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Baby Bear's lament: James Wood in the New Yorker

I must admit that I quite like the subtitle for this new anti-atheist lament in the New Yorker by James Wood: "A don defends the Supreme Being from the new atheists." I just picture a gigantic graying gentleman in academic robes, his sleeves flapping as he swats aside the helicopter gunships piloted by Dawkins and Dennett and Harris and Hitchens as they swoop in to take out a cowering, defenseless, and semi-transparent Bronze Age patriarch behind him. It's a peculiar arrogance of the true believers that at the same time they fervently follow this imaginary being that they claim is omnipotent and manifest in everything around us, they also flop into paroxysms of flustered, frantic defensive denial when some guy merely criticizes their holy hero. That's it; we say, "we don't believe in your deity, can you give us a reason we should?" and they immediately start blustering about how we should believe, and it's good for us, and all these other smart people believed, and atheists are unlettered nuisances who should quit annoying us with these questions. But they never, ever give us any evidence or any reason.

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Science journalism through the looking...

Chris Chambers and Petroc Sumner -... Comments

Science has an uneasy relationship with journalism, so what can be done by both sides to improve coverage

In defence of obscure words

Will Self - BBC News Magazine 100 Comments

We chase "fast culture" at our peril - unusual words and difficult art are good for us, says Will Self.

Your Brain on Fiction

Annie Murphy Paul - New York Times 26 Comments

New support for the value of fiction is arriving from an unexpected quarter: neuroscience.

The spectre of militant secularism

Nick Cohen - The Spectator 40 Comments

If you turn on the news tonight and hear of a bomber slaughtering civilians anywhere from Nigeria to the London Underground, I can reassure you of one point: the bombers will not be readers of Richard Dawkins.

A brutal price still paid for daring to...

Amol Rajan - The Independent 39 Comments

Their assault illustrates the extent to which defenders of religion still dominate our press, the brutal retaliation exacted on clever opponents of faith and the incorrigible stupidity of Sayeeda Warsi's claim about "militant secularism" last week.

The Sins of the Fathers [Also in Polish]

Richard Dawkins - 341 Comments

I can’t help wondering at the quality of journalism which sees a scoop in attacking a man for what his five-greats grandfather did.



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