Fierce atheist chick

Wow, she’s kinda intimidating. Glad she’s on our side. ;D

Slate’s Ron Rosenbaum doesn’t understand atheism

Here’s the article she’s referring to:

An Agnostic Manifesto

Does this woman not breathe?!

Do I spot a hint of an Adam’s apple there? I am not sure which side she is on :D.

It’s a well-argued video piece, very much in line with my own reactions when I read Rosenbaum’s article. In several places, his ideas, rhetoric and phrasing struck me as the angry-while-doing-my-best-to-hide-it outpourings of someone harbouring an intense affection for the mystical who has been thwarted by the cudgels and stumbling blocks put in his way by reality, as embodied by atheism. In other words, he’s someone of sufficient intellectual rigour and integrity (sadly all too rare in itself) to acknowledge that the god-idea has more than enough serious problems to preclude it from being taken on faith (so to speak), but still he wishes it were true. Thus, his “agnosticism” isn’t a genuinely humble “I honestly do not know” admission. Instead, it’s a slightly forced concession that “I’ll profess not to know because propriety dictates that I must. Still, wouldn’t it be great if…”

Atheism, not agnosticism whether put-on or authentic, is the null hypothesis.* Therefore, atheism is perfectly in accord with the scientific method. It should be clear that by promoting the idea that science cannot now or ever resolve the god-question, Rosenbaum is plumping for Stephen Gould’s “separate magisteria” concept in the hope of preserving a romanticised version of eternal and insoluble mystery. At its worst, his rendering of agnosticism is little short of a tacit thumbs-up to both the virtues and the maintenance of blissful ignorance.


*The “null hypothesis” is the (default) position taken as evidently the true or correct one in respect of a specific question until such time as evidence comes to light that either renders it untenable or elevates a contending hypothesis to a more plausible status. The position, “There may or may not be a supernatural, omniscient,… (add requisite attributes) creator being we call ‘god’” can neither be strengthened nor weakened by any evidence whatsoever. In fact, it’s not a testable hypothesis at all, or even a useful one.

Beautiful response as always. Thanks Mefi! ;D

Thank you, Peter. Compliments are, of course, always welcome. And thank you also for starting this interesting thread. :-*


Phew… it is good that you finally realise that God is not some kind if scientific hypothesis or theory. We wouldn’t want God to be taught as an ongoing scientific hypothesis or theory in science classes just because certain idiots are under the impression that God is some kind of scientific hypothesis or theory. Good on ya matey ;).

You didn’t read what I wrote very attentively, did you now? Matey.


Aaw, just be glad that you finally realized God is not some scientific hypothesis or theory.

Your conclusions are as jumped-to as your comprehension abilities are grasshopperesque.


I am just glad you made it clear to everyone that God is not some scientific hypothesis or scientific theory. Whether they will acknowledge it is another thing.

Like prayer, saying it over and over and over won’t make it true. Oh wait…


Oh dear, don’t tell me you thought (or still think, oh the horror) that God is some kind of scientific hypothesis or scientific theory? Say it ain’t so :o, will you ever learn?

Oh dear, are you telling me you thought (or – oh what horror! – still think) that your trumped-up necessarily-existent-sophistry-and-obfuscation-wrapped-classical-theistic-supernatural-charade god who not only purportedly created all of physical reality, but also allegedly sustains it while, as rumour has it, whimsically meddling therein every so often, that this proposition is somehow exempt from scientific scrutiny!? Because science is simply too stupid to follow the synthetic nuances of theology which in any event require ongoing life support!? Say it’s not so! Will you ever learn that special pleading is evidence only of confabulation and intellectual fraud?


The only intellectual fraud would be to really really in your little heart believe God is a scientific theory. Luckily you have woken up… right? Right?

Nah, the intellectual fraud (and opportune fictionalising) begins with the oh-so-very-convenient notion that the existence of a “supernatural” entity that both constitutes and influences physical reality not only stands outside of the scientific ambit, but that it can be rationalised away with insubstantial semantic hocus-pocus cloaked in inundatingly verbose excusery that is meant to pass for Great Wisdom™. This particular line of intellectual fraud pretty much ends at the point where it is avowed that said conjured-up entity transcends physical reality and the scope of possible human experience, and yet there is no shortage of audacious penny-actors loudly trumpeting “profound” and “unassailable” “facts” about its nature and character. It’s jolly amusing, really, except that it isn’t generally recognised for the gormless joke that it is.

But I see you still don’t get the punchline.


Bah, not everyone has a humor based on straw men caricutures. To each his own I guess.

Yes, you of course know why I’m working with “straw men caricutures” [sic]. It’s because your god is way above human comprehension. I guess that means you’re not human, right?


Here have some, I see that hobby of yours is quite demanding.

See here, old chap.