Saturday, September 15, 2012

Director's Cut - James Brown music video - It's Man's Man's Man's World on Vimeo

Here is an awesome short film about Black America

Director's Cut - James Brown music video - It's Man's Man's Man's World
from SHOOT THE BOSS on Vimeo.

Director's Cut - James Brown music video - It's Man's Man's Man's World on Vimeo
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FacePalm of the Day - Debunking Christianity: I Doubt Rauser is Even Trying To Understand Me

It's amazing to me the lengths the readers who follow and ascribe value to John Loftus' blog will go through to excuse the failure of John Loftus' arguments. This posts as well as a few of the comments go a long way in answering the questions I have about whether or not Loftus' supporter really see the failure of his arguments or not. Short Answer: they don't. I think it is because he tells them what they want to hear and believe. Consider the following.

I have said that Dr. Randal Rauser is not being intellectually honest when it comes to his faith. This does not mean I think he's doing anything unethical or immoral. It means his faith blinds him from being honest with the arguments to the contrary. Let me try, yet once again, to persuade him to throw off his blinders with what I consider one of the dumbest rejoinders to my arguments I think I have ever heard. I do so in hopes he will see it for what it is, and then take seriously that this same blindness affects how he treats other arguments against his faith. I hope in vain though. Dr. Victor Reppert endorses what Rauser wrote, so hey, he's no different. Faith makes otherwise brilliant people stupid, and I mean this.

So if Dr Randal Rauser and Dr Victor Reppert are blinded by their faith, what is that blinds John Loftus?

They must hand out PhD's to almost anyone, is all I can say.

I think jealousy might be part of Loftus' problems (besides sin) because of the derision of Ph.D.'s. Loftus does not have one while Reppert and Rauser do have them. Does that mean that Loftus' opinions are stupid or lack more weight than theirs? Nope. His arguments fail on their own merits.

Let me show you this stupidity from a post Rauser wrote titled, "Is John W. Loftus 'dumber than a box of rocks'?" Warning, this is going to get ugly.
In The End of Christianity John W. Loftus describes the following Christian belief which he finds very implausible:
“That the highest created being known as Satan or the devil, led an angelic rebellion against an omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, omnipresent God … and expected to win. This makes Satan out to be suicidal, inexplicably evil, and dumber than a box of rocks.” (100)
So how could any creature be so dumb as to rebel against the supreme omnibenevolent creator of the universe? John definitely has a point: that is definitely implausible.

 I have seen Loftus make this argument more than once on this blog and to be honest I don't see how rejecting Jesus, as Loftus continues to do, is any smarter. It's the same thing as what Satan did. 

But now consider the following statement John made in his blog:
“If I was convinced Christianity is true and Jesus arose from the grave, and if I must believe in such a barbaric God, I would believe, yes, but I could still not worship such a barbaric God. I would fear such a Supreme Being, since he has such great power, but I’d still view him as a thug, a despicable tyrant, a devil in disguise; unless Christianity was revised.” [The source of this quote in context can be read here at the very end.]
Let’s spend some time chewing on this passage.

According to Christianity, God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent and omnibenevolent (that is, perfectly good). And worship is, minimally, the ascription of proper worthship to that deity. Incredibly, if that being exists John will refuse to worship that being. Thus we can paraphrase John’s position as follows:
“If I was convinced that an omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent and omnibenevolent God existed I would refuse to recognize the worship of that perfectly good God and would instead treat him as a despicable tyrant.”
Now wait a minute. John’s accusing Satan [Emphasis his] of being dumber than a box of rocks?

Rauser has a valid point. If Satan was dumb enough to go against an omnipresent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent  God - the God of the Bible, and Loftus is declaring that he would not worship the God of the Bible, then why not come to the same conclusion that Rauser did. I'd say that everyone who rejects God has something wrong with them. And since we all have and only God's saving power has blessed some of us to see the truth of our own stupidity.

In the comments below Rauser's post BlueDKnight said:
This is an uncharitable reading of Loftus. Charity would have us try to interpret him as saying that the God depicted in the Bible seems barbaric/despicable for letting certain things happen, and perhaps for actively doing certain things. Loftus is not saying he would go to battle with such a being and expect to win, which is what he attributes to Satan. He is simply saying he wouldn't worship him. Indeed he even says he would fear him (e.g., a despicable tyrant is not someone you fight, but someone you might privately fear).

This is a weak "gotcha" kind of thing.

Loftus had made a career in trying to "debunk" Christianity. His stated goals put him in opposition to God. He's fighting God all the way and of course he expects to win. He won't but just like Satan he's going to give it his best try. It's not a "gotcha" moment but another example of a bad argument from John Loftus. 

Clamat said to Randal,
You were eager to suggest John is “dumb as a box of rocks,” and figured out a way to do it: By reading without a reasonable measure of sophistication or honesty. Good luck with that.

John did not write “if I were a Christian.” John did not write “if God were omnibenevolent.” Had John written “If I was convinced God is omnibenevolent…God would be a barbaric, despicable, tyrant against whom I would rebel,” that would be inconsistent and difficult to defend. But that’s not what he wrote. You pay John the respect of assuming he’s not ignorant, why won’t you pay him the respect of assuming he chose to use particular words for a reason? To the extent those words may be ambiguous, why not read his words charitably (!) to determine the meaning he intended and argue against that meaning, instead of one you simply impose?

Agreed that Loftus was not agreeing that God was omnibenevolent but that was not the point Rauser was making. Satan rejected the God of the Bible. Loftus and other atheists do the same thing. One is just as stupid as the other. 

The initial, unstated question of the blog post was whether John would believe God exists if he was convinced “Christianity was true,” i.e., if he was convinced “Jesus arose from the grave[.]” The answer was yes, “I would believe, but I still could not worship such a barbaric God” because that God is demonstrably not omnibenevolent, rather he’s “a devil in disguise.” Would your position be any different had John had written: “If I was convinced [the fact claims of Christianity are] true and Jesus rose from the grave…I would believe, yes, but I could still not worship such a barbaric God[.]” (Do you see what I’ve been doing here? Using John’s actual words to determine what his other actual words were intended to mean? Ah, context.)

Sure wish Loftus and other would read the Bible with the same level of  "sophistication" and "honesty" they demand when other critique what they write. Belief in the Resurrection means that you will worship the God of the Bible. You cannot have one without the other because you will see God's omnibenevolence.  So we are back to rejecting God being a really stupid, stupid thing to do. 

The charge stands: You are narrowly reading a single phrase from John’s post entirely out of context and according to your unilateral definition of a single word in that phrase, in an effort to demonstrate an inconsistency in John’s thinking. No such inconsistency exists.

Rauser's charge does indeed stick because of the inconsistency of Loftus' misunderstanding what it means to worship and believe the God of the Bible.

With these two comments I don't have anything to add. They nail it. articulett has some great comments on Rauser's blog as well.

Although these rebuttals were written a year ago as of now, Dr. Victor Reppert recently said of Rauser's post that "This is a nice critique of Loftus."

When will these two Christian apologists become intellectually honest with their faith against the arguments to the contrary? The very fact that they feel led to concoct stupid straw man versions of our arguments, the very fact that they do not even try to understand what the arguments are, is a telling sign that they are most emphatically deluded.

Maybe providing good contrary arguments would help. Good luck finding some.   I think that there was a fundamental lack of understanding of just how bad off we are without God. The logic presented here illustrates how bankrupt intellect is without God's resources.

If instead they are seeking traffic from my links to their blogs when responding to such drivel, then this is a breach of their ethical responsibility. That is, if they knew this rejoinder to me was a non-sequitur and yet posted it anyway for the hits, I do charge them both with being unethical. How do you expect to be taken seriously by anyone at that point? You are willing to seriously weaken your own credibility for hits.

Non-sequitur does not equal an argument for which you have not defense against. No one should forget that. 

So which is it boys? Are ye stupid or unethical?

Christian, if you want someone who does not purposely misrepresent the arguments for faith before criticizing them, if you want someone who cares about truth rather than playing intellectual chess games, then do not listen to either of them. Listen to me.

I have found some very valuable insight from Loftus - of what not to do. 

Now boys, was it worth the hits?

Amazing how he does not even see that they are trying to help him. No one wants to see other people go to hell ignorantly. Paul was right
18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19 since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. 20 For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.
24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them. - Romans 1:18-32

Debunking Christianity: I Doubt Rauser is Even Trying To Understand Me
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Greatest Human and Digital Viruses of ALL Time

Greatest Human and Digital Viruses

Parting Shot: 'Baby Korra' Video Features Real Life Young Avatar - ComicsAlliance | Comic book culture, news, humor, commentary, and reviews

When they reboot the Last Air Bender movies (and they had better), they got to get the guy who put his toddler in that world!

Parting Shot: 'Baby Korra' Video Features Real Life Young Avatar - ComicsAlliance | Comic book culture, news, humor, commentary, and reviews
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