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Bluff_King_Hal's Avatar Joined about 6 years ago
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Go to: Religious people do have a clearer moral code than secularists

Bluff_King_Hal's Avatar Jump to comment 12 by Bluff_King_Hal

Rifkind's video is just pure waffle.

As for his text - what philosophy degree did he take? One at a Catholic seminary?

The claim that only Booth's position makes sense is total bullshit, and he doesnt seem to have read TGD or anything by atheist philosophers who have written reams on a non-theistic basis to morality. Why cant atheists use the concepts of good and evil, and must restrict themselves to the watered-down ones Rifkind suggests? Total horseshit.

He also appears to conflate atheism with secularism. One might define a secularist as someone who thinks religious people sholdnt get lighter sentences than atheists, irrespective of whether they are an atheist themselves. If you do not object to Booth's favoritism, then you are not a secularist, period.

Rifkind reads and sounds like those guys who claim to be atheists who support "Intelligent Design". Closet theists almost certainly, and Rifkind sounds like a not very well hidden closet theocrat, not a secularist.

Fri, 05 Feb 2010 19:07:00 UTC | #438932

Go to: Religious people do have a clearer moral code than secularists

Bluff_King_Hal's Avatar Jump to comment 8 by Bluff_King_Hal

The fatuous miscomparisons regarding bears crapping etc are unworthy of comment, save to note the stupidity of the writer in thinking they are appropriate

"She's saying that, as a religious man, he should know better." Well that sounds if anything aggravating, rather than mitigating, to me - the man is not only a thug but a hypocrite as well. What Booth and her supporters obviously fail to grasp (particularly shocking in a judge) is that what matters is not what one *thinks* about a law but whether one complies with it. Leniency in sentencing should be determined by factors such as the severity of the offence, expressions of remorse, and evidence of intent to reform (such as attending anger managements courses). Even if one accepted that religious observence actually did make individuals more law-abiding in general (the reality being if anything the opposite) then since this man was *already* a Muslim at the time of the offence then this has been demonstrated to have been ineffective as acting as a source of restraint.

We see repeatedly how religion, rather than promoting law-abiding, actually works against it. The reason is that believer thinks that their religious laws trump that of mere mortal secular authorities, the latter only complied with is happening to coincide or at least not contradict their religious ones. Frequently religious believe motivates people to defy law, often violently, such as in the case of terrorism or attacks on abortion doctors, or discrimination against gay people.

It is true of course that an atheist may not uphold the law for reasons of their own, but since being an athest does not require signing up to any value system at all per se, then an atheist is actually person for whomn we have no a priori reason for thinking that they may have a strongly entrenched value system which they will follow even if defiance of the rule of law or community standards. As Dennett recentlty observed, crime when motivated by religious belief should actually be viewed more severely, not less. This crime was not religiously motivated (it may well have been Muslim on Muslim, going by the victim's name) but that still does not mean the perpetrator's religion should be mitigating. One wonders if Booth enquired after the victim's religion and previous character - would she perhaps not have thought that there should have been a more severe penalty for assaulting a both religious and *law-abiding* man - or just a law-abiding man, period!?

Fri, 05 Feb 2010 18:51:00 UTC | #438920

Go to: Subjection and Escape - Parts 2 and 3

Bluff_King_Hal's Avatar Jump to comment 36 by Bluff_King_Hal


Why does this sound so forked tongued? Pseudonymous, apparently created for this post. Says Lisa has "audacity" without apparent irony, yet puts "secret"in quotes as if the relationship were not secret, when it clearly was. Calls the Imam "so-called" as if he were not a real Imam, when he was. Names him, when Lisa herself chose not to - and requests she makes a news conference with him directly named. Uses Muslim reigious terminology which clearly, as she is now atheist, she will not appreciate. Reads more to me like someone trying to lure her into making public allegations that will allow her to be sued for libel (or evenw orse action taken against her) rather than someone who wishes to be supportive.


Fri, 05 Feb 2010 18:04:00 UTC | #438885

Go to: Subjection and Escape - Parts 2 and 3

Bluff_King_Hal's Avatar Jump to comment 27 by Bluff_King_Hal

Well done Lisa for your tremendous courage in your oppenness relating your awful experience. Apart form the horror of the experience itself, this is what stands out, in addition the kindness of RD to not merely reply but to send you copies of not only his own but other books to help you in your situation, belying the image of him some of his critics represent.

From your picture you appear to be a very attractive woman, and it is very sad that you should have had such low self-confidence in finding a partner and also should have wanted to coverup and hide yourself away so much. You are also clearly clearly highly intelligent and informed.

Recovery must be hard for you but you have made so much progress by being able to talk of your experiences. Such courage and insight you have gained will stand you well in future. My very best wishes. :)

Thu, 04 Feb 2010 19:39:00 UTC | #438559

Go to: NBGA support at and

Bluff_King_Hal's Avatar Jump to comment 2 by Bluff_King_Hal

I am in a similar predicament to Nails. Someone asks "What does it matter if a person gives aid with one hand with a Bible in the other?" With both hands free, you can give more aid?

Sun, 17 Jan 2010 22:01:00 UTC | #432378

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