OT: Did you read this book? Any good arguments against it?

Lazerus
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Post by Lazerus »

Narnian wrote:
Lazerus wrote:There's no such thing as an evangelical athiest.

First, because the term "evangelical" refers to a belief in god, so even if Atheism was a religion, it cannot be evangelical, because it dosn't involve a god.

Second, because atheism is not a belief, it is a lack of belief. Ergo, not a religion.
Obviously you haven't read this article I refered to earlier in Wired, The Church of the Non-Believers.
He does not speak for Athiesm in general.
"They built you a statue and told you to pray,
Built you a temple and locked you away,
But they never told you the price that you'd pay,
All the things you could have done,
Only the good die young."

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Axelgear
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Post by Axelgear »

Lazerus wrote:

1. China has exploited its own people and its people have rebelled despite being attacked by armed troops with tanks. Hmm... Where have I heard this... People being exploited rising up and being willing to stand up to gunfire and tanks even with impossible odds... Korea maybe? Vietnam? Russia? Afghanistan? Iraq?
What doest this have to do with the middle east?
2. See point one. The exploitation started the cause, but terrorism against United States forces was minimal. Terrorist attacks happened against US targets against rarely, and the body count was equally minimal. It is only after invading the nation and committing further, more direct problems has the US recieved more vehement opposition.
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say they always hated us, and the invasion just made it easier for them to express that. Or did I imangine those video's of cheering crowds after 9/11?
3. Yes, they share their religion, it's a part of their culture, what's your point? They are bound by more factors than religion, but it's so easy to blame just ONE factor so long as it supports your point isn't it? I stated very clearly that they share a culture, a language, a goal. Would you side with your brother or a stranger?
I'm saying religion is an undeniably large factor espically given the number of theocracy's in the reigon.
4. Actually, it should be pointed out that the IRA targets Government officials. The official branches of the IRA, both militant and formal, deny connection to people who bomb churches. For one, it's just bad PR to be known as child killers, and second, acknowledging yourself of murderers of peace-bringers is a bad way to get acknowledgement.
What they are willing to publicly admit to doing is not my concern. The fact that it *keeps happening* is proof enough.
5. You are saying I am committing actions opposed to rationality and human decency. That is immorality.
Okay, sure. Yes.
6. Actually, if you've followed half the stuff I've said here, I am anything but a sheep. In the, what, month I have posted here, I have argued for what I believe is right. If I was a blind sheep, I'd believe that Earth was the center of the Universe, that Evolution is fantasy, and that the Universe is only 5000 years old or so, but I know that these are falsehoods. My life has been influenced by the idea of what I believe is good and right, and what I believe is good and right has been drawn from these ancient ideals. Feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, give shelter to those without it, clothe the naked, give hope to those who have none, defend those who cannot protect themselves... Do I make myself clear on these things? These values have been handed down for a long time, and the reason for that is that they make people generally good at heart.

And logical is in quotations because it is what seems most rational to your mind. What you accept as evidence or do not accept builds up your world view. Logical, in this particular case, is very sadly open to interpretation, and is not as cut-and-dry as it is in most situations.
Yeah, that's nice. You havn't actually said anything at all. What's your point here?
6. The truth is not warm and fuzzy because people choose not to make it so. Every day in the news I hear of death, destruction, suffering, but what I wish to hear is of more people like Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresea, and other modern-day saints (Regardless of religion, in this case a saint is merely someone who does lots of good deeds). To hear of these people is truth, to know that all human beings are capable of good is truth, and to appreciate the gifts life gives us is truth. The truth is not always warm and fuzzy, to be sure, but I'm happier enjoying the good in the world and spreading such enjoyment to others than languishing in the idea that humans are stupid.
Way to miss the point. What I was trying to say is that an ugly truth is always preferable to a pretty lie.
And one last point Lazerus... In the end, what does the difference make? At the end of the day, if you convinced everyone in the world that there is no God, what would it change?
Fewer abortion clinic bombings, people not wasting their lives on false ideals, the end of the Jihad, the end of religous opposition to science, the end of religon trying to force people to obey their standard of morality, a more rational world...

I can go on like that for a few hours.
People are naturally going to shy from logic because ignorance is all pervasive, ever present, and will never be stamped out entirely.
So because we can't completly fix the problem, we shoudln't try.

Way to quit when the going gets tough.
o suggest God is at the heart of such things is to deny things like the Communist Revolutions, to deny the Cold War, to deny World War I and II, to deny every single colonial war out there.
I said religion has caused wars. Not that religion is responsible for all wars.
The list goes on and on and on... Even today, wars with sides that change every day rage in Africa, and Religion does not spur them on. God cannot be the scapegoat here, and here it is most obvious the cause: The hunger for power.
And ideology. Yes, people kill eachother for power and money. They also kill eachother due to cultural, political, and yes, religous differences.
God isn't to blame for war. We are. All humans are. We cause the wars, we end them. God just gets the blame.
There is no god, he cannot be at fault. Religon, not the sky-fairy, is responsible for many wars, though not all.

Neither logic nor experience tells us that we can eventually know all the facts.
Why not? Given that the universe obeys a finite number of logical rules, all of which can be expressed mathmaticly, through extended observation it would be possible to codify and express all of those rules.

It'll take a long time, granted.

Or is it?
I was about to post a scathing reply to this. But, I can't.

You believe in narnia. I can't make fun of that. It's like trying to mock a clown. What am I going to do, laugh at his red nose and big shoes? It's so absurd it just can't be mocked.
How is this basic, renowned principle stated outside of laymen's terms? I would really like to know what this elementary axiom is that all scientists adhere to. Perhaps you have this principle in the Latin!!! <3
Fine, the more formalized version would be "Any proposed hypothosis that explains an observed phenominon must be considered false until it has made a repeatable, testable prediction."

I did not realize that Science made value judgments as to whether something was worthless or not. No doubt this is determined through meticulous study via telescopes and test tubes!
It does. You don't like it, that's too bad. Think of it this way.

Lets say I wrote down all the rules for how gravity works and said "Gravity works this way." Okay, fair enough.

Lets say I wrote down all the rules for how gravity works and said "Gravity works this way, and the reason it works that way is because all the particles are pulled by tiny, subatomic unicorns." Well, technicly, everything I've written down still describes gravity, but you see how the unicorn bit didn't really add anything to the theroy?
We shouldn't try to eliminate anything. All prescriptive suggestions cannot be proven or disproven valid, and are therefore worthless, as you stated.
Um....W.T.F? What are you trying to said I said, exactly?
rther, even excusing your silliness about what we define as worthless, I would like very much to know why beliefs which catalyze destruction should be eliminated. Because you do not want them to cause destruction? What study or syllogism suggests that destruction ought to necessitate elimination?
Fine then. I'd like to start a new church, our central belief is that the only way to know the mind of god is to drag people out into the street, beat the shit out of them, and burn their houses down.

But, since it's silly to want to get rid of distructive beliefs, your okay with that, right?
Finally, the term religion encompasses a multiplicity of beliefs. You cannot state that a classification is inherently erroneous because it does not intend to present factual information; 'religion' can no more be erroneous than 'colors' can be. If you mean to say that religion is defined as a belief which is inherently erroneous, and you suppose that the Abrahamic religions (i.e. the important ones) are inherently erroneous, I would like it shown how.
Science holds that anything that dosn't make predictions can't be proven or disprove, and thus is wrong.
Individuals were persecuted during Communism and the Reign of Terror in order to maintain secular humanism or atheism, often with violent means.
Point conceded. But I would still say far, far fewer people have been killed for athiesm then any major religon.
Why would it be wrong? What syllogism proves the golden rule? And what bodily organ senses evil? What authority do you rest your ethical standard on? For I assure you, neither Reason nor Experience will bend to take your hand.
Because that's the definition of morality you dummy. You can call it whatever you want, but if your moral system dosn't have something more then "I do what I want" it is not morality. Morality is a code of behavior that limits what you can do out of respect for others.
I think there is nothing particularly foolish about following the advice of our seniors, even if they happen to be dead. You treat good and evil as if good is something one can reason out, and evil is something one can taste like pudding. You cannot look at a moral maxim through a microscope, and you cannot pet a platitude like a puppy. You may question the sage on whatever grounds, but it can never be grounded enough to be superior. For morality is subjective, unless it is grounded in Him. And if it is subjective, your concept of right and wrong is no more informed than the person who gained his ethical standard from some ancient ancestor or crumbling commandment.
No....no. You've fogotten the Divine Command theroy.

It goes something like this. God says genocide is wrong right? Is genocide just wrong, or is it only wrong because god says it's wrong?

If it's just wrong, you don't need god for it to be wrong.

If it's only wrong because god says it's wrong, they god could change his mind the next day about it, and you would have to obey that. So adding "God says it" to the mix dosn't make your system of morality any less arbitrary.
SHEESH, this is getting long...

1. Did you READ either of the last two names?

2. You actually just agreed with me really. The people were exploited beforehand, and now the beehive has been hit with a rock.

3. Yes, but what of the Wars that start on a daily basis in Africa? Far more wars, far fewer religions, and barring the recent Sudan thingamajiggy, no religious group has done anything but assist the wounded and suffering.

4. That's just stupid... There are groups out there who claim to be atheists but you have said they don't speak for atheists as a whole. Therefore can there not be people who claim to be of the IRA but they do not speak for it?

5. So you ARE saying it's immoral? You're saying it's immoral to believe in something that declares you should spread kindness and aid those in need?

6. But to those who believe in religion, it isn't a lie. You have no more proof than they do (Or at least you choose not to accept their proof), and therefore you each have your reasons to accept it. And either way, I'll take my pretty interpretation over your ugly one, thank you very much.

7. But... That's not the case. The Abortion Clinic Bombings are a direction of natural rage. People with a disposition to violence will inevitably just find a target for it, it doesn't matter what. It's like saying Video Games cause violence; they don't, they just give direction to those seeking an outlet. As to the religious opposition to science, if you mean Stem Cell Research, that's stupid as Stem Cell Research can be done on Chord Cells anyway. It is a result of ignorance, not of religion; people, regardless of being religious or not, oppose Stem Cell Research because they oppose Abortion, plain and simple. And as to the religious "Standard of Morality", those standards of morality speak out against murder, rape, and general cruelty. If those things aren't wrong, I don't want to be right.

8. Just because Atheism hasn't had its turn at being the big bad monster doesn't mean it won't be. As the old saying goes "If it happens once, it can happen again."

9. The Universe is ever changing and ever moving. The only way to know EVERYTHING is to travel back in time, examine everything first hand, then end the universe instantaneously so that it never changes any more. That's more just semantics really but all the same...

10. Religion is not the cause of war. Even when it is held up as the banner, it is not the cause. Even the Crusades, the most touted Holy War in all known history, was not for religion, but rather money. While Religion and "Divine Right" were used as excuses, the truth was that the Church wanted money and it knew how to get it by raising religion as an excuse. Osama Bin Laden raises Islam as justification, but justification for what? What caused him to want to START such an action? People look at the excuse, the banner, the flag being waved, but never what caused that flag to be raised in the first place.
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Wanderwolf
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Post by Wanderwolf »

The JAM wrote:I haven't seen "Dark Dungeons". What's it about?
"Dark Dungeons" is a chick tract; that is to say, a religious pamphlet produced by Jack Chick. In "Dark Dungeons", it is predicated that all of the rumors and urban legends about role-playing games such as Dungeons and dragons are true. That, in fact:

-RPG rulebooks contain actual magical spells.
-RPGs are an introduction to Satanism.
-RPGs drive people to suicide.

If you read the pamphlet, you'll see how utterly ridiculous the thing is.

Yours truly,

The well-read,

Wanderer

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Axelgear
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Post by Axelgear »

Yeah, Chick tracts annoy me... He usually talks of stuff he doesn't understand...
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Axelgear wrote:Yeah, Chick tracts annoy me... He usually talks of stuff he doesn't understand...
Heh. From the available evidence, in Chick's case that would include dressing himself in the morning. This gives him a wide range of ignorance to choose from.
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Post by Lazerus »

Axelgear, for gods sake, BREAK UP THE QUOTES. Quote what bit I said that your responding too, then respond to it. Don't quote all of what I said and then list bullet points. It's called formatting, look it up.

-------
1. Did you READ either of the last two names?
Yes, but I still don't see what that has to do with the number of theocracies in the middle east.
2. You actually just agreed with me really. The people were exploited beforehand, and now the beehive has been hit with a rock.
...which means they hated us beforehand and all the invasion has done is put our troops in a position where they can be hurt. Try to keep up. The attacks arn't due to more hate, their due to it being easier to express that hate.
3. Yes, but what of the Wars that start on a daily basis in Africa? Far more wars, far fewer religions, and barring the recent Sudan thingamajiggy, no religious group has done anything but assist the wounded and suffering.
Actually, a fair number of wars, such as the one Ethiopia has just gotten into this month, were started by religion.
4. That's just stupid... There are groups out there who claim to be atheists but you have said they don't speak for atheists as a whole. Therefore can there not be people who claim to be of the IRA but they do not speak for it?
No. No. No. :shifty:

Secular Humanism =/= Atheism. Most atheists are secular humanists, but not all. What this guy is doing is saying "I'm going to start a church!", that's ONE GUY saying it. It's like if I said "Well, I'm a christian, and I believe god is a toad." That dosn't mean all christians believe that.

However, SIGNIFICANT NUMBERS of IRA people blow up churches, not one maverick.
5. So you ARE saying it's immoral? You're saying it's immoral to believe in something that declares you should spread kindness and aid those in need?
No, I believe it's immoral to believe in something that can readily be shown to be untrue, espically when it hurts people, as religion can.
6. But to those who believe in religion, it isn't a lie. You have no more proof than they do (Or at least you choose not to accept their proof), and therefore you each have your reasons to accept it. And either way, I'll take my pretty interpretation over your ugly one, thank you very much.
I have to accept it as much as I have to accept a mental patiants claim he is napoleon.

And if you would rather have the lie, your hopeless in any event. Why don't you just take enough drugs that your really happy and divorced from reality?
7. But... That's not the case. The Abortion Clinic Bombings are a direction of natural rage. People with a disposition to violence will inevitably just find a target for it, it doesn't matter what. It's like saying Video Games cause violence; they don't, they just give direction to those seeking an outlet. As to the religious opposition to science, if you mean Stem Cell Research, that's stupid as Stem Cell Research can be done on Chord Cells anyway. It is a result of ignorance, not of religion; people, regardless of being religious or not, oppose Stem Cell Research because they oppose Abortion, plain and simple. And as to the religious "Standard of Morality", those standards of morality speak out against murder, rape, and general cruelty. If those things aren't wrong, I don't want to be right.
You have any proof to back this up? Someone says "I blew up the clinic because of X". So I say "X is the cause for them blowing up the clinic." Do you have any proof all religious bombers are just phyco's anyway?

Because you see, it's a funny thing, there are a lot more bombers in the muslem world, where religion encourages it. So unless you think muslems are somehow geneticly-predisposed to be crazy, you have to admit religion plays a factor.
8. Just because Atheism hasn't had its turn at being the big bad monster doesn't mean it won't be. As the old saying goes "If it happens once, it can happen again."
Yes, it does. Secular Humanism =/= Atheism, and atheism isn't a belief, it's a lack of belief.
9. The Universe is ever changing and ever moving. The only way to know EVERYTHING is to travel back in time, examine everything first hand, then end the universe instantaneously so that it never changes any more. That's more just semantics really but all the same...
The rules that govern it, not every position of every particle. Duh.
10. Religion is not the cause of war. Even when it is held up as the banner, it is not the cause. E
Proof to back this up?
"They built you a statue and told you to pray,
Built you a temple and locked you away,
But they never told you the price that you'd pay,
All the things you could have done,
Only the good die young."

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Axelgear
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Post by Axelgear »

Lazerus wrote: Yes, but I still don't see what that has to do with the number of theocracies in the middle east.
It actually has to do with people revolting and rising up against others for more reasons than religion. Theocracies are there because the people want them to be. Pretty much EVERYONE in the region is a Muslim, so I fail to see why they should not have a Muslim government. It's almost 99% Muslim (Generalizing but it is probably quite near that) in these nations, so it does make sense.
Lazerus wrote: ...which means they hated us beforehand and all the invasion has done is put our troops in a position where they can be hurt. Try to keep up. The attacks arn't due to more hate, their due to it being easier to express that hate.
Actually, United States military bases have existed in the region for years. October 28th, 1991, three car bombs were used to attack United States Military Personel in Turkey. 1993, Truck Bomb into the World Trade Center. 1995, US Military Headquarters in Ridyah, Saudi Arabia. Heck, long before that in 1983, almost 250 American soldiers were killed in a SINGLE bombing in Beirut. Notice the attacks happened on viable targets long before the war. These people were exploited well before the war, and now the US invading has just intensified it. Now, unless for some reason their quota has just been upped, it seems to me that my whole idea of "Poking the bees nest" analogy seems to become more viable.
Lazerus wrote: Actually, a fair number of wars, such as the one Ethiopia has just gotten into this month, were started by religion.
Oh really? Can you tell me what started this conflict? Tell me exactly what the religious dispute is over, please.
Lazerus wrote: Secular Humanism =/= Atheism. Most atheists are secular humanists, but not all. What this guy is doing is saying "I'm going to start a church!", that's ONE GUY saying it. It's like if I said "Well, I'm a christian, and I believe god is a toad." That dosn't mean all christians believe that.

However, SIGNIFICANT NUMBERS of IRA people blow up churches, not one maverick.
Yet you say religion as a whole is the cause of many wars? So convenient you brand an entire group with the crimes of a few yet deny it for your own isn't it?

And by the way, the IRA disowned any member who claimed to have shot members of the Clergy or bombed a Church. They did not claim responsibility, and they removed them from the group. The IRA is also a group of several thousand, if not tens of thousands. There have also only been around six or seven people in the recognized PIRA (The military branch) who have attacked a Church or Church Member (Not just bombing, shooting too), all of whom were barred from the group. 7 out of, say, 10,000 is 0.0007. Apparently, you're branding the entire group for an insignificant fraction.
Lazerus wrote: No, I believe it's immoral to believe in something that can readily be shown to be untrue, espically when it hurts people, as religion can.

I have to accept it as much as I have to accept a mental patiants claim he is napoleon
Religion doesn't hurt people, people hurt people. Stupidity hurts people. Ignorance hurts people. Blood lust, anger, violence, greed, these kill people. Last I recall, going to a building every sunday, giving to charity, and trying not to harm others didn't hurt anyone.

And if that is the case, do I have to accept your beliefs?
Lazerus wrote: And if you would rather have the lie, your hopeless in any event. Why don't you just take enough drugs that your really happy and divorced from reality?
But... It ISN'T a lie to me. God is as real as you or I. Whether you believe it or not doesn't change a thing for me.
Lazerus wrote: You have any proof to back this up? Someone says "I blew up the clinic because of X". So I say "X is the cause for them blowing up the clinic." Do you have any proof all religious bombers are just phyco's anyway?

Because you see, it's a funny thing, there are a lot more bombers in the muslem world, where religion encourages it. So unless you think muslems are somehow geneticly-predisposed to be crazy, you have to admit religion plays a factor.
But you fail to realise that what is held up as the shield is not always the reason. If the person says "I blew up the clinic because of X", then ask "How did X get you to do this?" If the person says "I heard a voice in my head that told me to do it", would you call this religion or schizophrenia? If the person says "I was told to by someone else", would you call this religion or a para-military organization? The justification for it doesn't change the causes behind it. Justification and Cause mean VERY different things.

And actually, you will note that in Ireland, where religion OPPOSES death, there were bombers, shooters, and rioters to beat the ban. It's not a genetic predisposition, it's poverty and ignorance! Ireland, until a few years ago, was a poverty ridden muck hole. Suddenly, a big economic boom, and the violence dissapears. Coincidence, you say? But Ireland is not independent, headway has not really been made on such a regard, religious differences abound, but the ignorance and poverty dissapears and the violence ends. Miraculous how often those coincidences happen isn't it?
Lazerus wrote: Yes, it does. Secular Humanism =/= Atheism, and atheism isn't a belief, it's a lack of belief.
Lack of belief is a belief. Any time you declare a stance on something, you have taken an interest in it, and therefore have a belief/opinion on the issue.
Lazerus wrote: The rules that govern it, not every position of every particle. Duh.
But then you cannot know every rule as you have not observed everything, now have you?
10. Religion is not the cause of war. Even when it is held up as the banner, it is not the cause. E
Proof to back this up?[/quote]

I think I've proven it eloquently actually.
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Post by Kerry Skydancer »

Axelgear wrote:
And actually, you will note that in Ireland, where religion OPPOSES death, there were bombers, shooters, and rioters to beat the ban. It's not a genetic predisposition, it's poverty and ignorance! Ireland, until a few years ago, was a poverty ridden muck hole. Suddenly, a big economic boom, and the violence dissapears. Coincidence, you say? But Ireland is not independent, headway has not really been made on such a regard, religious differences abound, but the ignorance and poverty dissapears and the violence ends. Miraculous how often those coincidences happen isn't it?
And that's it, right there. That is exactly it. And for all of Bush's missteps and flounderings, this is ultimately what the man is trying to do in the Middle East, and that is what the Mainstream Media and the leftists and the isolationist quislings in his own party are trying to keep him from doing. Bush can be damned chuckleheaded at times, but he's got the basic idea right.
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Post by Lazerus »

It actually has to do with people revolting and rising up against others for more reasons than religion. Theocracies are there because the people want them to be. Pretty much EVERYONE in the region is a Muslim, so I fail to see why they should not have a Muslim government. It's almost 99% Muslim (Generalizing but it is probably quite near that) in these nations, so it does make sense.
So what? That has nothing to do with my point! There are a lot of theocracies in the middle east so religion there HAS A LOT TO DO WITH POLITICS! Including, in fact, ESPICALLY violence!

Actually, United States military bases have existed in the region for years. October 28th, 1991, three car bombs were used to attack United States Military Personel in Turkey. 1993, Truck Bomb into the World Trade Center. 1995, US Military Headquarters in Ridyah, Saudi Arabia. Heck, long before that in 1983, almost 250 American soldiers were killed in a SINGLE bombing in Beirut. Notice the attacks happened on viable targets long before the war. These people were exploited well before the war, and now the US invading has just intensified it. Now, unless for some reason their quota has just been upped, it seems to me that my whole idea of "Poking the bees nest" analogy seems to become more viable.
Are you honestly making the argument that sending hunderds of thousands of soliders over there dosn't make us more vulnerable to attack? By, you know, PUTTING HUNDERDS OF THOUSANDS OF SOLIDERS PLUS SUPPORT EQUIPMENT OVER THERE!?
Oh really? Can you tell me what started this conflict? Tell me exactly what the religious dispute is over, please.
One of the counties neighboring Ethopia has been fairly secular for years. A radical Islamist party has taken control of the government and declared their intent to form a theocracy. Given that Ethopia is largely secular, and has recieved "Convert or die" threats from this party before, they launched an immedeate pre-emptive strike to restore the old secular party to power.
Stupidity hurts people.
No it dosn't, people hurt people!

Please, you can say "....it dosn't, people hurt people!" for *anything*. Religion is a huge factor.
But... It ISN'T a lie to me. God is as real as you or I. Whether you believe it or not doesn't change a thing for me.
The fact that it's BS apprantly dosn't chage a thing for you either. :roll:
But you fail to realise that what is held up as the shield is not always the reason. If the person says "I blew up the clinic because of X", then ask "How did X get you to do this?" If the person says "I heard a voice in my head that told me to do it", would you call this religion or schizophrenia? If the person says "I was told to by someone else", would you call this religion or a para-military organization? The justification for it doesn't change the causes behind it. Justification and Cause mean VERY different things.
What's your point?

But then you cannot know every rule as you have not observed everything, now have you?


Holy FSM above your crazy.
I think I've proven it eloquently actually.
You've posted no information.
"They built you a statue and told you to pray,
Built you a temple and locked you away,
But they never told you the price that you'd pay,
All the things you could have done,
Only the good die young."

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Axelgear
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Post by Axelgear »

Lazerus wrote:So what? That has nothing to do with my point! There are a lot of theocracies in the middle east so religion there HAS A LOT TO DO WITH POLITICS! Including, in fact, ESPICALLY violence!
Actually, the theocracies have little to do with it. Let us try this a bit more scientifically, shall we?

Ireland-in-the-past Iraq

Poverty 1 1
Religious Tension 1 1
Old Grudges 1 1
Terrorism 1 1
Self Governance 1 1

Now, notice how similar they are? The 1's are what they have. Now let us look at part two.

Ireland today Iraq

Poverty 0 1
Religious Tension 1 1
Old Grudges 1 1
Terrorism 0 1
Self Governance 1 1

Now what is this? You remove poverty, and terrorism is gone. The strong religious tension is there, there are no apologies for old crimes... But conveniently Terrorism dissapears when poverty is removed.

It should also be noted that Iraq was not a theocracy. It has all the hallmarks of the other regions, a high Muslim populace, but it was a dictatorship; Saddam Hussein never claimed any religious banner. Notice that while there is a theocracy and a dictatorship, the region's economic factors don't change, and miraculously there is little to no difference the regions outlook. So, once again, no, theocracies don't cause the problem, the region's economic issues do.
Lazerus wrote: Are you honestly making the argument that sending hunderds of thousands of soliders over there dosn't make us more vulnerable to attack? By, you know, PUTTING HUNDERDS OF THOUSANDS OF SOLIDERS PLUS SUPPORT EQUIPMENT OVER THERE!?
Actually, America already had thousands of troops there. Notice that bombings happened ALL OVER the world before now, including in America, and the targets were as viable as any other. America invades, little resistance. America fires its translators. Resistance increases. America tortures prisoners. Here comes the Locust Swarm. Sense a pattern? Sure, bigger target of opportunity, but Iraqi troops surrendered by the thousands to US soldiers. If they were so willing to fight and die, why didn't they?
Lazerus wrote: One of the counties neighboring Ethopia has been fairly secular for years. A radical Islamist party has taken control of the government and declared their intent to form a theocracy. Given that Ethopia is largely secular, and has recieved "Convert or die" threats from this party before, they launched an immedeate pre-emptive strike to restore the old secular party to power.
And this is different from what happens all over because... Notice that these people who wanted power, not to spread their religion but power, pick up guns and take over. But if these people were to say "We're taking over the country and you can't stop us!", how would the people react? Not too well, I think. So they say "We're going to make this nation better for people like you!" and suddenly all is well. This is a POWER GRAB, religion being the justification, not the cause, once again.
Lazerus wrote: No it dosn't, people hurt people!

Please, you can say "....it dosn't, people hurt people!" for *anything*. Religion is a huge factor.
Stupidity DOES hurt people. It is plain and simple: Ignorance is the factor, not religion. Otherwise, how would you explain away any other war? If Religion is such a huge factor, why is there ANY war that does not involve it? It's because there are OTHER reasons! Find ANY war over religious differences and I am certain you will find that the true cause behind it has to do with something MUCH more material.
Lazerus wrote: The fact that it's BS apprantly dosn't chage a thing for you either. :roll:
So now you're reduced to name calling? I thought this was meant to be a logical person I was talking to.

Lazerus wrote: What's your point?
My point is that what CAUSED something is not the same as the justification for it. If you remove the cause, the incident doesn't happen in the first place; people just need something to assuage their guilt, and claiming the idea of divine right is the ultimate way to do that. Removing the justification won't change a thing, it'll just either make them find a new justification or they'll lose their conscience and become even more cold blooded.

Lazerus wrote: Holy FSM above your crazy.
See the thing about name calling.
Lazerus wrote:
I think I've proven it eloquently actually.
You've posted no information.
[/quote]

But I have. However, if you claim my argument is groundless, then so is yours, making it, by your own logic, false.
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Tom Mazanec
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Post by Tom Mazanec »

Playing Devil's Advocate:
http://www.theskepticalreview.com/articles-idx.html
I would like to see Ralph reply to these.
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Post by LoneWolf23k »

Lazerus wrote:Are you honestly making the argument that sending hunderds of thousands of soliders over there dosn't make us more vulnerable to attack? By, you know, PUTTING HUNDERDS OF THOUSANDS OF SOLIDERS PLUS SUPPORT EQUIPMENT OVER THERE!?
It's called "Taking the Fight to the Enemy". By fighting them over there, we don't have to fight them here.

Or, as it's more commonly said "The Best Defense is a Good Offense"

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Post by Axelgear »

Yes, but American troops were there beforehand. They didn't torture anyone or have translation issues then, and the attacks were minimal at most at that point.

If a terrorist is determined to kill someone, what makes you think travel time would dissuade them from doing it?
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Kerry Skydancer
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Post by Kerry Skydancer »

Axelgear wrote:Yes, but American troops were there beforehand. They didn't torture anyone or have translation issues then, and the attacks were minimal at most at that point.

If a terrorist is determined to kill someone, what makes you think travel time would dissuade them from doing it?
I am most curious as to where you are getting these claims of torture and poor translation, actually. Aside from the Abu Ghraib business (which the locals did -not- consider torture, having lived through the real thing) and a very few other isolated incidents, all of which are being prosecuted as crimes, where have US troops done anything that could be considered torture?

Note: Diatribes from Daily Kos or other pro-terrorist sites will not be considered 'evidence'.
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Post by Wanderwolf »

The "poor translation" is referenced here at CBS news: Nine Army linguists were discharged for being gay. (Seven violated "don't ask, don't tell"; the other two were caught together after lights out. Naughty, naughty...)

That was in 2002; more were discharged in 2003 and 2004, though the numbers at last began to drop.

I take issue with the idea that Iraqis are so desensitized that they wouldn't consider the actions of our forces at Abu Ghraib (among others) as torture: Some Iraqis take issue with that idea as well, it seems.

Then of course, there's Haditha... talk about "kill 'em all and let God sort 'em out"...

Yours truly,

The fact-finding,

Wanderer
Last edited by Wanderwolf on Mon Dec 25, 2006 11:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Axelgear
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Post by Axelgear »

Kerry Skydancer wrote:I am most curious as to where you are getting these claims of torture and poor translation, actually. Aside from the Abu Ghraib business (which the locals did -not- consider torture, having lived through the real thing) and a very few other isolated incidents, all of which are being prosecuted as crimes, where have US troops done anything that could be considered torture?

Note: Diatribes from Daily Kos or other pro-terrorist sites will not be considered 'evidence'.
If there's going to be anyone to ask why they're angry, you'd think the Terrorists would be the best people to ask. Still, I don't know any terrorist sites or magazines so that DOES inhibit this. Then again, I don't want to look at them either...

Wanderer put up pretty much what I was referring to exactly. The Iraqi's did consider it torture, most of all being the woman there. Women are not equals yet in that society, so having a women over a man and insulting him is spitting square in their face. If it was a choice of having a woman point and laugh at their genitals or having a man kick them there, they'd willingly take the kick over the laugh any day of the week.

There's other stuff, but I'm breaking away from this post for now to go make a Christmas Thread. Have fun!
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Post by Deckard Canine »

I think I've discovered an inconsistency in Lazerus. First he says that when something can be neither proven nor disproven, science favors an assumption of falsity. Then he says that religion can be shown to be untrue. Is it disprovable or not? If so, and if you think you can convince others that it is disproven, then it's high time you presented that disproof.

I spent much of my youth as an agnostic, as I was brought up to be, but started leaning to Christianity in college (Oberlin, of all places) and got baptized not long after. This was not due to a particular fondness of Christians or their ways; in fact, I used to get an icky taste in my mouth at the thought of such conversion. If I were religious out of pure wishful thinking, I would return to the Baha'i Faith in which I dallied in high school. Or possibly Buddhism.

My point is not that others ought to believe as I do. My point is that I arrived at my belief after much thought and justified fear of familial backlash. I may yet be wrong, as I've been before, but it's not a matter of ovinity.

Even if there turns out to be no God, religion has done some good work other than keeping some of us from acting like monsters. I've observed myself giving more to charity the more I think on God.

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Post by Sapphire »

Deckard Canine wrote:I think I've discovered an inconsistency in Lazerus. First he says that when something can be neither proven nor disproven, science favors an assumption of falsity. Then he says that religion can be shown to be untrue. Is it disprovable or not? If so, and if you think you can convince others that it is disproven, then it's high time you presented that disproof.
I don't mean to get involved in this debate, and wish to refrain from taking sides in this post. I wish only to point out that what you describe are different aspects of religion, one cannot be proven/disproven, the other some believe can be disproven. These are the belief in a higher power that we call 'God,' the other the tenets of observing that belief. In short, religion and organized religion, respectively.
I would have hoped to say something meaninful, or possible inciteful. But, alas.
How goes the world today? From right to left or left to right? Perhaps it runs round mad reels, turning in on itself only at long last to blow away with the leaves and gutter-trash.
How goes the world today? Top to Bottom or Bottom to Top? Perhaps it will rise high enough so that it may see the back of its own head, in a maddening tunnel of infinity.
How goes the world today? Clockwise or Counter? Perhaps it will spin itself mad, curling a spring-from into endlessness.
Or maybe, today, it will just stop.

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Post by TMLutas »

Axelgear wrote: Actually, the theocracies have little to do with it. Let us try this a bit more scientifically, shall we?

Ireland-in-the-past Iraq

Poverty 1 1
Religious Tension 1 1
Old Grudges 1 1
Terrorism 1 1
Self Governance 1 1

Now, notice how similar they are? The 1's are what they have. Now let us look at part two.

Ireland today Iraq

Poverty 0 1
Religious Tension 1 1
Old Grudges 1 1
Terrorism 0 1
Self Governance 1 1

Now what is this? You remove poverty, and terrorism is gone. The strong religious tension is there, there are no apologies for old crimes... But conveniently Terrorism dissapears when poverty is removed.

It should also be noted that Iraq was not a theocracy. It has all the hallmarks of the other regions, a high Muslim populace, but it was a dictatorship; Saddam Hussein never claimed any religious banner. Notice that while there is a theocracy and a dictatorship, the region's economic factors don't change, and miraculously there is little to no difference the regions outlook. So, once again, no, theocracies don't cause the problem, the region's economic issues do.
You're missing the very basic point that the IRA is not an Irish organization but rather a N. Ireland organization. The Catholic government of Ireland has been hunting down the IRA for decades. You're looking at the wrong economic figures or, if you insist that Ireland proper be included, you are looking at an incomplete economic picture because the economies of Ireland and N. Ireland are not in sync by any means.

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Post by Axelgear »

Actually, the IRA may operate in Northern Ireland and England, but the majority of its membership comes from all over Ireland, and not just the North.
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