Here is a tweet from the folks at “Atheist Republic”. Call it a meme if you want. (Might as well since the word “meme” seems to apply to most anything that gets retweeted.) So here’s the meme: pic.twitter.com/AduwjnloUq — Atheist Republic (@AtheistRepublic) August 16, 2017 I’m not sure what definition of “bullshit” the folks at […]
False Witness, Lies, Delusions, and Bullshit … and Why the Difference Matters
A couple days ago the New York Times published an opinion piece grandly titled “Trump’s Lies.” The article purports to chronicle “nearly every outright lie he has told publicly since taking the oath of office.” The reader is then treated to a chronicle of dizzying length and breadth chronicling all the public instances where the POTUS […]
Politicians, fascists, and used car salesmen
In the last two days Donald Trump has “crossed a new line” by endorsing the suggestion of a reporter that the government should begin to compile lists of Muslims living in the United States. Here is a transcript of one of the relevant exchanges courtesy of MSNBC: NBC: Should there be a database system that […]
Has Boghossian’s bulldog been neutered?
I have noted in the past that John Loftus has come out as a vocal defender of Peter Boghossian. So it was with great interest that I read Loftus’ comments on the McGrew/Boghossian debate. In his response, Loftus keeps up his bravado, even throwing in the proverbial chest-thump as he dubs himself “Boghossian’s bulldog”. In my response, “Boghossian’s […]
Loftus admits Boghossian doesn’t care about truth. I call that bogusian!
In the discussion thread to “John W. Loftus defends Peter Boghossian” Mr. Loftus provided yet another “defense” of A Manual for Creating Atheists. He writes: “Boghossian does indeed use rhetoric to his advantage. I like it because I agree with him that Christianity is baseless. He’s writing to motivate those of us who agree with […]
Tell me sweet little lies: evidence that people like being lied to
Tell me lies, tell me sweet little lies While I was a Fleetwood Mac fan when the song “Little Lies” was released back in 1987, I must admit the lyrics didn’t make a lot of sense to me. Who wants to be told lies? Don’t we all want the truth? Now that I’m older and […]
I’ll pray for you (and other Christian baloney)
This morning I found this Non Sequitur cartoon in my files. And it got me to thinking how often I’ve engaged in Christian baloney where I’ll say something not because I intend to do it but simply because saying it is the right and proper social expectation to fulfill. A few years ago a friend of […]
Is theology baloney? Reflections on the latest Sokal-styled hoax
I an indebted to Ray Ingles for making me aware of this blog post which chronicles a clever Belgian philosopher’s appropriation of Alan Sokal’s modus operandi. (Sokal, you may recall, was a scientist who famously submitted a nonsensical article to the postmodern journal “Social Text” which passed peer review. He did so as a way […]
Is Daniel Dennett a conspiracy wingnut?
You were raised a good conservative who faithfully listened to Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity with your parents. You read all Ann Coulter’s books. You considered Michael Moore and all his ilk to be mealy-mouthed liberals. Then you enrolled in university and attended a public lecture from an articulate political scientist on the state of the economy. […]
What is Patrick Chan really up to?
It is with a heavy heart that I must announce Patrick Chan was not, in fact, satirizing the triabloguers. So then what was he really up to? Well in response to my article he said he was satirizing me: Sorry, Randy! I know I took a great risk satirizing you like I did. Initially I […]
Has Stephen Law been sucked into an intellectual black hole? A Review of Law’s “Believing Bullshit”
Stephen Law. Believing Bullshit: How Not to Get Sucked into an Intellectual Black Hole. Prometheus, 2011, 271 pp. ISBN: 978-1-61614-411-1. In the vein of Carl Sagan’s The Demon Haunted World (Ballantine, 1997) and Michael Shermer’s Why People Believe Weird Things (Holt, 2002), comes this new book by Stephen Law, senior lecturer in philosophy at Heythrop […]
Back from the New York Groove (Part 2)
Here continues the first person account of Randal’s extensive tour of the Eastern seaboard in which he was the center of attention at tickertape parades in New York, New Brunswick, and Princeton. Day 5 On Monday evening I led a discussion on the doctrine of hell at the “Philosophy on Tap” meeting at a local […]
Car salesmen do it. Lawyers too. And politicians. And also academics.
It was summer, 1989. I was a sixteen year old standing on the Ford lot completely dazzled by the 1988 Ford Mustang 5.0 sitting hunched down and ready for action. It didn’t take long for the salesman to emerge from the air-conditioned showroom, doing his best to appear to be on an aimless stroll through […]