that is built is designed…..it doesn’t simply “materialise” without thought and planning.

    So far, according to your doctrine, “a long time ago, in a galaxy far far away” a speck smaller than an atom (which contain all of the matter in the universe) exploded. The dust collected and as this dust collected it formed the Sun and this planet. From this lifeless rock everything from a duck billed platypus to a rose to a human being randomly “evolved” accidentally……a rock became a tree? Sounds supernatural………

    No, it sounds like you’ve constructed an inaccurate cartoon of Evolutionary Biology that also includes cosmology and the Big Bang, which are not covered by Biology (evolutionary or otherwise).

    And you have the audacity to describe the beleifs of creation held by Christians (and numerous other religions) a fairy tale?

    So please explain how a belief in a literal reading of the King James’ Translation of the Bible has direct and indirect applications in Biology or other sciences.

    Or, perhaps you can explain how belief in creation as explained in a literal interpretation of the Bible has direct applications in your line of work, in Engineering?

  358. #358 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    Owlmirror “It is exactly because science is not permitted to examine God that science rejects God.”— The issue isn’t that SCIENCE rejects or accepts God. When i ask why someone does not consider a creator, they say science is not permitted to examine God. But we did not use science to examine morals. We didn’t want people to steal from us and murder us so we said these things were wrong–according to an earlier post, very abreviated and in my own words. We used no scientific method to come to that conclusion, but yet we all still agree to it. People are ok with examining things without using the scientific method until you say the word creator. Why?
    Owlmirror “Except that the big bang does answer something: It explains the many observations made by astronomers of the behavior of the stars and galaxies expanding away from each other; it explains the temperature of the universe; it explains many, many cosmological observations.”— And you see, this is ‘one’ of the reasons i like to talk with people i disagree with. thank you.
    Bachalon—- I had to look that word up. 1 : to use equivocal language especially with intent to deceive
    2 : to avoid committing oneself in what one says.
    Do you think i am trying to deceive you?
    Kel—Even though i do believe it’s Jesus. I am talking about a creator, period.

  359. #359 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    Which ever one it was that laughed at my spelling, i’m insecure enough without having some rude person make fun of me. I’m the type of person that gets bothered by that so if it’s all for fun then i just thought you should know. If not then i really don’t want to correspond with you. And if no one wants me on here all you have to do is say so. I just like to talk with people of differnt minds.

  360. #360 Wowbagger
    January 7, 2009

    But we did not use science to examine morals. We didn’t want people to steal from us and murder us so we said these things were wrong–according to an earlier post, very abreviated and in my own words. We used no scientific method to come to that conclusion, but yet we all still agree to it.

    Actually, we do use science for this – the fields of Psychology, Sociology and Cultural Anthropology are social sciences which deal with how humans – including humans from different cultures, past and present, behave. A significant proportion of our understanding of morals and ethics (and their development) comes from studies in those areas.

    When i ask why someone does not consider a creator, they say science is not permitted to examine God.

    Who says this? Anyone who tells you that is a liar. If there was any evidence for God (or any other deity for that matter) it would be considered. But everything that was once considered evidence for supernatural beings (e.g. the sun, the moon, stars, comets, rain, thunder, lightning, earthquakes, the diversity of life on this planet) has been found to have a completely natural explanation.

    People are ok with examining things without using the scientific method until you say the word creator. Why?

    But the things that are being examined outside of science are abstract concepts. They can’t have physical impact on the world. If your God exists as he is defined by your religion (Christianity) then he affects the physical world by answering prayers and performing miracles. This would leave evidence we can find. But no-one’s found any.

    Do you think i am trying to deceive you?

    Probably not intentionally. But doing what you’re doing gives us that impression that you are, since deception is standard behaviour for creationists and we’re unsure whether you’re genuine or not.

  361. #361 Bachalon
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M wrote:

    We used no scientific method to come to that conclusion, but yet we all still agree to it.

    Actually, we did just a crude iteration of it before we had a notion for such a thing. Do you think there might be a reason so many rules and taboos appear across so many different societies that had so many different religions?

    Do you think i am trying to deceive you?

    Not intentionally so.

  362. #362 John Morales
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M:

    Which ever one it was that laughed at my spelling, i’m insecure enough without having some rude person make fun of me

    No-one made mention of your spelling that I can see.

  363. #363 Bachalon
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M wrote:

    I just like to talk with people of differnt minds.

    If you’re really interested in talking and not just witnessing and paying lip service, I’d be happy to give you my AIM name as I too enjoy engaging those with different worldviews from my own.

  364. #364 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    Wowbagger— (Post 349 “It is exactly because science is not permitted to examine God that science rejects God.”)—
    “doing what i’m doing”.— I do not understand how having a conversation about a creator would lead someone to think i was trying to deceive them. My main point is (that the possibility of a creator is worth examining. And just because you can not use the scientific method on something does not make it a worthless examination.)
    All the branches of science you brought up about morality, i do not think those have anything to do with why people don’t look for God. It always seems to come down to the scientific method as to why they do not consider a creator. But the method does not explain math either i dont think. (My opinion is that the method is solid. The method is correct but incomplete.)

  365. #365 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    Kel—Even though i do believe it’s Jesus. I am talking about a creator, period.

    And there are an infinite number of possibilities to how the universe came to be. To believe in a creator of any kind is still nothing more than wishful thinking.

    I’m not denying that a creator is indeed, I’m saying that we don’t know and in all probability we can’t know. To believe in any one particular god is absurd as the rest of them. There’s simply no reason to believe in a creator, and especially no reason to believe in any creator in particular.

  366. #366 Matt
    January 7, 2009

    But we did not use science to examine morals. We didn’t want people to steal from us and murder us so we said these things were wrong–according to an earlier post, very abreviated and in my own words. We used no scientific method to come to that conclusion, but yet we all still agree to it. People are ok with examining things without using the scientific method until you say the word creator. Why?

    That is dishonest. Whether or not we *should* do something is completely different from a question of existence. This is the difference between an ‘is’ and an ‘ought’. So yes, morals are arrived at by consensus, without evidence or the scientific method. This is because they aren’t ‘true’ in any meaningful sense. They are simply what people have agreed upon to regulate society. Also in this category are things that are poorly defined, like

    “My dad is the coolest!!”

    or

    “The church is great!!”

    Anything that actually exists can be shown to be so by the scientific method, though only with some uncertainty. Add onto this that your god is unfalsifiable, and your position is indefensible. But questions of falsifiability aside, you haven’t given any evidence at all.

    So stop conflating moral arguments with existential ones, and give the damn evidence…or admit you are wrong.

  367. #367 Owlmirror
    January 7, 2009
    When i ask why someone does not consider a creator, they say science is not permitted to examine God.

    Who says this? Anyone who tells you that is a liar.

    That was me, actually, but I may not have expressed myself well.

    Consider: When I offered my test of God (the believer prays to God for some digits from a random number that I generated, with me offering the md5sum and sha1sum of that number) to Pilt, and to Daniel Smith before him, some months ago, they utterly refused. Smith simply said that God doesn’t work like that; Pilt went with his monarchical analogy, insisting that I had no right to demand anything at all of God (not even digits from a random number).

    Neither of them permitted me to test what they claimed was God. Or they claimed that God would not permit himself to be tested.

    See also my #349.

  368. #368 danny m
    January 7, 2009

    Matt– you want me to admit i am wrong, or admit that there is no creator. Nothing any body has written here would make me be able to say that there is no God. Yet i just ask you to consider. I don’t want you to admit nothing to me, it would be wortless except to my ego. Things written here may give me the ability to say there may not be a god, but not tha there is no god. You want me to prove something that you yourself would say can’t be proven even if it were so? That is what’s dishonest. And i would think it would be obvious to an atheist that it’s dishonest.
    Me on the other hand, i just want you to consider a creator. To me, one can not consider a creator without considering no creator. And one can not consider the non existence of a creator without considering the existence of one.

  369. #369 Feynmaniac
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M,

    Which ever one it was that laughed at my spelling, i’m insecure enough without having some rude person make fun of me. I’m the type of person that gets bothered by that so if it’s all for fun then i just thought you should know. If not then i really don’t want to correspond with you. And if no one wants me on here all you have to do is say so. I just like to talk with people of differnt minds.

    A lot of people that come by here aren’t interested in discussion and deserve only to be mocked. Perhaps, I was too quick to judge and was unnecessarily harsh in #354. Apologies if I offended you.

  370. #370 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    Me on the other hand, i just want you to consider a creator. To me, one can not consider a creator without considering no creator.

    I have considered a creator, given what we know about the universe, it’s really nothing more than wishful thinking at best and an absurd impossibility at worst. The question of a creator in the absence of any evidence becomes an irrelevance – it does not matter what you believe if there is no way of knowing whether it would be true. You might as well just make up your own deity, it’s as good a guess as any other that’s come before it…

  371. #371 Bachalon
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M wrote:

    Me on the other hand, i just want you to consider a creator.

    Why? What evidence can you present? Don’t talk about philosophy. Evidence. Something we can verify for ourselves.

    Also, I was serious about talking. It’s late, and I’m up as I usually am; you seem to be, too.

  372. #372 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 7, 2009

    Posted by: danny m | January 7, 2009

    Me on the other hand, i just want you to consider a creator.

    Most of us have considered one and passed on it. Please ask us something new. Something that other like you have not demanded of us dozens of times.

  373. #373 danny M
    January 7, 2009

    owlmirror– disclaimer duely noted. Maybe both sides should allow more testing. If God doesn’t allow testing then He can take up for Himself and we just would never know i guess, which may be part of the problem you have with it.
    I have tested God, but it is not proof of god. one could say that it could be other things. And if I told you i would be labled full of crap which still leaves us at the point which may be why you have a problem with it. It cant be tested. And when it can, there can usually be other explanations. Even if those other explanations are not likely, if they are there, then i would say that there is no proof. So when someone says “prove it to me”, i feel like i have been dealt a stacked deck. Even if i brought you something that i just knew was a “god thing”, it still would not be proof. Like, if i prayed for an earthquake, and it happened, that still does not prove a God. It could have been an alien that likes to screw with peoples heads. I mean why conclude it was God? So you say “proof”, and i say B.S. And you’re probably saying on the other end “B.S”.

  374. #374 John Morales
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M:

    [1] Nothing any body has written here would make me be able to say that there is no God. [2] Yet i just ask you to consider. [3] I don’t want you to admit nothing to me, it would be wortless except to my ego. [4] Things written here may give me the ability to say there may not be a god, but not tha there is no god. [5] You want me to prove something that you yourself would say can’t be proven even if it were so?

    1. I don’t think anyone has asked you to do so.
    2. What makes you think we haven’t already? I, for one, have given the deity-concept more than a cursory examination. It failed the test of rationality.
    3. I and other commenters here are more than willing to admit our opinions and beliefs; your problem will be the deluge of such you may encounter.
    4. Of course*. Good to see you acknowledge this.
    5. No, but the expectation around here is that, if you make claims, you should support them with evidence and argument.


    * well, for certain varieties of god. The Christian one has contradictory attributes claimed for it, so that particular one can’t exist.

  375. #375 Hi Danny
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M,

    I’m an atheist, so you probably won’t trust me, but I’m going to give you some advice. Why? For the same reason I like to watch a football match between two equally good teams. It’s interesting when the score is close, and boring when one team is losing miserably.

    And Danny, you are losing miserably.

    Imagine if I said to you, “Michael Dukakis is the president, and my brother Dan is a dentist.” Would you believe that my brother is a dentist? Or that he’s named Dan? Or that I even have a brother? You would strongly doubt everything that comes out of my mouth, because I don’t even seem to have the lucidity to realize that Dukakis is not and never was the president. I might not even be aware of what year it is.

    Danny, you just said to us, “Michael Dukakis is the president, and Jesus is God.”

    Except you said it a little differently: “the big bang didn’t happen, and Jesus is God.”

    And “the Earth is younger than 4.5 billion years, and Jesus is God.”

    Any minute now I expect you to say “humans did not evolve from other apes, and Jesus is God.”

    Danny, we know that the big bang happened, and that the Earth is approximately 4.5 billion years old, and that humans evolved from other apes, and that George Bush was elected instead of Michael Dukakis, because we have researched the evidence and we understand it. It is obvious that you do not.

    If you want to have even the slightest chance of converting anyone here to Christianity, you have to quit telling us that Michael Dukakis is president. And you have to learn to explain, convincingly, how you determined who was elected president in 1988.

    I suggest you start here: http://powells.com/biblio/1-9780061233500-1

  376. #376 Bachalon
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M wrote:

    It cant be tested.

    That’s the thing: a lack of conclusive disproof doesn’t make belief and non belief equally reasonable.

    If someone came to you talking about Allah in the same way you’re talking about Jesus to us, would that convince you? If not, why do you think that would work on us?

    Whenever religion has made a claim about the world, that’s almost always turned out to be false. Genesis? False. The Flood? False. It’s track record is pretty slim which is one of the reasons why you’ll find a lot of skepticism here.

  377. #377 danny m
    January 7, 2009

    feynmaniac— it’s cool, really it’s prob. just that im too sensitive.
    ok ok enough with the considering crap. i’ll take a long break and come up with something new so we all don’t die of repetitive boredom. I have some good stuff i might be able to mustur up, but i’ll let you be the judge of that. Please don’t not want me here i love this crap.

  378. #378 Matt
    January 7, 2009

    Like, if i prayed for an earthquake, and it happened, that still does not prove a God.

    Not proof by itself, no. But why don’t you give a demonstration, and I promise you, if you could consistently display this power, and only when you pray to *your* god, I will be paying a lot more attention. Positive evidence builds up over time to convince us, whereas a disproof is only required once. Now lets look at the history: Christianity has had 2000 years, give or take, and yet cannot produce one miracle except in anecdotal situations. Every other religion also has these same anecdotal miracles, and frankly, they aren’t convincing. It also doesn’t have any other evidence amounting to more than

    ‘some guy who has a similar name to our holy man was a rabbi, at one point.’

    Since supposedly miracles do occur(according to the bible), and since I’m guessing you think you have your own evidence, lay it on the table. I promise I wont laugh.

  379. #379 danny m
    January 7, 2009

    atheist——Loosing? I thought we were all winning. No one enjoys argument anymore unless they think they are winning. I know what the score is.

  380. #380 Owlmirror
    January 7, 2009

    Me on the other hand, i just want you to consider a creator. To me, one can not consider a creator without considering no creator. And one can not consider the non existence of a creator without considering the existence of one.

    I assure you, I have indeed considered a creator, and that is why I am now an atheist.

    Let me see if I can convey this…

    It comes down to definitions, perhaps: How is God defined?

    Some definitions of God exclude God being a person. This includes the idea that God is love (an impersonal emotion), or God is the universe and everything in it, with no consciousness or personality (Pantheism), or God is some specific thing (the sun is God; the earth is God; etc)

    I would have no problem acknowledging that the thing that is being called “God” exists (the universe is real; the sun is real; the earth is real; etc), but I find this to be an equivocation: First of all, if God is not a person, then worship is pointless; second of all, many (not all) religions do have God as a person. Finally, calling an acknowledged impersonal thing “God” is merely a matter of personal preference. Since my preference does not run that way, I am free to reject that particular definition.

    If God is defined as being a person, we run into a problem similar to that first posed by Epicurus centuries before Jesus was allegedly born:

    All examples of persons that we know of communicate directly, unless they suffer from some defect. Either they are not aware that someone is trying to communicate with them, or they don’t know how to respond (defects of knowledge), or they cannot communicate for physical reasons (defects of power), or they are bad-tempered or indifferent, and refuse to communicate solely because of mood or temperament (defects of benevolence.

    God does not communicate directly. Thus, even if God exists, God has one or more of the defects listed above… and I think that I am justified in saying that a defective being, even if it were indeed real, is not what I would call God.

  381. #381 Bachalon
    January 7, 2009

    Danny, I know you said you were sensitive, so I’m trying to be as tactful as I can. Among other things (research, etc), please work on your spelling and grammar. It will aid you quite a bit when talking with people.

    Competent self-expression is the gift that keeps on giving.

    You should probably look at Greta Christina’s “How to be an Ally with Atheists,” the about.com atheism pages (they have a good overview), Lonewolf’s Den has a good page on how to engage atheists.

    Bone up on your logic. Books like “The Art of Making Sense,” and others will help.

    None of this is hard; it just takes time.

  382. #382 danny m
    January 7, 2009

    When i was a kid someone showed me differnet places in the bible (promises etc.) It was about money and faith. I feel like it has been used selfishly..but.. I did what it said, and asked God for 20 dollars, and thanked Him for it every day…to myself and no one knew. And about a week later i was coming out of court and stopped at the traffic signal. Someone from a car or two behind me got out of his car and come to my window and put a twenty dollar bill in my shirt pocket and so i had money for the offering plate. I told you it sounds like B.S but i swear to God it happened.
    Then a little time passed and i got really screwed up on drugs. I really did try to stop but i COULDN’T. He saved me.
    You see, to me i have proof. But it serves for no proof when it comes to telling other people.
    But anyway there is stuff in the bible that Jesus said and i just acted on it and He did it.
    Then the drugs thing… it was God.
    good night everyone, i’ll be back in a day or so, but i gotta sleep for work.

  383. #383 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    I still have my vodka test running. It’s now been weeks since I set the challenge for God to turn my water into vodka… it’s been several weeks and nothing has happened.

  384. #384 Hi Danny
    January 7, 2009

    atheist——Loosing? I thought we were all winning. No one enjoys argument anymore unless they think they are winning. I know what the score is.

    That’s great, Danny, tell yourself that.

    I’m trying to be nice here, and I’m telling you as kindly as possible: you are making no sense.

    It’s possible that I could be converted to Christianity. It’s possible! I acknowledge this possibility. I don’t know what my future holds.

    But I know this for sure: I could never be converted to Christianity by someone who doesn’t understand why it’s obvious that the big bang happened, or who doesn’t understand how we know for certain that the Earth is billions of years old, or who doesn’t understand the incontrovertible evidence that humans evolved from other apes.

    When you say you doubt these things, you are telling me something, very clearly. You are saying “I cannot be bothered to do serious research, and I cannot be bothered to learn about the truths of the natural world around me.” It is reasonable for me to assume, then, that you don’t know what you’re talking about when you say “Jesus is God.”

    Take my advice.

    Or don’t, it’s your loss.

  385. #385 Matt
    January 7, 2009

    Someone from a car or two behind me got out of his car and come to my window and put a twenty dollar bill in my shirt pocket and so i had money for the offering plate. I told you it sounds like B.S but i swear to God it happened.

    No, this doesn’t sound like BS at all. It sounds like coincidence and confirmation bias. I remember back when I believed, I prayed for all kinds of things. One of the most common was that I would do well on tests. Well, I prayed every time, and I got great scores. But, if I am praying all the time for doing well, I am going to *happen* to receive my prayer quite often.
    Similarly, if I pray for money all the time, when someone finally does give me some (which happens to all of us, by the way;atheists too) it will superficially appear to have worked. But that’s just because it stands out in my mind, more so than all the days I prayed and didn’t receive money. So if you actually have confidence in your god, you should do what I did, and see if it really works.

    Make a daily recording of what you pray for, and what you receive. After a few months, see if you get those things that you pray for more often. It’s easy, and if you are confident in your god, you should have no objections to it.

    You’ll be an atheist in no time.

  386. #386 Matt
    January 7, 2009

    I still have my vodka test running. It’s now been weeks since I set the challenge for God to turn my water into vodka… it’s been several weeks and nothing has happened.

    Be patient. The free energy change associated with that kind of miracle is a bit high. God has to couple it to the oxidation of souls in hell to make it a favorable reaction.

  387. #387 Wowbagger
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M

    So, another person gave you $20? That’s proof of the power of people – not the power of God. If you put an empty Snickers wrapper in your pocket, and prayed for it to become $20 and then you looked in your pocket and found it had become $20? Well, let’s just say that that would be something worth mentioning.

  388. #388 Twin-Skies
    January 7, 2009

    Someone from a car or two behind me got out of his car and come to my window and put a twenty dollar bill in my shirt pocket and so i had money for the offering plate. I told you it sounds like B.S but i swear to God it happened.
    Then a little time passed and i got really screwed up on drugs. I really did try to stop but i COULDN’T. He saved me.
    You see, to me i have proof. But it serves for no proof when it comes to telling other people.

    My uncle was diagnosed with lung cancer early 2008. Almost everybody on my mom’s side of the family, including the in-laws prayed really, REALLY hard that he would somehow recover. He passed away December 31, 2008, at approx. 10:00 am.

    Your story of the 20-dollar bill is just coincidence, not an act of God. The addiction, probably, but I’d credit that more to your personal willpower, or perhaps a simple transference of the addiction to another medium, such as religion.

  389. #389 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    I guess it comes down to a definition of a creator. If we take creator as putting intent into the universe and ultimately leading to us, then no. That’s an absurd notion. But if you are talking about an impersonal creator, such as some arbitrary laws of physics, then that would have to be a consideration. To think this huge universe with it’s hundreds of billions of galaxies all containing hundreds of billions of stars was all made so one of the trillions of lifeforms that have existed on one planet orbiting one star could exist is just putting meaning into the universe that isn’t there.

    The universe is huge, it’s not made for your pleasure.

  390. #390 Hi Danny
    January 7, 2009

    Actually someone randomly gave me money once too. It was just a dollar. And I hadn’t been praying for it. Maybe they had just watched Pay It Forward for all I know. I didn’t ask.

    This is not unheard of.

    And if you look like you’re low on cash, like you haven’t eaten lately, or like you don’t have a place to stay, it’s rather more likely to happen.

    I know because I’ve given money, unsolicited, to people who looked like they could use it more than me. Only once have I given out a $20 bill, when I was a little bit drunk and had just watched a movie about poverty. I doubt that guy was you, Danny. But it happens.

  391. #391 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    Come on . hose Christians are some of the greatest minds that ever lived – Facilis

    I don’t know what “hose Christians” are, so I’ll assume you meant “those Christians”, i.e. those you had previously mentioned: Bill Craig, N.T. Wright and Plantinga.

    You cannot be serious! Can you? I mean, really? Compared to, say, Thales, Euclid, Plato, Aristotle, Archimedes, Augustine, al-Haytham, Ibn Sina, Ibn Rushd, Leonardo, Galileo, Kepler, Hobbes, Descartes, Newton, Leibniz, Locke, Hume, Kant, Euler, Gauss, Darwin, Einstein, Goedel, von Neumann, Turing… – and those are only a few of the tiny minority (consisting almost entirely of well-off males) who have had the chance to show their greatness – and I’ve restricted myself to philosophy, mathematics and science and (through ignorance) to western culture (yes, Islam is part of western culture).

    All of Craig, Wright and Plantinga must have reasonable cognitive abilities – that does not mean their ideas are not stupid. Clever people can find elaborate defences for stupid ideas – that’s what I meant by “the fancy stupid”.

  392. #392 DaveL
    January 7, 2009

    Danny,

    How sad it must be to live in a world where it’s easier to believe there’s an invisible being in the sky doing Jedi Mind Tricks for your benefit than it is to believe a stranger would care.

  393. #393 Wowbagger
    January 7, 2009

    KnockGoats – I don’t know if you’re still about, but Piltdown has responded to a question of yours (well, the ‘other’ you) on an old thread.

  394. #394 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    Reviewing this thread, we have an interesting contrast between three among the theist approaches to arguing with atheists regularly encountered on Pharyngula:

    The slippery: Facilis, who claims there is evidence for God, but carefully avoids saying what it is.

    The obnoxious liar: Brute. (Yes, I realise he’s toned it down, but until he admits and apologises for the early lies, I will continue to regard him with contempt.)

    The “Well I think this and you think that”: danny m, who is neither slippery nor obnoxious, but does not seem to realise there is a difference between informed and uninformed opinions.

    All these are common types; rarest of all is the informed, intelligent and straghtforward, although they do appear occasionally.

  395. #395 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    Wowbagger@392,
    Thanks!

  396. #396 Aquaria
    January 7, 2009

    So Danny thinks prayer works.

    When I was out of work in the early 90s and couldn’t find a decent job to save my life, I didn’t pray for a good job, I pounded pavement (and worked some crap jobs) until I got one. Or I would have waited out the economy. You see, that’s the difference between me and a godbot: I knew why jobs were scarce: The economy sucked, for a lot of reasons. It had nothing to do with some invisible space god. I also knew that sitting on my ass and praying for a job would have me living on the streets.

    When I finally understood that I’m a sufferer of chronic depression, I didn’t pray for a cure. I went to the doctor, and got on anti-depressants. An imaginary friend on a cloud didn’t give me depression because he had some fucked up notion of “testing” me; depression runs through both sides of my family. I just happen to live in a time when science has figured out some ways to combat it.

    When my brother complained about a health problem, I didn’t pray for it to go away. I urged him to go to the doctor, and it turned out he had cancer. He’s alive now, thanks to science, not some imaginary sky friend. If it weren’t for millions of hours of research by thousands of scientists, he might have been diagnosed with another kind of cancer, and treated in a way that would have been detrimental to his form of it. Prayer didn’t–and couldn’t–save him. It was science that saved him.

    When I was divorced, I didn’t pray for a boyfriend or new husband. I hung out with friends, and got active in things I cared about. Eventually, I met someone I could tolerate having around more often than not. Okay, so it was love and all that, too, but there are lots of people I love that I can bear only in small doses (Hi, Mom).

    Over and over again, wishful thinking, aka prayer, did jack shit to improve my life or get me anything I wanted, or help those I love. Getting off my ass and doing something was a lot more reliable.

  397. #397 SEF
    January 7, 2009

    Atheism relies on the premise that nothing can become something without some sort of intelligent intervention.

    That’s an interesting statement because it can easily be read in either of two completely opposing ways – even ignoring the fact that it’s an untrue description of atheism! See replies in #281 (ctygesen) and #282 (Kel) for people immediately taking it the two different ways.

    1. “Atheism relies on the premise that nothing can become something [unless there's] some sort of intelligent intervention.”

    2. “Atheism relies on the premise that nothing can become something [with no need for] some sort of intelligent intervention.”

  398. #398 SEF
    January 7, 2009

    the cracker is a gift (forget the fictitious strings)

    Just as Nick Lally’s spam was a gift and he has no right to require us to cherish it or publish it unrefuted, nor object to us laughing at the outstanding stupidity of it. Similarly, newspapers (including freely distributed ones) get used to wrap fish and chips or make papier mache penguins, instead of being read and treasured as their egotistical perpetrators would like.

  399. #399 clinteas
    January 7, 2009

    Atheism relies on the premise that nothing can become something without some sort of intelligent intervention.

    The fact that i have no hair,or no belief in deities,does not at all imply that i require an intervention of any kind,for my non-existing hair,or belief,what are you talking about?
    NB : I have plenty of hair left….

  400. #400 SEF
    January 7, 2009

    @ Danny M #363:

    It always seems to come down to the scientific method as to why they do not consider a creator.

    Untrue. Firstly, people (at least here!) generally have considered a creator. It’s just that the intelligent, well-educated and honest ones then rejected the idea as wrong after all that consideration; whereas the stupid, ignorant, dishonest are too shallow to consider things properly at all or they have vested interests in hanging on to religious lies.

    One deconvert recently posting here, Dan Silverman, didn’t have science playing any part in his deconversion. The whole of reality is against religions being true. Science is merely the icing on the cake for finding out what really is true instead. There were atheists long before there was a decent quantity and quality of science. Eg The Bible mentions their existence – though only in order to dishonestly attack them of course.

    You’ve already admitted your profound ignorance on many things. What you’re being dishonest about is in pretending your ignorance doesn’t matter when it does matter (and in other circumstances you would be fully aware of that, eg in consulting/hiring any sort of expert). If you took the trouble to educate yourself, you’d find out why your “proof” of god by coincidence and confirmation bias is no such thing. You’re apparently the sort of person who could convince themselves they had a viable gambling system too. It’s those and other very common human flaws which have led you to believe foolishly in stuff which isn’t true, eg your god.

  401. #401 Stanton
    January 7, 2009

    Firstly, people (at least here!) generally have considered a creator. It’s just that the intelligent, well-educated and honest ones then rejected the idea as wrong after all that consideration; whereas the stupid, ignorant, dishonest are too shallow to consider things properly at all or they have vested interests in hanging on to religious lies.

    A correction: not all intelligent and or rational people necessarily reject the idea of a creator. Some intelligent and or rational people with religious beliefs consider it unnecessary and or inappropriate to involve the aforementioned belief of said creator in unrelated matters. For instance, I believe in God (and that God used the laws of physics to create our current universe), and accept Jesus Christ as my savior, but, I think William Dembski, of Discovery Institute infamy, is an utterly malicious idiot for saying that all sciences are incomplete without involvement of Christ.

  402. #402 Brute
    January 7, 2009

    Good morning. Where were we………

    Interesting case study…………

    I find it rather curious that the majority of the participants in this thread passionately defend their belief system, (a belief in nothing?).

    You see, I entered your “church” (gathering place) and attacked your philosophical doctrines and many objected as strongly as the CADC, (whatever that is) has to a perceived attack on their spiritual beliefs.

    Is it possible that you, (collectively), have more in common with the religious fundamentalist than you thought? You felt threatened within the confines of your “church” and lashed out?

  403. #403 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    Brute,

    Can your lies, scumbag. What you actually did was start posting comments about Obama being a Christian, which was somehow supposed to be something no-one here knew. You dishonesty quote-mined a speech of his, falsely claimed no-one here criticised his religiosity, and referred to him as “Barry Hussein”, which only racist turds do, and “The Messiah”, which no-one ever does other than satirically.

    Atheism, if that’s what you’re referring to as “philosophical doctrines” and “spiritual beliefs”, is a lack of belief in gods. That’s all. Atheists don’t have a common “belief system” beyond that.

    Is it possible that you, (collectively), have more in common with the religious fundamentalist than you thought? – Brute

    No, it isn’t. Do you really think we haven’t heard that crap a thousand times, fuckwit? People “lashed out” at you because you’re a lying racist moron.

  404. #404 Matt Heath
    January 7, 2009

    referred to him as “Barry Hussein”, which only racist turds doracists turds and the relentlessly sarcastic (like at Wonkette). I’m fairly sure is the former, though.

  405. #405 Brute
    January 7, 2009

    “scumbag”, “fuckwit”?

    KnockGoats,

    I’ll have to remember those two in the event I happen to debate with another 11 year old.

  406. #406 SEF
    January 7, 2009

    A correction: not all intelligent and or rational people necessarily reject the idea of a creator.

    That’s not a correction. Those would be the dishonest ones I already mentioned – a condition which you carefully (and dishonestly!) excluded from your version. You then continue with further dishonesties in the rest of your post. It’s habitual with you.

    Honesty is the most important factor. All religious people absolutely have to be dishonest about their religion/religiosity – the more religious, the more dishonest. That comes about because reality (and any other religion!) contradicts the religion. The most honest among the religious, such as the modern type of Unitarian who admits to merely wanting there to be a sky-daddy and doesn’t claim to really know anything about its properties (and who, consequently, fails to persecute rival religionists for having different rituals) or the modern type of Buddhist (rather than the original god-believing but ignoring type), being barely religious at all.

    Intelligence is what allows an honest person to work out by themselves and very quickly that religion is bogus. Education (in terms of real life as well as in academia) is what pushes a person of lesser intelligence to eventually work out that religion is bogus (possibly only when specifically directed towards the key contradictions by other people). But honesty is always essential to the process. Eg the ones who’ve worked out religion’s bogosity but who decide to run the show for their own more immediate benefit (instead of imaginary future benefit), by still calling themselves religious, are also dishonest.

  407. #407 SEF
    January 7, 2009

    Oops – very sorry to Stanton for mixing Brute’s post at #401 with his @#400, while paging up and down in the browser window. My “You then continue with further dishonesties in the rest of your post.” no longer applies, since it was based on Brute’s post’s contents. However everything else still applies, including the habitualness among the religious of lying (including the necessary self-deceptions to avoid themselves noticing).

  408. #408 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    Brute,
    “Scumbag” and “fuckwit” are purely descriptive terms in the case of a lying racist moron such as yourself.

  409. #409 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Brute, you are confusing someone telling us to consider a creator (god), with us telling them they must not believe. You need to see the disctincion.

    A lot of atheists, including myself, grew up in religious households. The irrationanlity of trying to reconcile the bible (a terrible book that bites its own tail time and time again) with the real world caused us to consider the option of no god. Then all the irrationality fell by the wayside.

  410. #410 Don't Panic
    January 7, 2009

    I’m confused by the “random guy gave me $20, therefore God” argument. How is that supposed to work? I mean, doesn’t it violate the whole “Free Will” aspects of God’s inscrutability? If he/she/it is free to muck around with one person’s mind to get them to hand a stranger $20, why not go whole hog and simply twist everyone’s head to “believe in (a single unified) God”? Save them all from the fiery pit and all.

    Really, the concept of free will is so inviolate that this can’t be done to save everyone from an eternity of torture, but to prove to one guy God is willing to make some other random person into a meat puppet long enough to have them fork over $20?

  411. #411 ctygesen
    January 7, 2009

    @Brute

    Is it possible that you, (collectively), have more in common with the religious fundamentalist than you thought? You felt threatened within the confines of your “church” and lashed out?

    Is it possible that your version of these events is inaccurate and self-serving?

    Bitching about the insults instead of addressing the substance is intellectual white-flaggery.

  412. #412 Rudy
    January 7, 2009

    I said PZ’s stunt was tasteless and disrespectful, people answer by saying that taste is subjective, and it was *supposed* to be disrespectful! And besides, what the folks in the congregation did, was way worse!

    I’m glad that these Pharyngula folks agree with me about the Cracker affair.

    Confusingly, they write as though they are arguing with me :)

  413. #413 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    PZ’s stunt was of no consequence. It was just a nailed cracker, and a couple of books put in the trash. But yes it was disrespectful to anyone who thinks crackers are important. Tough.

  414. #414 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    Rudy,
    Don’t be stupider than you can help. You completely ignored the context, and made clear you considered being disrespectful was a bad thing.

  415. #415 Brute
    January 7, 2009

    KnockGoats,

    Right. I think your Mom may be calling for you to come up from out of the basement now…..

    Nerd of Redhead,

    Who is forcing you to consider a creator? Take it or leave it if you want. I was merely attempting (apparently unsuccessfully) to compare the oversensitivity of the adherents of the two theologies.

    I respect your opinion and your conclusion regarding a deity. I believe that the (in this case) Christians are simply requesting the same.

    Remember, the Golden Rule?

  416. #416 danny m
    January 7, 2009

    I don’t ever ask God for money, much less 20 dollars. And i asked for a week not my whole life.
    And anyone that knew anything about addiction would not say that my will power saved me.
    I’m just telling you that i have prayed for things and gotten them. You can pray for your vodka to overfill or whatever if you want. I have no desire to ask for that when i already know He does practical things for me.

  417. #417 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    the adherents of the two theologies. – Brute

    Atheists, by definition, do not have a theology, fuckwit.

    I believe that the (in this case) Christians are simply requesting the same. – Brute

    No, they are demanding that no-one criticise their stupid beliefs, fuckwit.

  418. #418 Feynmaniac
    January 7, 2009

    You see, I entered your “church” (gathering place) and attacked your philosophical doctrines and many objected as strongly as the CADC, (whatever that is) has to a perceived attack on their spiritual beliefs.

    Way not to respond to any of the contents of the criticisms. Also, you leave out the fact that you were shown to be wrong about no one criticizing Obama’s religion.

    Is it possible that you, (collectively), have more in common with the religious fundamentalist than you thought? You felt threatened within the confines of your “church” and lashed out?

    Is it possible that your description of us it is merely projection?

    Also, Blake’s Law

    In any discussion of atheism (skepticism, etc.), the probability that someone will compare a vocal atheist to religious fundamentalists increases to one.

    As with Godwin’s Law, the person who compares the atheist to a religious fundamentalist is considered to have lost the argument.

    I also don’t think anyone felt “threatened” by any of your comments.

    I’ll have to remember those two in the event I happen to debate with another 11 year old.

    Sigh…. now you’re complaining about insults. Are you actually going to respond to the substance of any of the comments?

  419. #419 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Brute, has anybody said you must become an atheist? No, and that is unlikely. But people like yourself indicate we will rot in hell if we don’t accept god/creator. Now, what part of that difference are you having trouble with, so we can explain it to you?

    By the way, science is not a democratic process. Your opinion matters not to science. My opinion does matter to science to a very small degree since I am still a working scientist. If you want science to consider a creator, it must obey the rules of science. Oh yes, god cannot be the result or cause of any observation. So creationism/ID is not science, and never will be. Science cannot refute religion, and religion cannot refute science. Science is only refuted by more science. But religion looks silly if it magic book doesn’t follow what science says are the facts of the natural world.

  420. #420 Brute
    January 7, 2009

    Feynmaniac,

    Also, you leave out the fact that you were shown to be wrong about no one criticizing Obama’s religion.

    I already addressed this…….

    As with Godwin’s Law, the person who compares the atheist to a religious fundamentalist is considered to have lost the argument.

    What kind of nonsense is this? Internet use law made up by some kid in 1990? Please…..

    Come on….you seem to be a rational adult. I expressed interest in your theological opinion. We are discussing the existance of God which deals with theology. Whether you like the word or not, you do possess a theological opinion.

    (Stimulating discussion by the way).

  421. #421 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    Hehe. He ALMOST got to the Courtier’s Reply too. Nice.

  422. #422 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Brute, either loose the attitude or go away. You are discussing nothing, just attempting to ridicule with your feeble mind.

  423. #423 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    I respect your opinion and your conclusion regarding a deity. – Brute

    Sure you do. That’s why you came here spouting lies and insults.

  424. #424 MH
    January 7, 2009

    Why is it that retards can’t quote properly?

  425. #425 Ray Ladbury
    January 7, 2009

    Brute, I am an agnostic with very definite theological opinions–mainly to the effect that the existence or nonexistence of God is not a question we mortals are likely to be able to answer to any satisfactory level. So, like Kierkegaard, I’ve come to believe that belief in God is a choice. It can be the right choice–as it arguably was for Gandhi, Martin Luther King and Dietrich Bonhoeffer–or the wrong choice–as it was for Timothy McVeigh, Eric Rudolf or the Christian Identity types. I can respect the decision to believe. Indeed, I have many intelligent friends who do. At the same time, I can also understand the reservations some of my atheist friends that such a decision can serve as an end to inquiry.
    I have not decided the question of belief in my own life, but I can say that I find the idea of a personal god–one who actively drives the bus–to be problematic. Indeed, it is difficult to imagine a God that would “design in” sickle-cell anemia as a hedge against malaria or wasp larvae that devour a spider from the inside out. It would be easy to conclude that any God who chooses to design in such a manner would have to be a right bastard. On the other hand, I have no problem at all with Spinoza’s God. But then, as Stephen Roberts said, “I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do.”

  426. #426 Feynmaniac
    January 7, 2009

    What kind of nonsense is this? Internet use law made up by some kid in 1990? Please…..

    No, it was made by Blake Stacey , and you comments add further evidence to his law.

    I expressed interest in your theological opinion. We are discussing the existance of God which deals with theology. Whether you like the word or not, you do possess a theological opinion.

    My theological opinion is the same as my opinion on unicorn husbandry.

    Also, can you please use quotation marks in your comments to make it easier to read?

  427. #427 Joe Cracker
    January 7, 2009

    HAHAHA FUNNY HAHA!!! The one about Obama is HILARIOUS!

    If these punks take their argument further, they will find out that the founding fathers were NOT christian.

    GOTHCA!!!

  428. #428 Brute
    January 7, 2009

    But people like yourself indicate we will rot in hell if we don’t accept god/creator.

    Nerd of Redhead,

    I thought that you don’t believe in hell, (or heaven) so why do you care what they think? Why so touchy?

    I think that the New England Patriots are a wonderful football team…..maybe you don’t. What does it matter?

    No one is forcing you to believe in anything…… Your Atheisim is evidence of that. You’re free to believe whatever you want to.

  429. #429 Brute
    January 7, 2009

    Ray Ladbury,

    That is the most reasoned, level headed comment I’ve read here. Thank you.

    Also, can you please use quotation marks in your comments to make it easier to read?

    Feynmaniac,

    Yes.

  430. #430 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Brute, we have to put up with that shit from society as whole because we are a minority. But this this an atheist site, so godbots like yourself need to loose the attitude in order to be polite-and usually don’t. And the attitude I explained is implicit in your statments. If you want to discuss, quit trying to ridicule, and ask honest questions. We will either respond to your attitude with attitude of our own, or to your honest questions with honest answers. Make up your mind and live with the consequences.

  431. #431 Rudy
    January 7, 2009

    Knocksgoat,

    I ignored the context (initially) because the post I was responding to, didn’t provide it. Nobody’s fault but mine.

    People kindly provided the context (and gave me a hook “Cracker Gate” to google with).

    The context turned out not to change my opinion of PZ’s actions. This appears to upset you, or at least make you question my intelligence. You are free to hold your opinion of course.

    Yes, I do think being disrepectful to this particular cracker is A Bad Thing. I also believe it is just a cracker. My attempt at humor in my last post seems to have missed it’s mark, despite the smiley. Oh well.

    Imagine your reaction if PZ had taken the only known copy of a lost treatise on mechanics by Archimedes, and burned it. It is, after all, just a piece of paper (or parchment). Now imagine the yawns of Jack Chick about this.

    This is the position we are in, most of us here on Pharyngula, with respect to the Catholic Eucharist host. It is no biggie to us, but for some reason that’s hard to fathom, those Catholics over there are getting all upset about people disrespecting it. There must be something wrong with them; it’s just a cracker.

    If you have trouble empathizing with them, and the nuttiness of Donoghue and the Catholic League certainly makes that understandable, maybe go back to my kachina doll example. Or the Native Americans who wanted museums to stop displaying sacred items, for a real life situation.

  432. #432 CJO
    January 7, 2009

    Imagine your reaction if PZ had taken the only known copy of a lost treatise on mechanics by Archimedes, and burned it. It is, after all, just a piece of paper (or parchment).

    In your investigation of the context, you obviously missed the sheer density of utterly failed analogies in the comments expressing concerns similar to yours. Pray tell, what does my reaction to the wanton destruction of a priceless, unique object have to do with the disposal of a smidgen of stale cracker of no distinction and negligible value?

    Go back and read more crackergate, seriously. Everything you are feebly trying to say has been said, and been shown to be bullshit.

  433. #433 CJO
    January 7, 2009

    Yes, I do think being disrepectful to this particular cracker is A Bad Thing. I also believe it is just a cracker.

    Please put two and two together, because you’re not making sense. There is no way to distinguish “this particular cracker” if it’s “just a cracker.” So, you’re either categorically opposed to the abuse of stale bread products, or you’re not truthfully reporting your beliefs.

  434. #434 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Rudy, you have expressed your opinion. We hear you but don’t, and won’t, agree with you. Now, what are you options?
    You can keep harping on it, and get attitude returned for your attitude,
    Or, you can accept that we have heard your concerns, and it is time to move on.
    Your choice.

  435. #435 Aquaria
    January 7, 2009

    And anyone that knew anything about addiction would not say that my will power saved me.

    I’ve worked in the drug programs, and I know one thing for sure: AA and the other religious oriented programs have abysmal success rates. When they do have long term successes, it is merely by trading one addiction for another: Drugs for religion.

    Willpower doesn’t overcome addiction alone, but without willpower, you can’t even start to overcome it. You certainly can’t get to the other side of the road without it.

    Any addict who gives too much credit to the crutch that helped him walk again rather than walking on his own, is more likely to fall again. I wish I could say I came up with that line on my own, but it came from a drug counselor I worked with.

  436. #436 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    Imagine your reaction if PZ had taken the only known copy of a lost treatise on mechanics by Archimedes, and burned it. It is, after all, just a piece of paper (or parchment). – Rudy

    No it isn’t; it contains important historical information. The cracker is just a cracker, which was intended to be destroyed. See the difference?

  437. #437 Rudy
    January 7, 2009

    Nerd’s: Um, I didn’t think I was harping on it; Knocksgoat seemed to think I was being disingenuous, so I wanted to clarify.

    And I didn’t call anyone a moron or stupid, so I think most of the “attitude” was coming my way.

    CJo, what distinguishes this particular cracker is that a religious community used it in a ritual of theirs. Disrespecting it is, to most people of a politically liberal bent, disrespecting that community.
    So, it’s being disrespectful the way writing cuss words on a Mormon temple would be (though not illegal that way; well, make it the sidewalk outside). That is, rude, boorish, and insulting. Inside that community of course, their conception of the disrespect runs deeper, and is not one I share.

    You are not the only one to say that my arguments were raised and blown away in Cracker Gate comment threads. That is a puzzling thing to say: if the arguments were so compelling, why not just repeat them here?

    Anyway, I’ll give this a rest.

  438. #438 KnockGoats
    January 7, 2009

    So, it’s being disrespectful the way writing cuss words on a Mormon temple would be (though not illegal that way; well, make it the sidewalk outside). – Rudy

    Hey, that’s a good idea! Given the Mormon lies and bigotry over Prop. 8, I think “cuss words” (what a quaint expression!) on the sidewalk outside every Mormon Temple in the world are called for.

  439. #439 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    That is a puzzling thing to say: if the arguments were so compelling, why not just repeat them here?

    Your almost exact arguments we had seen at least 200+ times before. We are just bored/fatigued with them.

    I don’t think you were harping on it, but you were heading there. See the fatigue factor.

  440. #440 Rudy
    January 7, 2009

    Knocksgoat,

    Quaint indeed, I’ve got two kids, and I have developed a terrible habit of cleaning up my formerly colorful language :( Even the internet doesn’t seem to fix it.

    I strongly agree with your emotion about Prop. 8.

  441. #441 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    —-”We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”—-
    This is a statement that a crap load of scientist signed recently. There are reasons I bring this up.
    1. People seem to think that I just turn a blind eye to scientist. Ok.. I am not a scientist of any sort, so I have to-in a large way-listen to the scientist. These people who signed this (http://www.discovery.org/scripts/viewDB/filesDB-download.php?command=download&id=660) have pretty cool credentials.
    2. A whole bunch of scientist say examination of it should be encouraged. Now, tell me why I should not listen to them but rather listen to the other scientists. Seeing as how I am no scientist, I listen to the ones who are open to careful examination, which I thought was what the whole scientific method is about.
    The home page is (http://www.dissentfromdarwin.org/index.php)
    Now, you may say the arguments over, but these scientists suggest that it is not over. Why should I listen to you over them? And that is not a rhetorical question.

  442. #442 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    And what’s up with all this cracker talk? Why does anyone care that someone did something to a cracker?

  443. #443 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    Hehe. Good question. Catholics seem to be very attached to magic crackers.

    You didn’t just link to the discovery institute did you? Ooof.

    Danny, you’ll learn I suspect. But painfully slowly.

    The DI=ID=Creationism and as we’ve stated that’s not an scientific explanation.

    The DI has done no research. They’re favorite ruse is Irreducible Complexity… and that hypothesis/goofiness has been smacked down so many times it’s laughable that anyone brings it up anymore.

    Look up the Dover case or go to youtube and search Ken Miller. He gives a lecture on the Dover case and his testimony. It’ll be a perfect primer for you. Also, Ken Miller is a Catholic.

  444. #444 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M, we know all about the petition. Ever hear of the Steve petition? Only signed by scientists name Steve or a reasonable variant thereof, and it backs the theory of evolution in its entirety. Guess what, the Steve petition has more signatures than yours, including Nobel Prize winners. And guess what would happen if all other scientists signed the Steve petition. The numbers would be overwheming in favor of evolution. And the list your scientists reads like a who’s who of failures.

  445. #445 Rudy
    January 7, 2009

    Hey man, don’t go there. You don’t want to know about the cracker.

  446. #446 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    Uhg. Failed to proofread… again.

  447. #447 Rudy
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M, it takes a little work to figure this out, but most of the scientists who are against evolution are working way out of their specialty, and have a religious axe to grind, or in many cases are engineers, not scientists. (Not that there’s anything wrong with being an engineer; but I’ve known them to be a little more susceptible to crackpot ideas than the average scientist. Just sayin’).

    The great, great majority of working scientists, esp. in the relevant areas, accept evolution as the fact that it is, the same way that astronomers all agree that the earth goes around the sun.

  448. #448 StuV
    January 7, 2009

    http://www.discovery.org

    You must be new here.

  449. #449 Owlmirror
    January 7, 2009

    Now, you may say the arguments over, but these scientists suggest that it is not over. Why should I listen to you over them? And that is not a rhetorical question.

    Hm.

    Something you have to understand is that all scientists argue their science from actual falsifiable evidence. They publish their findings in peer-reviewed journals, with the materials and methods and what they concluded from their experiments.

    “Peer review” means that a fellow scientist who is knowledgeable in the field being published in will review the paper, and if there are any problems with it, point out what the problems are.

    This may sound like scientists can form a club to exclude someone who has a dissenting opinion, but you have to understand that you can’t just call anything science; science has standards of evidence.

    At the Dover trial, Michael Behe, who is a biochemist, made certain claims about certain biological systems (blood clotting; bacterial flagellum). Some of these claims turned out to be false. The most charitable conclusion is that he was lazy; that as a scientist, he had not done the due diligence of informing himself of developments in the field he was making claims about. The most uncharitable conclusion is that he was lying.

    He also claimed that it wasn’t necessary for science to demand falsifiable evidence. When pressed, he agreed that astrology would be a science if the requirement for falsifiable evidence was removed. This would be an absurd lowering of standards.

    Everything that scientists say about evolution and the age of the earth is based on the falsifiable evidence from geology, nuclear chemistry, palaeontology, and biology.

    Those who “dissent” do not actually have falsifiable evidence to support their dissent. They are either ignorant of the actual science, or deny that it matters, or deny that it exists.

    That’s why you should listen to us: We are simply supporting the scientists who provide the real evidence.

  450. #450 Feynmaniac
    January 7, 2009

    That is a puzzling thing to say: if the arguments were so compelling, why not just repeat them here?

    Will this cracker thing ever finish?

    IT’S A FRACKIN’ CRACKER 1000+ comments

    Fresh Cracker 1500 + comments

    The Great Desecration 2300 + comments

    There are a few more threads with 1000+ comments dealing with this. Quite frankly I think anything that could be said has already been said multiple times.

  451. #451 ctygesen
    January 7, 2009

    You must be new here.

    +5 funny.

  452. #452 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    A thousand scientist saying something that is contradictory to what 500 scientist say does not make the thousand correct. Science is not a democracy.
    As for the people having a religous axe to grind, that may or may not be. In a lot of cases I think it probably is. But I think it’s true for a lot of people on the other side of the argument also. Just because someone is not willing to believe in God does not mean that he is dead wrong. Sometimes it makes a huge difference and other times it does not.
    Noble prizes, they have been known to give stuff like that to dictators. I think Al Gore got something like that, a noble peace thing or something, I don’t really understand what war he stopped but whatever.
    All I am saying is– You say these scientists are quacks, other people say they are not. But I am subject to ridicule for questioning the Darwinian theory for evolution? Look, I don’t know who the better scientists are, but at least I see what they wrote. In my opinion, you have no scientific process without careful consideration. So when I hear people mock these scientist because they stated what they stated, it makes me question why.

  453. #453 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    Probably the first thing you did was to try and see what was wrong with the scientist. More than likely you never stopped and thought, hmm, I wonder if there is anything to it. And that tells me something.

  454. #454 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    erm Danny.

    Watch this.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVRsWAjvQSg

    You may learn something. I’m crossing my fingers.

  455. #455 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    I find it rather curious that the majority of the participants in this thread passionately defend their belief system, (a belief in nothing?).

    Gah! Atheism does not equate to science. We defend science because it works. Just because you are ignorant of science it doesn’t mean we are “passionately defending our belief system.” You’re wrong when it comes to science, it’s as simple as that.

    You see, I entered your “church” (gathering place) and attacked your philosophical doctrines and many objected as strongly as the CADC, (whatever that is) has to a perceived attack on their spiritual beliefs.Nice strawman attack, again quit comparing science to atheism. You attacked science you obviously don’t understand and people responded. It has nothing to do with atheism

    Is it possible that you, (collectively), have more in common with the religious fundamentalist than you thought? You felt threatened within the confines of your “church” and lashed out?

    No, being a troll gets an extreme response. You give a straw-man attack on something you don’t understand and get lashed for it by people who do understand it. Again, don’t equate science to atheism.

  456. #456 danny m
    January 7, 2009

    What the hell is a troll?

  457. #457 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Danny, you are right about science not being a democracy. But, lets say it is. Now, lets get rid of the engineers from your petition (they are not scientists), along the dentists, doctors, and vets (same reason). Also, drop the requirement that only Steves sign the other petition. Now, would numbers like 100,000 for evolution versus 150-200 against seem like there is any real argument in science about the validity of evolution?

    Now, if the scientists against evolution want to change our minds, here is what they have to do. They have to find physical evidence that is not supported by the theory of evolution, but is supported by another theory. Please note that there is no competing theory at this time in the scientific literature, making that job even harder. Then they have to publish this data, along with the competing theory in the primary scientific literature. There is a Nobel Prize waiting for just such a scientist who overthrows the Theory of Evolution.

    Also, keep this in mind. SCOTUS has declared creationism is a relgious theory. A US distric court has included ID as a religious theory. So there is an extremely high burden of proof for any scientist proposing ID/creationism in any form.

  458. #458 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    Danny. You contradict yourself without even knowing you’ve done it.

    A scientist standing up and saying “I believe in Unicorns.” doesn’t make it a scientific idea. It’s not even worth noting.

    A scientist standing up and saying I’ve found a herd of Unicorns on a small island in the North Sea… could be.

  459. #459 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M

    All I am saying is– You say these scientists are quacks, other people say they are not. But I am subject to ridicule for questioning the Darwinian theory for evolution? Look, I don’t know who the better scientists are, but at least I see what they wrote. In my opinion, you have no scientific process without careful consideration. So when I hear people mock these scientist because they stated what they stated, it makes me question why.

    Ok. Tell us what specific evolutionary research is wrong, and then show the research that you think demonstrates that the scientific consensus on evolution is incorrect specific to that research. What would be nice is actual research done by scientists in the appropriate fields of study instead of non related sciences. Just claiming they don’t agree with it doesn’t do much without anything to back it up.

    The ToE is supported by many fields of science with research done by tens of thousands of autonomous scientists in their fields of study. This includes paleontology, biology, genetics, anthropology, geology, etc..

    All anyone is asking is to actually supply actual research that shows the currently accepted consensus to be wrong and they will be given a hearing in the “courts of science”. That is how science works.

    Making vast claims about the holes in the ToE or the fact that science has been wrong before or that scientists aren’t fair or they are mean or that some kook has the evidence but doesn’t want to show it because of the discriminating nature of the scientists is not providing any support for their assertions.

  460. #460 ctygesen
    January 7, 2009

    @DannyM

    And that tells me something.

    And you’re telling us that you don’t understand science. Start with Behe. Read what scientists not-on-the-DI-list have said about his work.

    Read the transcripts of the Dover trial where Behe admitted on the stand that he didn’t follow current scientific developments.

    Read the peer reviewed studies in reputable journals that have demonstrated the soundness of Intelligent Design.

    Oh wait…

  461. #461 Aquaria
    January 7, 2009

    What you are for insisting on promoting your ignorance as fact, against all discernible evidence.

  462. #462 Owlmirror
    January 7, 2009

    A thousand scientist saying something that is contradictory to what 500 scientist say does not make the thousand correct. Science is not a democracy.

    Right, exactly. Science is based on the evidence.

    Evolutionary biology has the evidence. Evolutionary biology wins.

    All I am saying is– You say these scientists are quacks, other people say they are not. But I am subject to ridicule for questioning the Darwinian theory for evolution? Look, I don’t know who the better scientists are, but at least I see what they wrote. In my opinion, you have no scientific process without careful consideration.

    Again, right. Evolutionary biology follows the scientific process; those who “question” (or more accurately, deny) evolution don’t. How hard is this to understand?

    You wrote: “I see what the ["ID" proponents] wrote”.

    Did they write anything based on evidence?

    Probably the first thing you did was to try and see what was wrong with the scientist. More than likely you never stopped and thought, hmm, I wonder if there is anything to it.

    Oh, I’ve wondered if there was something to it. And then I see what the argument is, and it’s just an argument from ignorance; a flat-out denial based on assertion.

    And those are the good arguments. Some of them are even dumber than that.

  463. #463 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    “The DI=ID=Creationism” So are you saying that if someone believes that there is an Intelligent Creator, that that person can not use the scientific process?
    This is the main point of this post— The statement they made did not mention creation, they mentioned darwinian evolution. So it does not matter what proof they may or may not have on creation.
    They say,
    “Hey, let’s look at darwinian evolution again.”
    And your response is,
    “No! No I will not look at the darwinian theory again to examine it, because there is no proof for creation.”
    That really does not make sense.

  464. #464 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    On that list
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ty1Bo6GmPqM

    A thousand scientist saying something that is contradictory to what 500 scientist say does not make the thousand correct. Science is not a democracy.

    There’s more historians who deny the holocaust than biologists who reject evolution. There’s always going to be a few people who go against the standard, I even heard of an astrophysicist recently who wrote a book claiming the earth was the centre of the universe. The truth is that there’s an overwhelming consensus on evolution, it’s one of the strongest theories in science. The Discovery Institute (who wouldn’t defend Intelligent Design under oath) is trying to play a political game.

    In the end it doesn’t matter how many scientists signed that list. Science is done in academia, and that’s one place where Intelligent Design is not. It’s re-branded creationism, and there’s still no evidence for it. No tests done. No real peer reviewed work. But there has been a hell of a lot of evangelism for the idea, and that’s not how science works.

    This remember that there are millions of scientistis around the world and the majority have a belief in the supernatural in some from (from theist to pantheist.) the overwhelming majority of those have no problem with evolution, not to mention as do most of the major churches. Evolution works, and the DI is dishonest for playing their game in the public arena as opposed to fighting it out in academia.

  465. #465 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    Danny, what is Darwinian evolution? As a working scientist, I am unfamiliar with the term. In this country, it is only used by creobots and IDiots. You are showing your ignorance. Darwin first proposed evolution 150 years ago. Since then, 150 years of improvements have been made to his theory, and it now includes things like genes, genomes, DNA, and other things not included in Darwin’s original theory. The present day Theory of Evolution is usually call Modern Synthesis.

    Cite the primary scientific literature where evidence against Modern Synthesis exists. Or, give up.

  466. #466 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    Danny. Just watch the video I posted the link to. Watch the whole thing. THEN comeback. It addresses everything you’ve brought up, essentially.

    Scientists signing a letter isn’t science. It’s propaganda. You’re right science isn’t a democracy. Letters mean nothing. Research is everything. They have NONE. ID isn’t science.

  467. #467 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    What the hell is a troll?

    http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=troll

    “One who posts a deliberately provocative message to a newsgroup or message board with the intention of causing maximum disruption and argument” – fits what Brute has done quite well.

  468. #468 Danny M
    January 7, 2009

    Actually, some people here have written some thoughtfull replies, so my last post i guess doesn’t apply to all of you.

  469. #469 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 7, 2009

    Danny M, this is an old story for most of us but not for you. Here is proof that creationism equals intelligent design. It is cdesign proponentsists.

  470. #470 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 7, 2009

    They say,
    “Hey, let’s look at darwinian evolution again.”
    And your response is,
    “No! No I will not look at the darwinian theory again to examine it, because there is no proof for creation.”
    That really does not make sense.

    No Danny M, sorry. Its the fact they aren’t bringing anything new to the table. It is the same rehashed and debunked canards over and over. Yes sometimes there is a new twist (IC for example) but its the same thing over and over again with no actual empiricism involved. There is lots of talk about the holes in the theory but they have nothing that fills those holes.

    ID and creationism in many ways are just a constant attack on evolution with nothing to offer in return.

    There is absolutely zero evidence that backs Creationism nor Intelligent Design, just lots of wishful thinking and hand waving.

    If they want to be taken seriously

    and I’m repeating myself here

    THEY NEED TO OFFER UP RESEARCH THAT ACTUALLY SHOWS THE CURRENTLY ACCEPTED RESEARCH TO BE WRONG. And beyond that, disproving a date, or a small thing in DNA or other minutia does not take down the whole theory as it is supported by multiple fields with hundreds of thousands of peer reviewed papers.

  471. #471 Rudy
    January 7, 2009

    Feynmaniac:
    >Quite frankly I think anything that could be said has already been >said multiple times.

    The multiverse in action!

  472. #472 danny m
    January 7, 2009

    Cool, a real live scientist in the room!

    There was a time when only a few people believed in evolution. The amount of people in the evolution group doesn’t impress me.
    That reminds me of the church people who told me not to cuss cause it’s wrong. I say, “Why is it wrong, where does the bible say that?” They say, “Every preacher will tell you it’s wrong. They can’t all be wrong.”
    Yeah right, that’s what everyone thought when the catholics tried to rule the world in the dark ages. They told everyone what the bible said and didn’t permit people to see for themselves. Majority means crap to me.
    I’ll look at that thing but not right now. I’m going to hang with my wife. You guys take it easy. She says no more blogging for now. See you later and just say no to trolling.

  473. #473 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    While a few scientists are evangelising ID, millions of scientists are continuing their work on evolutionary biology.

    Evolution is tested every day in the laboratory, and it’s tested every day in the field. I can’t think of a single scientific theory that has been more controversial than evolution, and when theories are controversial, people devise tests to see if they’re right. Evolution has been tested continuously for almost 150 years and not a single observation, not a single experimental result, has ever emerged in 150 years that contradicts the general outlines of the theory of evolution.

    Any theory that can stand up to 150 years of continuous testing is a pretty darn good theory. We use evolution to develop drugs. We use evolution to develop vaccines. We use evolution to manage wildlife. We use evolution to interpret our own genome. Every one of these uses of evolution is a test, because if the use turns out to be inadequate, we would then go back and question the very idea of evolution itself. But evolution has turned out to be such a powerful, productive, and hardworking theory that it’s survived that test of time. – Ken Miller on evolution

  474. #474 StuV
    January 7, 2009

    There was a time when only a few people believed in evolution. The amount of people in the evolution group doesn’t impress me.

    Fine. Forget the numbers. What about the EVIDENCE?

  475. #475 oaksterdam
    January 7, 2009

    No! No I will not look at the darwinian theory again to examine it, because there is no proof for creation.”

    All the time I’m saying that. When I wake up in the morning the first thing I do is throw open a window and shout “No! No I will not look at the darwinian theory again to examine it, because there is no proof for creation.”

    And my neighbors always shout “You freaking stoner! This is downtown Oakland! Go find a fundie to shout at” “Shitloads of smart people already examined it again!” And wrote about it!” “And ‘shitloads’ is kinda science-y, shut up” “Less shouting, more research!” “You holding?”

    Then we have our atheistic baby stomping trisexual orgy and brainstorming session on how to overthrow the world. I’ll admit we copped that last bit from Berkeley. Our overthrow will be better. We got Neurosis and Too $hort on the soundtrack.

    Cool, a real live scientist in the room!

    oh for fucks sake.

  476. #476 Kevin Camp
    January 7, 2009

    Kel: It was acquired under false pretenses because when you receive communion, you receive it with the understanding that it is to be consumed immediately and not taken out of the church. Therefore, to receive communion and to not consume it immediately, but to instead take it out of the church would be acquiring it under false pretenses regardless of what you plan to do with it afterwards. Suppose someone came to me and said “Hey, here’s a FSM poster that PZ Myers gave me. When he gave it to me he said it was very important to him, but that I could have it if I would take good care of it. You can have it and I don’t care what you do with it.” Would it be right for me to tear it up and throw it in the trash in front of a bunch of people? I don’t think so. It wouldn’t be illegal and it wouldn’t be persecuting him, but it wouldn’t be the ethical thing to do either.

    Also, in case I wasn’t clear:
    I don’t think that Christians are “persecuted” in this country any more than I think white men are discriminated against.
    I do consider what Prof. Myers did Christianity bashing.
    I don’t think he should go to jail or receive threats for it.
    I don’t think anyone is a terrible person if they don’t believe in God.
    I do wish we could all just get along.

  477. #477 Owlmirror
    January 7, 2009

    This list was originally posted by abb3w here:
    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2008/11/entropy_and_evolution.php#comment-1222005

    Danny, please read through these points. You don’t have to be a scientist, just figure out which if any you have a problem with. If there is some ID argument that you think is good, compare it to this list and figure out what part of the list it is saying is wrong:

      VARIATION:

    1. Variation exists in all populations.
    2. Some of that variation is heritable.
    3. Base pair sequences are encoded in a set of self-replicating molecules that form templates for making proteins.
    4. Combinations of genes that did not previously exist may arise via “Crossing over” during meiosis, which alters the sequence of base pairs on a chromosome.
    5. Copying errors (mutations) can also arise, because the self-replication process is of imperfect (although high) fidelity; these mutations also increase the range of combinations of alleles in a gene pool.
    6. These recombinations and errors produce a tendency for
      successively increasing genetic divergence radiating outward from the initial state of the population.

      SELECTION:

    7. Some of that heritable variation has an influence on the number of offspring able to reproduce in turn, including traits that affect mating opportunities, or survival prospects for either individuals or close relatives.
    8. Characteristics which tend to increase the number of an
      organism’s offspring that are able to reproduce in turn, tend to become more common over generations and diffuse through a population; those that tend to decrease such prospects tend to become rarer.
    9. Unrepresentative sampling can occur in populations which alters the relative frequency of the various alleles for reasons other than survival/reproduction advantages, a process known as “genetic drift”.
    10. Migration of individuals from one population to another can lead to changes in the relative frequencies of alleles in the “recipient” population.

      SPECIATION:

    11. Populations of a single species that live in different environments are exposed to different conditions that can “favor” different traits. These environmental differences can cause two populations to accumulate divergent suites of characteristics.
    12. A new species develops (often initiated by temporary
      environmental factors such as a period of geographic isolation) when a sub-population acquires characteristics which promote or guarantee reproductive isolation from the alternate population, limiting the diffusion of variations thereafter.

      SUFFICIENCY:

    13. The combination of these effects tends to increase diversity of initially similar life forms over time.
    14. Over the time frame from the late Hadean to the present, this becomes sufficient to explain both the diversity within and similarities between the forms of life observed on Earth, including both living forms directly observed in the present, and extinct forms indirectly observed from the fossil record.

     That’s what Evolution IS. If you have a problem with Evolution, you have a problem with one or more of these fourteen points. Which one is it? Provide evidence that any of the points are incorrect.

     While the origins of life are a question of interest to evolutionary biologists and frequently studied in conjunction with researchers from other fields such as geochemistry and organic chemistry, the core of evolutionary theory itself does not rest on a foundation that requires any knowledge about the origins of life on earth. It is primarily concerned with the change and diversification of life after the origins of the earliest living things – although there is not yet a consensus as to how to distinguish “living” from “non-living”.

     Evolution does NOT indicate that all variations are explained this way; that there are no other mechanisms by which variation may arise, be passed, or become prevalent; or that there is no other way life diversifies. Any and all of these may be valid topics for conjecture… but without evidence, they aren’t science.

  478. #478 CJO
    January 7, 2009

    It was acquired under false pretenses because when you receive communion, you receive it with the understanding that it is to be consumed immediately and not taken out of the church.

    Dealt with. Repeatedly and devastatingly. Why are we still going over the same damn arguments, again?

    What you are getting at with that “with the understanding” is some kind of implied contract. No such implication is made during the service. No attempt is made on the part of the church to convey this understanding, nor to confirm that it has been conveyed. The weirdo in the dress gives you a cracker. Full stop. End of episode.

  479. #479 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    Kevin. It was only a big deal to Catholics. If they didn’t hold a silly belief they wouldn’t get offended.

    We ridicule ALL religions here. They’re all pointless. And if pointing at the absurdity of faith and silly beliefs is “bashing” we’re all guilty.

    The Catholic church gives away crackers every sunday and there’s no test or body search after… so don’t pretend some great crime was committed.

  480. #480 CJO
    January 7, 2009

    Suppose someone came to me and said “Hey, here’s a FSM poster that PZ Myers gave me. When he gave it to me he said it was very important to him, but that I could have it if I would take good care of it. You can have it and I don’t care what you do with it.” Would it be right for me to tear it up and throw it in the trash in front of a bunch of people? I don’t think so. It wouldn’t be illegal and it wouldn’t be persecuting him, but it wouldn’t be the ethical thing to do either.

    Sure. Let’s also suppose that PZ was running some kind of cephalopod worshipping scheme involving dispensing large numbers of these posters. And let’s further suppose that someone attended one of his rallies, and rolled his poster up to take home, but found out quickly that folding, not rolling, is the proper way to prepare the Noodly Image for transport. And let’s keep on going and suppose that this person was attacked at the rally for rolling the poster, and later faced threats from many of PZ’s Tentacled Minions, including the threat of sanction from a secular institution to which he or she belonged. Are you still so utterly certain that it would be unethical for you to damage –say, by rolling it up– one of these posters in a demonstration of solidarity with this person who had been so abused?

  481. #481 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    It was acquired under false pretenses because when you receive communion, you receive it with the understanding that it is to be consumed immediately and not taken out of the church. Therefore, to receive communion and to not consume it immediately, but to instead take it out of the church would be acquiring it under false pretenses regardless of what you plan to do with it afterwards.

    So you know it had to be acquired under false pretences. Could it be that the person who received the cracker saved it because they cherished it? Could it be that they weren’t aware of the consequences for not swallowing it? I’m saying that regardless of how it was aquired, PZ is not culpable for how it was obtained.

    In any case it doesn’t matter, because PZ is not Catholic. There is no rule that says that people who are not members of a religion have to abide by the rules of the religion. The question is would you stop eating beef given how sacred it is to the Hindus?

  482. #482 Wowbagger
    January 7, 2009

    CJO, #479

    I’d add to your analogy: it was expected that the first person given the FSM poster by PZ was, his or herself, meant to tear it up in front of PZ after being given it – the crackers, after all, are given to a person to be destroyed – and instead chose not to destroy the poster but take it away and then give it to someone else.

    A part of me is concerned that all this analogy talk is going to bring our dear friend Pete Rooke out of the woodwork…

  483. #483 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    I do wish we could all just get along.

    If people would stop pushing their religion on others then this problem would go away. Stop holding things as sacred above humanity, and stop expecting others to regard what you hold as sacred.

  484. #484 Bachalon
    January 7, 2009

    Danny,

    The difference between a mob majority and a scientific majority is that scientists have evidence.

    By the way, did you still want to chat?

  485. #485 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 7, 2009

    There was a time when only a few people believed in evolution. The amount of people in the evolution group doesn’t impress me.

    yes there was a time few people believed in germ theory as well and gravity and that the sun is the center of the solar system.

    The thing that changed all that?

    Science. Evolution has the evidence and the research and well…. the science. Again I ask (i feel you are ignoring my comments), show me the research presented by the ID crowd or a creationist that overturns currently accepted evolutionary specific research.

    Tell me what thing we know now used to be something science said but was overturned by Religion.

  486. #486 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    I see Kevin is still concerned about the cracker. Here’s a task for you Kevin. There were 30,000+ posts during and after Crackergate about those freaking bits of ground grain. Read them all, as some of us did at the time, and then come back to us and show us how your argument hasn’t been gone over hundreds of times already. With the same result. Your concern is misplaced.

  487. #487 Rudy
    January 7, 2009

    Geez, 30,000 posts?? God, no wonder people are tired of this.

    Kevin, despite the exasperating habit of Phara… uh, people here, to say that they don’t have to answer you because You’re Wrong and Old Threads Prove It, have mercy on them and drop the cracker thing.

    At least for a while. I have a feeling it will come up again.

  488. #488 Nerd of Redhead
    January 7, 2009

    I have a feeling it will come up again.

    Truer words were never spoken. Sigh.

  489. #489 Steve_C
    January 7, 2009

    Yeah Rudy. You missed some crazy Catholics.

  490. #490 SC, OM
    January 7, 2009

    For anyone new, not to be missed – Owlmirror’s LOLCATIFIED condensed crackergate drama:

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2008/07/fyi.php#comment-980385

  491. #491 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    January 7, 2009

    Kevin, despite the exasperating habit of Phara… uh, people here, to say that they don’t have to answer you because You’re Wrong and Old Threads Prove It, have mercy on them and drop the cracker thing.

    Other than crackergate I’m not sure I’ve witnessed this “exasperating habit” minus a few examples.

    Some deserving examples sure, but an exasperating habit? nah.

  492. #492 Kevin Camp
    January 7, 2009

    Kel: I don’t push my religion on anyone. I would, however, like a little bit of mutual respect between those with differing beliefs. And yes, I know it was acquired under false pretenses. It doesn’t matter that the person who took it cherished it at the time. That was not part of the deal when they received it. Let’s say you invited a friend over. When he got there, you invited him to help himself to a few beers. So he grabs a six pack out of the cooler and immediately leaves, taking it with him to a party at someone elses house. What would your impression of him be?

    As for the giving up eating beef. No I wouldn’t. But I wouldn’t take a cow from a Hindu temple, slaughter it and eat it. I wouldn’t demand beef in a primarily Hindu city or invite a friend over who was Hindu and serve a nice rare steak to them.

  493. #493 Kel
    January 7, 2009

    What would your impression of him be?

    “Oi mate, I said a few!”

    As for the giving up eating beef. No I wouldn’t. But I wouldn’t take a cow from a Hindu temple, slaughter it and eat it.

    Way to miss the point. Cows in general are regarded as sacred animals by Hindus, no matter where you get it from it’s still equally a crime. The point is that it’s impossible for one person to adhere to religions of others.

    Respect is fine, but what happened with the events that led up to the cracker was not respect. The cracker became more important than life itself, and we can’t have that in our society. Catholics have no right to demand that the cracker be treated with respect any more than Hindu’s have the right to demand that a cow be the same.

    Basically, no matter how indignant you are, there’s no ground that one religion should be able to dictate behaviour of people not in that religion beyond what is not acceptable in the greater society. It’s time to let this go, Jesus got nailed and there isn’t a goddamn thing you can do about it. Whining about how wrong it was won’t change the fact that it was thrown in the trash alongside a copy of the Koran (which some very tolerant Catholics sent to PZ in order for him to desecrate) and a copy of The God Delusion.

  494. #494 Sondra
    January 7, 2009

    I think this one is the worst…BONUS INSTANCE: Senator Grassley’s Abuse of Power

    US Senator Grassley, a member of the powerful Senate Finance Committee, has demanded the financial records of a number of very prominent conservative, evangelical broadcast ministries. The demand was based on Grassley’s concern that these ministries are not spending their contributions properly. Grassley has admitted his concerns were in part driven by media accounts.

    Apparently they are in favor of the “prosperity ministers” who steal millions of dollars from their donors and buy enormous mansions, fleets of airplanes for themselves and put their entire extended families on the the payroll.

    Shame on Grassley for getting between these good christians and their dollars.

  495. #495 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    Kevin Camp wrote:

    Let’s say you invited a friend over. When he got there, you invited him to help himself to a few beers. So he grabs a six pack out of the cooler and immediately leaves, taking it with him to a party at someone elses house. What would your impression of him be?

    Now, here you’re actually getting close to an analogy that works. Bravo.

    So, we go with that analogy. What would you do about that person? Would you just not invite them to another party? Does that sound fair to you?

    Hold on, ’cause this is going to blow you away: it does to us, too.

    That’s all we ever wanted for Webster Cook – to not be invited back to the Catholic Church, ever again. Of course the Church has that right – it’s their building and ceremony and they can do what they want. He broke their rules. If they had wanted to ban him from attending, none of us would have given half a crap.

    But they didn’t do that, did they? They assaulted him, attempted to ruin his college career, and gave his name to the idiot media to run with it like the dispensers of low-intellectual-calorie garbage that they are. The Catholic League, a more low-rent bunch of attention seekers the world has never seen, decided it’d be worth a few column inches for them, so they jumped on board as well.

    Religion is given special privileges yet again. Media circus pitches its tent in town; Webster Cook demonised for a ridiculous, minor, victimless non-crime.

    That’s why PZ did what he did. That’s why we supported him. Because they over-reacted, and attempted to punish Webster Cook well beyond that which would be a reasonable reaction to the offence.

    Does it make any more sense to you now?

  496. #496 Twin-Skies
    January 8, 2009

    @ Kel #466

    Either a troll or a very well-designed Poe

  497. #497 J. A. Baker
    January 8, 2009

    My original post on the subject effectively calls the CADC a bunch of theocratic terrorists, and yet that is not somehow more “defamatory” than a politician whose only crime is subscribing to a theology to the left of Torquemada?!

    Now I am depressed.

  498. #498 SEF
    January 8, 2009

    If they had wanted to ban him from attending

    As mentioned before (way, way before!), the most telling part about the whole incident was that the only proper thing for the church to do was the one thing it didn’t do – ban or excommunicate him. They did just about every improper thing they could think of and hope to get away with against him (and, disgustingly, too many supposedly independent authorities let them), but not the one thing which was perfectly within their right to do.

    And that’s because the Catholic church is (a) evil and (b) desperate for members. They can’t bear to lose anyone whom they can pretend counts as a member. They repeatedly lie about owning people who never joined in their own right or who subsequently left. Its deceitfulness is probably only matched by that of the Mormons (who pretend they’ve “converted” people long after death).

  499. #499 Kevin Camp
    January 8, 2009

    Some of the details you guys were mentioning I didn’t see in the first article I read about the incident in Florida, so I looked some more. All I can say is : ROFLMAO.

    Man, the hypocrisy is so thick you can taste it. You guys say the church overreacted and that I was trying to find fault where there was none. Then you say things like he was attacked and threatened by people who value a symbol over human life. Lol, the vicious attack was the priest trying to take it back from him after he broke the rules of the establishment he was in. And the threats weren’t threats to harm him, they were threats to steal it back if he didn’t return it.

    Reminds me of the scene from the Princess Bride: “You are trying to kidnap what I’ve rightfully stolen.”

  500. #500 scottb
    January 8, 2009

    Kevin,

    Go back and read it again (and again if you have to) because you missed the death threats and actual attempts to have him expelled from school.

  501. #501 Kevin Camp
    January 8, 2009

    Went and reread several articles. Still don’t see a reference to a death threat. Could you kindly post a link to one?

  502. #502 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,378081,00.html

    learn to use google. that took 10 seconds.

  503. #503 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    Why is it that those who say the universe needs a cause in order to exist, but the cause they posit for the universe doesn’t need a cause?

    It’s called special pleading and is a logical fallacy.

    No your mistake is a category error. The argument really goes that contingent entities need a cause and we have good reason to believe the universe is a contingent entity

  504. #504 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @Crypticlife

    you really need to answer my two-MONTH old comment on your blog answering your “counter-challenge” where I hypothesize Jesus’ twin brother as an explanation for the alleged “resurrection”. I dashed off the response in only a few minutes and had forgotten I’d made it.
    1) You have provided no evidence for the existece of this identical twin
    2)James,Jesus’ brother the skeptic was one of the witnesses to the appearances. He would have been aware of Jesus’ twin brother.
    3)Is explanatorily insufficient to explain the empty tomb.

  505. #505 phantomreader42
    January 8, 2009

    scottb:

    Kevin, Go back and read it again (and again if you have to) because you missed the death threats and actual attempts to have him expelled from school.

    I suspect Kevin is fully aware of the death threats made by his cult. He’s just another Liar For Jesus?.

  506. #506 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @Owlmirror

    God does not communicate directly. Thus, even if God exists, God has one or more of the defects listed above… and I think that I am justified in saying that a defective being, even if it were indeed real, is not what I would call God.

    How are you sure God is not communicating directly and you are just the defective one who cant hear him?

  507. #507 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    How are you sure God is not communicating directly and you are just the defective one who cant hear him?

    Because god doesn’t exist. For people to hear him, he must interact with the real world and traces of existence would be seen. There are none. That is why hearing god is a sign of mental illness.

  508. #508 Kevin Camp
    January 8, 2009

    Steve: I google “florida student eucharist” and read through the first half dozen or so hits. I checked out the link but the video is blocked at work. I will check it out when I get home. Despite the fact that Fox news is a bastion of upstanding journalism, I would like to see the video myself.

  509. #509 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    Why don’t you know that Vishnu communicates with everyone and you’re missing the messages because you pray to the wrong god?

    Facilis. You create your own self-defeating arguments. It’s funny.

  510. #510 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    Google this.

    Wafer Student Death Threats

  511. #511 KnockGoats
    January 8, 2009

    The argument really goes that contingent entities need a cause and we have good reason to believe the universe is a contingent entity – Facilis

    What do you mean by “a contingent entity”, why do they need causes, and why isn’t God one?

  512. #512 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @Wowbagger

    Atheism is purely the absence of belief in gods.

    Epic fail.

    I suggest you familiarize yourself with the definition from the Routledge encyclopedia of philosophy

    Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy- “Atheism is the position that affirms the nonexistence of God. It proposes positive disbelief rather than mere suspension of belief.”.

    And stanford encyclopaedia of hilosophy

    ‘Atheism’ means the negation of theism, the denial of the existence of God

    Those are more apt

  513. #513 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Steve_C

    Facilis. You create your own self-defeating arguments. It’s funny.

    A half witted godbot is nothing but pure entertainment. Their hopes of anyone doing anything other than laughing due to their inconsistency is zero. And they need to put up the evidence for their imarginary god. I’m still waiting….

  514. #514 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis, atheists disbelieve in god because there is no evidence for god. You want us to consider god? Show us some physical evidence that can be confirmed by scientists, magicians, and professional debunkers as of divine origin. Otherwise, we see you as a woomeister.

  515. #515 KnockGoats
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis,
    Do you really think you have the right to tell atheists what “atheism” means, you arrogant tosser?

    Definitions differ.

    Wikipedia says:
    “Atheism, as an explicit position, can be either the affirmation of the nonexistence of gods,[1] or the rejection of theism.[2] It is also[3] defined more broadly as an absence of belief in deities, or nontheism.”

    There is, unfortunately, some disagreement about the definition of atheism. It is interesting to note that most of that disagreement comes from theists — atheists themselves tend to agree on what atheism means. Christians in particular dispute the definition used by atheists and insist that atheism means something very different.

    About.com says:
    “The broader, and more common, understanding of atheism among atheists is quite simply “not believing in any gods.” No claims or denials are made — an atheist is just a person who does not happen to be a theist. Sometimes this broader understanding is called “weak” or “implicit” atheism. Most good, complete dictionaries readily support this.”

  516. #516 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    How are you sure God is not communicating directly and you are just the defective one who cant hear him?

    That’s the stupidest, most disingenuous question ever.

    I know that God isn’t communicating directly with me because I’m not deaf, not blind, and not stupid — and if I were “defective” it would be God’s responsibility to figure out how to adjust for the defect and initiate communication.

    Human beings communicate in many ways. Besides speech and writing, we’ve invented sign language for the deaf, and Braille for the blind, and touch-signing for the deaf-blind. We’ve invented fire signals, drum signals, flag semaphores, Morse code, the Internet, and entire sciences revolving around various types of communication. We are practically defined by our ability to communicate.

    You believe in a God that can create universes. If this God existed, how hard would it be for him to make air vibrate in sound waves and just fucking talk?

  517. #517 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    Here’s a task for you Kevin. There were 30,000+ posts during and after Crackergate about those freaking bits of ground grain. Read them all, as some of us did at the time, and then come back to us and show us how your argument hasn’t been gone over hundreds of times already

    Oh, if you are going to compare the cracker to a book written on the skin of a deceased loved one someone already made that analogy.

  518. #518 WRMartin
    January 8, 2009

    Danny M @367:

    Yet i just ask you to consider

    We did consider and saw that there is nothing. Next.

    To me, one can not consider a creator without considering no creator. And one can not consider the non existence of a creator without considering the existence of one.

    Good for you. When you considered a creator what did you see? When you considered no creator what did you see?
    We (and many others) considered a creator and saw nothing. When we consider no creator everything makes sense.
    Your problem, in my opinion, is that you actually cannot consider anything non-Christian much less a world without a god-like creator.

    Besides, why must this magical creator dude be your version of a Christian god? Why can’t the magical universe and all that’s in it be created by a woman or a wombat? A 10-story tall wombat with laser eyes and razor sharp claws. I want me a 100′ tall wombat god. People can still bow down to its all-powerful village smoting abilities and my wombat god can talk too so it can use its laser eyes to set bushes on fire and then talk parents into killing their sons. Fully interchangeable with your Christian god and my god can kill yours. So there.

    Here’s a simple test (compliments of my mom – Hi mom!):
    Spit in one hand and pray into the other. Then let us know which one filled up first.

    @451:

    A thousand scientist saying something that is contradictory to what 500 scientist say does not make the thousand correct. Science is not a democracy.

    Yes, but 500 scientists without any peer-reviewed research in the subject at hand versus 1,000 real scientists named Steve or variations on the name such as Stephen, Stephan, etc. makes the 500 folks calling themselves scientists look a couple of magnitudes incorrect.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Steve
    But you are correct: science is not a democracy. Science isn’t a theocracy or a dictatorship either. So what was your point?

    @455:

    What the hell is a troll?

    You must so new to the Internet that we are amazed you made it here.

    In summary Danny M, you may be implying you are curious but your curiosity is being vastly overwhelmed by your attempts at witnessing to us. You may earn 0.01 martyr points from your nearest house of worship for your presence here but that’s about all. The onus is on you to learn something from outside your comfort zone and that means far, far, far away from the Discovery Institute, and Answers in Genesis, and even farther from Vox Day.

    @462:

    They say,
    “Hey, let’s look at darwinian evolution again.”
    And your response is,
    “No! No I will not look at the darwinian theory again to examine it, because there is no proof for creation.”
    That really does not make sense.

    Actually, it is much simpler than that. Evolutionary scientists don’t live by Darwin and Darwin alone. What Charles had to say got things started. He has, for the most part been superseded by … (dare I say it?) … science. Real, actual, science – using the scientific method, with falsifiable hypotheses, evidence, continuous improvement and refinement over the decades, and last but not least: predictions.

  519. #519 Rudy
    January 8, 2009

    I only meant my remarks on the Exasperating Habit to cover the crackers posts in this thread. I’m sorry for my gross (and ill-founded) generalization.

    Danny M, please consider that there are millions of Christians who accept evolution, including nearly all scientists that are Christian. People have worked long, long hours in the laboratory and the field to establish evolution beyond any doubt, scientifically speaking.

    I’m not arguing from authority here, but just want to reassure you that you don’t have to choose between evolution and your religious beliefs (whatever those are).

  520. #520 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @KnockGoats
    I go quote notable philosophical resources as to the definition of “atheism”, and you quote sites like wikipedia.
    I’ve got nothing to say.

  521. #521 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    I’ve got nothing to say.

    Now you finally get it.

    And you keep saying it over and over like the energizer bunny.

  522. #522 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    Good. Maybe you’ll stop babbling Facilis.

  523. #523 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @ Redhead,
    OKbut before I present evidence, I’ve seen from your other posts that you believe in logic and rationality. I assume you would be using some kind of absolute standard of logic to assess my responses. This standard must be objective(independent of human minds and opinions), or else I could end the debate by saying my subjective opinion of rationality is different.This standard must be universal or else it would not necessarily apply to my arguments.
    My question is, how do you account for these laws of logic within your worldview?

  524. #524 phantomreader42
    January 8, 2009

    facilis the brainless godbot @ #505:

    How are you sure God is not communicating directly and you are just the defective one who cant hear him?

    If your imaginary god (who you claim is all-powerful and created me) knows I am unable to hear him, and chooses not to correct this defect, then he obviously is not at all interested in actually communicating with me. If your imaginary god is not interested in communicating with me, I see no reason to listen for a message from a being I have no evidence of which he has no intent of delivering.

    By the way, Facilis, how can YOU be sure Anubis, Bokonon, Coyote, Dionysius, Elvis Presley, The Flying Spaghetti Monster, Ganesh, Hera, Isis, John Frum, Kali, Loki, Marduk, Nerull, Odin, Poseidon, Quetzalcoatl, Ra, Sun Myung Moon, Tiamat, Urd, Vishnu, Wee Jas, Xemnas, Yu Yevon, and Zeus are not communicating directly and YOU are just the defective one who can’t hear them?

  525. #525 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis,

    I do think there is a fair bit of evidence. However Redhead is being overly anal about limiting what kind of evidence I can produce.

    Again, what’s the evidence? A universe with an intervening all-powerful being should look very different than one that doesn’t have such a being.

  526. #526 CJO
    January 8, 2009

    This standard must be objective(independent of human minds and opinions)

    What stupid sophistry. “Sure, let’s talk about the existence of god. After you accept the existence of god.”

  527. #527 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis, your not producing evidence tells me you know how weak your evidence is if examined by skeptical scientists, magicians, and professional debunkers. Your quibbling about logic says you really have nothing but a philosophical argument, which is a total fail. So why don’t you just go away. Nobody is impressed with your evasions and idiotic questions.

  528. #528 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis, your not producing evidence tells me you know how weak your evidence is if examined by skeptical scientists, magicians, and professional debunkers.

    But all these people would have to use a standard of logic and rationality to evaluate my evidence anyway so what’s the point?

  529. #529 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis, you have true physical evidence that can be confirmed, then the standard of logic used doesn’t matter. But if you have special pleading, like the god of gaps, it does. Here’s the thing. If you are honest, present your evidence and take the good and bad that comes from it. Otherwise, I detect dishonesty on your part.

  530. #530 WRMartin
    January 8, 2009

    OK Facilis we give up. Fine, your personal version of the Christian god created everything.
    We still don’t care. Now will you go away?

  531. #531 CJO
    January 8, 2009

    But all these people would have to use a standard of logic and rationality to evaluate my evidence anyway so what’s the point?

    You’re whining and making excuses instead of making an argument.

  532. #532 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis. What evidence?

  533. #533 SC, OM
    January 8, 2009

    Fussilis,

    If you published a book, would you require people to meet certain requirements before allowing them to buy it, read it, or check it out of the library? Present the fucking evidence, already.

  534. #534 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    But Redhead, my evidence for the existence of God is he existence of logic.God’s nature is perfectly rational,immaterial, universal, objective and absolute and is the necessary pre-condition of the existence of this rational,immaterial, universal, objective and absolute standard of logic and rationality you and I appeal to in following God’s command to reason(Isaiah 1:18 ). The very fact that all of us here are sitting here trying to be logical and rational proves the existence of God, Redhead.

  535. #535 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 8, 2009

    Logic exist, therefore god!

    Damn, I never needed a deity to crank out a truth table.

  536. #536 KnockGoats
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis@519,

    I know you have nothing to say, but I have. Since your sources do not correspond to the way the word “atheism” is actually used, they’re wrong (or at least incomplete), however “notable” you may think they are: the meaning of words is determined by their use.

    My disbelief in gods in general is the same as my disbelief in leprachauns: no reason whatsoever to believe they exist, but the possibility cannot be ruled out. The God of doctrinally orthodox Christianity, on the other hand, is a logical impossibility, so I know it doesn’t exist. I couldn’t give a shit whether you think that makes me an atheist or not.

    Now, how about answering my #510? Notice that I’m not trying to impose definitions on you, I’m asking you to elucidate your beliefs and claims. That’s the way to pursue a substantive argument, but then you’re not interested in that, are you?

  537. #537 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    facilis,

    Whenever I see a “proof” of God I think replace ‘God’ with ‘pantheon of Greek gods” and see if it makes sense.

    But Redhead, my evidence for the existence of the pantheon of Greek gods is he existence of logic. The Greek gods’ nature is perfectly rational,immaterial, universal, objective and absolute and is the necessary pre-condition of the existence of this rational,immaterial, universal, objective and absolute standard of logic and rationality you and I appeal to in following Greek gods’ command to reason(Works and Days). The very fact that all of us here are sitting here trying to be logical and rational proves the existence of the Greek gods, Redhead.

  538. #538 KnockGoats
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis@533,
    You have not even attempted to present an argument that the existence of logic (actually, of course, there are many logics, some of which are incompatible with each other) proves the existence of God. You have simply asserted that it does. That will not do. Indeed since you think your “proof” is valid, and I think that it is not, by your own lights your premise that there is a universally agreed standard of logic and rationality is false.

  539. #539 CJO
    January 8, 2009

    Whenever I see a supposed proof for any gods, I look for the logical fallacy. In this case, looking is hardly required. When your conclusion is one of your premises, Facilis, you’re begging the question.

    Even if you weren’t, unexamined, obvious facts about the world are not evidence, for any position. The simple existence of logic and humans’ ability to reason “proves” nothing other than that humans are (sometimes) capable of reason. Now, if you were remotely interested in deriving some actual evidence from the existence of human rationality (as if), then we could get into neuroscience and cognitive psychology and linguistics and talk about specifics. I realize, of course, that actually considering the empirical evidence would be directly opposed to your little apologetics project here, but I just wanted to point out how far you are from any intellectually honest engagement with even the concept of a logical argument based on evidence, much less the thing itself.

  540. #540 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    God’s nature is perfectly rational,immaterial, universal, objective and absolute

    Fallacious reasoning! Assumes facts not in evidence.

    and [God's nature] is the necessary pre-condition of the existence of this rational,immaterial, universal, objective and absolute standard of logic and rationality

    Fallacious reasoning! Assumes facts not in evidence.

    Your irrational and false arguments are self-refuting.

    Watch out! There are bears coming for you! Big scary child-murdering bears!

    you and I appeal to in following God’s command to reason(Isaiah 1:18 ).

    Isaiah 1:18 : Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

    Sorry, but “Sin” is not reason; neither is sin “reversing” itself.

    The very fact that all of us here are sitting here trying to be logical and rational proves the existence of God.

    Actually, God hates rationality and loves stupidity.

    1 Corinthians 1:19-23 : For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
    Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?
    For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
    For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:
    But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness

  541. #541 facilis
    January 8, 2009

    Whenever I see a “proof” of God I think replace ‘God’ with ‘pantheon of Greek gods” and see if it makes sense.

    The Greek Gods aren’t immaterial or unchanging, like God (and logic) are.

  542. #542 facilis
    January 8, 2009

    Actually, God hates rationality and loves stupidity.

    1 Corinthians 1:19-23 : For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
    Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?

    God here is talking about the foolish secularist “reason” that refuses to acknowlege God as the source of rationality. God has indeed revealed to us how foolish it is in his word. It is also proven by all the atheists here unable to account for the invariant, objective ,universal laws of logic in their worldview.

  543. #543 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis, since your god exists only between your ears, he changes constantly with your mood. If god only exists using logic, he is a philosophical contruct with no meaning to the real world. Only physical evidence shows proof for a real world god. What a maroon.

  544. #544 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    The Greek Gods aren’t immaterial or unchanging, like God (and logic) are.

    A burning bush is immaterial? And how exactly did the Romans manage to nail an immaterial thing to a cross?

  545. #545 CJO
    January 8, 2009

    It is also proven by all the atheists here unable to account for the invariant, objective ,universal laws of logic in their worldview.

    We’re “unable to account for” them because no “laws of logic” exist that have those attributes. And there’s nothing “immaterial” about logic, either. It’s a description of what goes on in (some of) our material brains.

  546. #546 Patricia, OM
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis you abysmal idiot. The fact that we are all sitting here proves nothing more than our parents at some point had sex.

  547. #547 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    In response to the post about AA.
    You said AA and programs like it have a bad success rate. I will explain why I believe this is unfair.
    1. If there is a drug that will cure a certain illness 100 percent of the time for everyone who takes it as prescribed, but only 20 percent of the people who are prescribed this perfect medicine take it as directed, then on paper it would have an 80 percent failure rate.
    2. The program of AA is a hard thing for many people to go through. It requires someone to face their ‘demons’. It requires one to be rid of resentment. It requires one to have willingness. In other words, AA is not about going to meetings. I would say that 100 percent of the people who take AA as prescribed recover 100 percent of the time. This is why I think the earlier post was an unfair judgment.

  548. #548 facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @KnockGoats

    You have not even attempted to present an argument that the existence of logic actually, of course, there are many logics, some of which are incompatible with each other) proves the existence of God.

    Its proven by the impossibility of the contrary. Try to account for the laws of logic apart from God and I will show you.

    You have simply asserted that it does. That will not do. Indeed since you think your “proof” is valid, and I think that it is not, by your own lights your premise that there is a universally agreed standard of logic and rationality is false.

    Hmm no I said there is a universal standard of logic. Some people refuse to acknowlege it so they can suppress the truth and deny God as the true foundation of reason.

  549. #549 Patricia, OM
    January 8, 2009

    facilis, get up now. Go take your meds.

  550. #550 Nered of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis the ballless, you keep trying to get us to commit something to you so you can attempt to control the argument. Ain’t going to happen. Why don’t you just put your evidence out there like a man with balls, and see what happens.

    I know what will happen. Laughter and derision, because you have nothing that we haven’t seen last week, last month, or last year. Failed then. Will fail again.

  551. #551 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    Wow. How can something so simple be turned upside down.

    Either god exists or it doesn’t. If it does, there’s evidence.

    Creating some sort of philosophical paradoxical catch-22 reasoning is not evidence.

    Saying “Logic wouldn’t exist without a god. Logic exists and therefore god exists.”

    Is FUCKING RETARDED.

  552. #552 CJO
    January 8, 2009

    Try to account for the laws of logic apart from God and I will show you.

    We can’t account for something when we don’t even know what it is. Tell you what, why don’t you lay out these mysterious laws, and then we can talk about it. As it stands, you’re basically asking for someone to account for an aspect of god, without god. Surely you can see that this kind of sophistry is less than impressive.

  553. #553 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @redhead.
    I did put forth my evidence. My evidence was that God was the necessary pre-condition for the invariant,universal, immaterial and objective laws of logic, with the impossibility of the contrary. You guys have proven it by your inability to account for logic apart from God.

  554. #554 phantomreader42
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis, explain how your idiotic claim that the existence of logic proves the existence of your imaginary god fails to work equally well for The Invisible Pink Unicorn, or the Flying Spaghetti Monster, or Blurdiggledyflorp, or admit that your argument is a load of shit. Note that your previous dodge that the Greek gods “aren’t immaterial or unchanging” won’t work because all of MY examples ARE immaterial and unchanging, because I said so. :P

  555. #555 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    Some people here have used logic such as this. “If the universe can be explained without a God, then there is no God.” or, “You can not prove the existence of God because there is no physical proof. If He existed, then there would be evidence of His presence.”. I want to explain why this logic does not make sense to me.
    1. There are a number of different ways to do certain things. I like to golf, and did golf the other week. So, one could come up with any number of posssible ways the game came out. I could have scored 100, or 75, or 80. Not only that, but I could have scored 100 in a variety of different ways. But in the end, only one way happened.
    Just because one could explain how I could have finished with a score of 72, and write out how it could have happened hole by hole, that does not mean it happened like that. My example may be flawed, but if we are in a discussion then work with me, not against me.

    2. More importantly however, is this. The logic assumes that we know all about the universe. a. I suggest that there are questions for which we do not have answers to. I say that we do not know yet whether He has “left a mark”. b. Also, there are questions that we do not even know exist, so right now they are impossible to even try and answer.
    ——————————————————-
    3. My logic– “If there are questions about the universe that we do not have answers to, and if we do not even know all the questions about the universe that need to be answered, then we do not yet know if the universe can exist without a Creator.”

  556. #556 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis, do you honestly think that humans are the only species with the capacity to use logic? How do you account for problem solving in animals?

  557. #557 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

    Logic exists. There is no evidence of any god. Therefore god does not exist. Logic wins.

  558. #558 Kel
    January 8, 2009
  559. #559 facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @CJO
    OK let me lay it out for you.Humans reason. In order to reason they use laws of logic. These laws of logic are universal (apply to everyone), objective (not dependent on human opinion or conventions), immaterial (not made of matter) and invariant( do not change). God is universal,objective,immaterial and invariant and he is the necessary pre-condition for these laws of logic to exist. This is proven by the impossibility of the contrary. Try to account for the laws of logic apart from God and i will show you.

  560. #560 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis, total fail. No physical evidence. Hahahahahahahah. What an idiot. hahahahahahah

  561. #561 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy- “Atheism is the position that affirms the nonexistence of God. It proposes positive disbelief rather than mere suspension of belief.”.

    Yes, but so what? If you want to argue on semantics about absence of belief over disbelief, go ahead. But in effect it says a similar tale. Atheism is the stance that God doesn’t exist expressed in one way or another. There’s still no major or minor tenets, no philosophy, no moral guide, it’s a stance on the supernatural. And that is what we were trying to explain to Brute, rather than his science = atheism.

  562. #562 phantomreader42
    January 8, 2009

    Danny, here’s my logic:

    As there is not the slightest speck of evidence of any god, there is no reason whatsoever to believe in any god.

    As, to date, everyone who has claimed to have evidence for a god has been delusional or lying, there is still no reason whatsoever to believe in any god.

    You have a problem with that, show some damn evidence of your imaginary friend, or shut up.

  563. #563 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    God is logic. Oh for fuck’s sake.

  564. #564 CJO
    January 8, 2009

    In order to reason they use laws of logic.

    Yes, I understand that this is the linchpin of your argument, such as it is. But I dispute the claim, and it’s an as yet unargued assertion. So, you’ll either have to leave it out of your premises or you’ll have to offer some justification for taking it as given.

  565. #565 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    My logic regarding logic.

    We have evolved a brain that is capable of problem solving, we have also evolved a brain that is capable of speech, creating abstract concepts and storing memories. From these we have developed the capacity to use abstract concepts such as numbers in order to represent the world. The tools we have to do logic can be accounted for in the evolution of man, there’s no need to posit a god in order to explain our mental function. That would be unnecessary and superflous.

  566. #566 Alyson
    January 8, 2009

    The only system of logic that is the same in every culture is math. There is no “intelligent agent” required to account for the existence of math; it simply exists.

  567. #567 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    DannyM, your fail as big as Facilis the lying idiot. God exists only between your ears. Therefore nobody else can see god the way you do. I certainly don’t. While I can respect you believing if you kept it to yourself, I can’t respect you telling me I must believe too. That is your failing.

    Or, you can show some physical evidence for your imaginary god that will pass muster with scientists, magicians, and professional debunkers as being of divine origin. Only that will save your argument as far as I am concerned.

  568. #568 CJO
    January 8, 2009

    For clarity, and since Facilis is obviously hung up on this “laws of logic” business, I will offer the counter-claim in plain language.

    The supposed laws you’re talking about are descriptive, that is they depend on there being tinking beings with the capacity for logical reasoning. The “laws” are derived from the activity, not vice versa; they’re a formal description of it, and the activity could proceed just fine (and presumably once did) if the “laws” had never been formalized.

  569. #569 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    Now I want to make a disclaimer before continuing. I do not believe or know that this is a mark of God. Nor do I claim anyone knows. I do believe that, assuming the existence of a Creator, His mark would be left somehow. And we have to assume that He is not 100 percent against us finding it, or this discussion is pointless.
    ———————————————————
    It was on the history, or geo channel, something like that. It was a show about dark matter, and dark energy. That is what we call it, I mean it needs a name so we can talk about it. They do not know much about it, they just know it has to be there. You people probably know more about this subject than I do.
    According to my beliefs, God is holding all things together by the power of His Word. I believe He is the one holding the universe together. Now, when we talk about God leaving His mark, assuming His existence, it would all be His mark… but that’s sunday school BS. We are talking about something more. If He is holding the universe together, I could see how the evidence of it could look like dark matter, or dark energy.
    ———————————————————
    The main point to be taken from this is this. If dark matter and dark energy is not it, then I believe it would be something like that that we should be looking for.
    I do believe there is evidence for God, there has to be. People need to stop dodging the questions about evidence, and call the scientist up and demand they look for it. I do NOT agreee that the existence of a Creator can not be proven, or have evidence found in its behalf.
    If you are scared that you do not know of any physical evidence for a Creator, then go hide under your covers somewhere. I for one have the balls. Scientist, start looking with an open mind. If you keep going on under the assumption that there is no way to prove the existence of a Creator, or that there can be no physical evidence, then of course you will never find it.
    I dodge no question. I say the search should be on, and you have a choice to believe what you want to believe. But so do I and I believe I have made the right decision.

  570. #570 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    danny m,

    Some people here have used logic such as this. “If the universe can be explained without a God, then there is no God.” or, “You can not prove the existence of God because there is no physical proof. If He existed, then there would be evidence of His presence.”

    Nobody has made these arguments. The arguments are

    (1) If the universe can be explained without a God then there is no good reason to believe in God, anymore than there is an invisible flying Spaghetti monster.

    (2) A God REGULARLY INTERVENING IN HUMAN AFFAIRS would leave physical evidence of his/her/its presence. Why has faciliis yet to show us this physical evidence? Now if you believe in some sort of deistic God that created the universe and has done zilch since than this doesn’t apply.

    “If there are questions about the universe that we do not have answers to, and if we do not even know all the questions about the universe that need to be answered, then we do not yet know if the universe can exist without a Creator pantheon of Greek gods.”

    See how that makes just as much sense?

  571. #571 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    The Greek Gods aren’t immaterial or unchanging, like God (and logic) are.

    Facilis has as much understanding of logic as he has evidence for the existence of a god. It’s a good thing logic has never changed at all in its journey from Aristotelian essentialism to Boolean extensionalism, by way of Kant

  572. #572 facilis
    January 8, 2009

    There is no “intelligent agent” required to account for the existence of math; it simply exists.

    I do not need to account for the existence of God. he simply exists. Ha Ha!!!
    How do you like your “it simply exists” argument now? It seems rather stupid doesn’t it.

  573. #573 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    Logic existed before the concept of logic ever did.

  574. #574 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    But Facilis doesn’t exactly understand logic.

    This would be entertaining if it weren’t so painful.

  575. #575 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    phantomreader42– apparently I am not talking to you then. If you decide to talk to me with respect, as other people on this site have done, and I am doing, then we can have a discussion.

    Nerd of Redhead– appearently we have a misunderstanding. I am having a logical discussion to the best of my ability. I am trying to make it understandable with the whole– if,then of logic thing. You would not respect me if I stood by and let you drive over a busted up bridge either… I do not think you understand me and I don’t guess I blame you.
    ———————————————————-
    I would like someone to respectfully critique my logic that I posted– 3. My logic– “If there are questions about the universe that we do not have answers to, and if we do not even know all the questions about the universe that need to be answered, then we do not yet know if the universe can exist without a Creator.” with this addition, “nor do we yet know if there is or is not any physical evidence.”.

  576. #576 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    I do believe there is evidence for God, there has to be. People need to stop dodging the questions about evidence, and call the scientist up and demand they look for it. I do NOT agreee that the existence of a Creator can not be proven, or have evidence found in its behalf.

    There is no evidence for god. No need for there to be except in your mind. We aren’t dodging your question, but rather you are dodging the burden of proof. You are trying to put it upon us to prove a negative, rather than upon you to prove a positive. The burden of proof is upon you to demonstrate positive physical evidence for god. Now you go and find the evidence and report back. Welcome to science.

  577. #577 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    facilis,

    Do you agree that a universe with a God regularly intervening in human affairs would look very different than a universe without such a being?

    If yes, then wouldn’t there be physical evidence of that being intervening?

  578. #578 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    God here is talking about the foolish secularist “reason” that refuses to acknowlege God as the source of rationality.

    Except that it isn’t God talking. It’s Paul of Tarsus, and Isaiah.

    Who the hell are these mere mortals to say that secularist reason is foolish? Who are you to do so?

    Why does God need these people long dead, and morons like you living now, to say stupid and logically incoherent things about him? If God is real, let him speak for himself, right now.

    God has indeed revealed to us how foolish it is in his word.

    He indeed revealed how foolish his word is. Don’t forget what Paul is talking about: Christ crucified as the source of salvation. He states that it is indeed foolish, and that God was well pleased to do something so foolish.

    It is also proven by all the atheists here unable to account for the invariant, objective ,universal laws of logic in their worldview.

    If the laws if logic are God, then God is not the one spoken on in Christian bible, because that God hates the laws of logic.

  579. #579 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    I posted the last one before I saw your reply : Feynmaniac
    thanks for the reply

  580. #580 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    Nerd of Redhead: Apparently there is still a misunderstanding. I was not talking to atheist when I wrote about dodging the question of evidence. It is easy to assume that I suppose.

  581. #581 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    I do not need to account for the existence of God. he simply exists. Ha Ha!!! How do you like your “it simply exists” argument now? It seems rather stupid doesn’t it.

    Of course it’s stupid. If God “simply exists” as a person, then, like all people, God can and should speak for himself.

    If God does not exist as a person, then we have nothing to disagree over.

  582. #582 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    Facilis,

    I’m enjoying watching you dance. An epic flail if you will…

    Shorter facilis: ‘My god exists because I say so, and the same logic can’t apply to any other posited gods because I say it can’t.’

    Yeah, that’s going to work.

  583. #583 phantomreader42
    January 8, 2009

    Dannym @ #568:

    I do believe there is evidence for God, there has to be.

    Then where is it? Go find it and show it to us.

    danny orders everyone but himself to stop dodging questions:

    People need to stop dodging the questions about evidence, and call the scientist up and demand they look for it.

    No, YOU quit dodging the questions about evidence, and LOOK FOR IT YOURSELF! Don’t just sit on your ass and demand scientists do it for you, get to work!

    danny lies about his testicles:

    I for one have the balls. Scientist, start looking with an open mind.

    If you really had the balls, you’d be doing the search yourself instead of whining and ordering other people around. You think there’s evidence of your imaginary friend? Go find it. Don’t just sit on your ass. Do something. Grow some testables, come up with a hypothesis that actually has some relevance in the real world, and test it. And if all your searching doesn’t find the slightest speck of evidence for your imaginary friend (as all searching to date has not found any such evidence), admit it. Don’t make shit up.

    danny lies again:

    I dodge no question. I say the search should be on, and you have a choice to believe what you want to believe. But so do I and I believe I have made the right decision.

    No, on the contrary, you dodge ALL questions by demanding that other people do your work for you. YOU are the one claiming there’s a god. YOU are the one claiming there’s evidence of a god. So YOU are the one who needs to go find it. If you’re too lazy to do that, quit whining.

  584. #584 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    “If there are questions about the universe that we do not have answers to, and if we do not even know all the questions about the universe that need to be answered, then we do not yet know if the universe can exist without a Creator.” with this addition, “nor do we yet know if there is or is not any physical evidence.”.

    And what do you mean by “a Creator”? And intelligent being, or an unthinking cause?

    If “creator” means “an intelligent being”, I repeat my insistence that since all intelligent beings that we know of communicate, this intelligent being should communicate as well.

    If “creator” means “unthinking cause”, well, then that’s a question of cosmology, which is being hashed out by cosmologists.

  585. #585 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    Feynmaniac: (1) If the universe can be explained without a God then there is no good reason to believe in God, anymore than there is an invisible flying Spaghetti monster.

    1. I do not agree that we know yet that the universe can be explained without a God. Since we do not know the answers to all questions, or even know everything that needs to be asked. There could be questions that exist that have only one working answer– Creator.

    Feynmaniac: (2) ……if the universe can exist without a Creator pantheon of Greek gods.”
    See how that makes just as much sense?

    2. Please do not narrow this down to Christianity. Although I believe in Jesus, I am only talking about a Creator. In the future maybe we can discuss Jesus if you want to, but for now I would like to stick with Creator.

    Feynmanic: (3) (1) If the universe can be explained without a God then there is no good reason to believe in God, anymore than there is an invisible flying Spaghetti monster.

    3. I see a vast difference. a. First of all I am talking about searching for evidence, searching for a Creator. I am not even talking about believing or trusting in Him.
    b. Second of all we are yet to know if the universe can be explained without a God.
    c. Thirdly. Flying Spaghetti monster. The difference could be as great as the desire for one to look for ones parents, as opposed to looking for a fly in Florida. There is a big difference. Who cares about a Flying spaghetti monster. Can’t you see how people would be more concerned with one than the other.
    ————————————————————
    People please re-read my posts from today with a different mindset of me. I am not attacking any one for being an atheist. Maybe if you look at it with a different attitude about me, then you could be in a better position to critique my statements of logic. Like some of you have done, and thanks for that.

  586. #586 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    phantomreader42: PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do not write another FU(*&ng word in my direction. You willfully ignorant sutpid person who is only on this site to fight, so much so that he does not even take the time to see that I was challenging ‘believers’ to stop dodging questions. I have tried over and over and over and over again to explain that I have nothing against you, but guess what, i was wrong. I hope that you never write another word to me you piece of crap.

  587. #587 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    feynmaniac: (1)Do you agree that a universe with a God regularly intervening in human affairs would look very different than a universe without such a being? (2)If yes, then wouldn’t there be physical evidence of that being intervening?

    1. I agree that the assumption could reasonably be come by. But I can not say that.
    2. I believe so yes.

  588. #588 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    danny, I’m getting confused here (busy day at work). Are you, or are you not, saying that there is evidence for god out there, and it is up to scientists to find it for you?

    It might help if you used blockquotes for quoting people
    [blockquote]material to be quoted[/blockquote], except use the right and left arrows (shift comma and shift period)in place of the right and left brackets.

  589. #589 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    no, i agree with (1) also. my bad i misread it. i’m posting too much, i’ll stop for a bit and give others a chance. sorry for posting so much in a row.

  590. #590 WRMartin
    January 8, 2009

    Looks like we have found DannyM’s kryptonite: reality.
    Careful there Danny. Reality is all that confusing and obnoxious stuff going on around you while you try to justify your god(s).

    Danny, you’re a liar. You aren’t searching for truth. You are searching for Truth(tm). And you are witnessing here (and FAILING). You earn 0.001 martyr points for your presence here.

    P.S. The word is spelled “FUCKING” – it contains letters from the alphabet. Please use it correctly. Most of the rest of us are adults here. We can take it. You, on the other hand, appear to still be in diapers and using training wheels.

    PhantomReader42 has a thrid digit in his IQ that you don’t.

    Who cares about a Flying spaghetti monster GOD?

    There, fixed that for you. You’re welcome.

  591. #591 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    Danny M @#584:

    In the future maybe we can discuss Jesus if you want to, but for now I would like to stick with Creator.

    There is a term for belief that there is a Creator, but not the Creator of any religion; sometimes even a Creator that does nothing after creating. It’s called Deism.

    Is that what you want? To consider the Deist hypothesis?

    a. First of all I am talking about searching for evidence, searching for a Creator.

    In don’t think you understood Feynmaniac’s point: If it is not necessary to posit a Creator-as-a-person, we have no reason to believe that there is evidence.

    If you don’t think there is evidence found yet, what do you think could be evidence that might yet be found; if it were indeed found?

  592. #592 facilis
    January 8, 2009

    I’m enjoying watching you dance. An epic flail if you will…

    The only epic flail I see here si the inability of atheists to account for rationality and logic. Its so funny because people were earlier claiming to be logical and rational.

  593. #593 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    Thank you so much Nerd of Redhead.
    I am saying that, under the assumption of a Creator, then there would have to be evidence. Because I do believe He is involved. Am I saying that someone has found it, no. It is out there. I think it is important to look. And I can not even find my socks in the morning… so yes, it is up to the smart people to find it.

  594. #594 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    Owlmirror: Thank you.
    I wrote earlier today about evidence, and dark matter and energy. Post 568. but please don’t get caught up on the dark matter and energy thing too much.

  595. #595 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    Fallacious offers platonism? That’s it? The simpleton clearly knows fuckall about logic, wouldn’t recognize it if it bit him on the ass, yet he claims logic is an existence proof for his infinitely simple god, arrogantly claiming victory as he dishonestly scarpers from one unanswered question in one thread to another.

  596. #596 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    The only epic flail I see here si the inability of atheists to account for rationality and logic. Its so funny because people were earlier claiming to be logical and rational.

    And yet you still haven’t explained why logic and rationality can only exist if it was specifically Yahweh, the broader Judeo-Christian deity, who created the universe.

    How is this not explained by, say, Zeus creating the universe? That would make far more sense, considering the Greeks were far more concerned with the study of formal logic than the Isralites.

  597. #597 CJO
    January 8, 2009

    the inability of atheists to account for rationality and logic.

    That’s not what you’re seeing here. You’re equivocating between rationality and logic in and of themselves and your characterization of logic as immaterial, universal, and depending on transcendental laws for its existence. We’re not accounting for any of that, but then, you haven’t provided any justification for considering logic in this way, you’ve merely asserted that it is.

  598. #598 Matt Heath
    January 8, 2009

    The only epic flail I see here si the inability of atheists to account for rationality and logic. Its so funny because people were earlier claiming to be logical and rational.

    If by “account for” you mean “give an explanation of how these things came to exist”, then Dan Dennett’s all over it, from a purely naturalistic (and therefore atheistic, a-fairy-istic position and a-whatever-other-mythical-placeholder-istic) angle, tracking the historical development of such things.

    What I’ve never seen is a theistic explanation of how rationality or logic came about. It is claimed that a god with these properties along with consciousness and even emotion simply was. I would like an account of how such a thing came to be.

  599. #599 Steve_C
    January 8, 2009

    Why do we have to account for the concepts of logic and rationality? They’re concepts. Fine if you want to say God is a concept too. I agree.

    But that’s all god is.

  600. #600 WRMartin
    January 8, 2009

    DannyM @592:

    I am saying that, under the assumption of a Creator, then there would have to be evidence. Because I do believe He is involved. Am I saying that someone has found it, no. It is out there. I think it is important to look.

    How about this instead: We’ll go on about our lives (and science) using reality-based mechanisms. If perchance we bump into some god(s) or creator(s) we’ll publish a peer-reviewed paper and win a Nobel Prize and you can read about it in the newspaper or see it on the TV.
    Deal?
    If I win the Nobel, I’ll bring you along as my guest and give you half the money.
    Does that sweeten the deal?

  601. #601 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    Danny @593:

    I wrote earlier today about evidence, and dark matter and energy. Post 568. but please don’t get caught up on the dark matter and energy thing too much.

    Are you actually thinking that dark matter and/or energy might be God? (I am not sure if that is what you are saying)

    Cosmologists are positing these things in the same way that earlier scientists posited atoms, or subatomic particles, or the speed of light being constant: Something to account for the physical behavior of the universe, based on the evidence.

    Again, nothing found so far indicates that dark energy and/or matter, or anything else in the greater physical structure of the universe, is a person.

    What do you think might be found that would?

  602. #602 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    danny m,

    I do not agree that we know yet that the universe can be explained without a God. Since we do not know the answers to all questions, or even know everything that needs to be asked. There could be questions that exist that have only one working answer– Creator.

    When Laplace met Napoleon the emperor asked him ‘M. Laplace, they tell me you have written this large book on the system of the universe, and have never even mentioned its Creator.’ Laplace responded ‘Je n’avais pas besoin de cette hypothèse-là.’ (‘I had no need of that hypothesis.’). To this day we have yet to need that hypothesis.

    There could be a question that has only one working answer – an invisible Spaghetti monster. There’s no reason to believe that. Simply not being able to disprove things is NOT a strong argument. You could say that same thing about God, fairies, leprechauns, Aztec gods, etc. etc.

    Please do not narrow this down to Christianity. Although I believe in Jesus, I am only talking about a Creator. In the future maybe we can discuss Jesus if you want to, but for now I would like to stick with Creator.

    Where did I mention Jesus? All I mentioned was a God intervening in human affairs. This covers many religion – Christianity, Judaism, Islam, etc.
    The only time I can see I alluded to Jesus was in #543 and I was talking to facilis.

    First of all I am talking about searching for evidence, searching for a Creator. I am not even talking about believing or trusting in Him.

    People HAVE been searching for physical evidence for God for centuries. Discovering such a thing would be a theistic scientists’ wet dream. If there were indisputable physical evidence I think everyone here would change there mind. Yet this search has produced nothing.

    There is a big difference. Who cares about a Flying spaghetti monster. Can’t you see how people would be more concerned with one than the other.

    Yes, maybe people are more concerned about one over the other, but there is just as much reason to believe in the existence of one as the other.

  603. #603 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    I am saying that, under the assumption of a Creator, then there would have to be evidence. Because I do believe He is involved. Am I saying that someone has found it, no. It is out there. I think it is important to look. And I can not even find my socks in the morning… so yes, it is up to the smart people to find it.

    You are suggesting what Richard Dawkins is saying as well (and coming under much ire for doing so) that God is a testable entity in the universe. Where I see you missing the point is that scientists and non-scientists alike since the beginning of time have been searching for God.

    Removing God from the scientific process does two things:
    1. it protects science. It means that nowhere in the process can go the phrase “then a miracle occurs” and is just left at that. God is a non-answer, and to use God in such a manner is destroying the whole point of science.
    2. It protects God. By taking God away from the testable, it means that there doesn’t have to be God’s absence explained. “The lord works in mysterious ways” simply doesn’t cut it as an explanation, so in effect God can never be proven or disproven because any results can be rationalised away as God not wanting to be tested.

    Bringing God into the scientific realm makes God falsifiable, it also means that people have to be predictive about God – something that a theist cannot do. In historical science, surely we should see evidence for “miracles” such as a global flood or a sudden creation in the fossil record because the earth does preserve geological events. In that sense we can test at least the actions attributed to God – though any serious theologian these days would say that those stories in genesis or the events of exodus are allegorical. Much like many of the battles in Joshua; we’ve found the ruins of Ai for example and the archaeology didn’t match the biblical account.

    Doing that though only questions the validity of the bible as an accurate account of the world, and it’s been shown that the bible is not inerrant and indeed outright wrong on many events. The infallibility of His word is not evidence against Him, only that the bible isn’t enough to provide proof of God.

  604. #604 WRMartin
    January 8, 2009

    This is difficult to keep up without blowing away too many brain cells so on my way out I have these addenda for DannyM:
    In light of the current world economic situation there is a dire need for more funds and I think you should get cracking on changing lead into gold.
    The energy shortage is causing a bit of a kerfuffle too and I think you should get to work on those perpetual motion machines.
    My hair gets messed up when I fly my kite and I want a kite that I can fly into the wind and I need you to design me one. Spring will be here soon and I really need you to get started right away.

  605. #605 God
    January 8, 2009

    If God “simply exists” as a person, then, like all people, God can and should speak for himself.

    What could I possibly say that would convince you that I was speaking for Myself?

  606. #606 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    As for logic, we can account for logic through evolutionary measures, we can see the foundations required for logic in other creatures and our ability to do logic is completely explainable through natural processes. If the laws of logic were universal and given by Yahweh, why would Christian Europe have existed so long without the concept 0, and needed the Allah-worshippers to take the concept of 0 from the pantheists of India and import it into Europe? It seems like Brahman would be a better explanation for logic than Yahweh.

  607. #607 WRMartin
    January 8, 2009

    God @604:

    What could I possibly say that would convince you that I was speaking for Myself?

    Something along the lines of:
    I’m God and I approve of this message.
    in a large booming voice from the sky that can be heard by sane people. ;)

  608. #608 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    What could I possibly say that would convince you that I was speaking for Myself?

    Well, you might, for example, provide a list of predictions of gamma-ray bursts, synchronized to GMT, for a period of about a year.

    You might also provide a list of predictions of radioactive decay events in some particular radioisotope sample. Or several such lists, to several laboratories.

    Closer to people’s hearts, you might predict the lottery for all states in the US that have them, and/or all countries that have one, or the MD5SUM/SHA1SUM of same (if you don’t want to skew the economy too much).

    That wouldn’t demonstrate omniscience, which I still think is logically impossible, or logically impossible to demonstrate, but it would demonstrate knowledge greater than any human has or could have.

  609. #609 God
    January 8, 2009

    Uh……

    Without faith I am nothing?

    *poof*

  610. #610 Zarquon
    January 8, 2009

    What could I possibly say that would convince you that I was speaking for Myself?

    You have to ask?

  611. #611 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    The Templeton Foundation funded study into prayer was a pretty telling experiment.

  612. #612 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    Ok, I wasn’t wrong about I thought Danny said. Danny, science is a humanistic study. It is not a theological study. Science ignores god, and will continue to ignore god. Science will not find proof for god, that must come from theologians. Saying we should looks means nothing. Whatever is out there, science will find a natural explanation for it.

    Facilis is being a typical godbot, and saying we are not responding to his logic, or rather, his illogic. It is obvious to a casual observation that he never had any evidence except his belief, and an ego the size of a small house. You don’t convince people that way.

  613. #613 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    The only epic flail I see here si the inability of atheists to account for rationality and logic. Its so funny because people were earlier claiming to be logical and rational.

    One word: evolution. Why does this argument sound awfully like the argument for love, or for consciousness, or for life itself. Atheists can’t explain love, atheists can’t explain feelings, atheists can’t explain thoughts, atheists can’t explain consciousness, atheists can’t explain X.

    The logic seems to go that if atheists can’t explain it, then a mangod who died 2000 years ago must be the source.

  614. #614 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    What could I possibly say that would convince you that I was speaking for Myself?

    You have to ask?

    Occasionally, we get theists who either insist that even if God came down and manifested, we would not believe, or ask what would it take to convince us that God existed.

    I think I’ll point to my little list of (near)omniscience demonstrators as example criteria that I would find compelling.

    Of course, there’s also Kel’s water-into-vodka request, which to date has not happened. With the vodka (assuming it only happened once), we would only have Kel’s word that it had ever been water. I think my examples would be more general, and could theoretically shown to many, many people, or even to humanity at large.

    Of course, if God was willing to turn water into vodka at anyone’s request, that would be even more compelling than my examples. But that would bring us back to skewing the economy.

  615. #615 SEF
    January 8, 2009

    @ Facilis #522 + #533:

    Logic doesn’t need a god to create it any more than the numbers 1, 2 etc do or the concepts of inside and outside (eg for a set). You haven’t shown any evidence that it does, let alone evidence for a particular god. You’re incompetent or dishonest or both. I think, on the basis of the evidence you’ve provided against yourself, that it’s both.

    If god created logic then why are the god-believers the most logic-challenged people around? Why is it an ability demonstrably held more by atheists than theists (cf scientists)?

    In reality, logic is a natural thing easily invented by both the most unintelligent entities in nature (albeit inadvertently) and the intelligent ones (who typically feel the need to be formulaic about it and develop definitions to which it applies). It’s the semi-intelligent ones who have difficulty with it. That means you, Facilis.

  616. #616 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    Of course, there’s also Kel’s water-into-vodka request, which to date has not happened. With the vodka (assuming it only happened once), we would only have Kel’s word that it had ever been water. I think my examples would be more general, and could theoretically shown to many, many people, or even to humanity at large.

    My test is entirely subjective, I’m the first one willing to admit that. And if my water turned to vodka, I know that I could only take it as personal validation and nothing more.

    The test exists because Pilty challenged. He said that each one of us should ask God to find out for ourselves. I took his challenge up and I’d say it’s been around two months and with two separate bottles (one at my work desk, one at my home desk) and in those two months not once has the water been anything but water. Of course then Pilty admitted the test was flawed for the reason I specified above (the lord works in mysterious ways, so he’s untestable) so in effect the challenge that was thrown down was thrown down on an invalid premise. Pilty was just evangelising.

    I know by no means that the water staying water is not a disproof for God. I’m running this test purely to stop Pilty saying that we aren’t asking God whether he is there.

  617. #617 SEF
    January 8, 2009

    But Bacchus might have some objection to vodka. You should open your mind to the possibility of more than one sort of alcoholic beverage transformation. Then you might be able to determine (or at least narrow down) which god has finally bothered to start existing.

  618. #618 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    I know by no means that the water staying water is not a disproof for God. I’m running this test purely to stop Pilty saying that we aren’t asking God whether he is there.

    I’m running the same experiment in parallel. So far no vodka in either water bottle. Pilty’s god is looking very wimpy.

  619. #619 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    But Bacchus might have some objection to vodka. You should open your mind to the possibility of more than one sort of alcoholic beverage transformation. Then you might be able to determine (or at least narrow down) which god has finally bothered to start existing.

    No problem:

    • Water into wine would make a bit more sense I suppose.
  620. #620 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    There’s nothing that could convince me that the god defined by the broader Judeo-Christian belief system exists – because that god is a logical contradiction; as far as I’m concerned it cannot, as they describe it, exist.

    A god like Yahweh could exist, but I sincerely hope that it doesn’t, because that god is a monster, in all senses of the word. That god being real would be a nightmare for all living creatures.

    Should any of the conditions described by the above posters be met I suspect the god we’d be dealing with would be an entirely new entity unlike that of any of the major belief systems. But I’ve never been able to reconcile the idea of a creator being that demanded worship and punished its absence – let alone one that did those things while working very hard to hide its existence from those it demanded worship from.

  621. #621 Alyson
    January 8, 2009

    @God #604:

    I’d be satisfied with water-to-beer.

  622. #622 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    Bad formatting there, sorry.

  623. #623 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    About post 600:
    I was not saying that dark matter is God. When I think of evidence someone has been somewhere, I could look for prints. I was saying that it could be footprints. Or not. But that’s what I think we can physically find, ‘footprints’. That’s the physical evidence for a Creator that I believe is possible to find. And under the assumption that there is a Creator who is involved with us, then there would have to be ‘footprints’. And if no one has found them yet, I do not shy away. You ask for evidence, this is not me dodging, this is my answer. I’m also not talking about you having to disprove the existence of God. And for the people that are very rude on this site, this is the last sentence you will receive from me, and I am a grown up so if I want to symbol out my cuss words I will. To the other people, I’m sorry for my outburst.

  624. #624 danny m
    January 8, 2009

    Someone just sent me this on my blog.

    What is science? There are several answers but the 2 below sum it up. According to encarta.msn.com/dictionary–science is:
    *study of physical world: the study of the physical and natural world and phenomena, especially by using systematic observation and experiment

    *something studied or performed methodically: an activity that is the object of careful study or that is carried out according to a developed method

    Science derives from: French< Latin scientia< scient-, present participle of scire “know, discern” < Indo-European, “cut”]

    ***Encarta also offers:
    blind somebody with science- to confuse or overwhelm somebody by giving an impenetrable explanation using technical terms and concepts
    ———————————————————–
    For science to find evidence for a Creator, then said Creator would have to have left footprints in our physical universe. Even if God is Spirit, He could still leave ‘footprints’ in the physical side. If He did not then no, science would not ever be able to investigate God. So MY desire for science to find evidence of God is dependent on Him being involved with the physical side of the universe, shich I am sure you already know. But I just saw that def. someone sent me….This really needs no comment I’m just talking.

  625. #625 God
    January 8, 2009

    [Demands for vodka, wine, beer, and so on]

    Had I not created wheat and grapes and potatoes and barley and hops and yeast, and the laws governing biochemistry and distillation, you poor sad apes would not even know what vodka and wine and beer were.

    Where’s the gratitude, I ask?

    *sniff*

    Kids these days, demanding proof and even higher proof….

  626. #626 Satan
    January 8, 2009

    Had I not created wheat and grapes and potatoes and barley and hops and yeast, and the laws governing biochemistry and distillation, you poor sad apes would not even know what vodka and wine and beer were.

    Where’s the gratitude, I ask?

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but are not those same “laws of biochemistry” responsible for alcohol being addictive, and disabling and fatal in higher doses?

    Just curious, here. I mean, You can’t blame Me for that.

  627. #627 SEF
    January 8, 2009

    You forgot apples in there. Are you trying to play that mistake down? ;-)

  628. #628 God
    January 8, 2009

    Correct me if I’m wrong

    You’re wrong.

    but are not those same “laws of biochemistry” responsible for alcohol being addictive, and disabling and fatal in higher doses?

    Your point being?

    I mean, You can’t blame Me for that.

    Oh, yes I can.

  629. #629 Satan
    January 8, 2009

    Oh, yes I can.

    *sigh*

    Can You blame Me for wanting to forget?

    You forgot apples in there.

    Yes, that’s right; cider. I’ve heard that it’s good.

  630. #630 God
    January 8, 2009

    Can You blame Me for wanting to forget?

    You should know the answer to that one, too: Hell, yes.

    Heh.

  631. #631 Owlmirror
    January 8, 2009

    Danny M @ # 622/633:

    When I think of evidence someone has been somewhere, I could look for prints. I was saying that it could be footprints. Or not. But that’s what I think we can physically find, ‘footprints’. That’s the physical evidence for a Creator that I believe is possible to find.

    But there is a very important point that those who suggest these sorts of things always miss.

    We know that footprints match up to feet because we have plenty of evidence of how feet interact with the ground, and how they go about leaving those very prints in the first place!

    Where are God’s feet, to leave prints? What size are they? How many toes does God have, and how are they shaped? How does his heel and arch curve? How would we know that something is a footprint of God if God does not show us his “feet”?

    I’m using the same words as the analogy, but the same question can be asked more generally: Given something found in the universe, how would it be possible to know that the only way that that thing could have come into existence was from God, especially since we don’t have evidence of God in the first place?

    And under the assumption that there is a Creator who is involved with us, then there would have to be ‘footprints’.

    And why ‘footprints’ anyway, rather than direct communication? Can you even begin to address that?

  632. #632 Nerd of Redhead
    January 8, 2009

    For science to find evidence for a Creator

    Danny, this is impossible. Science does not deal with god, and therefore can never find god. Period. End of story. Why do you keep trying to pretend it does? Anything science finds will be given a natural explanation without any need to invoke god. What part of this are you having trouble with?

  633. #633 phantomreader42
    January 8, 2009

    danny m whining @#585:

    phantomreader42: PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do not write another FU(*&ng word in my direction. You willfully ignorant sutpid person who is only on this site to fight, so much so that he does not even take the time to see that I was challenging ‘believers’ to stop dodging questions. I have tried over and over and over and over again to explain that I have nothing against you, but guess what, i was wrong. I hope that you never write another word to me you piece of crap.

    Well, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE shut the fuck up! You’re the one who came in here babbling about imaginary gods and demanding other people look for evidence for you. If you want to hide from reality, this isn’t the place to do it.

    I saw that you were pretending to criticize your fellow believers for dodging questions, but in the same post you tried to shift the burden of looking for answers onto others. That’s a lazy, stupid, dishonest thing to do, and you know it.

    So you are cordially invited to kiss my ass.

  634. #634 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    Danny,

    Something to think about – science has not only found no evidence for a creator but has found much evidence for life existing without the need for a creator; it’s not just one or the other, but both.

    If a god does exist then it does not want us to know about it – we cannot ever prove that an infinitely powerful being isn’t affecting the universe and erasing its tracks; that would be impossible. However, that isn’t the god described by Judeo/Christianity; it is the god of Deism.

    Should a god act in such a way that it doesn’t want to be found, it would be more than a little unreasonable for it to expect that we would treat it in the way most human religions seem to think it wants to be treated – feared, sucked-up to, worshiped etc. – and certainly wouldn’t bother itself with anything as insignificant as judging us on our behaviour, nor require any of the Messiah/crucifixion/resurrection nonsense, which is – when you think about it – the worst kind of illogical piffle.

    Basically, there’s either a non-interventionist god or no god at all.

  635. #635 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    Regarding profanity:
    “What’s the big fucking deal? It doesn’t hurt anybody. Fuck, fuckity, fuck fuck fuck. ” – Eric Cartman

  636. #636 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    What’s the big FCCing deal? FCC, FCCity, FCC, FCC, FCC. Cartman is a Republican.

  637. #637 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @Kel

    Fallacious offers platonism?

    1)If reason is merely a platonic form , how can it govern our minds and thoughts (almost like some kind of personal agent)?
    2)How can these platonic forms communicate themselves to us so we can be certain of these truths?

  638. #638 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    And yet you still haven’t explained why logic and rationality can only exist if it was specifically Yahweh, the broader Judeo-Christian deity, who created the universe.

    How is this not explained by, say, Zeus creating the universe? That would make far more sense, considering the Greeks were far more concerned with the study of formal logic than the Isralites.
    I think we better stick to the beliefs each of us hold. We’ll see between theism and atheism which better account for the objective, invariant, universal ,immaterial laws of logic and reason.

  639. #639 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    facilis, #636

    That was Ken Cope (#594), not Kel.

  640. #640 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @CJO

    We’re not accounting for any of that, but then, you haven’t provided any justification for considering logic in this way, you’ve merely asserted that it is.

    What do you disagree with?

  641. #641 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    @Matt

    If by “account for” you mean “give an explanation of how these things came to exist”, then Dan Dennett’s all over it, from a purely naturalistic (and therefore atheistic, a-fairy-istic position and a-whatever-other-mythical-placeholder-istic) angle, tracking the historical development of such things.

    I’m not talking about how humans became rational. I’m talking aout the laws of logic and reason that held long before humans.The sun was itself and not the moon (ie the logical law of identity held) long before humans existed.

  642. #642 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    I think we better stick to the beliefs each of us hold.

    Why? Just so you can play off God against nothing? God plays off against all other deities who ever have or ever will be called on to explain the universe. It’s the nature of theism. Why Yahweh and not Brahman? It would make more sense given that followers of Brahman came up with 0; a concept that had to be imported to followers of Yahweh. Wouldn’t that make the pantheon a better fit than your theist mangod?

  643. #643 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    I think we better stick to the beliefs each of us hold. We’ll see between theism and atheism which better account for the objective, invariant, universal ,immaterial laws of logic and reason.

    I hold no beliefs. Remember?

    You first need to justify why it is the god of your religion has a stronger claim to the things you’ve listed than any other. Until then I’ve got no more reason to accept that Yahweh is any more responsible for logic and reason than the plastic Sideshow Bob figurine that sits next to my PC.

  644. #644 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    As for logic, we can account for logic through evolutionary measures, we can see the foundations required for logic in other creatures and our ability to do logic is completely explainable through natural processes. If the laws of logic were universal and given by Yahweh, why would Christian Europe have existed so long without the concept 0, and needed the Allah-worshippers to take the concept of 0 from the pantheists of India and import it into Europe? It seems like Brahman would be a better explanation for logic than Yahweh.

    What I’m talking aboout is the absolute, invariant, universal, immaterial laws of logic and reason. Even if you explain that humans evolved and were able to understand these laws, you still haven’t shown what the source of these laws is.

  645. #645 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    I’m not Kel, and Kel’s not me.

    The sun was itself and not the moon (ie the logical law of identity held) long before humans existed.

    “Millions of months passed. Then, twenty-eight days later, the Moon appeared…”

  646. #646 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    I’m not talking about how humans became rational. I’m talking aout the laws of logic and reason that held long before humans.The sun was itself and not the moon (ie the logical law of identity held) long before humans existed.

    What the fuck?

    So I suppose God was God so where did that identity come from?

  647. #647 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    I’m not Kel, and Kel’s not me.

    Just think, the universe is me and the universe is you but we are not the universe. We are matter arranged into a particular order, and once we die the atoms that bind us will be cast from our current forms and some of it will be together again. For at one time I was you and you were me, but that was before me and you ceased to be you and me by the rearrangement of atoms. So while you are not me and I’m not you now, one day again in the future there will be every chance that part of you is part of me, though that will not be you and it will not be me. Going even further, if theoretical physicists are correct in the oscillating universe theorem, then we will again be each other and will be at one with the universe.

    Unfortunately that means we’ll be part of facilis, but it won’t be facilis because he is not you or me.

  648. #648 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    Logic doesn’t need a god to create it

    God didn’t create logic and reason in the sense you are thinking. I hold that the laws of logic and reason are the reflection of the perfectly rational,absolute, immaterial, unnchanging,timeless nature of God.

    any more than the numbers 1, 2 etc

    I do hold to the view that God is the source of mathematical laws also

    do or the concepts of inside and outside (eg for a set).

    Inside and outside do not have an objective existence like logical and mathematical laws do. They are purely subjective, based on human points of reference.

    You haven’t shown any evidence that it does, let alone evidence for a particular god.

    You haven’t even accounted for reason yet. You cannot get to evidence yet.

    You’re incompetent or dishonest or both.

    Please account for the objective standard of morality you use to call me dishonest.

    It’s the semi-intelligent ones who have difficulty with it. That means you, Facilis.

    ad hominem

  649. #649 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    What I’m talking aboout is the absolute, invariant, universal, immaterial laws of logic and reason.

    Okay, say we assume your god gave them to humanity. Where did he get them from? We’re talking a long time ago; it’s not like he found them going for a good price on Ebay.

  650. #650 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    Wowbagger

    There’s nothing that could convince me that the god defined by the broader Judeo-Christian belief system exists – because that god is a logical contradiction

    Account for the absolute ,immaterial, invariant,universal laws of logic and reason you used to conclude it was a contradiction

  651. #651 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    The question is, is the sun the sun? The arrangement of atoms 4.6 billion years ago would be different to the arrangement of atoms that reside in the sun today. Many hydrogen atoms have been fused into helium, it’s pushed out much of it’s energy into space, it’s taking on atoms given off by other stars, and one day the sun will die and it’s atoms will scatter. How does the law of identity hold true for it? The sun as it stands now is not the same as it will be 10 seconds from now, and in billions of years, the sun will not be the sun, rather the parts of the sun will gather maybe to form new stellar objects.

    Why does it seem that we are imposing identity over non-static objects that are dependant on the context of observation?

  652. #652 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    facilis,

    I think we better stick to the beliefs each of us hold.

    Why? If someone were to say “Reason proves the existence of the Greek gods” you would, I hope, realize that’s absurd and begging the question. Yet that’s the argument you made for God.

    People frequently say “You can’t disprove God” as if that’s unique to God. The same can be said about the Greek gods, flying spaghetti monster, etc.

    Either demonstrate that your God is more believable than a flying spaghetti monster or we will keep substitute them in place of God into your arguments to show how silly they are.

  653. #653 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    Okay, say we assume your god gave them to humanity. Where did he get them from? We’re talking a long time ago; it’s not like he found them going for a good price on Ebay.

    God’s nature is immaterial, timeless,unchanging, universal and rational. The laws of logic we use to reason are just reflections of his immaterial,unchanging,timeless and universal nature, that we follow so we can reason in his image.

  654. #654 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    If reason is merely a platonic form

    Ask a platonist. Why is so much civility being afforded this sophomoric fuckwit?

  655. #655 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    Dammit, I really should stop hitting the post button so soon. The last paragraph in #651 should read:

    Either demonstrate that your God is more believable than a flying spaghetti monster, greek Gods, etc. or we will keep substituting them in place of God into your arguments to show how silly they are.

  656. #656 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    And for that matter, how does the truism apply to the moon? An asteroid hit the earth and broke off enough off the earth to form the moon. So the moon is the earth, but it is not the earth. For the earth 4.5 billion years ago included part of the moon that the earth of today does not include. So when the asteroid hit the earth and broke off the moon, where does that leave the identity of either? For that matter, is the moon still the moon when it’s bombarded with meteorites, or is the earth still the earth when the same happens? In 5 billion years time when the sun explodes it will expand to encompass the earth, the earth and moon will be consumed under intense heat. Then the particles of the earth and the moon will be floating in space, gravity forming new objects in a new cycle of the solar system. The earth will be the moon will be the sun, will be the other planets.

    And now my brain hurts.

  657. #657 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    Account for the absolute, immaterial, invariant, universal laws of logic and reason you used to conclude it was a contradiction

    Well, duh. That’s obvious – the plastic figurine of Sideshow Bob that sits next to my PC gave them to me.

    Go ahead – prove that he didn’t.

  658. #658 Feynmaniac
    January 8, 2009

    I hold that the laws of logic and reason are the reflection of the perfectly rational,absolute, immaterial, unnchanging,timeless nature of God.

    Yes, you hold it but you have yet to even try to demonstrate it. You merely asserted it.

  659. #659 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    In which Kel and Ken discourse (whilst Ken warms up the blu-ray)
    For at one time I was you and you were me, but that was before me and you ceased to be you and me by the rearrangement of atoms.

    You say “I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together”

    And I say “I can’t pretend to be someone who pretends to be someone else, or so my pretend friends tell me.”

    Why does it seem that we are imposing identity over non-static objects that are dependant on the context of observation?

    “The ship wherein Theseus and the youth of Athens returned had thirty oars, and was preserved by the Athenians down even to the time of Demetrius Phalereus, for they took away the old planks as they decayed, putting in new and stronger timber in their place, insomuch that this ship became a standing example among the philosophers, for the logical question of things that grow; one side holding that the ship remained the same, and the other contending that it was not the same.”

  660. #660 Facilis
    January 8, 2009

    How does the law of identity hold true for it?

    We get define its identity by giving an ontology. I could robaly describe the sun as a hot hydrogen spherical object around which our planets revovle. Unless it loses one of these characteristics its identity is the same.
    But of course this has nothing do with it it. The sun cannot be the sun and the moon at the same time, because they are mutually exclusive identities. That’s the law of identity.

  661. #661 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    One more time, for the Vedantists!

    1. THEN was not non-existent nor existent: there was no realm of air, no sky beyond it.
    What covered in, and where? and what gave shelter? Was water there, unfathomed depth of water?
    2 Death was not then, nor was there aught immortal: no sign was there, the day’s and night’s divider.
    That One Thing, breathless, breathed by its own nature: apart from it was nothing whatsoever.
    3 Darkness there was: at first concealed in darkness this All was indiscriminated chaos.
    All that existed then was void and form less: by the great power of Warmth was born that Unit.
    4 Thereafter rose Desire in the beginning, Desire, the primal seed and germ of Spirit.
    Sages who searched with their heart’s thought discovered the existent’s kinship in the non-existent.
    5 Transversely was their severing line extended: what was above it then, and what below it?
    There were begetters, there were mighty forces, free action here and energy up yonder
    6 Who verily knows and who can here declare it, whence it was born and whence comes this creation?
    The Gods are later than this world’s production. Who knows then whence it first came into being?
    7 He, the first origin of this creation, whether he formed it all or did not form it,
    Whose eye controls this world in highest heaven, he verily knows it, or perhaps he knows not.

  662. #662 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    The sun cannot be the sun and the moon at the same time, because they are mutually exclusive identities. That’s the law of identity.

    Pfft. What makes you think Sideshow Bob is bound by your puny ‘rules’? If he wants the sun to be the sun and the moon at the same time then it can. He can make it the sun, the moon, a cardboard cutout of Erik Estrada, the colour aquamarine and a six-wicket haul (including a hat-trick) in the second innings of a test match against England if he wants. All at the same time.

    After all, he’s Sideshow Bob. He created the absolute, immaterial, invariant, universal laws of logic and reason.

  663. #663 Kel
    January 8, 2009

    What I don’t get about facilis’ argument is that he’s saying that the universe needs a logic giver but the logic giver doesn’t need a logic giver and that it’s simply part of the nature of the logic giver. Why can’t we just drop one step out of that and say that the universe doesn’t need a logic giver? It just seems we are making it unnecessarily complex by positing a logic giver.

  664. #664 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    the universe needs a logic giver but the logic giver doesn’t need a logic giver and that it’s simply part of the nature of the logic giver.

    “You can’t fool me, young man! It’s turtles all the way down!”

  665. #665 Wowbagger
    January 8, 2009

    What I don’t get about facilis’ argument…

    What I don’t get about facilis’ argument – nah, that’ll take too long. I’d better go with what I do get about facilis’ argument: he’s making ludicrous, unsupported assertions and demanding we accept them.

    Unfortunately (for him), that shit just – as they say – ain’t gonna fly.

  666. #666 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    Did I say turtle? Sorry, I meant Turtle.

  667. #667 Ken Cope
    January 8, 2009

    The sun cannot be the sun and the moon at the same time, because they are mutually exclusive identities. That’s the law of identity.

    This tells us fuckall about the difference between the Sun and the Moon. This kind of “law” is about as useful as FCCing astrology. I’ll tell you what would be useful. Some sort of teledildonic hyper-glove that can reach through the screen and slap some sense into the massive waste of brain cycles masquerading as Facilis every time he hits send on anything half as stupid as the shite he’s been spouting these past few days. There’d be people lining up just to operate it.

  668. #668 Wowbagger
    January 9, 2009

    Thing is, the tripe facilis is dishing up at the moment is very different from what he’s posted in the past – before he was focused on the incontrovertible fact (in his mind at least) of the crucifixion; now he’s babbling on about the origins of logic.

    Methinks he’s been hitting a few apologists’ websites for ideas and found this particularly nonsensical one – which the original author no doubt touted as ‘irrefutable’ – and dragged it back here imagining he’d render us dumbstruck and claim victory for Jesus.

    I guess it sucks to be him.

  669. #669 Kem
    January 9, 2009

    I hold that the laws of logic and reason are the reflection of the perfectly rational,absolute, immaterial, unnchanging,timeless nature of God.

    Just out of curiosity, would you agree that God can only do that which is in his nature; that is, that which is logical and reasonable; that which is “perfectly rational”?

  670. #670 CJO
    January 9, 2009

    There’d be people lining up just to operate it.

    lulz. First!

  671. #671 Kel
    January 9, 2009

    All facilis’ arguments remind me of the Euthyphro dilemma.
    “Is what is moral commanded by God because it is moral, or is it moral because it is commanded by God?” Except replace moral with whatever parameter he’s trying to say the universe needs a god to explain.

  672. #672 Ken Cope
    January 9, 2009

    Oh, Kel (are you sure your name isn’t Kem?), you’ll get the theobots besotted with VD to again claim that whatever is commanded by God is moral. If I were accused of yer classic biblical crimes against humanity, I’d want to pin the blame on something infinitely simple and complex that was also the basis of logic that made me do it so that I could be standing on the moral high ground, high-fiving the she-bears amongst the crushed skulls of the children who had called me ‘bald-pate,” or I would, if I were the sort of sociopath who doesn’t see anything wrong with that…

  673. #673 Kem
    January 9, 2009

    God’s nature is immaterial, timeless,unchanging, universal and rational.

    So in other words, God’s nature proves that God is not the God spoken of in the bible.

    The laws of logic we use to reason are just reflections of his immaterial,unchanging,timeless and universal nature, that we follow so we can reason in his image.

    And yet the perfect application of reason shows that either God has no power at all, God knows nothing, or God is not good — or that, most parsimoniously, God is nonexistent.

  674. #674 Wowbagger
    January 9, 2009

    Kem wrote:

    And yet the perfect application of reason shows that either God has no power at all, God knows nothing, or God is not good — or that, most parsimoniously, God is nonexistent.

    No doubt facilis – should he darken our door once more – will, yet again, question whence you obtained the reason with which you infer his god’s impotence, ignorance, malevolence, or nonexistence.

  675. #675 Kel
    January 9, 2009

    Oh, Kel (are you sure your name isn’t Kem?)

    I’m having an identity crisis here!

  676. #676 Ken Cope
    January 9, 2009

    I’m having an identity crisis here!

    But you can’t! There’s a law of identity! Our identities are mutally exclusive! As for Kem, I think that’s just a misspelling of “chem,” the Chinese (well, Japanese, really) fortune cookie baked into a golem as a sort of boot drive to define its identity.

  677. #677 Ken Cope
    January 9, 2009

    Methinks he’s been hitting a few apologists’ websites for ideas and found this particularly nonsensical one – which the original author no doubt touted as ‘irrefutable’ – and dragged it back here

    Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of Jack Chick tracts tooling up Highway 101.

  678. #678 John Morales
    January 9, 2009

    Heh, just caught up with this thread. Facilis is apparently borrowing from Clarkian presuppositionalism.

  679. #679 Ken Cope
    January 9, 2009

    Facilis is apparently borrowing from Clarkian presuppositionalism.

    You don’t suppose we can convince him to return it, or at least put it back in the freezer? It’s way past its sell-by date.

    You don’t suppose he’s consumed any of that, do you?

    Ew.

  680. #680 Kel
    January 9, 2009

    But you can’t! There’s a law of identity!

    Phew, for a second there I thought I was caught in a paradox. Lucky it turned out to be a non sequitur.

  681. #681 Kem
    January 9, 2009

    As for Kem, I think that’s just a misspelling of “chem,” the Chinese (well, Japanese, really) fortune cookie baked into a golem as a sort of boot drive to define its identity.

    Pfft. Pratchett is a good writer, but he doesn’t know languages. Or he creatively mangles them, who knows?

    And that should be Hebrew fortune (Japanese???).

    http://www.lspace.org/books/apf/feet-of-clay.html#p94

    And actually, I’m a bear sent by God to tear facilis to pieces as punishment for mocking God’s Holy Logic.

  682. #682 SEF
    January 9, 2009

    @ Facilis #636:

    If reason is merely a platonic form , how can it govern our minds and thoughts (almost like some kind of personal agent)?

    Since it doesn’t govern your thoughts at all, it can’t be very good at it. I.e. not the sort of platonic form which is supposed to cause crystals to reliably take up the same habit every time (an old bogus idea pre-dating crystallography as a proper science).

    How can these platonic forms communicate themselves to us so we can be certain of these truths?

    That how was a sticking point for the Platonists too. But in your case, since you barely know any truths at all and are only certain that the falsehoods you prefer are “true”, it’s rather evident no such force is acting. So there’s nothing further to explain.

  683. #683 SEF
    January 9, 2009

    @ Facilis #647:

    I hold that the laws of logic and reason are the reflection of the perfectly rational,absolute, immaterial, unnchanging,timeless nature of God.

    But, tellingly, you do so on the basis of mere assertion and no evidence whatsoever. You’re rubbish at this logic and reasoning stuff.

    I do hold to the view that God is the source of mathematical laws also

    Again only by your evidence-free assertion. He certainly got pi wrong in the Bible (an error which applies to all the Abrahamic sub-versions of a god). So there’s testimony against that god being very numerate. The Egyptians with their gods were a bit smarter but still not right.

    Inside and outside do not have an objective existence like logical and mathematical laws do.

    Then you can’t say that the sun is not the moon (#640) because you have no concept of an outside the sun for the moon to be!

    Hoist with your own petard – as was inevitable given your mental, educational and moral retardation. When you simply make up any nonsense you want without regard for truth, you are bound to contradict other falsehoods you’ve previously drivelled. You’re a self-refuting fool (as well as one continually refuted by reality).

    The remaining question is whether you are too stupid even to recognise you’ve shot yourself in the foot now that I’ve pointed it out (and/or are too dishonest to admit it). I expect many regular pharyngulites will see it though. They’re generally not as retarded as you.

    You haven’t even accounted for reason yet. You cannot get to evidence yet.

    Untrue in the first part (your ignoring of my doing it doesn’t make it unhappen or go away) and a false, non sequitur of a claim in the second part. You’ve shown no reason why reason needs to precede evidence – in reality it’s more the other way round (one can’t reason at all without something on which to reason, ie evidence)! And you’re the one who has failed to show either reason or evidence for your (false claims) about reason and evidence.

    account for the objective standard of morality you use to call me dishonest

    There is no fully objective standard of morality (eg human ones generally favour humans and wasp ones don’t) and, more importantly, no such standard is required anyway for the observation that you say things which even you know are untrue. That’s a simple matter of evidence and definition. If you weren’t so mentally, educationally and morally retarded you wouldn’t have tried that false argument.

    ad hominem

    Untrue because my point was both true and very relevant to the argument. It’s the why behind you being bad at it – as you’ve just demonstrated again. You start with false definitions (and premises) and you can barely think coherently / logically at all.

  684. #684 SEF
    January 9, 2009

    Oops – one of those brackets grabbed too much text! It should have read “your (false) claims about reason and evidence”.

  685. #685 Kel
    January 9, 2009

    Ad hominem – you’re argument is wrong because you are an idiot!
    not Ad hominem – you’re argument is wrong for X, Y & Z. You are such an idiot!

    Hope that’s clear.

  686. #686 SEF
    January 9, 2009

    Indeed. A genuine “ad hominem” has to be in lieu of an argument rather than additional, quite possibly significant, information tagged onto the argument.

    Unlike with defamation though, for an ad hominem it isn’t actually relevant (in the definition of it) whether the “ad hominem” content is true or not. So, childishly, one could make an ad hominem attack of “You smell!” against either an unwashed or clean person (instead of making an argument against whatever they’d said).

    Maybe sometime (either for amusement or instruction of the ignorant) there should be a truth-table for the various conditions on all these definitions. There might be some vacant slots in need of naming … (although it’s rather likely the most useful have already been named).

  687. #687 Kel
    January 9, 2009

    Maybe we need a logical fallacy flow chart.

  688. #688 SEF
    January 9, 2009

    Having given this a few more moments of thought while bird-watching, I think a case could be made that a name is needed for ad hominem flattery or vacuousness, rather than merely ad hominem attacks, made in lieu of an argument. Eg for when religious people have to resort to “I’ll pray for you” or similar.

  689. #689 KnockGoats
    January 9, 2009

    Even if you explain that humans evolved and were able to understand these laws [of logic and reason], you still haven’t shown what the source of these laws is. – Facilis

    You have not even attempted to argue that “laws” of logic, reason and mathematics require a source (I put “laws” in scare-quotes because these laws do not resemble either human legislation nor natural laws). You have simply asserted that they do, and that it is God. Your failure to provide an argument simply exposes your intellectual and moral bankruptcy.

    It is, as I have already pointed out, simply false that even the laws of logic are universally agreed in all respects; attempts have been made, with disputed results, to frame formal logics that drop even the law of non-contradiction (these are called “paraconsistent logics” – some of their developers, known as dialetheists, claim that some contradictions are true). Logic, reason and mathematics have application only when there are beings capable of formulating propositions that can be true of false, accurate or inaccurate. If there is no God, then, these things did not exist until we, or other such beings, formulated them. Their source is our shared experience in reasoning, successfully and unsuccessfully.

  690. #690 Wowbagger
    January 9, 2009

    Maybe we need a logical fallacy flow chart.

    I still think we need a dictionary link for words such as ‘bigot’ and ‘intolerant’ – it would have come in very handy during crackergate.

  691. #691 KnockGoats
    January 9, 2009

    BTW, Facilis, I’m still waiting for a reply to my #510.

  692. #692 Matt Heath
    January 9, 2009

    Facilis, If you are honestly seeking to knowledge and seriously want to know what a non-foundationalist (non-Platonist, non-divine command) account of logic, I am told than Quine is the guy to look up (I confess I have not read him myself, only the précises in reference books) . If you just wish, in the interests on godbotting, to assert that no such account could exist the kindly fuck off.

  693. #693 Wowbagger
    January 9, 2009

    KnockGoats,

    I doubt you’ll get an answer to any question that hasn’t already been asked by someone else on the blog/forum facilis is plagiarising appropriating his arguments from – someone, obviously, who is fond of (as John Morales pointed out) Clarkian presuppositionalism.

    Heck, he couldn’t deal with the assertion that my Sideshow Bob figurine was just as capable of being responsible for everything he attributed to his god; I seriously doubt he’s going to be able to cope with sensible questions like yours.

    Either that or he’s pestering his ‘inspiration’ for a response that he can cut-and-paste on his return.

  694. #694 Nerd of Redhead
    January 9, 2009

    I see deluded Facilis is still trying to shoehorn his imaginary god in somewhere. Absolute logic? Sounds like woo without need for a god. Logic was devised by man, not god. God is not needed for anything, except to satisfy idiots like Facilis. Why is he having trouble with the concept, and why his he continuing to post here about it? Inquiring minds want to know.

  695. #695 phantomreader42
    January 9, 2009

    Facilis babbled in #643:

    What I’m talking aboout is the absolute, invariant, universal, immaterial laws of logic and reason.

    Oh, and what laws are those EXACTLY? Go ahead, list, in exact detail, each and every one of these “absolute, invariant, universal, immaterial laws of logic and reason”. If there’s any disagreement, that’s proof that they’re not universal. If any follow from properties of matter, that’s proof they’re not immaterial. If any of them have a single exception, that’s proof they’re not absoulte or invariant. And if you leave any out, that’s proof you don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about. So go ahead, detail EXACTLY what these “absolute, invariant, universal, immaterial laws of logic and reason” say, or shut up about them.

    Facilis babbled again, in #652:

    God’s nature is immaterial, timeless,unchanging, universal and rational. The laws of logic we use to reason are just reflections of his immaterial,unchanging,timeless and universal nature, that we follow so we can reason in his image.

    Oh, so by this gobbledygook, your god is clearly nothing at all like the christian god, who engages in random atrocities (irrational acts), has wild mood swings (not unchanging and therefore also not timeless), and is said to have manifested physically (which makes one material). In fact, I can’t recall a single god of any religion of note that comes close to meeting your criteria.

    So go ahead and define ALL the properties of your god EXACTLY. Don’t leave any room for weaseling. What does your god want, from whom, and why, what did it do, and when, and how do you know these things?

    Of course, you’ll flee in terror from these questions, because if you define your “laws” and your “god” it will be easy to show that they are trivial, contradictory, or incompatible with reality. So you’ll just keep babbling and throwing around sophistic bullshit.

  696. #696 Ken Cope
    January 9, 2009

    Kem @680: And that should be Hebrew fortune (Japanese???)

    I was ignoring Sir Pterry’s derivation (Mezuzah?), having just watched a fun presentation by Jennifer 8. Lee on the origins of “Chinese” food.

    Happy shredding!

  697. #697 Owlmirror
    January 9, 2009

    Re: Clarkian presuppositionalism.

    So that was the source of John Knight’s rabid philosophistry!

    Christianity is a coherent world-view. It is a self-consistent set of principles. Christian metaphysics do not make much sense if you start with atheist metaphysics, but the reverse is obviously true as well. To use Kuhnian language, the paradigms are incommensurable. The point is that Christian metaphysics & epistemology make sense if viewed as a complete unit.

    By contrast, in my experience, other world-views run into fatal contradictions. This problem makes them unacceptable alternatives.

  698. #698 Owlmirror
    January 9, 2009

    Re: Clarkian presuppositionalism.

    So that was the source of John Knight’s rabid philosophistry!

    Christianity is a coherent world-view. It is a self-consistent set of principles. Christian metaphysics do not make much sense if you start with atheist metaphysics, but the reverse is obviously true as well. To use Kuhnian language, the paradigms are incommensurable. The point is that Christian metaphysics & epistemology make sense if viewed as a complete unit.

    By contrast, in my experience, other world-views run into fatal contradictions. This problem makes them unacceptable alternatives.

  699. #699 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    I had a thought about facilis’ position on identity. If we take the Christian doctrine of the holy trinity, then that identity logic that facilis says God represents cannot apply. Denial of the trinity would have to follow with this line of arguing, and that throws who Jesus was and his role into question.

  700. #700 Malcolm
    January 11, 2009

    After all that weaselling by Facilis to be allowed to present a philosophical argument in place of evidence, the best he (she?)can come up with is “the existence of logic proves God.” What an anticlimax.

    What gets me is that facilis doesn’t even bother to try to produce a logical argument to back it up.

  701. #701 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @Redhead

    Logic was devised by man, not god

    Before humans evolved,did the laws of logic apply?

  702. #702 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    I’m not going to get baited by you guys. If I answer your questions about the Greek Gods and refute them you will probaly just posit another false God for me to refute and continue positing other Gods until I get frustrated/have to leave and then claim victory when I do so.
    If you really are going to go down this route we should first agree that some kind of God does exist and atheism is false.
    It also shows me that you guys are unable to defend atheism and have to posit a God for logic to make sense.
    And I would also like to note to all those people who posit entities like Zeus,plastic Slideshow bob and FSM that these things are made of material (Sorry but spaghetti is necessarily made of material) and slideshow bob and Zeus came into existence at a point in time , much unlike the immaterial,invariant, eternal laws of logic.

  703. #703 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @Kel

    the universe needs a logic giver but the logic giver doesn’t need a logic giver and that it’s simply part of the nature of the logic giver.

    The laws of logic are a reflection of the consistent, absolute ,objective ,universal,invariant ,unchanging nature of God. What is so hard to get?

    Maybe we need a logical fallacy flow chart.

    I love logical fallacy flowcharts because they prove the existence of the absolute,universal, immaterial, objective,invariant laws of logic and reason (which atheists cannot account for).

  704. #704 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    will, yet again, question whence you obtained the reason with which you infer his god’s impotence, ignorance, malevolence, or nonexistence.

    You cannot use reason or logic to deny God and his necessary attributes. Doing so would be like me and you debating the existence of air , while you are breating it all the time. Or a child climbing up on his father’s knee to slap him. It’s self-deception. Atheists are in denial when they claim o reject God and still be rational.You cannot deny air while breathing. You cannot reason while rejecting God.

  705. #705 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, laws of logic are construct of man. What part of that are you having trouble understanding? You are quite dense today.

  706. #706 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @SEF

    That how was a sticking point for the Platonists too.

    So you admit platonists cannot account for the laws of logic and reason?

    But in your case, since you barely know any truths at all

    Please demonstrate this, and tell me how you account for universal truths within your worldview and how you can know these truths and why they necessarily apply to my argument.

    But, tellingly, you do so on the basis of mere assertion and no evidence whatsoever.

    The evidence is the impossibility of the contrary. Without God it would not be possible to account for anything.

    He certainly got pi wrong

    Are you certain that he did not get the value of pi correct? Account for the absolute, universal ,invariant, abstract sandard of mathematical truths that you use to make this claim and explain why it necessarily applies to God.

    moral retardation

    But you just said that morality is subjective. In my subjective opinion everything I am doing is fine so I guess I’ll continue doing it.Unless of course there was some kind of objective standard you can appeal to that necessarily applies to me.

    When you simply make up any nonsense you want without regard for truth

    Accout for the universal standard of truth you are appealing to.

    you are bound to contradict other falsehoods you’ve previously drivelled.

    Account for the absolute, invariant, immaterial, universal standard of logic and reason you use to call it a contradiction and explain why it necessarily applies to my argument.Also account for this universal objective standard of truth you are appealing to in order to call my statements falsehoods.

  707. #707 KnockGoats
    January 11, 2009

    Before humans evolved,did the laws of logic apply?
    Facilis

    Apply to what?

    the immaterial,invariant, eternal laws of logic.

    We’re still waiting for you to post these. Also, I’m still waiting for a response to my #510.

  708. #708 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @knockGoats

    You have not even attempted to argue that “laws” of logic, reason and mathematics require a source

    My argument is proven by the impossibility of the contrary. Posit a contrary and I will show you.

    You have simply asserted that they do, and that it is God. Your failure to provide an argument simply exposes your intellectual and moral bankruptcy.

    My argument is supported by the impossibility of the contrary as I have proven time and time again in this tread.Also account for the immaterial,invariant,objective laws of morality that you claim I am bankrupt of and explain why they necessarily apply to me.
    .

    laws of logic are universally agreed in all respects
    I never claimed that.I claimed they hold true for everyone, even if they disagreed (hence they are objective and universal). Do you believe the laws of logic are not universal? If so your logic does not necessarily apply to my argument.

    Logic, reason and mathematics have application only when there are beings capable of formulating propositions that can be true of false, accurate or inaccurate.

    So before humans existed, did the laws of logic apply or not apply?

  709. #709 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    If you really are going to go down this route we should first agree that some kind of God does exist and atheism is false.

    Ah, now I see the problem. A fallacious statement for Facilis. God doesn’t exist, and that has to be the default position until god is proven. Start working on your logical proof, along with the physical evidence to back up your delusions.

  710. #710 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @Wowbagger

    Methinks he’s been hitting a few apologists’ websites for ideas

    Not exactly websites. The library.

    and found this particularly nonsensical one – which the original author no doubt touted as ‘irrefutable’ – and dragged it back here imagining he’d render us dumbstruck and claim victory for Jesus.

    That’s exactly what is happening now. See how no-one here is able to account for the absolute ,immaterial,invariant,eternal laws of logic!!

    I still think we need a dictionary link for words such as ‘bigot’ and ‘intolerant’ – it would have come in very handy during crackergate.

    Also account for the immaterial,invariant,objective laws of morality by which you claim these things are morally wrong.

    I doubt you’ll get an answer to any question that hasn’t already been asked by someone else on the blog/forum facilis is appropriating his arguments from – someone, obviously, who is fond of (as John Morales pointed out) Clarkian presuppositionalism.

    What I read was more from the Van Tillian school but these arguments go all the way back to Kant. I love this apprach because it literally shows how illogical atheism really is and you cannot argue with it. I mean everyone uses logic.

    Heck, he couldn’t deal with the assertion that my Sideshow Bob figurine was just as capable of being responsible for everything he attributed to his god;

    You seriously didn’t expect me to deal with that did you? If you won’t tell me how you account for logic and reason and resort to jokes I don’t see any point in debating you. You are just being illogical and proud of it.

  711. #711 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @Redhead answer my question.
    For example, do you know the law of non-contradiction?(google it if you don’t know).
    Did this law hold before humans evolved?

  712. #712 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, your either put up the information we ask for, like your definition of absolute logic (no claim, define it), or it’s time for you to shut up and go away. You are making an ass of yourself.

  713. #713 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    You seriously didn’t expect me to deal with that did you? If you won’t tell me how you account for logic and reason and resort to jokes I don’t see any point in debating you. You are just being illogical and proud of it.

    How is saying a magic sky daddy is the giver of logic any less absurd than a Sideshow Bob figurine?

  714. #714 Zarquon
    January 11, 2009

    The ‘laws’ of logic are just generalisations of the observed regularities of the universe. There doesn’t need to be anything outside to impose this, the universe is inherently regular (but complex).

  715. #715 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @Matt

    Facilis, If you are honestly seeking to knowledge and seriously want to know what a non-foundationalist (non-Platonist, non-divine command) account of logic, I am told than Quine is the guy to look up (I confess I have not read him myself, only the précises in reference books) .
    I’ll check it out when I’m finished with what I’m reading now.Thanks!!

  716. #716 KnockGoats
    January 11, 2009

    Without God it would not be possible to account for anything. – Facilis

    We’re still waiting for you to attempt to argue this. Since science and mathematics make no mention of God, and account for a good deal, I’d be intrigued to know how you will go about it, if I didn’t know you won’t, because you can’t.

    What is the point of simply repeating your empty assertions again and again, without attempting to support them? Do you really think that mere repetition is going to convince anyone?

  717. #717 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, I am not the one who must answer questions. You are the one making the claim, and the burden is upon you to prove yourself right by showing all your definitions, then the logic to your end. You are not doing that, and until you do so you have nothing. You have proven nothing, merely made an assertion. Start proving.

  718. #718 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    It looks like I’ve pretty soundly refuted you guys
    btw if anyone wants to see a simplified form of the argument you can visit this excellent site
    http://proofthatgodexists.org/

  719. #719 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    The laws of logic are a reflection of the consistent, absolute ,objective ,universal,invariant ,unchanging nature of God. What is so hard to get?

    Why does God just happen to be that way yet the universe requires a logic giver? You can’t have it both ways (do you like it both ways?) either the universe can just have the laws of logic as constants, or God can’t. You can’t have one and not the other, you are violating your own principles here.

    I love logical fallacy flowcharts because they prove the existence of the absolute,universal, immaterial, objective,invariant laws of logic and reason (which atheists cannot account for).

    You keep saying that, but how is it any different from a creationist saying that atheists can’t account for the origin of life therefore Goddidit? You are placing a God Of The Gaps, and a foolish one at that. You are violating the principles of your own argument. Pathetic little godbot with no substance to his argument.

  720. #720 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis the fallacious argument: I posit god exists, therefor god exits. End of argument.

    You need much, much more than that, only starting without positing god.

  721. #721 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    It looks like I’ve pretty soundly refuted you guys

    What drugs are you on man, you haven’t even proved your point. just made idiotic assertions.

  722. #722 Zarquon
    January 11, 2009

    Logic supravenes God, since without logic there’s nothing that can be determined about God – not even that God is the author of logic. Therefore, you stand refuted Facilis(2).

  723. #723 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    It looks like I’ve pretty soundly refuted you guys

    Facilis needs to check into a doctor, he’s delusional!

  724. #724 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @KnockGoats
    Mathematics presupposes the existence of absolute, universal , objective, immaterial and invariant laws of mathemtics as well as the existence of absolute, universal , objective, immaterial and invariant laws of logic and reason as well as a standard of absolute truth and the uniformity of nature, none of which can be accounted for apart from God.
    Science presupposes uniformity of nature ,induction as the existence of absolute, universal , objective, immaterial and invariant laws of logic and reason and a standard of absolute truth, which cannot be accountted for apart from God.
    Do you think you can account forinduction and the uniformity of nature and induction?

  725. #725 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    which cannot be accountted for apart from God.

    Science has no need for god, either in logic or explanation. What a fool, Facilis the fallacious.

  726. #726 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    After all that weaselling by Facilis to be allowed to present a philosophical argument in place of evidence,

    my evidence is the existence of logic.It shows that the atheists are deluded when they deny God and use his logic. Im just the psychiatrist trying to wake you guys up from your delusion

    the best he (she?)can come up with is “the existence of logic proves God.” What an anticlimax.

    do you use logic? Account for the laws of logic and reason please

  727. #727 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, you have proven nothing, merely made a false assertion. If that is your proof, you failed big time. Otherwise, show your work or shut up. You are embarrassing yourself with idiocy

  728. #728 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    Science presupposes uniformity of nature ,induction as the existence of absolute, universal , objective, immaterial and invariant laws of logic and reason and a standard of absolute truth, which cannot be accountted for apart from God.

    You keep saying that, but you are not giving any reason to why the universe cannot just be. Asserting that the universe needs a logic giver but not God is like asserting that God is both moral and a giver of morality. You are violating your own principles in argument, and for someone who is basing their argument on logic, you are doing a hell of a job to misuse it.

  729. #729 KnockGoats
    January 11, 2009

    y argument is supported by the impossibility of the contrary as I have proven time and time again in this tread.

    That’s a bare-faced lie. You have proved nothing, because you have not even put forward an argument.

    Also account for the immaterial,invariant,objective laws of morality that you claim I am bankrupt of and explain why they necessarily apply to me.

    There are no such laws. That does not, of course, mean that morality is arbitrary: the standards we adopt have real-world consequences for others. Example: your dishonesty is annoying people.

    See how no-one here is able to account for the absolute ,immaterial,invariant,eternal laws of logic!

    You have not shown there are such laws. If you claim there are, you should surely be able to post them here for us to admire. You mentioned at one point the law of non-contradiction. As I’ve pointed out above, there are logics that do not include this law (paraconsistent logics). I have also accounted for the source of the laws of logic and reason that we use in various circumstances: our experience of reasoning both successfully and unsuccessfully. And I’m still waiting for a response to my #510.

    Facilis, any stupid little turd can go on and on making the same ridiculous assertions, refusing to back them up with argument or even elucidate them, and ignoring points made against them and questions about them, as you have. You’re not impressing anyone but yourself.

  730. #730 Zarquon
    January 11, 2009

    Science presupposes uniformity of nature,
    induction as the existence of absolute, universal , objective, immaterial and invariant laws of logic and reason and a standard of absolute truth, which cannot be accountted for apart from God.

    No, science observes a regular universe and uses mathematics, which is a language for describing patterns and regularities, to generalise observations. This doesn’t require a god, or gods, that’s a complete non-sequitur.

  731. #731 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @Redhead
    Account for the universal, objective, invariant ,immaterial laws of logic by which you call my arguments fallacious

  732. #732 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @Kel
    If you wsh to posit that logic and reason are just constants of the universe, I can argue against it if that is what you believe about logic. But that’s only if it is what you believe.

  733. #733 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    I think facilis has watched Beetlejuice too many times. It seems he’s under the impression that if he makes the same assertion often enough that it will come true.

  734. #734 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, you haven’t defined your terms, but it is not up to me to disprove you, but up to you to prove your assertions. Since you haven’t sufficiently defined your terms, you aren’t even up to step one

  735. #735 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, you demonstrating your logic starts with defining your terms and postulates. So far, nothing. Then you argue to demonstrate the conclusions. So far nothing. All we have seen is your conclusions. You need to get with the program or go away.

  736. #736 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @KnockGoats
    In response to 510. “Contingent” means things that could not have been or could have been different.

  737. #737 Zarquon
    January 11, 2009

    The ‘laws’ of logic are abstractions. They don’t ‘exist’ in reality, only when they are instantiated in the language processing of human brains. Patterns of regular behaviour of matter exist, it’s what matter does. Those patterns can be generalised to abstract rules of logic e.g. this tree is this tree == law of identity, a rock is not a tree == law of non-contradiction. Once people worked out rules for making patterns they could generalise them and devise the language of mathematics to describe, based on arbitrary axioms, lots of arbitrary patterns. Some of those patterns turn out to be useful for describing the patterns of behaviour of matter.
    None of this requires a god to accomplish.

  738. #738 'Tis Himself
    January 11, 2009

    It looks like I’ve pretty soundly refuted you guys

    The reason why Dawkins called his book The God Delusion is because the goddists are deluded.

  739. #739 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    If you wsh to posit that logic and reason are just constants of the universe, I can argue against it if that is what you believe about logic. But that’s only if it is what you believe.

    That’s a belief? It seems nothing more than a parsimonious conclusion from the argument you presented. You are violating your own principles, you are making logical fallacy after logical fallacy, your position is circular and you are special pleading for the conclusions you come to. Quite simply you are offering nothing at all to even suggest I should take your deity any more seriously than Wowbagger’s Sideshow Bob Figurine. In fact, I’d be more inclined to take Wowbagger’s suggestion on reality as he can show the figurine exists.

    It does not matter what I believe, and it’s odd that it’s only now after hundreds of posts that you’ve even bothered to ask. And you haven’t really asked, have you? You’ve put an ultimatum on me that either you are challenging my real beliefs or you won’t bother to provide a rationale for your own assertion. Could it simply be that I simply do not know or pretend to know answers for questions that are beyond the scope of our own reality, and that playing philosophical mindgames to maintain that certainty is mental masturbation.

    So what do I believe? That humans have a limited capacity for understanding. That anyone who says they have insight into what is beyond that understanding is deluding themselves. That to play with mental constructs and then impose them on reality is misrepresenting both reality and the nature of philosophy. And that you are full of shit in your baseless assertions! So what do I believe? I believe you shouldn’t waste your time trying to prove the existence of a God that for the most part has been part of the mental mindfuck that is the holy trinity by saying that the universe represents the logic that is born with God.

  740. #740 DaveL
    January 11, 2009

    It looks like I’ve pretty soundly refuted you guys

    What are you, some kind of Monty Python parody of theism? First with the Banana Sketch and now with The Black Knight?

  741. #741 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    There are no such laws…[of morality].

    Good. Then I should be able to lie as much as I want(if I wanted to)

    You have not shown there are such laws. If you claim there are, you should surely be able to post them here for us to admire.

    I provided the examples of the law of non-contradiction and the law of identity.

    You mentioned at one point the law of non-contradiction. As I’ve pointed out above, there are logics that do not include this law (paraconsistent logics).

    Do you use paraconsistent logic to reason?
    Can paraconsistent logics both include and exclude the law of non-contradiction? If no ,why not.

    I have also accounted for the source of the laws of logic and reason that we use in various circumstances: our experience of reasoning both successfully and unsuccessfully.

    When we reasoned successful and unsuccessfully , by which absolute standard of logic and reason were we able to tell we were correct and incorrect? By what absolute standard of truth were we able to tell if we were correct? Before humans evolved, could the a dinosaur be green and not green at the same time and in the same place(law of non-contradiction)?Why or why not?

  742. #742 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, still no formal argument. Repeating yourself is a sign of delusion. You have nothing but a circular argument: I posit god exits, therefore he exists. So I can posit god exist. Therefor…..We don’t have to prove you wrong, but you have to prove yourself right. Absolute failure to date, since we must take your word that the postulates, definitions, and logic is there. Show your work or go away.

  743. #743 KnockGoats
    January 11, 2009

    Before humans evolved,did the laws of logic apply?
    Facilis

    Apply to what?

    the immaterial,invariant, eternal laws of logic.

    We’re still waiting for you to post these. Also, I’m still waiting for a response to my #510.

  744. #744 Matt Heath
    January 11, 2009
    There are no such laws…[of morality].

    Good. Then I should be able to lie as much as I want(if I wanted to)

    Yes the lack of completely universal, Platonic laws of morality does indeed imply that there is no morality… to someone with very limited intelligence and imagination.

    Here’s a little analogy for you – language. A language (say English) doesn’t have universal laws from above. It only has the partial rules cobbled together over centuries of people trying to communicate. This is what keeps academic linguists in business.

    And yet “The cat sat on the mat” is still a grammatical sentence in English while “Sat mat cat the on” and “iugsbjku %%%%6 huhj hjjuij k” aren’t.

    the law of non-contradiction and the law of identity

    If these where in fact ultimately empirical (as Quine would have it) , if they where “mere” observations about what seems to be true about the relationships of things in the universe that happen to have been good observations (and upon the acceptance of which we have built most other parts of our understanding), if all this were the case how would the universe seem different to us?

  745. #745 KnockGoats
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis@717,

    I followed your link – I’ve actually seen this sophistical rubbish before. There are numerous errors, but I’ll mention only one. I followed the path I was evidently meant to follow, despite the fact that most of the choices presented were false dichotomies, and cam to the penultimate page. Here I encountered the following statement:

    “Only in a universe governed by God can universal, immaterial, unchanging laws exist.”

    This was just baldly asserted. No attempt was made to argue for it. It is, in fact, rather obviously false. There is nothing logically difficult about the conception of a universe consisting only of mathematical objects – say, all those the existence of which follows from a certain set of axioms and rules of inference. No God. There would be regularities in the relationships between these objects that would be universal, immaterial and unchanging – although of course there would be nothing and no-one there to notice them.

    You have made the absurd claim that the proof of the statement above lies in the contradictions that follow from any alternative. Alternatives have been offered, and you have not shown the contradictions. However, let us suppose you had. You would still not have moved any way at all towards a proof, because doing so requires that you show that all possible alternatives imply contradictions.

    Now present an argument with some real content, or a clarification of your claims, or a response to some of the questions you’ve been asked, or else piss off.

  746. #746 Matt Heath
    January 11, 2009

    me @743: where->were

    Danny, this is impossible. Science does not deal with god, and therefore can never find god. Period. End of story.

    Nerd, I don’t actually buy this. It’s sensitive to the definition of “God” admittedly but I think it’s possible to imagine hypothetical universes which

    1)based on what we’ve seen so far look like this one

    2) contain something that we would reasonably say was “God” (say, it is enough like what people mean when they say “God” that, while they are wrong about the details, it is clear that out of all the things in the universe they mean that one)

    3) This god can be detected by science.

    For example, imagine we found a big tyrant monster living in space with a planet factory, the blue-prints for Earth and a diary explaining how he messed us about with a snake and an apple, and then got bored, fucked off and faked up a load of shit to make it look like the world didn’thave a creator. I’d say that spacedick was God.

  747. #747 KnockGoats
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis,
    Sorry it was my #511 not #510. Now, as I asked there, why do contingent things require causes, and why is God not a contingent thing?

    Do you use paraconsistent logic to reason? Can paraconsistent logics both include and exclude the law of non-contradiction? If no ,why not.

    I don’t use them as far as I’m aware – but logicians do. You can learn about them simply by googling “paraconsistent logics” – don’t expect me to do your research for you. The point of mentioning them is simply to demonsrtate that the law of noncontradiction is not as universal and unquestionable as you evidently believed.

    When we reasoned successful and unsuccessfully , by which absolute standard of logic and reason were we able to tell we were correct and incorrect?

    Not “correct” and “incorrect” but “successful” and “unsuccessful”. Those modes of reasoning that led people to conclusions that they perceived to be wrong were dropped (at least by the people who formulated laws of logic and reasoning – not by fuckwits like you).

    Before humans evolved, could the a dinosaur be green and not green at the same time and in the same place(law of non-contradiction)?Why or why not?

    You don’t even understand the law of non-contradiction, do you? It states that a proposition cannot be both true and false. Within a logic taking the law of non-contradiction as an axiom, or in which it can be validly derived, the statement:
    “Dinosaur d was green at time t
    cannot be both true and false. Whether time t happens to be now or before humans evolved is immaterial.

  748. #748 KnockGoats
    January 11, 2009

    It’s worth asking where Facilis’ approach would lead, if we let it. Since he has no argument for the existence of God, and indeed his ideology does not allow him to argue except on the basis that his interlocutors accept the existence of God in advance, but since people in general (and by no means just atheists) will not accept this sort of nonsense voluntarily, it ends in heresy trials, torture, and burning people alive.

  749. #749 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Matt, I’m not saying science might not acknowledge god or an alien creator if they tripped over it. But science, as an endeavor, is not going to go and deliberately look for god, which is job of theologians. An astronomer asking NSF for money so he can buy time on the Hubble Space Telescope, would get laughed at and rejected they were going to look for god. Even if funded by say the Templeton group, they most likely wouldn’t get time on the scope since they would be lowest priority compared to all the other scientists doing real science.

    Danny seems to think because he believes in god, it is up to science to show evidence for his god. That is simply the wrong idea. It is up to him to find the evidence.

  750. #750 SEF
    January 11, 2009

    @ Facilis #702:

    It also shows me that you guys are unable to defend atheism and have to posit a God for logic to make sense.

    + #718:

    It looks like I’ve pretty soundly refuted you guys

    No, it just shows us (again and again) how dishonest you are. When someone is as dishonest as you are they can have superpowers or have done anything they want in their imagination. It doesn’t mean they’ve really got or done what they claim.

  751. #751 Matt Heath
    January 11, 2009

    Nerd, I know. I’m developing a slightly annoying habit of arguing over details with people with whom I basically agree. The thing is, those sorts of discussions are actually able to move understanding on slightly. Arguing big stuff is repetitve (most ideas about the big stuff have been had) and arguing details with people with whom you disagree about every detail is very time consuming.

  752. #752 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Matt, we have too many annoying posters like Facilis and Danny who can’t seem to get the point. Personally, I sometimes take a black/white position with them that I wouldn’t with the regulars, who understand shades of gray. So I may have overstated the case a little with Danny, and I sometimes get called out on it. But, you had a valid point, and I attempted to address it. As you say, I think we are in close agreement.

  753. #753 Feynmaniac
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis,

    absolute, universal , objective, immaterial and invariant laws of logic

    Drinking game! Every time facilis types this or some variation of it take a shot!

    The evidence is the impossibility of the contrary. Without God it would not be possible to account for anything.

    Again, you keep asserting this but you haven’t shown it. Repeating it over and over is not proof.

    And I would also like to note to all those people who posit entities like Zeus,plastic Slideshow bob and FSM that these things are made of material (Sorry but spaghetti is necessarily made of material)

    The spaghetti of the FSM is immaterial. This is the theological principle known as transpaghettiation. Also, how did the Romans manage to nail an immaterial being to a cross?

    Oh and it’s Sideshow Bob. Don’t you know your Simpsons?!

    If I answer your questions about the Greek Gods and refute them you will probaly just posit another false God for me to refute and continue positing other Gods

    Well save time and show that ALL beings that can be postulated to be immaterial, invisible etc. are false except the Judeo-Christian God. Bet you can’t do it.

    Good. Then I should be able to lie as much as I want(if I wanted to)

    You already defended the murder of 42 children for making fun of a guy for being bald. Quite frankly, lying would be a step up.

  754. #754 phantomreader42
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis the fallacious whined @ #731:

    Account for the universal, objective, invariant ,immaterial laws of logic by which you call my arguments fallacious

    What “universal, objective, invariant ,immaterial laws of logic”? YOU are the one who keeps babbling about such things. But you don’t dare list the laws in question. Nor do you dare define the properties of your god. Because you know if you give up your precious weasel room and actually define your terms, even YOU will be forced to admit that your arguments are a worthless steaming pile of unsupported circular bullshit.

    I predicted this in #695, that you would not dare define your terms and would simply keep blathering sophistic bullshit. You’ve proved me right, and soundly refuted yourself. It’s not just a flesh would, you’ve lost all your limbs and you just won’t admit it. Your threat to bite all our legs off is just laughable.

  755. #755 Owlmirror
    January 11, 2009

    facilis @#542:

    Actually, God hates rationality and loves stupidity.

    1 Corinthians 1:19-23 : For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
    Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?

    God here is talking about the foolish secularist “reason” that refuses to acknowlege God as the source of rationality. God has indeed revealed to us how foolish it is in his word. It is also proven by all the atheists here unable to account for the invariant, objective ,universal laws of logic in their worldview.

    In addition to my refutation of this nonsense being God speaking @#578, I will show exactly how wrong this is in other ways.

    First of all, Paul of Tarsus speaks of “the wisdom of the world”. The original Greek is “?????? ??? ??????”; sophian tou kosmou. The wisdom of the kosmos.

    What does “kosmos” mean in Greek? It doesn’t just mean “this world”; Paul could have said “aion”. “Kosmos” means order. The world considered as an orderly and rational place. And do I really need to point out that “sophian” is a grammatical form of sophos, the root of philosophy?

    1 Corinth 1:21-23 :For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
    For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:
    But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness

    Look at the first part of 1:21 : the world by wisdom knew not God, “??? ???? ? ?????? ??? ??? ?????? ??? ????”; ouk egn? o kosmos dia t?s sophias ton theon. You claim this means ‘secularist reason” that refuses to acknowlege God as the source of rationality’

    Little problem for you, ignoranimus. The world at the time that Paul was speaking was not secularist. In fact, it met exactly the criterion that you demand! The Greek schools of philosophy, with their sources in Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, did indeed teach, via different forms of the cosmological argument that God did indeed exist, and would even have agreed with God being the source of all rationality!

    Oops.

    So, what the hell did Paul mean when he said that “the world by wisdom knew not God”, given that the Greek philosophers had indeed used wisdom to reason about their orderly world, and inferred that God existed and was orderly and rational?

    Paul meant the bloody obvious: Since the Greeks with their wisdom had not found God in a human who incarnated himself and was killed, his God, who was incarnated and killed, was not the God of order and reason that the Greeks had found.

    Paul’s God hated the Jews, despite having come from the Jews, and hated the Greeks, with their God of wisdom and reason and rationality. Paul’s God did stupid things for no reason other than to harm those who sought order and reason through wisdom; Paul’s God did things that Jews found blasphemous for no other reason than to harm the Jews.

    Paul’s God — your God — was malevolent and insane.

    QED

  756. #756 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    @kel
    The problems with logic being in the “nature of the universe” are very much the same hat I pointed out with platonism earlier. Plus the universe by its nature is material and changes.

  757. #757 Patricia, OM
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis you are no longer even mildly amusing.

  758. #758 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    The problems with logic being in the “nature of the universe” are very much the same hat I pointed out with platonism earlier. Plus the universe by its nature is material and changes.

    No the problem is that you view logic as something beyond a human construct in order to understand the universe, and the problem with your argument is that you are saying the universe requires something that God does not. Your entire argument is just absurd, made even more so that you are a Christian. If you were a Hindu then I’d see it being at least consistent, though I still say Sideshow Bob is a better explanation because Wowbagger can show that the figurine exists.

  759. #759 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 11, 2009

    Oh,Patricia! When was he ever amusing?

  760. #760 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    The problems with logic being in the “nature of the universe” are very much the same hat I pointed out with platonism earlier. Plus the universe by its nature is material and changes.

    If it’s material and changes, then why does it need the laws to begin with?

  761. #761 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis’ argument in a nutshell: “Logic exists therefore Jesus rose on the 3rd day and if you don’t believe that you will spend an eternity in torture. It sounds illogical, but it only sounds that way because logic exists.”

  762. #762 Patricia, OM
    January 11, 2009

    His stupidity amused me in the beginning…but then twirling and ginger ale amuse me too. *wicked smirk*

  763. #763 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, still no formal argument.

    I did put forth my argument many times before but let me quote it here again for you-
    “Humans reason. In order to reason they use laws of logic. These laws of logic and reason are universal (apply to everyone), objective (not dependent on human opinion or conventions), immaterial (not made of matter) and invariant( do not change). God is universal,objective,immaterial and invariant and he is the necessary pre-condition for these laws of logic and reason to exist. This is proven by the impossibility of the contrary. Try to account for the laws of logic apart from God and I will show you.”
    Later in the thread for examples I used the law of identity and the law of non-ontradictions as examples of these laws of logic

    Repeating yourself is a sign of delusion.

    denying logic and reason is a sign of delusion

    You have nothing but a circular argument

    by what standard of logic do you call my argument circular? any why are circular arguments not allowed in your worldview?

    We don’t have to prove you wrong, but you have to prove yourself right.

    You have proven me right by your inability to account for the laws of logic apart from God.
    Let me summarise what happened in this thread.
    SEF-suggested platonism. However I have shown this to be wrong.
    knockGoats suggested that humans invented logic. However he also believes that logic existed 65 million years ago during the time of dinosaurs( and before humans). So knockGoats refutes himself
    Matt Heath-suggested that logic was an empirical proposition. This has to do more with its epistemic status than what metaphysically underpins the laws of logic and makes them hold true.However it begs the question of how he knows that the reasoning he used to form that proposition and the empirical data he used is accurate.

    I have shown that people here are unable to account for the laws of logic. Thus my argument stands and I have shown atheism is illogical.

  764. #764 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 11, 2009

    Well, ginger ale tastes good. And twirling can burn off the calories from drinking the ale. As well as providing a pleasant dizzy feeling. Dancing till my feet don’t touch the ground. I lose my mind and dance forever.

  765. #765 Facilis
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, still no formal argument.

    I did put forth my argument many times before but let me quote it here again for you-
    “Humans reason. In order to reason they use laws of logic. These laws of logic and reason are universal (apply to everyone), objective (not dependent on human opinion or conventions), immaterial (not made of matter) and invariant( do not change). God is universal,objective,immaterial and invariant and he is the necessary pre-condition for these laws of logic and reason to exist. This is proven by the impossibility of the contrary. Try to account for the laws of logic apart from God and I will show you.”
    Later in the thread for examples I used the law of identity and the law of non-ontradictions as examples of these laws of logic

    Repeating yourself is a sign of delusion.

    denying logic and reason is a sign of delusion

    You have nothing but a circular argument

    by what standard of logic do you call my argument circular? any why are circular arguments not allowed in your worldview?

    We don’t have to prove you wrong, but you have to prove yourself right.

    You have proven me right by your inability to account for the laws of logic apart from God.
    Let me summarise what happened in this thread.

    SEF

    -suggested platonism. However I have shown this to be wrong.

    knockGoats

    suggested that humans invented logic. However he also believes that logic existed 65 million years ago during the time of dinosaurs( and before humans). So knockGoats refutes himself

    Matt heath

    -suggested that logic was an empirical proposition. This has to do more with its epistemic status than what metaphysically underpins the laws of logic and makes them hold true.However it begs the question of how he knows that the reasoning he used to form that proposition and the empirical data he used is accurate.

    I have shown that people here are unable to account for the laws of logic. Thus my argument stands and I have shown atheism is illogical.

  766. #766 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 11, 2009

    It’s not just a flesh wound, you’ve lost all your limbs and you just won’t admit it. Your threat to bite all our legs off is just laughable.

    For those who didn’t get the reference: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zKhEw7nD9C4

  767. #767 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis, your fallacy starts with trying to describe logic and then shoehorn god into it using similar language. You are presuming god. That makes it a fallacious argument. You can’t presume god to prove god. God shouldn’t exist or come into the argument until all other options have been explored and none have. And a natural explanation will fall out of the explorations, so no god need be invoked. Massive failure of argument at that point. Nothing further is of interest. Go back to school and learn how to put philosophical/mathematical arguments together.

  768. #768 Janine, Bitter Friend
    January 11, 2009

    You have proven me right by your inability to account for the laws of logic apart from God.

    You know, you can replace the word logic with any noun and it remain just as correct.

    You have proven me right by your inability to account for the laws of logic apart from Russell’s Teapot.

    Therefore god/Russell’s Teapot.

    suggested that humans invented logic. However he also believes that logic existed 65 million years ago during the time of dinosaurs( and before humans). So knockGoats refutes himself

    I have to concede to Patricia. Now that’s comedy.

  769. #769 Patricia, OM
    January 11, 2009

    Emmet, are you going to get icky again? You’re so naughty.

  770. #770 Patricia, OM
    January 11, 2009

    Janine, watch your pretty dancing slippers! Emmet might drop something disgusting on the floor.

  771. #771 Owlmirror
    January 11, 2009

    “Humans reason. In order to reason they use laws of logic. These laws of logic and reason are universal (apply to everyone), objective (not dependent on human opinion or conventions), immaterial (not made of matter) and invariant( do not change). God is universal,objective,immaterial and invariant and he is the necessary pre-condition for these laws of logic and reason to exist. This is proven by the impossibility of the contrary. Try to account for the laws of logic apart from God and I will show you.”

    But you have not shown anything. You have merely repeated it.

    And you have ignored arguments that demonstrate that even if it is conceded that “God” … “is universal,objective,immaterial and invariant and he is the necessary pre-condition for these laws of logic and reason to exist”, it cannot be the case that “God” is a person, because logical and rational people communicate clearly and directly, and God does not. You have ignored arguments that Christianity was founded as conceiving of a God that was directly opposed to logic and reason.

    Thus, your own arguments do not stand to reason.

    QED

  772. #772 SEF
    January 11, 2009

    SEF-suggested platonism.

    No, I didn’t. You’re lying again. I pointed out that the Platonic stuff about which [u]you[/u] were already talking (with someone else?) had long been known to be rubbish (at least, long known to the well-educated, anyway).

  773. #773 SEF
    January 11, 2009

    How odd. I accidentally managed to flip between HTML and BBcode within the space of one short post!

  774. #774 Owlmirror
    January 11, 2009

    SEF

    -suggested platonism. However I have shown this to be wrong.

    Your “refutation” was this:

    1)If reason is merely a platonic form , how can it govern our minds and thoughts (almost like some kind of personal agent)?
    2)How can these platonic forms communicate themselves to us so we can be certain of these truths?

    Yet we can reword this:

    1)If reason is merely divine, how can it govern our minds and thoughts?
    2)How can this divinity communicate to us so we can be certain of these truths?

    Which just gets us back where we started: Your refusal or inability to demonstrate that reason is in fact from God.

  775. #775 Feynmaniac
    January 11, 2009

    facilis,

    This is proven by the impossibility of the contrary. Try to account for the laws of logic apart from God and I will show you

    This is simply an argument from ignorance. Let’s just say for the sake of argument we can’t explain where the laws of logic comes from without God. That still doesn’t mean it cannot be explained without God.

    Also, your argument is basically: “magic man done it”. Again, how is this more valid than “the Greek gods done it”?

  776. #776 Wowbagger
    January 11, 2009

    facilis’ dodge attempt at a response to my claim that his ‘blah, laws of logic, blah blah’ babbling is just as able to have come from my Sideshow Bob figurine as his imaginary god:

    You seriously didn’t expect me to deal with that did you? If you won’t tell me how you account for logic and reason and resort to jokes I don’t see any point in debating you. You are just being illogical and proud of it.

    I’m growing fat on the delicious irony, facilis.

    And it’s far less of a joke than you are; I’ll admit it’s facetious, but that doesn’t allow you to dismiss it out of hand.

    And I would also like to note to all those people who posit entities like Zeus,plastic Slideshow bob and FSM that these things are made of material (Sorry but spaghetti is necessarily made of material)

    Two problems with this: a) why does the materiality of the being prevent it from acting on immaterial things, and b) why is Zeus any more ‘made of material’ than Yahweh?

    So, try again. Exactly why is my claim that the Sideshow Bob figurine (or Zeus, or the FSM) is responsible for logic and reason any more illogical than your god being responsible? Until you can explain (actually explain, not just write ‘because I say so’) why you are allowed to make the claim and we’re not then, well, you lose.

  777. #777 Kem
    January 11, 2009

    The first one who mentioned platonism was Ken Cope, as any fool can see by searching this web page itself for the word “Platonism”. This is not only not rocket science, this is as simple as typing a few characters.

    And facilis still misattributed the line about platonism to Kel (at first), and to SEF (later).

    Facilis, if you can’t be bothered to read the words in front of you, or learn how to use web browser, you really cannot be trusted to reason about reason.

  778. #778 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 11, 2009

    Facilis the Incompetent Bullshitter ejaculated:

    God is universal,objective,immaterial and invariant and he is the necessary pre-condition for these laws of logic and reason to exist. This is proven by the impossibility of the contrary.

    The idea that a supernatural entity is a precondition for the existence of modus ponens ranks amongst the most vacuous and stupid gobbledegook that I’ve ever heard articulated by a primate with opposable thumbs.

  779. #779 God
    January 11, 2009

    The idea that a supernatural entity is a precondition for the existence of modus ponens ranks amongst the most vacuous and stupid gobbledegook that I’ve ever heard articulated by a primate with opposable thumbs.

    Oook!

  780. #780 Satan
    January 11, 2009

    For those lacking fluency in Orangutan, He said “I entirely agree!”

    I think the evidence that God is the opposite of reasonable is in Genesis itself, where we see that God creates light before creating the sun, and in the second chapter, does it all over again, but in a different order.

    Now that was a Gnostic fire drill…

    Oh, and there’s the small matter that I get the blame for every little thing that goes wrong. That isn’t reasonable, now is it?

  781. #781 KnockGoats
    January 11, 2009

    However he also believes that logic existed 65 million years ago during the time of dinosaurs( and before humans). So knockGoats refutes himself Facilis

    Look, fuckwit, try and grasp at least one point. You have to distinguish between the time a statement is made, and the time it refers to. If you make a statement now, it is assessed according to the logic that has been developed from human experience of reasoning, whether that statement is about now, about the future, or about the past – even the past before there was anyone to make statements. That’s really not too difficult, now is it? Similarly, you make it in a language that human beings have developed. To be consistent, you ought to be claiming that we can’t say anything about dinosaurs at all, because the languages we use didn’t exist at the time the dinosaurs did.

  782. #782 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 11, 2009

    Sorry, I missed this steaming heap of bunny beans:

    It seems obvious to me that you are making a kind of category error. These things (unicorns ,flyng teapots..etc) are things formed by and cntingent on the universe. When the theist leprechaunist makes a claim of god leprechauns he is claiming the universe is contingent on God leprechauns.

    Equally valid. Equally obscurantist. Equally absurd.

    There is no categorical difference between supernatural entities held to exist, since they cannot be differentiated by empirical means, only by make-believe properties; any such property, which can be ascribed to one supernatural entity ? including the obscurantist and vacuous nonsense of having the universe be contingent upon it ? can freely be ascribed to any other, since there is no grounding in reality.

  783. #783 God
    January 11, 2009

    Oh, and there’s the small matter that I get the blame for every little thing that goes wrong. That isn’t reasonable, now is it?

    It is if I say it is…

  784. #784 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    And facilis still misattributed the line about platonism to Kel (at first), and to SEF (later).

    Maybe facilis is having an identity crisis too…

  785. #785 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 11, 2009

    Janine, watch your pretty dancing slippers! Emmet might drop something disgusting on the floor.

    It couldn’t be any more disgusting than the intellectual santorum dribbling from Facilis’s tumescent frontal lobe.

  786. #786 Owlmirror
    January 11, 2009

    I missed this steaming heap of bunny beans:

    Heh.

    Are you sure you don’t mean “rotten Easter bunny eggs”?

  787. #787 Wowbagger
    January 11, 2009

    Emmet Caulfield wrote:

    …ranks amongst the most vacuous and stupid gobbledegook that I’ve ever heard articulated by a primate with opposable thumbs.

    You might be giving facilis a little too much credit there – it’s quite easy to cut and paste blocks of text without the need for thumbs.

    Anyway, would is it even possible to say that ‘logic’, as such, actually doesn’t exist, other than as an abstract construct for describing or explaining how something works? Much like mathematics?

    It’s not like gravity, that exists because of something (and which there can be an absence of) – it’s just the name we’ve given to how we demonstrate or analyse how something works.

    To go back to the mathematics analogy: just because we call something ‘geometry’ doesn’t mean it didn’t exist before we thought of a name for it; the sum of all the degrees in triangle* will still be 180o whether we look at it or not. It doesn’t make any difference to geometry.

    I’m just getting tired of facilis’ nonsensical argument, which I know is wrong but am not capable of explaining (to my own satisfaction) exactly why.

    *No doubt there’s some exception to this in a branch of wacky mathematics I know nothing about; if there’s someone reading this who just has to be pedantic about it, knock yourself out.

  788. #788 Jadehawk
    January 11, 2009

    what an utterly stupid argument this is… though hilariously enough facilis is right that “logic” and “god” are similar and related.

    after all, they are both concepts that have started with concrete observations, have been incorporated into language (i.e. became symbolic rather than object-based), and have from there developed into the abstract:

    everyone can see that spheres are never cubes, and cubes are never spheres –> something cannot have two contradicting traits –> Aristotle’s law of noncontradiction

    when people get angry with me, they sometimes break my stuff out of spite –> a lightningbolt from heaven destroyed my house, so heaven must be angry with me –> God is real and he punishes you for disobedience!!!!!!

    neither is supernatural and neither is physically real because both are mental constructs derived from real-life observations. it just so happens that “logic” is a far more sturdy and useful concept than “god” (though I wonder what shroedingers cat has to say about the law of noncontradiction :-p)

  789. #789 SEF
    January 11, 2009

    That’s religious nutters through and through: lightning-rod-less, having no grounding in reality. Liable to explode (with the shattering of strained excuses) or burst into flames at any time, damaging anything they touch.

  790. #790 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    by what standard of logic do you call my argument circular? any why are circular arguments not allowed in your worldview?

    This is probably the dumbest comment that facilis has said on here, and if one replaced the word logic with morality it would almost be a carbon copy of the same argument that John Knight made a few months ago. Basically it’s that same top-down approach where the solution is that Jesus died for our sins in order to give us eternal life.

  791. #791 SEF
    January 11, 2009

    No doubt there’s some exception to this in a branch of wacky mathematics I know nothing about

    Spheres aren’t particularly wacky and I’m sure you know something of them really, even if they didn’t immediately come to mind. You live on a world approximating to one, after all. Its spherical triangles (formed from “lines” which are actually arcs of great circles) have angles summing to amounts greater than 180°.

  792. #792 'Tis Himself
    January 11, 2009

    …but then twirling and ginger ale amuse me too. *wicked smirk*

    Having recently reread Terry Pratchett’s Night Watch, I immediately thought of Vimes’ threat of torture:

    “It’s ginger beer time!” roared someone.
    And a watchman ran through with a box of bottles, and disappeared into the rooms beyond.
    There wasn’t much light in here. Ferret cowered against the wall and saw two watchmen unlock the cell next door, drag the shackled occupant upright and out into the cellar and then hustle him around the corner.
    The voices had a slight echo. “Hold him down. Mind his legs!”
    “Right! Let’s have the bottle! Give it a proper shake, otherwise it won’t work!
    “Okay, friend. Anything you want to tell us? Your name? No? Well, it’s like this. Right now, we don’t care a whole lot if you talk or not.”
    There was a loud pop, a hiss and then…a scream, an explosion of agony.

  793. #793 Wowbagger
    January 11, 2009

    Spheres aren’t particularly wacky and I’m sure you know something of them really, even if they didn’t immediately come to mind.

    Well, I know of spheres; their mathematical qualities, however, are a mystery – and will probably remain so. To cope with coming to this site as often as I do I’m having to learn more biology, philosophy and logic than I ever anticipated I would need.

  794. #794 Nerd of Redhead
    January 11, 2009

    [pedant]Only in plane geometry do the angles of a triangle add up to 180 degrees. Any geometry where Euclids fifth postulate doesn’t hold, like the spherical example by SEF, the angles will not add up to 180 degrees except for very small triangles. There is also hyperbolic geometry, where the angles don’t add up to 180 degrees.[/pedant]

  795. #795 Kel
    January 11, 2009

    [pedant]Only in plane geometry do the angles of a triangle add up to 180 degrees. Any geometry where Euclids fifth postulate doesn’t hold, like the spherical example by SEF, the angles will not add up to 180 degrees except for very small triangles. There is also hyperbolic geometry, where the angles don’t add up to 180 degrees.[/pedant]

    But how could that apply unless Jesus died on the cross so that the degrees in a triangle could change? ;)

  796. #796 SEF
    January 11, 2009

    Aw, don’t abandon maths from your self-improvement curriculum so easily. There’s even an obligatory spherical triangle bear-hunt joke/puzzle, which I was sure I’d find on the internet somewhere (though it long precedes it). Unfortunately, Google only seems to be finding me rather bad examples of it at the moment.

  797. #797 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 11, 2009

    Well, I know of spheres; their mathematical qualities, however, are a mystery – and will probably remain so.

    OK, consider a line from the North Pole to the Equator along the Prime Meridian. Now project a line at right angles at both ends eastward. The two projected lines will meet in a right angle on the equator at a longitude of 90° ? you’ve just formed a triangle with three right-angles, which sum to 270°.

  798. #798 Wowbagger
    January 11, 2009

    Gah. I did ask for it, didn’t I?

    Can we go back to discussing the thing my lackluster knowledge of geometry was attempting to serve as a metaphor for? That logic exists whether or not we have a construct for communicating it?

  799. #799 SEF
    January 11, 2009

    The basic components certainly existed before and without humans. It’s just the formalisation of things invented by humans which couldn’t exist beforehand.

    Electrons can enact a simple component of logic without having any apparent intelligence at all. Eg if spin is the same as that of another electron then they can’t occupy the same energy level in an atom together (an example of the Pauli Exclusion Principle). They don’t have to be able to consciously do logic in order to compare quantum number states and reach a conclusion. It comes naturally.

    On a somewhat larger scale (and arising later), individual sponge cells can distinguish “same” from “other” and follow logical rules accordingly.

  800. #800 Emmet Caulfield, OM
    January 11, 2009

    Gah. I did ask for it, didn’t I?

    Yup.

    Can we go back to discussing the thing my lackluster knowledge of geometry was attempting to serve as a metaphor for? That logic exists whether or not we have a construct for communicating it?

    It’s pretty much the same as the old koan, ?If a tree falls in the forest, but nobody is there, does it make a sound??. It is resolved by being precise about definitions. If ?sound? is defined as pressure waves in air, then yes, it makes a sound; if ?sound? is defined as the sensory experience of hearing, there is no such sound. Similarly, taking modus ponens as representative, if you define it as a proof-theoretical syntactic operation, then, no, it didn’t exist when dinosaurs roamed the earth, because there was nobody around to devise the notions of alphabets, well-formed formulae, sentences, and rules of inference. On the other hand, if you define it as the inferential principle that it represents, then it existed and was correct in the Cretaceous. To deny this is to maintain that adding a rock to a pile of three rocks has only made a pile of four rocks since people invented arithmetic.

  801. #801 Wowbagger
    January 11, 2009

    Okay, so I’m on the right track with saying that we didn’t ‘invent’ logic; it’s just the name we use for describing what, for want of a better term, ‘is’. Like maths or science.