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the_ignored
SFN Addict

2557 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  09:41:58  Show Profile Send the_ignored a Private Message  Reply with Quote
An attempt to dismiss the skeptics' demands for empirical evidence for their god. Is it my imagination or is this argument really weak? As I said in my reply: it looks like the author is trying to build a justification for dismissing a need for empirical evidence.

I'm not even going to bother to quote; the whole thing smells like a strawman to me. I will, however, link to my reply here. I was up the whole night working, so you can judge if I'm making any sense.




>From: enuffenuff@fastmail.fm
(excerpt follows):
> I'm looking to teach these two bastards a lesson they'll never forget.
> Personal visit by mates of mine. No violence, just a wee little chat.
>
> **** has also committed more crimes than you can count with his
> incitement of hatred against a religion. That law came in about 2007
> much to ****'s ignorance. That is fact and his writing will become well
> know as well as him becoming a publicly known icon of hatred.
>
> Good luck with that fuckwit. And Reynold, fucking run, and don't stop.
> Disappear would be best as it was you who dared to attack me on my
> illness knowing nothing of the cause. You disgust me and you are top of
> the list boy. Again, no violence. Just regular reminders of who's there
> and visits to see you are behaving. Nothing scary in reality. But I'd
> still disappear if I was you.

What brought that on? this. Original posting here.

Another example of this guy's lunacy here.

Edited by - the_ignored on 12/28/2008 09:49:53

H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  11:22:51   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
This apologetic fails on two fronts. First, blind people lack a particular sense that seeing people possess. Unless the author can point to a specific faulty that atheists lack that affects their ability to "see" god, he's talking shit. Atheists and theists have access to the same sensory information. If one wishes to assert otherwise, evidence--not navel-gazing in the shower--would be required. Therefore, the correct analogy is not a blind person failing to see a planet that everyone else sees, but a sighted person claiming to see a planet that other equally-sighted people don't.

Second, there are plenty of non-magical explanations for the theist's internal experience, and most point to errors of cognition. Theists simply interpret their senses incorrectly. Look up Type I and Type II errors. Refusing to acknowledge the evidence that demonstrates theists are prone to faulty thinking is quite blind indeed.


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
Edited by - H. Humbert on 12/28/2008 11:28:05
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  11:53:55   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Personally, I love the way fundies create a false dichotomy of choice between their bigoted version of religion and atheism.

Like a card shark dealer "forcing" bad cards on opponents. Though detrimental to moderate religion, this dichotomy is to the clear advantage of us atheists, and we don't even have to be the ones to falsely create it.

As for the "injustice" done to the moderates, this could be considered a sort of karmic payback for their cowed silence during the wild ride the fundies have had for the last eight years or so.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  12:10:47   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It's a straw man, albeit a fairly complicated one. Piss gasoline on it and get the Zippo.

Of course, there could be an alternate explanation....


Thus, angels explained.






"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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the_ignored
SFN Addict

2557 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  16:42:43   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send the_ignored a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by H. Humbert

This apologetic fails on two fronts. First, blind people lack a particular sense that seeing people possess. Unless the author can point to a specific faulty that atheists lack that affects their ability to "see" god, he's talking shit. Atheists and theists have access to the same sensory information. If one wishes to assert otherwise, evidence--not navel-gazing in the shower--would be required. Therefore, the correct analogy is not a blind person failing to see a planet that everyone else sees, but a sighted person claiming to see a planet that other equally-sighted people don't.

Second, there are plenty of non-magical explanations for the theist's internal experience, and most point to errors of cognition. Theists simply interpret their senses incorrectly. Look up Type I and Type II errors. Refusing to acknowledge the evidence that demonstrates theists are prone to faulty thinking is quite blind indeed.




Thanks. I'm going to use this in my reply to that guy. Hell, it will be even kind of quoted. Should I make a link back to it?


EDIT: I've posted my comment. Let me know if you want any kind of attribution so I can mention you in any later comments.


>From: enuffenuff@fastmail.fm
(excerpt follows):
> I'm looking to teach these two bastards a lesson they'll never forget.
> Personal visit by mates of mine. No violence, just a wee little chat.
>
> **** has also committed more crimes than you can count with his
> incitement of hatred against a religion. That law came in about 2007
> much to ****'s ignorance. That is fact and his writing will become well
> know as well as him becoming a publicly known icon of hatred.
>
> Good luck with that fuckwit. And Reynold, fucking run, and don't stop.
> Disappear would be best as it was you who dared to attack me on my
> illness knowing nothing of the cause. You disgust me and you are top of
> the list boy. Again, no violence. Just regular reminders of who's there
> and visits to see you are behaving. Nothing scary in reality. But I'd
> still disappear if I was you.

What brought that on? this. Original posting here.

Another example of this guy's lunacy here.
Edited by - the_ignored on 12/28/2008 17:15:46
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  17:37:48   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Nah, no credit is needed. I just like discussing ideas. If others ever want to use some of the ideas presented in my posts to make a point in another conversation, they should feel free. It might even lead to better ideas.


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
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the_ignored
SFN Addict

2557 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  21:27:21   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send the_ignored a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Sigh...reading on to the posts that guy makes, it sounds like he's suffering from a mild case of "Sye's disorder". You can ask Dave about that one...

>From: enuffenuff@fastmail.fm
(excerpt follows):
> I'm looking to teach these two bastards a lesson they'll never forget.
> Personal visit by mates of mine. No violence, just a wee little chat.
>
> **** has also committed more crimes than you can count with his
> incitement of hatred against a religion. That law came in about 2007
> much to ****'s ignorance. That is fact and his writing will become well
> know as well as him becoming a publicly known icon of hatred.
>
> Good luck with that fuckwit. And Reynold, fucking run, and don't stop.
> Disappear would be best as it was you who dared to attack me on my
> illness knowing nothing of the cause. You disgust me and you are top of
> the list boy. Again, no violence. Just regular reminders of who's there
> and visits to see you are behaving. Nothing scary in reality. But I'd
> still disappear if I was you.

What brought that on? this. Original posting here.

Another example of this guy's lunacy here.
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26001 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  21:39:13   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The argument begins to fall apart (quickly) at the start of the third paragraph:
Would the seeing atheist explain that various scientists have made calculations and predictions to show that Neptune exists—as they did when Neptune was first discovered in 1846 by mathematical prediction rather than direct observation? The blind atheist would simply reply that this is an appeal to authority for which no direct empirical evidence exists.
At this, we can see that the author is using blindness as an analog for solipsism. The author fails to follow this train of logic to its terminal (haha!) conclusion: the "blind" atheist denying the existence of everything outside his own mind, flailing about (as the author does, sadly) with Occam's Very Dull Broadsword*.

Also, "empiricism," in the author's mind, consists of being able to have a direct sensory experience of some phenomenon (I can't help but be reminded of Hunter S. Thompson's remark about Nixon, "I won't believe he is really dead till I can gnaw on his skull with my very own teeth"). The author even says, in the comments, "Empirical evidence depends absolutely on the senses," which is the worst sort of ontology. The author should conclude that a strictly empirical scientist who suddenly has all of his sensory nerves severed would instantly say (to himself, obviously), "I can no longer detect the experimental apparatus I designed and built myself, therefore it no longer exists and my previous conclusions based upon that equipment must all be discarded." It's a ludicrous position, and the author clearly intended to build such a strawman.

---

* Occam's Razor is often misapplied, by skeptics and laypeople alike. Because a nearly infinite number of possible hypotheses can exist to explain some phenomenon, one uses the Razor to strip away the more-complex ones before testing begins. It's a tool for deciding where to look first, in the hopes that one's journey to a robust conclusion is as easy and short as possible. It is not a tool for choosing the more likely among equally supported hypotheses. And hacking and slashing away at unwanted hypotheses after testing has been done would be better described by the "Very Dull Broadsword" term I've coined above, with its implied butchery. Of course, with "God" as one of the hypotheses, one cannot employ the Razor simply because the God hypothesis leads to no testable predictions - so if you start down that path, you will go nowhere, forever, which is opposed to the intent of the Razor.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26001 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2008 :  22:12:05   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Alright, dammit, I left a comment.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26001 Posts

Posted - 12/29/2008 :  01:38:41   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
RD Miksa replied to me, so I had to answer.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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perrodetokio
Skeptic Friend

275 Posts

Posted - 12/29/2008 :  05:34:35   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send perrodetokio a Private Message  Reply with Quote
After reading all the comments and the blogger´s answers to them I realized there´s nothing this person won´t wave away. Waste of time if it wasn´t for the intelligent responses of people like yourselves.

Cheers!

"Yes I have a belief in a creator/God but do not know that he exists." Bill Scott

"They are still mosquitoes! They did not turn into whales or lizards or anything else. They are still mosquitoes!..." Bill Scott

"We should have millions of missing links or transition fossils showing a fish turning into a philosopher..." Bill Scott
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tomk80
SFN Regular

Netherlands
1278 Posts

Posted - 12/29/2008 :  06:54:31   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit tomk80's Homepage Send tomk80 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dave W.
* Occam's Razor is often misapplied, by skeptics and laypeople alike. Because a nearly infinite number of possible hypotheses can exist to explain some phenomenon, one uses the Razor to strip away the more-complex ones before testing begins. It's a tool for deciding where to look first, in the hopes that one's journey to a robust conclusion is as easy and short as possible. It is not a tool for choosing the more likely among equally supported hypotheses. And hacking and slashing away at unwanted hypotheses after testing has been done would be better described by the "Very Dull Broadsword" term I've coined above, with its implied butchery. Of course, with "God" as one of the hypotheses, one cannot employ the Razor simply because the God hypothesis leads to no testable predictions - so if you start down that path, you will go nowhere, forever, which is opposed to the intent of the Razor.

Off topic, but I don't think this is entirely correct and depends on the field of study. In cladistics for example, the search is for the most parsimonious form of a cladistic tree. However, to do so you calculate the likelyhoods of different trees and decide after this test which one is more parsimonious. So here Occam's Razor (ie, parsimony) is applied afterwards.

Basically, the principle is applied both before and after testing in such a way that simpler theories are only rejected if more complex theories do a better job in explaining the same phenomenon.

PS: Sye's disorder?

Tom

`Contrariwise,' continued Tweedledee, `if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic.'
-Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Caroll-
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26001 Posts

Posted - 12/29/2008 :  15:49:39   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by tomk80

Off topic, but I don't think this is entirely correct and depends on the field of study. In cladistics for example, the search is for the most parsimonious form of a cladistic tree. However, to do so you calculate the likelyhoods of different trees and decide after this test which one is more parsimonious. So here Occam's Razor (ie, parsimony) is applied afterwards.
I'm not sure I completely agree. I think in cladistics, parsimony is a major part of the testing itself. But Occam's Razor is applied beforehand, to say, "maybe body scarring isn't the best criteria on which to base a cladogram."
Basically, the principle is applied both before and after testing in such a way that simpler theories are only rejected if more complex theories do a better job in explaining the same phenomenon.
My point is that one goes looking for a more-complex theory only because the simpler theory fails to fully explain the phenomenon.
PS: Sye's disorder?
Look over here, at the comments from one "Sye TenB."

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 12/29/2008 :  19:41:34   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dave W.
Look over here, at the comments from one "Sye TenB."
Wow. That could be the most irritating man on the internet. I just skimmed through most of that thread, mostly by skipping to the instances when your name appeared. His entire shtick was getting someone else to admit they can't be certain of anything, and they using that as a tool against them by claiming that they could no longer challenge him. Because apparently he can be certain. Because god revealed himself to him. And he can be certain it was actually god because it was god, and therefore that justifies and validates his certainty.

Talk about a fucking brainwashed tool.


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
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the_ignored
SFN Addict

2557 Posts

Posted - 12/29/2008 :  20:12:19   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send the_ignored a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Philosopher Stephen Law has had several goes at ol' Sye. Just go to the labels on the left hand side of his blog and click on Sinnner's Ministries: Proof of the Existence of God.

A good one is here where Sye's "logic" is explicitly laid out and examined.

Hi Sye

You said:

Nope, that is not the argument. Again, it is like this:

1. God is the necessary precondition for logic (by the impossiblity of the contrary).
2. Logic exists
3. Therefore God exists.

All that anyone would have to do to refute me is to demonstrate how the universal, abstract, invariant laws of logic can exist without God. You folks are going on and on about the format, why not offer your refutation?






>From: enuffenuff@fastmail.fm
(excerpt follows):
> I'm looking to teach these two bastards a lesson they'll never forget.
> Personal visit by mates of mine. No violence, just a wee little chat.
>
> **** has also committed more crimes than you can count with his
> incitement of hatred against a religion. That law came in about 2007
> much to ****'s ignorance. That is fact and his writing will become well
> know as well as him becoming a publicly known icon of hatred.
>
> Good luck with that fuckwit. And Reynold, fucking run, and don't stop.
> Disappear would be best as it was you who dared to attack me on my
> illness knowing nothing of the cause. You disgust me and you are top of
> the list boy. Again, no violence. Just regular reminders of who's there
> and visits to see you are behaving. Nothing scary in reality. But I'd
> still disappear if I was you.

What brought that on? this. Original posting here.

Another example of this guy's lunacy here.
Edited by - the_ignored on 12/29/2008 20:17:29
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26001 Posts

Posted - 12/29/2008 :  20:49:36   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Sye never did present any argument or evidence supporting his precious little premise that the laws of logic are universal and invariant. And if you suggested otherwise, he would simply contradict a sentence of yours and then claim that because you said that the laws of logic aren't universal or invariant you should have no problem with violations of them, completely ignoring what logic is and what it's used for.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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