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Comments by Kubrick

Go to: Against All Gods

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 4 by Kubrick

Grayling is quite right.

Richard, I seem to recall you claiming that, before Darwin, Intelligent Design was a defensible position. (I hope I'm not distorting your view here; I'm thinking of the passage in "The Blind Watchmaker" in which you suggest that Darwin made it possible to be "an intellectually fulfilled atheist.")

I'm sympathetic to this view--after all, Darwin did provide a breathtakingly parsimonious and empirically sound argument for natural selection as the the cause of the illusion of design. Still, I'm tempted to say that even before Darwin, there was a fatal flaw in ID arguments, precisely the one that Grayling foregrounds here. Saying "God did it" does not solve the problem--it merely replaces the original problem with a new (and more insoluble) one. Perhaps this means that we should be careful not to overstate the link between Darwinism and atheism. In other words, even if there weren't a shred of evidence for Darwinian evolution, wouldn't ID remain an illogical and unsatisfying position?

Thu, 26 Jul 2012 17:15:36 UTC | #950114

Go to: “It’s Part of their Culture” - Reading Nick Cohen in the light of the Jaipur affair [Also in Polish]

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 16 by Kubrick

I've always liked philosopher Slavoj Zizek's formulation on cultural relativism: "Today's tolerant liberal multiculturalism wishes to experience the Other deprived of its Otherness (the idealized Other who dances fascinating dances and has an ecologically holistic approach to reality, while features like wife beating remain out of sight)."

Thu, 02 Feb 2012 03:50:54 UTC | #913684

Go to: The Unbelievers

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 4 by Kubrick

A good article. It would have been nice to see a quick reference to rapper Greydon Square, though, who is one of the most vocal black atheists out there.

Sun, 27 Nov 2011 16:34:23 UTC | #893616

Go to: Magicians say their craft makes them see faith as just hocus-pocus

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 4 by Kubrick

A shame that there was no mention of Derren Brown here.

Mon, 31 Oct 2011 17:59:52 UTC | #885777

Go to: Atheist Richard Dawkins snubbed by Detroit area country club

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by Kubrick

It really is remarkable how all of Dawkins' credentials (evolutionary biologist, former professor at Oxford University, best-selling author, etc.) get overshadowed by the term "atheist." (Granted, he is briefly called a "scientist from England" as well, although this is a bit like calling Bill Gates "an American businessman.") Can anyone imagine a newspaper article calling Francis Collins "a noted Christian" while ignoring his contribution to the Human Genome Project and his role as director of the NIH?

Wed, 12 Oct 2011 18:42:17 UTC | #880238

Go to: Twilight of Violence

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 3 by Kubrick

This is an outstanding interview, and Pinker's comments on supposedly "atheistic" societies are quite cogent. This argument is also a welcome counterweight to the significant number of Americans who believe that modern violence is unprecedented, and thus a clear indicator that we are living in "the last days."

Tue, 04 Oct 2011 15:33:48 UTC | #877808

Go to: Jon Stewart Announces DC 'Rally to Restore Sanity'

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 13 by Kubrick

This put me in such a good mood. I was starting to become very depressed with the insistent blather about America devolving into a godless, socialist, Kenyan, Muslim dictatorship (or something like that). Stewart and Colbert are some of the greatest comic voices ever...right up there with Swift, Voltaire, Twain, Bruce, Pryor, and Carlin.

Sun, 19 Sep 2010 01:28:17 UTC | #520979

Go to: Why Belief in God Is/Is Not Innate

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 4 by Kubrick

Perhaps, as Shermer suggests, "the gods will always be with us," but this conclusion does not seem to follow from his argument. Even if a belief in the supernatural is to some extent "hard-wired" into our brains, this does not make it inescapable. Genetics is not destiny. After all, there was likely a genetic component in the once-common belief in the importance of human sacrifice, but that practice has by and large become extinct.

Sat, 10 Apr 2010 12:40:00 UTC | #457757

Go to: Meet the Flintstones

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 6 by Kubrick

Here's the full Lewis Black quotation on young-earth creationists: "They are crazy. They are stone-cold-fuck-nuts! I can't be kind about this. Because these people are watching The Flintstones as if it were a documentary."

Here's a link to the routine:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w0gAcbAGPH4

Classic comedy!

Sun, 21 Feb 2010 17:06:00 UTC | #442777

Go to: The Great Tim Tebow Fallacy

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 12 by Kubrick

Re: Free speech,

It is worth noting that the Super Bowl rejected a different advertisement, one for a gay dating service.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/28/mancrunch-superbowl-ad-ga_n_440773.html

Wed, 03 Feb 2010 20:45:00 UTC | #438222

Go to: 'Teach the Controversy'

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 4 by Kubrick

I'm not so sure that banishing creationism from the classroom is the answer. Why can't creationism be introduced to contrast it with genuine science? For that matter, I would like my child to be taught why astrology, demon-possession, etc. are pseudoscientific.

None of these should be taught as "alternative theories," of course. But introducing such topics might help students better understand what science is (and what it isn't).

Fri, 08 Jan 2010 02:00:00 UTC | #429873

Go to: New Agers and Creationists should not be President

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 5 by Kubrick

Well said, Ebert. In America, the political right is sometimes unfairly stereotyped as "anti-science." While that label broadly applies when it comes to their opposition to evolution and global warming, many forget that the new age/psychic/anti-vaccine/alternative medicine/"natural is better" nonsense often comes from the left.

Sat, 19 Dec 2009 19:24:00 UTC | #424633

Go to: Three Eminent Biologists And 'Growing Pains' Kirk Cameron Weigh In On Evolution

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 22 by Kubrick

Simply brilliant! The Onion is the best satire out there right now (w/ respectful nods to The Daily Show and The Colbert Report).

Fri, 04 Dec 2009 23:24:00 UTC | #420348

Go to: Children who front Richard Dawkins' atheist ads are evangelicals

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 20 by Kubrick

Painful. Just painful. How is it that the author of this article keeps referring to the children at Christians? Did she not bother to read the goddamn ad?

Sat, 21 Nov 2009 14:18:00 UTC | #415301

Go to: Creationism, Minus a Young Earth, Emerges in the Islamic World

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by Kubrick

Well, at least most of them are the more...sophisticated creationists. No, that doesn't sound right to me, either.

Tue, 03 Nov 2009 02:03:00 UTC | #410837

Go to: Mr. Deity and the Identity Crisis

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 28 by Kubrick

Thanks for the Joyce reference, Shuggy. All nonbelievers should read "Ulysses"--it's filled with delightful blasphemies.

Sun, 01 Nov 2009 16:53:00 UTC | #410424

Go to: 77 Favourite Atheist Books

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 48 by Kubrick

Happy to see Beckett's "Waiting for Godot" on the list. It's the greatest play of the 20th century and a powerful commentary on the emotions that engender religion--fear, vulnerability, a desire for certainty, and so on:

"Yes, in this immense confusion one thing alone is clear. We are waiting for Godot to come."

Sat, 18 Jul 2009 16:38:00 UTC | #380471

Go to: God Talk

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 24 by Kubrick

"But Christianity was never meant to be an explanation of anything in the first place."

I beg to differ. It was meant to answer Joseph's furious question: "How the hell can you be pregnant when we haven't had sex yet?"

In all seriousness, though, Fish and Eagleton are probably thinking of more sophisticated forms of religion that involve talk of radical alterity, the power of myths, transcendence, and so on. The problem is that outside of academia, very few people are religious in this sense. They really believe the Bible is a literal explanation of how we got here, why we suffer, and why rainbows exist.

Mon, 04 May 2009 14:23:00 UTC | #356173

Go to: Scientific illiteracy all the rage among the glitterati

Kubrick's Avatar Jump to comment 37 by Kubrick

I would recommend that everyone go http://change.gov/openforquestions, log in, and do a search for "vaccines." One of the questions asks Obama to disavow his suspicion of the MMR-autism link, and if enough people vote for it (by clicking on the check mark), we might be able to push this important issue to the forefront.

Mon, 29 Dec 2008 11:09:00 UTC | #293356