Where Do You Go
When There's No High Road
Left To Take?

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Saturday, August 15, 2009

More Dick Than You Can Swallow!

"WHAT'S TO PREVENT US FROM SAYING HITLER WASN'T RIGHT?"


But test and prove all things [until you can recognize] what is good; [to that] hold fast. Abstain from evil [shrink from it and keep aloof from it] in whatever form or whatever kind it may be.
~ 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22

“Faith is one of the world's great evils,
comparable to the smallpox virus
but harder to eradicate.”
~ Richard Dawkins

Religion is the opium of the masses
~ Karl Marx

Obammunism is the Hopium of the Asses
~ Outraged Spleen


Divinyls ~ Science Fiction ~ 1982

It is through the sciences that the secular will come to know the face of GOD
~ Maimonides

Richard Dawkins: The Atheist Evangelist
by Larry Taunton
byFaith Magazine
Issue Number 18, December 2007

[SNIP]

DAWKINS: “Of course I have doubts all the time,” he said, “and I think in a way the word ‘atheism’ is misleading because it suggests that there’s just one alternative, which is God. I’m constantly on the alert for changes of mind, but extremely skeptical that those changes will just happen to be in the direction of embracing a god of Bronze Age camel herders from the Middle East,”

[SNIP]

"What is the objective of your anti-religious campaign?" I asked.

"I think my ultimate goal would be to convert people away from particular religions toward a rationalist skepticism, tinged with … no, that’s too weak," he said, correcting himself, "… glorying in the universe and in life. Yes, I would like people to be converted away from religion to skepticism."

[SNIP]

In September, the Atheist Alliance International (AAI) sponsored a conference in Washington, D.C., featuring Dawkins, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, and Daniel Dennett, among others. The conference sold out. The purpose was to encourage, inform, and unite the unbelieving. Something like a Promise Keepers for atheists—minus singing, crying, and Tony Evans, of course.

[SNIP]

Make no mistake about it: Richard Dawkins is their leader. As the Charles Simonyi Professor for the Public Understanding of Science at arguably the most prestigious university in the world, Dawkins occupies the bully pulpit of science and culture and uses it to maximum effect. That he receives top billing at the AAI conference in D.C. should come as no surprise. Unlike Hitchens, a flamethrower and a mere pundit, or Harris, an upstart graduate student, Dawkins is a fellow of the Royal Society, the author of eight bestsellers, and a highly respected scientist. As one Oxford journalist told me: “Richard Dawkins IS Oxford University.”

[SNIP]

But for all of Dawkins’ sophistication, there seems to be little appreciation of the fact that religious faiths and practices are not monolithic. Dawkins disregards all nuances. To him, all religions are the same—irrational and opposed to the rigors of scientific inquiry. And that is the way Dawkins frames the debate: science vs. religion. We may reasonably translate this as “fact vs. fiction” or “rational vs. irrational.”

[SNIP]

“What defines your morality?” I asked with genuine curiosity.

There was an extended pause as Dawkins considered the question carefully. “Moral philosophic reasoning and a shifting zeitgeist.” He looked off and then continued.

“We live in a society in which, nowadays, slavery is abominated, women are respected, children can’t be abused—all of which is different from previous centuries.”

He leaned forward as he warmed to his subject.

“I’m actually rather interested in the shifting zeitgeist. If you travel anywhere in the Western world, you find a consensus of opinion which is recognizably different from what it was only a matter of a decade or two ago. You and I are both a part of that same zeitgeist, and [as to where] we get our moral outlook, one can almost use phrases like ‘it’s in the air.’”

At this point, perhaps a word of explanation is necessary. Zeitgeistis a German word meaning “spirit of the age.” Dawkins here refers to the prevailing moral climate or mood of a given place or time. We may observe that what constitutes moral or ethical behavior differs from one culture to another; indeed, it may even differ within a given culture. This is not in dispute. The question, rather, is this: should moral standards be based on the societal zeitgeistor should they look beyond it to something else?

I asked an obvious question: “As we speak of this shifting zeitgeist, how are we to determine who’s right? If we do not acknowledge some sort of external [standard], what is to prevent us from saying that the Muslim [extremists] aren’t right?”

“Yes, absolutely fascinating.” His response was immediate. “What’s to prevent us from saying Hitler wasn’t right? I mean, that is a genuinely difficult question. But whatever [defines morality], it’s not the Bible. If it was, we’d be stoning people for breaking the Sabbath.”

[SNIP]

READ IT ALL!

People travel to wonder at the height of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars, and they pass themselves by without wondering.
RICHARD DAWKINS WEB SITE

DICK HEARTS UNCLE CHOM

DAWKINS: "My personal feeling is that understanding evolution led me to atheism"

Show 208: Intelligent Design/ Evolution Debate
This is an audio version of the Firing Line debate held in 1997.
Audio MP3 Podcast 78 minutes long, 18MB.

DEBATE TRANSCRIPT

Intelligent Design Proponents:


William F. Buckley Jr
Columnist and Host
No description is apt enough or even necessary. This man did not descend from an ape!
~ BZ

God and Man at Yale: The Superstitions of "Academic Freedom,"

is a book published in 1951 by William F. Buckley, Jr., who eventually became a leading voice in the American conservative movement in the latter half of the twentieth century.

Buckley wrote the book based on his undergraduate experiences at Yale University. In the book, he criticized Yale and its faculty for forcing liberal ideology on its students. He criticized individual professors by name for their trying to break down students' religious beliefs through their teaching. Buckley also claimed in the book that Yale was denying its students any sense of individualism by forcing them to embrace the growing creed of liberalism.

God and Man at Yale received mixed reviews when it was first published. Many underestimated the ultimate impact that the book and Buckley would have on American society, thinking that it would quickly fade into the background. Quite the opposite happened, as Buckley used it as a sort of launching pad into the public eye. He went on to be an active force in the conservative movement through the political magazine he started, National Review, and his television show Firing Line. The book and its author played a crucial role in tying together the different factions of the arising conservative movement to form a potent political force.

Phillip Johnson Law Professor, Berkeley , Co-Founder Discovery Institute
With the publication of his book "Darwin on Trial" in 1991 he began a second career as one of the foremeost critics of Darwin's Theory of Evolution and its wider sociological and cultural implications. Johnson is one of the leading members of the Intelligent Design movement and has done much to help these ideas gain acceptance and a wider hearing worldwide.

Johnson is best known as one of the founders of the intelligent design movement, principal architect of the Wedge Strategy, author of the Santorum Amendment, and one of the ID movement's most prolific authors. Johnson is co-founder and program advisor of the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture (CSC)

Johnson is the author of several books on evolution, philosophical naturalism, and other cultural issues and speaks extensively around the country. His "Leading Edge" column appears regularly in Touchstone Magazine.
Michael Behe
Biochemist, Lehigh University
American biochemist and intelligent design advocate. Behe is professor of biochemistry at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania and a senior fellow of the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture. He advocates the idea that some structures are too complex at the biochemical level to be adequately explained as a result of evolutionary mechanisms. He has termed this concept "irreducible complexity"


Animation of The Flagellum Motor

The Department of Biological Sciences at Lehigh University has published an official position statement which says "It is our collective position that intelligent design has no basis in science, has not been tested experimentally, and should not be regarded as scientific."
David Berlinski PHD Philosophy, Post Doctorate Fellow of Mathematics and Molecular Biology
Berlinksi is a secular Jew and self-described agnostic, and according to a 2008 Slate magazine profile "a critic, a contrarian, and — by his own admission — a crank."
TWO "HARD SCIENTISTS",

ONE WITH A DEEPLY BIBLICAL BELIEF SYSTEM,

ONE AN AGNOSTIC (Berlinski)

ONE LAW PROFESSOR WITH A DEEPLY BIBLICAL BELIEF SYSTEM,

ONE LEGENDARY WRITER / PUNDIT WITH DEEPLY BIBLICAL BELIEF SYSTEM
Evolution Proponents:

Barry Lynn
~ Americans United for Separation of Church and State
The single greatest threat to church-state separation in America is the movement known as the Religious Right. Organizations and leaders representing this religio-political crusade seek to impose a fundamentalist Christian viewpoint on all Americans through government action"

SEARCH: RICHARD DAWKINS / BARRY LYNN
Eugenie C. Scott
~ National Center for Science Education
The National Center for Science Education (NCSE) defends the teaching of evolution in public schools. We are a nationally-recognized clearinghouse for information and advice to keep evolution in the science classroom and "scientific creationism" out.
NCSE is the only national organization to specialize in this issue.
SEARCH: RICHARD DAWKINS / EUGENIE SCOTT
Kenneth Miller
Biologist, Brown University

Miller has proudly voiced his support for what he calls "pro-science" candidates in politics. He has actively campaigned for school board and education candidates who support the teaching of evolution in Kansas and Ohio. In the science community, he has sought to elevate the understanding of scientists of the roots of the creationist movement, and to encourage the popularization of scientific concepts.

Miller has appeared in court as a witness, and on panels debating the teaching of intelligent design in schools. In 2002, the Ohio State Board of Education held a public debate between two scientists, including Miller, and two proponents of intelligent design. He was a witness in Selman v. Cobb County, testing the legality of stickers calling evolution a "theory, not a fact" that were placed on the biology textbook Miller authored. In 2005, the judge ruled that the stickers violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution . This decision was vacated on appeal on a technicality, and was remanded back to the lower court and was eventually settled out of court Miller was also the plaintiff's lead expert witness in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, challenging the school board's mandate to incorporate intelligent design into the curriculum. The judge in that case also ruled decisively in favor of the plaintiffs.

In 2006 the American Society for Cell Biology gave him a Public Service Award. The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) also recognized Miller for his contribution to the public education of evolution in the United States. Miller also appeared at the 2006 Dwight H. Terry Lectureship at Yale, delivering a lecture entitled "Darwin, God, and Dover: What the Collapse of 'Intelligent Design' Means for Science and for Faith in America."

SEARCH: KENNETH MILLER / RICHARD DAWKINS

Michael Ruse Philosopher of Science

Philosophy of science is the study of assumptions, foundations, and implications of science. The field is defined by an interest in one of a set of "traditional" problems or an interest in central or foundational concerns in science. In addition to these central problems for science as a whole, many philosophers of science consider these problems as they apply to particular sciences (e.g. philosophy of biology or philosophy of physics). Some philosophers of science also use contemporary results in science to draw philosophical morals. Although most practitioners are philosophers, several prominent scientists have contributed to the field and still do.

Issues of ethics, such as bioethics and scientific misconduct, are not generally considered part of philosophy of science. These issues may be studied in ethics or science studies.

TWO SPOKESPEOPLE FROM POLITICALLY MOTIVATED ACTION FOUNDATIONS WITH OPENLY STATED DISDAIN FOR THE JUDEO-CHRISTIAN WORLDVIEW WHO ARE CLOSELY ALLIED WITH RICHARD DAWKINS

ONE "HARD" SCIENTIST CLOSELY ALLIED WITH RICHARD DAWKINS

ONE "SOFT" SCIENTIST WHO APPEARS TO BE THE ONLY ONE WITH NO TIES TO DAWKINS IN THE GROUP

"One person who comes in for withering scorn in The God Delusion is me. Even though I am not a Christian, I nevertheless think that one can be a Christian with integrity and that Darwinism does not in itself preclude Christianity. In fighting fundamentalism - from scientific creationism to intelligent design theory - one should be willing to work with liberal Christians.

Suppose it is true - that if you are a Darwinian, then you cannot be a Christian. How then does one answer the creationist who objects to the teaching of Darwinism in schools? If theism cannot be taught in schools (in America) because it violates the separation of church and state, why then should Darwinism be permitted? Perhaps, given the U.S. Constitution, the creationists are right and Darwinism should be excluded. ”

~ Michael Ruse


MR. HELL'S SCIENCE
[SNIP]

But the critical question is: compared to what? And here Dawkins is less convincing because he fails to examine the question in a systematic way. Tests of religion's consequences might involve a number of different comparisons: between religion's good and bad effects, or between the behavior of believers and nonbelievers, and so on.

While Dawkins touches on each, his modus operandi generally involves comparing religion as practiced—religion, that is, as it plays out in the rough-and-tumble world of compromise, corruption, and incompetence—with atheism as theory. But fairness requires that we compare both religion and atheism as practiced or both as theory. The latter is an amorphous and perhaps impossible task, and I can see why Dawkins sidesteps it.

But comparing both as practiced is more straightforward. And, at least when considering religious and atheist institutions, the facts of history do not, I believe, demonstrate beyond doubt that atheism comes out on the side of the angels. Dawkins has a difficult time facing up to the dual facts that (1) the twentieth century was an experiment in secularism; and (2) the result was secular evil, an evil that, if anything, was more spectacularly virulent than that which came before.

[SNIP]
SOURCE LINK: "A MISSION TO CONVERT - NY REVIEW OF BOOKS"

SEE ALSO:


Eugenics may not be so bad
From the Afterword
By Richard Dawkins

In the 1920s and 1930s, scientists from both the political left and right would not have found the idea of designer babies particularly dangerous - though of course they would not have used that phrase. Today, I suspect that the idea is too dangerous for comfortable discussion, and my conjecture is that Adolf Hitler is responsible for the change. Nobody wants to be caught agreeing with that monster, even in a single particular.

The spectre of Hitler has led some scientists to stray from "ought" to "is" and deny that breeding for human qualities is even possible. But if you can breed cattle for milk yield, horses for running speed, and dogs for herding skill, why on Earth should it be impossible to breed humans for mathematical, musical or athletic ability?

Objections such as "these are not one-dimensional abilities" apply equally to cows, horses and dogs and never stopped anybody in practice. I wonder whether, some 60 years after Hitler's death, we might at least venture to ask what the moral difference is between breeding for musical ability and forcing a child to take music lessons. Or why it is acceptable to train fast runners and high jumpers but not to breed them. I can think of some answers, and they are good ones, which would probably end up persuading me. But hasn't the time come when we should stop being frightened even to put the question?

Richard Dawkins is Charles Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University

SNIP
Dick Dawkins & The Seven Deadlies
Mine Fuhrer!
I Can Valk!

Dawkins, Hitler and Stalin
Dawkins on his "shifting moral zeitgeist"
Hitler wasn't really that evil at all, you see


WTF is World Evolutionary Humanism, & Why Should You Care?


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posted by BabbaZee at permanent link#

15 Comments:

Blogger BabbaZee said...

dick.

Saturday, August 15, 2009 11:42:00 am  
Blogger Epaminondas said...

What's this god of bronze age camel herders shit?

Everyone knows we were sheep herders.

Now the god of bronze age sheep herders is something to fear.

Saturday, August 15, 2009 1:18:00 pm  
Blogger BabbaZee said...

So funny... that god of bronze age camel herders shit comment gotme too.

Saturday, August 15, 2009 1:45:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did G_d create the Guinea Worm, or did it evolve?

Saturday, August 15, 2009 2:07:00 pm  
Blogger BabbaZee said...

Why must it be a mutually exclusive answer?

EVOLUTION is a partially described MECHANISM

Not a CAUSE

It is like saying the transmission builds the car, but we really don;t know for sure how the fuck the transmission got there in the first place.

This whole "debate" is bullshit.

It is not about science at all. It is about who's idea of reality will control your view of the world.

Saturday, August 15, 2009 2:11:00 pm  
Blogger BabbaZee said...

...and about who will control you

http://listen.grooveshark.com/#/song/Gotta_Serve_Somebody/592949

Saturday, August 15, 2009 2:47:00 pm  
Blogger Pastorius said...

Exactly, Evolution is a mechanism. Whether you believe God uses the mechanism to create, or whether you believe the mechanism is entirely random is up to you and your faith.

I know people like to make it seem like all of us believers are a bunch of ignorant people who are anti-science, but that's bullshit.

Saturday, August 15, 2009 5:32:00 pm  
Blogger BabbaZee said...

I know people like to make it seem like all of us believers are a bunch of ignorant people who are anti-science, but that's bullshit.

Wait Ah have to go find mah last Toof

Be right back

Saturday, August 15, 2009 5:48:00 pm  
Blogger Pastorius said...

Babba.
I've read the entire post now, including some of the entire posts to which you linked.

It is excellent. Thanks for the amazing compilation and commentary, complete with metaphorical art, music, etc.

Question: In the section on Dawkins and Eugenics, he advocates the breeding of human beings designed for specific positive traits. I think the genie is out of the bottle on this one. I think it is inevitable that not only will we breed humans for positive traits and the elimination of negative traits, but that is is also likely we will learn to flip the various on/off switches in the DNA of human beings who are already conceived, born, and well into life.

Nanotechnology and DNA science is going to be able to do amazing things for the elimination of disease, and possibly the elimination of death through the aging process.

I don't see these things as bad things. I see them as good. Just as I see the practice of medicine as being good.

Eugenics is evil when it is focused on eliminating weakness from the gene pool through the elimination of certain human lives. Is Dawkins a proponent of that kind of Eugenics, or is he simply a proponent of the elimination of disease, and the promotion of strength through DNA science?

Saturday, August 15, 2009 6:19:00 pm  
Blogger BabbaZee said...

Nanotechnology and DNA science is going to be able to do amazing things for the elimination of disease, and possibly the elimination of death through the aging process.


All depends on the Premise of Life of those who control and direct it, and those who control and direct it are in an aggressive war with GOD and the biblical premise of LIFE....

This means they operate as members of the Covenant of DEATH

We only get two covenants to chose from.

So, sadly, this can not end well. GATTACA AKBAR

Saturday, August 15, 2009 6:22:00 pm  
Blogger Pastorius said...

Ok, I agree with that.

However, I do not think there science is a monolithic death cult. I believe there are many scientists at work in studying DNA and nanotech who are truly attempting to promote life, and I'm sure many of them are people of Faith.

Saturday, August 15, 2009 6:28:00 pm  
Blogger BabbaZee said...

However, I do not think there science is a monolithic death cult. I believe there are many scientists at work in studying DNA and nanotech who are truly attempting to promote life, and I'm sure many of them are people of Faith.


Naturally. But they are being thrown under buses, discredited, called loons... and most importantly NOT FUNDED .

Those "scientists" who are politically incorrect are pariahs.

A scientist warned me of all this 25 years ago. I didn't believe him fully, I didn't understand, I thought he was getting paranoid.

HA
RIP Charles E Boyle

Saturday, August 15, 2009 6:32:00 pm  
Blogger Damien said...

Anonymous,

The only way the notion of God and evolution is incompatible is if you insist on taking some holy text literally. If you insist that God cannot be real, if even one passage in the Bible is metaphorical, than yes, your concept of god is incompatible with evolution. In fact it will be incompatible with other sciences as well. That's one of the reasons why creationists end up rejecting other sciences, and not just biological science. Things like the speed of light, are incompatible with a six thousand year old universe.

However modern science is not incompatible with all views of a divine being. Many other concepts of a creator have no problem with evolution. Christians and Jews who have a non literal interpretation of the Bible have no problem with evolution. Even moderate Muslims who don't believe most of the stuff in the Koran, and reject many of the hate filled passages, might not have a problem with evolution, at all. In fact one of the ways one might be able to judge weather or not a Muslim actually rejects Jihad and Sharia, is if he accepts evolution. If he accepts evolution, he doesn't take the Koran literally. We can be pretty certain a Jihadist on the other hand, rejects evolution.

Also the Deist concept of god is certainly compatible with evolution.

Saturday, August 15, 2009 7:12:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(a different anonymous)

My atheism stems more from some basic observations about god's present day "behavior" or more specifically, it's lack thereof.

Dawkins, Hitchins, Carl Sagan, etc. do make some interesting points, but they don't weigh very heavily in my calculation. I do not follow some kind of organized pre-formatted atheist doctrine.

For me, it takes only a single small child to disprove the entire notion of an attendant, loving, metaphysically omnipotent god.

One small child dragged into the desert and raped by a gang of evil men. One small child heading off for that exciting first day of school in a small Russian village.

If there is NO god, I can live with the fact that evil happens because there is nothing available (as yet) to put a stop to it.

But if there IS a god, I don't want to hear weak human theories about why this supposedly omnipotent being allows so much evil to happen to innocent little children. I can conceive of no reason that would ever be sufficient.

So I want you all to know that if I should ever find myself face to face with such a creature, it had better have a universe-shakingly compelling reason for what it has permitted on Earth in places like Beslan and a thousand others. If that explanation is insufficient, I will do everything in my power to rid the universe of this omnipotent impotence trickster.

The free will argument is null and void to me. If humans are granted free will by god to do that kind of evil to one another, than eternity doesn't hold enough time for that creature to do it's 'splainin' to me. Better it make itself scarce.

Sunday, August 16, 2009 6:35:00 pm  
Blogger Pastorius said...

The way I see it, our Free Will (which is what allows us to have Creativity and Imagination) is so important to God that he was willing to die for it (in His Son Yeshua.

God is a Creative God. He imbued us with Creativity. We were created, as the Bible says, "in His Image."

For me, that is a sufficient answer.

In fact, it is the only sufficient answer.

The problem of pain is the thorniest of all issues, isn't it?

By the way, note most Christians will tell you Christ died for our sins, and that is true (if you believe the Bible as I do).

But, I will tell you Christ died so that we could continue to have Free Will, Creativity and Imagination even though the results of our will almost always lead to death.

God was willing to die for our Free Will, Creativity and Imagination.

And, also, understand that sin is more than just the things you do wrong. Sin is the whole human condition, the pain, the shame, the humiliation, the stink, the confusion, the apathy, the despair.

The Bible says Yeshua the Christ took ALL OF THAT ON HIMSELF. All of our pains, every single one of us. He took all of it on Himself AT ONE TIME. (Imagine that. Isn't the load in your life enough. But, he took everyone's load.) He took on the pain of the little children who were killed in Beslan, and the children who were dragged off into the desert and raped.

And, he died from the pain of it, and went to hell and laid it on Satan the Accuser.

And, then He rose from the Dead, so that we may also Rise from our Death.

Yes, that is a sufficient answer for me.

Sunday, August 16, 2009 8:50:00 pm  

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