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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Hey Maragon; are your ears burning?

Vera did spake thusly:

"There are some in science who impose their beliefs on the data, which is a wicked evil practice. I don't know if you had a chance to chat with Maragon while she was here but she is a dyed in the wool naturalist that imposes her belief on the evidence even when there are many missing pieces to the puzzle and the evidence does not support her conclusions. Her greatest credential is her degree in evolutionary biology which she claims makes her superior to anyone speaking here on the subject.

Posted on October 12, 2008 5:57 AM"

In thisly thread.

Maragon, I hope you weren't throwing around facts and evidence like they somehow carried weight in the real world, were you? You know that fundies only deal in ad hoc excuse-making and internally self-contradicting flights of fancy when it comes to science, what's wrong with you? Go watch some Hovind videos until you're feeling better...

The above comment was from a discussion between verafiedung and jrk83 about which worldview lined up best with scripture; OEC or YEC...

It's great watching YEC and OEC going at it - kind of like watching two kids arguing about which is the greatest Star Wars film ever; The Phantom Menace or Attack of the Clones. You just have to let them wear themselves out and surruptitiously put Empire Strikes Back into the DVD player while they're not looking...

I'm also open to A New Hope, but anything else is pure blasphemy.

Now, what shall I have for breakfast...


  1. It's so good to know that getting a degree in a subject area doesn't make you more knowledgeable about it than Joe "Apple pie" "Six Pack" American. Then again, I wouldn't be shocked if she thought someone with a degree in theology was just as knowledgeable as Ray.

  2. I say hurray!

    Let's let those right-wing dominionist Christians drive all the elites out of the United States.

    Europe is waiting for them.

  3. Isn't Vera this ignorant woman who believes your sins affect your DNA? That might be true if excessive sun-bathing is a sin now, but otherwise:
    Vera, if you read this, I have a degree in genetics and my superiority and me are telling you that you are a complete moron.

  4. "Maragon, I hope you weren't throwing around facts and evidence like they somehow carried weight in the real world, were you?"

    Please no ..... please.....
    don't. the boyn..it hoyts...

    I want to scream, "Poe!" But I am convinced she is serious.....
    ***frog tears****

  5. Dear Tilia,

    If this is true you can't blame Vera for believing it. It reminds me about something a priest told my uncle at school during religious eduction. This priest claimed that committing sins would cause dark spots on your heart that the doctor could see when you get x-rayed.

    It's not the ones who get told this garbage who are to blame but those fear-mongers who make up this bullshit against better knowledge.

  6. germanmike,
    interesting theory...
    But women get white crystals in their placentae, if they smoke during pregnancy. Does that count?

    I don't think anybody today has the right to tell bullshit just because they aren't better informed.

  7. I think Vera is just jealous of Maragon's "natural" assets.

  8. When talking about the limitations of science I very much prefer the picture of the mandelbrot set


    to that of a puzzle. We can get the shape, but we won't fully reach it.

  9. whoops, link doesn't work. Just copy and paste the link if you want to see a picture

  10. I know this is a bit of a tangent, but I have a new hypothesis: Religious fundamentalist lack the ability to empathize

    They are incapable of accurately imagining what it would be like to be the person they're arguing against or preaching to. I think they're unable to understand the point of view of another person (specifically regarding religious belief).

    Imagine Vera trying to *accurately* explain Maragon's opinion - not refute it, but simply restate it and explain why Maragon believes it to be accurate.

    I think I can describe why Dan believes the way he does, without insulting him. I think I might even be able to do this about Ray?

    Do you even imagine Ray being able to do this about atheists?

    It would explain why they talk AT people so much...

  11. Rufus,
    I know what you mean. Those blue eyes........

  12. The great thing about Vera is that she won't accept anyone's ideas if they contradict what she believes - regardless of the truth of or credentials behind said ideas. Even with my Masters degree, she'll STILL know more than me - she WAS a NURSE you see...

    Admittedly I have honestly broken my own rule(title does not dictate rightness) a few times with Vera on the subject of biology and pulled the "IM A FUCKING BIOLOGIST DON'T TELL ME SOMETHING I KNOW TO BE FALSE IN REGARDS TO EVOLUTION IS TRUE" - but anyone who's dialogued with her for more than like 3 posts can sympathize with my frustrations.

  13. Admittedly I have honestly broken my own rule


    anyone who's dialogued with her for more than like 3 posts can sympathize with my frustrations.

    I was actually going to point out the Argument From Authority thing, but I figured it best to keep quiet until I knew the context of it. I've seen the fundies claim scientific knowledge doesn't constitute being an authoity on the scientific topic being discussed.

    So yeah, I can definitely sympathize :p

  14. Whateverman,

    I desperately try not to argue from authority.
    I want to be right because I am, not because I have a degree in 'x'.

    However, there comes a point in a dialogue with someone when they are asserting something that you KNOW to be false because you've spent 4 years of your life learning about something and it's SO annoying when they insist they know better because they read it on {insert bad apologetics site here}.

  15. Vera is in a class by herself.
    I kinda like that because we thus have something in common, indirectly speaking.

    Her husband, of course, is a "phrophet," and Vera has found the truth which she is trying, messiahnically, to teach to "the lost church."

    I'm hearing some pretty spooky fringe ideas there. But, It works for Ken Ham, et al so maybe it will work for Vera. Nogod only knows.

  16. I agree, Maragon. The possibility that Vera simply refused to listen to any contradictory evidence is what kept me from piping in.

  17. We all want to be right all the time.
    That's what separates the wheat from the chaff in my book. When confronted with the evidence rational people will at least consider it, and discuss it in a thoughtful manner, but not these godbots.
    As the old saying goes, "if I had a dollar for every time I had to change my mind on something......"

  18. She just copy pastes from RTB. So all you have to do is hack RTB and then add the truth to their website and she will have to accept it.

  19. The huge problem with Vera is her contradictory nature, and her lack of will to understand anything said by others.

    For instance, I told her that pointing to the particular differences between humans and other apes just shows how we distinguish humans from other apes. That following her logic no ape would be an ape because each species has its particulars. Her answer? A link to DNA differences between humans and chimps by her beloved Dr Rana (some asshole who takes bits of science, and changes and twists, and reinterprets, and misrepresents to make it into a Christian point).

    So I wonder. Did Vera understand what I said, or she just figures I might have said that humans and chimps have almost identical DNA (which I did not)? What the hell?

    And that is just the most recent example. I am not going to argue with her anymore.

    Also, when she reads this Rana guy (or gall), she also reinterprets and changes into something else.

    Not just that, she admits evolution, but then she does not. I just do not get her.


  20. I just noticed, Vera responded to me in that post five years later. I am debating whether it is worth responding back. Considering she missed my point entirely, shocking I know.

  21. Whateverman said:

    Religious fundamentalist lack the ability to empathize.


    Haven't you noticed how egocentric Ray and his followers are?

    "I've been forgiven."

    "I'm washed in the blood of the lamb."

    "I have a personal and special relationship with Jebus".

    "I'm going to heaven."

    "I was lost but now I'm found."

    "I've excepted Jebus as my personal savior."

    "I'm afraid of dying and also of taking responsibility for my own actions or having to make my own moral choices."

    I could go on and on but you get the point.

  22. BeamStalk,

    I would not answer to vera any further. perhaps just ask her to read it again and try and get the point. And that would be it.


  23. Whateverman: are you a psychologist?

    "Religious fundamentalist lack the ability to empathize"

    I think you're right on the money with that one: we are very definately getting talked at, not talked to.

    I heard an interesting (but unorthodox) definition a while back: A "Psychopath" is merely an individual without empathy. They can do extremely well in society, and many people including their friends may be unaware of this deficiency, but they do as they do simply because of a reward/punishment analysis of the situation.

    I wonder whether some religous fundumentalists fit this definition...

  24. Hang on, hang on.

    I was fundie for nigh on 10 years.

    Are you all call me a sociopath?

  25. "Some"! I said "some"! Not all!


    Maybe the definition was for sociopath? That would make more sense...

  26. Quasar asked Whateverman: are you a psychologist?

    No, but thanks for the compliment. I'm an ex-Food Scientist turned Frustrated Software Engineer who cooks like a fiend and plays the drumset in his livingroom every day.

    That's actually a really good summation :p

    Quasar went on to say: I heard an interesting (but unorthodox) definition a while back: A "Psychopath" is merely an individual without empathy.

    As far as I understand it, this is actually commonly accepted, rather than being fringe or unorthodox. It's been demonstrated that some of the most psychotic killers are least able to understand or perceive the feelings of others.

    I'll admit: it's very tempting to consider Ray and his Inner Circle to be beyond the help of secular humanism :) However, I think the inability to understand how others would feel as the result of some event is more widespread than just pathology. I can see this trait in the Joe Coworker (though whether they're pretending or sincere, I can't tell).

    I am serious, however. I suspect at least *some* of the Christian fundamentalists here are unable to put themselves in the shoes of their critics.

    As someone who posts criticism here far more than is healthy (heh), I think I'd be able to accurately portray some of the people I criticize. I don't mean to say I understand everything that motivates them - I mean that I think I understand some simple version of that motivation: what they want, how they perceive the opposition, etc.

    I'm trying to test this with Dan right now. He's responded, but I haven't had the time to digest it sincerely.

  27. "I'm trying to test this with Dan right now. He's responded, but I haven't had the time to digest it sincerely."

    I noticed that. I was going to comment, but thought I'd leave you to it.

  28. The Phantom Menace sucked more.

    I actually liked Attack of the Clones but it was so obvious that it could have been done better.

    So it's really a choice between A New Hope and Return of the Jedi.

    I'd have to go with A New Hope, R2 D2 cracks me up in that one.

    Was that a point whooshing past me? :)

    You have a degree? Cool :) All I have is this lousy GCSE C in Maths.

    Is everyone here equally well educated or is there more of an even spread?

  29. 5.5 year bachelor of science degree here :)

  30. I don't have any degree at all - blame it on lazyness, but the nebulous German higher education system just turned me off. Kudos to Tilia for going through that.
    I should have realized that a more streamlined system like the US has would have suited me better. So now I educate myself from comparatively simple literature. I'm a chronically curious person, so I'll read about all sorts of topics (religion, philosophy, biology, astronomy, psychology etc.), but not in a way that would get me through any college exam.

  31. felix said: I'm a chronically curious

    Those educated people who lack this have stopped learning. You, on the other hand, will simply get smarter with age.


  32. I barely made it out of high school, with my 1.9 GPA, graduating 197 out 220 (Hey, I could be president). I just like to read and think and try to understand. But I do wish I was a science degree guy (Hey Terry).

  33. Masters in civil engineering here, 4 years at a British Uni learning how to pass exams with a hangover - a valuable life lesson.

    Mr Smith,

    Jedi was ok, I mean, the Ewoks make Jar Jar Binks look like...fucking...Shaft! [any 'Spaced' fans in the room?] but you made a wise choice going for the original film.


    I second the /salute

  34. Felix, being an autodidact is far more valuable than any piece of paper is.


  35.      Well, an argument from authority is always invalid. (If the "authority's" judgement is sound, the reasons that drew him to the conclusion may be useful in an argument.)


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