Major Errors in the Debate

croath
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Major Errors in the Debate

I have to say, that the recent debate that Kelly and Sapient participated in has confirmed my thoughts that the so called Rational Response Squad are amateur, at best. I won’t comment much on Ray and Kirk other than to say that they are excellent speakers for giving testimony, but not so great at the philosophy either. I do not think they addressed the question adequately. It appears that you all went in with different expectations of what was to be argued, and how.
Sapient and Kelly, your arguments reflected a lack of understanding of the issues at hand. You appeal to the masses, to popular sentiments, but very little in the way of content or persuasive value. The reason is that most or all of the arguments you presented have already been answered by professional theistic philosophers.
You seem to be under the false impression that there is no debate here – that theists are blind to the most obvious of facts, the fact that God does not exist. Rather what is in fact clear is that you have little understanding of the arguments that have been made for and against the existence of God. Instead, you promote arguments that have long ago been demolished and do not represent the cutting edge of either theistic or atheistic thought. Though you cannot be completely to blame, as Dawkins’ recent book ‘The God Delusion’ is a step backwards in educating atheists.
There were so many thoughts that each deserved a debate on their own, that I’m only going to briefly touch on various items:
· Sapient in his opening speech argued that designers of buildings are different, because we can call them up and check permit records. I wonder, then, what Sapient would conclude with this: a thousand years in the future, humans travel to a planet circling Proxima Centauri. Landing on the planet, to their surprise they see a strange spherical object hovering above the ground. It has etched on it what appears to us to be symbols, but if they are, they are a foreign language. When the visitors approach it, above it lights play, giving an image of what seems to be the surrounding area, but at a different time. When they move away, it stops. Would Sapient be able to call this object designed? Or would he, knowing nothing at all about aliens (their phone numbers, the location of their building permits or blueprints, etc), be unable to detect design? Or is it possible to tell something is designed solely by considering the item before us?
· Sapient and Kelly both argued that you can be the worst of the worst, and still go to heaven. As though a Christian is free to murder, rape, and pillage, so long as at the end of the day he remembers to pray for forgiveness. This is just an absurd misunderstanding of Christian doctrine, and I wonder at their claims that they once went to church. Perhaps they were fresh out of Sunday School when they became atheists, or didn’t pay attention? Christians teach _repentance_ as going hand in hand with forgiveness. Repentance is not an outward speaking of words, but an inward decision to turn away from the things that we do wrong. If someone were to ask for forgiveness, but in their heart they did not mean it and keep sinning, then they have not repented. It’s that simple. People who do not repent are not forgiven, and those that Kelly and Sapient said would go to heaven would in fact not.
· Sapient said, “If all creations need a creator, then what created God?”. Perhaps Sapient can be forgiven for making this elementary mistake, but he should really investigate this issue in more depth. If you’re going to argue and draw such a large crowd, you should take the time to understand what you’re arguing. William Craig is the most common proponent of the Cosmological Argument, and he explains very clearly why this is not a problem. His argument runs as follows:
1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause
2. The universe began to exist
3. Therefore the universe has a cause
As a complement to this, the best current scientific thought demonstrates time as beginning at the big bang. This means that whatever caused the big bang was itself timeless. A timeless cause needs no beginning – only temporal entities have a beginning, and therefore a need for a creator. God, being timeless, needs no such thing. The theist has a much better answer for the cause of the universe. It explains that cause as an atemporal entity. The atheist just says the universe came from nothing - which is more absurd, that something began from nothing, or that something began from something? This also answers the later criticism that was raised, asking why the universe can’t be the always existing thing. There are two supplements to this:
1. The reason why the universe can’t be the infinitely existing thing is because the best current scientific thought shows the universe, and time, as having a definite beginning, “before” which it did not begin. Kelly and Sapient consider themselves heroes of the scientific cause – so they are not free to pick and choose which science they wish to disregard. The universe did not exist eternally into the past.
2. The German Philosopher Gottfried Leibniz promoted an argument where he explained why if the universe were infinitely old, it would need a cause. If we ignored current scientific evidence, and believed the universe to have always existed, then we would still not find the atheists argument compelling. Leibniz outlined this argument in “On the Radical Origination of Things”. If you’re wondering why the universe being infinitely old is unacceptable, but why God being atemporal is – then consider what’s being said: The universe is said by some atheists to be infinitely old, but it is still temporal. However, people like William Craig argue that God is atemporal – not infinitely old, but atemporal. Craig also has presented arguments explaining why an infinitely old universe is logically impossible. Please look into his works
· As for the arguments of the imperfection of the human system, I’ll make these brief comments. The eye is not regarded as imperfect. Perhaps if the eye was the only thing in the human body it might be, but engineers must consider optimal design. Various components may not be perfect, but the system as a whole is an excellent design as a result of the compromises made in various subsystems. Many have argued that the eye’s blind spot provides no evidence of imperfection. As an amusing side note on Sapient’s comments about snakes having vestigial legs, in Genesis 3 the curse God places on the serpent seems to indicate that snakes were once meant to walk. I direct you to Genesis 3:14. I don’t think this is proof of anything, just an amusing and perhaps ironic side note.
· Sapient’s arguments regarding science’s contributions vs that of religion are groundless and irrelevant. It’s not religion vs science. Religious people can be scientists, and often are. The arena of empirical evidence is not somehow the sole domain of atheists. If Leibniz, Newton and others made contributions to science, you can’t count that as some atheistic victory. The success of science says *nothing* about religion. Don’t confuse Atheism and Science as synonymous terms, they’re unrelated in the way Sapient thinks they are.
· We are all atheists in respect to Zeus, Thor, etc? Atheism is the belief that God does not exist. Theists believe God exists. Just because I reject the notion of God as being like Zeus, does not make me an atheist like Sapient and Kelly. It just means when someone tells me that God (though they refer to Him as Zeus) came down in the form of a snake and slept with a woman, I say I don’t agree.
· There is one comment made by Kelly that is beautifully absurd. She exclaims that if God existed, “We would live in a world of magic, where you could turn on the light switch, and well maybe it would turn on and maybe it wouldn’t because, hey, it’s magic!” This argument just plain does not work. What is Kelly afraid of? That if God exists, He would have the freedom to override our expectations? So what? We already have intelligent agents in this world – humans. These humans have the freedom to cut off our power if they so decide, and to connect it again. We already live in that uncertain world, where the actions of intelligent agents can override our expectations. God would be an agent no different – He would have the freedom to intervene in our world and prevent the light switch too. Does Kelly believe that it is impossible for aliens to exist, because if they did then our light switches might not work the next day if they decided to cut off our power? It’s just absurd. We can’t disbelieve in an entity merely because it would have the power to override our expectations. Maybe Kelly would like it to be the case that God does not exist, or aliens don’t exist, so that she can’t be afraid of the actions of something more powerful than her – but her likes and dislikes say nothing about reality.
· The reference to the Flying Spaghetti Monster fails. Presumably the argument is something like this: If God exists, then how do we know whether it is Yahweh, Zeus, or the Flying Spaghetti Monster? But you can’t argue that God doesn’t exist, just because if He did exist we wouldn’t know certain things about Him. If we are successful in demonstrating that it is probable that God exists, then you can raise the question as to whether He’s properly called Zeus, Yahweh or FSM. But then you’ll be a theist, arguing about the nature of God. This point does nothing to build up a case for atheism.
· What is Kelly’s point about the argument of the universe’s perfection being countered by the fact we are here to observe it? I believe she is referring to the Fine Tuning argument, but clumsily so. Hard to address this when the argument hasn’t been clearly made.
· On what grounds does Kelly argue that God is exempt from ordinary logic and rationality? Most Christian analytical philosophers would argue that God is subject to the laws of logic and rationality as we are – if not more.
· Regarding consciousness and morality – no points to be made here. Atheism can explain the existence of morality, but it’s not a point in favour of atheism. What atheists cannot explain is why we must be moral.
I think that’s enough for now.
Thanks


deludedgod
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croath wrote:  Is there

croath wrote:

 Is there some secret war going on here that I don't know about?

I have no idea. I certainly did not feel I said anything to warrant his vicious outbursts (do you?). I do feel the members of this site can be disrespectful sometimes, and I do not like the "Mind Disorder Known as Theism" label. It's detestable. But petrov's comments are equally uncalled for, especially considering I didn't say anything to him, have not engaged him in debate, and that when I first read his posts and his exchange with lao tzu, that I considered him a well spoken, intelligent individual. Now I consider him a vile, obnoxious jerk. 

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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petrov wrote:

petrov wrote:

deludedgod wrote:
You are being incredibly vile. I was not rude nor hostile to you in any way. There was absolutely no need for any of the unwarranted things you just said. None at all.

This is a vile, rude and hostile site. There is absolutely no need for any of the scorn, hate and vitriol being poured on Christians and Christianity by RRS. As I already stated, you are all a bunch of cry-baby hypocrites. You like to dish it out but when you are met with a response that combines aggression and intellect you fold and cry foul. You are a coward -- a half-educated, infantile and poorly-parented, moronic coward.

deludedtool wrote:
You are being a foul lout, and I assure you, this will not go unnoticed.

Oh I'm alarmed. What will you do? Post a video on YouTube of some dickhead smearing the Bible with faeces? That's already been done. Will you assert that I am irrational and that I have a mental illness? That's already been done also. Will you exclude me from your odious forum that is infested with half-wits? I couldn't care. Knock yourself out.

Petrov,

Your posts have become increasingly vile, and antagonistic in this thread simply because the others are disagreeing with you. Ad hominens are uncalled for.

You may want to take a moment to review the rules:

Here

Violation of these rules is uncalled for when engaged in honest debate, if you wish to continue posting here please familiarize yourself with the rules. If you continue to antagonize action WILL be taken.


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Say what you will, fellow

Say what you will, fellow infidels, but at the very least, give credit where it's due. That smackdown on ShaunPhilly was a work of art. Kudos, petrov. I am hoping this bit of verbal cartharsis is sufficient to calm your seas, and you can now return to the conversation we were attempting.

Allow me, as a recently joined member of this board, and a decades-successful escapee from fundamentalist christianity, to address your criticisms here.

petrov wrote:
ShaunPhilly wrote:
I'm disconcerted by the very rude and judgmental comments about both Kelly and Brian, both of whom I happen to like very much. There is no reason to be disrespectful of a person, even if you think there ideas are silly, wrong, or irrational.


That's all quite rich. What is the siginficance of your disposition towards Brian and Kelly to me? Self-righteous moral indignation coming from you is completely meaningless and totally unpersuasive for numerous reasons.


The only significance I can see in the admission of a personal relationship here is as a declaration of bias. Score one for petrov.

Quote:
It seems that RRS members can't get as well as they give.


That's probably true at present, but unlikely to remain true for long. It takes time to grow a thick skin. That and the regular application of abrasives. I believe their present attitudes are likely to attract both of these prerequisites.

I can barely stand to take apart the following screed out of respect for the full bore stream-of-consciousness emotional revel it represents. Having enjoyed the portrait from a distance, perhaps you can abide an examination of the brush strokes.

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I didn't establish ...


In fact, most of the posters here did not establish this site. Most of us are, like you, merely passersby. The culture of a board cannot be dictated by its owners, only directed. As has been said before, bringing atheists together is akin to herding cats. I note a tendency in your posts, even to me, to identify us all as a rigid mass. To this point I simply did not respond to this suggestion, as it was both visibly untrue and off topic.

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the anti-Christian,


Christians generally display an irrational criterion in their search for knowledge, and as such become a natural target for rational criticism. They believe, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, that faith can serve as a discriminator of truth. But it would be a mistake to consider the attack on "faith as decider" as a directed attack against christianity. At most, your faith is simply collateral damage.

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Christ-hating,


This is certainly unfair. I imagine many, if not most, atheists feel that the Jesus who lays behind the mythologized renderings that remain in your sacred texts was probably quite the character, if he existed at all. Speaking for myself, I'd have loved to meet him. On the contrary, I would argue, forcefully, that the deification of this man is a defilement of his humanity, and as such, far more injurious to the person you think of as christ than anything we infidels construct ourselves.

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Christian -denigrating,


"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." — Edmund Burke.

In my experience, there is no greater denigration possible of christians than the accommodation christians make for the charlatans in their midst. Falwell, Haggard, Hinn, Swaggart, and a roll call of infamy stretching back all the way to Paul, once called Saul, who defied the instruction of the apostles themselves. We did not create these characters, nor do we support their continued ministries. That denigration comes from you.

Quote:
Scripture-defiling


The history of the sacred texts of christianity shows them to be anything but pristine. They exhibit borrowings from the creation tales of the pagans, plagiarism of the law codes of earlier empires, a massive redaction in the sixth century BCE, and a canonization process dripping in the blood of martyred "heretics."

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theme of your rancid website and forum.


"Don't stop him. He's on a roll." — Animal House

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It would be great if you lead by example and present your philosophical differences in a civil and respectful manner.


The same could be said for suggestions to do so. It seems instead that you wish your advice to go unheeded.

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You do no such thing.


Some of us do. And, on the first occasion I did so, I found a mod backing up my suggestion immediately. Not bad considering I'm a total newb to the site, sporting a screen name representing a religious tradition they publicly despise.

Quote:
You have that tool David Mills smearing the Bible with dog shit, you have the dynamic duo of douche-bagery disseminating lies about Scripture and you have that smarmy slut Kelly denigrating the intellect of all Christians, as if getting ploughed was some great feat of intellect that qualified the judgement.


I think your seduction techniques need a bit of work. Have you ever tried flowers and chocolate? Rumor has it that David is a sucker for cream-filled chocolate easter bunnies.

Quote:
The RRS are a bunch of cowards. None of you would dare being as disrespectful to Muslims and Islam as you are to Christians and Christianity. I challenge David 'The Tool' Mills to put up a video of him smearing excrement on the Koran. Perhaps blubber boy Brian can pen a grotty screed against Islam and 'tard boy Rook can provide a 'kriticull analeesisss' of the Koran.


Personally, I spend almost all of my board time on muslim sites. It is far less challenging, however, due to the poor quality of English among the native Farsi and Punjabi speakers. Still, I've had my share of respondents willing to "swear by Allah i would cut our your tounge ..." Demographics determine the natural audience for an English-based website.

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<snip>

You're a cry-baby and a hypocrite. Being Christian doesn't entail being a kicking bag for whitewashed tombs like you.


I love that verse. It's the sure sign of a failed chute from a christian base-jumper.

Quote:
Let the circle jerk continue.


Actually, I'd prefer some kind of response to my last post preceding this one. You'll note I've supplied the missing proteins from the bacterial flagellum you requested.

As ever, Jesse

There is no lao tzu


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croath wrote: Call me

croath wrote:

Call me crazy, but I prefer not to wade through 35 pages of posts, and then add to it, discussing with a lot of noise around. Especially when a majority of those posts are completely unrelated to the topics that interest me. I find threads to be quite a useful tool for separating discussions.

Besides, I thought that main thread was for where you and Sapient will try to respond. I wasn't necessarily interested in a response from you (though I'd certainly welcome it).

As for your witty "erros" joke, I have corrected the typo. Looks like I won't necessarily be getting a response to the content of my post. Sorry about the lack of paragraphs - I wrote this elsewhere and then cut and pasted it.

Alright - since this thread seems to be getting out of hand, I'll address this first. The reason that we responded in the fashion that we did is because all of your objections were dealt with in the main thread. You may find the creation of new threads to be convenient for you as a reader/poster, but they certainly aren't from our perspective as admins. Particularly when there is a thread that we created specifically for this purpose. Unfortunately, we don't have the time to read every post or thread, much less respond to all of them. You may not want to wade through 35 pages of posts, but if you had, you would have realized that you didn't need to waste time rehashing the same criticisms that we have  received since day one.

The "erros" thing was funny--you've got to admit that calling us out for being amateurish and making "mistakes" comes across as slightly absurd when you have a spelling error in your thread title. 


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petrov wrote: I'm pretty

petrov wrote:

I'm pretty much done with this thread and perhaps this entire forum.

You'll be missed. I haven't laughed so hard in days.  


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In this post I'll try

In this post I'll try simply to respond to all the things not worthy of responses, call me masochist. Basically I'll be responding to the ad hominem attacks, the strawmen, the lies, and mischaracterizations.

 

petrov wrote:

The premise of this forum is that Christians are anti-science, ignorant, stupid and deluded.

Wrong. We know plenty of intelligent Christians, I even like Ken Miller and his support of evolution. The premise of this forum is that irrational claims should be responded to, religion is on of the many that warrant a rational response.

 

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Is that not your opinion also? If so then Knuth is a counterexample to your prejudice. Knuth's very existence weakens the entire RRS project. I'd say that Knuth has more intelligence, knowledge and rationality than every RRS member combined.

So that would give him what? About a 1 million IQ? Or were you just counting the 4 show hosts which IQ tallies around 600?

It doesn't matter, your argument rested on the faulty premise that this forum is about how Christians are stupid.

 

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Brian, Rook and Kelly aren't even a pimple on Knuth's butt.

And thank Jake for that!

 

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It's perverse that three nobodies -- who will most likely amount to nothing

It's more like 5 or 6 nobodies that will eventually become worm food... that's something! Not nothing.

 

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(if I understand correctly Kelly is a whore or a stripper and Brian mooches of her wages)

Like much of the rest of the post, no you don't "understand correctly."

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-- would make a blanket judgement on the intellect and worth of all Christians.

I'd make no blanket judgement about a Christians worth or intellect. I'd make a blanket judgement about their ability to rationally defend their belief in god... they can't do it.

Good try though.

MrRage wrote:
Whatever huh? The issue isn't qualifications its possessing a modicum of intelligence and knowledge. These appear to be lacking on this forum.

It seems to be going downhill with your presence, that's for sure.

 

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you should spend some time acquiring knowledge and thinking.

What a novel concept, I'll start soon, I'm still trying to grasp how any of us are able to form a complete sentence without a modicum of intelligence or knowledge, but seeing as I have no intellect, I am in quite a quandry.

 

 

MrRage wrote:
I think that on a bad day Kelly has trouble finding her anus.

You know if I didn't have to shit twice a day I'd almost forget that I had an anus. How's the joke go, I forget I have no intellect, something like.... I'd rather have trouble finding my own anus, than to be an anus.

 

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Kelly and Brian operate off of straw man caricatures of Christians and Christianity.

Project much?

 

Here's a strawman for you... "RRS says all Christians are stupid... here's why that's wrong"

Yeah... strawman... put down the rock, the glass above you already has a crack in it.

 

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The 'Blasphemy Challenge' is a still-born project based on a fundamental misunderstanding of Scripture and the nature of sin and redemption. This is suggestive of a complete ignorance of the Bible even by your resident 'historian' and 'ancient texts expert'.

Go ahead, prove you believe what you're saying....

Say "I deny the existence of the Holy spirit."


Quote:

Do you honestly believe you are in a position to deem me irrational?

Yes. With the limited knowledge I have of you, I could find more negative personality traits to add that list as well in your case.

 

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I'm pretty much done with this thread and perhaps this entire forum.

Don't let the http:// hit you on the way out.

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petrov wrote: It seems

petrov wrote:

It seems that RRS members can't get as well as they give.

Bring it on.

 

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I didn't establish the anti-Christian, Christ-hating, Christian -denigrating, Scripture-defiling theme of your rancid website and forum.

Neither did we. God put it here... prove me wrong.

 

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You have that tool David Mills smearing the Bible with dog shit, you have the dynamic duo of douche-bagery disseminating lies about Scripture and you have that smarmy slut Kelly denigrating the intellect of all Christians, as if getting ploughed was some great feat of intellect that qualified the judgement.

Ahhh, a fan of Frank Walton, clearly you are the epitome of bullshit detection.

 

Quote:
The RRS are a bunch of cowards. None of you would dare being as disrespectful to Muslims and Islam as you are to Christians and Christianity.

Convert to Islam... come back... test me.

Send all the muslims here, test me.

Tell a muslim defender of his faith to come on the show, test me.

 

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I challenge David 'The Tool' Mills to put up a video of him smearing excrement on the Koran.

I challenge David Mills to ignore you, something I should be doing, but it's just too much fun to tip cows.

 

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Perhaps blubber boy Brian can pen a grotty screed against Islam and 'tard boy Rook can provide a 'kriticull analeesisss' of the Koran.

Do you live in America? Because if we institute the challenge for Islam that we have been working on (which we'd like to do) we fear the backlash will be the burning of American cities by the Islamic community. We have been pondering our responsibility there for quite some time.

 

 

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This forum is one giant circle jerk.

If that is so, could you please take your hand off of my penis.

 

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I'll add value on my terms not yours. My terms include conforming to the RRSs standard of conduct (but not scholarship) i.e. being caustic and abrasive.

We don't talk like you do, I couldn't if I tried, you're my abundantly more hatefilled counterpart. As for conforming to the standard of conduct, you've violated half the board rules, your banning is being called for but Kelly and I are holding off the troops because you're just so fucking funny.

 

ShaunPhilly wrote:
Quote:
I'm sorry to hear that. We'll miss your sweet words and loving, almost Jesus-like, character.

You're a cry-baby and a hypocrite. Being Christian doesn't entail being a kicking bag for whitewashed tombs like you.

Ahh... fuck what I just said. Shaun feel free to ban if you want. Let me know if you do, so I can track his ip as well.

 

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lao tzu wrote: Say what you

lao tzu wrote:
Say what you will, fellow infidels, but at the very least, give credit where it's due. That smackdown on ShaunPhilly was a work of art. Kudos, petrov. I am hoping this bit of verbal cartharsis is sufficient to calm your seas, and you can now return to the conversation we were attempting.


petrov wrote:
ShaunPhilly wrote:
I'm disconcerted by the very rude and judgmental comments about both Kelly and Brian, both of whom I happen to like very much. There is no reason to be disrespectful of a person, even if you think there ideas are silly, wrong, or irrational.


That's all quite rich. What is the siginficance of your disposition towards Brian and Kelly to me? Self-righteous moral indignation coming from you is completely meaningless and totally unpersuasive for numerous reasons.


The only significance I can see in the admission of a personal relationship here is as a declaration of bias. Score one for petrov.

Personal bias...on OUR forums from a moderator that WE chose. Odd. Point retracted by referee. (Not to mention that if anybody spoke to anybody else in that manner, they would likely get the same response, minus the fact that he likes us.)

Quote:
Quote:
It seems that RRS members can't get as well as they give.


That's probably true at present...

No--we are more than willing to accept criticism that is based on reason. We are not willing to accept vitriolic, hate-mongering, nor do we treat others in that fashion. It is unfortunate that the aforementioned poster appears to be fairly eloquent. Maybe he's off his meds. *shrugs*


Quote:
Quote:
Christ-hating,


This is certainly unfair. I imagine many, if not most, atheists feel that the Jesus who lays behind the mythologized renderings that remain in your sacred texts was probably quite the character, if he existed at all.

It is impossible to hate that in which I do not believe. Otherwise, the Christ myth is just a rehash of countless other savior-gods. Not interesting or noteworthy except for the fact that people still believe in him today, as opposed to Mithras or Dionysus.

Quote:
Quote:
Christian -denigrating,


In my experience, there is no greater denigration possible of christians than the accommodation christians make for the charlatans in their midst. Falwell, Haggard, Hinn, Swaggart, and a roll call of infamy stretching back all the way to Paul, once called Saul, who defied the instruction of the apostles themselves. We did not create these characters, nor do we support their continued ministries. That denigration comes from you.

Good response.

Quote:
Quote:
Scripture-defiling


The history of the sacred texts of christianity shows them to be anything but pristine. They exhibit borrowings from the creation tales of the pagans, plagiarism of the law codes of earlier empires, a massive redaction in the sixth century BCE, and a canonization process dripping in the blood of martyred "heretics."

Another good response. Mine would have been more like, "Waah! They don't like my fairy tale!" 





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petrov wrote: This is a

petrov wrote:

This is a vile, rude and hostile site. There is absolutely no need for any of the scorn, hate and vitriol being poured on Christians and Christianity by RRS.

Yes there is, look at what that irrationality has spawned.

 

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As I already stated, you are all a bunch of cry-baby hypocrites.

 

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You like to dish it out but when you are met with a response that combines aggression and intellect you fold and cry foul.

And it hurt us so much that we didn't respond to any of your posts and we deleted your content and banned you from the board... oh wait... nevermind.

 

Quote:
You are a coward -- a half-educated, infantile and poorly-parented, moronic coward.

You know he holds a masters in Philosophy right?

 

deludedtool wrote:

Oh I'm alarmed. What will you do? Post a video on YouTube of some dickhead smearing the Bible with faeces? That's already been done. Will you assert that I am irrational and that I have a mental illness? That's already been done also.

Yup, our work is done here.

 

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kellym78 wrote: Alright -

kellym78 wrote:

Alright - since this thread seems to be getting out of hand, I'll address this first. The reason that we responded in the fashion that we did is because all of your objections were dealt with in the main thread. You may find the creation of new threads to be convenient for you as a reader/poster, but they certainly aren't from our perspective as admins. Particularly when there is a thread that we created specifically for this purpose. Unfortunately, we don't have the time to read every post or thread, much less respond to all of them. You may not want to wade through 35 pages of posts, but if you had, you would have realized that you didn't need to waste time rehashing the same criticisms that we have received since day one.

Sure. As I said, I didn't necessarily expect a response from you and Brian. I have perused the first 4 pages and seen discussion of the cosmological argument problems I listed discussed, in little detail, and not much else. I'm very interested in comments on the other points you guys made in the debate that I listed on - because it seemed to me that you didn't have a single argument that wasn't ill thought and already answered, well, by theists. Perhaps Ray and Kirk didn't address you on them, but that doesn't mean you should assume that they are based on sound reasoning. Do those points get touched on later in the Great Thread?

Quote:

The "erros" thing was funny--you've got to admit that calling us out for being amateurish and making "mistakes" comes across as slightly absurd when you have a spelling error in your thread title.

Sure, I can see the irony of having a "minor" error in a title that speaks about major errors, and I can see the humor. But your response indicated some sort of points scoring victory.


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kellym78 wrote: Personal

kellym78 wrote:

Personal bias...on OUR forums from a moderator that WE chose. Odd. Point retracted by referee. (Not to mention that if anybody spoke to anybody else in that manner, they would likely get the same response, minus the fact that he likes us.)

You can create apologetics for your bias (or you can claim it doesn't exist), but you can't do both at the same time without appearing ridiculous. Nor does a player on one team get to put on a referee's uniform without being laughed out of the arena. Point retraction retracted with prejudice.

I've got most of two decades of media experience under my belt, in positions up to and including managing editor in print and research and marketing director in television, meanwhile maintaining my foothold in academia. One of the first things I've taught every cub reporter or graduate student under my wing was how to spot and make allowances for one's prejudices. It's not tough. It's as simple as seeking outside opinion.

Sure it's your site. But unless you'd like to argue that "might makes right" is a rational criterion for deciding debate, I see no purpose behind continuing to proclaim your ownership rights. I don't suck up to fundy board owners and I see no reason to change my policy merely because I'm now among those who are closer to my own beliefs.

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Quote:
That's probably true at present...

No--we are more than willing to accept criticism that is based on reason. We are not willing to accept vitriolic, hate-mongering, nor do we treat others in that fashion. It is unfortunate that the aforementioned poster appears to be fairly eloquent. Maybe he's off his meds. *shrugs*

Most theists will "perceive" your message as vitriolic and hate-mongering, whether or not it is actualized. It is that perception that must be countered if you wish to become persuasive. On occasion that means giving vitriol free rein in order to provide the opportunity to deconstruct it, as I'd hoped to demonstrate in my previous post. This is the "thick skin" I referenced in the portion of my comment you've snipped.

Elsewhere on this board, (in gregfl's post-nightline musings thead), I've argued for the need to heighten awareness of the value of public relations. You name yourselves the rational response squad. Well and good. Do you wish to portray your "response" as anti-theism, or as pro-reason? It makes a difference, you know.

I would hardly call it "unfortunate" that petrov is fairly eloquent, though I'd probably eliminate the modifier.  He is eloquent.  That's the thing about him I find most attractive. Unlike far too many of his fellow adherents, he does seem to have the intellectual ability and interest necessary to pursue an argument. The negative correlation between education and theism, especially in the fundamentalist community, represents an opportunity, not a disaster. One cannot teach a stone.

Your comment about his meds, by the way, stands in direct contradiction to your claim that you "do not treat others in that fashion."

Quote:

It is impossible to hate that in which I do not believe. Otherwise, the Christ myth is just a rehash of countless other savior-gods. Not interesting or noteworthy except for the fact that people still believe in him today, as opposed to Mithras or Dionysus.

Without contradicting your personal feelings or lack of them for the man who may or may not have existed who is known to christianity as Jesus ... *deep breath* ... the general point is invalid. Huddled around their televisions most afternoons are millions of viewers passionately involved in the imaginary lives of the characters portrayed in daytime drama. If you consider the proposition objectively, I'm sure you can easily find your own counterexamples.

The Jesus Myth position, as evidenced by the groans from the heavily atheist audience in your encounter with Kirk and Ray, is unlikely to ever gain wide acceptance. As an academic hypothesis, it is interesting, but it is not parsimonious. It is far simpler to imagine myths accreting around an actual person. Perhaps, once the myths have been peeled away, there will be nothing remaining, but to ignore the simplest hypothesis that covers all the available data is to restrict investigation in its own right.

Quote:
Good response.

Thank you, Kelly.

Quote:
Another good response. Mine would have been more like, "Waah! They don't like my fairy tale!"

Thank you again.

I'll leave it to the lurkers to decide which response more closely approximates the voice of reason. There is nothing rational about ad homs. Again, your proposed response contradicts your earlier assertion on how you treat others. Emotional appeals are, by their very nature, irrational. On the other hand, they can be quite effective. As expressed in your blasphemy challenge to abandon fear of supernatural punishments, for example.

I do not argue against emotional appeals, but rather against irrational appeals to emotion. In the same sense I do not argue against faith, merely faith in the supernatural. There is a profound difference. A purely rational life is only half lived. We evolved with emotions; they are part of what makes us human, and to deny them is to dehumanize ourselves. The distinction between rational faith or rational appeals to emotion and their irrational counterparts lies in how they are managed, in how we subordinate them to our reason. There is a place for faith in our fellow humans that does not include faith in their supernatural gods. There is a place for the joy of discovery that does not include the "peace that surpasses all understanding."

The misguided theist is as human as any of us, and subject to the same irrational foibles as we are. We know, however, that these irrationalities are deconstructable only by the power of reason. That is our advantage, and there is no benefit in giving up the home field.

As ever, Jesse

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Sapient wrote: Quote: The

Sapient wrote:
Quote:
The 'Blasphemy Challenge' is a still-born project based on a fundamental misunderstanding of Scripture and the nature of sin and redemption. This is suggestive of a complete ignorance of the Bible even by your resident 'historian' and 'ancient texts expert'.

Go ahead, prove you believe what you're saying....

Say "I deny the existence of the Holy spirit."

What does this prove?!? I won't say "I deny the existence of God", even though it's not an "unforgivable sin". How would us saying "I deny the existence of the Holy Spirit" prove anything other than that we're willing to lie?

Face facts, you haven't created a challenge that commits the unforgivable sin. Christians know this, but you refuse to see it. It's not that we're worried about your challenge - it's just that it has about as much weight in upsetting us as your already vocal claim "I deny the existence of God". No more.

 

Sapient wrote:

Do you live in America? Because if we institute the challenge for Islam that we have been working on (which we'd like to do) we fear the backlash will be the burning of American cities by the Islamic community. We have been pondering our responsibility there for quite some time.

Are you being sarcastic in some way, responding to Petrov's claim that you wouldn't attack Islam as you do Christianity? Or are you seriously concerned that RRS has a large enough platform to cause Muslims to burn your cities?

I'd love to see what challenge you have in store. I hope it's a real one, unlike the blasphemy challenge.

On a side note, I'm going to be losing internet for about a week, so not sure when I'll be back to respond.


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croath wrote: Sure, I can

croath wrote:

Sure, I can see the irony of having a "minor" error in a title that speaks about major errors, and I can see the humor. But your response indicated some sort of points scoring victory.

It was a victory.  You were living in a glass house, threw a stone, and the glass cut your arm.  The point is, we all make mistakes, nobody is perfect. 

 

lao tzu wrote:

Your comment about his meds, by the way, stands in direct contradiction to your claim that you "do not treat others in that fashion."

Right because implying that someone needs meds (and he does) is the same thing as calling someone a whore who should be "ploughed" and part of a douchebaggery team of hate mongering irrational morons.  Yeah, I see the similarities...... fucking NOT!

 

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croath wrote: Sapient

croath wrote:

Sapient wrote:
Quote:
The 'Blasphemy Challenge' is a still-born project based on a fundamental misunderstanding of Scripture and the nature of sin and redemption. This is suggestive of a complete ignorance of the Bible even by your resident 'historian' and 'ancient texts expert'.

Go ahead, prove you believe what you're saying....

Say "I deny the existence of the Holy spirit."

What does this prove?!? I won't say "I deny the existence of God", even though it's not an "unforgivable sin". How would us saying "I deny the existence of the Holy Spirit" prove anything other than that we're willing to lie?

Think about it, I wont hold your hand.

 

Quote:
Face facts, you haven't created a challenge that commits the unforgivable sin.

Take the challenge then, prove it.

 

Quote:
Christians know this, but you refuse to see it.

No, actually not only do Christians not "know" this, there are actually quite a few that agree we are commiting the unforgivable sin including some scholars. Furthermore, Christians try to compartmentalize the reality and context of the unforgivable sin to reconcile their views with the dishonest views they've been taught by professional conmen (pastors, priests, etc).

Christians believe.... they don't know.

Quote:
It's not that we're worried about your challenge - it's just that it has about as much weight in upsetting us as your already vocal claim "I deny the existence of God". No more.

That's an awful lot of weight.

 

Sapient wrote:
Quote:

Do you live in America? Because if we institute the challenge for Islam that we have been working on (which we'd like to do) we fear the backlash will be the burning of American cities by the Islamic community. We have been pondering our responsibility there for quite some time.

Are you being sarcastic in some way, responding to Petrov's claim that you wouldn't attack Islam as you do Christianity? Or are you seriously concerned that RRS has a large enough platform to cause Muslims to burn your cities?

How many cartoonists drawing pictures of Allah did it take to get buildings in Denmark burnt down? It took one cartoonist.... imagine 20,000+ Rational Response Squad cartoonists getting works published everywhere including all of the resources we have to muster on the internet.

Christians want us to take on Islam, that's fine with me (we already do). Just don't come whining when our challenge is responsible for their childs school getting burnt down. Like I said, we take this responsibility seriously, we dont think it's fair to engage in an attack against a religion that will likely unfairly affect many more people than those involved in the project. But if Christians so desperately want to misdirect our attention so we stop attacking Yahweh, they might not like the response.

For the record... I deny the existence of Allah.

 

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Sapient wrote: lao tzu

Sapient wrote:

lao tzu wrote:

Your comment about his meds, by the way, stands in direct contradiction to your claim that you "do not treat others in that fashion."

Right because implying that someone needs meds (and he does) is the same thing as calling someone a whore who should be "ploughed" and part of a douchebaggery team of hate mongering irrational morons. Yeah, I see the similarities...... fucking NOT!

(You're not a psychiatrist, Brian, and even if you were, diagnosis over the internet is sufficient cause for delicensing.)

I know it was personal, but if you want to succeed on the public stage, you've got to grow a thicker skin. If you don't, the pros will literally eat you alive. There are a lot of ways to respond to heckling, but becoming offended is probably the least effective. The standard formula is to respond as if it's all between friends, and let the other guy become apoplectic at seeing his barbs fall down harmlessly.

Get a tape of O'Reilly's last appearance on Letterman and study it.

Never let them see you sweat. It's not his comment that's winning the day, it's your reaction to that comment.

Really, don't you think petrov might be doing a little adultery in his heart imagining infidel cock stroking deep up his ass? He's not angry with Kelly, he's jealous for the plow. He's got a thing for you dude. Try to find a way to let him down gracefully. Teenage crushes are devastating, and when you combine them with priestly admonitions against homoeroticism they can cause an existential crisis. Show some compassion.

As I said, there are a lot of ways to respond to heckling.

As ever, Jesse

p.s. Am I the only one who noted petrov's devolution into random snarling occurred only after his objections about the evolution of the bacterial flagellum were answered?

p.p.s. I'm still waiting for your permission to use your response to the WOTMR transcription I provided in the other thread, along with clarification of the issue I raised. My principle opponent in that discussion has fled the field, but I'd like to have the documentation on hand the next time the Nightline episode shows up. Thank you for your response.

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Sapient wrote:   Think

Sapient wrote:

 

Think about it, I wont hold your hand.

 

No, you point it out.  Usually when people in debate have a counterpoint, they make it.  Right now it seems you didn't read my comment. 

Quote:

Take the challenge then, prove it.

 I already answered this!!  Did you read what I wrote, or just jump straight to the "hand holding" comment, assuming that you can't be wrong?

Quote:
No, actually not only do Christians not "know" this, there are actually quite a few that agree we are commiting the unforgivable sin including some scholars.

Do you have a reference to any Christian scholar saying that this is the unforgivable sin?  Not that I believe it's impossible for a christian to agree with you, but I think it unlikely.  And by scholar, I assume you mean someone who has a Bachelor in Theology or some other relevant credentials (atheist or Christian).

   
Quote:
Quote:
It's not that we're worried about your challenge - it's just that it has about as much weight in upsetting us as your already vocal claim "I deny the existence of God". No more.

That's an awful lot of weight.

It definitely is, but you missed the point - it's no more weight than what you mistakenly call "the unforgivable sin". 

 

Sapient wrote:

How many cartoonists drawing pictures of Allah did it take to get buildings in Denmark burnt down? It took one cartoonist.... imagine 20,000+ Rational Response Squad cartoonists getting works published everywhere including all of the resources we have to muster on the internet.

 I can imagine, but it's not very frightening.  About as frightening as the mighty powers that RRS has mustered against Christianity (which is quite inconsiderable).  But still, Islam has surprised me before - as you pointed out, those cartoons drew a reaction *far* beyond their true weight.  They know how to blow something way out of proportion.  I just wasn't sure what you were trying to say last post.  Petrov had called you cowards for not being willing to treat Islam the same as Christianity.  Your response to that was to give evidence that you don't treat them the same...I wasn't sure if you unintentionally meant to support his point or not.

Quote:
Christians want us to take on Islam, that's fine with me (we already do). Just don't come whining when our challenge is responsible for their childs school getting burnt down. Like I said, we take this responsibility seriously, we dont think it's fair to engage in an attack against a religion that will likely unfairly affect many more people than those involved in the project. But if Christians so desperately want to misdirect our attention so we stop attacking Yahweh, they might not like the response.

As a Christian, I'm not the least worried about your focus on us.  I've come here because I enjoy discussing and debating, and saw that your debate with Ray and Kirk was quite poor.  The arguments that RRS wields are not new, they've been thrown at theists for centuries.  There is no way your rehash of old issues is going to convince people any more now than it has before.

If you criticise Islam, and get the reaction you think you'll draw, people will blame Islam, not you (and Muslims in Western countries will claim that Islam is peaceful, and that these reactions are not representative of true Islam).


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lao tzu wrote: (You're not

lao tzu wrote:

(You're not a psychiatrist, Brian, and even if you were, diagnosis over the internet is sufficient cause for delicensing.)

It seems that you do some internet diagnostics yourself a little later in this post, though. Seems that we're all susceptible to having opinions. Eye-wink 

Quote:
I know it was personal, but if you want to succeed on the public stage, you've got to grow a thicker skin. If you don't, the pros will literally eat you alive. There are a lot of ways to respond to heckling, but becoming offended is probably the least effective. The standard formula is to respond as if it's all between friends, and let the other guy become apoplectic at seeing his barbs fall down harmlessly.

We certainly didn't respond with the same level of animosity. And the "pros" would more than likely not speak that way, but even if they did, I find nothing wrong with responding to that. We take all kinds of criticism and ignore these types of people all the time--the difference here is that this is our forum (despite the fact that you say that we don't need to keep asserting that, it is relevent. Imagine the difference between somebody doing that in your house versus anywhere else) and he stepped WAY over the line. It ISN'T "between friends" as you put it. We will deal with people like that in whatever way we choose. Is it possible to sometimes take the "higher ground"--sure. Do we always want to--NO. I don't think that it is a matter of the right way vs. the wrong way. We even post criticisms that we receive on the board--it's not an issue of being overly sensitive. It's an issue of calling a spade a spade or an asshole an asshole. And effectiveness sometimes matters more depending on the setting. We like to look at each situation and deal with them individually. This isn't a situation similar to O'Reilly on Letterman, and we dealt with it the way that we did based on that.

Quote:
 

Really, don't you think petrov might be doing a little adultery in his heart imagining infidel cock stroking deep up his ass? He's not angry with Kelly, he's jealous for the plow. He's got a thing for you dude. Try to find a way to let him down gracefully. Teenage crushes are devastating, and when you combine them with priestly admonitions against homoeroticism they can cause an existential crisis. Show some compassion.

Freudian psychoanalysis, anyone? 



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lao tzu wrote: (You're not

lao tzu wrote:

(You're not a psychiatrist, Brian, and even if you were, diagnosis over the internet is sufficient cause for delicensing.)

Thanks, I wasn't aware of either of those points.

 

Quote:
I know it was personal, but if you want to succeed on the public stage, you've got to grow a thicker skin.

This statement is uncharacteristic of you. I've got thicker skin then anyone on this site. 3/4 of the people I know within activism woulda hid in a hole by now, instead I'm the behind the scenes man calming people down.

But you somehow know?

 

Quote:
If you don't, the pros will literally eat you alive. There are a lot of ways to respond to heckling, but becoming offended is probably the least effective.

How about laughing at them? That was my response. My text might convey some sort of emotion that you've misinterpreted, but I'm guessing you're not a psychologist, so the mistake is forgiven.

 

Quote:
The standard formula is to respond as if it's all between friends, and let the other guy become apoplectic at seeing his barbs fall down harmlessly.

Fuck standard formulas. Praise non conformity!

 

Quote:

Really, don't you think petrov might be doing a little adultery in his heart imagining infidel cock stroking deep up his ass? He's not angry with Kelly, he's jealous for the plow. He's got a thing for you dude. Try to find a way to let him down gracefully. Teenage crushes are devastating, and when you combine them with priestly admonitions against homoeroticism they can cause an existential crisis. Show some compassion.

Wait... are you a psychologist?

 

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When I pointed out that I

When I pointed out that I had recieved no responses, petrov went insane and had a physcotic breakdown.

you seem to be a nicer fellow, though, croath. Perhaps we could engage in a little debate? I swear, I possess all my normal mental faculties , and unlike petrov, I don't have temporal lobe epilepsy or pheocromocytoma.

My response to you morphed into this essay here:

http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/sapient/kill_em_with_kindness/7720

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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deludedgod wrote:

deludedgod wrote:

When I pointed out that I had recieved no responses, petrov went insane and had a physcotic breakdown.

you seem to be a nicer fellow, though, croath. Perhaps we could engage in a little debate? I swear, I possess all my normal mental faculties , and unlike petrov, I don't have temporal lobe epilepsy or pheocromocytoma.

My response to you morphed into this essay here:

http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/sapient/kill_em_with_kindness/7720

 

I haven't forgotten you! I'm just moving soon (7 hours!), and will lose internet for a little while, and got a few other things on my plate - so I've been confining myself to simpler responses.

 

I also want to respond to the bacterial flagellum comments when I get a chance. 


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kellym78 wrote: lao tzu

kellym78 wrote:
lao tzu wrote:

(You're not a psychiatrist, Brian, and even if you were, diagnosis over the internet is sufficient cause for delicensing.)

It seems that you do some internet diagnostics yourself a little later in this post, though. Seems that we're all susceptible to having opinions. Eye-wink

Read it again, but this time take the sentence that follows into consideration. Sorry, Kelly, that scores as a clean miss.

Quote:
Quote:
I know it was personal, but if you want to succeed on the public stage, you've got to grow a thicker skin. If you don't, the pros will literally eat you alive. There are a lot of ways to respond to heckling, but becoming offended is probably the least effective. The standard formula is to respond as if it's all between friends, and let the other guy become apoplectic at seeing his barbs fall down harmlessly.

We certainly didn't respond with the same level of animosity. And the "pros" would more than likely not speak that way, but even if they did, I find nothing wrong with responding to that. We take all kinds of criticism and ignore these types of people all the time--the difference here is that this is our forum (despite the fact that you say that we don't need to keep asserting that, it is relevent. Imagine the difference between somebody doing that in your house versus anywhere else) and he stepped WAY over the line. It ISN'T "between friends" as you put it. We will deal with people like that in whatever way we choose. Is it possible to sometimes take the "higher ground"--sure. Do we always want to--NO. I don't think that it is a matter of the right way vs. the wrong way. We even post criticisms that we receive on the board--it's not an issue of being overly sensitive. It's an issue of calling a spade a spade or an asshole an asshole. And effectiveness sometimes matters more depending on the setting. We like to look at each situation and deal with them individually. This isn't a situation similar to O'Reilly on Letterman, and we dealt with it the way that we did based on that.

Of course it's not between friends, and I didn't suggest it. I was speaking about handling a heckler, not inviting them over for tea and crumpets. I wasn't telling you how to handle him either; I was addressing options.

Quote:
Quote:

Really, don't you think petrov might be doing a little adultery in his heart imagining infidel cock stroking deep up his ass? He's not angry with Kelly, he's jealous for the plow. He's got a thing for you dude. Try to find a way to let him down gracefully. Teenage crushes are devastating, and when you combine them with priestly admonitions against homoeroticism they can cause an existential crisis. Show some compassion.

Freudian psychoanalysis, anyone?

Context is king.

Sapient wrote:
lao tzu wrote:

(You're not a psychiatrist, Brian, and even if you were, diagnosis over the internet is sufficient cause for delicensing.)

Thanks, I wasn't aware of either of those points.

No charge. But I am accepting donations at my paypal account.

Quote:
Quote:
I know it was personal, but if you want to succeed on the public stage, you've got to grow a thicker skin.

This statement is uncharacteristic of you. I've got thicker skin then anyone on this site. 3/4 of the people I know within activism woulda hid in a hole by now, instead I'm the behind the scenes man calming people down.

But you somehow know?

Anyone other than me, perhaps. I'm not sure what's characteristic of me, but I do know you've got to pretty much take an axe to my pet kitten to get a rise out of me. Not that I'm suggesting anyone put it to the test.

*insert sardonic smiley holding a shotgun protectively over defenseless kitten*

Okay, I didn't mean to deny you props. I liked the way you handled yourself on Nightline, and petrov's comments were way over the top. I don't think there are many boards that wouldn't have banned him immediately. Still, as a writer myself, I have to say it was damn well written. I'd like to take him on some time in a game of dirty dozens. I won't say which way to bet, but I'm guessing between petrov and me, only one of us is an ex-sailor.

I'll tell you a secret, though. The closest he came to offending me was in lumping in Don Knuth, a personal friend of mine, with the fundys. Don really is a an impressive mathematician and computer scientist. He wrote most of TeX himself, the standard formatting tool for math and science journals and the format generally required for submission. If you ever get the chance, pick up a copy of his "Surreal Numbers." You can read it as a novel, but if you can follow through with the example problems, you'll find it an excellent tool for sharpening your reason.

Quote:
Quote:
If you don't, the pros will literally eat you alive. There are a lot of ways to respond to heckling, but becoming offended is probably the least effective.

How about laughing at them? That was my response. My text might convey some sort of emotion that you've misinterpreted, but I'm guessing you're not a psychologist, so the mistake is forgiven.

B...b...but ... I still feel guilty! Damn, I was hoping to be sent to Kelly's room for penance.

Yeah, there was something about that "fucking not" that might have thrown me off. Text is a poor vehicle for tone of voice or facial expression, and I'm personally and professionally opposed to wimping out with smileys and cookie cutter gif files.

Quote:
Quote:
The standard formula is to respond as if it's all between friends, and let the other guy become apoplectic at seeing his barbs fall down harmlessly.

Fuck standard formulas. Praise non conformity!

Do you practice what you preach? Let's see ...

Quote:
Quote:

Really, don't you think petrov might be doing a little adultery in his heart imagining infidel cock stroking deep up his ass? He's not angry with Kelly, he's jealous for the plow. He's got a thing for you dude. Try to find a way to let him down gracefully. Teenage crushes are devastating, and when you combine them with priestly admonitions against homoeroticism they can cause an existential crisis. Show some compassion.

Wait... are you a psychologist?

Oh well. Show some appreciation for art at least. Step close and look at the brush strokes.

I'm imagining petrov is history by now, by his decision or the staff's, so I'll show you some of the detail here. petrov betrayed himself in a number of ways as a fundamentalist and biblical literalist. As a former fundy, even after most of three decades, I can still recognize the stamp. His attack on Kelly, and his references to defiling scripture were flare lit tipoffs, and provided grist for the mill. So I fashioned a short homoerotic passion play, incorporating Kelly's "waaaah" in the process. Homophobia runs deep in fundys.

No, I'm not any kind of psychologist outside the practical version needed for high level sales and marketing. By profession, I am currently a writer. By training, though, I'm an (abstract) mathematician, with a dissertation in algebraic coding theory.

As ever, Jesse

 

Brian, can I have your permission to quote your response to the transcription? What's going on? I really thought the request would be pro forma. If you've some kind of issue, please let me know, either in private or in thread. Thanks.

 

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deludedgod wrote: When I

deludedgod wrote:

When I pointed out that I had recieved no responses, petrov went insane and had a physcotic breakdown.

Hey!  I wanted credit for that kill myself. 

croath wrote:

I also want to respond to the bacterial flagellum comments when I get a chance.

I'd appreciate that.  I'm off for the night myself, but I'll be checking back in for responses sometime tomorrow I guess.  Sorry about hijacking your thread.

As ever, Jesse 

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lao tzu wrote: Am I the

lao tzu wrote:
Am I the only one who noted petrov's devolution into random snarling occurred only after his objections about the evolution of the bacterial flagellum were answered?

I didn't notice that, especially because his rants were directed towards me. I did suspect he had lost an argument though.


croath
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deludedgod wrote:   My

deludedgod wrote:

 

My response to you morphed into this essay here:

http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/sapient/kill_em_with_kindness/7720

 Have read what you wrote, and it was certainly a good read.  I think though that your arguments don't achieve what you want.  Before I formulate a full response though, can you please clarify what you mean when you say "there is no rational epistemology for supernatural because if there was, it would be natural"?  ie, why do you think that this would make it natural?  I'd like to see your reasoning.  You discuss this more in the next paragraph, but I don't see any reason to accept what you're saying.

If it helps to see why I'm having difficulty, maybe replace the word "supernatural" with "spiritual" and see if it makes a difference to what you're arguing.


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croath wrote: Before I

croath wrote:

Before I formulate a full response though, can you please clarify what you mean when you say "there is no rational epistemology for supernatural because if there was, it would be natural"?

Supernatural is only defined by what it is not. Atemporal, non-material etc. By eliminating all the possible things that supernatual could be, there is nothing left for supernatural to be. It is a meaningless concept. It literally means nothing. To say something is immaterial, atemporal, is to say that it is not. That was what todangst pointed out. By having only negative ontologies, supernatural is eliminated from the universe of discourse.

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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I thought you were saying

I thought you were saying something else - that even if we assume that to say "supernatural" is not to say "nothing", that providing a rational epistemology would just make the "supernatural" to being "natural".

 But if that's part of your other argument about negative ontology, then that's fine, I can respond to it as part of that.


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petrov wrote: This is a

petrov wrote:
This is a vile, rude and hostile site. There is absolutely no need for any of the scorn, hate and vitriol being poured on Christians and Christianity by RRS. As I already stated, you are all a bunch of cry-baby hypocrites. You like to dish it out but when you are met with a response that combines aggression and intellect you fold and cry foul. You are a coward -- a half-educated, infantile and poorly-parented, moronic coward.

I kicked your ass so badly that you can't even respond, and you call other people even more educated than myself cowards and half educated? What a idiotic hypocrite you are. Go cry to your mommy child, we don't want your stupidity infecting the intelligent theists we have here.

Proud Canadian, Enlightened Atheist, Gaming God.


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Thank you for taking the

Thank you for taking the time to read my essay. A request I have is that when you respond, that you do so in the thread of the essay itself, as opposed to this thread.

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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