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Atheism is a Mental Illness, Says Creationist

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 17:57 by John Sinteur in category: Pastafarian News

[Quote:]

Bwinwright then claims to know the key to winning any argument with any atheist. In fact, he thinks it “pisses them off because they simply can’t figure out how to overcome it.” What is this amazing arguing tool? Will it piss me off?

I ask them to give me a single example of anything, outside of what they call nature, that came into being without intelligent direction. Of course, they can not. Everything manufactured by man required intelligent direction, right? Of course.

Let’s try to answer this question. So anything outside of “nature” that came into being without intelligent direction. Okay. What’s outside of nature?

Er, nothing.

Or perhaps he means “natural” — that is, what is made without intelligent intervention. If so, then of course it’s not possible to answer, because it would be counter to the definition.

So we can’t answer his tricky question! Therefore, bwinwright wins the argument! Genius!

Are you pissed off yet? Yeah, me neither — but we’re mentally ill, so maybe we’re just slow to anger.


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Comments:

  1. A good counter example to their question would be a reeses peanut butter cup. Clearly not natural and accidentally created…at least according to their commercials.

  2. Traffic jams?

  3. First thing that comes to mind? There’s a satellite antenna that NASA is using. ( http://ti.arc.nasa.gov/projects/esg/research/antenna.htm ) It is a massive improvement on any other antenna out there in terms of cost, performance, size, and development time. The tool they used for its “design” is a Genetic Algorithm (GA) – which essentially is trial and error, patterned after Evolution theory, but sped up with the aid of computers.

    The way that a GA works is, pick a number of random designs, e.g. 100, then test the fitness of each one to the final goal. Take the top 10, and use them to create the next batch of 100 through cross-breeding and random mutation. Repeat as long as you want, or until you get something good enough.

    Note that at no point in this simulation is there an analysis or “intelligent decision” about any of the designs. There is simply a test of how well the design works to meet the final goal, and the fittest designs survive and propagate.

    In short, Evolution soundly beat out Intelligent Design for this antenna.

    Now, a counter-argument to this example is to say that someone designed the computer. While that may be true, it does not actually address the method, i.e. it was was a conscious choice on the part of the NASA scientists to use Evolution, rather than to tinker with it directly. Therefore, the conclusion is that, sure, there may be an Intelligent Designer, but that intelligent designer chose to use Evolution.

    Another counter-argument is that the resulting design is so complex that it requires a computer to build it, so “clearly” there’s intelligence required there. However, the original thought experiment was to show something artificial that had not been designed – and the antenna was clearly not “designed” by anything other than trial and error and survival of the fittest – which is to say, Evolution.

    I think the better way to look at the ID vs Evolution argument is to turn it around – if we, and everything around us, are the product of an external designer, then why are we broken? There’s of course the fragility of the human body, e.g. disease, death, the fact that the majority of the Earth’s surface is fatal to us, etc. The larger question in my mind is, if it is important to the designer that the creation recognize the designer, why didn’t the creator hard-wire that in? The result of free will is enlightened discussion and scientific advances that give us the potential to improve the living experience of everyone on the planet – although not enough of us have yet chosen to make that happen. The result of The Church has, on average, been to squelch individual thought, and to reduce the possibility of each individual to achieve his/her maximum potential.

    In short, if we are designed, we are designed in such a way that the average individual who claims there is a designer has a higher probability of increasing the global average level of pain and misery. I cannot think of an answer that does not boil down to “God demands faith despite hardship” – which correlates to making other people miserable in the name of improving their lives – or “God’s ways cannot be known to us” – in which case, there is by definition nothing that can be learned by studying the creator. The parameters of our design either mean that we are meant to be miserable or to evolve freely.

  4. I can give you a great example of something that came into being without intelligent direction: Bwinwright’s question / argument…

  5. The dutch philosopher Spinoza coined the phrase “Deus sive Natura” which means “God or nature”. He describes everything as being part of God. But because he also needed to differ between that which has it’s own cause, and that which is caused by something else, he introduced the difference between “natura naturans” and “natura naturata”.

    When someone asks about something outside of nature, they talk about this first term, natura naturans. It is that, which is it’s own cause, that raises a lot of debates.

    For Spinoza the issue is simple: there is no difference between the two, as they both obey the same endless natural laws and are made of the same substance.

    So the question for something “outside of nature” is limited to your definition of nature. A spinozist can simply point to the difference spelled out by Spinoza, and be done with it.

    If all creationist would be as stupid as Bwinwright, the debate would be long over.

  6. Economics, dude! The whole idea of free-market theory is that a lot of intelligences work in a massive way to do things that no one mind could have figured out. Not to say i’m a free-marketeer, but most creationists are…so…hypocrisy! or something

  7. Unless evolution can be proven on a molecular level, it is pointless to discuss any organism of a higher order. The theory of evolution thus still has a looong way to go, since it can’t. So how about fixing your own problem first, eh?

  8. Unless evolution can be proven on a molecular level

    What the fuck does that even mean? Is it something like “unless nuclear fusion can be proven on an atomic level, it’s useless to discuss what’s happening in the sun?”

  9. No. It has NOT been proved even to work on a molecular level. It still remains a shoddy theory, at best. Every few years it’s back to the drawing room for another fancy theory in the frankly very humorous evolution saga. You should read up on it, it’ really very funny. The first ‘lizards’ learned to fly by catching insect? Really, that was seriously suggested not too many years ago.

  10. You still haven’t explained what the fuck you mean by “work on a molecular level”.

  11. there’s nothing that anyone can say that’s inside nature that came into being with intelligent design

    pointless question that just demonstrated the person asking it has no clue or logic capacity

  12. I usually just lurk here occasionally, but thought I’d suggest you read Behe’s ‘Darwin’s black box’.

  13. I have to think that if the Universe was truly the product of Intelligent Design, then most of these boneheads would never have been conceived or born!

  14. Behe? That same Behe and the same book that is the source of this whole “Irreducibly Complex” idea? Do you really think I’m not aware of it? The book is utter crap. May I offer you this link in return?

  15. I actually own and have read Darwin’s Black Box. It completely ignores evidence and makes unfalsifiable claims. This does not make it accurate, Dinah.

  16. Alright, so you say evolution can’t be proven on a molecular level, and every so often they go back to the drawing board. But what about divine creation? It can’t be proven on a molecular level either!

    What’s more, the creationists also go back to the drawing board every so often, i.e., Zeus, Odin, Horus, Jesus, Allah, Mohammad, Krishna, etc. How funny do you find that? (Don’t answer, it was a rhetorical question)

    Now, lets go one step further. Nature does not have a presence that allows it to communicate with humans in any kind of language format we understand; however, we have been led to believe that all of the gods have the ability to speak to us. Yet, there is no historical document that can prove there is a god or that he/she/it ever spoke to any man. Why wouldn’t a god communicate with their creations? Furthermore, if God is an almighty, all-knowing, omnipotent being, how is it that he created such an imperfect creature as man? That in itself disproves “His” omnipotence, and raises the question of his very existence. So, why has your God not revealed himself to humanity?

  17. IF some folks believe earthly life is way too complex to have arrived without the guidance of an Omnipotent Intelligent Creator, how do they explain the existence of said Creator?

    (Where’d SHE come from? ;)

  18. Wait, back me up a little. How does artificial equate to morally superior to natural? How does the perfection of nature argue in FAVOR of intelligent design? Intelligently designed stuff falls apart, poisons your body, rots your brain, cuts your finger. How is it advantageous, or even prestigious, to be an artifact and not a natural phenomenon? Lets clear this up before we invoke spooks in the sky, huh?

  19. Bwinwright needs a more sophisticated argument so that I can understand what the hell he’s trying to say.

  20. “Every few years it’s back to the drawing room for another fancy theory in the frankly very humorous evolution saga. You should read up on it, it’ really very funny. The first ‘lizards’ learned to fly by catching insect? Really, that was seriously suggested not too many years ago.”

    This is how science WORKS. Our understanding of things is constantly revised and refined (that’s “back to the drawing board,” as you put it). The scientific process starts with a proposition (even a stupid one) and the proposition can be falsified (that is, demonstrated to be not true) or evidence in its favor can accumulate.

    Contrast this with religious dogma, which – as far as I can tell – can’t even manage to be internally consistent within a given belief system.

    You should read up on it, it’s enlightening!

  21. It’s arguments like Bwinwright’s that convinced me that raising my kids with religion was tantamount to raising them not to think correctly. Belief in the supernatural leads to illogical thinking, not just in relation to religion, but it also spills over to everything else. I don’t think you can just partition your mind with this stuff. In the end religion is dangerous to the thinking of all people.

  22. Which does nothing, of course, to prove the existence of his Jesus Clause.

    Adults that believe in fairy tales should be banished.

  23. I was told when reading the bible to keep it simple and what you don’t understand take your time and in time it will be revealed to you. The Bible is like a living organism, it breaths life. Jesus spoke in parable to confuse the wise and make it plain to the simple.

    That why King Solomon said: Only a fool says in his heart there is no God (Creator). So if i’m to believe the entire bible as I do then there is no such person called an Atheist.

    According to Jehovah God and King Solomon an atheist is only a fool who refuses to accept the TRUTH about a Creator. Rebellion. I know who’s behind that thought.

    The Bible also says Jehovah God our Father does not lie and can’t lie. His thoughts are not are thoughts and are thoughts are not his thoughts.

  24. The Bible also says Jehovah God our Father does not lie and can’t lie

    Pity then about Numbers 14:30, where god admits he lied.

  25. According to Jehovah God and King Solomon an atheist is only a fool who refuses to accept the TRUTH about a Creator. Rebellion. I know who’s behind that thought

    So both Jehovah God and King Solomon are going to hell: Matthew 5:22, “but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire”

  26. Evolution has been proven on a molecular level. Dna & rna are molocules, dumbass!

  27. I think people have basically been brainwashed by evolution. It’s all they hear at school, on the mass media, museums, National Parks etc. and it’s all supposed to be “scientific”

    Its so sad that students never get to hear the Creation Science side of the story. Instead they are forced to accept a pedantic, one sided theory invented by Darwin in the 1840’s. Even Darwin questioned the concept of how an “eye” could evolve? An eye is totally useless without all of its parts working, that’s what irreducible complexity is all about.

    Of course creationists can accept the microevolutionary processes that Darwin observed on the Galapagos Islands. The different finches observed on different islands were due to mutations and we have absolutely no problem with this.

    Macroevolution however is a different story. The idea that birds evolved from reptiles seems such a preposterous idea. Reptiles have a totally different respiratory system to birds. With birds airflow in one direction is maintained in both inhalation and exhalation. With reptiles airflow is two directional, just like us.

    And of course there are so many examples of intelligent design in nature you’d have to be blind not to notice them. Scientists always gone to nature to find out all there smart ideas. For example the bats gave them their sonar technology. They’ve only just figured out how to make robots that replicate bird’s flight and they’re still trying to figure out how Polar Bears hibernate. So someone or something up there is one up on the scientists.

  28. Jefferson, the amazement you appear to feel about people who think evolution is correct is the same feeling we have when people tell us they believe in intelligent design. Welcome to the club.

    Well, except that evolution follows the scientific method and intelligent design uses the “because we say so” method. The difference matters quite a bit.

  29. You may also want to view this.

  30. Jefferson: “one sided theory invented by Darwin in the 1840’s”

    Darwin has been working on a hypothesis, which was already known in scientific circles, and found a better answer to the questions that surrounded that hypothesis. Later that hypothesis became a theory because it has been supported by a lot of facts.

    The fact that Darwin did not invent the “theory of evolution” is supported by the existence of Natural Theology, a book written by William Palley, first published in 1802 – and it’s one of the first Intelligent Design theory books. Incidentally, he was the first person – as far as I know – who brought up the example of the eye, likening it to the telescope. And he was the good reverend who introduced the Watchmaker as a concept.
    Also, you may be surprised that the “theory invented” by Charles Darwin was something that Erasmus Darwin, the grandfather of Charles Darwin, wrote a book upon – Zoonomia – in which he was speculating about spontaneous changes in organisms.
    That’s about shows how much it was evolution was “invented” by Charles Darwin.

    The eye: You say the eye is useless without all it’s parts. That’s true. There never was “half an eye”. There was and are however eyes which are half as efficient as the human eye. Or even worse than half as effective. Even some bacteria have light sensitive enzime systems.

  31. Some corrections and additions: “how much it was evolution was” correction “how much evolution was”.

    Also, Darwin did not question the evolution of the eye. He went out to answer the question posed by William Paley, and found that there is indeed a lot of different eyes, light sensing organs of different levels of effectiveness, from simple light/dark sensing ones to the human eye.

    So no, he did not question it. Someone half a century before the publication of Origin of Species questioned it.

John Dvorak’s Second Opinion: Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 17:03 by John Sinteur in category: Apple, Funny!

[Mar 28, 2007:]

As for advertising and expensive marketing this is nothing like Apple has ever stepped into. It’s a buzz saw waiting to chop up newbies

The problem here is that while Apple can play the fashion game as well as any company, there is no evidence that it can play it fast enough. These phones go in and out of style so fast that unless Apple has half a dozen variants in the pipeline, its phone, even if immediately successful, will be passé within 3 months.

There is no likelihood that Apple can be successful in a business this competitive. Even in the business where it is a clear pioneer, the personal computer, it had to compete with Microsoft and can only sustain a 5% market share.

[..]

What Apple risks here is its reputation as a hot company that can do no wrong. If it’s smart it will call the iPhone a “reference design” and pass it to some suckers to build with someone else’s marketing budget. Then it can wash its hands of any marketplace failures.

It should do that immediately before it’s too late. Samsung Electronics Ltd. might be a candidate. Otherwise I’d advise you to cover your eyes. You’re not going to like what you’ll see.

Gee, I wonder how that worked out for Apple.


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Homezone Advantage

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 14:44 by John Sinteur in category: If you're in marketing, kill yourself

[Quote:]

billboardm


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Demolished! 11 Beautiful Train Stations That Fell To The Wrecking Ball

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 14:32 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

In 1963, America learned a painful lesson when Pennsylvania Station, an architectural treasure that Senator Daniel Moynihan described as “the best thing in our city,” was torn down and replaced with a dreary complex that includes an office building and Madison Square Garden. The rail station, to this day the nation’s busiest, was moved underground into a claustrophobic warren of artificially lit passageways and bleak waiting rooms. While there has been an active campaign since the 1990’s to rectify the mistake by creating a new and worthy station a block away, the $1 billion-plus project remains tied up in political gridlock.

But the sad saga of Penn was by no means an isolated incident. Almost like a rite of passage, cities across the country embraced the era of Interstates, Big Macs, and suburban sprawl by tearing down their train depots. (Frequently, they just did the Joni Mitchell thing and put up a parking lot.) But time and experience are showing that train stations are vital organs in a healthy city, and removing them deadens the entire organism.

THEN: A grand Beaux Arts depot for a thriving city

mephis-union-station1

WHAT’S THERE NOW: A windowless postal facility surrounded by barbed wire stands on site of the old station.

usps-bldg1


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Girl Scout Cookies

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 13:57 by John Sinteur in category: Funny!

political-pictures-girl-scouts


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Special Interest Money Means Longer Odds for Public Option

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 13:56 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

I decided to build a model to explain and predict whether a particular senator supports the public option. The variables in the model are as follows:

— The senator’s ideology, as measured by his DW-NOMINATE score;
— Per capita health care spending in the senator’s home state;
— Lobbying contributions received by the senator from health insurance PACs since 2004.

publogit2


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Under Misspelled Banner, Buchanan And White Nationalist Brimelow Argue For English-Only Initiatives

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 13:15 by John Sinteur in category: Foyer of Ennui (just short of the Hall of Shame), Funny!

[Quote:]

On Saturday, Pat Buchanan hosted a conference to discuss how Republicans can regain a majority in America. During one discussion, panelists suggested supporting English-only initiatives as a prime way of attracting “working class white Democrats.” The discussion ridiculed Judge Sotomayor for the fact that she studied children’s classics to improve her grammar while attending college. The panelists also suggested that, without English as the official language, President Obama would force Americans to speak Spanish.

One salient feature of the event was the banner hanging over the English-only advocates. The word conference was spelled “Conferenece.”

buchanan


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Comments:

  1. This would be laughable if it wasn’t so tragic.

  2. or so frightening

3 dogs added to TSA staff

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 12:39 by John Sinteur in category: Security

[Quote:]

As early as August, the federal Transportation Security Administration will introduce three canines to its local staff, marking the first time in airport history that law enforcement dogs take on a full-time role there. Their mission: sniffing out explosives.

That should increase the average IQ a few points..

Charleston County Aviation Authority airports director Sue Stevens briefed the agency’s board members Thursday on the three canines coming to town. Although she did not yet know the specific breeds, she said, “A lot of them speak Dutch, because they’re trained in Holland.”

“Baas, die vent heeft een bom!”


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56.4 percent of New York City HS kids graduate in 4 years

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 12:27 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

New York City’s four-year high school graduation rate has risen to 56.4 percent.

Holy crap that’s low….


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Comments:

  1. If it’s risen, does anyone know what it was before?

    Of course, here’s the fallacy of statistics. Let’s assume that it was at an even 50%. Therefore, the increase of this magnitude would correspond to a 12.8% improvement in the graduation rate, and it would therefore look really good on paper to the bureaucrats and administrators who measure these things…..

Son’s Death Has Iranian Family Asking Why

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 10:45 by John Sinteur in category: ¿ʞɔnɟ ǝɥʇ ʇɐɥʍ

[Quote:]

On Saturday, amid the most violent clashes between security forces and protesters, Mr. Alipour was shot in the head as he stood at an intersection in downtown Tehran. He was returning from acting class and a week shy of becoming a groom, his family said.

The details of his death remain unclear. He had been alone. Neighbors and relatives think that he got trapped in the crossfire. He wasn’t politically active and hadn’t taken part in the turmoil that has rocked Iran for over a week, they said.

[..]

Upon learning of his son’s death, the elder Mr. Alipour was told the family had to pay an equivalent of $3,000 as a “bullet fee”—a fee for the bullet used by security forces—before taking the body back, relatives said.

Mr. Alipour told officials that his entire possessions wouldn’t amount to $3,000, arguing they should waive the fee because he is a veteran of the Iran-Iraq war. According to relatives, morgue officials finally agreed, but demanded that the family do no funeral or burial in Tehran. Kaveh Alipour’s body was quietly transported to the city of Rasht, where there is family.


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Ensign back in D.C.

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 10:43 by John Sinteur in category: News

[Quote:]

Republican Sen. John Ensign returned to the capital today to handshakes from colleagues.

It was the first public appearance for the senator who admitted last week to having conducted an eight-month affair with a former campaign staffer who is married to one of his former top aides.

This is the same guy that called for Bill Clinton and Larry Craig to resign. Nice to see him upholding the usual standards by ignoring all that when he himself is the target.


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Comments:

  1. Don’t tell me you would’ve expected anything else…

  2. From a job application form for prospective politicians:

    Are you or have you ever been a Hypocrite? Yes [ ] No [ ] Don’t Care [ ]
    Have you ever taken a bribe? Yes [ ] No [ ] How Much? $________
    If offered a bribe in your official capacity, would you accept it? Yes [ ] No [ ] How Much? $_______
    Have you answered untruthfully anywhere on this form? Yes [ ] No [ ] Not Sure [ ]

ASCAP Wants To Be Paid When Your Phone Rings

Posted on June 23rd, 2009 at 9:33 by John Sinteur in category: ¿ʞɔnɟ ǝɥʇ ʇɐɥʍ, Intellectual Property

[Quote:]

ASCAP (the same folks who went after Girl Scouts for singing around a campfire) appears to believe that every time your musical ringtone rings in public, you’re violating copyright law by “publicly performing” it without a license. At least that’s the import of a brief [2.5mb PDF] it filed in ASCAP’s court battle with mobile phone giant AT&T.

This will doubtless come as a shock to the millions of Americans who have legitimately purchased musical ringtones, contributing millions to the music industry’s bottom line. Are we each liable for statutory damages (say, $80,000) if we forget to silence our phones in a restaurant?

ASCAP’s outlandish claim is part of its battle with major mobile carriers (including Verizon and AT&T) over whether ASCAP is owed any money for “public performances” of the musical ringtones sold by the carriers. The carriers point out that the owners of the musical compositions (i.e., songwriters and music publishers) are already paid for each ringtone download, but ASCAP claims that it’s owed another royalty for the “public performances” (i.e., ringing in a restaurant) of those same ringtones.


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Comments:

  1. Is ASCAP *trying* to lose money? If they pursue this they won’t make any royalties at all. I can’t see how this will help them.