Recreating (and advancing) pk’s censored domains: Macroinformation.org &
Knatz.com / Teaching / Society / Social Epistemology / Cosmology … /
I love Richard Dawkins: memes, important idea: good general wise man: an Asimov, a Sagan; also a fool on too many occasions. Currently Dawkins is stirring the muck with generalizations about Muslims, Semites … what is and isn’t “religion.”
Yesterday I stuck in my News monthly:
Evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins is no stranger to controversy. For years, the famed atheist has regularly gone after the faithful, sometimes uttering offensive statements about their beliefs and practices. On Thursday, the activist and scientist took to Twitter, taking particular aim at the Muslim faith.
What Dawkins said may be fact, but facts can be misleading. Swallowed is the assumption, big as a black hole, that Nobel prize decisions are trustworthy. Some Amazon tribe makes a movie, it never wins an award in Bollywood: what does that say about the tribe’s movie? Nothing!
I love Dawkins, I love his memes, I love his partly digested Darwin, but he can be such an ass.
The error I want to highlight today is the trouble one finds trying to make too clear distinctions between race and religion. Hitler didn’t distinguish the Jews’ theology from the Jews themselves. Finally! One area where Hitler was actually right!
In Kansas, land and water may seem distinct. With one foot in the surf at Cony Island it’s not clear where you’re standing.
A Jew is anyone anyone else calls a Jew.
Profound. Ditto “n-.” Etc.
[Bowdlerizing K., 2016 08 02 To me a syncopated word is even more offensive than the straight vulgar term.]
Dawkins is absolutely right that Arabs did great science once upon a time. I presume he’s also right that Trinity College, Cambridge produced a lot of Nobel Prize winners. But notice the degree to which that’s like saying Most Roman Catholic popes have been Italian.
Does an Arab thinker have a fair chance with a committee in Stockholm? Have the gods of a tribe of headhunters on the Amazon received equal analysis as the stories in Luke by Christian priests?
“Scientists” idealize “science,” then deceive themselves that they have it.
pk says that what is or isn’t “Muslim” or “Arab” is little more clear than what was or wasn’t Jewish in 1930s Berlin. Dawkins further seems to believe that what’s “university,” what’s “science” is distinct. pk says they’re about as distinct as whether or not the magicians assistant is in the box as it’s sawed in half. Even if intelligence could be distinguished from stupidity, reliably, by social humans, truth from error, pk still doesn’t trust the committee. Darwin didn’t trust human intelligence, St. Paul didn’t trust human reason: neither do I.
Here’s a comparison: but take in a couple of observations first:
When the king dies the prince who wants to be king murders all his brothers. That’s what Alexander did when Philip died.
The ministers of one prince will run around burning all incriminating evidence about that prince.
Then someone writes a Bible saying the ministers all acted nobly, like the one prince.
Jesus said this and that. Presumably. A century after his death Christians were stabbing each other in the back, burning each other’s claims. The Christians called Gnostics by other burgeoning sects claimed this and that: including direct messages from God, guaranteed rituals to God … The followers of Paul’s emphasis on salvation only through faith buried the Gnostics. Forever? They still can’t establish a single fact.
Imagine for a moment that there is a God, one who’ll be a judging executive someday, one whose facts will actually be true! Now: how helpless will that God be in presenting which messages he actually issued, how, and through whom, and when?
What are the supporters of the Bible of lies going to do then?
Nothing. Rely on scientists, like Dawkins. And the lady in the magician’s box.
Where the candidates are dishonest, liars, cheaters, it doesn’t matter what any of their evidence hints.
My internet of 1970 opposed hindering, opposed authority, opposed coercion. The kleptocrats knocked Santa down, made sure freedom was ruled by Nazis.
A savable people would know it!
We don’t know it.
So what good is what we think we know?
Were there dry land we could put a foot on, we could start deceiving ourselves all over again.
Just reread Ender’s Game. God, I love how Ender carries a pupa queen of his defeated aliens around the universe, looking for a place to plant her.