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Comments by Macho Nachos

Go to: The battle of the butterflies and the ants

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 5 by Macho Nachos

Jeremy Thomas needs to watch what he says in press releases.

"There's a lot of theory on this but there are very few practical examples"

Oooh! *points* He admitted it! Evolution hasn't been proven!

But seriously, I am captivated by the world of insects, especially ants and their bevy of interactions with all kinds of other insects. It's rather amazing and I'm glad it's being studied more.

Sun, 06 Jan 2008 00:17:00 UTC | #102972

Go to: The evolution of creationism

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 9 by Macho Nachos

Under their theory, it's quite reasonable the Intelligent Designer could be the green men from Mars, or hyper-intelligent slugs from the Planet Zorg.

Don't be silly. There's no way hyperintelligent slugs or green men could account for the complexity and fine-tuning of life we could see today. That could only possible come about through the intervention of a G

Tue, 13 Nov 2007 15:53:00 UTC | #83899

Go to: Face to faith

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by Macho Nachos

"This wonder is different in quality from contemplative wonder, which does not undo but lets be. It involves a conception of science that extends knowledge but admits its limits. Some things are beyond its comprehension and remain intrinsically mysterious. Consciousness, morality and existence itself are obvious candidates - the things that the artistic, religious and moral imagination are so well equipped to ponder."

Sorry, but you don't just get to conceive science how you like it and make it so. You can look at science and think about its limits as much as you want, but you don't set those limits. It would seem 'contemplative wonder' is simply deliberate ignorance.

Is there any logical reason AT ALL that I should believe a 'religious imagination' (or a 'moral imagination', whatever that is) is well equipped to ponder 'mysterious' things? Are you trying to say that people who are not religious have no capacity to ponder conciousness, morality and existence? Rubbish!

He also needs a history lesson. Francis Bacon, the author of the scientific method. Huh? What scientific method? There isn't one, there are many and he didn't come up with all of them.

This whole article irritates me. Who actually thinks it's a good thing to think thunder is a sign of impending doom? If that's the best reason you can come up with for religion... well, you're on a level with most theologians.

Crap. Lame crap.

Sun, 28 Oct 2007 01:54:00 UTC | #79032

Go to: The Out Campaign

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 3 by Macho Nachos

ksskidude, good for you! While I'm not a big fan of the term 'bright', that's a really good letter, and writing it to your paper is a courageous move - just the ticket for the OUT campaign.

I'm off to fight the good fight against an IDer trying to preach at Australian universities tonight. I only hope I get the opportunity to make my voice heard, and hope that anyone in the audience who is wavering doesn't buy his tripe.

Mon, 30 Jul 2007 14:23:00 UTC | #56545

Go to: How could God allow 26 pilgrims to die in a crash?

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 2 by Macho Nachos

Delete the last 4 paragraphs, and you have a decent article.

He doesn't address the problems he poses at the start at all. He just says "well, we don't know, but being faithful is good enough for me".

Job strikes me as an idiot. Why would you follow a God who put you through all that horrible hardship just to test you, then when he reveals himself at the end, says "you wouldn't understand."? At that point I'd put my middle finger square in his metaphorical face and tell him to send me to Hell so I never have to deal with him again.

Wed, 25 Jul 2007 15:38:00 UTC | #55464

Go to: Face to faith

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 14 by Macho Nachos

Also on this comment: "There are good grounds for arguing, as Steve Bruce has done, that conservative religious groups are generally ineffectual in achieving their aims, whether through peaceful or violent means."

That's because they are generally unreasonable aims: I mean that literally. They are also often bigoted and defy both common sense and logic. It's just as well they don't get their way, because otherwise the whole world would be living under an oppressive theocracy. That may sound like hyperbole, but given the chance, what kind of highly conservative (read: fundamentalist) religious group WOULDN'T like to see everyone else follow their doctrine?

Also, just because they're ineffective in achieving their aims, it doesn't mean they don't make it a pain in the ass for reasonable people to debate, critique, legislate against, campaign, counter or (in violent cases) quell or clean up their efforts to bring the world in line with their fantasies and obsessions. You could say that totalitarian regimes are generally ineffective at taking over the world, but that doesn't mean they're not bad and cause trouble along the way.

Sat, 21 Jul 2007 00:09:00 UTC | #54594

Go to: Why I Believe Anti-Evangelism Is Wrong

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 2 by Macho Nachos

Oooh, this is going to get butchered.

My first thoughts, without much reasoned discussion:

1. Religions don't tend to live and let live. For example, on the Australian current affairs/debate show Insight, a religious person/people are always sitting near the front, butting in, talking over and imposing their religion's views in discourse over major issues such as stem cell research, abortion, gay rights and climate change. Religion imposes itself in the public sphere, which gives 'new atheists' the right to speak out against it.

2. If you don't broach the irrationality of faith and religion, then religious people aren't exposed to alternative, contradictory ideas to their faith and aren't forced to think about it and question it. Clearly if you're just flaming someone on the internet it won't have an effect, but I had a very large role when my cousin lost his religion through (sometimes heated) discussions over the course of several years. Surely, a person close to you earnestly posing questions about why you hold certain beliefs is a strong reason to trigger that all-important self-reflection and internal questioning that leads to loss of illogical faith.

3. Faith enjoys far too much unchallenged tiptoeing in the media and in general society. This is not fair, and is not a good state of affairs. As a scientist, this can have an indirect (or potentially direct) negative effect on the scientific establishment, method and my role in society.

4. Most atheists have lived and let live for a very, very long time. We are now in the 21st century, where scientific literacy is critical to the development of countries, let alone simple understanding of contentious issues. Sure, you can be a liberal religious type and be well informed in science; I'm not arguing that. However, kids brought up in a religious circle of influence (moderate or fundamentalist) aren't given the 'default alternative' - atheism - being religious is forced on them (the very thing that the author is railing against). Direct your rant against religious parents if you want an exercise in forcing beliefs onto others.

5. Atheism is not religion. Please wash your mouth out.

Wed, 18 Jul 2007 23:55:00 UTC | #54165

Go to: For Muslim Extremists, Religion Matters

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 20 by Macho Nachos

Well, black and white are only distinguishable because of God. You see, without light, there is no white, only black; you might say that, without God, white is black. Since God let there be light, God let there be the distinction, and if we recognise black and white as different, then we must accept God. Do you think black and white are different?

There, I'm sure that'd be able to convince a 5 year old kid.

Fri, 06 Jul 2007 21:35:00 UTC | #51294

Go to: In the name of the Father

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by Macho Nachos

"Most seriously of all, it hinders the alliance that should be forming between people of all shades of belief and unbelief in the basic struggle going on in every country for human rights, peace and economic justice against fanatics of all kinds."

Uhuh. And if the moderates don't realise that the fundies/fanatics are actually bad?

"Similarly, the philosophical arguments of Kant or Hume or Aquinas and the aesthetic judgments of Plato or Augustine can and ought to be considered in their own right, irrespective of the limitations of their scientific knowledge."

Haven't we heard this one before?

"The problem lies with us, especially when we are organised in groups with a dominant ideology, whether secular or religious."

YES! How can you write this and NOT realise that Hitchens is writing about the bad things done by people who follow organised group with a dominant religious ideology? It's a straw man to suggest that Hitchens thinks that without religion, there wouldn't be bad people, or that dogma would be a good thing. *sighs*

Sat, 23 Jun 2007 04:10:00 UTC | #48450

Go to: Why Do Some People Resist Science?

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 17 by Macho Nachos

Kaiserkiss: This may be horribly shallow, but I think a lot of people believe what Hawking says even though they don't understand it because he speaks in a robotic voice and doesn't really appear to be emotional or 'fallible'. So, they extrapolate that he's unlikely to be wrong about what he's saying.

Well, that's just a theory (like Evolution...)

On the topic of people being shallow, though, I think image and charisma are major factors. In a world where soundbites make up most of the coverage an average person gets on a given issue, the superficial impression we get of the source of information could easily play a major role in the credibility we assign to that position.

That is to say, people are more likely to believe Dawkins on evolution than a guy wearing a leather jacket, with a shaved head and tatts. Sure that's an extreme example, but there's a continuum there, and I'm confident it has an effect, even if not a concious one.

Wed, 30 May 2007 18:28:00 UTC | #43440

Go to: The God question

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by Macho Nachos

A good, solid review, in my opinion. He summarised important main points correctly, had some mild criticisms, but I feel he represented the book well.

Wed, 23 May 2007 02:21:00 UTC | #41098

Go to: Evolution Opponent Is in Line for Schools Post

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 17 by Macho Nachos

Poor little blighters, really copping a thrashing from that face cancer right now :(

Back OT, I really am sick of seeing people spout crap about evolution. There was an article in Newscientist last week about people subconciously acting contrarily to something they perceive as having the potential to impinge on their freedom. Well, it isn't subconcious with religion; it's plain to see they want to stop people from thinking outside their cramped little box!

Sun, 20 May 2007 14:53:00 UTC | #40405

Go to: Huge rally for Turkish secularism

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 7 by Macho Nachos

It's another word for religion.

Sun, 29 Apr 2007 14:38:00 UTC | #33409

Go to: Thanks for the Facts. Now Sell Them.

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 10 by Macho Nachos

In addition to some of the other criticisms posted above (and I haven't read PZ's reply yet), I thought there was a glaring problem.

How do you convey evolution in a dumbed-down way and still do it justice? Sure, the basic theory is simple, like the basic theory of global warming. That's easy enough to convey. It's also easy for naysayers to pick holes in and misrepresent, which is exactly what happens. It's easy to say we need to rethink our approach and get these concepts across, but if people aren't willing to ante some time and thought to the table, we aren't going to get through to them.

A majority of the population have no interest in learning the theory of evolution in its forms, applications and complexity. Hence, they don't understand just how powerful an explanatory tool it is.

High-quality documentaries are awe-inspiringly beautiful, informative and well made - the Planet Earth series, for example - and yet they don't rate as well as Big Brother. Lots of people don't want to think.

Telling people what to think about certain issues, like global warming, doesn't do science justice. What it may achieve is affirmative action from those people. The danger is that simply believing what an 'authority' tells you is completely against what science aims for, rational, skeptical, objective enquiry. Bah.

Sat, 14 Apr 2007 23:32:00 UTC | #29483

Go to: The God Delusion is one of the Ten Best Audiobooks

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by Macho Nachos

Not quite as moving as Horrid Henry's Underpants, but close.

Thu, 12 Apr 2007 01:16:00 UTC | #28888

Go to: Dawkins vs Haggard: the Python Edition

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 22 by Macho Nachos

Very cleverly cut together. Nice work to the person who made the clip, and thanks for the link :)

If only it wasn't such a ridiculous issue in the first place.

Thu, 05 Apr 2007 15:45:00 UTC | #27585

Go to: Lonely Atheists of the Global Village

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 13 by Macho Nachos

I read up to here:

"about the horrific brutalities committed in the name of "scientific atheism" during the 20th century;"

Please tell me about ONE horrific brutality that was commited IN THE NAME OF "scientific atheism". Has anyone ever killed someone "in the name of the absence of god" or "for the pursuit of rational, evidence based truth".

I wish people like this wouldn't waste oxygen breathing.

On a less negative note, what are the tags needed to quote a passage in these comments?

Sun, 18 Mar 2007 15:57:00 UTC | #24045

Go to: 160,000-year-old jawbone redefines origins of the species

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 3 by Macho Nachos

I expect they'd start by saying that scientists can't agree, and that we keep getting it wrong and chopping and changing our estimates, and that theirs is the only constant answer, and we should teach the controversy.

Of course, the point of finding out the truth is the willingness to revise estimates based on new evidence. Science: it works, bitches.

Tue, 13 Mar 2007 17:44:00 UTC | #23252

Go to: Darwin's God

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 10 by Macho Nachos

Yorker: That was an exceptional call to arms! As an Australian, there's a strange phenomenon that the less educated - the 'yobbos' - are the most vocal against the subversion of Australian culture. There's plenty of apologists writing in to the papers decrying intolerance and advocating multiculturalism, but they get shouted down by people who recognise the potential problem.

ScienceBreath: Nor do I. I also wouldn't hesitate to put my hand in a box.

Sun, 04 Mar 2007 15:21:00 UTC | #21859

Go to: Falwell says Christians shouldn't focus on global warming

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 41 by Macho Nachos

"Of course, there are many good things that he has to say. He does have a rather rough exterior, but having seen the balanced view of him (I go to LU), he's really not as terrible as the media makes him out to be. Yeah, sometimes I find myself cringing in convocation, but there are other times when he can be very inspirational."

OK, I've heard this kind of crap from religious people too many times. They defend lunatic statements of their leaders by claiming that some of their other opinions are more useful/good/valid.

@ the religious: If someone says something completely irresponsible, like Falwell has done here, don't continue to look up to them! Why take so much coal with the diamonds from a role model who is supposed to epitomise understanding and leadership on such issues? If a politician shared a majority of your view but vocally claimed that child molestation was something we should ignore, would you support them?


Fri, 02 Mar 2007 22:28:00 UTC | #21614

Go to: Faith

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 16 by Macho Nachos

"...detects parallels between dogmatic believers and dogmatic unbelievers such as Hitchens and Dawkins. "It is not just in the rigidity of their unbelief that atheists mimic dogmatic believers. It is in their fixation on belief itself.""

This isn't entirely inaccurate. However, 'militant' atheists like Dawkins are fixated on belief because they feel the rational, moral imperative to point out the problems with faith. An equivalent is like saying Martin Luther King was fixated on racism. Being fixated on people being rational, stopping indoctrination, and promoting logic and questioning is not a BAD thing, as this sentence implies.

I've never heard of a militant atheist killing or harming anyone in the name of Atheism.

Sun, 25 Feb 2007 23:51:00 UTC | #20854

Go to: In praise of Darwin this Sunday ... in hundreds of churches!

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 9 by Macho Nachos

Kimpatsu; not quite. It's more like 8 inches/20cm per minute, very roughly (assuming Everest is around 11km tall). Of course, that'd have to be uniformly covering the entire Earth at once. An umbrella would be less adequate than a submarine.

I was thinking this article was a joke. The line "As we posted this, over 10,200 clergy had signed this awful letter." doesn't seem... real. However, reading on, it was just sad. This person needs a straightjacket.

Mon, 12 Feb 2007 03:35:00 UTC | #19866

Go to: The questions science cannot answer

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 3 by Macho Nachos

"They know that they can't prove that God is there, any more than an atheist can prove that there is no God."

Well no, we can't disprove a negative, but you most certainly can prove a positive to a level which is beyond reasonable doubt.

What I'd like to know is why religious people are so obsessed with finding meaning. They begin with the assumption that there is a meaning to their life and deride science because it can't answer an abstract question.

Fri, 09 Feb 2007 22:19:00 UTC | #19439

Go to: Atheists in Jail

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by Macho Nachos

Yeah. At heart, I'm as intolerant as the most fundamentalist Christian, but I can't be bothered going to all the effort of prying into other people's lives, tormenting them, working my way into a position of influence to push my agenda, duping money from the gullible, and molesting small children.

Perhaps instead of Brights we should be called Lazys. Too lazy to believe in God, too lazy to try to control the world, too lazy to do all the horrible things our complete lack of morals allows us to do.

Mon, 29 Jan 2007 23:38:00 UTC | #17756

Go to: Deliver us from the god delusion that imperils our humanity

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by Macho Nachos

Ha! Collingwood supporters are bastards, the notion that they're better than Carlton supporters is simply ridiculous.

That said, it's good to see some atheist messages showing up in the Australian media. We're a pretty free-thinking and laid-back country, but there has been an increasing amount of religious crap in the media (the stem cell debate just reared its ugly head, fortunately, we won). Bravo, David.

Thu, 18 Jan 2007 14:32:00 UTC | #16150

Go to: 10 Questions for Heather Mac Donald

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by Macho Nachos

Interesting - I've never seen a piece by a non-religious conservative (well, openly, about some religious issues at least), and it's informed me about some of the view of yet another group out there.

It's strange, hearing the same arguments for atheism in such a different article - I found myself heartily agreeing in some areas, disagreeing in others, and completely ignorant of many of the personal references :p

Sat, 13 Jan 2007 21:16:00 UTC | #15486

Go to: For Human Eyes Only

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 13 by Macho Nachos

Cool! I enjoyed reading this article; it raises some interesting points. I think it's good to see some non-religious articles here; a breath of fresh air among the cloying stupidity often seen in the articles here!

WildCat raises an interesting point that it's possible that increased specificity of eye contact could in itself be a reproductive advantage. That wouldn't explain the initial development of an eye with whites, however.

Sat, 13 Jan 2007 16:59:00 UTC | #15470

Go to: Readers Write: Atheist Sam Harris on Torture and Faith

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 16 by Macho Nachos

I think the idea of torture is abhorrent. I agree with JohnC about the line in the sand.

If evaluated on a case-by-case basis on the need for torture, then in extreme scenarios, it can be seen as justified. However, the objectivity of the party doing the torturing is the problem. While you or I might perceive the prospect of a million people being killed as worth the sacrifice of one (or ten) people to torture, there are others who would consider much less, or very different, goals equally acceptable.

It's not something that should be in question. Deliberately inflicting severe pain on another human being is wrong. While in individual cases, people may take a step out of this boundary (in the same way a bystander might shoot someone on a killing spree), it should never be sanctioned.

Wed, 10 Jan 2007 23:23:00 UTC | #15157

Go to: Richard Dawkins' Report Card

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 8 by Macho Nachos

Ha. That was funnier than the report cards. Nice work, mummymonkey.

Wed, 10 Jan 2007 04:10:00 UTC | #15052

Go to: Richard Dawkins' Report Card

Macho Nachos's Avatar Jump to comment 6 by Macho Nachos

I never knew that teachers have ever, ever put "He must learn that ink is for writing, not washing" onto a child's report card.

I'm sure the parents would have been delighted to be informed of this instead of their child's academic progress.

I wonder if they've been able to get a hold of GWB's reports...

Wed, 10 Jan 2007 04:09:00 UTC | #15050