Starting off chapter two, which is entitled “Defining Science,” is a brief description of the Jim Rose Circus Sideshow, unknown to most, but a troupe of traveling masochists (or so it seems) who represent his caricature of science. These little side stories can have more of an effect than the reader understands, though. Right off the bat, science is seen as either freakish or trivial due to the association with that particular experience of his. Because of this, I find it necessary to give you the actual definition of “science”:
1. a branch of knowledge or study dealing with a body of facts or truths systematically arranged and showing the operation of general laws
2. systematic knowledge of the physical or material world gained through observation and experimentation…
4. systematized knowledge in general.
5. knowledge, as of facts or principles; knowledge gained by systematic study.
6. a particular branch of knowledge.
7. skill, esp. reflecting a precise application of facts or principles; proficiency. (from dictionary.com)
Alright - I had posted this as a comment under my previous blog post, but it's too damn long to not make it separate. So, without further ado...my response to his response to my response to The Irrational Atheist.
Actually, we're only supposed to make sure you have heard the Gospel, if you're not inclined to listen, we're permitted to shake the dust from our sandals and move on in good conscience. Moreoever, I never claimed to be a particularly good Christian, the reason I'm less annoying than the door-knocking fundamentalist who wants to talk to you about Jesus is because I care less about your fate. My libertarianism pretty much goes to the bone.
I prefer your more subdued form of proselytization, but I think that the bible clearly indicates that as one of the “elect,” you should in fact feel sorrow for the fate of our heathen souls. People like Paul even wept for the lost. At any rate, this is a trivial point that is not written out plainly as a command, so I won’t press it further.
Vox has published his criticisms of my critique here. It's possible that I may need to clarify some of the points to which he objected, so I'll get to that and then we'll get ready for round 2!
ETA: Here is Vox's response in its entirety. He didn't seem to mind in the comments on his blog, so here ya go.
I think I’ve been postponing this project long enough, and since other people on our forums are starting to talk about this book, I should probably stop playing Rock Band and get my butt in gear. So, welcome to the first in a series of posts discussing Vox Day’s The Irrational Atheist.
I am going to be going through this book one chapter at a time in order to keep the posts relatively short and still allow for a detailed analysis. I mentioned that plan to Vox Day, who kindly provided me with a complimentary copy of this book, and his suggestion was to read the entire book first before beginning. After getting about half-way through it, I didn’t see anything that necessitated that, but just as an FYI, if any of my points of contention are dealt with in later chapters, I’ll note that in later posts.
That's not me speaking, but I wanted to get your attention. the author of that quote is none other than the late purveyor of bigotry Jerry Falwell's son, Jonathan Falwell, at WorldNetDaily. I was perusing the site in preparation for my upcoming blog discussion with Vox Day, another columnist for WorldNetDaily and owner of the blog Vox Popoli. (It should be an exciting exchange--I'm currently reading his book The Irrational Atheist. Stay tuned.) Apparently, Falwell is still clinging to the "Margaret Sanger was a proponent of eugenics" argument against Planned Parenthood and reproductive rights, but even more disturbing was another article I found at the same nefarious site authored by Bob Unruh, entitled "Planned Parenthood: Wanting fewer blacks 'understandable".
This is a response to a nagging little pest we've had around here lately, to whom I was essentially blackmailed into responding. The original thread is located here. You'll see in the thread that this lovely young man threatens to send one email per day until he is answered to his satisfaction, and then proceeds to post relentlessly to that end. In an attempt to end this idiocy, I've tried to answer all of his extremely lengthy posts at once; therefore, this is extraordinarily long, and for that, I apologize.
This is from June of last year, but this is the first I've heard of it, so hopefully everybody isn't already familiar. A scientific experiment was conducted to determine the impact of anger on decision-making and rationality. It was concluded that anger actually improves your thought processes and helps you to make better decisions which you more strongly uphold. So, take that all of you nay-sayers who constantly criticize us for tossing away the facade of propriety and demeanor of respect for others' beliefs. We're actually better off precisely because we get angry.
The Jewish Aphilosopher (Yeah - the A was intentional - figure it out)
Conflating Ayn Rand's objectivist philosophy, of which I am not a fan, with atheism before the actual article even begins is just the tip of the iceberg. His depiction of atheists is nothing short of bigoted and disgusting. He's "The Jewish Philosopher"? I can't even find the philosophy under the pile of steaming shit that he excreted onto his site. I'm telling you this up front only because you're going to need those hip-high waders and possibly protection for your monitor before reading further.
I don't find it surprising that the two writers I will be addressing here find atheists to be angry, selfish, and in one case, diseased. The patronizing attitudes of these men would drive the most timid among us into a fit. So, obviously, I nearly convulsed while reading these two articles-both full of condescension; spewing venomous rhetoric that does nothing more than add up to one giant attack on the character of everybody without a belief in their mythological friend.
Marty Fields, a pastor at a Presbyterian Church, and Jacob Stein, an orthodox Jew who has mistaken his skill in fallacious argumentation for philosophy: You two are winning the award for "Arrogant Deluded Fatuous Pricks of the Year." It's a coveted prize, and you were nearly overtaken by Dinesh D'Souza, but even he isn't this moronic.
Marty Fields, who will not be addressed as "Reverend" here as I have no reverence for him or his ilk, wrote an op-ed entitled "Angry Atheists". He starts out by accusing atheists of being philosophical dilettantes, using the "same old tired arguments that you heard in your freshman philosophy class." Ironic, coming from a proponent of a religion that hasn't come up with a new argument in 2000 years. I think that tops freshman year philosophy, eh?
There is a quote from Dr. Albert Ellis in which I find some solace: "By not caring too much about what people think, I'm able to think for myself and propagate ideas which are very often unpopular. And I succeed." For some reason, it makes me feel less alone in this quest to expose religion for the fraudulent and dangerous idealogy that it is. The fact is, though, that without our community of people behind us, we would never be able to continue doing this.
We've grown pretty thick skins over the past two years, but an endless stream of criticism and insults gets to you no matter who you are. In the end, our controversial approach has acheived exactly what we intended and more. We've had a ton of publicity: We've been in periodicals, tv shows, respectable radio shows, and magazines. Our website is currently the number one atheist website in the world according to Alexa, and has been number one in the US for quite some time. Of course, some of that traffic is people who hate us, but we have still managed to acheive more in the 2 years that we've been around than others have in 20. Even if you disagree with our tactics, you can't deny that we get people talking.